Archive for ‘Market Lords’

03/09/2015

Flame of Revolution Sparks in Lebanon’s Burgeoning Protest Movement

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Lebanese people gather at the Martyrs' Square during a rally to protest the ongoing rubbish crisis (AA) | Source: Middle East Eye

Lebanese people gather at the Martyrs’ Square during a rally to protest the ongoing rubbish crisis (AA) | Source: Middle East Eye

On 17 July, the government’s contract with the cleaning company Sukleen expired, resulting in the suspension of rubbish collecting services.

Rubbish piled up in the streets, with the hot summer sun contributing to a nauseating smell and repellent heaps obstructing the roads and intersections.

03/09/2015

Europe Doesn’t Have a Migrant Crisis, It Has a Syrian Crisis

Human Wrongs Watch

By Joe Dyke*

BEIRUT, 2 September 2015 (IRIN)* – Imagine Syria didn’t exist – that the war never happened. Suddenly Europe’s migration crisis doesn’t look so bad.

The two EU countries that receive the vast majority of arrivals by boat are Italy and Greece.

In Italy, the number of sea arrivals (mostly from Libya) has changed little since last year.

From January to the end of August, there were 114,000, up from 112,000 over the same period in 2014, according to the International Organization for Migration.

This is still higher than Europe would want, but not a number that a rich economic bloc of more than 500 million inhabitants shouldn’t be able to accommodate.

03/09/2015

‘Liberated’ Iraq: Over 1,300 People Killed and 1,800 Injured in August Only in Baghdad

Human Wrongs Watch

Terrorism, violence and armed conflict in Iraq killed more than 1,300 people and injured over 1,800 others last month, reflecting a “steadily increasing number of casualties,” according to casualty figures released on 2 September 2015 by the United Nations Assistance Mission in the country (UNAMI).

Two small children who fled the escalating violence in Iraq (file photo). UN Photo/Bikem Ekberzade

Two small children who fled the escalating violence in Iraq (file photo). UN Photo/Bikem Ekberzade

The number of civilians killed was 585, and the number of civilians injured was 1,103 in August 2015, the Mission reported.

“Baghdad was the worst affected Governorate with 1,069 civilian casualties (318 killed, 751 injured),” according to the report. “Diyala suffered 108 killed and 162 injured; Ninewa 69 killed and 3 injured; Salah al-Din 23 killed and 13 injured and Kirkuk 17 killed and 15 injured.”

02/09/2015

Tony Blair Could Face Grilling for ‘Trying to Save Gaddafi’ During Libya War

Human Wrongs Watch

**Tony Blair, 50th Munich Security Conference 2014 | Author: Marc Müller Link back to Creator infobox template | Source: www.securityconference.de, direct link | Wikimedia commons

**Tony Blair, 50th Munich Security Conference 2014 | Author: Marc Müller Link back to Creator infobox template | Wikimedia commons

A forthcoming biography of Prime Minister David Cameron claims Blair telephoned Downing Street during the Libyan war to explain he had been contacted by “a key individual close to Gaddafi.

Blair allegedly told the PM’s office the Libyan dictator wanted to “cut a deal” with Britain, but Cameron did not take up the offer.

Former Foreign and Defense Secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind said Blair should face questions from MPs over the claim.

There is no reason at all why [MPs] shouldn’t pursue it,” the Conservative minister under John Major said.

He added that while he thought it was “entirely reasonable” for Blair to pass a message on from Gaddafi, it was not Britain’s place to negotiate a deal with the Libyan leader because it was an international military campaign.

02/09/2015

Number of Women and Children Crossing Macedonia to Seek Refuge in Europe Triples in Three Months

Human Wrongs Watch

GENEVA/SKOPJE (UNICEF)* – The number of women and children fleeing violence in their countries of origin and passing through the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia seeking refuge in Europe has tripled in the past three months, UNICEF on 1 September, 2015 said.

Source: UNICEF

Source: UNICEF

An estimated 3,000 people are transiting through the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia daily. A third of them are women and children – up from 10 per cent in June. Some 12 per cent of the women are pregnant.

According to figures from the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia Ministry of Interior, 80 per cent originate from Syria, while 5 per cent are from Afghanistan and another 5 per cent are from Iraq.

02/09/2015

The Orphanage in the Rubble

Human Wrongs Watch

By Almigdad Mojalli*

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SANA’A, 1 September 2015 (IRIN)* – Amongst the rubble of ruined Sana’a, the shutters of a once-proud orphanage hang loosely from their hinges. Huddling below smashed windows, a few dozen children, dirty-faced and hungry, wait for food.
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Before the war, the orphanage – commonly referred to as just Dar al-Aytam – was known for turning Yemen’s street children into soldiers, business leaders and politicians.

Now, it struggles even to get by. Many children have fled the relentless bombing and run off to track down relatives.

Those who stay get little food and even less education. It is becoming a sad relic, just another victim of the conflict.

02/09/2015

‘Refugee’ or ‘Migrant’ – Which Is Right?

Human Wrongs Watch

By Adrian Edwards*

GENEVA, August 2015 (UNHCR)*  With almost 60 million people forcibly displaced globally and boat crossings of the Mediterranean in the headlines almost daily, it is becoming increasingly common to see the terms ‘refugee’ and ‘migrant’ being used interchangeably in media and public discourse. But is there a difference between the two, and does it matter?

© UNHCR | Refugee or Migrant – word choice matters.

Yes, there is a difference, and it does matter. The two terms have distinct and different meanings, and confusing them leads to problems for both populations. Here’s why:

Refugees are persons fleeing armed conflict or persecution.

There were 19.5 million of them worldwide at the end of 2014.

Their situation is often so perilous and intolerable that they cross national borders to seek safety in nearby countries, and thus become internationally recognized as “refugees” with access to assistance from States, UNHCR, and other organizations.

31/08/2015

Survivors Tell Harrowing Tales of Fight for Air on “Boat of Death” Off Libya

Human Wrongs Watch

By Alice Philipson*

PALERMO, Italy, 28 August 2015  (UNHCR)*  Abdel pushed his face up to the cracks between the wooden floorboards, gasping for air.

© UNHCR/A. Penso | Hsna, 45 , cradles her two-year-old son Abdu as they wait for a bus to take them to a reception centre.

Next to him between 200 and 300 migrants and refugees who departed Zuwarah, Libya in the early hours of Tuesday morning on a rickety wooden boat were suffocating in the pitch-black hold.

“We didn’t want to go down there but they beat us with sticks to force us,” said Abdel, 25, from Sudan. “We had no air so we were trying to get back up through the hatch and to breathe through the cracks in the ceiling. But the other passengers were scared the boat would capsize so they pushed us back down and beat us too.

“Some were stamping on our hands.”

31/08/2015

Confessions of a Frustrated “Soil-hugger”

Human Wrongs Watch

By Professor David Powlson*

29 August 2015 (Greenpeace)* – As a soil scientist you would expect me to be enthusiastic about the benefits that soil gives to humanity and very happy that the United Nations designated 2015 as International Year of Soils.

Photo credit: Emile Loreaux/Greenpeace

Photo credit: Emile Loreaux/Greenpeace

During this year there have been numerous activities throughout the world to draw attention of a wider public to the value of soil. In the UK, the British Society of Soil Science has been active in organising events in schools – recognising the need to enthuse future generations.

The properties of natural soils under forest or grassland are especially impressive; by “natural” I mean soils largely unaltered by humans by processes such as ploughing.

In these soils the interactions between physical, chemical and biological processes are particularly amazing.

31/08/2015

The Molten Three

Human Wrongs Watch

By Uri Avnery*

29 August 2015

I MUST admit that Moshe “”Bogie” Ya’alon did not top the list of my favorite politicians. The former army Chief of Staff and present Minister of Defense looked to me like a mere lackey of Netanyahu and a one-dimensional militarist. Many people call him a “bock”, a non-complimentary German-Yiddish term for billy goat.

Uri Avnery

Uri Avnery

Yuval Steinitz, the present minister for I-don’t-know-what, was also not at the top of the list of politicians I admire. He, too, seemed to me one of the servants of Netanyahu, without a recognizable personality of his own.

Even the former army Chief of Staff, Gabi Ashkenazi, was not one of my ultimate heroes.

When he was appointed, some malicious people claimed that he owed his advancement to his Oriental origin, since the Minister of Defense, at the time, was also of Oriental origin.

Ashkenazi’s father was from Bulgaria, his mother from Syria. The Minister of Defense at the time, Shaul Mofaz, was from Iran. Ashkenazi was in charge of one of the serial wars against Gaza. He was and remains popular.

Now I admire all three. More than that, I am deeply grateful to all three.

WHAT HAS brought about such a profound change?

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