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Payday Loans: All You Need To Know | Payday Now

Payday Loans: All You Need To Know | Payday Now

Payday loans are familiar to many people. They’re often used to dealing with unanticipated financial challenges, such as weekday emergencies. You might be wondering, though, if PaydayNow loan is good for you.

A payday loan is a type of short-term borrowing. It is usually determined by your next pay period. Because it is quick, it is vulnerable to high-interest rates, but it might help you pay for expenses in a pinch if you can repay the whole amount with your next paycheck.

The phrase “payday loan” was invented by them to indicate the day when the borrower’s income will be accessible, according to their contract.

The borrower will be handed cash in exchange for a check for the amount they wish to borrow plus the cost of financing. This method is usually carried out with the lender’s permission to allow electronic access to their bank account in order to pay or collect the loan at a later date.

Because this kind of loan isn’t secured, you won’t have to provide additional security to the lender. Rather than requiring security, a payday loan allows the lender to connect to your account via electronic transfer and pay the amount owed.

Paydayloans are usually payable in full when you were paid the following time you get paid. This means that the interest rate on payday loans is fixed and will not alter over the loan’s life. Whether you have a small or huge paycheck, the payday loan is always the same amount!

The majority of lenders provide two-week loans or less. In certain locations, payday loan restrictions have been introduced, limiting the maximum amount of money that may be borrowed in a specific period of time, such as 60USD-600USD.

There’s a lot to look forward to when it comes to payday loans, but there are a few things that clients should be aware of before signing a contract.

To begin, consumers must have a solid bank account, personal identity, and steady employment that pays them on a regular basis or income from other sources on a regular basis.

Furthermore, borrowers must ensure that they are financially responsible for their actions, as lenders are seldom able to inspect what the borrower intends to do with their funds.

It might be difficult to handle if people aren’t prepared for financial commitments ahead of the loan’s due date, which can come as a surprise.

According to a recent survey by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, approximately 80percent of payday loans studied over ten months were borrowed or rolled over within 30days.

1 out of every 5 payday loans is defaulted on, but the issue is exacerbated for people who must obtain installment paydayloans online.

Paydayloans are meant to offer clients rapid cash while charging exorbitant interest rates. They come in a variety of sizes, depending on the state’s maximum amount of loan, and your rates may increase.

A typical payday loan has a yearly percentage rate of 390 percent to 780 percent. Furthermore, the cost of financing might range from P200 to P300 depending on the quantity you demand. If you borrow 20USD, for example, you will be charged a 490percent interest rate.

Payday loans are misunderstood by many individuals. They feel they are a viable solution for obtaining fast cash advances. However, if you’re thinking about taking out a paydayloan, make sure you understand everything about it so you don’t end up with a high recurrence rate.

Make sure you do your homework so you don’t find yourself in a situation where you need more money than a payday loan can provide.

It is typical for people to pay back payday loans with their debit cards at banks. Because you agree to enable your lender to drain cash straight from your checking account when you make a payment when you take out a loan, this is the case. Before signing any paperwork, make sure you’ve read them completely.

Lenders usually impose penalties for late payments. Consumers’ interests are protected by a number of balances and checks. As a result, if a lender does more than they are entitled to do, whether by mistake or for any other reason, they have broken the contract’s norms and regulations.

If repaying your loan on time becomes challenging, the lender may grant you a longer repayment period. This can be achieved by extending the period you have to start making payments on the initial loan or by rolling the loans over.

When a lending institution agrees to pay all outstanding payments, a rollover occurs, and the loan is then repaid in whole. Be wary of consenting to an extension or a rollover because it means you’ll be paying more to repay your debt than you initially committed to!

When you’re struggling to get out of an unexpected financial problem, a payday loan is a wonderful alternative for providing an instant and simple answer. However, you must be mindful about not allowing yourself to go farther in debt.

Lagos State issues new abortion guidelines

The Lagos State Government has developed a Safe Termination of Pregnancy Policy Paper to assist health professionals in providing safe and legal abortion services in the state.

Dr. Olusegun Ogboye, Permanent Secretary of the Lagos State Ministry of Health, said so during a stakeholder meeting to launch the document on Tuesday in Lagos.

Ogboye said this in a statement by Tunbosun Ogunbanwo, director of public affairs at the state health ministry.

According to him, the 40-page policy document, titled “Lagos State Guidelines on Safe Termination of Pregnancy for Legal Indications,” lays out guidelines for safe termination of pregnancy under of Lagos State criminal law.

Ogboye noted that the document should provide data and evidence-based information to public and private sector health workers with the skills to provide safe pregnancy termination to reduce preventable deaths.

He said while therapeutic termination of pregnancy was authorized by state law, the lack of clear guidelines had blocked effective implementation at appropriate levels of care, resulting in preventable deaths.

“In 2011, the Lagos State Legislative Assembly updated the Penal Code, providing for abortion to save life and protect the physical health of women.

“While physical health is covered under the Lagos legal framework, law-compliant services are not available in the Lagos State health sector.

“This document provides information on the relevant laws applicable in Lagos State, while providing standards and best practices with respect to legal indications, pre and post procedure care, methods and aftercare.

“I must state here that this document has been the subject of wide consultation with relevant technical actors in the context of state legal and health services,” he said.

Ogboye said the process of developing the guidelines began in 2018 with the ministry-led “Safe Engage Project” hosted by the Society for Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Nigeria (SOGON), with support from the Population Reference Bureau ( PRB).

He added that public health sector stakeholders worked with key opinion leaders in Lagos and the South West region to develop a bespoke advocacy tool for dismissals in the legal context.

According to him, advocacy messages on the Safe Engage Project focused on two immediate outcomes.

He noted that the outcome included ensuring that safe abortion services were available within legal guidelines in Lagos and the domestication of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act, helping women terminate a pregnancy caused by rape or incest.

“To guide implementation, one of the follow-up recommendations from the project was the adaptation of national standards and guidelines for safe termination of pregnancy within legal guidance in the context of Lagos State. .

“The Federal Ministry of Health has developed and disseminated the National Guidelines on Safe Termination of Pregnancy, which highlights the compendium of conditions and circumstances under which termination of pregnancy may be instituted.

“The guideline was intended to enhance the ability of healthcare professionals to identify pregnancies for which a legal termination could be instituted.

“Marie Stopes International in Nigeria, in conjunction with the Population Reference Bureau, has offered to assist the state government in adapting the document,” he said.

Ogboye said the process of adapting the national guidelines included technical meetings to discuss the sections of the law supporting safe abortion and the conditions allowed in the legal framework to save the lives and physical health of mothers.

He added that this also included a validation meeting with wider stakeholders to review the document.


“We hope this release today will help health providers deliver this service within the law,” Ogboye said.

Further, Mr. Emmanuel Ajah, Country Director, Marie Stopes International Organization Nigeria (MSION), said the development and dissemination of the policy document showed that Lagos was leading a state-level intervention to stem the tide. unsafe abortions and give women and girls better health outcomes. .

Ajah said abortion in Nigeria was not illegal but restrictive, noting that many health care providers ignored the legal indications for safe termination of pregnancy.

He stressed the importance of health care providers making critical decisions based on sound medical judgment and not religion, culture or other biases, when a woman’s life is in danger. as prescribed by Nigerian laws.

Ajah added that the policy was a demonstration of the state’s commitment to improving maternal health, particularly mitigating the impact of unsafe abortion practices in the state.

Similarly, Professor Innocent Ujah, former president of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), said the guidelines would safeguard the lives of pregnant women whose physical or mental health would be compromised by continuing their pregnancies.

Furthermore, Professor Ayodele Atsenuwa from the University of Lagos Department of Law, and also a consultant on the development of the document, said that the Lagos State Criminal Law of 2011 only prohibits illegal abortion. .

Atsenuwa noted that the document clarifies what legal termination of pregnancy means in the context of the law, adding that training law enforcement officers was essential to understand the context of the law.


Moscow Embassy in Bulgaria launches fundraiser for Russian troops

The Russian Embassy in Sofia, Bulgaria. Photo: Wikimedia Commons/MrPanyGoff.

The Russian Embassy in Sofia announced on Monday evening the start of a fundraising campaign to support Moscow forces fighting in the occupied Donetsk and Lugansk regions in eastern Ukraine.

The embassy claimed in a Facebook post that it was launching the fundraiser in response to popular demand from Bulgarians.

“In view of the numerous requests of citizens to the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation to support the servicemen participating in the special operation to protect the people’s republics of Donetsk and Lugansk, a charitable foundation has been created – PROTECTion”, he added. said.

He added that donations can be accepted through three Russian banks – Promsvyazbank, Sberbank and VTB Bank.

The launch of the fundraising campaign has so far not elicited any reaction from parliamentarians or the outgoing government.

But he was quickly condemned on social media by people who oppose Moscow’s rhetoric.

“So the Russian Embassy in Bulgaria is launching a campaign for its so-called special operation. There is no mistake here. A country that allows a campaign in support of terrorism should only be mentioned using a lowercase first letter,” writer Radoslav Bimbalov wrote in a widely shared post.

Some Facebook users said they alerted the social media company to the embassy campaign.

The Russian Embassy in Sofia is headed by Eleonora Mitrofanova, who has held this post since January 2021. She was previously First Deputy Minister in the Russian Foreign Ministry.

Mitrofanova has been accused of interfering in local politics and has repeatedly crossed swords with outgoing Prime Minister Kiril Petkov, who outright condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

After Petkov criticized Mitrofanova’s comments to a Russian TV channel that the Bulgarian nation is against anti-Russian rhetoric, Mitrofanova on March 23 described Petkov as “an employee of a country” who is “unfit” to comment on events.

After Petkov’s government was overthrown on June 22, following a quick no-confidence vote in parliament, he said it was “an honor for me to lead a government that was overthrown” by oligarch Delyan Peevski, former Prime Minister Boyko Borissov and Mitrofanova.

Mitrofanova responded by telling the Russian news agency RIA Novosti on June 23: “The fact that I am somehow responsible for the fall of the government is a convenient explanation – Russia is always presented as the reason for everything that takes place in Bulgaria.”

Relations between Moscow and Sofia have been strained for some years and there have been several expulsions of Russian diplomats accused of espionage.

Center has asked Sindh to raze buildings near US consulate: Murad

Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah said the Center had asked Sindh to raze buildings near the US consulate. Photo: The News/File

KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah on Monday rejected Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s claim that its federal government was overthrown by a US plot.

Responding to harsh criticism from opposition leader Haleem Adil Sheikh, the Sind CM told the Sindh Assembly that his government had received two letters from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs under the PTI government for the demolition of houses or buildings. floors of some buildings near the United States. Consulate in Karachi.

He said that on December 1, 2021, the government of Sindh received a letter from a federal ministry requesting demolitions around the US consulate. He added that his government had received another letter on April 1, 2022 from the Foreign Office requesting demolitions.

Shah said the new letter was sent after Imran Khan showed a letter claiming to be evidence of a US conspiracy on March 27. He wondered that on the one hand, the PTI government was claiming that the United States had started a plot against him, and on the other hand, he was asking the Sindh government to demolish the buildings around the American consulate.

The CM also said that before the MQM-P left the PTI government coalition, the MQM-P chairman, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, asked the PTI to provide him with evidence of foreign conspiracy and promised that the MQM-P would not leave the PTI if the conspiracy claims were true. However, as the PTI did not provide any evidence, the MQM-P left Imran Khan’s government. He said the government of Imran Khan was overthrown by constitutional means. The Sindh CM called the PTI’s foreign conspiracy rhetoric a drama staged by Imran Khan, and said the “foreign prime minister” resorted to airing false foreign conspiracy allegations once he lost the majority support in the National Assembly.

Summer Reading Club will inspire children and families to read

Children and families can make reading a fun part of summer by joining the BC Summer Reading Club (BC SRC), a free literacy program available at public libraries and online across British Columbia.

“Reading together brings stories to life and strengthens bonds between families, communities and local libraries,” said Niki Sharma, MPP for Vancouver-Hastings. “Encouraging children to read during the summer while having fun builds the confidence and motivation needed to keep learning. This program develops literacy skills that will enrich children’s lives and help them succeed.

Libraries welcome the participation of children of all reading abilities and offer virtual and in-person Summer Reading Club activities, with each library developing its own programs based on community needs. Families can register readers ages 5-14 and learn about activities on the program’s website or by visiting their local library.

The BC Summer Reading Club encourages children to read daily and track their progress. From listening to a story to reading a graphic novel, all forms of reading matter – and in any language. Entrants can enter contests to win prizes and earn digital badges. Many libraries also award a medal to those who reach their reading milestones.

“For more than 30 years, the BC Summer Reading Club has worked with local public libraries to provide an engaging, interactive and inclusive literacy program for children and their families across the province,” said Rina Hadziev, Executive Director of the British Columbia Library Association. “This program has become a tradition and summertime highlight for many families, and we’re always thrilled to hear the wonderful ways it meaningfully impacts them.”

Through their local libraries, families can participate in weekly activities and events based on this year’s theme: All Together Now features artwork by Vancouver-based illustrator and video game artist Elaine Chen.

In May 2022, the province invested $8 million in COVID-19 relief and recovery funding for libraries, including $100,000 to the BC Library Association to support increased accessibility and inclusion for BC Summer Reading Club in the years to come.

Coordinated by the British Columbia Library Association and public libraries, the BC Summer Reading Club is supported by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and CUPE BC.


Christina de Castell, Chief Librarian and CEO, Vancouver Public Library –

“The Summer Reading Club is an annual highlight for the Vancouver Public Library, especially for bonding with our young patrons. Our staff looks forward to seeing children and their families return each summer to be part of our SRC programs and events. It’s a fun way for young readers to develop literacy, a love of reading, and lasting relationships with their library.

Stephanie Usher, Provincial Coordinator, BC Summer Reading Club –

“This year, our theme, All Together Now, focuses on building community and connections, and features the beautiful artwork of Vancouver illustrator Elaine Chen. We’re excited to share weekly activities and contests online starting Monday, July 4, including a free Ask Me Anything virtual event featuring Elaine in her role as this year’s BC Summer Reading Club artist.

Fast facts:

  • The Department of Municipal Affairs provides $65,000 annually to support the BC Summer Reading Club.
  • In 2021, 63,758 children signed up for the BC Summer Reading Club in more than 200 communities with 209,610 recorded reading entries online.
  • There are 71 public libraries in British Columbia, 247 service points and six library federations, serving 99% of British Columbia’s population.

Learn more:

BC Summer Reading Club – participate, register and access online reading tracking here: https://bcsrc.ca/

Learn more about local libraries: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/publiclibraries

Microsoft Deepens Investments in Qatar with New State-of-the-Art Office; expands operations to foster economic growth

In a bid to expand its operations in Qatar, Microsoft has opened its fourth and largest facility in the country in Lusail City as part of a significant investment here, which includes the upcoming Microsoft Cloud Datacenter Region.
The launch of the new offices reinforces Microsoft’s commitment to making Qatar a center of knowledge and innovation and will allow Microsoft to better serve its customers, collaborate with its technology partners, and attract and develop top talent.

Microsoft was joined by HE Minister of Communications and Information Technology Mohamed bin Ali al-Mannai and senior officials from the US Embassy in Qatar to celebrate the official opening of its new state-of-the-art office in Burj Al Fardan, City of Lusail. The inauguration ceremony was streamed live on Microsoft Teams to allow company employees in the broader Middle East and Africa region to join in the celebrations.
“Microsoft has deep roots in Qatar and our commitment to help grow Qatar’s innovation economy has never been stronger. With the launch of our new offices and Customer Innovation Center, customers and partners will have the opportunity to co-innovate, imagine and imagine game-changing solutions that will revolutionize their industries,” said Lana Khalaf, General Manager of Microsoft Qatar.

With one side of the office overlooking the Arabian Sea and the other facing the desert, this eye-catching space merges Microsoft’s global corporate identity with local Qatari flavor to capture nature’s forward-looking, nimble and resilient Qatar.
Microsoft’s new facility includes a Customer Innovation Center that will host innovation and ideation workshops aimed at inspiring game-changing solutions that are driving transformation across all sectors in Qatar. The office will play a vital role as an innovation hub for tech startups, students, and community organizations from across Qatar.
It will also serve as the company’s regional talent hub, serving Qatar and the broader Microsoft Middle East cluster region. The work done on the site will support the company’s efforts to develop, retain and recruit the most talented people to develop the most cutting-edge solutions.

The new office was designed with the changing face of work in mind, presenting an inclusive hybrid workplace that enables employees to better serve customers and collaborate with partners, whether in person or remotely.
Leveraging the company’s latest future work technologies, the sustainable and smart space facilitates seamless hybrid working that provides employees with the flexibility to split their working time between the office and offsite locations, resulting in productivity increased, higher employee satisfaction and better team collaboration.

The office incorporates a Team Based Space design that combines the latest technology with modern, collaborative workplaces and is equipped with the latest Microsoft Teams-enabled hardware and software to facilitate seamless hybrid working.
Khalaf said: “When designing the new office, we were guided by two main principles. The first was our determination to provide the best place to work for our employees, providing a highly engaging, inclusive and flexible environment that leverages the latest modern work technologies to create scalable smart workspaces.
“The second was sustainability – to deliver the first office to be certified to the highest sustainability standards in the Middle East. I am extremely proud to say that we achieved both of these goals while putting customers first with our Customer Innovation Center. »
She added, “I look forward to welcoming customers, partners, visitors and Microsoft team members to our new offices and I am confident that this expansion will boost the recruitment and retention of the most talented people. brilliant people who will be inspired to create cutting-edge solutions. for organizations and locals.

PHOTOS: Shaji Kayamkulam

In 2020, Microsoft announced ambitious commitments to become carbon negative by 2030 and remove more carbon from the environment than it has emitted since its inception by 2050.
In line with these sustainability goals, the new facility is equipped with the latest green technologies to promote energy and water efficiency and is the company’s first office in the Middle East to achieve Level 1 of Microsoft’s global sustainability standard.
The premises also achieved a Microsoft C-Grade global accessibility standard to extend equal opportunity for all employees to access their workspaces with features such as easily accessible parking spaces, automatic doors, room signs with Braille and audible and visual alarm systems.

Visa Inc. (NYSE:V) is the 4th largest position in Norman Fields Gottscho Capital Management LLC


Norman Fields Gottscho Capital Management LLC reduced its stake in Visa Inc. (NYSE:V – Get Rating) shares by 0.1% in the first quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The company held 100,681 shares of the credit card processor after selling 61 shares during the period. Visa represents approximately 8.4% of Norman Fields Gottscho Capital Management LLC’s investment portfolio, making it its 4th largest position. Norman Fields Gottscho Capital Management LLC’s holdings in Visa were worth $22,328,000 at the end of the last quarter.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently changed their holdings in the company. Capital Advisors Wealth Management LLC increased its stake in Visa by 0.4% in the fourth quarter. Capital Advisors Wealth Management LLC now owns 10,563 shares of the credit card processor valued at $2,289,000 after buying 45 more shares in the last quarter. Corbett Road Capital Management LLC increased its stake in Visa by 3.1% in the fourth quarter. Corbett Road Capital Management LLC now owns 1,486 shares of the credit card processor valued at $322,000 after buying 45 more shares in the last quarter. IVC Wealth Advisors LLC increased its stake in Visa by 0.8% in the fourth quarter. IVC Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 5,757 shares of the credit card processor valued at $1,248,000 after buying 46 additional shares in the last quarter. Financial Consulate Inc. increased its stake in Visa by 1.0% in the fourth quarter. Financial Consulate Inc. now owns 4,851 shares of the credit card processor valued at $1,051,000 after buying 46 more shares in the last quarter. Finally, Tranquilli Financial Advisor LLC increased its stake in Visa by 3.1% in the fourth quarter. Tranquilli Financial Advisor LLC now owns 1,537 shares of the credit card processor valued at $333,000 after buying 46 more shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 80.77% of the company’s shares.

A number of equity research analysts have commented on the company. Cowen cut its price target on Visa from $276.00 to $254.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a Wednesday, April 27 research note. Cowen reduced his price target on Visa from $276.00 to $254.00 in a Wednesday, April 27 research note. Credit Suisse Group raised its price target on Visa from $260.00 to $265.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a Wednesday, April 27 research note. Goldman Sachs Group began covering Visa in a research note on Tuesday, May 17. They issued a “buy” rating and a price target of $282.00 for the company. Finally, Evercore ISI raised its price target on Visa from $304.00 to $310.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a Wednesday, April 27 research note. Five research analysts gave the stock a hold rating and twenty-one gave the stock a buy rating. According to MarketBeat, the stock currently has a consensus rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average price target of $267.44.

In other Visa news, Chairman Ryan Mcinerney sold 6,466 shares of the company in a transaction that took place on Monday, March 28. The stock was sold at an average price of $220.00, for a total value of $1,422,520.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available via this hyperlink. Additionally, CEO Alfred F. Kelly, Jr. sold 9,000 shares of the company in a trade that took place on Tuesday, May 31. The shares were sold at an average price of $210.38, for a total value of $1,893,420.00. Following completion of the transaction, the CEO now owns 162,887 shares of the company, valued at approximately $34,268,167.06. The disclosure of this sale can be found here. In the past three months, insiders have sold 39,933 shares of the company worth $8,745,055. 0.21% of the shares are held by insiders.

Shares of V opened at $205.51 on Friday. The company has a current ratio of 1.29, a quick ratio of 1.29 and a debt ratio of 0.53. Visa Inc. has a 12-month minimum of $185.91 and a 12-month maximum of $252.67. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $204.67 and its two-hundred-day moving average is $212.20. The company has a market capitalization of $390.73 billion, a P/E ratio of 32.31, a PEG ratio of 1.67 and a beta of 0.90.

Visa (NYSE:V – Get Rating) last released quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, April 26. The credit card processor reported EPS of $1.79 for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.65 by $0.14. Visa had a return on equity of 42.89% and a net margin of 51.10%. The company posted revenue of $7.19 billion for the quarter, versus analyst estimates of $6.82 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned earnings per share of $1.38. Visa’s quarterly revenue increased 25.5% compared to the same quarter last year. Equity research analysts expect Visa Inc. to post EPS of 7.16 for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, June 1. Shareholders of record on Friday, May 13 received a dividend of $0.375. This represents an annualized dividend of $1.50 and a yield of 0.73%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, May 12. Visa’s payout ratio is currently 23.58%.

Visa Company Profile (Get a rating)

Visa Inc operates as a worldwide payment technology company. The company facilitates digital payments between consumers, merchants, financial institutions, businesses, strategic partners and government entities. It operates VisaNet, a transaction processing network that enables the authorization, clearing and settlement of payment transactions.

Further reading

Want to see what other hedge funds hold V? Visit HoldingsChannel.com for the latest 13F filings and insider trading for Visa Inc. (NYSE:V – Get Rating).

Institutional ownership by quarter for Visa (NYSE:V)

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China continues talks on oil exploration

(UPDATE) CHINA looks forward to continued talks with the Philippine government under the administration of President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on joint oil and gas exploration in the Western Philippine Sea, a ministry official said. Foreign Affairs.

At a press conference in Beijing on Thursday, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said, “China is ready to work together with the new Philippine government to push forward negotiations on joint development. and strive to take early substantial action to deliver tangible benefits to both countries and peoples.”

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson made the remark on the same day as Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. said that talks between the Philippines and China for joint oil exploration in the Philippine Sea Western had been interrupted on the orders of President Rodrigo Duterte.

In his speech at the Foreign Office Foundation Day, Locsin said: “The President has spoken. I have carried out his instructions to the letter: the oil and gas talks are completely over. Nothing is wrong. is on hold; it’s all over.”

He said the two sides tried to negotiate for three years and got as far as constitutionally possible. However, another step forward would have risked a “constitutional crisis”.

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“This explains the sudden setback on my part that undid three years of hard and sincere work on the part of Wang Yi and I. We had both tried to go as far as we could – without giving up the aspiration of China on his part and within constitutional limits on my part. I closed the store completely,” added Locsin.

But Wang cited a memorandum of understanding that China and the Philippines signed in November 2018 to begin negotiations “and have made significant progress therein.”

The Chinese official hinted that the oil and gas discussion will continue under the new Marcos administration unless the pact is revoked.

Responsibility of the next administration

Locsin said it is now up to the next administration to protect Philippine sovereignty “to the wire.”

“The irreducible model of what is constitutionally possible is there in black and white. Giving up any part of Philippine sovereignty is not an option,” he said.

President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. had said he would assert the Philippines’ rights to the Western Philippine Sea and speak to China “in a firm voice” about the two countries’ territorial dispute in the region.

“Our sovereignty is sacred and we will not compromise it in any way,” Marcos told reporters. “We will not allow a single square millimeter of our maritime coastal rights… to be trampled upon.”

Marcos had also said he would use the 2016 arbitration award to assert the territorial rights of the Philippines.

Marcos added that he would urge not only China but also the Philippines’ Southeast Asian neighbors to reach a peaceful settlement of maritime disputes.

China ignored the arbitration award, while the Philippines under Duterte maintained its position of resolving maritime disputes through diplomatic negotiation.

The Philippines claims parts of the South China Sea in its exclusive economic zone and calls it the Western Philippine Sea.

After an extensive exploration program, the Philippines discovers the Nido oil field off the island of Palawan, marking the first discovery of oil in the northwest Palawan basin.

The discovery comes four years after the government passed the Petroleum Exploration and Development Act of 1972, which provides the legal basis for the exploration and development of petroleum resources as Manila pushes for energy independence.

Philippine Cities Service Inc., the country’s first oil company, began drilling a well in the Nido oilfield and began commercial production in 1979, producing 8.8 million barrels that year.

In 2012, the International Monetary Fund noted that the Philippines’ oil industry may have “significant potential” in the South China Sea, which is adjacent to the Northwest Palawan Basin.

Nigeria’s human rights record worse than average in sub-Saharan Africa – Report

Nigeria’s human rights record is “very poor” and “worse than the average in sub-Saharan Africa”, according to a new report by an international organization.

The report was compiled and released on Wednesday by the Human Rights Measurement Initiative (HRMI), a New Zealand-based organization that measures countries’ human rights performance.

The HRMI “Rights Tracker” is the first global report to assess the 13 different human rights contained in United Nations treaties for approximately 200 countries.

“Compared to other countries in sub-Saharan Africa, Nigeria is performing below average,” the report says, confirming what observers and rights advocates say about the Nigerian state’s human rights record. and the daily experience of Nigerians.

In the report, HRMI said Nigeria’s score on economic and social rights is in a “very poor” range.

The country obtained 54.6% for the right to food; 48.7% for the right to health; 35.7% for the right to housing and 32.0% for the right to work.

On all four rights, Nigeria performed less well than most countries in sub-Saharan Africa.

“There is no reason for any country to score so low,” HRMI said. “Not only are countries with a score below 75% not having the kinds of structures and policies in place that help people claim the right, but the structures and policies in place are very likely to prevent many people from claiming. their rights. »

HRMI researchers have adopted two different methods to assess a country’s performance; with the first benchmark being “adjusted income”.

Using the income-adjusted benchmark, the report compared countries with other countries at a similar income level, to gauge how effectively each country is using its available resources.

“The second benchmark is the “global test”. This benchmark assesses the performance of countries against the best performing countries at all resource levels,” the organization said, noting that “each assessment standard uses a set of indicators that are commonly available and most relevant. for these countries.

“Each country is assessed on both standards as far as information is available in international databases,” HRMI added.

“To measure Quality of Life – economic and social rights – we use data from international databases. Then we use econometric techniques to combine the data with each country’s income level, to produce a score,”

“The score, expressed as a percentage, shows how well a country is using its resources to produce good human rights results. Every country should be able to get closer to its 100% income-adjusted goal by improving policies and practices, even without more money.

Data for economic and social rights measures were taken from “the 2022 update of the international Economic and Social Rights Realization Index (SERF), which covers the period from 2007 to 2019”.

The report’s findings paint a picture at odds with the human rights record that the Nigerian government has repeatedly claimed to have improved.

On the right to health, the report ranked Nigeria 41st out of 42 countries it examined in sub-Saharan Africa; sitting just behind Equatorial Guinea.

On the right to food, Nigeria ranked 37th, ahead of Sudan, Niger, Angola, Equatorial Guinea and Burundi on the scale.

The country was also ranked 35th on the right to work, finishing ahead of Mali, Benin, Zambia, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Malawi and Madagascar.

Along the same lines as last year’s report, the 2022 data highlights the seriousness of the Nigerian situation, reflected in the continuing concern of citizens and observers over impunity and the continuing disjunction between democratic transition and democratic standards. (PREMIUM TIME)

China takes a step towards the Horn of Africa


Traditionally, Africa is a low priority for most US administrations. Perhaps once in an administration, the president will visit the continent. The Secretary of State does not visit sub-Saharan Africa much more. Visits beyond South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya and Senegal are even rarer. Within the Department of State, the Bureau of African Affairs is typically lowest on the totem pole, in line for attention on the seventh floor after all other regional offices and just ahead of cafeteria management issues. and in the parking lot of the building.

It is strategic suicide to allow such neglect to continue. While Washington now recognizes China’s global competition, Beijing signals an expansion of its ambitions in the Horn of Africa. While Beijing’s primary focus over the past decade has been to bolster its military presence in the South China Sea, and its secondary influence has been to bolster its economic presence and military infrastructure in Pakistan and Sri Lanka, so his ambitions in the Horn of Africa were a close third. It may now be rising in China’s reckoning.

China has long used debt diplomacy to increase its influence in Djibouti and five years ago officially opened its first overseas naval base in the Red Sea country which also hosts US forces. Beijing has also cultivated former Somali President Mohamed Farmaajo, who offered China fishing rights at rock bottom prices. Somaliland dampened China’s ambitions when it established formal ties with Taiwan. While the National Security Council rented the move at the time, the Biden administration was more circumspect.

Beijing may see Washington’s reluctance as an invitation to act on a strategic region. Speaking at the “First China-Horn of Africa Peace, Governance and Development Conference” in Addis Ababa, Xue Bing, China’s special envoy to the Horn of Africa, said that Beijing wanted to play a bigger role, “not only in trade and investment but also in the field of peace and development. “This is the first time that China has played a role in the field of security”, China could no longer limit its forces to its base in Djibouti, but could instead participate in “peacekeeping”.

While China has so far been opportunistic, exploiting business opportunities in Ethiopia and Djibouti, Xue’s remarks suggest that China may soon move to a new stage in which it uses its military under cover of security operations. or partnerships in order to shape governments according to its interests. the coasts of the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean, from Sudan to Kenya.

The danger for the United States and the free world is great. The Horn is home to Bab el-Mandab, one of the world’s most important strategic bottlenecks, and within easy reach of two others: the Suez Canal 2,440 km to the north (but whose traffic must pass through Bab el-Mandab) and the Strait of Hormuz 1,280 miles to the northeast. If China succeeded in consolidating its control over the region, it would effectively control the energy, grain and fertilizer trade.

Russia and Ukraine may now monopolize the White House’s attention, but the Biden administration would be remiss if it ignored Africa as so many of its predecessors have done. After inspecting the port of Berbera and the city’s renovated airport, US Africa Command (AFRICOM) recommended a more permanent presence there. The Pentagon and the intelligence community agree. So is a growing bipartisan faction in Congress. The main obstacle? State Department inertia. It’s time for National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan to call a main committee meeting to resolve the impasse. Not only must the United States contribute to the revival of Berbera, but it is high time for the State Department to open a consulate in Hargeisa, the only true democracy in the Horn of Africa.

The State Department and the White House should also solidify its relations with Kenya, a real pivotal state in the region. Nairobi should not be a passing thought in Foggy Bottom, but on the agenda as much as Berlin, Paris or Mexico City.

Finally, there is new hope in Somalia as Hassan Sheikh Mohamud embarks on his second non-consecutive term as president with an energy and appreciation for the greater good of Somalia so often absent during Farmaajo’s rule. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud is not only a patriot, but also a responsible partner whom the United States should engage much more in order to help Somalia achieve its best future while simultaneously denying China the opportunity to exploit the country. . While anti-Americanism may run deep among supporters of Farmaajo and his former intelligence and national security adviser, terrorism-supporter Fahad Yasin, patriotic Somalis would recognize that China depends on the corruption of elites, but building stable, independently developed and prosperous countries has never been on his agenda. Somalia can be truly independent in the Western sphere; it can only aspire to a sclerotic kleptocracy under Chinese influence.

Xue is arrogant. He believes China is winning and the Horn of Africa is a clean slate for China’s ambitions. It’s time to show him how wrong he is.

Biography of experts – Now contributing editor in 1945, Dr. Michael Rubin is a Senior Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). Dr. Rubin is the author, co-author and co-editor of several books exploring diplomacy, Iranian history, Arab culture, Kurdish studies and Shia politics, including “Seven Pillars: What Really Causes Instability in the Middle East?” (AEI Press, 2019); “Kurdistan Rising” (AEI Press, 2016); “Dancing with the Devil: The Perils of Hiring Rogue Regimes” (Encounter Books, 2014); and “Eternal Iran: Continuity and Chaos” (Palgrave, 2005).

Indian Consulate General in New York celebrated International Yoga Day in Times Square — The Indian Panorama

Renowned yoga expert Ms. Ruchika Lal of the Art of Living Foundation led the main yoga session in Times Square on June 21 from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Consul General of India Randhir Kumar Jaiswal, sa woman and consulate staff members are seen participating in the Yoga session
Participants in the yoga session.
A yoga posture with Ms. Ruchika Lal.
Left to right: Prem Bhandari, Guest of Honor Swami Avdheshanand Ji, Professor Indrajit Saluja and an unidentified man at IDY celebrations in Times Square.

Thousands of people, including Indian consulate and government staff, participated

NEW YORK CITY (TIP): The 8th International Day of Yoga (IDY) was celebrated today by the Consulate General of India in New York at the iconic Times Square, the crossroads of the world. This year, the yoga celebrations were special, as they were part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav – 75 years of Indian independence.

In his remarks on the occasion, the Consul General recalled the growing popularity of yoga which is as much about physical health as it is about spiritual well-being and living in harmony with nature. Popular spiritual guru, Swami Avdheshanand Ji graced the occasion as guest of honor. In keeping with this year’s theme, Yoga for Humanity, he spoke about the contribution of yoga to promoting health, peace and harmony in the world. The main yoga session was led by renowned yoga expert Ms. Ruchika Lal from Art of Living Foundation from 09:30 to 10:30.

In addition, several sets of yoga sessions were also held throughout the day. The one-day event was attended by around 10,000 people. The session was broadcast live in India as part of the “Guardian Ring” which covered yoga events around the world, emphasizing the One Sun One Earth concept, showcasing the unifying power of yoga transcending boundaries.

The Consulate’s Times Square yoga event also showcased a variety of nature-based holistic health, Ayurvedic and wellness products from India. These products and superfoods have been promoted under the Government of India’s One District One Product (ODOP) initiative. Some of these products included organic turmeric, ginger, cardamom tea, Araku Valley coffee, and millet pasta. Ginger flakes and organic turmeric from Sikkim, India’s first all-organic state, were also on display and offered to yoga enthusiasts. Sourced from all over India with the help of ‘Invest India’, the products at the Consulate’s booth have been eliciting enthusiasm from visitors eager to learn more about their uniqueness and health benefits.

The excitement ahead of the 8th International Yoga Day was quite apparent in the strong turnout for a number of curtain-raising events. These were held in the weeks leading up to the June 21 celebration in Times Square. The festivities kicked off on June 1 with a World Yoga Festival organized by the World Yoga Community. The Indo-American Arts and Culture Forum hosted a yoga session in association with the Center for the Women of New York on June 4 in Bayside, New York. Community members turned out in large numbers for the Yoga Cruise on the East River on June 12 organized by the World Vegan Vision. YuVa Shakti discussed the benefits of yoga for seniors during a virtual session on June 17. Yoga sessions were also organized on June 18 and 19 by Vihangam Yoga.

For the first time, IDY was also celebrated on the American side of Niagara Falls. The Consulate General partnered with Buffalo-Niagara Tamil Mandram and Buffalo Indian Associations to host a yoga event at Goat Island of Niagara Falls State Park on June 19, 2022. This was the first time the IDY was celebrated on the American side of the world. most famous waterfall. Members of the Buffalo Network of Religious Communities, an organization made up of members of different religious groups, participated in the yoga celebrations which also brought together Indian students studying at various universities in Buffalo. The celebrations will now be an integral part of the Buffalo-Niagara region’s cultural calendar.

Several other yoga events are also planned in and around New York. GOPIO, Manhattan held a virtual event on June 23. On June 25, The Isha Foundation and Vihangham Yoga will celebrate IDY in Bridgewater, New Jersey and Shri Venkateshwara Temple NJ will host a yoga event in Hartsdale, New York. Connecticut will see yoga celebrations in Manchester on June 26 by the MILAN Cultural Association.

The United Nations, in December 2014, had unanimously adopted a resolution led by India to celebrate the International Day of Yoga on June 21 which is the summer solstice, the longest day of the year in the world. ‘northern hemisphere. Since 2015, International Yoga Day has been celebrated on a large scale across the globe, raising awareness of the multifaceted benefits of yoga. The Government of Sikkim, Invest India, TRIFED, State Bank of India, ICICI, Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Tetley, CaratLane and Art of Living have supported the Consulate General of India to celebrate the 8th International Day of Yoga in New York.

43% of foreign-funded projects deemed “problematic” – Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Economic Affairs said on Thursday that 43% of foreign-funded projects worth about $35 billion were problematic – either not progressing well or unable to deliver desired results.

At a review meeting of the National Coordinating Committee on Foreign Funded Projects, the ministry said it was managing an ongoing $34.8 billion portfolio of such projects in various sectors of the the economy. “Of the total portfolio, $15 billion (43%) is considered problematic,” he added.

In addition to this, the meeting was informed that “the share of federal energy projects is approximately $3.3 billion, of which $2.3 billion (or nearly 70%) is considered problematic,” according to an official statement.

No wonder the energy sector is emerging as a challenge to the country’s stability, an official said, referring to more than 17% losses and 10% short recoveries in the energy sector. electricity and 10 to 17% system losses in the gas sector.

Economic Affairs Minister Sardar Ayaz Sadiq chaired the meeting which was also attended by relevant ministers and representatives of provincial governments, in addition to heads of implementing agencies.

The Minister lamented the current status of energy sector projects given their importance and impact on the global economy and the general public. He said energy was arguably one of the most important inputs for economic growth to support industrial and commercial activities, but it was becoming a challenge.

The minister underscored the need to urgently address the issue of problematic projects, especially those experiencing chronic delays, in order to speed up disbursements and progress.

The meeting decided to set milestones and deliverables with timelines by focal ministries and executing agencies for better monitoring and prevention of time and cost overruns.

Economic Affairs Secretary Mian Asad Hayauddin proposed regular monthly follow-up meetings by focal ministries with implementing agencies and stakeholders for proper follow-up and prompt resolution of issues.

Posted in Dawn, June 24, 2022

NPA trains procurement unit on processes, ISO certification

THE Chief Executive of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mohammed Bello-Koko, challenged the NPA’s procurement department to be more proactive in terms of deciding on processes and procedures.

Addressing participants at the NPA’s Procurement Strategy Retreat held recently in conjunction with Renner & Renner Consulting, Bello-Koko said, “The essence of the Procurement Retreat is that the ministry sits down and discusses the ongoing changes in procurement law, understands and studies the many ways they can initiate procurement”.

The theme of the retreat organized by Renner and Renner Consulting Ltd was “Moving Procurement to Excellence: Changing the Narrative”.

Explaining further, Bello-Koko said, “One thing we look at is the right way to do things, how quickly to do it, and the best way within the law. We have hired a consultant who will talk to our procurement staff and teach them. »

Country Manager of Renner and Renner Consulting Ltd, Dr. Ibby Iyama while addressing the media during the program also used the opportunity to implore the NPA on the benefits of Procurement Management System (PMS) for International Organization for Standardization (ISO) certification.


She explained that they were working with NPA’s purchasing department to enable them to develop their systems for ISO certification, adding that the company is not in charge of certification.

She noted that currently the Ports of Onne, Calabar and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) were the only ISO-certified government agencies in the country.

“One of the reasons we embarked on this retreat is to implement PMS in NPA’s purchasing department.

“The PMS is a system that will streamline, standardize and tighten things up, it will ensure job enrichment, rotation, no one will be let down or overbearing because of rewards.

“Everyone’s performance will be seen through the PMS. With PMS, there’s transparency and accountability and it’s going to be tough on crime – you can’t get promoted for no reason,” she said.

She said the move was also for the department to understand the Federal Procurement Act of 2007 and recently 2022, which had new additions and changes to some fundamental parts of the 2007 act.

Iyama said the Public Procurement Law is the guideline for all government agency procurement departments and it is essential that all staff are aware of it.

“So NPA has taken the lead to take its procurement to excellence and we hope other government agencies will follow as the procurement issues have put a lot of management in the spotlight of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission. .

The earthquake in Afghanistan is the deadliest in decades


The United States offered its “sincere condolences” to those affected by Wednesday’s devastating earthquake in Afghanistan.

“We are deeply saddened by reports of an earthquake in eastern Afghanistan,” the US Embassy in Kabul’s Twitter account read. job Wednesday.

The United States has no presence in Afghanistan after the complete withdrawal of American troops and the collapse of the Afghan government, and its embassy currently operates from Qatar. He has no official relations with the Taliban government.

CNN asked the US State Department if it intended to provide aid in response to the natural disaster that killed more than 900 people.

On Wednesday, Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif offered his condolences in a tweet. (Anjum Naveed/AP)

Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif offered condolences and an offer of support in a tweet on Wednesday.

“Deeply saddened to learn of the earthquake in Afghanistan which resulted in the loss of innocent lives,” he wrote. “Pakistanis share the grief and pain of their Afghan brothers. Relevant authorities are working to support Afghanistan in this time of need.

India expressed “sympathy and condolences to the victims and their families”, according to a tweet from the spokesperson for India’s External Affairs Ministry on Wednesday.

The Iranian embassy in Kabul said it was send two planes with first aid supplies to Afghanistan.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said he was “mourning” the deaths caused by the earthquake, according to a tweet from the Chinese ambassador to Afghanistan. “Afg is a friendly neighbor of China, and China is willing to provide emergency humanitarian assistance according to Afg’s needs,” the embassy said. tweeted.

turkish ministry of foreign affairs said the Turkish Red Crescent, a humanitarian organization “operating in Afghanistan, has sent humanitarian aid to earthquake victims in the region”.

Pope Francis said he was praying “for those who lost their lives and for their families”.

“I hope that help can be sent there to relieve all the suffering of the dear Afghan people,” the pope said.

Former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani also called on charities and international organizations to come to the aid of families affected by the earthquake.

Saudi crown prince visits Turkey as countries normalize relations


Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is due to arrive in Ankara on Wednesday, making his first visit to Turkey as the two regional heavyweights continue efforts to restore ties following the assassination of Saudi columnist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul.

The Crown Prince will meet President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the final leg of a Middle East tour that has also taken him to Egypt and Jordan. His visit comes ahead of US President Joe Biden’s trip to the region next month.

Erdogan said the talks with the prince, who is commonly referred to by his initials MBS, would focus on advancing Turkish-Saudi relations to a “much higher degree”. Erdogan traveled to Saudi Arabia in April, making his first visit to the kingdom since 2017, a year before the horrific killing of Khashoggi by Saudi agents at the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul.

Turkey’s efforts to improve relations with Saudi Arabia come as Turkey faces its worst economic crisis in two decades and tries to attract investment from wealthy Gulf Arab states. Turkey has also taken steps to improve its relations with the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Israel.

Talks with Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates late last year resulted in investment deals worth $10 billion after years of regional rivalry.

Saudi Arabia, for its part, is trying to expand its alliances at a time when relations between Riyadh and Washington are strained. The crown prince is also seeking to end the Khashoggi murder scandal which has damaged his reputation.

Read more: Here’s why the US didn’t sanction Mohammed bin Salman for his role in the assassination of Jamal Khashoggi

Turkey had opened a trial in absentia against 26 Saudis suspected of Khashoggi’s murder, but the court decided earlier this year to stop the proceedings and transfer the case to Saudi Arabia, paving the way for the countries to come together .

Khashoggi’s killing had sparked global outrage and pressured the prince, who allegedly approved the operation to kill or capture Khashoggi, according to an assessment by US intelligence. The prince denied any knowledge of the operation which was carried out by agents who worked directly for him.

Without ever naming Prince Mohammed, Erdogan said the operation that killed Khashoggi was ordered by the “highest levels” of the Saudi government.

Khashoggi had entered the consulate in October 2018 by appointment to obtain papers allowing him to marry his Turkish fiancée, who was waiting for him outside. He never emerged and his body was never found.

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Minister Chris Hipkins admits making incorrect claims about journalist Charlotte Bellis

Minister Chris Hipkins has admitted publishing incorrect and personal information about journalist Charlotte Bellis, after criticizing the managed isolation system.

Bellis, a former Al Jazeera reporter, sought to return to New Zealand in January after finding out she was pregnant.

Because she was living in Qatar, where it is illegal to be single and pregnant, she applied for an emergency allowance under the managed isolation system that was operating at the time, but was refused.

The journalist made headlines when she went public with her frustrations with the government-run isolation system, saying that because of the situation she needed to seek a promise of safe haven from the Taliban in Afghanistan, where she worked.

New Zealand journalist Charlotte Bellis.

Jim Huylebroek/Supplied

New Zealand journalist Charlotte Bellis.

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Under mounting public pressure, Hipkins, who was Covid-19 minister at the time, cast doubt on Bellis’ story saying she had been offered consular assistance twice since early December 2021 but did not respond to offers.

It is understood Hipkins’ public apology was a request from Bellis’ attorneys. After Hipkins privately admitted wrongdoing to Bellis in March, his lawyers sought an apology instead of pursuing a legal settlement for defamation and invasion of privacy.

On Wednesday morning, Hipkins released a statement saying he had apologized to Bellis in a March 15 letter for “errors in my comments and the inclusion of personal information in the statement and for the distress it caused him. caused”.

“I was later informed that those comments were not accurate,” he said.

Minister Chris Hipkins apologized to journalist Charlotte Bellis.


Minister Chris Hipkins apologized to journalist Charlotte Bellis.

Advice provided to Hipkins by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, obtained under the Official Information Act by National Party Covid-19 spokesman Chris Bishop, showed officials briefed him that details of the government’s earlier contact with Bellis were “not intended for the public.”

Hipkins made the information public within hours.

“Ms. Bellis was contacted once in August and once in December while she was in Europe. In August, she was not pregnant and indicated she did not need any assistance,” Hipkins said Wednesday.

“In December, she was not in Afghanistan and this followed the government’s announcement that the border would reopen to New Zealand citizens in February, when she planned to return before the birth of her child.

“Ms. Bellis had never been offered, nor ever refused, an MIQ [managed isolation] place.”

He said his emergency request for a managed isolation place had been “disabled … by mistake”.

Bellis, in a statement, said she welcomed Hipkins’ apology and thanked him “for correcting the inaccurate comments he made.”

“The inaccurate information that the minister gave to the media has caused confusion among the public and led to unwarranted verbal abuse towards myself and my partner Jim.”

She said the couple stood by their decision to speak out about the managed isolation system “which was no longer fit for purpose and was negatively affecting so many New Zealand families”.

Bellis and her partner Jim Huylebroek were granted a place in the managed isolation system in February, and earlier this month Bellis gave birth to their daughter in Christchurch.

“We can’t wait to put this behind us and enjoy a new chapter with our daughter.”

Bishop, who has been critical of Hipkins’ actions throughout the sage, said the minister was right to apologize.

The managed isolation system has since been closed and quarantine requirements for people entering New Zealand have ended.

Digital asset market unveiled to promote cash transactions

A digital asset market has been unveiled in Ghana to complement efforts to stimulate a cash economy.

Currently operational in Nigeria, Glover App, launched its presence in the Ghanaian market through its brand campaign themed “One App Many Possibilities”.

It is one of the fastest growing gift card companies in West Africa that seeks to improve the gift card shopping experience and gift culture on the continent and globally in general.

According to organizers, Glover’s mission is to create a new asset class of Africans with the financial freedom they need to create the choices they seek to forge a better future and a more meaningful financial path through range of products and service offerings.

Managing Director Damilola Layode said there is a cash airtime feature on the app, which allows users to convert mobile airtime to cash or even bitcoin, in addition to other beneficial features of the application, which include; Gift cards, Airtime2Cash and recharge services (bill payments).

Mr. Layode said the brand is there to ensure seamless gift card transactions between individuals and businesses.

“Most importantly, we represent a means for us to further catalyze trade.”

Mr. Layode further stated that the app is secure and has ISO 27001 certification, one of the information security standards that has been published by an international standards organization.

“We went the extra mile to ensure that all onboard partners whose local maps are accessible on the platform are businesses people need, are timely and relevant to the people we are targeting as users. “.

“You are only allowed to transfer money from your wallet to a bank account that you have saved in your wallet,” he added.

Detained Brittney Griner’s wife says planned call never happened


WNBA star Britney Griner tried to call his wife nearly a dozen times through the US Embassy in Russia on the couple’s fourth anniversary on Saturday, but they never connected because the phone line of the embassy was not staffed, Cherelle Griner said Monday. The couple did not speak on the phone in the four months after Griner was arrested in Russia on drug-related charges. That must have changed on Saturday, when a long-awaited call was finally to take place. But the day came and went without any contact, leaving an anguished Cherelle Griner to wonder what was wrong and to suspect at least at first that the Russian authorities had foiled the call. On Monday, she said she learned a more distressing truth from her wife’s lawyers: Brittney Griner had actually tried to call 11 times over a period of several hours, dialing a number given to her at the States Embassy. United in Moscow, which the couple had been told they would then pass the call to Cherelle Griner in Phoenix. But each time the call went unanswered as the embassy office where the phone rang was apparently unstaffed on Saturday. “I was distraught. I was hurt. I was done, I was sick of it,” Cherelle Griner told The Associated Press. “I’m pretty sure I texted the BG agent and said, ‘I don’t want to talk to anyone. It’s going to take me a minute to collect my emotions and just tell everyone that I I’m not available right now. Because it just knocked me out. I wasn’t well, I’m still not well.


Auburn Bats wake up as they bounce off College World Series Stanford

Cole Foster The three-run brace in the sixth inning gave Auburn the lead, and the Tigers beat second-seeded Stanford 6-2 in a College World Series playoff game for their first win at Omaha in 25 years. The Tigers (44-21) play the loser of Monday night’s game between Arkansas and Mississippi on Tuesday. Stanford (47-18) wrapped up a disappointing short stint in Omaha. The Cardinal lost their opener to Arkansas 17-2 — the most lopsided game here in 34 years — then did next to nothing after taking an early lead against Auburn. Stanford, which has avoided elimination five times in its regionals and super regionals, went 0-2 in a CWS for the first time in 18 appearances. light trail (5-4) went five innings for the win and Blake Burkhalter, the Tigers’ closest star, struck out six of the eight batters he faced for his 16th save. Auburn was 0-3 in the CWS since beating Rice 10-1 in 1997.


Serena Williams skips training at Eastbourne ahead of return

Serena Williams skipped her scheduled training session at Eastbourne on late notice as the 23-time Grand Slam champion prepares to return to competition after a year out. Williams trained at a nearby club over the weekend and was due to have an on-site session at Devonshire Park before playing doubles with Ons Jabeur. Their first game is scheduled for Tuesday against Sara Sorribes Tormo and Marie Bouzkova. The 40-year-old Williams, who hasn’t competed anywhere since suffering an injury in the first round of Wimbledon last year, has been given a wild card for the singles at the All England Club. Jabeur said it was “incredible” that Williams asked him to be part of his return to competition during the Wimbledon warm-up. “I’m a good secret keeper – yes, I knew that (since) before Roland Garros,” said No. 3-ranked Jabeur, who arrived in Eastbourne after winning the title in Berlin on Sunday. “A lot of players were jealous because I play with her. Honestly, Serena is Serena. She is a legend and always will be.


Ceccon sets world record, Ledecky wins another title

italy Thomas Cecon set a world record in the men’s 100m backstroke and Katie Ledecky won another gold medal at the swimming world championships. Ceccon stunned the competition in Budapest clocking a time of 51.60 seconds to shave 0.15 seconds off the previous best mark set by American ryan murphy at the 2016 Olympics. Murphy finished second, 0.37 seconds behind, followed by his compatriot Hunter Armstrong, 0.38 behind Ceccon. “Hats off to Thomas,” Murphy said upon seeing his record broken. “It’s a really, really fast time and it’s going to be an exciting two years.” Ledecky took his record of world titles to 17 with his fourth in the 1,500 freestyle. Ledecky never looked threatened and clocked 15:30.15 – just under 10 seconds shy of her 2018 world record – to finish 14.74 seconds ahead of her fellow American. Katie Grimes.

Five Jharkhand female hockey players selected for US sports and cultural exchange program


Five female hockey players from Jharkhand will participate in a three-week sports and cultural exchange program in the United States of America from June 24 to July 13 this year.

The players – Pundi Saru and Juhi Kumari from Khunti district, Priyanka Kumari from Gumla and Henrita Toppo and Purnima Neti from Simdega district were scheduled to participate in the exchange program in 2020 but the event was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic Covid-19.

”Five of the best performers from the second edition of the East India Women’s Hockey and Leadership camp which ended on February 1, 2020, will participate in a three-week sports and cultural exchange immersion program in the United States designed by Middlebury from June 24 to July 13, 2022,’ a statement from the US Consulate in Kolkata said.

Pundi Saru, daughter of a worker, recently finished his 10th standard while Juhi Kumari had a difficult childhood with his alcoholic father and his mother working as a daily employee. With Priyanka Kumari’s father paralyzed, the full responsibility of supporting the family fell to her mother. Priyanka’s passion for sports led her to make a hockey stick from a bamboo stick, using which she trained hard.

Henrita Toppo from Simdega has also faced a lot of hardship as her mother works as a laborer to support her while Purnima Neti, also from the same district, comes from a poor financial background.

Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren who interacted with the young hockey players selected for a three-week talent exchange program at Middlebury College in Vermont, USA, congratulated them.

The American Consulate in Kolkata, in partnership with the NGO Shakti Vahini and with the support of the Jharkhand Hockey Federation, South Eastern Railway, Jharkhand Police and the Office of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA ), launched the Hockey project of Eastern India in 2018 to promote empowerment and promotes leadership and young girls’ development in young girls and women.

The project aimed to empower adolescent girls for community leadership, to combat human trafficking and gender-based violence.

“In its second edition in January 2020, the project was spearheaded by 16 female players from Middlebury College who traveled to Jharkhand to provide field hockey training to 100 young girls from different rural districts of the state,” says the communicated.

In addition to the on-court sports sessions, additional workshops were held which helped build a sense of confidence and community building that enabled them to act as leaders and mentors within their communities. respective, and to work in close collaboration with the police and the district committees to ensure school attendance and increased vigilance against traffickers, according to the press release.

Adrian Pratt, Director of the American Center Kolkata and Head of Public Affairs at the US Consulate General in Kolkata, said, “We believe the power of cultural exchange through sport is transformative. The East India Hockey program has become the face of our many relationships and partnerships. this underscored our decade-long anti-trafficking and gender-based violence efforts in the state.” During the six-day hockey training camp, five of the top 100 field hockey players been selected to visit Middlebury College, Vermont, USA for further hockey training.

Katharine DeLorenzo, field hockey coach and senior administrator at Middlebury College in Vermont, said, “Pundi, Juhi, Purnima, Henrita and Priyanka’s visit to the United States will be transformative for everyone involved. The five girls will experience daily strength and physical training, hockey competition with American women of all ages, health and wellness education, self-defense training , learning English and oratorical training. The five girls will also complete their hockey referee certification course before returning to India.” PTI NAM RG RG

(This story has not been edited by DevDiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Australian Deputy Prime Minister on 4-day visit to India starting today; defense cooperative on the agenda | Latest India News

Australian Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Richard Marles began a four-day visit to India on Monday, aimed at strengthening defense and security cooperation and engagement in the Indo-Pacific region.

Marles, who is the first senior official from Anthony Albanese’s government to visit New Delhi, will meet Union Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and other senior Indian officials.

His visit to India comes less than a month after the formation of Australia’s new government following the general election, and the trip reflects the importance Prime Minister Anthony Albanese attaches to relations with India.

Before departing for New Delhi, Marles described India as “one of Australia’s closest security partners” and said his government is “focused on revitalizing the country’s historically deep engagement. ‘Australia with our Indo-Pacific partners’.

“The rules-based international order that has brought peace and prosperity to the Indo-Pacific for decades is coming under pressure, as we face shifts in the geostrategic order. Australia stands ready to work more closely with India to support an open, inclusive and resilient Indo-Pacific,” he added.

Recent years have seen a significant increase in defense cooperation between the two countries, including the signing of the Mutual Logistics Support Agreement (MLSA) in 2020 which allows both sides access to military bases in the another for logistical support.

Marles, who will be in India from June 20-23, said: “Australia and India are complete strategic partners. I am committed to strengthening Australia’s defense and security cooperation with India.

He added that he was looking forward to meeting Singh and having their first bilateral meeting.

“Minister Singh has been instrumental in advancing the India-Australia defense relationship and I look forward to working with him to strengthen the defense pillar of our comprehensive strategic partnership.” he declared.

Marles will also speak with national security and defense policymakers and personnel during his visit.

The Indo-Pacific Endeavor 2022, the flagship engagement activity of the Australian Department of Defence, returns to India this year.

The two countries currently have strained relations with China.

While India has been locked in a military stalemate with China for more than two years, Australia-China relations are at their lowest since 2020, with Beijing imposing high tariffs, unofficial bans and demands strict controls for Australian exports.

Albanese attended a Quad Summit hours after being sworn in last month and recently sent Foreign Secretary Penny Wong to Pacific island nations to dissuade them from striking new security deals with China.


    Rezaul H Laskar is Foreign Affairs Editor at the Hindustan Times. His interests include cinema and music.
    …See the details

NPA Aims for ISO Certification with Implementation of Procurement Management System – Nigerian Observer

Dr. Ibby Iyama, Country Manager of Renner and Renner Consulting Ltd., has commissioned the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) to certify the Purchasing Management System (PMS) for the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

Iyama made this known during the NPA’s Strategic Procurement Retreat on Saturday in Lagos.

The theme of the retreat organized by Renner and Renner Consulting Ltd was: “Moving Procurement to Excellence: Changing the Narratives. »

She said they were working with NPA’s purchasing department to enable them to obtain ISO certification for their systems.

Iyama said the company was not in charge of certification but of the UK Accreditation Service (UKAS).

She noted that currently the Ports of Onne, Calabar and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration were the only ISO-certified government agencies in the country.

“One of the reasons we embarked on this retreat is to implement PMS in NPA’s purchasing department.

“The PMS is a system that will streamline, standardize and tighten things up. It will ensure job enrichment, rotation, no one will be fired or bossy because of rewards.

“Everyone’s performance will be seen through PMS, with PMS there is transparency, accountability and it’s going to be tough on crime, you can’t be promoted for no reason,” he said. she declared.

Iyama said they decided to change most federal government agency procurement departments starting with the NPA to change narratives and ensure excellence.

She said the move was also for the department to understand the Federal Procurement Act of 2007 and recently 2022, which had new additions, changes to some fundamental parts of the 2007 act.

Iyama said the Public Procurement Law is the bible of all government agency procurement departments.

She said it was essential that all staff were up to date with the Public Procurement Act.

“So the NPA has taken the initiative to take its procurement to excellence and we hope other government agencies will follow suit as the procurement issues have put a lot of management in the net of the Economic Crimes Commission and financial.

“Renner and Renner Consulting Ltd takes the lead in training and developing NPA’s procurement department towards excellence in line with global best practice,” she said.

Mr. Mohammed Bello-Koko, Managing Director of NPA, said that in the future, management expects the procurement department to be more proactive in terms of decisions on processes and procedures.

“The essence of the procurement retreat is for the ministry to sit down and discuss the ongoing changes to the Procurement Act, understand and consider the many ways it can initiate procurement.

“One thing they look at is the right way to do things, how quickly to do it, and the best way within the law, so we brought in a consultant who will talk to them and teach them,” did he declare.

On rewards for performance, Bello-Koko said the system in the civil service was vague, adding that the organization would continue to abide by civil service rules.

“Reward does not necessarily mean money, there are many ways to reward an employee. This retreat and training is part of that, we reward them for their good works,” Bello-Koko said.

Spring Revolution Daily News June 19, 2022


The National Unity Government (NUG)

  • The Ministry of Labour-NUG announced that workers at home and abroad can make reports on their Facebook page.

  • During the meeting with the Acting Local Public Administration Central Committee, the Union Prime Minister called for activities that would inform the international community about the military junta’s violence on the ground.

  • On Friday evening, Gantgaw Township Public Administration announced that 6 people from Nyaungle village had been killed by the junta army and 5 of them had been burned to death with their hands tied behind their backs.

Revolutionary activities

  • Myanmar residents in Korea protested in front of the Indonesian Embassy on Saturday morning against humanitarian aid to Myanmar refugees through the military junta.

  • On State Councilor Daw Aung San Su Kyi’s birthday, there would be a campaign with multi-religious marches to respective religious buildings across the country.

  • In some townships of Chin State, threatening letters to terrorists have been sent by local groups named “Devils”.

  • The strike committees have called for prayer events at local religious buildings such as pagodas, churches and mosques for the liberation of the country.

  • In Kyaukbadaung township of Mandalay region, the junta army shot and killed Ko Min Thu Mg Mg, a member of the Mandalay Independent Association, at 1 a.m. Thursday.

  • Ahead of State Councilor Daw Aung San Su Kyi’s 77th birthday, Mandalay residents expressed their desire for the release of all political prisoners and national leaders, amid tight security measures by the junta’s armed forces in all the city.

  • In Hpakant township, Kachin state, a combined gathering of gemstone miners marched against the military dictatorship on Saturday, holding an anti-junta banner.

  • According to Yangon Khit Thit Media, War of Heroes PDF Game has been in the top 10 of US App Store for 5 days with revenue over 17,000 USD.

  • In Pakkoku, Magwe region, PDF confiscated Yesagyo township police officer’s car from Khinema garage on Friday noon. According to reports, the junta police force arrested the owner of the garage and the workers.

  • In Ganggaw township, Kan village junta army came under mine attack by local PDFs on Friday and Saturday. According to reports, 3 junta soldiers died and 5 others were injured.

  • In the Sagaing area, a rally from Yinmabin North staged a march on Friday night and encouraged the public to stir up the revolution.

  • Karenni People’s Embrace released a video in which MDP soldier Pho Taung said members of the junta’s armed forces were desperate and wanted to kill themselves. He also urged them to leave the military junta and join the public.

  • In the Ayeyarwaddy area, the junta’s armed forces sealed off the house of Ko Aung Mya Than, a Maubin-based Ayeyarwaddy Times journalist, on 15 June.

  • In Pindaya in Shan South, U Kyaw Nyein, a USDP MP and junta informant, was shot dead at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday.

Ethnic armed organizations

  • In Kyaukgyi township of Bago region under the National Union Karen-Brigade KNU (3), a combined force of KNLA and PDF attacked the junta military camp in Kyauksayit village at 5am on Friday.

  • In Myawaddy Township, Kayin State, there were lice in the rice of 9 PDF members detained at Wawlay Police Station.

  • At 6 a.m. on June 15, a combined KNLA force attacked the military camp of the Yungbingon junta on the side of the Myawaddy-Kawkarait Asia road. According to reports, 2 junta soldiers died and 3 others were injured. As for the combined force, it lost a limb.

The Military Council

  • On Saturday, Radio Free Asia aired a video in which members of the junta’s armed forces told each other about their mass murders by slitting, cutting off heads and shooting people, along with some photos.

  • Junta media said unidentified people set fire to the Lailinpe Ward 1 High School in Matupi Township, Chin State on June 15.

  • Junta leader Min Aung Hlaing said their call for peace had two purposes, adopting strong practices of multi-party democracy and building the union based on democracy and federalism.

  • In the township of Hlaingthaya in the Yangon region, the military junta has banned the circulation of battery-powered bicycles, in addition to that of motorcycles.

  • The Myanmar junta’s embassy in Tokyo announced that the Ministry of Commerce had launched a website with information on services, trade and investment.

  • On Saturday, the junta peace team met with the Pao National Liberation Organization-PNLO delegation led by Vice President Kun Tun Tin for the second day in Nay Pyi Taw.

Summer on June 18

  • A video was released with evidence of war crimes committed by the junta’s armed forces. Consequently, the military junta could face increasing pressure from the international community.

  • Amid constant oppression, there were still anti-junta protests in Mandalay. As for the other states and regions, they had armed revolution guerrilla activities, rather than rallies against the military dictatorship.

  • In Sagaing, Magwe, Chin, Karenni and Kayin, there was fighting between the junta army and local defense forces. Apparently both sides lost members.

The Spanish Consulate in Cuba will charge its services in euros from July


The Consulate of Spain in Cuba announced this Friday that from July 1 it will begin to charge its consular services in euros, only in cash and with the exact amount.

Services such as making passports will cost 30 euros ($31.40 at the current exchange rate), visas 80 euros ($83.73), legalizations 10 euros ($10.47), among others, such as said the Consulate on its Twitter account.

The Spanish diplomatic representation did not explain the reason for this decision, which comes a week after several Latin American embassies in Cuba announced the suspension of their consular services following a directive from the Central Bank of Cuba (BCC).

BCC Instruction 1/2022 establishes that they can invoice their consular services “in foreign currency or in Cuban pesos (CUP)”, as they establish themselves.

But this measure does not allow them to exchange in international currencies the income from consular procedures invoiced in Cuban pesos. UPC cannot be converted to other countries.

Embassies and consulates that decide to invoice consular services in CUP will only be able to “deposit the funds in an account in this currency”, warns the instruction, which puts an end to a hitherto routine practice.

The BCC also indicated that “from the Cuban peso accounts of embassies and consulates” it will not be possible to make “transfers to accounts in freely convertible currency, nor payments abroad”.

The freely convertible currency is a virtual currency valid only in Cuba and is a benchmark for currencies. It has been in use in the country since late 2019 and is valid in a network of stores selling groceries, household appliances and other items.

The decision of the BCC has been critically received by some embassies because it prevents them from transferring to their country in foreign currency the money obtained in CUP as they have been doing so far as consular collection for the services that they provide.

The measure is linked, according to various sources, to the difference between the official rate – one dollar is equal to 24 pesos – and the exchange rate in the informal market where the USD currently costs around 100 CUP.

Meanwhile, the Euro is officially traded at 27 pesos and in the informal market at 115 CUP.

The exchange of national currencies for foreign currencies at the official rate and the exit of these currencies from the country have been disadvantageous for Cuba, these sources added.


Anurag Thakur urges young people not to resort to violence over Agnipath program

June 18, 2022 8:36 p.m. STI

New Delhi [India]Jun 18 (ANI): Union Minister Anurag Thakur on Saturday called on the youths, who are protesting against the Agnipath scheme recently launched by the Armed Forces Recruitment Centre, not to engage in violence and said that the government is “listening seriously to their concerns”.
Protests erupted in various parts of the country after the program was launched. In some parts of the country, protests have turned violent where rock throwing has been seen in some places while trains have been set on fire in some places including Bihar and Telangana.
Speaking to ANI, Thakur said the Ministry of Youth and Sports is considering offering something to Agniveers when they retire from service in the armed forces.
“I call on young people to say that violence is not the right way. The government is seriously listening to your concerns. The Ministry of Youth and Sports is also planning to do something for them when they come after 4 years of service to provide intensive courses and to provide training for those who want to become physical education teachers,” he said.
“15,000 positions for physical education teachers are vacant in various states. We are also thinking in this direction,” he added.
Meanwhile, Defense Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday approved a proposal to reserve 10% of Defense Ministry vacancies for “Agniveers” who meet the required eligibility criteria.

According to the Defense Minister’s Office, the reserve will be implemented in the Indian Coast Guard and Civilian Defense Stations, as well as the 16 Public Sector Defense Companies.
The ministry’s announcement comes amid protests that have erupted following the Centre’s launch of the Agnipath scheme which is a new recruitment procedure for the Defense Forces. Notably, protests have turned violent in many parts of the country.
Earlier today the Home Office announced that the ‘Agniveers’ would be absorbed into the Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) and Assam Rifles at the end of their four-year term in the army.
The MHA also announced three years of age relaxation, beyond the Agniveers’ upper age limit for recruitment into the CAPFs and Assam Rifles.
For the first batch of Agniveers, the age easing will be 5 years beyond the upper age limit.
On June 14, the Union Cabinet approved a scheme to recruit young Indians to serve in the three services of the Armed Forces called Agnipath and the youths selected under this scheme will be known as Agniveers. (ANI)

Money laundering watchdog removes Malta from watch list – Expat Guide to Germany

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an international organization that coordinates global efforts to combat money laundering and terrorist financing, said on Friday it had removed Malta from its watch list of countries subject to increased monitoring.

Placed under surveillance in 2021, Malta leaves the list after having implemented an “action plan which it has now completed” leaving it “better placed to fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism”, a said FATF President Marcus Pleyer after the organization’s four-day meeting in Berlin.

Malta has made particular progress in detecting inaccurate company ownership information and “prosecuting cases of money laundering for tax purposes using financial intelligence”, the FATF said in a statement.

Malta, which for years has fought accusations of being a tax haven, suffered another blow last year when it was added to the list.

In 2017, more than a dozen European media organizations in an investigation dubbed the “Malta Files” accused the country of being a “pirate base for insider tax evasion”. the EU” – allegations denied by Malta.

Gibraltar, meanwhile, was added to the gray list due to what Pleyer described as “tragic deficiencies”.

“Gibraltar needs to take a number of steps, including focusing on the gatekeepers of the financial system, particularly gambling operators and lawyers,” he said.

The British Overseas Territory will need to show progress by “demonstrating that it is more actively and successfully pursuing final forfeiture orders, through criminal or civil proceedings based on financial investigations”, the FATF said.

A total of 23 countries are on the FATF gray list, which can have a serious impact on foreign investment in countries and their international reputation.

The organization’s blacklist includes only two countries, Iran and North Korea.

Pakistan, which had hoped to be removed from the gray list at the Berlin meeting, was disappointed.

However, the FATF welcomed Pakistan’s progress and hinted at a change in status if its next follow-up visit is successful.

“After much work by the Pakistani authorities,” the country has “largely addressed all 34 action points” in a plan agreed with the organization, Pleyer said.

“Pakistan has demonstrated that it is currently conducting terrorist financing investigations and prosecutions against senior leaders of UN-designated terrorist groups and is pursuing money laundering investigations and prosecutions in accordance with its profile of risk,” he added.

Women drivers in Khashoggi: the tumultuous reign of the Saudi crown prince

Riyadh: saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman was portrayed by some in the West as a reformer when he became the ultra-conservative country’s de facto leader five years ago.
But the honeymoon ended abruptly after dissident Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was brutally murdered at the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul in 2018.
Here is an overview of the main changes:
On June 21, 2017, King Salman named his then 31-year-old son, Mohammed, crown prince, crowning the meteoric rise of the ambitious defense minister.
It comes amid a major fallout with Qatar, which Riyadh accuses of supporting terrorism and being too close to Saudi Arabia’s arch-rival Iran.
In November 2017, around 380 royals, senior officials and business tycoons were arrested in a dramatic purge billed as an anti-corruption campaign.
Many are held for weeks at the Riyad Ritz-Carlton hotel. Most are released after agreeing major financial settlements.
In September 2017, the monarchy ended the world’s only ban on female drivers by announcing that they could drive from June 2018.
Cinemas are also reopened, music concerts are held with mixed audiences allowed, and women are allowed in sports stadiums.
The enthusiasm aroused by the announcements is somewhat dampened by the repression of activists who had campaigned for the right to drive.
In November 2017, Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri announced in a televised address from Riyadh that he was resigning, citing Iran’s “grip” on his country.
Saudi Arabia is accused of forcing his hand in an attempt to weaken the Iran-backed Hezbollah movement that shares power in Lebanon.
Hariri is spending two weeks in Riyadh amid speculation he is under house arrest. After the intervention of France, he returned to Lebanon and canceled his resignation.
Riyadh entered the war in Yemen in 2015 leading an Arab coalition supporting the internationally recognized government against the Iran-backed Houthi rebels.
Saudi Arabia’s involvement in the war is escalating the conflict, which is spreading across the country and producing what the United Nations calls the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.
The coalition is denounced for air strikes, particularly on markets and hospitals, which cause heavy civilian casualties. The intervention fails to rout the rebels.
In March 2018, the prince embarked on his first overseas tour as heir, visiting Egypt and Britain, where he had lunch with Queen Elizabeth II.
Prince Mohammed then spends more than two weeks in the United States, meeting President Donald Trump and visiting tech leaders in Silicon Valley. He also travels to France and Spain.
On October 2, 2018, Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered and dismembered inside the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul, sparking global outcry.
Prince Mohammed denies ordering the murder. The government blames rogue security officials.
A Saudi court sentences five people to death for the murder, but they are later sentenced to prison terms.
The case turns the crown prince into an outcast in the West, with a UN reporter and the CIA both linking him to the murder.
Energy giant Saudi Aramco completes the world’s largest IPO in December 2019.
The move is key to Prince Mohammed’s ambitious strategy to overhaul the oil-dependent economy.
In April 2021, Prince Mohammad provokes surprise by declaring that he wants to have “good relations” with Iran. The two sworn enemies begin talks in Iraq.
A fifth round of talks in April 2022, hailed by Iran as “positive and serious”, suggests that the Islamic republic and the Sunni kingdom could resume broken diplomatic relations in 2016.
Yemen’s Houthi rebels and the Saudi-led coalition agree to a two-month ceasefire starting April 2, 2022.
Yemeni President, backed by Saudi Arabia, Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi, announces from Riyadh that he is handing over power to a new leadership council that will negotiate with the Houthis on a lasting peace.
In June, the truce is renewed for two more months.
On June 14, the White House announces that US President Joe Biden will meet the crown prince in Riyadh, signaling an end to attempts to ostracize him over Khashoggi’s death.

At the helm of oil and urban affairs, Hardeep Singh Puri is today the guest of Adda

As Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs and Petroleum and Natural Gas with ministerial rank, diplomat-turned-politician Hardeep Singh Puri heads departments and ministries that play a critical role in influencing the India’s growth story.

As a diplomat and former Union civil aviation minister, Puri – the Express Adda guest on Friday – was one of four ministers tasked with coordinating the government’s massive effort to evacuate Indian students stranded in Ukraine after Russia attacked the first in February. 24.

In his role as Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Puri is tasked with increasing domestic production of crude oil and natural gas, while creating a gas-based economy that involves a renewed focus on improving availability. and the use of cleaner fossil resources. fuel.

With the recent reduction in excise duties on petrol and diesel and government intervention to ensure the addition of heavily discounted Russian crude oil into its overall supply basket, the Minister has his work cut out for him. ensure that the impact of the global fuel price spiral is as transitory as possible, given the inflationary spiral.

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Inflation based on the retail or consumer price index has remained above the Reserve Bank of India’s upper 6% range for five consecutive months, prompting the central bank to raise policy rates and killing what little demand the economy has seen as India emerges from the Covid-19 pandemic.

As Union Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs, Puri has an overall mandate on urban infrastructure development, at a time when infrastructure in most Indian cities is under immense pressure, including resources. water supply, sanitation, housing for all. , as well as the task of leveraging the use of data, technology and innovation in city planning and management.

An Indian foreign service officer in 1974, Puri also served as India’s permanent representative to the United Nations between 2009 and 2013 before joining the Bharatiya Janata party in 2014.

As part of its urban re-engineering mandate, Puri is in charge of major Narendra Modi government flagship projects such as Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana – Urban (PMAY-U), Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana and Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, among others. His ministry is also overseeing the ambitious Central Vista redevelopment project to remodel India’s seat of power at Raisina Hill.

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At Express Adda, Puri will speak with Anant Goenka, Executive Director, The Indian Express Group and P Vaidyanathan Iyer, Editor-in-Chief, The Indian Express.

The Express Adda is a series of informal interactions organized by The Indian Express Group and features those at the center of change. When the talks were held online during the Covid-19 pandemic, Union External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, Union Road Transport and Highways and MSMEs Minister Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister of Union Education Ramesh Pokhriyal, AIIMS Director Dr. Randeep Guleria and former Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian were among the guests at e-Adda.

Distinguished guests of past editions of Express Adda include Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Nobel Laureates Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo, Chief Economic Adviser Krishnamurthy Subramanian, cancer scientist and award-winning author Pulitzer Prize winner Dr Siddhartha Mukherjee, and cricketer Cheteshwar Pujara.

FCMB provides 300,000 underbanked Nigerians with N40 billion micro-loans

Lagos: June 15, 2022: First City Monument Bank (FCMB), through EasyAgents, its agent banking network and other channels, has successfully integrated and empowered one million financially excluded Nigerians, guaranteeing them a better and more sustainable future through access to financial services. services.

As part of its financial inclusion program, the Bank has provided microloans worth N40 billion to over 300,000 beneficiaries, including 200,000 women traders across the country, who have had access to over US$51.28 million (N28.7 billion) of the total loan amount.

Committing to providing affordable and sustainable financial services to unbanked and underbanked Nigerians, FCMB Managing Director, Ms. Yemisi Edun said:

“We are proud of our important role in integrating Nigeria’s huge informal economy, led by smallholder farmers, traders, artisans and other small and medium enterprises, into the formal economy through affordable and sustainable access to financial services. Access to financial services promotes prosperity and enables disadvantaged and vulnerable people to improve their lives, create wealth and reduce poverty. We will therefore continue to champion and implement initiatives that deepen access to affordable and sustainable financial services in our local communities to empower individuals and businesses.”

In fostering financial inclusion, First City Monument Bank has embraced partnerships as a critical success criteria. Last year, the Bank partnered with the World Savings Banks Institute (WSBI) to deepen banking and financial inclusion through branches by rolling out an integrated savings account – “Easy Account” – to empower two million farmers by 2023. Under the first phase of the partnership, covering more than 150,000 unbanked and underbanked farmers in five states, grantees receive funding and training support through the through agricultural agents operating under FCMB’s agency banking proposal. The states are Kaduna, Kano, Nasarawa, Ogun and Oyo. In addition, FCMB has also recently signed a partnership agreement with Shee-Coops, an international organization that promotes the active participation of women in cooperatives around the world, to provide funding to millions of women over the next five years. years to pursue opportunities that improve their livelihoods.

FCMB has invested in nearly 10,000 branch bankers who bring financial services to the streets and doorsteps of millions of Nigerians in peri-urban and rural areas. They are currently leading the integration and empowerment of unbanked and underbanked Nigerians.

Statement by Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on President Biden’s trip to Israel, the West Bank and Saudi Arabia


JUNE 14, 2022

President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. will travel to the Middle East region July 13-16 to reinforce the United States’ unwavering commitment to Israel’s security and prosperity and to attend a summit of the Gulf Cooperation Council plus Egypt, Iraq and Jordan (known as GCC+3). He will also meet with counterparts from across the region to advance US security, economic and diplomatic interests.

The President will begin his trip to Israel, where he will meet with Israeli leaders to discuss security, prosperity and Israel’s growing integration into the greater region. The President will also travel to the West Bank to consult with the Palestinian Authority and reiterate his strong support for a two-state solution, with equal measures of security, freedom and opportunity for the Palestinian people.

The president will then travel to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, which is the current chairman of the GCC and the venue for this gathering of nine leaders from across the region, at the invitation of King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud. The President appreciates King Salman’s leadership and his invitation. He looks forward to this important visit to Saudi Arabia, which has been a strategic partner of the United States for nearly eight decades.

While in Saudi Arabia, the President will discuss a range of bilateral, regional and global issues. These include support for the UN-brokered truce in Yemen, which has led to the most peaceful period since the war began seven years ago. He will also discuss ways to expand regional economic and security cooperation, including promising new infrastructure and climate initiatives, as well as deterring threats from Iran, advancing human rights and ensuring global energy and food security. The President looks forward to presenting his positive view of US engagement in the region in the months and years to come.

This visit to the Middle East region culminates months of diplomacy and follows the President’s meeting with ASEAN leaders at the White House, his trip to the Republic of Korea and Japan, the Quad Summit, his welcoming of the Summit of the Americas last week in Los Angeles, and his visit next week to Europe for the G7 and NATO summits.

Japan & Black LA Initiative: A Conversation with Senator Bradford

State Sen. Steve Bradford (D-Gardena) shared some of his memories of visiting Japan and growing up in Gardena during a discussion at Cal State Dominguez Hills. (Office of Senator Bradford)

On May 14, California State University Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) and the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles co-sponsored an event featuring California State Senator Steven Bradford.

The event was held on the CSUDH campus and included remarks from Bradford and a panel discussion moderated by CSUDH Chair Dr. Thomas A. Parham with Bradford, African Studies Department Chair Dr. Donna Nicol, and Consul General Akira Muto.

In his opening remarks, Bradford shared his childhood experiences visiting Japan, where his grandparents lived, and growing up in Gardena, where Japanese Americans were among his earliest friends. He reflected on the shared history of the African American and Japanese American community in the Southern California region and his experiences bridging the two cultures in his various roles, including as a member of the Gardena City Council and a Senator. of the State of California.

During the roundtable, Parham discussed a variety of topics, including the Japanese Consulate’s Japan & Black LA initiative, Japanese-Black community relations, multi-community relations, and the future of relations between the two communities.

Muto shared the origins of the Japan & Black LA initiative as a partnership with black United Methodist congregations facilitated by California Pacific Conference Western District Superintendent Mark Nakagawa, and the many events that have taken place. place since November 2020.

From right: Consul General Akira Muto, State Senator Steven Bradford, African Studies Department Chair Dr. Donna Nicol, and CSUDH President Dr. Thomas A. Parham. (Courtesy of CSUDH)

Nicol shared his passion for encouraging students to seek connections beyond their own communities to broaden their horizons. All panelists echoed the importance of breaking down barriers to overcome prejudice and increase harmony in society by strengthening dialogue between different ethnic groups.

Panelists discussed potential approaches to developing relationships and the range of opportunities in various sectors, including trade, business development, entertainment and culture. Internships, externships and international travel were also identified as key avenues for developing greater understanding, especially among students and younger generations.

The roundtable was followed by questions from the audience and a networking reception.

World Trade Organization members urged to address needs of women entrepreneurs – News

Director-General says women must be at the center of re-globalization


Published: Mon 13 Jun 2022, 11:05

World Trade Organization (WTO) Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala says members of the organization must step up efforts to ensure trade and trade rules better serve women amid disruption caused by multiple seizures.

She made the remarks at the joint WTO-International Trade Center (ITC) event titled “Unlocking Trade for Women’s Empowerment and Sustainable Development” held on 12 June, the first day of the 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12).

The event highlighted the views of entrepreneurs and enabling organizations to effectively increase women’s participation in international trade.

“We need to deepen and diversify supply networks and bring more countries and communities from the economic margins to the mainstream. In this process, which I see as re-globalization, women must be at the center,” Okonjo-Iweala said in her opening speech at the event.

“Liberating trade for women’s empowerment and sustainable development is not just the right thing to do. It is an economic question. It is a social problem. This is the key question,” she said, noting the potential increases in global output, wages and employment when the gender divide is addressed.

“A strong and effective CMO is essential for these women, which is one more reason why achieving CM12 results this week is so important,” Okonjo-Iweala said. “We want to make sure people know that the WTO is about people. It’s not just about rules – it’s about rules that help people.”


State Department Diplomatic Security Service agents return to Kyiv, Ukraine

  • Foreign governments have started to reopen their embassies in Kyiv.
  • The United States is among them, returning a new ambassador and other diplomats to the Ukrainian capital.
  • The diplomatic security service is also on the ground to protect the embassy and its staff.

While most of the fighting has moved to eastern and southern Ukraine, life in Kyiv and other Ukrainian cities has resumed.

Foreign countries have started to reopen their diplomatic missions in Ukraine despite the constant threat of long-range Russian strikes. The United States followed suit, reopening the US embassy in Kyiv and appointing a new ambassador.

Because the United States is a major supporter of the Ukrainian government and military and because Russia remains a threat throughout Ukraine – Ukrainian security services constantly track down Russian supporters and collaborators – the reopened embassy, other diplomatic installations and Americans in the country could be targeted.

As a result, the White House is considering sending US special operators to guard the facility.

Special operators in Kyiv?

A photograph shows the US Embassy building in Kyiv, January 24, 2022.

The US Embassy in Kyiv on January 24, 2022.

Sergei Supinsky/AFP via Getty Images

According to the Wall Street Journal, the State Department and the Department of Defense plan to send American special operations teams to guard the American embassy in Kyiv and to protect American diplomats in Ukraine.

Any deployment of special operators would supplement the security teams of the State Department’s Diplomatic Security Service. Insider understands that special agents from the Diplomatic Security Service are among the personnel who returned to Kyiv.

While the State Department is in ‘close contact’ with the Pentagon regarding security requirements for the reopened diplomatic mission in Kyiv, no decision has been made on whether to send US troops to Ukraine to protect the embassy. , the State Department said.

The Pentagon echoed that statement, saying no decision has been made and there is no specific proposal “regarding the return of U.S. service members to Ukraine for this or any other purpose” being debated. at higher levels of defense.

Russian tank T-72 in Kyiv Ukraine

Passers-by look at a destroyed T-72 tank, part of an exhibition of Russian military vehicles in Kyiv, June 7, 2022.

Aleksandr Gusev/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

“As a matter of principle, we do not discuss specific security measures at our facilities, but the department always ensures that our posts have the appropriate security resources, as determined by our security professionals, to complement country requirements. host as detailed in the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations,” a State Department spokesperson told Insider.

“The safety and security of American personnel is among our highest priorities,” the spokesperson added.

Since a mob of Iranian students stormed the US Embassy in Tehran in 1979 and captured more than 60 Americans who were held hostage for 444 days, US special operations units have created emergency plans for most US diplomatic facilities.

Joint Special Operations Command Tier 1 special mission units – primarily the Army’s Delta Force and the Navy’s Naval Special Warfare Development Group (formerly SEAL Team 6) – are responsible for counter-terrorism operations and hostage rescue. If an American diplomatic mission were attacked or if American diplomats were taken hostage anywhere in the world, it would probably be these two units that would react.

Protect diplomats in war zones

Embassy of the Diplomatic Security Service Niamey Niger

A Diplomatic Security Service deputy regional security officer, in blue plaid, with Nigerien police and security personnel during an exercise in Niger, April 12, 2018.

US State Department

Under the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, the primary responsibility for external security and protection of embassies and consulates rests with the host government – for example, US law enforcement agencies are tasked with ensure that nothing happens to Chinese or Russian embassies in DC, and this also applies to accredited foreign personnel.

With respect to perimeter security at U.S. diplomatic missions, an initiative called the Local Guard Program provides exterior security, including perimeter access control and early threat identification and deterrence. There are also US personnel guarding diplomatic missions.

The Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service complements host nation security and support and is responsible for the security of diplomatic facilities and locations, including physical, technical, and procedural security.

Diplomatic Security Service Mobile Security Deployment Team

Special agents from the Diplomatic Security Service’s Office of Mobile Security Deployments help secure a street in Manhattan, September 23, 2018.

US State Department

Diplomatic Security Service Special Agents, known as Regional Security Officers Overseas, work alongside other DSS team members – including security engineers and technical security specialists — and Marines assigned to the Marine Corps Embassy Security Group “to provide flexible and effective security,” the State Department spokesperson added.

The service is the law enforcement and security arm of the State Department, and its approximately 2,500 active special agents have four primary sets of missions: protecting U.S. diplomats, investigating passports and visas, ensuring the integrity of classified US travel documents and conducting security background checks.

With offices in 29 U.S. cities and 270 locations around the world, the Diplomatic Security Service has the broadest global responsibilities within the U.S. federal law enforcement community.

Stavros Atlamazoglou is a defense journalist specializing in special operations, a veteran of the Hellenic Army (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army HQ) and a graduate of Johns Hopkins University.

A young Indonesian cycles 5,000 km on his pilgrimage to the Three Holy Mosques


By Hassan Cheruppa

Saudi Gazette

JEDDAH — For Muhammad Fauzan, the spiritual Hajj journey of a lifetime was an arduous bicycle journey of almost 5,000 kilometers between Indonesia and Saudi Arabia, taking more than seven and a half months.

The young Indonesian traveled from Magelang, Central Java on November 4, 2021 and performed Umrah after reaching Makkah last week. He will join other pilgrims from Indonesia, the most populous Muslim nation, which is sending the largest contingent of 100,051 pilgrims for the upcoming Hajj. So far, about 21,000 Indonesian pilgrims have arrived in Medina.

“My intention is to perform Hajj and visit the Three Holy Mosques of Islam – the Grand Mosque in Mecca, the Prophet’s Mosque in Medina and the Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. After performing Hajj, I have intend to continue my cycling trip to Palestine to visit Aqsa Mosque and also visit other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states,” he said.

In an interview with Saudi Gazette, Fauzan said his cycling pilgrimage is the best example of how Almighty God makes things possible that ordinary people think are impossible.

“Everyone told me that it was impossible for you to accomplish this difficult mission, but now I can show them that God made it possible for me. My message is also that we can make anything we think impossible possible if we have the good will and sincere supplication to God coupled with hard work to achieve the goal,” he said.

Fauzan, who holds a master’s degree and knows Arabic well, said he thought it was the best way to perform Hajj without long years of waiting.

“Normally, Indonesians have to wait around 40 years to perform Hajj after registering. saving money on my teaching salary,” Fauzan said.

Fauzan works as a teacher of religion and Quran memorization after earning his bachelor’s degree in Arabic language and Islamic studies from Makassar University in South Sulawisi province, eastern Indonesia.

“My main intention is to perform Hajj and pray for living relatives as well as family and loved ones.” Fauzan has a wife and two children – a son and a daughter, born after he left for the trip of a lifetime.

Speaking about his travel experiences, Fauzan said he left his hometown after attending the graduation ceremony after earning a master’s degree in personal status affairs from the Islamic University of Malang.

The trip started with savings amounting to 10 million Indonesian rupiah (2,567 SR). He also earned some extra money to cover his travel expenses by selling traditional herbal medicines he brought from Indonesia, in addition to doing tastings at mosques along his route from Magelang.

“My first destination was Jakarta, which is almost 500 km from my hometown. I traveled from Jakarta to Bandan, from where I took a ferry to the island of Sumatra, and after crossing the province of Jambi, I reached the island of Batang, then I took the ferry to reach Singapore,” he said.

Despite the boredom and fatigue of the journey, Fauzan observed fasting during the month of Ramadan and used to break his fast at mosques along his routes in Singapore and Malaysia. He joined Eid Al-Fitr celebrations in Malaysia.

Fauzan also remembers the warm welcome he received at the Indonesian embassies in Singapore and Malaysia. “During the reception in Kuala Lumpur, Indonesian Ambassador to Malaysia Hermono accompanied me on a bicycle to express his solidarity with the mission,” he said.

Fauzan said his trip was mostly in the jungle and he encountered several animals, mostly monkeys. “I kept no weapon with me to defend myself, only the courage to accomplish my mission with the conviction that “where there is a will, there is a way”. The weather was a bit harsh and exposed to rain in some areas and I rested and slept most of the time during the day after erecting a tent by the roadside,” he said. .

He noted that the trip was mostly at night. He prepared tea and light food in the tent and used to buy lunch from restaurants.

Fauzan said he was expecting the permit to perform the Hajj soon. The Indonesian Hajj Mission in Jeddah has started the necessary procedures in this regard. The 28-year-old enthusiast said he would soon cycle to Medina to visit the Prophet’s Mosque and greet the Prophet (peace_be_upon_him).

Referring to his plan after the Hajj, Fauzan said the priority after the Hajj was to visit Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest shrine in Islam. “I also plan to visit GCC states outside of Palestine before returning to Jakarta,” he said.

Fauzan recounted the difficulties he faced in obtaining permission to travel to Myanmar after cycling a long way through Thailand.

“All my attempts to get an entry visa to Myanmar were in vain and so I was forced to stop the cycling trip to Thailand after cycling nearly 4,000 km and so I took the flight from Bangkok to Riyadh on May 26.”

Upon his arrival in Riyadh, he was received by Indonesian Ambassador Abdul Aziz Ahmad and Deputy Chief of Mission and Chargé d’Affaires Arief Hidayat.

He took a week to reach Makkah from Riyadh, cycling nearly 900 km and from there cycling to Jeddah and visited the Consulate General of Indonesia where he was welcomed by Indonesian Consul General Eko Hartono and other consulate officials.

India records 8,582 new Covid cases in past 24 hours, active tally of 44,513

India recorded 8,582 new coronavirus infections, taking the total number of COVID-19 cases to 4, 32, 22,017, while active cases rose to 44,513, according to data from the Ministry of Health in the Union updates Sunday.

The death toll climbed to 5,24,761 with four fatalities, according to data updated as of 8 a.m.

Active cases account for 0.10 percent of the total number of infections, while the national COVID-19 cure rate has been recorded at 98.66 percent, the ministry said.

An increase of 4,143 cases was recorded in the number of active COVID-19 cases within 24 hours.

The daily positivity rate was recorded at 2.71% while the weekly positivity rate was also recorded at 2.02%, according to the ministry.

The number of people who have recovered from the disease has climbed to

4, 26, 52,743, while the case fatality rate was 1.21%.

The cumulative doses administered in the country so far under the nationwide COVID-19 vaccination campaign exceeded 195.07 crore.

India’s COVID-19 tally had crossed the 20 lakh mark on August 7, 2020, 30 lakh on August 23, 40 lakh on September 5 and 50 lakh on September 16. It topped 60 lakh on September 28, 70 lakh on October 11. , crossed 80 lakh on Oct 29, 90 lakh on Nov 20 and broke above the crore mark on Dec 19.

The country passed the grim milestone of two crores on May 4 and three crores on June 23 last year.

(Only the title and image of this report may have been edited by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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15 people killed, 4 injured in Afghanistan last week – Pajhwok Afghan News

KABUL (Pajhwok): Nineteen people were killed and injured in Afghanistan last week, while opinions expressed by different countries and international organizations regarding Afghanistan showed that the country was still under their attention.

Major developments

  • Afghanistan must not be forgotten: OSCE
  • The current Afghan government is heading in the wrong direction: Germany
  • Different sources have insisted on girls’ education and women’s rights in Afghanistan
  • India and Iran stress inclusive government and continued aid to Afghan people
  • Central Asian states pledged to join efforts to solve problems in Afghanistan
  • India close to resuming diplomatic presence in Afghanistan
  • Three former government officials returned to Afghanistan
  • The World Bank has approved three projects worth $793 million for Afghanistan
  • Humand Rights Watch expressed concern about the rights of women and girls in Afghanistan
  • Fifteen people were killed and four others injured in Afghanistan last week.


Last week, 15 people were killed and four others injured in Afghanistan last week.

According to reports, one civilian, five security personnel were killed and another civilian was injured in a roadside explosion in Kandahar province last week. The landmine was laid in the past. A man was also killed following an explosion in Kunduz province.

According to local sources, unidentified gunmen killed two people in Baghlan and Kunduz provinces while the bodies of three people were found in Baghlan last week.

Reports showed that Pakistani forces shot dead a man in the Ango Ada area when the person killed wanted to cross the Durand Line into Pakistan.

One person was killed and another injured following a violent dispute between two families in Uruzgan province.

In Nangahrar, security forces killed one person for an alleged robbery and injured two others.

According to the weekly Pajhwok, six people were killed and four injured in Afghanistan last week.

This stems from the fact that before August 15 of last year, hundreds of people were killed and injured every week in Afghanistan.

Foreign meetings on Afghanistan

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) last week discussed the situation in Afghanistan and its impact on the region. The meeting said that Afghansitan should not be forgotten.

Afghanistan’s permanent representative to the OSCE, Manizha Bakhtari, expressed deep concern over the caretaker government’s policy of failing to respect the fundamental freedom of girls and women. But the interim Afghan government said the rights of women and girls were not being violated.

Reports showed that US Special Representative for Afghanistan Thomas West met with Arab Foreign Minister Ahmad Ali Shaikh and discussed latest humanitarian situation and education of Afghan girls. The Foreign Minister of the United Arab Emirates pledged support for Afghanistan in the field of health, humanitarian aid and food supply.

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock at a press briefing in Islamabad said current Afghan government was heading in the wrong direction and would not be recognized until it changed its position.

“The international community must stand together and tell the Taliban loud and clear that you are heading in the wrong direction. And as long as they go down this path, there is no room for normalization and even recognition of the Taliban as legitimate leaders,” Baerbock asserted.

Qatari Foreign Minister Shaikh Mohammad Bin Al Sani met with US Foreign Secretary Antony Blinken in Washington and discussed political, economic, girls’ education and women’s rights situation in Afghanistan.

Indian and Iranian foreign ministers during a meeting in New Delhi appointed vital the formation of an inclusive government in Afghanistan and underscored support for the Afghansitan in a difficult economic situation.

Similarly, the foreign ministers of China, Uzbekistan, Kazakistan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan, at a meeting in Kazakistan, called peace in Afghanistan vital for regional peace and demanded efforts by the countries of Central Asia to help solve the problems in Afghanistan.

Meetings of Foreign Officials in Afghanistan

UN Secretary General Special Representatives for Afghansitan Deborha Lyons during a Meet with Acting Foreign Minister Ameer Khan Muttaqi said that UNAMA and the United States do not want to weaken the banking sector in Afghanistan and stressed the negotiated settlement of the current problems facing the banking sector in Afghanistan.

Qater Ameer’s national security adviser, Mohammad Bin Ahmad Almosnad, in a meeting with Foreign Minister Muttaqi, said the Afghan was Qatat’s strategic partner and promised the strengthening of bilateral ties that have a long story.

Indian diplomatic mission

Last week, Indian media reported this Indian was closed to make a decision regarding the resumption of his diplomatic mission in Afghanistan. This comes as last week a delegation from the Indian Foreign Ministry arrived in Afghanistan.

During the visit, the delegation visited Indian development projects and met with Afghan interim government officials.

Former government officials return

Last week, some previous government officials – former minister of state Ghulam Farooq Wardak, former defense ministry spokesman Dawlat Waziri, former director of Da Afghanistan Breshna Shirkat Amanullah Ghalib – are returned to Afghanistan from foreign countries.

These people had returned as a result of the efforts of the Reconciliation Commission.

Women’s protests

After the fall of the previous government on August 15 last year, most government employees had not been recalled to their posts.

Last week, a group of IACSC staff raised objection and said that the interim government officials have not made any final decisions regarding the work of women in government institutions despite the fact that the officials had promised to make a decision in this regard.

Government officials, however, said efforts were being made to provide work for all through different resources to help solve people’s problems, including landlords. They said that currently employed women receive their salaries at home.

Human Rights Watch

Last week, Human Rights Watch (HRW) expressed concern about the violation of rights, especially of women and girls in Afghanistan, and highlighted the increased pressure from the international community on the current Afghan government.

HRW’s women’s rights officer said the international community should come together to tell the Taliban that they will defend the rights of Afghan women and girls in the right way.

But the Afghan government rejected HRW allegations of murder and violation of the rights of innocent people.

Continuity of aid

Last week, Saudi Arabia provided $30 million to the Afghan Trust Fund, which has been warmly welcomed by the interim Afghan government.

Last week, China provided 24 kilograms of rice to every family in Afghanistan. A total of 750 families have benefited from the aid.

In addition, the World Bank and the Afghanistan Reconstruction Fund have approved three projects for Afghanistan worth $793 million.


Hits: 33

Department of Consumer Affairs releases guidelines for advertisements

New Delhi, June 10 (SocialNews.XYZ) Seeking to provide greater clarity on various aspects related to what constitutes “misleading advertisements”, the Center said on Friday that the new guidelines also provide a framework for manufacturers, service providers, advertisers and advertising agencies.

“Advertising is of great importance to consumers. It has a very important paradigm for consumers. These guidelines provide an overview of how to deal with misleading advertisements, if they are harmful to the interest of consumers. For the to make it more explicit, to make it more clear so no one is caught off guard, they should know what the framework is, we’ve come up with these guidelines,” Consumer Secretary Rohit Kumar said.

Kumar was speaking to the media under the Central Consumer Protection Authority Guidelines (Prevention of Misleading Advertisements and Necessary Due Diligence for Approval of Advertisements), 2022 issued by the Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA ) late Thursday evening.

These guidelines are due to come into force on Friday.

In accordance with section 2(28) of the Consumer Protection Act 2019, the term “misleading” advertising means advertisements which falsely describe a product or service; makes a false warranty or is likely to mislead consumers as to the nature, substance, quantity or quality of a product or service; or conveys any express or implied statement that, if made by the manufacturer, seller or service provider thereof, would constitute an unfair trade practice; or deliberately conceals important information.

These guidelines provide various criteria for an advertisement to be considered valid and not misleading; provide clarity on bait ads, substitute ads, and free claim ads; setting the conditions to be observed when broadcasting bait ads and free complaint ads; prohibit substitute advertisements and list various factors to consider when posting advertisements specifically targeting children.

The guidelines also provide for various obligations of the manufacturer, service provider, advertiser and advertising agency.

“The product or service advertisement must indicate the source and date of the independent research or evaluation in the event that the claims in the advertisement are based on or supported by such research or evaluation; it must specify the diligence reasonable to make when approving advertisements and must reflect the genuine and reasonably current opinion of the individual, group or organization making such representation. The advertisement must be based on adequate information or experience with the identified goods, products or services,” he said.

Source: IANS

Department of Consumer Affairs releases guidelines for advertisements

About Gopi

Gopi Adusumilli is a programmer. He is the editor of SocialNews.XYZ and president of AGK Fire Inc.

He enjoys designing websites, developing mobile apps and publishing news articles from various authenticated news sources.

As for writing, he enjoys writing about current world politics and Indian movies. His future plans include developing SocialNews.XYZ into a news website that has no bias or judgment towards any.

He can be reached at [email protected]

Russia wants to strengthen economic cooperation with Pakistan: CG


The Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Karachi extends all possible support to the Pakistani side to strengthen bilateral contacts and cooperation for the benefit of both countries

KARACHI, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News – June 10, 2022): The Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Karachi extends all possible support to the Pakistani side to strengthen bilateral contacts and cooperation for the benefit of both countries.

To increase the bilateral volume, the two countries needed to expand the dimension of their economic cooperation. There was huge untapped potential in almost every area of ​​business partnership. Bilateral trade was mainly limited to basic goods, although many other products and services were available to offer to each other, said Consul General of the Russian Federation here Andrey V. Fedorov during an interaction with the media at the Consulate late Thursday evening.

He said Pakistan could export surgical instruments, leather and sporting goods to Russia. Pakistan also had huge potential in the information technology and pharmaceutical sectors. However, Pakistan was also keen to purchase cancer drugs due to their high efficacy and reasonable price.

The commercial attachés of the two countries have also worked hard to lift bilateral trade and economic cooperation to a new high level, he said.

He said his country is ready to provide all necessary assistance to execute the Pakistan Stream gas pipeline project from Karachi to Lahore.

The Russian envoy mentioned that his government is closely monitoring developments around Pakistan Steel Mills.

“We are awaiting the completion of the international tender and are ready to share the necessary information with Russian companies to prepare their bids for participation in the revival and modernization of MSPs,” he said, adding that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and Special Economic Zones offer huge opportunities. to strengthen our bilateral trade and investment.

The consul general said Pakistan and Russia could get another boost as last week Pakistani Finance Minister Dr Miftah Ismail expressed the Pakistani government’s interest in buying Russian oil.

“Russia is open to cooperation with any political party as long as the relations are mutually beneficial and constructive,” he reiterated.

He said Russia wants to develop relations with the whole world, including Pakistan. Russia considered Pakistan a friendly country and when friendly countries talk at the negotiating table, they agree on everything.

The General Council also answered various questions from the media.

Biloela family triumph should inspire amnesty for other refugees

With the return of the Murugappan family to Biloela, the Albanian government has shown that amnesty is possible for holders of bridging visas, writes Fabia Claridge.

TODAY IS A DAY of celebration for thousands of Australians as Priya, Nades, Kopika and Tharnicaa return to Biloela. Their long journey of suffering and abuse and today’s fanfare return to Biloela has been a very public affair.

It’s a story that resonates with us on a deeply human level, almost a fairy tale, with a Dark Lord. But today, media across the country are celebrating the compassionate action of a government minister. Social media is full of outbursts of goodwill, both for the Murugappan family and for the new Minister of Immigration, Andrew Giles.

We commend the Biloela community and the team of volunteers and friends behind this campaign for their tireless and relentless pursuit of this result. We are proud to be a generous and compassionate Australia.

Now that the party is over, we have to wonder what will happen next. Will the White Knight complete his task of giving permanent residency with a clear path to citizenship? Minister Andrew Giles has the power — will he use it?

In a statement on Twitter, Gilles said:

“As Immigration Minister, I am also thinking about how we can finally resolve this issue, so that the family can rebuild their lives in Biloela with the certainty they deserve. I am aware of the options available to best achieve this and will make my decision as soon as possible.

But while waiting for the result, let’s keep a thought for the thousands of others – families, sons, daughters, husbands, fathers, mothers – who are in the same difficult situation as the Murugappan family. They are the victims of a faulty and biased system. Their identities have been deliberately kept secret. We also know that they lived in fear of being deported to danger.

Many, like the Murugappan family, come from dangerous areas and are part of persecuted groups. We know from our own experience that they can be summoned to home affairs and tell them, “It won’t go well for you if you speak in public”. They suffer in fear and silence. It is not for us here to reveal the identity of those we know. But we can tell you this: many Australians have been vicariously traumatized by witnessing state abuse of their friends.

We have had friends who committed suicide out of desperation, because of indefinite detention, threat of deportation to danger, staying with us in our house one day, being re-detained and dead the next. We saw families torn apart, a mother falling to the ground with her newborn baby as her baby’s father was whisked away in a closed van to be deported to danger. Will this reign of terror end now? We certainly hope so.

Bridging visas fall into a number of categories with different requirements. Not all of them are linked to people asking for Australia’s security. There is a huge backlog and a huge bureaucracy; a big mess in the immigration department with a “can’t do anything” ethic. It needs to be repaired urgently.

Labor has already pledged to grant permanent residency to people with Temporary Protection Visas and Safe Haven Enterprise (SHEV) visas and we welcome that. We understand that the process will take time, but we are here to ensure that there is no letting up.

Would Australians really feel overwhelmed if other families like the Biloela family elected permanent residency? After all, they are already there to eat, sleep, work alongside you, sit on the train next to you and pay taxes. They just need safety and security so they can help build a better future for all without leaving anyone behind, as Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has promised.

Australia voted for change. Let’s embrace it. This is who we are and this is our request.

People Just Like Us, an Australasia-based refugee advocacy organization, is calling for an amnesty for all bridging visa-holding refugees to be granted permanent residency along with TPV and SHEV holders.

There are several cohorts of refugees.

Joyce Fu of People Just Like Us said:

No one should be punished for the way they came to this country. It is impossible to get a proper visa to come by plane if you are fleeing war or persecution. Under international humanitarian law, asylum seekers who have come by boat must be treated equally and fairly. This is in line with the Refugee Convention to which Australia is a signatory.

Refugees who suffer from our cruel national refugee policies have the right to obtain amnesty and continue with their lives.

We must ensure that no one is left behind. The goal is to eliminate all backlogs created over the past 20 years of persecution.

Additionally, Australia needs the contribution of migrants and refugees at all levels.

There has been a hiatus in immigration over the past two years, creating even more capacity. Migrants of all categories must have the certainty of being able to become active members of the community. Permanence is more efficient than continuous processing of short-term visas.

Among the refugee cohorts are those who are trafficked and abandoned in PNG and Nauru. This is an “out of the water issue” that requires very urgent attention. Despite their paper status, they should be included in the single amnesty for the backlog of cases. They have suffered enough at the hands of the Australian state and the New Zealand deal as it stands does not address the urgency of their need for rescue not at sea but on land.

It could be argued that they are entitled to claim asylum for a secondary claim of persecution by the Australian state. The minister has the power. He needs to use it. He has the mandate to do so.

Park Hotel may be over, but the abuse of refugees is not

People Just Like Us calls for a punctual reception of refugees stranded in Indonesia

The refugee cohort in Indonesia clearly falls under Australian jurisdiction as they have been warehousing there for nearly a decade at Australia’s request and at our expense. They are about 13,700. Half are Afghans. There are also many stateless Rohingyas.

Previous Australian governments have paid to maintain a secret network of detention centers across Indonesia through the International Organization for Migration (IOM). Some of them have now been closed, but refugees are still trapped there with no right to work, no right to study and no right to travel within Indonesia. Indonesia is not a signatory to the Refugee Convention. It also has a huge population that is rising out of poverty.

This is the “other” Park Hotel. It’s an open-air prison. People cannot plan a future or move on with their lives. There have been many suicides due to despair and despair. It is a system deliberately designed to steal hope, something essential for all humans. There are daily protests in the streets and belittling by the police. Unfortunately, during the visit of the Albanese Prime Minister to Makassar, some of our friends were locked up so that they could not protest. This is disappointing in a democracy.

By making the visit to Indonesia a top priority this week, Prime Minister Albanese and Foreign Minister Penny Wong have established that they hold our collegial relationship with our near neighbor in high regard. Both in Asia and the Pacific, they understand that it is time for Australia to embrace equality and end the arrogant colonial behavior of the previous government.

By all means, commerce and “people to people” can be increased, but doing so while turning a blind eye to families who commit suicide in the street is not what we voted for. Resolving this backlog of suffering on our doorstep is both good neighborly and strategic.

Temporary protection visas fail to stop boats

This is why People Just Like Us calls for a punctual reception of refugees from Indonesia to eliminate the backlog at the source. That’s where the boats come from. Give people an option and they will never risk their own precious life on a boat. Time and time again we have been told this.

Moreover, with the pause in welcoming migrants in recent years, now is the perfect time to do so. Australia currently needs all kinds of workers, skilled and unskilled. A Labor government is also great at providing training and admission could be done in a few steps.

In no time, these people can be running your local restaurant, painting your nails, or taking care of grandma. It can be the doctor in a country practice or the real estate agent who offers you a good deal on an apartment. They could even hold a pipe or drive a forklift.

A one-time influx of refugees from Indonesia can demonstrate Australia’s willingness to reset the future of regional cooperation in the refugee space, not to deter but to manage the flow of people through the region that has always existed by possibly developing a regional solution. An important part of this is decoupling refugees from national security concerns. This false narrative has not served Australia well and degraded our entire nation.

With the upcoming visit of New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and the recent trip of our new Prime Minister to Indonesia, what better time to start a first big step towards solving the refugee impasse in our region with a timely contribution from Indonesia?

Fabia Claridge has been involved in the refugee movement for 20 years, most recently as co-host of People Just Like Us, a small nimble NGO made up of members from diverse backgrounds.

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VFS Global – Summer Visa Guide


A quick guide to visas

The world is on the move again after nearly two years of lockdown and travel restrictions. As many countries open their international borders and ease travel restrictions, many travelers around the world are planning international travel.

VFS Global, the world’s largest specialist in outsourcing and technology services for governments and diplomatic missions around the world, has put together a quick visa guide for travelers planning Eid Al Adha and summer holidays .

  • What is the role of VFS Global in the visa process?

We manage administrative and non-judgmental tasks related to visa, passport and consular, identity and citizen services applications for the governments in our client portfolio. This allows diplomatic missions (i.e. embassies/consulates) to efficiently manage their time and resources and focus on the critical task of assessing visa applications and making decisions on granting. or not a visa.

  • What do the top visa application trends look like?

With the opening of international borders and the reduction of covid restrictions, we have seen good demand from travellers. The number of visa applications increased significantly after the first quarter of 2022 and in the second and third quarters we expect the return of approximately 85% of the pre-pandemic counts. Demand for our optional premium service, Visa at Your Doorstep, has also doubled since pre-pandemic times due to the increased convenience it brings to the applicant.

  • If I’m traveling to the UK with a stopover in EU member states, do I need a Schengen airport transit visa?

Yes, the Schengen airport transit visa is mandatory for stopover travelers. This requirement has existed for many years.

  • How far in advance of my travel dates should I apply for my visa?

When planning your trips, you always book flights and hotels in advance. Do the same for visas.

Most countries accept visa applications up to 90 days (3 months) before your travel date. According to the revised Schengen Visa Code, effective February 2, 2020, you can apply for a Schengen visa up to 6 months before your travel date. Particularly this year with higher demand and limited appointment slots available, we urge applicants to apply for their visa as soon as possible.

  • What are typical turnaround times for visas?

Each country has a different timeline for processing their visa, and these timelines are mentioned on the VFS Global websites, providing you with the necessary information to apply for your visa well in advance. Be aware that during peak season, visa processing may take longer than expected, so apply early. Each request is unique and therefore the processing time may differ for each case.

  • What is the scheduling process at VFS Global?

Appointment slots are offered online based on demand or forecast volume, and in conjunction with the Embassy’s own internal capacity planning. Once scheduled, we strongly recommend that you be at the center 15 minutes before the agreed time so as not to miss your slot. Dates are free, beware of scammers selling dates for money. We urge applicants not to pay for the appointments offered.

  • I’m confused about the documentation, which varies depending on who I ask! What are the correct documents to submit?

A checklist of documents required for visa applications for each country served by VFS Global is available on our website. Make sure you have all the required documents with you, including a printed version of the checklist, to be submitted with the completed application form. Check the validity of your passport and your Emirates identity card. Many countries require a passport valid for six months after your return date.

  • How do I track the status of my application?

Once your application has been submitted, you can follow the progress of your application online through the VFS Global website. Moreover, you can opt for SMS service and receive timely updates on your mobile phone.

The status will be updated as your passport is ready for collection/delivery. Please be aware that VFS Global cannot track your application during the assessment process within an Embassy or Consulate.

  • Can VFS Global advise and guide me on visa categories and vaccination?

VFS Global is strictly not authorized to provide advice or guidance on visa category or any other visa requirements the client may require. VFS Global only manages the administrative and non-judgmental aspects of the visa process, such as visa application submission and biometric enrollment. VFS Global does not comment on vaccine requirements. All travelers are advised to check destination/transit country guidelines for the same.

  • Can I speed up the process? Does using any of the value added services guarantee a faster visa outcome?

The visa processing time differs from mission to mission. Please check turnaround times before applying.

Opting for optional value-added services (such as Prime Time Services or Form-filling, or any other service) does not guarantee a faster or more positive decision by the relevant Embassy/Consulate. Optional and value-added services are available to certain client governments only, subject to service level agreements with those governments.

– Monaz Billimoria, Deputy Regional Manager – UAE and Qatar, VFS Global

Diplomatic dialogue: A meeting with James K. Hill, Consul General of Canada


The Atlanta Council on International Relations (ACIR) is honored to present: “Diplomatic Dialogue” a reception and discussion with:

James K. Hill
Consul General of Canada

Co-organized by the Consulate General of Canada

Rejoin ACIR for a Diplomatic Dialogue reception with James Hill, Consul General of Canada in Atlanta. The Consul General will return from the Southeastern U.S.-Canada Provincial Conference in Savannah earlier in the week and will discuss the dynamic Canada-U.S. commercial and strategic relationship with Mark Pierson, Director of Diplomatic Outreach and Strategic Development at CARI. Participants (limited to 28) will be able to ask questions of the Consul General after the discussion. Comments are strictly confidential and are not recorded.

The reception will feature European wines sponsored by Medici International and Canadian beer and snacks sponsored by Chester County, South Carolina.

Car park:

Free with validation, if parked in the Colony Square parking lot


$10 members, $15 non-members, $5 students (GATech and UNG only), free interns

Cancellation Policy: If you need to cancel, please do so no later than 48 hours before the event. No refunds can be made after this.

Closing of registrations Tuesday, June 21 at noon

About Consul General James K. Hill

James K. Hill: BEd, University of Saskatchewan, 1983; BA [History], University of Saskatchewan, 1985; Graduate Diploma [International Studies], Cândido Mendes University, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 1998. Mr. Hill joined the Ministry of External Affairs in 1989. Prior to his appointment as Canadian Ambassador to the Republic of Costa Rica with Joint Accreditation to the Republics of Honduras and Nicaragua, Mr. Hill has served overseas as Consul General in Seattle, Washington; Chargé d’Affaires at the Canadian Embassy in Kuwait; Deputy Head of Mission at the Canadian Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, and Chargé d’Affaires at the Canadian Embassy, ​​Tripoli, Libya. These were preceded by postings as Canadian High Commissioner to Maputo, Mozambique; Consul General of Canada, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Head of the Canadian Kosovo Diplomatic Observer Mission in Pristina, Kosovo (Yugoslavia) and Second Secretary and Vice-Consul at the Canadian Embassy in Tehran, Iran.

At Global Affairs Canada in Ottawa, Mr. Hill held senior positions as Director of Trade/Economic Relations for the Middle East and Africa, Director of Trade/Economic Relations for Europe and Central Asia , Deputy Director of the Latin America Division and Deputy Director of the Western Hemisphere. Summits Office.

Mr. Hill was born and raised in Weyburn, Saskatchewan.

About U.S.-Canada Relations

The United States and Canada share the world’s longest international border, 5,525 miles with 120 land entry points, and our bilateral relationship is one of the closest and most extensive. Nearly $1.7 billion a day in trade in goods and services passes through us every day. The February 23, 2021 Roadmap for a Renewed U.S.-Canada Partnership highlights the depth and breadth of the relationship. It sets out a blueprint for an ambitious, whole-of-government effort against the COVID-19 pandemic and in support of our mutual prosperity. It builds a partnership on climate change, advances global health security, strengthens defense and security cooperation, and reaffirms a shared commitment to diversity, equity, and justice. Our two countries, drawing on our shared history and geography, are working closely together on many levels, including collaborating in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, an inclusive and robust economic recovery, the global climate challenge, the border and national security, global affairs, the opioid crisis, environmental protection and free trade.

Two-way trade between Canada and the United States: The United States and Canada share a trillion-dollar trade and investment relationship. This economic partnership between the United States and Canada supports millions of jobs in both countries through foreign direct investment, cross-border trade, and our integrated economies. Canada buys more from the United States than any other country by a wide margin. Moreover, Canada buys more from the United States than the United Kingdom, Japan and Germany combined. No industry better describes the Canada-US relationship than the automotive industry, with its highly integrated supply chains that generate nearly $110 billion in two-way trade. Factories in both countries specialize in specific components of vehicle manufacturing. By the time a car rolls off an assembly line, certain materials/components have crossed the Canada-US border several times during the production process.

  • Millions of US jobs depend on trade and investment with Canada
  • Canada is the number one customer of most US states
  • Canada and the United States trade an average of $1.4 million in bilateral goods and services every minute of every day.
  • 76% of Canadian exports to the United States consist of raw materials, parts and components used to create other goods in the United States
  • Canada is the second largest source of foreign direct investment in the United States

Two-way trade between Canada and Georgia: Of the six states covered by the Canadian Consulate General in Atlanta, Georgia’s trade relationship with Canada ranks second, worth $11.2 billion per year in 2021 , and is surpassed only by Tennessee. Of the $6.2 billion Georgia exports to Canada, automobiles and plastics account for $944 million, or 15%. The Canadian footprint in Georgia is significantly concentrated primarily in the automotive supply chain link, lumber production and agriculture related sectors and includes notable Canadian companies such as Magna International, the giants of Canfor, West Fraser and Interfor lumber and Irving Consumer Products. It’s a relationship that hasn’t gone unnoticed as the consulate has been located in Atlanta for nearly 50 years.

  • 367 Canadian-owned companies employ more than 45,000 workers in Georgia.
  • Canada is Georgia’s largest customer.
  • Canada sells more to Georgia than to South Korea.

Central Asian country, China pledges to safeguard regional peace, stability

NUR-SULTAN – The Central Asian and Chinese foreign ministers met on June 8 in Nur-Sultan for their third meeting in the Central Asia-China format reaffirming their continued commitment to protecting regional peace and stability, the Kazakh ministry reports. Foreign Affairs.

Foreign ministers. Photo credit: Kazakh Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Kazakhstan chaired the meeting and ceded the right to lead the upcoming fourth forum to China.

The meeting was attended by Deputy Prime Minister – Foreign Minister of Kazakhstan Mukhtar Tileuberdi, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Foreign Minister of the Kyrgyz Republic Jeenbek Kulubaev, Tajik Transport Minister Azim Ibrohim, Deputy Chairman of the Turkmen Cabinet of Ministers – Foreign Minister Rashid Meredov and Acting Foreign Minister of Uzbekistan Vladimir Norov.

During the meeting, the ministers explored ways to implement the initiatives announced by the heads of state of Central Asia and China at the January summit which marked the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. .

The ministers stressed that the expansion of multidimensional cooperation between Central Asia and China is an important factor for sustainable socio-economic development, preservation of peace, stability and security in the region.

The roadmap adopted at the meeting is an important step in promoting cooperation, as it covers strategic areas such as security, transport and logistics, energy and industry, climate change, green economy, IT industry, health, education, culture and tourism. .

In their joint declaration adopted at the end of the meeting, the ministers defined the main medium-term objectives.

“It demonstrates that the current format proposed by the Chinese side in 2020 has proven to be an effective mechanism for the development of cross-regional cooperation, capable of finding mutually acceptable approaches to solving pressing regional and international issues,” the official said. Kazakh Ministry of Foreign Affairs. .

Rajnath Singh; Defense Minister Rajnath Singh; Rajnath Singh in Vietnam; India Veitnam Defense Ties; ASEAN; Pranay Verma


Rajnath Singh attends a community event hosted by the Indian Embassy in Hanoi.


Defense Minister Rajnath Singh arrived in Vietnam on Tuesday for a three-day visit, reflecting the growing congruence of maritime security cooperation with the key Southeast Asian country amid muscle flexing growth of China in the region.

Singh was greeted at the airport by India’s Ambassador to Vietnam Pranay Verma and senior officers from Vietnam’s Ministry of National Defence.

“Honourable RM, Shri Rajnath Singh arrived in Hanoi for an official visit to Vietnam from June 8 to 10, 2022. He was met at the airport by Ambassador Pranay Verma and senior officers from the Vietnamese Ministry of National Defence” , India’s embassy said on Twitter.

In New Delhi, the Defense Ministry said Rajnath Singh’s visit to Vietnam from June 8 to 10 aims to further consolidate bilateral defense ties as well as comprehensive strategic partnership.

The Minister of Defense will hold in-depth talks with his Vietnamese counterpart, General Phan Van Giang, focusing on exploring new initiatives to further strengthen defense commitments, in addition to exchanging views on regional and global issues of common concern, he added.

Singh is also due to visit Vietnamese President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh.

Vietnam, an important ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) country, has territorial disputes with China in the strategic South China Sea region.

India, the United States and several other world powers have spoken of the need to ensure a free, open and prosperous Indo-Pacific amid China’s aggressive military maneuvers in the region.

China also claims almost all of the disputed South China Sea, although Taiwan, the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia and Vietnam all claim parts of it. Beijing has built artificial islands and military installations in the South China Sea.

India has oil exploration projects in Vietnamese waters of the South China Sea. India and Vietnam have been enhancing maritime security cooperation in recent years to safeguard their common interests.

“At the Hong Ha Shipyard in Hai Phong, the Defense Minister will preside over the handover ceremony of 12 high-speed guard boats built under the Government of India’s $100 million Defense Line of Credit to Vietnam .”

“This project is significant in the context of growing defense industry cooperation with Vietnam and exemplifies Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ and ‘Make in India, Make for the World’,” said the ministry said in a statement.

During his tour of Vietnam, Mr. Singh will also visit training institutions in the country in Nha Trang, including the University of Telecommunications where an army software park is being created thanks to a grant of 5 million. dollars from India.

He will also attend a community event organized by the Indian Embassy in Hanoi and interact with the Indian community.

“The Defense Minister’s visit on the historic occasion of 50 years of establishment of Indo-Vietnamese diplomatic relations and 75 years of India’s independence will further consolidate bilateral defense cooperation and strategic partnership overall,” the ministry said.

Relations between the two countries were elevated to a “strategic partnership” level during the visit of then Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung to India in July 2007.

In 2016, during Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Vietnam, bilateral relations were further elevated to a “comprehensive strategic partnership”.

Vietnam has become an important partner in the Indian Act East policy and the Indo-Pacific vision.

Last week, Saurabh Kumar, Secretary (East) at the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), visited Vietnam for the 12th round of political consultations and the ninth round of strategic dialogue in Hanoi.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

Greece targets Indian tourists, urges consulates to speed up processing of Schengen visas


The Greek authorities plan to attract more travelers from India after the interest of the latter’s citizens in the Hellenic Republic marked a notable increase.

The Greek Ministry of Tourism pointed out that after the United States, from where the country expects a total of 500,000 travelers, Indian citizens are also very interested in visiting the Hellenic Republic, reports SchengenVisaInfo.com.

According to the statement from the Ministry of Tourism of Greece, this is the main reason why Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias requested the immediate strengthening of the Greek Embassy in New Delhi as well as the consular office, after the intervention of the Minister of Tourism. , Vassilis Kikilias, in order to be able to respond to the increased number of applications.

Among the main objectives of the Minister of Tourism is the opening of the Indian market in order to attract the most spendthrift travellers.

The same ministry noted that Indian tourists are ranked first in the world in terms of money spent on their holidays while pointing out that in 2022, the corresponding expenditure is expected to increase by 122% in total compared to pre-pandemic levels. .

Recently, the World Tourism Organization pointed out that Indians spend four times more money abroad than the average Japanese and Chinese tourists, and a total of 140% more than tourists from the United Kingdom and 71 % more than those in the United States. states.

Gastronomy, luxury tourism, culture and tourism are some of the products that most attract Indian citizens when planning to visit the Hellenic Republic.

In this regard, Minister Kikilias considered India as a huge tourism market with a large number of travelers interested in alternative as well as thematic tourism, while adding that the country has invested in these types of tourism because there are too many advantages:

“Firstly, we are attracting spendthrift travellers, secondly, we are extending our tourist season and thirdly, we are ‘illuminating’ other alternative destinations in our country, which until today were not very important,” he said. -he adds. said Minister Kikilias.

He went on to say that he is optimistic that the country will achieve such a goal, which is to strengthen the average Greek family in many areas.

Greece is among the European countries that have managed to welcome a large number of visitors from other countries, despite the difficulties caused by the restrictions imposed to stop the spread of the virus, such as entry bans and travel restrictions.

Ministry of Urban Affairs program aims to upskill 5,000 professionals to lead climate action

The National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA) and World Resources Institute (WRI) India have announced Leaders in Climate Change Management (LCCM), a practice-based learning program that aims to build the capacity of urban professionals drive climate action across all sectors and geographies. in India.

To facilitate this face-to-face learning programme, the Institute of Administrative Training (ATI) Mysuru also signed a Tripartite Memorandum of Understanding with NIUA and WRI India on Monday, becoming the first implementing partner from the program.

The LCCM plans to train 5,000 professionals, including mid- to junior-level government officials and front-line workers, and prepare them to champion climate change adaptation and mitigation solutions for a coordinated effort. to achieve India’s climate commitments. The launch also marked the achievements of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, which supports the NIUA, towards India’s urban climate goals.

V Manjula, Additional Chief Secretary of Karnataka and Managing Director of ATI Mysuru, said, “Considering the rapid urbanization of states like Karnataka, this is a very big decision. ATI is in a unique position to be part of the initiative as we have centers of excellence to deliver targeted training on disaster management, the Sustainable Development Goals, e-governance and data analytics, etc People are aware of the impacts of climate change and know that it is urgent but often there is a lack of capacity and a lack of management structures. We intend to leverage this collaboration and the experience gained in the process as a springboard to launch an extensive state-level training partnership program in the LCCM, and to emerge as a center for excellence at the national level for the LCCM. At ATI, we are looking forward to this initiative so that we can learn from it and be able to integrate climate change into various training programs that we conduct at national and national levels for officers.

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Hardeep Singh Puri, Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs, said: “It is very fitting and fitting that we are launching the program today immediately following the celebration of World Environment Day yesterday. . This program is another initiative in a long series of government interventions to not only fight climate change, but also to build a new path of sustainable development that responds to our economic conditions.

The LCCM program, designed and implemented in partnership with the United Nations Environment Program and the Indian School of Business, aims to strengthen India’s workforce to achieve this goal. It is a blended learning program for urban practitioners looking to improve their skills and prepare to lead effective climate action. The program has four phases: the first phase is an e-learning module that can be completed in eight weeks; the next includes face-to-face sessions spanning four to six days; the third phase asks participants to carry out a project over six to eight months and to attend exhibition visits; and the final phase includes networking and establishing a community of practice.

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The e-learning will be hosted on the National Urban Learning Platform, the capacity building arm of NIUA. It will also be hosted and supported by ATI, Mysuru. The program aims to sign similar agreements with ATIs across India in the coming months.

Mr. Kunal Kumar, Deputy Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, said, “To achieve these goals, we need innovation, participation, technology, integration and capacity optimization. We have already started this journey through various Indian government missions, including the Smart Cities mission. The Ministry, in collaboration with the French Development Agency (AFD), the European Union and NIUA, launched the initiative – City Investments to Innovate, Integrate and Sustain (CITIIS) as a mechanism for urban innovation. The program has developed project management tools and frameworks across the urban sector, including environmental and social safeguards. Leaders in Climate Change Management (LCCM) is connected to the CITIIS program. The first cohort of the LCCM program will include participants from the 12 cities receiving assistance under the CITIIS programme. The LCCM will become an integral part of CITIIS 2.0, as it will act as a capacity building arm.

Dr. OP Agarwal, Managing Director of WRI India, presenting the LCCM programme, its structure and its objective to improve the skills of urban climate leadership in India, said: “The main challenge in building the capacity of professionals Mid-career is about using the right kind of pedagogical style of teaching that encourages learning by doing, rather than just listening to lectures. The LCCM has fully recognized this and embraced this type of teaching style.

Hitesh Vaidya, Director of NIUA, said, “Given the rate of investments in urban sectors in India, for example $30 billion for smart cities program, the need to mainstream climate action into existing and future investments towards physical, social and environmental services is paramount to ensure sustainable development. Through the LCCM, the National Institute of Urban Affairs will work towards its goal of building capacity and disseminating knowledge on the dynamic discourse of urban issues, with reference to climate change issues.

Turkey helps lifeline to war-torn Syria hanging by a thread

Published on:

Cilvegözü (Turkey) (AFP) – Trucks loaded with humanitarian aid line up bumper to bumper amid olive groves on the Turkish-Syrian border, waiting to be allowed to cross into war-torn Syria.

Inside are diapers and baby blankets, as well as 15-kilo bags of flour, bulgur, sugar, chickpeas and peanut-based pasta for malnourished children.

Every month, the United Nations sends some 800 trucks through the Cilvegozu crossing to bring aid to millions of people in need in Syria’s last major rebel stronghold.

The border post, called Bab al-Hawa on the Syrian side, is the only authorized crossing point for UN relief to reach the stronghold of Idlib.

But many fear the crossing will be closed to UN trucks from July 10, cutting off large swaths of Idlib’s population from desperately needed assistance.

Russia, an ally of the Damascus regime, has threatened to use its veto power in a UN Security Council vote and block efforts to renew the permit for cross-border deliveries.

Observers say Russia is using it as a bargaining chip in the face of punitive sanctions over Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

“I think it’s going to be a disaster if the resolution isn’t renewed,” senior UN humanitarian official Mark Cutts said last week as he visited a UN transshipment center near of the border.

Eleven years after the start of the civil war in Syria, three million people live under the rule of jihadists and allied rebels in the stronghold of Idlib on the Turkish border.

Half of them have been uprooted from their homes in other parts of the country and are heavily dependent on international aid.

‘No alternative’

Also visiting on Thursday, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the US envoy to the United Nations, said she feared what would happen if supplies could no longer pass through Bab al-Hawa.

“It will increase the suffering,” she said.

Russia has argued that aid could instead flow through Damascus-controlled parts of the country across conflict lines.

But critics argued that this would mean far less aid to rebel-held areas.

In Turkey’s Hatay province, Syrian relief worker Ammar al-Selmo described conditions inside Idlib to the visiting US envoy, and said failure to renew the cross-border permit would be disastrous.

“There is no alternative to this mandate. Aid across the lines is no alternative,” said member of the White Helmets, a group best known for rescuing civilians after airstrikes forces in areas held by the opposition.

Turkey, supporting the rebels, is particularly keen to maintain the flow of aid to Syria because it does not want to add to the 3.7 million refugees already on its soil.

Ankara has already announced plans to return a million Syrians to a strip of land it seized from Syrian Kurds further east along the border, a plan that has angered Damascus.

As the trucks were scanned one by one in Cilvegozu, Turkish official Orhan Akturk wanted to be reassuring.

“Our local non-governmental organizations will continue to provide assistance no matter what,” said the deputy governor of the surrounding province of Hatay.

“It would be a disaster”

An aid worker, who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the press, said the Turkish Red Crescent had offered to transport all humanitarian aid on behalf of the UN.

Turkish Red Crescent chief Kerem Kinik, whose organization sends an average of 500 trucks across the border each month, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

But Sara Kayyali, Syria researcher at Human Rights Watch, was dubious.

There are very few “viable alternatives to the UN’s cross-border operation”, she told AFP.

It would be difficult for Turkish charities and other international non-governmental organizations to match the reach of the UN operation or even the confidence of donors in it, she said.

At a camp for internally displaced families in Idlib, Mohammad Harmoush, 39, said he, his wife and six children depended on help from abroad.

“Aid deliveries are essential for us. If they were interrupted, it would be a disaster,” he told AFP.

Across the border, in Hatay, former engineer Mohammad said he was worried about his nephews back in Idlib.

The man, who appeared to be in his 60s and did not give his last name, said he had no way of helping them himself.

Without humanitarian aid, “they died”, he said.

Armenia Limits Biological Weapons Cooperation With US Under Russian Pressure – Eurasia Review


By Ani Mejlumyan

(Eurasianet) – The Armenian government has said it will no longer share biological pathogen samples and outbreak data with the United States, amid a Russian campaign raising suspicions about US biological labs in the post-Soviet space.

On June 2, the government announced that it was amending a 2010 agreement between Armenia and the United States on “Cooperation in the field of preventing the proliferation of technologies, pathogens and expertise that could be used in the development of biological weapons”.

In Article IV of the agreement, the government noted in its decision, Armenia was obligated to “provide the United States Department of Defense with samples of dangerous pathogens discovered in Armenia.”

But now Armenia is working on a “comprehensive law on biosafety”, in which “it will be clearly stated that the Armenian side is not obliged to provide samples of pathogens to any state”. Later in the document, it is said that the decision was taken “by the need to ensure a balanced policy with partners in the field of biosafety and international cooperation”.

The US Embassy in Yerevan had not responded to requests for comment at the time this article was published. Calls to the Armenian National Security Council press office went unanswered. Article VII of the 2010 agreement allows either party to unilaterally modify or cancel the agreement upon 90 days written notice.

It’s unclear what prompted the decision, and government officials had no comment beyond the official advisory.

But it comes as Yerevan has hit back at accusations from Moscow that it may house secret US bioweapons facilities.

In recent years, the United States has funded the renovation and construction of a series of biological laboratories across Armenia, several in regional centers linked to a central laboratory in Yerevan. They are primarily “designed to track, monitor and combat infections,” the US Embassy said, and to “help the nation more effectively track and secure dangerous pathogens.”

The Armenian labs are part of a larger US effort to build similar labs around the world, especially in the post-Soviet space. Russia has long cast suspicion on this network – perhaps most vigorously in Georgia – suggesting that what Americans present as a simple effort to prevent the spread of disease around the world is in fact a secret and nefarious weapons program. biological anti-Russians.

Accusations have become more frequent since the start of the war in Ukraine. The Russian ambassador to the United Nations has spoken out particularly on the issue, mainly against Ukraine, but not only.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, in a May 23 interview, cited Armenia as one of several US-funded biological lab sites that were the subject of Russian concern.

“What is important is the transparency that allows us to ensure that these programs do not have a military dimension, as this is prohibited by the Convention [on the Prohibition of Biological and Toxin Weapons]said Lavrov.

Lavrov said Russia was in the process of putting in place bilateral agreements with several post-Soviet countries allowing Russia to inspect facilities. But as early as 2019, Yerevan and Moscow had signed an agreement allowing Russian officials, including military personnel, access to the Armenian facilities in question.

“The main objective of this document is to honor the interests of all parties, to ensure that no one, none of our partners, has any fears regarding the laboratories,” Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said at the time.

This does not appear to have appeased Russia, and Armenian officials have now expressed confusion over what more Moscow might need to know.

“These issues have been raised before, we have created a working committee […] to ensure transparency. We invited Russian colleagues and were always open to discuss any issue at any time. And we’re sure we can address any concerns, which should be enough for the context of the issues raised. [by Russia]said the head of Armenia’s National Security Council, Armen Grigoryan, in a May 31 interview with local news site CivilNet.

“Maybe they have more questions, and we are talking with our Russian partners to answer the remaining questions,” he said. “Based on a memorandum signed between the countries, we are currently negotiating the execution of the responsibilities assumed by this memorandum,” he said. In 2021, Armenia and Russia signed a memorandum on biosafety cooperation.

“There are internal discussions within the Armenian government, and soon we will be ready for the final discussion,” Grigoryan said.

Separately, Grigoryan said senior National Security Council officials visited Moscow and “discussed all existing issues. […] The Armenian side gave comprehensive answers to all questions [Russian] specialists have spoken.

Armenia has for the most part taken a low-key stance on Russia’s war in Ukraine. Armenia is a treaty ally of Russia; as members of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, both sides are obligated to defend each other. Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February, Armenia has provided diplomatic support to Moscow in votes at the United Nations, but has otherwise tried to keep its head down.

*Ani Mejlumyan is a journalist based in Yerevan.

El Salvador to open a consulate in Springdale


SPRINGDALE — El Salvador will open a consulate at 3861 W. Sunset Ave on Monday. in Springdale to help serve its citizens of Northwest Arkansas.

“We want them to be proud of our service,” said Alicia Hernandez, vice consul for San Francisco, who will open the local office with three staff members. “We want them to know that the consulate is their home.”

Hernandez’s English skills were limited, so Jessica Aguilar-Hiett, director of Salvadorenos Unidos Para Arkansas and daughter of the organization’s founder, provided translation as needed.

Members of the non-profit group Salvadorenos Unidos since 2018 have sent letter after letter to the Salvadoran government asking for a consulate. Before Monday, citizens of this country had to go to the consulate in Dallas for documents and services.

Salvadorenos Unidos was started by Paz Aguilar to help Salvadorans and other Latinos in the Northwest Arkansas area. She brought her 12-year-old daughter to Siloam Springs in 1985 after her husband was killed in action during the country’s 12-year civil war.

Aguilar lost patience with the 12-hour round trip to Dallas, the nearest Salvadoran consulate, when she and other Salvadorans needed documents from their country.

A woman came to Aguilar after paying her cousin $1,000 to take her to Dallas, but he disappeared with her money. Many Salvadorans living in northwest Arkansas don’t have a car, so they pay someone to take them to Dallas, Aguilar said.

She added that a Salvadoran national would have to take one or maybe two days off for the trip, which meant lost pay and possibly an unfriendly boss. Then a trip may require a night or two in a hotel.

And if the Salvadoran was missing a document or signature, the trip to Dallas could have been a waste of time, said Margarita Solorzano, executive director of the Hispanic Women’s Organization of Arkansas.

And a mother might have to take the whole family on a trip because she lived here without family benefits, Solorzano added.

“This is really great news,” she said. Now, Salvadoran nationals will no longer have to wait for someone to take them to Texas.

A local consulate will help residents of northwest Arkansas streamline the process, and that 12-hour drive could be cut to half an hour, she said.

“It’s not impossible, but it’s difficult. And it’s expensive,” said Jose Hernandez, whose journey to legal status and a business of his own spanned 10 years.

Although Hernandez is originally from Mexico, he is a board member and business sponsor of Salvadorenos Unidos. Aguilar said the group is ready to help anyone who needs help. Hernandez sits on the board because he wants to give back to the community that helped him navigate his new country.

He has no connection with the vice-consul.

Solorzano said Salvadorans are the second largest Latin American group in northwest Arkansas, with Mexicans being the largest.

The 2018 census counted 25,000 people of Salvadoran descent in northwest Arkansas, she reported.

Aguilar-Hiett estimated that 34,000 Salvadoran nationals live here today.

She noted that the Salvadoran government would not consider a consulate unless the region had at least 30,000 Salvadoran citizens.

The Salvadoran government saw a large population of Salvadoran nationals in northwest Arkansas that would continue to grow year after year and knew it needed a full-time consulate, said board member Kevin Flores. Springdale City Council and General Counsel who also represents some clients with immigration issues.

Flores’ family left El Salvador in 1991 to escape civil war. Flores said he was 7 years old. He also finds a real parallel to American success that the effort to obtain the consulate was led by a group of grassroots volunteers.

Salvadoran population is larger than 21 of the state’s cities, said Bill Rogers, president of the Springdale Chamber of Commerce. He said Sherwood and Benton have populations similar to Salvadorans, while Van Buren is considerably smaller at just 23,000 people, according to the 2020 census.

The chamber, Mayor Doug Sprouse, and local business leaders wrote letters in favor of a consulate in Springdale. When the Salvadoran government initially approved a consulate in Arkansas, it wanted to open it in Little Rock because it’s the state capital, Aguilar-Hiett said.

The Salvadoran government “shut down” during the pandemic, allowing time for Salvadorenos Unidos to request those letters of support, which made a difference in the location of the consulate, Aguilar-Hiett said.

Salvadorenos Unidos sponsored its first “mobile consulate” in February 2020, Aguilar-Hiett continued.

The consulate was due to open at 6 a.m. Saturday in rented space at Harps Plaza at North Thompson Street and Backus Avenue. People started lining up on Friday, Aguilar-Hiett reported.

Consulate staff and volunteers worked until 4 a.m. Sunday when the computers needed a break, she said.

Consulate staff asked if they had to work long hours, she said. “The president told them that they were government employees to provide services to citizens. Citizens needed services, so yes, they had to work,” she said.

Aguilar-Hiett noted that the Dallas Consulate typically processes about 200 passports per week. The mobile consulate was processing 500 a day, she said.

The new consulate will join a Republic of the Marshall Islands consulate opened in Springdale in 2000. Eldon Alik, the general counsel, estimates the area’s Marshallese population at 15,000.

“Marshallans are lucky in Springdale because the community, the mayor and the governor all support the community,” Alik said.


The most important document for a Salvadoran immigrant is an ID card issued by their country of origin, similar to a state driver’s license, Aguilar-Hiett said. This documentation is the starting point for all other services, including work permits and passports.

Many Salvadoran nationals also apply for passports at the Salvadoran consulate, which are necessary when traveling between countries, Alicia Hernandez said. The consulate will also issue birth and death certificates in El Salvador and provide legal notary services in El Salvador, she added.

For example, the consulate here can issue a power of attorney that will be recognized in El Salvador, Alicia Hernandez said. Maybe someone here wants to sell land in their home country but needs someone to act as their agent, she gave as an example.

And common requests from consular staff are to help return to El Salvador to bury the bodies of Salvadoran nationals who die here, she said. The consulate can help if the family doesn’t have the money to send the body home.

Salvadoran citizens living in northwest Arkansas will be able to vote in the upcoming Salvadoran elections at the Consulate in Springdale.

“Nothing other than the consulate can provide those legal measures that they are already entitled to as citizens of El Salvador,” Flores said.

He noted that many Salvadorans living in northwest Arkansas held dual citizenship with the United States.

Consulate services are also available to Salvadoran citizens living in northwest Arkansas without proper documentation, Flores noted.

The Salvadoran consulate would be their first stop to acquire legal residency. The consulate serves Salvadoran citizens the same way a county courthouse serves US citizens.

“If you don’t need the services of a consulate, you don’t realize how vital it is,” Rogers said.

The Prime Minister will inaugurate the “iconic week” on June 6, Raja Bhoj room, venue

Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): Prime Minister Narendra Modi to inaugurate ‘Iconic Week’ under ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ in Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi on June 6, according to official information; the program will air in 75 major Indian cities.

The program will be broadcast at Kushabhau Thackeray-International Convention Centre, Raja Bhoj Hall in Bhopal via webcast from 10:30 a.m., according to the official press release.

During the event, various administrative reforms carried out by the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Corporate Affairs in the development of the financial sector and the economic progress of the country will be presented.

The Prime Minister will also open a digital exhibition highlighting the work done by the Ministry of Finance over the years and launch 5 special edition coins of different denominations.

The Prime Minister will also launch the “Jan Samarth Portal” – a single unified national portal that will be simple and convenient for all beneficiaries of government credit-related schemes. A short film titled “Money Flows, Nation Grows” will also be screened.

Various programs will be organized across the country from June 6 to June 11 in various departments of the Ministry of Finance and Social Affairs such as the Central Council of Direct Taxes (CBDT), the Central Council of Indirect Taxes and Customs, the Directorate of Services Financial, the Comptroller General. of Accounts, Arun Jaitley National Institute of Financial Management, etc.

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AU chairperson Sall aims to upend African relations with the West

Dakar, June 4 (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News – June 4, 2022): Senegalese President and African Union Chairman Macky Sall entered a meeting on Friday and shook hands with a smiling Vladimir Putin before sitting down at next to him to discuss the war in Ukraine.

In a notable reversal of typical roles, Sall led an African delegation to Russia to hold talks with the Russian president about the European war.

The seemingly cozy scene – which unfolded in the southwestern city of Sochi on the 100th day of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – marked a significant step forward in Sall’s efforts to strengthen the position Africa’s global politics.

“Much of humanity is very attentive to what is happening” in Ukraine, Sall said, referring to the need to free up grain and fertilizer stocks for export.

“I have come to see you to ask you to realize that our countries, although far from the theater (of war), are the victims of this crisis on the economic level”, he declared.

Moscow’s military campaign in Ukraine and a deluge of international sanctions against Russia have cut off the supply of fertilizers, wheat and other staples to both countries.

Cereal prices in Africa, the world’s poorest continent, have surged, accentuating the impact of conflict and climate change and raising fears of social unrest.

Four months into Sall’s one-year tenure as AU chair, the diplomatic mission to Russia is just one of many ambitious campaigns the Senegalese leader has launched on the world stage.

He also called for two permanent African seats on the UN Security Council, advocated for the AU to join the G20 and demanded OECD reform to allow longer loan periods to African countries.

“It’s good leadership, making sure the voice of the African continent is heard and heard loud and clear in today’s world,” said Alioune Tine, the founder of Dakar-based think tank Afrikajom Center. .

He described Sall’s mission in Europe as “completely unprecedented”. “It’s normally the Europeans who get involved in African wars. Now, if the Africans mediate, that’s a great thing,” he said in French.

A dozen African countries, including Senegal, depend on Russia and Ukraine for at least half of their wheat imports, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Many countries are feeling the combined effects of delayed grain exports and rising fuel prices.

– Noble goals – In a recent joint press conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Sall said African countries were “deeply divided” over the Ukraine conflict. He repeated calls for a ceasefire.

“For Africa, we want peace… We want peace even though we condemn the invasion,” he said, although he himself was reluctant to outright condemn the aggression. Russian.

Senegal abstained on March 2 in a UN General Assembly vote to demand “that Russia immediately cease the use of force against Ukraine”.

“He passed a second resolution on March 24 asking Russia to stop the war immediately.

Almost half of African countries abstained or did not vote in both votes.

Russia has made inroads in Africa in recent years through military alliances and arms deals. In 2019, Putin hosted dozens of African leaders in Sochi in a bid to reassert Russia’s influence on the continent.

Sall, who was invited by Russia on Friday, also spoke by phone with Putin on March 9. On April 11, he held a call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

On Saturday, Sall will take part in an ECOWAS summit in Accra to discuss putsches in neighboring Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso.

He was also invited to this month’s G7 summit in Germany.

“President Macky Sall’s goals are quite ambitious…but he cannot reform the UN, the G20 and the OECD in six months,” said Ibrahim Nyei, a researcher at the Center for Democracy and Development. based in Liberia.

“I think the African Union should take these issues step by step and prioritize them, and the biggest international organization you’re going to influence would be the UN Security Council.” – ‘Africa must have a say’ – In a recent speech to young African leaders, Sall said he wanted two permanent African members on the Security Council – or a reform of the rules so that one country cannot veto decisions.

He estimated that African issues make up 70% of the council’s business.

“Africa must have a say,” said Mbaye Babacar Diop, a Dakar-based consultant. “We have over a billion people.” With close ties to France and the United States, as well as relations with China, Israel, Iran and Saudi Arabia, Senegal has one of the broadest diplomatic policies in Africa.

“Senegal has always been a great country of diplomacy,” going back to the first president, Léopold Sedar Senghor, Tine said.

But, analysts say, to maintain his legitimacy abroad, Sall needs to make sure his own house is in order.

Senegal has faced a number of internal crises in the four months since it took the reins of the AU.

Last week, a fire at a hospital in the western town of Tivaouane killed 11 newborn babies, one of several recent tragedies that have sparked a national outcry against the country’s health services.

Sall had to return from an AU summit in Equatorial Guinea.

Meanwhile, critics fear he could exploit constitutional changes approved in 2016 to argue that a presidential two-term limit does not apply, in order to run for a third term in 2024.

Those fears contributed to Senegal’s worst protests in years in 2021.

He said he would announce his decision after the July legislative elections.

“He mustn’t neglect Senegalese issues, he mustn’t neglect African issues, he mustn’t neglect global issues – he must do everything at the same time,” Diop said.

Rainbow Flap: Biden Pride tweet sparks objection from Kuwait


WASHINGTON — A tweet from the U.S. Embassy of a rainbow flag-adorned message from President Joe Biden in support of Pride Month drew face-to-face diplomatic protest from Kuwait and sparked a rare Twitter brawl between the two close allies.

On Friday, US diplomats lined up with rainbow flag messages and statements in support of LGBTQ rights on social media. The posts appeared in response to the Kuwaiti government’s official objection the previous day to what the Kuwaiti state news agency called the “pro-gay rights post” of the US embassy there.

“America stands with the LGBTQI+ community everywhere,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a pointed Friday retweet of the original offensive Pride Month post from the embassy.

The dispute began after the US Embassy in Kuwait posted a tweet on Thursday calling Biden a champion of LGBTQI rights. “All human beings should be treated with respect and dignity and should be able to live without fear, no matter who they are or who they love,” he said.

Late at night, according to the account of the official Kuwait News Agency, the Kuwaiti Foreign Ministry summoned the embassy’s acting charge d’affaires, James Holtsnider, to “express its rejection of the post”. .

A Foreign Ministry official, Nawaf al Ahmad, handed Holtsnider a written objection “while emphasizing the need for the embassy to abide by the laws and regulations of the country”, according to the Kuwaiti News Agency.

Kuwaiti law punishes consensual same-sex relations between men with up to seven years in prison, according to Human Rights Watch. A court ruling this year overturned another law that made “impersonating the opposite sex” a crime punishable by jail.

Some conservative Kuwaitis have come out in support of their government’s action. The US embassy was “attempting to impose abnormal patterns of behavior rejected by Kuwaiti Muslim society,” one of them, Hamad al Matar, tweeted.

Asked for comment, the State Department said in a statement Friday, “The United States proudly advances efforts around the world to protect all individuals.”

On Friday, the US Embassy in Kuwait’s Twitter account featured the original tweet, in Arabic and English, which sparked the objection, along with a photo of a waving rainbow flag on a blue sky set as the account’s profile picture.

The United States and Kuwait, bound by strategic interests, including regional security, have a long history of largely stable good relations. This includes the United States leading an international army in 1991 to liberate Kuwait from Saddam Hussein’s invading forces in Iraq.

Haj 2022: Meet 3 cycling friends from Tajikistan to Saudi Arabia via UAE – News


After traveling thousands of miles, the trio from the capital of the Central Asian country have now reached Dubai

Photo: Shihab/KT

Published: Fri, June 3, 2022, 5:52 PM

Last update: Fri, June 3, 2022, 6:36 PM

Three friends cycling from Tajikistan to Mecca to perform the Haj, said it had been an unforgettable spiritual journey – a journey filled with adventure, kindness and hope.

After traveling thousands of miles, the trio from the capital of the Central Asian country, Dushanbe, have now reached the United Arab Emirates.

For Gafurov Dilovar, Nazarov Saidali and Talabov Shokir, all in their thirties, the difficult road trip was one of the only possible ways to make the pilgrimage. According to reports, the government of Tajikistan is banning citizens under the age of 40 from making the pilgrimage and is seeking to give the elderly a chance.

Photo: Shihab/KT

Photo: Shihab/KT

“We are all friends. We decided to undertake the pilgrimage on our bikes. We have been planning this trip since the beginning of the year. We are on a month-long bike ride. We faced several issues ranging from hot weather, sand and dust storms and windy conditions to flat tires, language barriers, sleeping on the road and more, but we overcame all of these obstacles. Now we are waiting to get visas from the Saudi Consulate General in Dubai to continue our journey,” said Dilovar, a 37-year-old entrepreneur and father of two.

They started the journey after the holy month of Ramadan from Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan.

They started the journey after the holy month of Ramadan from Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan.

Dilovar recorded and posted key moments on his Instagram handle.

In a strange coincidence, the trio are in the United Arab Emirates on World Bike Day, which falls on June 3.

From the rugged mountains, the trio of cyclists, who speak only Russian and Persian, began their journey after the end of the holy month of Ramadan. They first tried to cross into neighboring Turkmenistan, but entering the country imposed a 20-day Covid-19 quarantine. So they sought to find another route across the border between Afghanistan and Uzbekistan, but again failed due to the new geopolitical situation. Next, they traveled to Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, while touring areas like the historic 2,000-year-old city of Bukhara.

“When one door closed, another opened. Routes changed, but our journey never stopped. We are here in Dubai hoping to get visas to visit Saudi Arabia to perform Haj,” said Saidali, 31, a grocery store owner and father of three.

From Tashkent, they flew to Baku in Azerbaijan, then hit the road, crisscrossing several ancient cities of Iran such as Qazvin – the country’s calligraphy capital and Isfahan – one of the most important cities in the Routes program Silk. They eventually took a ferry from Bandar Abbas to reach Sharjah.

Photo: Shihab/KT

Photo: Shihab/KT

“It has been quite a journey of spiritual awakening. We passed through villages and mountainous areas, riding in searing heat during the day and cold nights. We ate by the roadside and camped outside mosques at night. We traveled with essential gear like maps, tents, snacks, etc. said Shokir, 34, a businessman and father of four.

They prayed in several iconic mosques and paid their respects at the graves of martyrs and saints.

Take a bite on the go.

Take a bite on the go.

“Over the past 30 days, we have been to different countries and cultures, and we have made many new friends. We have learned many new life lessons. We could help people fix their flat tires. We have received support from several people we were meeting for the first time. We always believed that we could complete this Haj pilgrimage, and we are now almost there. We hope to get visas to travel soon,” Dilovar added after his visit to the consulate on Friday.

In Dubai, they are assisted by their friend Mohammed Jon.

“Over the past 30 days, we have visited different countries and cultures and made many new friends. We have learned many new lessons in life. We were helping people fix their flat tires. We received the support from several people we met for the first time. We always believed that we could complete this Haj pilgrimage, and we are now almost there. We hope to get visas to travel soon.

Minister of Police and IGP launch accountability project

The Federal Government, through the Ministry of Police Affairs, in conjunction with the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali-Baba, has launched the Police Specialist Services Automation Project to institutionalize transparency and accountability , and entrench quality service delivery within the Nigeria Police Force.

The Minister for Police Affairs, Dr Muhammad Maigari-Dingyadi commissioned the project at the International Peace Conference Hall, Nigeria Police Headquarters in Abuja on Thursday.

Maigari-Dingyadi noted that the initiative’s alignment with the regime of President Major General Muhammadu Buhari (Retired) was key to prioritizing enhanced security, anti-corruption and economic development. .

“I resumed the process of updating it by presenting it to the Federal Executive Council for approval through a memorandum which was approved in July 2021.

“Previously, the Nigerian Police provided specialist services such as applications for Police Figure Certificates, Police Excerpts, Specialist Escorts and Custody Services. The current manual way of dealing with the provision of these services lacks the fundamental principles of accountability and transparency. For these reasons, the need to automate processes has become imperative.

The Minister, however, noted that the POSSAP was not just an NPF project, but a mechanism put in place for the realization of the Federal Government’s policy on its Revenue Growth Strategic Initiative.

“It is also a strategic initiative for police reform to improve homeland security through its integration with existing national identity data repositories and the improvement of the well-being of its officers and men while repositioning the image and perception of the Force.

“The image and perception of the Force would no longer be described by the individual actions of a few bad eggs but by the collective mechanism of rapid delivery of specialized services as encapsulated in the POSSAP project. I am pleased to inform the officers and men of the Force that the recent federal government approval of the new police salary structure was largely based on additional revenue to be derived from the POSSAP project.

The IGP, Alkali-Baba, who also spoke at the event, said the meeting of the highest hierarchy of the Nigerian Police in Abuja should periodically review and assess strategies and strengthen internal security operations against banditry, kidnapping, armed robbery, very violent acts. crimes, assessment of political trends and general security issues interface with field commanders to assess possible threats, and also refine strategy ahead of the 2023 general election.

“The concept of POSSAP is to enable citizens to benefit from specialized police services, which is a worldwide practice, to ensure standardization of the process of providing police services and to ensure accountability as it would act as a revenue complementary to increase the well-being of the staff and finance basic needs such as the supply of tools for the exploitation.

POSSAP chief executive Dr David Ibhawoh also said the project is aimed at re-engineering the internal operations of the existing police.

He said: “POSSAP is intended for the re-engineering of existing internal police operations to drive specialized services for sustainable improvement in infrastructure, efficiency, effectiveness, service delivery, responsibility and optimization of assets for the benefit of Nigerian citizens”.

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News: NATO Summit 2022, 28-Jun-2022

NATO leaders meet in Madrid, Spain to discuss important issues facing the Alliance. The Madrid Summit will set NATO’s strategic direction for the next decade and beyond, ensuring the Alliance continues to adapt to a changing world and provide security for its billion people.

Summit in a nutshell

  • Who: Heads of State and Government of NATO member countries and key partners
  • What: Meeting to discuss the most pressing security issues of today and tomorrow, and to endorse NATO’s new Strategic Concept
  • Where: Madrid, Spain
  • When: June 29-30, 2022
  • Why: To ensure that NATO continues to fulfill its primary purpose and greatest responsibility: to ensure the collective defense of its member countries and to ensure the security of our billion people

The host country

Did you know?

Madrid hosted a NATO summit 25 years ago on July 8-9, 1997.

One of the notable decisions taken by NATO leaders at this summit was to invite the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland – the first post-Cold War member countries – to begin talks on membership with NATO.

Check out this blast from the past website for photos and information.

Spain is hosting the 2022 NATO summit in a banner year – the 40th anniversary of its NATO membership.

Spain became the 16th country to join NATO on May 30, 1982. The newest member brought a lot to the table by joining the 33-year-old Alliance – not only its military capabilities and its vital geostrategic position for defense of Western Europe (positioned between the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean), but also its diplomatic competence and its political relations with Latin America, the Middle East and North Africa.

Eventually, a Spanish diplomat would serve as Secretary General of NATO, guiding the Alliance through its first major peacekeeping operation and its transition from a Cold War organization to a security organization. fully flexible engaged with new partners and prepared for new threats and challenges.

Learn about Spain’s history in the Alliance on Declassified NATO.

Strategic Concept 2022

At the Madrid summit, NATO will adopt its new strategic concept.

This key document reaffirms NATO’s values, purpose and tasks. It provides a collective assessment of the security challenges facing the Alliance and outlines the political and military tasks NATO will undertake to meet them.

The Strategic Concept is the result of internal consultation among Allies and external engagement with partners, other international organizations, expert communities, youth organizations, civil society and the private sector.

Learn more about the strategic concept.

USAID provides equipment to the phthisiology and pneumology center in Djizzak


June 02, 2022 – Today, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) handed over essential medical supplies to health facilities in Djizzak to help the region in its fight against tuberculosis (TB). Representatives from the USAID Mission in Uzbekistan, the National Center for Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases, and the Djizzak Regional Health Administration participated in the handover.

Through the joint efforts of the Ministry of Health, USAID, and other international partners, Uzbekistan has made great strides in reducing TB cases and associated deaths, but multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) continues to be a significant problem in the country. . USAID works to reduce the burden of TB in Uzbekistan and Central Asia by building local and regional capacity to improve detection and treatment of multidrug-resistant TB.

“Today’s event demonstrates the continued partnership between USAID and Uzbekistan to improve health services throughout the country, including Djizzak. By working together, we can improve the health and well-being of Uzbek citizens,” said Cherry Gumapas, Director of USAID/Uzbekistan’s Health Development Office, during the handover ceremony.

The equipment, valued at around $75,000, included electronic thermometers, stethoscopes, optical equipment and pulse oximeters. These instruments will help healthcare providers in the region provide efficient and timely care, provide timely diagnosis and treat patients with chronic conditions.

The medical equipment was donated by an American manufacturer, Welch Allyn, as part of USAID’s End Tuberculosis in Central Asia activity. The equipment will be used at the Regional Center for the Fight against Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases in Djizzak, in tuberculosis dispensaries, hospitals and outpatient facilities in the Djizzak region.


USAID is the world’s premier international development agency and a catalyst for development results. To learn more, visit: https://www.usaid.gov/central-asia-regional and the USAID/Central Asia Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/USAIDCentralAsia.


Inauguration of the first direct flight from Boston to Athens


BOSTON — Delta Airlines’ first direct flight from Boston to Athens in twenty-five years opened May 27 at Boston’s Logan Airport with the raising of the Greek flag, Greek dancing by the Metropolis of Boston Dance group, messages and greetings and Greek food and pastries.

The first flight departed on time with one hundred percent capacity. The flight will depart three times a week: Sunday, Wednesday and Friday. For more than an hour before and after departure, music by Mikis Theodorakis was playing at the airport terminal, which caught the attention of many Greek and American passengers and the Boston metropolis dance group under the direction of Dr. John Pappas presented traditional Greek dances in colorful costumes.

Efforts for a direct flight between Boston and Athens began about three years ago by Stratos Efthimiou, Consul General of Greece in Boston and his team, which included Marina Hatsopoulos, Nick Metropoulos, Katerina Makatounis and Stephany Orfanos, whom he publicly thanked at the event.

Commemorative photo of the inauguration of the direct flight from Boston to Athens. Pictured are Metropolitan Methodios of Boston, Michael and Kitty Dukakis, Lou Evangelidis and Consul General Stratos Efthimiou with his children. (Photo provided by the Consulate General of Greece in Boston)

Michael Dukakis, former Massachusetts governor and 1988 presidential candidate, in his greeting, called the direct flight “historic for the Greek-American community in Boston as it brings the Omogeny closer to New England. of Greece”.

Metropolitan Methodios of Boston sent his greetings and also his blessings for a safe journey.

Massport’s Greek-American chairman Lou Evagelidis expressed his joy for the flight and revealed that his roots came from Epirus.

Pratik Patel, regional manager of Delta Airlines, welcomed the gathering and praised the direct flight from Boston to Athens. Many American and Greek travel agents were also present.

Consul General of Greece in Boston Stratos Efthimiou speaks during the rally at the airport. Shown is Lou Evangelidis. (Photo provided by the Consulate General of Greece in Boston)
Former Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis speaks at the airport. (Photo provided by the Consulate General of Greece in Boston)

EAM Jaishankar on 5-day visit to Slovakia, Czech Republic from Thursday | Latest India News

The visit comes at a time when Europe is grappling with the implications of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the issue is likely to feature in Foreign Minister talks in Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar will pay a five-day visit to Slovakia and the Czech Republic from Thursday to give new impetus to relations with the two Central European countries.

The visit comes at a time when Europe is grappling with the implications of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the issue is likely to feature in Foreign Minister talks in Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

During his visit to the Slovak capital Bratislava from June 2 to 4, Jaishankar will visit Prime Minister Eduard Heger and hold bilateral talks with Foreign Minister Ivan Korcok, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) announced on Wednesday.

He said he will also attend the GLOBSEC 2022 forum and speak on the topic “Taking Friendship to the Next Level: Allies in the Indo-Pacific Region”.

Jaishankar is also due to meet his Austrian counterpart Alexander Schallenberg on the sidelines of the forum.

During his visit to the Czech Republic from June 4 to 6, Jaishankar will meet with Foreign Minister Jan Lipavsky.

“The talks will be an opportunity for a comprehensive review of our bilateral cooperation,” the MEA said, adding that the Czech Republic would take over the EU presidency from July 1.

In addition to meeting political leaders from both countries, Jaishankar will also interact with a cross section of the Indian diaspora, including Indian students in Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

“India traditionally enjoys close and friendly relations with Slovakia and the Czech Republic. The visit of the Foreign Minister will give new impetus to bilateral relations with the two Central European countries,” the MEA said.

Close story



May 30, 2022, Tashkent, Uzbekistan – Today the United States, with funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), provided the Uzbekistan Ministry of Health with cold chain equipment and computers it had urgent need to strengthen the national immunization system of Uzbekistan. The equipment, which includes 671 refrigerators, 212 freezers and 150 computers worth a total of $1.3 million, will strengthen Uzbekistan’s capacity to implement functional and effective vaccine management. This much-needed equipment will be distributed to primary health care facilities across the country.

“The continued partnership between the United States and Uzbekistan is essential in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccinating the most vulnerable people, providing emergency supplies, and strengthening economic recovery, and to prepare for, prevent, detect, and respond to future waves of COVID and other outbreaks,” said USAID Deputy Assistant Administrator for Asia Änjali Kaur.

This donation is part of USAID’s larger donation totaling $16 million in COVID-19 relief. USAID, through its implementing partner UNICEF, is working with the Ministry of Health to ensure immunization for all children in Uzbekistan. Vaccines and the efficient cold chain technology needed to store and administer them are central elements of Uzbekistan’s strategy to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

“A functioning cold chain that reaches primary health care facilities is imperative,” said Munir Mammadzade, UNICEF Representative in Uzbekistan. “This equipment goes where the Uzbek people get their basic health services. Investing at the primary care level is key to reaching people and children with life-saving vaccines,” he added.

This U.S. donation will help with the deployment of the COVID-19 vaccine as well as the upcoming measles and rubella vaccination campaign, scheduled for September 2022. Since the first detected case of COVID-19, the U.S. government has provided the Uzbekistan over $18 million in pandemic relief. This includes both USAID funds and assistance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and includes more than 7 million vaccines.


USAID is partnering with the government of Uzbekistan to diversify the country’s economy and increase regional trade, address serious health threats – including COVID-19 – and build government capacity to meet the needs of population. For more information, please visit: https://www.usaid.gov/uzbekistan, and USAID’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/USAIDUzbekistan


UNICEF promotes the rights and well-being of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate this commitment into practical action, focusing special efforts to reach the most vulnerable and excluded children, for the benefit of all children, everywhere.

For more information about UNICEF and its work in Uzbekistan, visit www.unicef.uz

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Book portrays unsung war heroes who saved Jewish lives


TSURUGA, Fukui Prefecture–Chiune Sugihara, a Japanese diplomat who served as vice-consul in Kaunas, Lithuania, during World War II, is aptly nicknamed the “Japanese Schindler”.

But what about Saburo Nei and Yoshitsugu Tatekawa?

Today an English translation of a book by Akira Kitade is set to be published, featuring five diplomats in Japan and abroad who helped thousands of Jews flee Nazi persecution in Europe. during World War II, just as Sugihara did when issuing his “lifetime visas”. .”

Titled “Emerging Heroes: WWII-Era Diplomats, Jewish Refugees, and Escape to Japan”, the English version is translated from the original edition published in December 2020.

Kitade, 78, a freelance writer in Tokyo, has extensively studied the period when a few individuals like Oskar Schindler, at risk to their lives, ensured that many Jews would survive the Nazi Holocaust.

“How relevant officials reached out to Jewish refugees fleeing to safety is covered in detail,” said Kitade, 78, expressing his expectations for the translation. “I hope people around the world who pick up the book will reflect on the past.”

It depicts, among other things, the achievements of Nei (1902-1992), the Vice Consul General of the Japanese Consulate General in Vladivostok, who allowed Jews to travel to Japan in defiance of a Foreign Ministry decree. not to issue visas out of fear. of a peak of refugees, and Tatekawa (1880-1945), the Japanese ambassador to the Soviet Union.

Other people featured in the book include a Dutch consul in Kaunas, Lithuania, and a Polish ambassador to Japan. Like Sugihara, diplomats outside Japan pledged to evacuate Jewish refugees to Japan and beyond, but are not as famous.

Kitade, who previously worked for Japan’s National Tourism Organization, visited former refugees and their descendants in the United States and other countries to weave stories of the exodus into her book.

In the process, Kitade referenced photos of passengers from a ship carrying Jewish evacuees between Vladivostok and the port of Tsuruga in Japan’s Fukui Prefecture.

The English translation by an American publisher should go on sale around June.

On May 13, Kitade attended a ceremony marking the release of the foreign-language edition at the Port of Humanity Tsuruga Museum, located in Tsuruga, Fukui Prefecture, and dedicated to conveying the story of the Jewish refugees who arrived there safe and sound.

“I will get great pleasure if people get interested in Tsuruga after reading my book and come here,” Kitade said.

The English version will also be sold at the museum.

Secretary for Economic Affairs – The New Indian Express


NEW DELHI: The government will soon finalize a consultation paper on cryptocurrencies with input from various stakeholders and institutions, including the World Bank and the IMF, Economic Affairs Secretary Ajay Seth said on Monday.

He also underscored the need for a global response to address issues regarding cryptocurrencies as they operate in the virtual world.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has repeatedly expressed reservations about these virtual currencies, citing a threat to macroeconomic stability.

Speaking on the sidelines of the ‘Iconic Week’ curtain-raising event as part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav to be celebrated by the Ministry of Finance, Seth said the consultation document was quite ready.

“We consulted not only national institutional actors, but also organizations such as the World Bank and the IMF, so we hope that we will soon be able to finalize our consultation document,” he said.

Simultaneously, he said, India also started working on some sort of global regulation.

“Countries that have banned, they can’t be successful unless there’s a global consensus around this. There needs to be a broad framework for participation. Digital assets, however we want dealing with these assets, there needs to be a broad framework that all economies need to be together. No country can choose one position or the other. We need a global consensus on crypto regulation” , did he declare.

If you recall, says Seth, the Prime Minister has made this observation time and time again.

Expressing his hope, he said, India is poised to become the fastest growing economy among the world’s major economies despite global challenges.

“We can overcome the current challenges as well as the challenges that will come our way in the coming years in the Amrit Kal. There are strong global headwinds that have impacted the global economy. Despite all this, India is poised to grow the fastest of any major country in the world. That was the position six months ago and that will still be our assessment today,” he said.

Seth also assured that inflation should moderate with the help of fiscal and monetary measures.

When asked what other measures were being considered to cool prices, he replied that the situation was changing and it was difficult to say what the next steps would be.

“Whatever the current challenges are, they are being addressed in a timely manner,” he added.

Earlier this month, the government announced several measures including a reduction in excise duty on petrol and diesel prices by Rs 8 per liter and Rs 6 per liter respectively.

With commodity prices moderating, he said, “we expect inflation to slow down in the coming months, and for that, all the necessary measures on the fiscal side have been taken, and the RBI is also taking these steps.”

When asked if geopolitical tension could impact growth, he replied, “When there are headwinds, obviously things slow down.”

At the time of the budget, he said: “An estimate was that the Indian economy will grow by 8-8.5%, the budget assumed 7.5%, at that time. I did not see any agency rating talking about a lower number It’s a dynamic situation…please understand that we are quite integrated into the global economy.”

According to the economic survey, India’s economy is expected to grow by 8-8.5% in the fiscal year beginning April 1.

The International Monetary Fund recently lowered its growth forecast to 8.2%, which is higher than the Reserve Bank of India’s 7.2%.

Also presented at Cannes: Amruta Fadnavis

A walk on the red carpet, a speech at a gathering of influential people and an award. Amruta Fadnavis had a turbulent time at the Cannes Film Festival in France last week.

On May 22, Fadnavis, who runs an NGO called Divyaj Foundation for marginalized people, received an award from the Better World Fund, a Paris-based endowment fund, for bringing “meaningful change and positive impact to the world and transformed our agriculture and transformed our agricultural and food systems”.

The organization, which claims to connect grassroots movements with influential figures in film and business, counts actor Sharon Stone, Prince Albert of Monaco and singer Akon among its supporters. Actor Kiera Chaplin is on its advisory board.

The same day she received the award, Fadnavis walked the film festival red carpet and was the keynote speaker at an event called “Masterminds.” She spoke about agricultural and food sustainability in the Indian context. “It was enriching to share thoughts and ideas with different nationals during the ceremony organized by Better World,” she tweeted on the occasion.

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“Amruta engages in various initiatives for vulnerable people and communities. I am happy that she received this invitation to participate in such a famous forum and also got the recognition,” said former Chief Minister of Maharashtra and husband of Amruta, Devendra Fadnavis. The Indian Express.

Besides Amruta, the Fund also honored the First Lady of Côte d’Ivoire Dominique Ouattara, Stone, actor Skyler Griswold and businessman Stéphane Layani. The organization’s founder, Manuel Collas De La Roche, said The Indian Express that Amruta was chosen for the award because she “is very committed, kind and humble”.

He added: “She works a lot with women, acid attack survivors and around sustainability. As a fund we wanted to showcase someone’s work in India and Amruta is very dedicated.

De La Roche said the organization plans to hold events in Mumbai next year.

The Fund, according to its website, organizes international events with “filmmakers, leaders, businesses and change makers” to make “international commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals a reality”.

The visit to Cannes was not Amruta Fadnavis’ first participation in an international forum. In 2018, she participated in the World Economic Forum’s annual event in Davos, Switzerland. The previous year, she represented Maharashtra at the National Prayer Breakfast Forum for World Peace in Washington, DC.

— With contributions from ENS Mumbai

Russia Takes Small Towns, Aims to Expand Battle of Eastern Ukraine – New York Daily News


As Russia claimed progress in its aim to seize the entirety of disputed eastern Ukraine, President Vladimir Putin on Saturday tried to shake European resolve to punish his country with sanctions and continue to supply weapons that have supported the defense of Ukraine.

The Russian Defense Ministry said Lyman, the second small town to fall to Russia this week, had been “completely liberated” by a joint force of Russian soldiers and Kremlin-backed separatists, who made the war for eight years in the industrial region of Donbass on the Russian border.

Ukraine’s rail system transported weapons and evacuated citizens through Lyman, a key rail hub in the east of the country. Control of it would also give the Russian military another foothold in the region; it has bridges for troops and equipment to cross the Siverskiy Donets River, which has so far hampered the Russian advance into Donbass.

The Kremlin said Putin had an 80-minute phone call with French and German leaders on Saturday in which he warned against continued Western arms transfers to Ukraine and blamed the disruption of supplies global food supply by Western sanctions.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron have called for an immediate ceasefire and a withdrawal of Russian troops, according to the Chancellor’s spokesperson. Both urged Putin to engage in serious direct negotiations with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to end the fighting, the spokesman said.

A Kremlin reading of the call between Macron, Putin and Scholz said the Russian leader had affirmed “the Russian side’s openness to resuming dialogue”. The three leaders, who had gone weeks without speaking to each other in the spring, agreed to stay in touch, according to the reading.

But Russia’s recent progress in Donetsk and Luhansk, the two provinces that make up Donbass, could further embolden Putin. Since failing to occupy Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, Russia has moved to seize the last parts of the region not controlled by the separatists.

“If Russia succeeded in taking control of these areas, it would most likely be seen by the Kremlin as a substantial political achievement and would be presented to the Russian people as justification for the invasion,” the British Ministry of Defense said in a statement on Saturday. Evaluation.

Russia has intensified its efforts to capture the major cities of Sievierodonetsk and nearby Lysychansk, which are the last major areas under Ukrainian control in Luhansk province. Zelenskyy called the situation in the east “difficult” but expressed confidence that his country would prevail with the help of Western weapons and sanctions.

“If the occupiers think that Lyman or Sievierodonetsk will be theirs, they are mistaken. Donbass will be Ukrainian,” he said.

Protests against Putin’s unwarranted war have taken place around the world since he launched the offensive on February 24. On Saturday, activists demonstrated against alleged rapes by Russian troops and the war in general outside the Russian consulate in New York.

The governor of Luhansk reported that Ukrainian fighters repelled an assault on Sievierodonetsk but Russian troops were still pushing to surround them. Speaking to Ukrainian TV later on Saturday, Governor Serhii Haidai said the Russians had seized a hotel on the outskirts of Sievierodonetsk.

Sievierodonetsk Mayor Oleksandr Striuk said on Friday that some 1,500 civilians in the city with a pre-war population of around 100,000 died there during the war, including from lack of medicine or disease. that could not be processed.

The advance of Russian forces raised fears that residents could suffer the same horrors as residents of the southeastern port city of Mariupol in the weeks before its fall. Residents who had not yet fled had to choose between risking it now or staying put.

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Just south of Sievierodonetsk, AP journalists saw elderly and sick civilians locked in soft stretchers and slowly carried down the stairs of an apartment building on Friday in Bakhmut, a town in the northeastern province from Donetsk.

Svetlana Lvova, the manager of two buildings in Bakhmut, tried to convince reluctant residents to leave but said she and her husband would not evacuate until their son, who was in Sieverodonetsk, returned home .

“I need to know he’s alive. That’s why I’m staying here,” said Lvova, 66.

On Saturday, people who managed to flee Lysychansk described intensified shelling, particularly over the past week, which made it impossible for them to leave basement bomb shelters at all.

Yanna Skakova said she left town on Friday with her 18-month-old and 4-year-old sons. She cried as she sat on a train bound for western Ukraine. She said her husband stayed behind to take care of their home and animals.

“It’s too dangerous to stay here now,” she said, wiping away her tears.

A nearly three-month-long siege of Mariupol ended last week when Russia claimed full control of the city. Mariupol has become a symbol of mass destruction and human suffering, as well as Ukrainian determination to defend the country.

50% of rural households have access to piped water connections: government

India has reached the milestone of 50% of rural households having access to tap water, the ministry of Jal Shakti said on Saturday.

In a statement, the ministry said Goa, Telangana, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, Pondicherry and Haryana have already achieved 100% household water connections.

Punjab, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh and Bihar cover over 90% of households and are making rapid progress towards achieving ‘Har Ghar Jal’ status.

The Jal Jeevan mission aims to empower Panchayati Raj institutions and communities by engaging them in water supply projects.

More than 9.59 million rural households spread across states and union territories receive water on their premises, he said.

The ministry said that as of May 27, all households in 108 districts, 1,222 blocks, 71,667 grams of panchayats and 1,51,171 villages were supplied with drinking water through taps.

(Only the title and image of this report may have been edited by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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The Lost Week at Davos 22

President Emmerson Mnangagwa

Zimbabwean leaders have a penchant for pursuing populist things. In a week that could have been used for better things, President Emmerson Mnangagwa and his entourage were in Davos, Switzerland, socializing with the rich and famous, but nothing tangible came of it.

This seems too harsh for the regime which was born via a coup in November 2017. He attends jamborees which make him feel like he is whitewashing the horrible things they are accused of doing at home and gives them photo opportunities to show the lumpen voters of the proletariat. before the crucial general elections of 2023.

For the uninitiated, the World Economic Forum (Wef), is “an international non-governmental and lobbying organization based in Cologny, canton of Geneva, Switzerland. It was founded on January 24, 1971, by German engineer and economist Klaus Schwabannual,” according to the organization’s website.

The organization has been around for over half a century, 51 years to be exact.

What is an international non-governmental organization? What is lobbying?

An international non-governmental organization is an organization which is independent of any governmental intervention and extends the concept of non-governmental organization to an international scope according to

The purpose of an international non-governmental organization is above all to “defend or promote a specific cause”. In this case, Wef is a group of companies and they usually push for better working or operating environments. In their jargon, this means low taxes, tax exemptions, the privatization of state-owned enterprises and the deregulation of foreign exchange. We will come back to what this means for developing countries like Zimbabwe.

We have yet another word to define — lobbying. According to the Oxford dictionary, it means “to seek to influence (a legislator) on a matter”.

Simply put, lobbyists seek to rule behind the scenes. They force elected officials to give up their election manifestos and instead make their offer in exchange for providing thriving economies (big profits for capital).

This is the event Mnangagwa has witnessed for the third time since coming to power. The fruits of stays can be easily seen. The accelerated privatization of state mines (Kuvimba), the privatization of health facilities (Sakunda), the proposed privatization of Air Zimbabwe and the Zimbabwe National Railways, the privatization of power generation and the privatization of roads (concessions). Oh, I forgot the privatization of Cold Storage Commission, the former largest meat processor in sub-Saharan Africa.

The government is on privatization steroids.

Mnangagwa is busy selling the family silverware. Soon everything will be in private hands and Zimbabweans will be in a feudal state.

The Wef speaks in euphemisms to confuse the public. On its website, it says: “The 2022 Annual Meeting will embody the World Economic Forum’s philosophy of collaborative, multi-stakeholder impact, providing a unique collaborative environment in which to reconnect, share ideas, gain new insights and create problem-solving communities and initiatives. Against a backdrop of deepening global frictions and fractures, this will be the starting point for a new era of global responsibility and cooperation.

To prove how futile this endeavor is, one need not look beyond the caliber of the world leaders who have been involved in it. Russia and China, two of the world’s biggest players in politics and economics, did not send their leaders.

Interestingly, these countries are at the heart of what is known as “deepening global frictions and divides”. So, one wonders how to build a “new era of global responsibility and cooperation” without these two?

It may seem simple and sensible to most, but not to Mnangagwa, that participating in the WEF is an exercise in futility. This will not lead the European Union and the United States to lift the economic sanctions against Zimbabwe.

Globally, how is Western attendance at the WEF interpreted in the diplomatic world, given that most investment in Zimbabwe has come from China and Russia over the past decade?

This indicates one thing, Zimbabwe is confused in its foreign policy at worst and a jellied foreign post at worst. And that doesn’t bode well for Zimbabwe.

To further refine this point, the United States passed legislation last week that will control which countries maintain friendly relations with Russia. It came as no surprise, but the culmination of a bloody nose the United States poked out of the United Nations General Assembly in votes it sponsored against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.

Mnangagwa must stop this nonsense of attending a summit or a conference because big names are present. He must weigh what are the benefits of attending such a meeting for Zimbabwe.

Within a week he chartered a private jet to Davos with a bloated entourage and hired supporters to greet him, next in South Africa they were rolling out the red carpet for German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. It was a sort of coup for Cyril Ramaphosa. Germany is the largest economy in the EU.

Without dwelling on the subject, Ramaphosa knows what role German investors play in the South African automotive industry. Doesn’t Mnangagwa see this and the need to talk to our big investors? After all, the West has, over the past two decades, thrown all sorts of sticks to ensure that Zimbabwe’s economy screams – and it does scream.

One more point, if Mnangagwa thinks it’s worth flying tens of thousands of miles to meet with international NGOs and lobbyists, why is he snubbing local NGOs who may also have local solutions to local problems? I guess charity starts at home.

Mnangagwa should come back and urgently tackle spiraling inflation, the rapid depreciation of the local currency against the greenback, cut fuel taxes and raise taxes for big business making super -profits during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

Zimbabwe cannot afford to fly without a rudder, nor outsource its management to private capital. Something has to give before social unrest looms. Mnangagwa and his ilk must stop everything, including stealing, until the household issues are resolved.

Memo Fantasma’s wife faces potential money laundering charges


Colombian prosecutors have held a hearing with the partner of alleged drug trafficker Guillermo León Acevedo, aka ‘Memo Fantasma’, on possible money laundering charges, making her the third member of his family to face charges. charges from the Attorney General’s office.

The hearing with Catalina Mejía Acosta – who is Colombian but lives in Madrid, Spain – was held virtually on May 25, during which the attorney general’s office agreed to delay the filing of charges against Mejía due to a change of attorney. According to court documents, prosecutors are seeking to charge Mejia with aggravated money laundering and illicit enrichment.

Mejía’s defense attorney, David Espinosa Acuña, also asked prosecutors not to bring charges against his client in order to give the new prosecutor time to possibly question Mejía.

Espinosa admitted to the judge that the request was unusual, but he said it could “clear up many questions from the attorney general’s office with respect to my client.”

Julio César Ochoa Forero, a prosecutor in the attorney general’s office, demanded that the defense “undertake to present” Mejia to the Colombian consulate in Spain. Mejía had not previously appeared at the Madrid consulate when she was summoned for an audience.

Although the documents do not provide details of the attorney general’s office’s investigation of Mejía, Mejía is Acevedo’s partner and the mother of his two youngest children.

Acevedo was formally charged with money laundering and criminal association in March, and he is currently incarcerated in La Picota prison in Bogotá. Acevedo faces between 15 and 40 years in prison if convicted.

Acevedo maintained his innocence, saying he was not charged with drug lord Memo Fantasma, or “Will the Ghost.”

SEE ALSO: The Invisible Drug Lord: The “Ghost” Hunt

Acevedo evaded prosecution for decades before being identified as a businessman living in Spain. His life in the shadows was first revealed following the publication of a two-year investigation by InSight Crime in March 2020.

The InSight Crime investigation revealed Memo Fantasma’s links to drug trafficking groups in Colombia and his role in the Central Bolivar Bloc of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia – AUC), the name generic of what was once the Colombian paramilitary shadow. army.

InSight Crime Analytics

Catalina Mejía is the third member of the Acevedo family to be charged as part of his alleged money laundering schemes.

Also accused in this case are Acevedo’s mother, Margoth de Jesús Giraldo, and his grandmother, Maria Enriqueta Ramírez, both accused of laundering funds using a series of properties and businesses linked to Acevedo.

SEE ALSO: Memo Fantasma faces up to 40 years as the lawyer is also under investigation

In a 30-page charging document filed Oct. 20, prosecutors alleged that Acevedo and his family laundered more than 54 billion Colombian pesos (about $14.5 million) through dozens of properties and of companies.

In the charging document, prosecutors detailed the real estate used in the alleged money laundering scheme, including 26 plots in the department of Córdoba, in northern Colombia. Prosecutors allege the properties – worth around 43.3 billion Colombian pesos (about $11.5 million) – can be traced to convicted drug traffickers who then transferred them to companies owned by Acevedo and his family.

Catalina Mejía and Acevedo enjoyed a relationship and lived together in Spain, out of the spotlight, according to the InSight Crime investigation.

The investigation identified several properties belonging to Acevedo in Madrid, as well as two of its companies, which are registered with a law firm in the same city.

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Vietnam and Israel Hold Fourth Political Consultation | Policy

The conference was held via videoconference on May 26 (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) Deputy Foreign Minister Do Hung Viet and political director of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs Alon Bar co-chaired the fourth political consultation conference between the two ministries by videoconference on May 26.

Viet and Bar informed each other about the political and socio-economic situation in their respective countries and spoke highly of the positive progress of comprehensive cooperation between Vietnam and Israel over the years, especially in political, diplomatic, economic, science and technology. , and start.

Viet welcomed the holding of the fourth consultative conference, describing it as an effective mechanism to review and enhance the effectiveness of cooperation between the two countries.

He said Vietnam highly values ​​and hopes to promote multifaceted ties with Israel, and thanked the Israeli government and businesses for helping Vietnam respond to COVID-19.

For his part, Bar said that Israel and Vietnam have additional advantages and have strong potential to further promote their cooperation in the coming times.

As Vietnam and Israel will celebrate the 30th anniversary of their diplomatic relations in 2023, the two sides have agreed on many specific measures to further strengthen the partnership between the two countries, including increasing delegation exchanges and online leaders’ meetings. of both countries. as representatives of ministries, sectors and localities.

They agreed that the two countries should hold activities of cooperation mechanisms, including the third meeting of the Intergovernmental Committee, and expedite the negotiation of important cooperation agreements such as the Vietnam-Israel free trade agreement and an agreement on the work. The two sides should also strengthen cooperation in investment and science-technology, and consider launching a direct airline to facilitate people-to-people exchanges, and increase Israel‘s supports startups and projects from Vietnam.

The two parties also took the opportunity to discuss regional and international issues of common interest./.

The Ministry of Immigration is preparing to decongest prisons thanks to repatriations

The Central Region Office of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship Services has revealed that it will embark on a repatriation exercise next week targeting irregular migrants who have served their custodial sentences in Malawi prisons.

The exercise will likely decongest prisons, which are currently operating beyond capacity.

“The Central Regional Immigration Office has been engaged on several occasions to intervene in the situation at Maula Correctional Facility, which currently has over 3,000 inmates. The reception and repatriation of such a large number of irregular migrants in our prisons drains a lot of resources that could have contributed to the national development of the country,” said Zulu.

He added, “As such, nationalism and patriotism has been a key message to all Malawians to stop aiding and abetting illegal immigrants as they also pose a security threat to their communities. the nationality”.

Zulu said that despite insufficient resources to meet the challenge head-on, the leadership opted for a mechanism of inter-state consultations on migration and also for the engagement of international partners.

He said the first cohort comprising 114 Ethiopian nationals is expected to be repatriated out of Malawi via Kamuzu International Airport on Tuesday, May 31, 2022, fully sponsored by the International Organization for Migration (IOM).

“As of Wednesday May 25, statistics from Maula Jail and Kachere Jail Young Offenders on irregular migrants in immigration custody are close to 300 who have breached immigration laws and the numbers include at both detention and pre-trial detention. In this regard, the Department of Immigration warns all perpetrators involved in this syndicate to have aided and abetted in the strongest possible terms that once caught in malpractice, the long arm of the law will run its course. Zulu explained.

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Texas A&M AgriLife Announces Center Move to Canyon


The Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Amarillo will move to Canyon to complete an agricultural research, education, and outreach facility on the campus of West Texas A&M University.

Looking north across Russell Long Boulevard in Canyon, the future home of the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center will be located on the northeast corner of the West Texas A&M University campus adjacent to the WT Agricultural Science Complex. . (West Texas A&M University photo by Darcy Lively)

Funding for the new $30 million center was approved May 19 by the Texas A&M University Board of Regents. Of that total, $20 million will come from the Permanent University Fund created by the state of Texas and $10 million from Texas A&M AgriLife Research and the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service.

Chancellor John Sharp announced the decision during a May 25 press conference at Texas A&M Veterinary Education, Research and Outreach, VERO, on the WT campus. The new facility will be constructed east of the Charles W. “Doc” Graham ’53 DVM, The Texas A&M University System Center, which includes VERO and the Charles W. Graham DVM Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory, TVMDL, building.

“We’re here today to announce something that only the Texas A&M University System could have accomplished. We’re bringing all of our resources together in one place,” Sharp said. collaboration right here in Canyon. It will be a real game-changer for agribusiness in Texas.”

Construction is expected to be completed in early 2024 at the northeast corner of the WT campus. The building will accommodate around sixty employees working for the AgriLife Research and AgriLife Extension agencies.

Maintain a strong Texas A&M AgriLife presence in the Panhandle

Texas A&M AgriLife has 13 centers across the state that house both AgriLife research and AgriLife extension staff who support districts and regions.

“Texas A&M AgriLife Research is headquartered in College Station, but we are a statewide institution of Texas, and our centers are imperative to ensuring that each region of the state conducts research in its unique environment. said Cliff Lamb. , Ph.D., director of AgriLife Research. “Here in the Panhandle, we look forward to expanding our research programs in beef cattle, small grains, environmental quality, natural resources, pest management, cropping systems and bioenergy. “

AgriLife Research has led the nation in six of the past eight years in agricultural research spending, with more than $223.5 million in fiscal year 2021, Lamb said.

“Much of this is dedicated to supporting Texas produce, reflecting our agency’s dedication to growers and ensuring a thriving industry across Texas,” he said.

Rick Avery, Ph.D., director of AgriLife Extension, said the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Amarillo has a long history of service and highlights the importance of AgriLife’s mission – to create solutions. to agriculture and natural resource issues by the state – cutting-edge research, then ensuring that the information is useful and extended to the great state of Texas.

“This center has been instrumental in positively impacting the success of agricultural producers, the youth of the Panhandle, and improving the health of our audience,” said Avery. “This center is the professional development location for our county AgriLife Extension agents and other key educators and specialists to learn the latest technologies, best practices and methods that are improving the lives of Texans.

“Additionally, this center serves as the primary location for agricultural producers, county judges and commissioners, and industry leaders to interact with AgriLife Extension staff. Together, we are committed to creating solutions for a changing world, where agriculture and health are more important than ever.

Complete the agricultural orientation of the university

WT President Walter V. Wendler said the move complements West Texas A&M University’s sincere focus on agricultural issues across the Texas Panhandle and beyond.

This new building on Russell Long Boulevard will be consolidated with the VERO building; the TVMDL building; and the WT Agricultural Science Complex, which contains the Happy State Bank Academic and Research Building, the Caviness Meat Science and Innovation Center, the Piehl-Schaeffer Pavilion, and the Bath Event Center.

“What the Texas A&M University System Board of Regents has created on this campus is unprecedented in regional higher education across the country,” Wendler said. “The opportunities made possible by this partnership will advance the research and outreach missions of all our institutions.”

The move further solidifies WT as a regional research university, the overarching goal of its long-term plan, WT 125: From the Panhandle to the World.

This plan is powered by One West’s historic $125 million global fundraising campaign. To date, the five-year campaign — which launched publicly on September 23 — has raised around $110 million.

Synergy for education, extension and research

Brent Auvermann, Ph.D., center director at the Amarillo facility, said AgriLife Research and AgriLife Extension will be strengthened by the synergy that relies on expertise, organization, programming, outreach and student participation due to the close proximity of both facilities and staff.

“We expect to have more exposure to graduate and undergraduate students than WT has because we rely on them so much for our programs,” he said, estimating that around 40 students are already supervised by the AgriLife Research and AgriLife Extension professors at all times.

Additionally, Auvermann said the co-location of AgriLife Research’s globally recognized program will help grow WT’s agricultural research portfolio.

“Our programs are built and supported by external contracts and grants,” he said. “We have created tremendous momentum by bringing these resources to the Panhandle, and we want to leverage them to accelerate the development of WT’s research portfolio while enriching the educational experiences of its students.

“That synergy happens best when we’re across the wall, around the corner, or just down the sidewalk from each other. We want to build a real community of practice, and we have to be face to face to achieve that.

Auvermann said putting all of these tightly-knit organizations next to each other strengthens the integration of Texas A&M AgriLife’s land-grant mission with WT’s education and research missions.

“This building will be the Texas A&M Embassy in the Texas Panhandle,” he said. “We want the new Texas A&M AgriLife Center in Canyon to be used for community outreach and outreach as well as cutting-edge research, just as our current facility is today,” he said.

In Amarillo, the Texas A&M AgriLife Center welcomes more than 3,500 people each year who complete nearly 11,000 education contact hours.

“We will continue to host events, raise awareness, and advance science and engineering in support of Panhandle agriculture. We will just do better,” Auvermann said.


Mass shooting at Texas elementary school


Less than two miles from Robb Elementary School, where at least 19 children and two adults were killed by a mass shooter on Tuesday, Leon Civic Center’s SSGT Willie has become the epicenter of families searching for their children .

For more than 12 hours, families gathered in silence outside the center which served as a polling station for the second round of elections on Tuesday awaiting updates.

At least four families told CNN that parents were asked for DNA swabs to confirm their relationship to their children and were told to wait an hour for a response.

A father, who had just learned that his child had died, held back tears as several of his cousins ​​embraced him.

A few yards away, a grandmother who had driven from San Antonio said she wouldn’t stop praying for her 10-year-old granddaughter while she waited for the results of DNA samples.

Inside the civic center, city workers were handing out pizza, snacks and water to families. Some parents waited in silence or sobbed quietly as a group of children sat on the floor and played with teddy bears. Later, a group of local pastors and chaplains arrived to offer support to the families.

Zinna Aguilera, a 61-year-old accountant who lives opposite the primary school, said she first learned of the shooting when a friend called her, asking if her granddaughter had stayed at home on Tuesday.

“It’s sad. You never imagined this was going to happen in Uvalde, Texas. I lived here 32 years, went to this school, my sisters, my brothers, my grandkids, my girls, everyone. If you lived in that area, you went to that school,” Aguilera says.

Residents of this predominantly Hispanic neighborhood sat outside their homes after the shooting, some with family while others gathered with neighbors.

“We’ve been in this neighborhood forever, we have cousins, brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews who live on the same streets or a few blocks away,” Aguilera said.

Opposite the school, Adolfo Cruz was waiting for news of his 10-year-old granddaughter.

The 69-year-old air conditioning contractor fielded calls from concerned family and friends while watching local and state law enforcement officers walk inside the school building.

Cruz, a cancer survivor, said he couldn’t give up hope but wondered how no school resource officer could have stopped the shooter from entering campus.

“Where were they (the officers)? How did he get through the school fence? said Cruz.

Adela Martinez and her husband Paul Martinez, a former city council member and former furniture store owner, spoke of the grief spreading through the town of 16,000.

“We are like a big family here. You can expect something like this (filming) in big cities like New York, but in Uvalde? If it happened here, I now think it could happen anywhere,” Adela Martinez said.

New Ministry Secretaries Receive Letters of Appointment

The new ministry secretaries received their appointment letters from President Gotabaya Rajapaksa today.

Appointment letters of newly appointed Secretaries to Cabinet Ministries were delivered by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at the President’s House in Colombo this evening (24).

The list of newly appointed Secretaries to Cabinet Ministries is as follows.

01: Mr. RWR Pemasiri – Ministry of Transport and Roads

02: Mr. MMPK Mayadunne – Ministry of Public Administration, Interior, Provincial Councils and Territorial Communities

03: Mr. KDS Ruwanchandra – Ministry of Ports, Navigation and Aviation

04: MST Kodikara – Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Food Security

05: Ms. Wasantha Perera – Ministry of Justice, Corrections and Constitutional Reforms

06: MS Hettiarachchi – Ministry of Public Security

07: Mr. MN Ranasinghe – Ministry of Education

08: Mr. MPDUK Mapa Pathirana – Ministry of Electricity and Energy

09: Mrs. RMI Ratnayake – Ministry of Fisheries

10: Mr. Monti Ranatunga – Ministry of Water Supply

11: Mr. UDC Jayalal – Ministry of Irrigation

12: Mr. Anuradha Wijekoon – Ministry of Sports and Youth

13: Dr. Anil Jasinghe – Ministry of Environment

14: Mr. Anusha Palpita – Ministry of Media

15: Mr. MBR Pushpakumara – Ministry of Agriculture

16: Mr. Somaratne Vidanapathirana – Buddhasasana, Ministry of Religious and Cultural Affairs

17: General (Retired) Daya Ratnayake – Ministry of Industries

18: Ms. Aruni Wijewardena – Ministry of Foreign Affairs

19: Mr. BLAJ Dharmakeerthi – Ministry of Plantation Industries

20: Ms. RMCM Herath – Ministry of Wildlife and Forest Resources Conservation

21: Mr. SJS Chandragupta – Ministry of Health

22: Mr. PHC Ratnayake – Ministry of Urban Planning and Housing

23: Mr. RPA Wimalaweera – Ministry of Labor and Employment of Foreigners

(Colombo Official Gazette)

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Opinion: Taiwan’s future lies in China’s national reunification

As the World Health Assembly (WHA) progresses, authorities belonging to the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) of Taiwan are promoting the so-called “Taiwan joining the World Health Organization ( WHO)”, once again, under the pretext of the pandemic. Their real intention is to seek “Taiwan independence” and expand its “international space” with the help of some Western countries. Such attempts are doomed to failure.

The Taiwan region is an inalienable part of Chinese territory. Regarding the Taiwan region’s participation in the activities of international organizations, including the WHO, China’s position is consistent and clear, that is, it should be managed in accordance with the one-China principle. . United Nations General Assembly Resolution 2758 explicitly recognizes representatives of the government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) as the only legitimate representatives of China [Taiwan] at the United Nations. Resolution WHA 25.1 explicitly recognizes representatives of the PRC as the only legitimate representatives of China [Taiwan] at the WHO.

The Chinese central government attaches great importance to the health and well-being of compatriots in the Taiwan region and has made appropriate arrangements for Taiwan’s participation in global health affairs on the precondition of adhering to the principle of one China. As of April 28, the central government has given the Taiwan region 386 updates on the Covid-19 situation, and over the past year, the central government has approved the participation of 47 public health experts in 44 groups in the Taiwan region to WHO technical activities. Channels for Taiwan to obtain information and participate in the international response to Covid-19 are unimpeded.

The Taiwan issue concerns China’s core interests and is the red line that cannot be disputed. There is only one China in the world. The government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legal government representing the whole of China. These facts are recognized by the UN resolution and constitute the universal consensus of the international community. Taiwan’s future lies in the national reunification of China. Any attempt to create the so-called “Taiwan independence”, “two Chinas” or “one China, one Taiwan” will lead nowhere and is doomed to failure.

I advise the DPP authorities to stop exploiting the pandemic to engage in political manipulation.

Wang Xiaojian is press counselor and spokesperson for the Chinese Embassy in India. His article follows the article by Baushuan Ger, Taiwan’s ambassador to India, which THE WEEK had published.

Booming Social Customer Service Software Market Globally with Top Key Players – Zendesk, Salesforce, Freshworks, Sprout Social, Zoho, Sprinklr, CX Social, Conversocial, Lithium Technologies, Sparkcentral, Cisco, Oracle, Brand Embassy, HelpSocial


Global market research examines the performance of social customer service software 2022. It contains an in-depth analysis of the state of social customer service software and the competitive landscape on a global scale. Global Social Customer Service Software can be obtained through market details such as growth drivers, latest developments, Social Customer Service Software business strategies, regional study and future status of the market. The report also covers information including the latest opportunities and challenges in the plastic additives industry, as well as historical future trends and social customer service software. It focuses on the dynamics of social customer service software that is constantly changing due to technological advancements and socioeconomic status.

Key players studied in the Social Customer Service Software report:

Zendesk, Salesforce, Freshworks, Sprout Social, Zoho, Sprinklr, CX Social, Conversocial, Lithium Technologies, Sparkcentral, Cisco, Oracle, Brand Embassy, ​​HelpSocial

Get a free copy of the 2022 Social Customer Service Software Report: https://www.maccuracyreports.com/report-sample/336908

A recent study on Social Customer Service Software analyzes the crucial factors of Social Customer Service Software based on current industry situations, market demands, business strategies adopted by Social Customer Service Software players, and their growth scenario. This report isolates Social Customer Service Software based on key players, type, application, and regions. First of all, the Social Customer Service Software report will offer in-depth knowledge of the company profile, their core products and specifications, revenue generated, production cost, contact person. The report covers forecast and analysis of Social Customer Service Software at global and regional level.

COVID-19 impact analysis:

In this report, the pre and post COVID impact on market growth and development is well described for better understanding of the Social Customer Service Software on the basis of financial and industry analysis. The COVID outbreak has affected a number of social customer service software is not a challenge. However, the dominating players in the global Social Customer Service Software are determined to adopt new strategies and seek new funding resources to overcome the growing hurdles for market growth.

Access full report description, table of contents, table of figure, chart, etc. @ https://www.maccuracyreports.com/reportdetails/reportview/336908

The types of products uploaded in the social customer service software are:

On-premises, cloud-based

The main applications of this report are:

Large companies, SMEs

The geographic region of social customer service software includes:

Social customer service software in North America (United States, North American countries and Mexico),
European market (Germany, French plastic additives market, United Kingdom, Russia and Italy),
Asia-Pacific market (China, plastic additives market in Japan and Korea, Asian country and Southeast Asia),
South America plastic additive regions include (Brazil, Argentina, Republic of Colombia, etc.),
Plastic Additive Africa (Saudi Peninsula, United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Nigeria and South Africa)

The Plastic Additive report provides past, present and future Plastic Additive industry size, trends, and forecast information related to expected revenue, growth, Plastic Additive, and Plastic Additive supply scenario. In addition, the opportunities and threats for the development of the Social Customer Service Software forecast period from 2022 to 2029.

Please click here today to purchase the full report @ https://www.maccuracyreports.com/checkout/336908

In addition, the Plastic Additives report gives information about the company profile, market share and contact details, along with an analysis of the Plastic Additives industry value chain, rules and methodologies. from the Plastic Additives industry, circumstances driving the growth of Social Customer Service Software and the constraint blocking the growth. . The development scope of the Social Customer Service Software and various business strategies are also mentioned in this report.

Breads Bakery wins the Best Baguette New York 2022 contest at the French Consulate


No one was there for a new passport. In front of the majestic Charles E. Mitchell mansion that houses the French consulate in New York, a hungry crowd waited its turn, eager for a bite of French bread. Organized by French Morning, the preeminent French news site in the United States, this competition and the accompanying gastronomic show saw 15 finalist bakers (selected by readers) present their baguettes in front of a jury of experts and a public ready to vote.

Soon, foodies from all five boroughs were roaming the beautiful gilded halls above Central Park, biting into crisp, golden baguettes but also Provençal focaccia, sourdough spheres studded with soft olives, loaves of dark rye and all sorts of cheeses and charcuterie. . Late in the evening, the judges, including chef Laurent Tourondel and photographer Melanie Dunea, sampled, evaluated and argued. Chopsticks have been categorized based on their appearance, aroma, structure, and of course, flavor. In the end, the sharp and chewy sourdough baguette from Breads Bakery came out on top. Bread Story, founded by former Maison Kayser baker Yann Ledoux, came second and also won the special prize. Bourke Street Bakery came third.

“At Breads Bakery’s, I tasted the flavor of real flour,” Tourondel said. “An alliance of lightness and crispness, almost honeycombed, a true French traditional baguette.

Breads Bakery landed on Union Square in New York in 2013, and today owner Gadi Peleg runs four different outposts. Although he’s known for his scrumptious chocolate babka and rugelach, he’s happy to get his baguette noticed.

“In our bakeries,” he said recently, “we bake all day long, every day. The bread is the hero. When they first started making chopsticks, not all customers approved of their grip.

“With all due respect,” Mr. Peleg said, “this is our path. This is the wand we love.

In the expert hands of head baker Darwin Castillo and his team, sourdough takes 48 hours to become a baguette. Both points are sharp and crispy, while the first bite gives a chewy and very sour mouthfeel. Blisters on the crust mean more fermentation and stronger flavor.

“During the pandemic, I used to come here every day,” said regular Claire Steinberger. “And with bread they offered comfort.”

It is to bring comfort but also pleasure that the founder of French Morning, Emmanuel Saint-Martin, created the competitions for the best baguettes and the best croissants in more than ten cities in the United States and Canada. This year, a major player, Maison Kayser, closed its doors, but half of the candidates are new to New York.

“We wanted to promote artisan bakers and offer our community a culinary and cultural feat,” said Mr. Saint-Martin.

The image of the Frenchman and his beret holding a crusty baguette under his arm might be a cliché, but rumor has it that every French citizen eats around 5.5 ounces of baguette a day. What are the origins of the wand? Well, this being France where Paul Bocuse was known to divide his days between three different women, there are three viable theories:

One historian places its invention with Napoleon’s bakers and the ease with which it was carried into the pockets of soldiers; another credits August Zang, a Viennese baker who may have invented the baguette and brought it to France. Finally, the baguette may have been invented in 1900 during the massive construction of the Paris metro. But historian and bread expert Steven Kaplan doesn’t believe any of these fables are true.

“The baguette is the result of the modern evolution of the baker’s craft,” he said, “as well as the evolution of public taste.”

To learn more about bread, check out his excellent book Good bread is back: a contemporary history of French bread, how it is made and the people who make it (Duke University Press Books).

Labor campaign star Jason Clare could be the new Home Secretary

The defeat of shadow cabinet ministers Kristina Keneally and Terri Butler opened up two immediate vacancies among the 30-person ministry.

Ms Keneally, of NSW Right, was the party’s home affairs spokeswoman and deputy leader of the Senate.

The deputy role will likely be filled by South Australian broker Don Farrell if he chooses, although that would leave only Senator Wong as the only female member of Labour’s four-person leadership team.

Sources said Mr Clare, who is housing spokesman and crafted the Labor Party’s centerpiece shared housing policy, could be rewarded with promotion to the highest profile and most important in domestic affairs.

The other option is Brendan O’Connor who could be moved from defense. Mr Marles is widely tipped to become defense minister and currently administers the department under the interim ministerial arrangements.

Mr O’Connor and Mr Clare were both Home Secretary in the Rudd and Gillard governments when the portfolio was much smaller, and dealt first hand with the catastrophic rise in boat arrivals.

A source said the right would prefer to retain the role of Home Affairs to prevent a loosening of policy, although Mr O’Connor was sufficiently marked in the portfolio to push Labor to accept the need to deter boat arrivals .

Ms Keneally’s vacancy was created after she failed in her bid to move to Fowler in Sydney’s west after a backlash from locals, who backed independent Dai Le.

Ms Keneally’s bid for change was necessitated after the powerful Shop Assistants Union insisted that backbench MP Deborah O’Neill be given first place on the NSW Senate ticket.

While Senator O’Neill is one of the names in the mix for the vacancy, sources said there was a lot of anger against her for forcing Ms Keneally to parachute into Fowler and ultimately lose the seat , hampering Labor’s efforts to form a majority government.

As well as Ms Keneally’s vacancy, the right must also nominate another woman to ensure the party meets its 45 per cent affirmative action target for women in ministry.

The right must also provide additional ministers in the Senate, to help share the burden of question time and estimates. Senator Farrell is the only right-wing member of the Senate, compared to three from the left.

The favorite to replace left-wing Ms Butler, who was environment spokeswoman, at the department is NSW Senator Jenny McAllister, who serves as cabinet secretary and is close to Mr Albanese.

But what complicates matters is that West Australians are demanding greater representation after a stunning performance that saw Labor win four seats in the lower house of government, and likely a seat in the Senate as well.

Sources said Perth MP Patrick Gorman had shown interest but could be ruled out on gender grounds, while Cowan MP Anne Aly and Senator Louise Pratt are also putting forward their demands.

“They can’t even agree on who their nominee will be because they all want him,” a senior source said.

Student Visa Day at US Consulate Hyderabad


Posted: Posted Date – 10:39 PM, Sat – 21 May 22

Hyderabad: June 7 is Student Visa Day at the US Embassy and Consulates in India, including the US Consulate General in Hyderabad. It is a day dedicated entirely to student visa applicants.

In preparation for Student Visa Day, we will be spending a few weeks focusing on student visa issues.

We place immense value on international students and their contributions to strengthening people-to-people bonds, promoting academic excellence, and strengthening our economies through advanced research and cutting-edge technologies.

This is especially true for Indian students. In fact, Indians are the second largest group of international students in the United States – after China – and we would like to see that number grow.

Of course, one of the most important steps to study in the United States is obtaining a student visa. The U.S. Mission to India understands how critical a timely visa interview is for Indians wishing to attend universities in the United States, which is why we continue to prioritize students for visa interviews.

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, we surveyed over 120,000 students in 2021 – making 2021 one of our biggest years. And we expect another record student season this summer. In anticipation, we have opened thousands of additional visa appointments and expanded our interview waiver options for students.

Under the new visa guidelines, students who have previously held a US visa can apply using the Dropbox service instead of an in-person interview. Additionally, our visa adjudicators will focus first and foremost on student visas over the next three months.

These are just two of many measures we are taking to facilitate travel for as many qualified student applicants as possible and make 2022 a year of recovery. And what a great way to also mark the 75th anniversary of American-Indian relations!

Next week we will continue to focus on student visas by going deeper into the basic qualifications we look for in student visa applications.

— Consulate General of the United States in Hyderabad

India and Singapore condemn terrorism and stress the need for international cooperation

May 21, 2022 8:32 p.m. STI

Singapore, 21st May (ANI): India and Singapore have underscored their commitment to counter-terrorism cooperation while condemning terrorism in all its forms, besides emphasizing the importance of enhancing international collaboration to combat terrorism.
At the 4th Meeting of the Joint India-Singapore Working Group (JWG) on Countering Terrorism and Transnational Crime held in Singapore from May 18-19, the two nations strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms. forms and manifestations.
“As strategic partners, India and Singapore have strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms, including cross-border terrorism, and underscored the need for enhanced international cooperation to combat terrorism comprehensively,” reads- on in a statement from the Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).
Mahaveer Singhvi, Joint Secretary for Counter Terrorism, Ministry of External Affairs, India and Puah Kok Keong, Deputy Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, Singapore co-chaired the meeting.

The JWG also stressed that all countries must take immediate and sustained action to ensure that no territory under their control is used for terrorist attacks against others and agreed on the need to bring perpetrators of these terrorist attacks.
The two sides discussed issues relating to the challenges facing the fight against terrorism, including cross-border movements of terrorists, the fight against the financing of terrorism, the fight against radicalization and the prevention of Internet exploitation at terrorist purposes.
Discussions also took place on national, regional and global terrorist threats, cybercrime, drug trafficking and the link between terrorism and transnational organized crime.
Both parties reaffirmed their commitment to working closely together to address these challenges and discussed ways to deepen engagement between their respective agencies, particularly in the area of ​​information sharing and best practices, law enforcement and capacity building to counter terrorism and transnational crimes.
The JWG also exchanged views on deepening cooperation in multilateral fora such as the UN, ASEAN and FATF. (ANI)

“More than 500,000 zim immigrants have been forced to return home”

AN estimates half a million Zimbabwean immigrants overseas have been forced to return home since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the latest report from the International Organization for Migration (IOM). ).

“By the end of 2021, more than 472,409 migrants had returned to Zimbabwe since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Most of these returnees were arriving in communities with limited means to support themselves,” reads IOM’s annual report for 2022.

There are no exact statistics on the number of Zimbabweans outside the country, but estimates put the figure at around three million.

Reports show that Zimbabwean immigrants to South Africa have borne the brunt of the effects of that country’s prolonged lockdown, which has left many of them without sources of income.

A number of Zimbabweans have registered to be sent home.

“IOM continues to support government efforts to build migration management capacity, implement protection and recovery projects, respond to natural disasters and other displacement-causing emergencies, and improve health outcomes for migrants and refugees. communities affected by migration,” the IOM report adds.

  • Follow us on Twitter @NewsDayZimbabwe

USAID promotes regional trade between Pakistan and Kazakhstan


May 19.2022, Almaty, Kazakhstan The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) facilitates the expansion of bilateral trade between Pakistan and Kazakhstan and helped organize the third “Made in Pakistan” trade event at the Atakent Exhibition Center in Almaty, Kazakhstan, May 19-23. Dr. Sajjad Ahmed Seehar, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan to the Republic of Kazakhstan, and Ryder Rogers, Director of USAID’s Economic Development Office for Central Asia, opened the exhibit on May 19.

In his opening remarks, Dr. Sajjad Ahmed Seehar welcomed the Pakistani companies present and commended the role of USAID and the governments of Pakistan and Kazakhstan in organizing the third “Made in Pakistan” exhibition. . He said the event was a positive step in the development of lasting business relations between the two countries and across the region, highlighting the operational and financial support of the organizers to the companies present. The expo not only develops trade relations between nations, he said, but also creates bonds between people.

Director of USAID’s Economic Development Office for Central Asia, Ryder Rogers, thanked the governments and embassies of Pakistan and Kazakhstan for their commitment to strengthening trade ties. “Mutually beneficial economic trade is an essential element in creating broad-based prosperity for the people of Kazakhstan and Pakistan. This event is an important step to explore possibilities for closer regional cooperation,” he said.

This exhibition was organized by USAID/Pakistan in collaboration with the Ministry of Commerce of Pakistan, Trade Development Authority of Pakistan, Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan in Kazakhstan, Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Pakistan and Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry. .

A total of 53 Pakistani companies set up 60 booths at the expo, showcasing products such as:

  • Textiles (including home textiles, towels, fabrics and clothing)

  • Surgical instruments

  • Sporting goods (including sportswear)

  • Construction products (including paints and coatings)

  • Handicrafts, salt and onyx/marble products

  • Food products, including confectionery (rice, tea, pulses, cereals, vegetables, fruits, dried fruits, food colorings, juices and spices)

  • Skin care and herbal products (including pharmaceuticals and nutritional supplements)

  • Leather products

  • Kitchen utensils, silverware, hunting knives and cutlery

USAID’s Pakistan Regional Economic Integration Activity is a seven-year initiative that aims to develop Pakistan’s trade sector and strengthen its regional integration with Central Asian countries.


USAID is the world’s premier international development agency and a catalyst for development results. For more information, visit the USAID Central Asia website: https://www.usaid.gov/central-asia-regional and Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/USAIDCentralAsia.

Requirements and Process for Obtaining a Greek Passport


One of the most frequently asked questions at the Greek City Times is: “How can I get a Greek passport?”

The biggest mistake made by those trying to acquire one is that they do not go through the right channels. We’re here to tell you that the easiest and most direct way to get your Greek passport is through a lawyer. Follow this advice and you will thank us later. Going through someone else who is not a lawyer will end up costing you more in the long run and taking a lot longer.

A Greek lawyer will do just about anything for you, seamlessly and stress-free. They are very familiar with the laws and legal system in Greece and will guide you through the process (trust the process). A lawyer is like a one-stop-shop, leaving you stress-free and confident in your quest.

Understandably, for many who don’t know where to start, even finding a reputable, efficient and experienced lawyer, especially one who specializes in this area, can be a daunting task in itself. But don’t be afraid. Greek City Times has done the hard work for you and found an exceptionally honest, reliable and knowledgeable attorney whose services are available worldwide. No matter what corner of the world you live in, you can rest assured that you are covered.

Greek City Times recently spoke with Greek lawyer John Tripidakis of Tripidakis & Associates, who provided the helpful information below on obtaining your Greek passport.

Exceptionally, there are a number of certificates to which the newly regulated legislation does not apply and the Athens Special Registry remains competent for the registrations:

According to Chapter C. of Law 4674/2020 (published in the Official Gazette of the Greek Government on March 11, 2020, 53A’), in force since January 1, 2022, birth, marriage and death certificates that took place abroad and involve Greeks registered citizens or citizens of Greek descent as well as changes to these certificates, will be registered primarily by the Greek Consulate directly in the “Citizens Register” system.

1. Certificates from Greek consulates and foreign registers, provided that they have been drawn up and issued accordingly by 31.12.2021,

2. Changes in civil status and corrections on civil status records that have been registered by the Athens Special Registry,

3. The Greek Consulate remains competent simultaneously with the Special Register of Athens for the registration of civil status events that took place abroad and involved Greek citizens in exceptional circumstances regulated in nr. 45927/18-06-2021 Ministerial Order, except for those for which the Greek Consulate must write the registration certificate (“lixiarhiki praxi”) according to the clarification circular nr. 697/2021 of the Civil and Municipal Status Administration of the Ministry of the Interior “Amendment to the Register Regulation, Access of Greek Consular Authorities to the Information System of the Citizens Register”.

For information :

a. registration of modifications on certificates already registered in the Athens special register, for which a Greek decision recognizing the foreign modification is required,

b. registration of events that have not been promptly registered at the Greek consulate and the parties concerned now reside in Greece or in a country other than where the event took place,

vs. registration of events for which the residence of the person concerned is more than 500 km from the Greek consulate or if there is no Greek consulate,

D. registration of corrections of civil status certificates under final and enforceable court decisions in accordance with the procedure of the Greek Civil Code Art. 782,

e. registration of civil status events, when the functioning of the Greek consulate has been seized for exceptional reasons (pandemic crisis, war, interruption of diplomatic relations),

F. Vital events that took place within the jurisdiction of the Greek consulate (“amistha”) are registered either with the nearest Greek consulate (“emmistho”) or directly with the special registry in Athens.

4. The Athens Special Register has the right to draw up reports for changes in the civil status of Greek citizens that have taken place abroad (all the occasions mentioned above in No. 3 except of d.) as well as reports of an informative nature in case of consensual divorces issued under notarial deeds signed in Greece, provided that the consensual divorce dissolves the marriage which has been registered in the register of citizens by a Greek consulate after on 01/01/2022. In these cases, citizens can apply either to the Athens Special Registry or to the local Greek Consulate.

Greek consulates (“amistha”) will not have access to the citizens’ register and therefore they will not write register certificates (“lixiarhikespraxeis”).

However, in order for a lawyer to proceed with the registration of deeds with the Athens Special Register which have been drawn up or issued up to 31/12/2021, he must have been authorized by the client under a power of attorney dated until 31/12/2021.

Acquire Greek citizenship

Greek nationality is acquired at birth to a Greek parent, in or out of wedlock (recognition by a Greek father art. 2) or at birth on Greek territory (art. 1). For the recognition of Greek nationality, an application must be submitted with all the required documents to the competent municipality [and then it should be forwarded to the Competent Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, which is the Competent Region; upon review of the file, a decision of the Competent Region will be issued recognising the Greek nationality of the applicant. The competent department of the region should then issue a decision ordering the registration of the applicant with the Greek Male Rolls and Municipal Rolls. Then, the person should proceed with his/ her registration with a Greek Municipality (the Municipality with which his/ her ancestors were registered) and procure a certificate of registration. Another way of acquiring the Greek citizenship is through naturalisation (Art. 5 or 10) or through the procedure of statement (Art. 14).

Depending on the applicable procedure, the necessary documents indicatively are the following:

Greek citizenship at birth from a Greek parent (Art. 1)

  1. Petition of the interested party;
  2. Certificate of the Greek parent’s registration with the Greek Municipality;
  3. Marriage certificate of the parents, Apostiled or certified by the Greek Consulate and translated into Greek;
  4. Certificate of birth of the applicant, Apostiled or certified by the Greek Consulate and translated into Greek;
  5. Certified Copy of the passport of the applicant, translated into Greek or of  the residence permit.

Greek citizenship of child born out of wedlock acknowledged by a Greek father (Art.2)

  1. Notarial acknowledgment by the Greek father or final and absolute ruling of acknowledgment issued by a Greek Court (or a proof of acknowledgment, as indicated by the applicable foreign law), certified and translated into Greek;
  2. Certificate of registration in Greece of the Greek father who acknowledged the applicant;
  3. Birth certificate of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  4. Foreign certificate of family status of the foreign mother or certificate/letter of non-impediment of the mother, certified and translated into Greek;
  5. Certified Copy of the passport of the applicant, translated into Greek or of the residence permit.

Greek citizenship of child born prior to 8-5-1984 by a Greek at the time of birth or at the time of the marriage mother (Art. 14 par. 1)

  1. Submission of statement of the applicant before the General Secretary of the Decentralised Administration or the Greek Consulate of the place of his/her residence;
  2. Certificate of birth of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  3. Marriage certificate of the parents of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  4. Certificate of registration of the mother with the Greek Municipality;
  5. Certified Copy of the passport of the applicant, translated into Greek or of her residence permit.

Greek citizenship of child born by a Greek father prior to the enforcement of law 1250/1982 (Art. 14 par. 2)

  1. Submission of statement of the applicant before the General Secretary of the Decentralised Administration or the Greek Consulate of the place of his/her residence;
  2. Certificate of birth of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  3. Marriage certificate of the parents of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  4. Certificate of registration of the father with the Greek Municipality;
  5. Certified Copy of the passport of the applicant, translated into Greek or of the residence permit.

Naturalisation of Greek ancestry applicants according to Article 10

The Greek Consulate must provide the following documents required for the Greek citizenship process of the applicant to the Ministry of Internal Affairs which are in principle the following:

  1. Petition for the naturalisation signed by the applicant which must be filed before the Greek Consular who will certify the signature;
  2. Statement for the naturalisation filed in and submitted by the applicant filed before the Greek Consul who will certify the signature;
  3. Copy of the applicant’s passport, certified by the Greek Consulate;
  4. Certificate of birth, Apostiled or certified and translated into Greek;
  5. Certificate of the parents’ marriage, Apostiled or certified and translated into Greek;
  6. Certificate of the Greek parent’s registration with the Greek Municipality;
  7. Certificate of criminal record (“poiniko mitrwo”) of the applicant issued by the competent Authority of the applicant’s country;

All these documents (and any supplementary document that might be required by the Greek Consul) must be filed before the Greek Consulate and must be forwarded by the Greek Consulate to the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Athens in order for the Minister, following the opinion of the Ministry of Public Order to issue the Decision in reference to the petition for naturalisation.

All the above procedures can be expedited and facilitated through the intervention of a lawyer.

All the above procedures can be expedited and facilitated through the intervention of a lawyer.

 In Greek citizenship cases such as of Art. 14 or Determination of Greek citizenship in cases of acknowledgment by a Greek father (Art. 2), the lawyer’s assistance is critical for the simplification and acceleration of the process. However, there are cases such as the naturalisation process of Article 10 where the procedure is undertaken exclusively by the Greek Consulate. Even in these cases, the lawyer is useful since he/she will follow up by contacting the involved authorities in Greece, will provide clarifications to the client, will translate the documents, keep track of the applicant’s file, etc.

By John Tripidakis LL.B.(Athens), LL.M. (London)
Greek Law Practice
John Tripidakis & Associates
For all your legal matters, ranging from Greek Passport, Inheritances, Estates and Real Estate in Greece:
Email: [email protected]
Website: www.greeklawyersonline.gr

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Requirements and Process for Obtaining a Greek Passport 4

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Russia closes CBC Moscow bureau in retaliation for Canada’s ban on Russian state TV

Russia has decided to close the Moscow bureau of CBC/Radio-Canada and deprive its journalists of their visas and accreditation, saying it is retaliating after Canada banned Russian state TV RT.

Speaking to reporters in Moscow on Wednesday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova accused Canada and other countries of “open attacks on Russian media.”

“A decision was made to impose retaliatory measures against Canada’s actions: the closure of the Moscow office of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, including the cancellation of accreditations and visas of their journalists,” Zakharova said. in Russian, his remarks translated by Reuters.

The Russian Embassy in Ottawa confirmed the development.

The move comes after Canada’s telecommunications regulator announced on March 16 that it was removing RT and RT France, the stations formerly known as Russia Today, from the list of programming services and stations not which are authorized for distribution in Canada.

Why Russia waited two months to announce its decision was unclear.

Zakharova also accused Ottawa of “anti-Russian policy”. “Essentially,” she said, “CBC has become a mouthpiece for propaganda that distributes false and questionable material regarding our country.”

Radio-Canada “deeply disappointed”

CBC News editor-in-chief Brodie Fenlon said Russia’s decision was “very disappointing”.

“CBC News and its reporters are completely and entirely independent of any government or agency, so we have nothing to do with these [regulatory] the decisions. We were there to report what is happening in Russia – in fact, [and] precisely,” Fenlon said in an interview.

Correspondent Briar Stewart is pictured on the roof of CBC’s office in Moscow on October 5, 2021. (Radio Canada)

“Obviously we know that the freedom of the media and the press in Russia has been seriously curtailed. I guess we are the latest proof of that.”

CBC/Radio-Canada had had a bureau in Moscow for over 44 years and was the only Canadian news organization with a permanent presence in the country. His office had nine employees, including editorial and administrative staff, some of whom were locally hired Russians.

It was believed that this was the first time that a foreign government had forced the closure of a Radio-Canada office.

Fenlon said CBC would continue to cover Russia from outside the country.

Federal government criticizes Russia’s decision

Speaking to reporters in Ottawa, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called Russia’s decision “unfortunate but not surprising.”

“Truth, responsible journalism, sharing what is really happening with citizens is a deep threat to Vladimir Putin and his illegal war of authoritarian tendencies,” Trudeau told reporters.

“Canada will always stand for a free and strong independent press that does its job, challenges and reveals what is happening in the world.”

Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez contrasted the decision by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to remove RT from the Canadian airwaves and Russia’s decision to close the CBC office in Moscow.

“It’s a totally independent decision from the CRTC… I asked the CRTC to do an investigation, to consult Canadians, which they did for two weeks. They met with hundreds of people and they made a very detailed decision, a decision of 7,000 This is what is happening in Canada. In Russia, just like that, they expel a journalist. Major difference,” Rodriguez told reporters on Parliament Hill.

WATCH | The Minister of Heritage reacts to the announcement of Russia’s closure of the CBC office in Moscow:

Heritage Minister reacts to news of Russia closing CBC Moscow bureau

Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez says he is grateful to Canadian journalists for their hard work and says Russian President Vladimir Putin took the step to hide “the horrible reality that is happening in Ukraine”.

The penalties continue

Last month, Russia announced sanctions against 61 Canadians, including CBC President Catherine Tait and several journalists from other outlets.

Canada introduced a bill in the Senate on Tuesday barring Russian President Vladimir Putin and about 1,000 members of his government and military from entering the country, as it continues to increase sanctions against the February 24 Russian invasion of Ukraine.

In March, Putin signed a law imposing a prison term of up to 15 years for intentionally spreading “false” information about the military, prompting some Western media outlets to withdraw their journalists from Russia.

Russian officials do not use the word “invasion” and say Western media have provided a biased account of the war in Ukraine that ignores Russian concerns about NATO expansion and alleged persecution of Russian speakers.

The CBC Moscow News Office, pictured in March 2020, is in the historic building on Kotelnicheskaya Embankment on the banks of the Moscow River. (Radio Canada)

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has repeatedly chastised the West for what he calls an undemocratic crackdown on Russian state media which he said offered an alternative to Western narratives.

Putin presents war as an inevitable confrontation with the United States, which he accuses of threatening Russia by interfering in its backyard and expanding the North Atlantic Treaty Organization military alliance.

Ukraine says it is fighting land grabbing the imperial way and that Putin’s claims about genocide and persecution of Russian speakers are nonsense.

Trumpet, NGO Leaders Host Media Forum Tomorrow in Abuja | The Guardian Nigeria News

Political leaders and media professionals are gathering in Abuja tomorrow to reflect on pressing national and other issues.

Tagged “Leaders-Media Forum for National Development”, the forum held at the National Merit House, is organized by a non-governmental organization (NGO), Good Circle International Organization, in partnership with The Trumpet Newspapers.

The theme is “Promoting Citizen Unity and Economic Empowerment for Sustainable National Development”.

Editor of The Trumpet, Omokioja JJK Eto, said: “There is no better time to organize this event, as there is a need for leaders and the media, as well as the public, to interact and provide insights. sustainable solutions to the challenges facing our society.

GCIO International President, Esanerovo Agbodo, in a statement, said, “The forum is intended to shed light on issues relating to the unity and empowerment of Nigerians for building a manly nation. The forum is deliberately formulated to bring together leaders of different political parties under one roof to promote unity among Nigerians regardless of their political affiliations. All Nigerian citizens are united in their quest for good governance and economic empowerment. So what we need in Nigeria is good governance and Nigerians under any political party who have what it takes to govern the country effectively.

Leaders expected at the forum as speakers include former Vice President Atiku Abubakar; Senator Rochas Okorocha; Governors Yayaya Bello and Nyesom Wike of Kogi and Rivers States.

The 2019 All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) presidential candidate, Major General John Gbor (rtd), is the chair of the event.

Suspect charged in fatal shooting at California church | State and Region


SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — Prosecutors have charged the suspect in the California church shooting with one count of first-degree murder and five counts of attempted murder.

Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer also announced on Tuesday that David Chou, 68, of Las Vegas faces an upgrade for “waiting,” as well as four counts of possession of a drug. destructive devices intended to kill or injure. The arraignment is expected later Tuesday.

“We usually think of the person hiding in the bushes,” Spitzer said. “This case is about the person hiding in plain sight.”

If convicted of the charges against him and a jury finds the enhancements to be true, Chou faces life in prison without the possibility of parole or the death penalty, Spitzer said.

“Although there is currently very strong evidence that this was motivated by hate, we want to make sure that we have gathered all the evidence that supports this theory in the case,” Spitzer said, when asked. whether he would file a hate complaint. criminality.

Chou is accused of opening fire at a Sunday lunch for members of the Taiwanese Presbyterian Church of Irvine, which worships at the Geneva Presbyterian Church in the community of Laguna Woods.

Chou traveled to Orange County on Saturday and attended lunch the next day. Although he didn’t know anyone there, he spent about an hour mingling with about 40 attendees and then carried out his plot, authorities said at a news conference.

He chained the doors and put super glue in the keyholes, authorities said. He had two 9mm handguns – bought legally years ago in Las Vegas – and three bags, containing among other things four Molotov cocktail-type incendiary devices and additional ammunition. He opened fire and in the ensuing chaos Dr. John Cheng, 52, tackled him, allowing other parishioners to subdue him and tie him up with extension cords, authorities said.

Cheng died and five people were injured, including an 86-year-old woman and four men, ages 66, 75, 82 and 92, the sheriff’s department said. Authorities said Monday that two of the injured were in good condition, two were in stable condition and the status of the fifth patient was undetermined.

Sheriff Don Barnes called Cheng’s heroism a “combination of good versus evil” that likely saved the lives “of more than dozens of people”.

Investigators are trying to determine if the church in Laguna Woods, a scenic coastal area populated primarily by retirees and near a large gated community, was a random target, Spitzer said.

“This general population created a vulnerable environment for them to achieve what I believe was their ultimate goal, which was to execute as many people in this room in cold blood as possible,” he said.

Barnes called Chou an immigrant from China, but Taiwan’s Central News Agency said it interviewed Louis M. Huang, general manager of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Los Angeles, and he confirmed that Chou was born in Taiwan in 1953.

Barnes said Chou’s hatred of Taiwan was documented in handwritten notes found by authorities. Chou’s family was apparently among many forcibly deported from mainland China to Taiwan shortly after 1948, Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer said.

Tensions between China and Taiwan are at their highest in decades, with Beijing stepping up its military harassment by flying fighter jets to the self-governing island. China has not ruled out the force to reunite with Taiwan, which broke away from the mainland in a civil war in 1949.

Chou had ties to an organization opposed to Taiwan independence from China, according to Taiwanese media.

Relations between mainlanders forced to flee a communist takeover and ethnic Taiwanese were often strained as newcomers crowded into slums and military communities. Separated by language and lifestyle, bullying and confrontations were common as President Chiang Kai-shek severely curtailed civil liberties under nearly four decades of martial law.

The Presbyterian Church is the largest of the Christian denominations in Taiwan and has been closely identified with the pro-democracy movement during the martial law era and later with the cause of Taiwan independence.

Barnes said Chou acted alone and was “not meant to be associated with any specific church or religion, and there is no direct connection to the church or any member of the church to Our knowledge”.

Taiwan’s Chief Representative to the United States, Bi-khim Hsiao, offered his condolences on Twitter.

“I join the families of the victims and the grieving Taiwanese American communities and pray for the speedy recovery of the injured survivors,” Hsiao wrote on Sunday.

Chinese embassy spokesman Liu Pengyu told the AP by email that the Chinese government has “constantly condemned incidents of violence. We express our condolences to the victims and our sincere condolences to the bereaved families and the injured.

Jerry Chen, a longtime member of the church, said a group of about 40 congregants gathered in the communion hall for lunch after a morning service to welcome their former pastor Billy Chang, a beloved and respected community member who had served the church for 20 years. Chang returned to Taiwan two years ago. It was his first time returning to the United States, Chen said.

Everyone had just finished lunch and were taking pictures with Chang when Chen walked into the kitchen. It was then that he heard the gunshots.

Barnes said Cheng, a sports medicine doctor who is survived by a wife and two children, blamed the shooter and tried to disarm him, allowing others to intervene. Chang hit the shooter in the head with a chair before other parishioners overpowered him.

Balmore Orellana, a former neighbor, said Chou’s life fell apart after his wife left him last year. Spitzer said the suspect’s wife was terminally ill and in Taiwan. He couldn’t tell if she was alive or dead.

Before, Chou was a nice guy who owned the Las Vegas apartment building where he lived until he was evicted in February, Orellana told The Associated Press.

Records show the four-unit property sold last October for just over $500,000. Orellana said Chou’s wife used the money from the sale to move to Taiwan.

Before Orellana moved in about five years ago, Chou suffered a head injury and other serious injuries in an attack by a tenant, the neighbor said. More recently his sanity has declined and last summer a gun was fired inside Chou’s apartment and the bullet entered Orellana’s apartment, although no one had been injured, Orellana said.

The shooting came a day after an 18-year-old man shot and killed 10 people in Buffalo, New York, in a racist rampage where the white shooter allegedly targeted a supermarket in a predominantly black neighborhood.

Associated Press reporters John Antczak in Los Angeles, Ken Ritter in Las Vegas and Ellen Knickmeyer in Washington contributed to this story. News researcher Rhonda Shafner contributed from New York.

Associated Press religious coverage receives support through the AP’s collaboration with The Conversation US, with funding from Lilly Endowment Inc. The AP is solely responsible for this content.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

The United States in Jeddah: 80 Years of Common History and Strong Partnership

The United States in Jeddah: 80 Years of Common History and Strong Partnership

JEDDAH — This year, the United States of America celebrates the 80th anniversary of its diplomatic presence in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This step marks the opening of the first American diplomatic mission in the Kingdom, on May 1, 1942, in Jeddah. Since then, the relationship between the two countries and our two peoples has grown to encompass a multitude of areas, including business, security, education, science, culture, tourism and sports.

On May 1, 1942, the United States opened its first legation (a historic term for a diplomatic representative office) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, in Jeddah, with James S. Moose as charge d’affaires. Three years later, on February 14, 1945, US President Franklin D. Roosevelt and King Abdulaziz Al Saud launched the US-Saudi strategic partnership during their historic meeting aboard the USS Quincy.

Shortly after opening, the American Legation took up residence in the historic Batterjee House in al-Balad, where it remained until 1953, when it moved to the new United States Embassy on Falasteen Street. In 1984, as part of a general relocation of foreign missions, the Embassy moved to Riyadh and the Falasteen Street compound was reborn as the United States Consulate General in Jeddah. It continued to serve the people of the western region of the Kingdom until the move in 2019 to the new consulate complex in Muhammadiyah district in northern Jeddah.

Throughout eight decades of close partnership and friendship, the United States and Saudi Arabia have shared a common vision. Early on, countries joined forces against global and regional threats. On June 18, 1951, the two countries established their first formal defense partnership: the Mutual Defense Assistance Agreement. As the relationship grew, the United States and the Kingdom partnered to address other challenges through education and exchange programs, the perfect bridge between our peoples. At the same time, the business partnership has blossomed, with Saudi and American companies joining forces in various sectors, including infrastructure development, energy, logistics, transport, health and tourism.

Even when the US Embassy moved to Riyadh, the US Consulate in Jeddah continued to play a key role in strengthening and deepening ties. Over the years, American companies have established operations in the western region and launched numerous joint ventures with Saudi partners. Tens of thousands of Saudi students from across the region have studied at American universities and returned to help build the Kingdom. Thousands of American citizens came to perform Hajj and Umrah pilgrimages. Many Americans live and work in the region, from Tabuk to Jizan.

As Saudi Arabia strives to achieve the social and economic transformation outlined in Vision 2030, the U.S. Consulate in Jeddah will draw on our shared history to facilitate legitimate travel to the United States, provide services to U.S. citizens in western region and facilitate innovative partnerships. that support the growing and dynamic relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia.

Presidential candidacy: Amaechi leaves his post as Minister of Transport

Rotimi Amaechi resigned as Minister of Transport.

The development was confirmed by a ministry insider on Monday.

According to the source, the minister resigned following President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive on appointees interested in running for the 2023 elections.

The president had, on May 11, ordered all candidates for elective office to resign by May 16 at the latest.

On May 13, when Buhari held a farewell session for ministers seeking elective posts, there was no development on whether Amaechi had tendered his resignation.

Speaking after the farewell session, Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information, told state House correspondents that 10 members of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) had expressed interest in standing in the general elections.

On whether all the ministers had tendered their resignation at the time, Mohammed said “some have done it and others are doing it”.

The Minister of Information had also quoted the President as saying that “the vacancies will be filled very soon without delay”.

Amaechi joins the likes of Ogbonnaya Onu and Godswill Akpabio who also resigned as ministers to run for president in the 2023 elections.

Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba resigned as Minister of State for Education in April to run for the presidency.

Meanwhile, Chris Ngige, Minister for Labor and Employment, and Pauline Tallen, Minister for Women’s Affairs, have withdrawn their resignations.

While Ngige withdrew from the presidential race, Tallen withdrew from representing the Southern Plateau Senatorial District in the National Assembly.

APO Group and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) Win Prestigious Public Relations Award for Coordinating African Journalism Competition

APO Group (www.APO-opa.com), the leading pan-African communications consultancy and press release distribution service, is delighted to announce that it has won a prestigious PRovoke Africa SABER Award for its campaign with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) (www.IOM.int) to reward ethical and responsible reporting on migration in Africa.

The SABER award recognizes APO Group and IOM’s commitment to improving global perceptions of migration issues in Africa. In tandem, the two organizations coordinated a journalism competition that drew submissions from across the continent, with eight winning journalists receiving their prizes at a virtual press event that also included a discussion on the challenges of reporting on migration. .

The PRovoke Africa SABER Awards are the leading public relations awards in Africa. Held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, the 2022 SABER Awards attracted over 2,000 entries from PR agencies across the continent. A jury of industry leaders chaired by PRovoke Media founder Paul Holmes was looking for campaigns that were brave, authentic, shareable and captivating – and Project Migration won APO Group and IOM the SABER award in the category “Associations”.

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) is part of the United Nations system and is the primary intergovernmental organization promoting humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all. IOM was established in 1951 and is present in over 100 countries.

The IOM Regional Office for West and Central Africa commissioned APO Group to launch a competition for African journalists reporting on migration.

The competition (https://bit.ly/3NiMzra) was designed to recognize outstanding stories from the region that shed light on migration from a variety of perspectives, including safe migration, climate change and the reintegration of returning migrants.

Debunking false and discriminatory narratives about migration in Africa was of particular importance to APO Group and IOM. The competition asked journalists to submit stories that demonstrated balanced, evidence-based reporting and gave the public a clearer picture of the real issues.

With an unrivaled reputation for media relations in Africa and a wide reach in all 54 African countries, the APO Group project team was able to promote the competition to journalists across the continent. But with the logistical challenges caused by the pandemic, they had to adopt a purely virtual campaign, with the submission process, press events and assembly of four thematic juries all coordinated online.

Despite this, campaign results were exceptional, with 230 quality submissions received in English and French, total PR value generated of over $19 million, and the virtual awards ceremony broadcast live on Facebook and YouTube.

“When we launched this campaign, it was essential that we had a partner who understood African media and had deep contacts to attract submissions across West and Central Africa,” said Mia Barrett, manager. sensitization at the IOM regional office for West and Central Africa. Central Africa. “We are thrilled with this SABER award as it demonstrates the importance of our mission to change the narrative on migration in Africa.”

“APO Group has always stood for fair and balanced reporting, so it is fantastic that we are able to give greater prominence to compelling African stories that provide real insight into migration. We are extremely grateful to IOM for the opportunity to participate in this campaign, and share its determination to reward ethical journalism and shine a light on what is an important issue,” said APO Group Founder and Chairman , Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of APO Group.

Media contact:
[email protected]

About the International Organization for Migration:
Established in 1951, IOM is the leading intergovernmental organization in the field of migration and works closely with governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental partners. With 173 member states, 8 other states with observer status and offices in over 100 countries, IOM is dedicated to promoting humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all. It does this by providing services and advice to governments and migrants. IOM works to help ensure the orderly and humane management of migration in order to promote international cooperation on migration issues, assist in the search for practical solutions to migration problems and provide humanitarian assistance to migrants in need, including refugees and internally displaced persons. The IOM Constitution recognizes the link between migration and economic, social and cultural development, as well as the right to freedom of movement. IOM’s activities that cut across these areas include the promotion of international migration law, policy debate and guidance, the protection of migrants’ rights, migrant health and the gender dimension of migration. Learn more at https://rodakar.iom.int/

About APO Group:
Founded in 2007, APO Group (www.APO-opa.com) is the pan-African leader in communications consulting and press release distribution. We help private and public organizations to build their reputation and increase their brand image in target countries across Africa. Our role as a trusted partner is to leverage the power of media and build tailored strategies that enable organizations to deliver real and measurable impact in Africa and beyond. The trust and recognition given to APO Group by global and multinational companies, governments and NGOs drives us to continuously improve our value proposition in Africa to better meet the needs of our customers. Among our prestigious clients: Facebook, Dangote Group, Nestlé, GE, NBA, Canon, Coca-Cola, DHL, Marriott Group, Ecobank, Siemens, Standard Chartered, Orange, Jack Ma Foundation, African Development Bank, World Health Organization , Islamic Development Bank, Liquid Intelligent Technologies, Rotary International, Kaspersky, Greenpeace…

Headquarters: Lausanne, Switzerland | Offices in Senegal, Dubai and Hong Kong

APO Group and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) Win Prestigious Public Relations Award for Coordinating African Journalism Competition

Ukraine counterattacks Russian forces in the east


RUSKA LOZOVA, Ukraine (Reuters) – Russia attacked positions in eastern Ukraine as it tried to encircle Ukrainian forces in the Donbass and repel a counteroffensive around the town of Izium .

FILE PHOTO: A local resident rides a bicycle past a charred armored vehicle during the Ukraine-Russia conflict in the separatist-controlled town of Volnovakha in Donetsk region, Ukraine March 15, 2022. REUTERS/Alexander Ermoshenko/File Photo

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said the Russian offensive in Donbass had stalled and Ukraine could win the war, an outcome few military analysts had predicted at the start of the conflict.

“Russia’s war in Ukraine is not going the way Moscow planned,” Stoltenberg told reporters on Sunday.

In a strategic blow to Russia, which has long opposed NATO enlargement, Finland confirmed on Sunday that it would apply to join the Atlantic military alliance.

Sweden’s ruling Social Democrats also backed NATO membership on Sunday, paving the way for a bid and abandoning decades of military non-alignment.

NATO and the United States have said they are confident that the two countries will be accepted into the alliance and that the reservations of Turkey, which wants the Nordic countries to stop supporting Kurdish militant groups present on their territory. , could be waived.

Ukraine has won a string of successes since invading Russia on February 24, reversing an advance on the capital kyiv and driving Russian forces from Kharkiv to the east.

Since mid-April, Russian forces have focused much of their firepower on capturing two eastern provinces known as Donbass.

Moscow recognized the independence of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic and the Lugansk People’s Republic in the Donbass days before launching its invasion of Ukraine.

Britain’s military intelligence said Russia had lost around a third of the ground combat force deployed in February and its offensive in Donbass was “significantly behind schedule”.

In addition to losing a large number of men and a lot of military equipment, Russia was hit by economic sanctions, while Western states provided military aid to Ukraine.

Ukraine has deployed many of its new US M-777 howitzers to the front lines, and Washington has delivered all but one of the 90 artillery pieces they were supposed to send, the US Embassy said in kyiv.

US lawmakers are expected to continue efforts to send more aid this week.

Moscow calls its invasion of Ukraine a “special military operation” to rid the country of fascists, a claim by kyiv and its Western opinion that is a baseless pretext for unprovoked war.


Ukrainian troops received a morale boost following the country’s victory in the Eurovision Song Contest over the weekend, with some saying it was a sign of battlefield victories to come.

“We have shown that we can not only fight, but we can also sing very well,” said Vitaliy, a soldier housed north of Kyiv.

The heaviest fighting appears to have taken place around the eastern Russian-held city of Izium, where Russia said it hit Ukrainian positions with missiles.

Ukraine’s joint forces task force said its troops repelled 17 attacks on Sunday and destroyed 11 pieces of Russian equipment. The Ukrainian Air Force command said Ukrainian forces shot down two helicopters, two cruise missiles and seven drones. .

Russia continued to target civilian areas along the entire frontline in the Luhansk and Donetsk regions, firing on 23 villages and towns, the task force added.

Reuters was unable to independently confirm the information. Russia denies targeting civilians.

If Ukraine can keep pressure on Izium and Russian supply lines, it will be more difficult for Moscow to surround Ukrainian troops in Donbass.

The Ukrainian military has also acknowledged setbacks, saying Russian forces “continue to advance” in several areas of the Donbass region.

In western Ukraine, near Poland, missiles destroyed military infrastructure overnight Saturday and were fired at the Lviv region from the Black Sea, Ukrainian officials said.

Ten other civilians were injured in the southern region of Mykolaiv, the regional council said, without providing details.

There was also no respite on Sunday in Russia’s bombardment of steelworks in the southern port of Mariupol, where a few hundred Ukrainian fighters are resisting weeks after the town fell to Russian hands, the report said. Ukrainian army.

Brightly burning ordnance was shown cascading down steel mills in a video posted by a pro-Russian separatist commander.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said “very difficult and delicate negotiations” were underway to save Ukrainians in Mariupol and Azovstal.

In the port city, some residents ate and talked outside their burnt building, which was bombed and caught fire in early April.

“I was in the kitchen when the smoke appeared,” said a resident named Natalya. “I started carrying my stuff, saving what I could.”

She said three neighbors died in the fighting.

“We couldn’t bury them because of the shelling. Every day we put a person in a grave, but we couldn’t cover it with earth because of the shelling.

Reports from Reuters offices; Written by Susan Heavey and Stephen Coates; Edition by Lincoln Feast.

Mexico will issue gender-neutral identity documents in the United States and Canada


Consular ID cards will allow Mexicans to refuse to reveal their gender from June 1; other changes include the addition of Indigenous language services

EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) — The government of Mexico plans to issue gender-neutral identity documents to Mexicans living in the United States and Canada. It also plans to hire speakers of five indigenous languages ​​to help those who have immigrated to the United States from communities where Nahuatl, Zapotec, Maya, Otomi and Mixtec are spoken.

The new consular ID card and an expanded phone line for language services will be available June 1, said Jaime Vazquez Bracho Torres, Mexico’s director of consular services.

“This new ID has several new security features – such as a polycarbonate material, similar to our new ePassport, which we recently launched – as well as new inclusivity features, including an ‘X’ in the case of people who identify as gender non-conforming or non-binary,” said Vazquez Bracho.

Speaking at the Mexican consulate in El Paso on Saturday, Vazquez Bracho said Mexico was producing more modern and secure identity documents for its citizens abroad so that foreign governments would not hesitate to accept them. He said states like California and New Mexico already accept the Mexican Consulate ID card, also known ass consular numberas proof of identity when issuing state driver’s licenses.

The back of a new non-binary Mexican consular ID card. (Government of Mexico)

The new electronic passport and the future new consular identity card hide computer chips, holograms and biometric information on the bearer. This makes it possible to accommodate transgender people without worrying about safety. “It is part of an effort to modernize and fight discrimination also through our consular network,” Vazquez Bracho said.

Last March, the US State Department announced that it would give passport applicants the option of selecting “X” instead of “M” (male) or F (female) in their passport applications. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said the same option would apply to other forms of documentation in 2023.

As for the expanded line of language services, government officials and immigration advocates stress the need to serve migrants at the border who speak neither English nor Spanish. Mexico’s 2020 census concluded that up to 6.2% of that country’s 126 million people speak an indigenous language, of which 865,972 speak no Spanish at all.

The consulate in El Paso sees an average of 950 people a week seeking identity documents, protection or other services, Consul General Mauricio Ibarra said.

The matricula is a popular document that has been used for several years by Mexican immigrants who do not have U.S. documents to open bank accounts, contract utilities and identify themselves to local authorities, he said.

The wallet-sized card also allows US residents to prove their Mexican nationality and travel smoothly whenever they visit their home country, he added.

Information for obtaining these documents can be obtained by calling (424)-309-0009 or visiting citas.sre.gob.mx.

The country has constraints on the availability of domestic coal, according to the government

The country faces constraints on domestic coal availability and the rest of the dry fuel demand has to be met by imports, according to the coal ministry.

The ministry also pointed out that coal block holders – both captive and commercial – have a major role to play in alleviating the coal shortage situation. National coal production is around 800 million tonnes, according to the additional coal secretary, who is also chairman of an interdepartmental group on coal linkages for the electricity sector.

The interdepartmental group met recently to review requests for coal links with central/state sector power plants and to review the status of existing coal links.

The additional coal secretary said that “there are constraints in the national availability of coal and the national coal production is approximately 800 MT”.

“Therefore, the rest of the country’s coal demand must be met by imports from other countries,” according to the minutes of the meeting on energy links.

Coal Secretary AK Jain had previously attributed the low coal inventories at power stations to several factors such as increased demand for electricity due to the post-COVID-19 boom in the economy, the early arrival of in the summer, a rise in the price of gas and imported coal and a sharp drop in electricity production by coastal thermal power stations.

He added that a series of measures were already underway to improve the country’s total power supply.

Gas-based electricity production which has dropped drastically in the country has aggravated the crisis.

Coastal thermal power plants are now producing around half of their capacity due to the sharp rise in the price of imported coal. This results in a gap between demand and supply of electricity.

The secretary further said that the states in the south and west are dependent on imported coal. And when domestic coal is shipped by railcars/rakes to the national coal-fired power plants in these states to compensate for the loss of production of imported coal, the turnaround time for the rakes is over 10 days, which creates problems of availability of rakes for other plants. .

(Only the title and image of this report may have been edited by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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No more irregular migration in Edo – Shaibu

Irregular migration and human trafficking will no longer exist in Edo, observed Deputy State Governor Philip Shaibu.

He said the feat could be attributed to the long-term initiatives put in place to deal with the threat.

Shaibu spoke on Saturday in Benin at the opening ceremony of the International Organization for Migration (IOM)-Laliga-Nigerian Women Football League (NWFL) football tournament in Benin.

He noted that the state has continued to work with stakeholders, including IOM, to strengthen girls’ education in the state.

He said the state government must protect the girl child through the domestication of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act.

Shaibu commended IOM and the state governor’s wife, Ms. Betsy Obaseki, for championing the fight against irregular migration in the state.

He also said that the sporting event comes at the right time when the state government is redefining the management of sports in the state.

“We bring the potential of the girl child and for her to have that confidence to know that God created her and planted something in her.

“Every woman has a natural gift as a mother and in the management business.

“As for sports, it’s awake today, Edo has been on vacation for decades when it comes to sports. But today, Edo is back and his heart is beating,” Shaibu said.

Earlier, Besty Obaseki said that the state government is concerned about the welfare of girls in the state.

She promised that awareness-raising initiatives against the scourge of irregular migration would be sustained beyond the current administration.

Earlier, IOM Outreach Officer Cyprine Cheptepkeny said the essence of the football tournament was to enlighten would-be migrants on the dangers of irregular migration.

Cheptepkeny said the state also intends to use sport as a unifier due to the stigma faced by most returnees.

“We are partnering with the Edo government in this IOM-NWFL football tournament to raise awareness of human trafficking issues and also promote safe migration.

“We are teaming up to educate young people in the state on good value as Edo has the highest number of returning migrants.

“We have carried out interventions that have had a positive impact on the lives of returnees.

“With the establishment of a community-based pineapple factory that is currently run by returnees and fish farms in Edo communities, the zeal to engage in irregular migration will die out,” said- she declared.

Cheptepkeny also noted that the government has provided mental health support services and shelter to returning migrants to integrate them into society.


Latest Trending Visitor Management Tool – SMU Daily Mustang


A new market study from Marketreports.info, the Global Visitor Management Tools Market, is expected to experience tremendous growth in the coming years. Analysts also analyzed ongoing trends in Visitor management tool and growth opportunities in industries. These shareholders include the following manufacturers of outdoor advertising: Envoy, Veristream, Proxyclick, Traction Guest, SwipedOn, iLobby, Sine, ALICE Receptionist, KeepnTrack, Vizito, Greetly, HID Global, Tyco Security, Honeywell Access Control, Chubb Fire & Security, Quantum Automation, Raptor Technologies, ATT Systems, Embassy IT Solutions, Hashmicro, Octopus Systems, RIW Software Technology. The world Visitor management tool The market research report provides a picture of the competitive landscape of the international market. The report conveys the details resulting from the analysis of the targeted market. Initially, the Visitor management tool The market report shares key aspects of the industry with impact details and Visitor management tool industry experts maintain consistent investigation with innovative trends, market share, and cost.

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Primary sources are primarily industry experts in core and related industries and manufacturers involved in all sectors of the industry supply chain. The bottom-up approach is used to plan the market size of Visitor management tool based on end-user industry and region in terms of value/volume. With the help of data, we support the primary market through the three-dimensional survey procedure and the first expert telephone interview and data verification, determine the individual market share and size, and confirm with this study.

Top Companies Covered in the Report: Envoy, Veristream, Proxyclick, Traction Guest, SwipedOn, iLobby, Sine, ALICE Receptionist, KeepnTrack, Vizito, Greetly, HID Global, Tyco Security, Honeywell Access Control, Chubb Fire & Security, Quantum Automation, Raptor Technologies, ATT Systems, Embassy IT Solutions, Hashmicro, Octopus Systems, RIW Software Technology

Segment by TypeWeb-BasedCloud-BasedSegment by ApplicationSchoolBusiness/Commercial BuildingHospitalHotelCommunityOther

Regional analysis:
• North America
• Europe
• Asia Pacific
• Latin America
• Middle East and Africa

Key search:
The main sources are industry experts Visitor management tool industry, including management organizations, processing organizations and analytical service providers that deal with the value chain of industry organizations. We interviewed all major sources to collect and certify qualitative and quantitative information and to determine future prospects. The qualities of this study in the industry of industry experts, such as CEO, Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Technology and Innovation Officer, Founder and key leaders of key companies and institutions in the major biomass waste containers across the world in extensive primary research conducted for this study We interviewed to acquire and verify both sides and quantitative aspects.

The research provides answers to the following key questions:
1) Who are the main competitors in the visitor management tools market?
Here is the list of players: Envoy, Veristream, Proxyclick, Traction Guest, SwipedOn, iLobby, Sine, ALICE Receptionist, KeepnTrack, Vizito, Greetly, HID Global, Tyco Security, Honeywell Access Control, Chubb Fire & Security, Quantum Automation, Raptor Technologies , ATT Systems, Embassy IT Solutions, Hashmicro, Octopus Systems, RIW Software Technology

2) What is the expected market size and growth rate of the Outdoor Advertising market for the period 2022-2030?
** Values ​​marked with an XX are confidential data. To learn more about CAGR figures, fill in your information so our industry experts can contact you.

3) What are the top key regions covered in the Visitor Management Tool reports?
Geographically, this report is segmented into several key Regions, consumption, revenue (Million USD), market share and growth rate of Visitor Management Tool in these regions, from 2022 to 2030 (forecast), covering North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, MEA and Rest of the World.

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Global Visitor management tool Market Research Report 2022-2030, by Manufacturers, Regions, Types and Applications

1 Coverage of the study
1.1 Visitor Management Tool Product
1.2 Key Market Segments in this Study
1.3 Key Manufacturers Covered
1.4 Visitor Management Tools Market by Type
1.5 Visitor Management Tools Market by Application
1.6 Objectives of the study
1.7 years considered

2 Executive Summary
2.1 Global Visitor Management Tools Production
2.2 Visitor Management Tools Growth Rate (CAGR) 2022-2030
2.3 Competitive Landscape Analysis
2.4 Market Drivers, Trends and Issues

3 Visitor Management Tools Market Size by Manufacturers
3.1 Visitor Management Tools Production by Manufacturers
3.2 Visitor Management Tools Revenue by Manufacturers
3.3 Visitor Management Tools Price by Manufacturers
3.4 Mergers and acquisitions, expansion plans

4 Visitor Management Tools Production by Regions
4.1 Global Visitor Management Tools Production by Regions
4.2 United States
4.3 Europe
4.4 China
4.5 Japan
4.6 Rest of the world

5 Visitor Management Tools Consumption by Regions
5.1 Global Visitor Management Tools Consumption by Regions
5.2 North America
5.2 Mexico
5.3 Europe
5.4 Asia-Pacific
5.5 Central and South America
5.6 Middle East and Africa

6 Market Size by Type
6.1 Global Visitor Management Tool Breakdown Data by Type
6.2 Global Visitor Management Tools Revenue by Type
6.3 Visitor Management Tool Price by Type

7 Visitor Management Tools Market Size by Application
7.1 Overview
7.2 Global Visitor Management Tools Breakdown Dada by Application

8 manufacturer profiles

9 Production Forecast
9.1 Visitor Management Tool Production and Revenue Forecast
9.2 Visitor Management Tool Production and Revenue Forecast by Regions
9.3 Key Producers Forecast of Visitor Management Tool

9.4 Forecast by Type

10 Consumption forecast
10.1 Consumption Forecast by Application
10.2 Visitor Management Tool Consumption Forecast by Regions
10.3 North America Market Consumption Forecast
10.4 Europe Market Consumption Forecast
10.5 Asia Pacific Market Consumption Forecast
10.6 Central & South America Market Consumption Forecast
10.7 Middle East & Africa Market Consumption Forecast

11 Upstream, Industry Chain and Downstream Customers Analysis
11.1 Upstream Market Analysis of Visitor Management Tool
11.2 Industry Chain Analysis of Visitor Management Tools
11.3 Marketing and distribution
11.4 Visitor Management Tools Distributors
11.5 Visitor Management Tool Customers

12 opportunities and challenges, threats and factors affecting
12.1 Market Opportunities
12.2 Market Challenges
12.3 Porter’s Five Forces Analysis

13 key findings

14 Appendix
14.1 Research methodology
14.2 Author details
14.3 Disclaimer

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Note: Regional breakdown and purchase by section available. We provide the best Pie chat customization reports as per specific requirements.

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Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco records highest turnout yet in 2022 polls


MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco, which covers 10 states in America, recorded its highest turnout yet as 19,680 Filipino-Americans cast their ballots in this year’s elections.

“This is a record turnout. This is the highest turnout ever for the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco since overseas voting began in 2004, and that turnout represents 41 .15% of our registered voters abroad,” Consul General Neil Frank Ferrer said in a statement. interview with TFC News aired Saturday.

He explained that the high voter turnout shows what he called the overwhelming desire of the Filipino-American community to do their patriotic duty and help shape the country’s future.

There are more than 47,800 registered foreign voters in the states covered by the Consulate General of the Philippines in San Francisco. The consulate has consular jurisdiction over Alaska, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, northern California, northern Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington State and Wyoming.

Back home, the Election Commission said a day after the elections that there were more overseas Filipinos who voted in the May 9 elections compared to the 2016 presidential elections.

Comelec commissioner Marlon Casquejo previously said he recorded an overseas turnout of 34.14%, higher than the turnout of around 32% in 2016, as of May 10, but added that he expects that number to rise.

About 1.7 million Filipinos registered overseas were allowed to vote as of last month.

Pollster estimates show that 550,000 overseas Filipinos, or 33%, voted in this year’s elections, but the numbers may rise further as the solicitation of votes is still ongoing.

Foreign Office employee loses compensation case


A Foreign Office clerk who sued the state for $167,000 in financial losses after her job was realigned will now have to pay the costs because she lost her claim.

Theresa Hope had complained that she lost gratuities, 75 days annual leave and bargaining opportunities when her job was changed.

In an oral decision after a short virtual trial on Friday, Judge Frank Seepersad denied Hope’s claim, accepting the state’s assertion that she was not entitled to the gratuity or any of the benefits she was seeking. .

She testified at trial.

Hope previously worked as a pension and leave preparation officer at the department on two three-year contracts from 2008. In 2013, she was placed on a month-to-month contract while the department awaited Cabinet approval to standardize positions. .

Once approved, Hope was offered the position of Business Operations Assistant I for three years with the same salary of $6,800. It was in 2016.

Hope declined the offer as it was an entry-level position and not in line with his years of service and experience. She continued to work in the post from month to month.

Seepersad said it was clear that the duties Hope performed were clerical and administrative and fell within the Department of Personnel’s policy intent, identified in a 2013 circular memorandum, to realign civil service positions.

The judge said that decision was up to the director of personnel, as the ministry had no authority to offer contracts with gratuities.

He said it was well within the executive’s remit to adopt a policy to move away from hiring large numbers of people on a permanent basis by offering contract jobs, and that should be understood and appreciated.

“It is part of the administrative authority exercised by the executive. Individual contract holders should understand that the contracts are not specific to them.

He said the evidence showed that the post of Pension and Leave Preparation Officer had been phased out after the 2013 memorandum and that the post had been standardized, with the post of Business Operations Officer being the new name.

“The court can see the rationale for this action to create uniformity of positions in various departments to address the unique nuances in the respective departments,” he said, finding Hope’s claim to be without merit.

She was represented by attorney Nigel Floyd. Attorneys Zara Smith and Nadine Nabbie represented the Attorney General.