GAZA CITY — Palestinian security forces have been cracking down on Hamas members in the West Bank despite the implementation of a reconciliation deal, Hamas leaders said Wednesday.
Hundreds of supporters of the party and Hamas leaders have been summoned by Palestinian Authority forces and 68 members have been arrested, a statement by Hamas said.
“Thirty-nine of those who were arrested were ex-prisoners freed from Israeli jails, while seven political prisoners were brought to military trials.”
The Palestinian Authority has also violated reconciliation principles by dismissing four teachers from Jenin and Nablus schools and by closing down charities in the West Bank, the statement added.
Vientiane – The number of people involved in accidents caused by unexploded ordnance (UXO) in Laos, the country with the largest number of cluster bombs around the world, has fallen from an average of 300 a year to 117 in the last two, according to statistics reported by the government. However, the National Regulatory Authority for UXO / Mine Action (NRA) estimates that there are over 200 thousand hectares of agricultural land still to be cleaned. From 1964 to 1973, U.S. planes dropped more than two million tons of bombs on the country, including 277 million cluster munitions, 30% of which remain unexploded, according to the NRA. Currently, all 17 provinces of the country and about 25% of villages still suffer from various types of UXO contamination. Despite the decline in the number of victims, people are still very shaken.
A new ten-year program of the government was presented on June 27 at a meeting in Geneva for the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM), which prohibits the use, stockpiling and production of cluster munitions. The program focuses on cleaning the territory of the poorest 42 districts affected, mainly along the old Ho Chi Minh trail that runs from north to south along the Vietnamese border. The government has given priority to the cleaning of about 22 000 hectares of land to be cleaned within the next 16 years. Since the start of the operations in 1996, the UXO Lao, the national operator cleaning staff, supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), has cleaned up about 24 thousand hectares.
In Xieng Khouang Province in just two weeks about 108 unexploded weapons were found. The CCM 2008 came into force in August 2010. The government of Laos hosted the First Meeting of States Parties in November 2010, concluded with the adoption of the Vientiane Declaration and Action Plan. According to Article 6 of the Convention, all states in the position to do so, are obliged to provide assistance to those affected. Everyone’s cooperation is essential for Laos in order to cope with this emergency.
Christian Peacemaker Jenny Rodriguez and I visited the community of Las Pavas in May. It was good to see them back on their land, where I first met them in March of 2009. The Colombian Constitutional Court has recognized that the community’s claims on these lands have merit, so the likelihood of further displacements seems remote.
However, despite the court ruling, and despite the Ministry of the Environment’s assessment that palm oil cultivation would adversely affect these lands, the palm oil company Aportes San Isidro continues to occupy these lands. Some of its personnel, protected by police, are living about ten meters from the community’s homes. Aportes San Isidro is unlikely to cease its operations until the Colombia legal system annuls its title to the land. Only then can the families of Las Pavas receive their registration as the legitimate title-holders.
Las Pavas bases its claim to this land on the land forfeiture by the previous title-holder and Las Pavas’ right of possession. Under Colombia’s land reform laws, a property owner forfeits title to lands that he or she fails to cultivate or otherwise occupy for an extended period. These laws grant rights of ownership to third parties who have occupied and cultivated such lands (or state-owned lands) for period of five years or more. Under these criteria, the community of Las Pavas applied to the Colombian Institute for Rural Development (INCODER) for the right of possession back in 2006. The Constitutional Court’s ruling in favour of the community requires INCODER, which so far has denied the community’s claims to the land, to reopen the case.
INCODER has a conflict of interest. It is simultaneously responsible for both land reform and rural development in Colombia. Aportes San Isidro’s palm oil cultivations complement INCODER’s economic development plans for the area, since they are likely to contribute to economic growth by supplying the global demand for bio-fuel. The Las Pavas community’s development plans, on the other hand, focus not on national economic growth, but rather food security, the environment, and the future well-being of the community. These factors could very well make INCODER sympathetic to Aportes San Isidro’s palm oil production, and therefore reluctant to comply with the Constitutional Court’s ruling that requires the reopening of the Las Pavas community’s claims to these lands.
Even so, here in Colombia the return of the community of Las Pavas to its land is described as a miracle. Very few of the over four million internally displaced Colombians have regained access to their land. Indeed, since the new government of Juan Manuel Santos was inaugurated at the start of August 2010, at least eight leaders of displaced communities directly involved in advocating for return of their families’ or their communities’ land have been assassinated, presumably by paramilitary or criminal gangs that benefited from stolen land.
The combined political and legal efforts of a host of national and international allies-campaigns against Body Shop, Daabon Organics helped raise the community’s profile, ensuring that the community leaders were not killed despite threats against them and allowing the community to return to its land. Furthermore, the Constitutional Court of Colombia, unlike the lower courts, aligned itself with the court of public opinion and ruled in favour of the community.
More miracles are required:
The annulment of Aportes San Isidro’s land title, and its removal from the lands in question must follow the Constitutional Court’s ruling; the Colombian authorities must issue land titles to the community; and the community must receive compensation for all the environmental and property damage done by the Daabon and Aportes San Isidro consortium. Only then can the community members begin the work of rebuilding their lives and a better future for their children.
The blog 3arabawy posted a statement from the Egyptian Independent Union Federation, drafted last week, that affirms solidarity with the Palestinian people and upholds their commitment to “reject any form of normal relations” with Israel, including gas supply agreements that have been in place since Mubarak was empowered.
On 2 July, 3arabawy posted a press release from the Representative of the Egyptian Independent Union Federation. The press release stated:
We call on the global trade union movement to cut links with the Histadrut and to support the Palestinian Trade Union Coalition for BDS.
Kamal Abu Aita, representative of the Egyptian Independent Union Federation (EIUF) which was recently formed in Tahrir Square during the revolution, confirmed yesterday that the EIUF rejects any attempt to ‘normalise’ relations with Israel. In a speech in London to hundreds of activists from the campaign for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel, Abu Aita also welcomed the formation of the Palestinian Trade Union Coalition for BDS (PTUC-BDS) and called on the international trade union movement to join the coalition.
Abu Aita said: “The Egyptian Independent Union Federation has a very clear position and that is one of solidarity with the Palestinian Arab people, support for their right to a state in the whole of their land and support for their right to use all forms of resistance against the Zionist state. The EIUF announces its rejection of all forms of normal relations with the racist, settler Zionist state and we will not co-operate with any of its official or trade union bodies because they are all connected to the Zionist occupation of our land. It is impossible for us to work with this racist regime, and it is vital to build a movement of humanity which aims to get rid of racist regimes against the world, just as we got rid of the Apartheid regime in South Africa.
The Egyptian revolution opened the door wide for our people to express their rejection of the Zionist state. From the beginning, the revolution has worked in the interests of the Palestinians, by stopping the export of Egyptian gas to the Zionists, and opening the border crossings. Egyptian youth besieged the embassy of our enemy and demanded the expulsion of the ambassador. We reject any relationship with the Histadrut because it is part of this racist regime. We call on all friendly unions to boycott the Histadrut as part of the campaign to get rid of racist regimes all over the world.
Omar Barghouti, one of the founders of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI), said: “The support of the Egyptian independent unions, represented by their federation, for the Palestinian Boycott Campaign is a source of pride for us, just as we are proud of Egypt’s leadership in the march of freedom from imperialism both old and new. We look forward to the return of the spirit to the all the Arab peoples struggling for freedom and social justice, and to break away of dependency on imperialist domination.”
Dominican popular organizations united in the Alternative Social Forum reaffirmed their support for a national strike scheduled for Monday in protest of the high cost of living.
Dominican Republic Vice President Rafael Alburquerque said the government is always available for dialogue. But unions are not presently looking for dialogue and announced their support for popular demands in addition to salary increases for public employees. The Alternative Social Forum said that the authorities should respond to the demands if they wish to avoid the strike.
Fidel Santana, spokesperson of the Forum, said a government official had called for a meeting, but was told that the Social Forum has no interest in participating in theatrics. Moreover, the official who was not identified, had no decision making power.
In response to the vice president’s call for dialogue Santana stated that in his view, only President Leonel Fernandez and his closest officials can address the demands.
Demands include a wage increase of 30 percent for all public employees, changes to the Hydrocarbons Law and rescinding the increase in electricity tariffs.
Meanwhile business leaders yesterday said that the cessation of work activities would be very damaging to the economy. They recommended convening a dialogue with the authorities to try to reach an agreement regarding the demands.
*Translation by Aletho News
Chomsky reveals he has lobbied Venezuela’s government behind the scenes since late last year after being approached by the Carr centre for human rights policy at Harvard University. – http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jul/03/noam-chomsky-hugo-chavez-democracy
WHO IS CARR CENTRE?
Carr Center for Human Rights Policy http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Carr_Center_for_Human_Rights_Policy
Sarah Sewall is the Director of the Carr Center – http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Sarah_Sewall
SHE IS ALSO ON ADVISORY BOARD OF?… Center for a New American Security – http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Center_for_a_New_American_Security
WHO ELSE IS ON THAT BOARD WITH HER? … Susan Rice and James Steinberg, The Honorable Dr. William J. Perry, Hoover Institution/ Dr. Madeleine K. Albright, Principal, The Albright Group LLC/Richard L. Armitage, President, Armitage International/ Norman R. Augustine, Lockheed Martin Corporation/Admiral Dennis C. Blair, USN (Ret.), Former Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Pacific Command Dr. Richard J. Danzig, Sam Nunn Prize Fellow, Center for Strategic and International Studies/William J. Lynn, Senior Vice President, Government Operations & Strategy, Raytheon Company/Lt Gen Gregory S. Newbold, USMC (Ret.), Managing Director, Torch Hill Capital/John D. Podesta, President and CEO, Center for American Progress (THATS THE CARR CENTRE DIRECTORS COHORTS)
NOW WHO ARE THE MAJOR SUPPORTERS OF CARR CENTRE FOR WICH CHOMSKY IS INTERVENING IN VENEZUELAS INTERNAL AFFAIRS?
BRACE YOURSELVES …
The Schooner Foundation, Carnegie Foundation, Ford Foundation, McCormick Tribune Foundation, Sydney and June Barrows Foundation, Alchemy Foundation, Kathy and Gary Anderson, Greg Carr, John L. Eastman, Gail Furman, Tsutomu Kanase, Tristin and Martin Mannion, Robert McKeon, Sheila and James Mossman, Cynthia Ryan, and Vincent Ryan are listed in their 2003 / 2004 annual report. 2003/04
According to their http://www.hks.harvard.edu/cchrp/aboutus/annualreports/20022003_AnnualReport.pdf 2002/03 Annual Report, supporters included Fabbio Cappon, Carnegie Corporation of New York, Gregory C. Carr, Center for Public Leadership, Ford Foundation, Gail Furman, Norman and Rosita Winston Foundation, and Reebok Foundation.
NOW HOW AN ESTIMEED … (TO OTHERS NOT ME) SCHOLAR CAN INTERVENE ON THESE GROUPS BEHALF, SPEAKS VOLUMES …. AND CHOMSKY IS NOT JUST ACTIVE IN SUCH MATTERS AGAINST CHAVEZ, BUT ALSO WORKING TO ADVANCE WESTERN INTERESTS AND POLICIES IN NICARAGUA …
At Work for John Negroponte? http://fanonite.org/2008/06/19/at-work-for-john-negroponte/
Noam Chomsky, Brian Wilson and Tom Hayden and their fellow signatories have helped the Bush regime recoup lost ground for unjust US and European militarist corporate domination in Latin America which they will bequeath to whichever US plutocrat dauphin is anointed in November.
CHOMSKY IS ALSO A CLOSE FRIEND OF HAMID DABASHI SPOKESPERSON AND A MOST VOCAL PROPONENT OF THE GREEN MOVEMENT OF IRAN
DABASHI IS A FRAUD, SEE … http://thenakedfacts.blogspot.com/2011/06/bswatch-war-in-context-exposed-arab.html
ITS NO SECRET CHOMSKY BACKS THE GREEN PARTY WHAT HE LEAVES OUT IS THEIR PRO MONARCHY, PRO SHAH, PRO NEOLIBERALISM, PRO WESTERN IMPERIALISM POSITIONS, THEIR VIOLENT ACTS, THEIR DISHONESTY IN COOKING UP VIDEOS OF BEING BRUTALIZED BY USING BOTTLES OF FAKE BLOOD AND MANY MORE CASES, LIKE WESTERN FUNDING BY THE US STATE DEPARTMENT AND CIA … AND EVEN ITS LEADERS WHO ARE BILLIONAIRES UNDER THE GUISE OF ”REFORMERS”!!!
More on the green movement of Iran, scroll down after it opens… http://thenakedfacts.blogspot.com/2011/06/more-lies-by-western-backed-green-party.html (see supplementation)
For more on the Venezuela – Chomsky issue see:
By Stephen Gowans on July 6, 2011
A Few Facts about the Case of Judge Aﬁuni
By Fernando Vegas Torrealba | Correo del Orinoco International | July 8th 2011
Lebanese lawmakers have given their vote of confidence to the newly-appointed government of Prime Minister Najib Mikati.
Thursday — the third and final day of a related parliamentary discussion — saw 68 out of 128 MPs endorsing the policy statement adopted by Mikati’s government.
Mikati’s government, in which the Lebanese resistance movement of Hezbollah and its Muslim and Christian allies have the majority of the seats, was formed in June.
The parliament’s confidence vote enables the government to carry out its mandate.
Ahead of the voting process, the prime minister addressed the lawmakers, vowing to preserve stability and security in Lebanon and asserting that his government is committed to national unity.
A sticking point in the preceding talks was the government’s determined stance on a United States-backed UN court, which recently ruled on the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Premier Rafiq Hariri.
The pro-Western Future Television owned by the Future Movement of the victim’s son Sa’ad Hariri has said the court’s indictment has named four Hezbollah members.
The Hezbollah movement and its allies view the tribunal as a joint US-Israeli plot.
Mikati has also insisted that “indictments, regardless of their source, are not conclusive and that any accusations need solid evidence that cannot be doubted.”
The March 14 parliamentary coalition also led by Hariri has, however, argued that the government’s policy statement lacks a commitment to the court.
The alliance had vowed to vote against the government and walked out of the session en masse just before the start of Thursday’s voting process.
Lebanon’s Maronite Church had urged the parliamentarians to vote for the government.
It had said that the indictment came at a time when the cabinet was working to finalize a draft of its policy statement, and that it sought to sow discord among the Lebanese political ranks.
GAZA — A medical aid convoy sent by the Arab Medical Union has delivered some five tons of aid to the Gaza Strip after landing on Wednesday.
The convoy, headed by the AMU emergency committee secretary-general Ibrahim al-Za’faraani, entered through Rafah crossing on the Strip’s border with Egypt.
On board were 24 drugs which ran out in the Strip. The total value of the shipment is 290,000 dollars.
The Gaza Strip has been suffering a medical crisis due to Israel’s siege. Dozens of medicines and medical consumables have been out of stock there.