Category Archives: Politics

‘Proud’ women win seats in historic Saudi vote



RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AFP) – At least nine women won municipal council seats in Saudi Arabia’s first ever election open to female voters and candidates, officials said Sunday, in a milestone for the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom.

“Even if it was only one woman, we’re really proud of that. Honestly, we weren’t expecting anyone to win,” said Sahar Hassan Nasief, a women’s rights activist in the Red Sea city of Jeddah.

But with 2,106 seats up for election, the nine women would comprise less than one percent of Saudi Arabia’s elected council membership.

“We need more than nine,” said Aljazi al-Hossaini, who was defeated in Diriyah on the edge of Riyadh, where three women won seats, according to Saudi news channel Al-Ekhbaria.
She hoped women would be included among the one third of council seats which are appointed by the municipal affairs ministry.
In the first announcement of a woman winner, Salma bint Hizab al-Oteibi was elected in the holy city of Mecca, the official SPA news agency reported.

Another woman, Hanouf bint Mufrih bin Ayid al-Hazmi, won in the northwestern region of Jawf, SPA said, adding that neighbouring Tabuk elected two women.

In the kingdom’s east, Sanna Abdel Latif Hamam and Maasooma Abdel Mohsen al-Rida were elected in Ihsa province, it added.

The duties of municipal councils are limited to local affairs including responsibility for streets, public gardens and garbage collection.

Saudi Arabia is an absolute monarchy with some of the world’s tightest restrictions on women, including a ban on driving.

It was the last country to allow only men to vote, and polling stations were segregated during the ballot.

More than 900 women were among the 6,440 candidates running for seats on 284 councils.

They had to overcome a number of obstacles to participate in the landmark poll.

Female candidates could not meet face-to-face with male voters during campaigning, while neither men nor women could publish their pictures.

Women voters said registration was hindered by factors including bureaucratic obstacles and a lack of transportation.

As a result, women accounted for less than 10 percent of registered voters.

According to election commission data, nearly 1.5 million people aged 18 and above signed up for the polls.

This included about 119,000 women, out of a total native Saudi population of almost 21 million.

At least two parts of the country reported a female turnout of around 80 per cent, according to official data.

In the mountainous Baha region, female turnout was around 82 per cent while about half the registered male voters cast ballots, data showed.

In neighbouring Asir, turnout was about 79 per cent for women and 52 per cent for men.

Female candidates expressed pride in running, even if they didn’t think they would win, while women voters said they were happy at finally being able to do something they had only seen on television or in movies.

Nassima al-Sadah, an activist in the eastern city of Qatif, said the voting process itself took place relatively smoothly, unlike the registration.

Many female candidates used social media to campaign, but a handful of others, including women’s rights activists, were disqualified from the process.

Oil-rich Saudi Arabia boasts modern infrastructure of highways, skyscrapers and ever-more shopping malls.

But women still require permission from male family members to travel, work or marry.

Ruled by the Al-Saud family of King Salman, Saudi Arabia has no elected legislature and faces intense Western scrutiny of its rights record.

A slow expansion of women’s rights began under Salman’s predecessor Abdullah who announced four years ago that women would take part in the 2015 municipal elections.

Men have voted since 2005 in the local polls.

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An Insult to the Jamaican People by the British PM


Featured Image -- 11053I for one is very applaud by the Insults of the Jamaican people by David Cameron the British Prime Minister who recently visit the Island and the only concession that he could make to the Jamaicans is to spend £25 Millions Pound on building Prison.
My question to Mr Cameron is what about Trading with their old footstool so that they can have a better life, what about offer to build more school for the young deprived.
Is Cameron a prawn where the shit stuck in it’s head, less he forget most of Jamaica problems was caused by the British Colonial rule of which that Island is still suffering from both mentally and physically.
Has he forgotten that after the last World War it was the people from that said country who was taken to rebuilt his country that he believes that he was the only one that was born to Govern.
Is it that Cameron sees every Jamaican as a criminal why his only offer is prison, what about those who were born in Britten, are they going to be sent to Jamaica too,think again Cameron the people won’t be taking this likely, it’s time you hands up and help the people your forefather has left in poverty.

JLP blames Ferguson, Gov’t for poverty in St Thomas Eastern



The Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) has accused Dr Fenton Ferguson of poor representation, saying that that was among the reasons for the high rate of poverty in the St Thomas Eastern constituency.

Delano Seiveright, the JLP candidate/caretaker for the constituency, said that the conditions experienced on a ‘Poverty to Prosperity’ tour of the constituency with Opposition Leader Andrew Holness last week showed up a number of examples why St Thomas has become the poorest parish in Jamaica, as outlined in Planning Institute of Jamaica data.

“Collapsed roads, bridges and water systems, along with governmental neglect, widespread unemployment and high rates of poverty were among the long list of issues which were brought to the attention of the JLP leader as we toured sections of the constituency on Thursday and Friday,” Seiveright said in a statement.

He said that the Government and Dr Ferguson, the member of parliament for the constituency, “have failed the parish miserably”. He noted that poverty has more than doubled, from roughly 14 per cent in 2008 to 32.5 per cent or more today, according to the Jamaica Survey of Living Conditions (JSLC).

The JSLC report said that at 32.5 per cent St Thomas replaced St Mary as the poorest parish in 2012.

“To put things into perspective, it is the only parish without a stoplight, has the lowest value in real estate transactions, doesn’t have a parish clock, and is ridden by problems with basic infrastructure at every turn,” Seiveright said.

“There is hardly any worthwhile economic activity, so many young people are depressed and most are desperate to find a way out. Representation, frankly, for St Thomas Eastern cannot get any worse. Despite tremendous potential for development, it has been left to suffer,” he added, noting that the over 500 redundancies at Golden Grove sugar factory, announced recently, would not help the situation.

Seiveright said, however, that it is clear that the people are “keen on fresh ideas, fresh faces, and fresh leadership. They want a change”.

He said that over the two days of the tour, he and Holness shared aspects of a development plan framework for the constituency, which the JLP has been developing.

The tour began at the St Thomas Infirmary in Morant Bay on Thursday, where Holness, Seiveright and other officials met with staff and residents. They also met with representatives of the police and fire brigade, several members of the business sector, market vendors, and residents.

They visited Church Corner, Bamboo River, Lyssons, Prospect, Leith Hall, Port Morant, Airy Castle, Dalvey, Pear Tree River, Arcadia, and Duckenfield, ending with a meeting in Morant Bay on Friday night.

The tour was described by JLP General Secretary Dr Horace Chang as “highly successful and (had a) really unbelievable turnout”.

He said that this signalled that “the seat is now ready to return to its JLP roots”.

EURO JUDGES said Life in Imprisonment is Wrong.


English: Close up of a five euro note
English: Close up of a five euro note (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
de: Mitgliedsstaaten der Euro-mediterranen Par...
de: Mitgliedsstaaten der Euro-mediterranen Partnerschaft en: Members of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Flickr friends
Flickr friends (Photo credit: Meer)
Euro airline
Euro airline (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My first question to these European Judges,is have you ever had any of your family member Life been taken by some unjustifiable two legged beast.
I guess not, as they would have think twice before making such drastic decision by saying that by it is cruel and degrading and would breach their human rights.
Shouldn’t these Murderous,cold hearted scum’s think about this before they carried out their acts.
Well if this view of a few do gooders is about to change the Law of the land, then it’s only going to be one simple solution,which is once you have taken a life,then your life should be taken also.
Who suffer’s the penalty of these murders,Not the murders but the Families and Friends of each victims.
They need to think twice on this one before it’s too late,God Bless.

Iranian bank wins case to be removed from UK sanctions list


Banking District
Banking District (Photo credit: bsterling)
English: John McFall, British politician and C...
English: John McFall, British politician and Chairman of the UK Treasury Select Committee. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
English: East entrance of HM Treasury Français...
English: East entrance of HM Treasury Français : Entrée Est de HM Treasury (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The motto appears on a scroll beneath the shie...
The motto appears on a scroll beneath the shield of the Royal coat of arms of the United Kingdom. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An Iranian bank will be removed from the UK Treasury’s sanctions list following a ruling from the UK’s highest court where judges have been critical of the government’s decision to include secret material in the case.
Bank Mellat had asked the Supreme Court to overturn a ruling that bars UK financial institutions from engaging with the bank as part of efforts to press Iran into abandoning its nuclear programme.

The Supreme Court has ruled in favour of Bank Mellat, which says it has lost $25m a year since the UK sanctions were imposed in 2009.
Lord Sumption, giving the ruling, found that the Treasury “singled out Bank Mellat from other Iranian banks”, that its decision was “irrational” and “disproportionate” and that “the Bank was not in a position to defend itself against the Treasury’s allegation”.
The case will reignite the debate about the use of secret evidence in the justice system because, during part of the hearing, the Supreme Court was asked to sit in private for the first time.
The Treasury wanted the justices to read a closed judgment made by an earlier judge that has never been shown to the bank. The bank, its barristers and the public were all excluded from the hearing.
Lord Neuberger, president of the Supreme Court, said in his ruling that the secret material had “added nothing”.
“There was nothing in it which could have affected our reasoning in relation to the substantive appeal, let alone which could have influenced the outcome of that appeal,” he said.
Lord Hope, another justice, said that the government resorting to the use of such material “will result in every case in an inequality of arms” between the state and those bringing a lawsuit.
He said in this case the Treasury were being “overcautious” and “the attitude which they have adopted in this appeal was a misuse of the procedure” because there was nothing in the closed judgment that could not have been gathered from reading the public ruling.
Today’s ruling is a victory for the rule of law as much as it is for Bank Mellat. The judgment will put enormous confidence in the independence of the British Judiciary
– Sarosh Zaiwalla, senior partner, Zaiwalla Solicitors
The judicial comments put the spotlight back on the Justice and Security Bill, which has expanded the system of closed courts to civil cases.
So-called closed courts are already used for some cases, such as freezing terrorists’ assets. The government argues that such procedures are necessary.
Sarosh Zaiwalla, senior partner at Zaiwalla Solicitors, which acted for Bank Mellat, said: “Today’s ruling is a victory for the rule of law as much as it is for Bank Mellat. The judgment will put enormous confidence in the independence of the British judiciary and sets an example that even controversial disputes can be resolved by applying the principle of the rule of law through the British courts.
“Nevertheless, the reading of the closed judgment clearly contravenes the British principle of open justice. The bank’s success demonstrates just how unjustified closed sessions are,” he added.
The Treasury said the ruling refers to a 2009 order that is no longer in use: “It does not affect the way we currently apply financial restrictions to Iran and will not affect the EU asset freeze that remains in place against Bank Mellat. As set out in the judgment, the Treasury maintains the power to make future orders under Schedule 7 to the Counter-Terrorism Act 2008.”

Syrian forces kill American, British citizen accused of fighting alongside rebels.


Coat of arms of Syria -- the "Hawk of Qur...
Coat of arms of Syria — the “Hawk of Qureish” with shield of vertical tricolor of the national flag, holding a scroll with the words الجمهورية العربية السورية (Al-Jumhuriyah al-`Arabiyah as-Suriyah “The Syrian Arab Republic”). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
CNN Center- Atlanta, GA
CNN Center- Atlanta, GA (Photo credit: hpstyles)
English: Former president Hafez al-Assad was o...
English: Former president Hafez al-Assad was on display everywhere, Maaloula – Syria. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Author - Ammar Abd Rabbo Source - http://flick...
Author – Ammar Abd Rabbo Source – http://flickr.com/photos/21499556@N04/2085667933/ License – Some rights reserved CC-BY-SA (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Billboard with portrait of Assad and the text ...
Billboard with portrait of Assad and the text God protects Syria on the old city wall of Damascus 2006 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Syrian state-run television reported Thursday that forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad killed three Westerners, including an American woman and a British citizen, who they claim were fighting with the rebels and were found with weapons.
Syrian TV identified the woman, releasing what it claimed were images of her Michigan driver’s license and U.S. passport. It also released what is said was the name and passport of a British citizen. It did not identify a third person who it claimed was a Westerner.
The report said the three were ambushed in their car in the flashpoint province of Idlib in northwestern Syria, where government forces have been battling rebels for control.
TV footage showed a bullet-riddled car and three bodies laid out. It also showed weapons, a computer, a hand-drawn map of a government military facility and a flag belonging to the al Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front.
The United States is aware of the claim that an American woman was killed and is working through the Czech Republic mission in Syria to obtain more information, a State Department official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told CNN.
Citing privacy concerns, “we are unable to comment further,” the official said.
A family member of the American woman told CNN on Thursday she was informed by the FBI about the death. The family member said the FBI did not provide any details about how the woman died.
CNN is not identifying the family member, who lives in Michigan, until next of kin notifications have been completed.
British officials in London did not immediately respond to a CNN request for comment.
Al-Nusra Front
If the Syrian state TV report is true, it will not be the first time an American has been accused of fighting with rebel groups to overthrow al-Assad.
In March, a former U.S. soldier was arrested and charged by the U.S. government with illegally using a weapon on behalf of the al-Nusra Front.
Eric Harroun, 30, of Phoenix, was arrested by the FBI after returning to the United States from Syria, where authorities allege he fought with the militant group. He was charged with the alleged use of a rocket-propelled grenade.
The organization he allegedly fought with, al-Nusra Front, is one of several aliases used by al Qaeda in Iraq. Al-Nusra has claimed responsibility for more than 600 attacks in Syria, the Justice Department said.
An FBI affidavit says Harroun crossed into Syria in January 2013 and fought against al-Assad’s forces. He posted photos and videos of himself on the Internet handling RPGs and other weapons, it said.
Harroun served with the U.S. Army from 2000 to 2003.
Troubled talks
The report by Syrian state TV came on the same day that a leader of Syria’s main rebel coalition said the group may not participate in a conference aimed at brokering an end to the civil war.
“It is difficult to continue when Syrians are constantly being hammered by the Assad regime with the help of outside forces,” said George Sabra, acting chairman of the National Coalition, in a statement.
He cited the siege of Qusayr and attacks on Eastern Gouta, a suburb of Damascus, as well as what he said was an “invasion” by Iranian militia members in support of al-Assad.
Russia, which supports Damascus, expressed its own reservations. Conditions on the peace talks demanded by the National Coalition are too restrictive, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters, state news agency ITAR-Tass reported.
“One has the impression that the National Coalition and its regional sponsors are doing their utmost in a bid to prevent the beginning of a political process and resort to all means, including brainwashing in the West, to induce military intervention,” Lavrov is quoted as saying. “We regard such approaches as impermissible.”
In addition, the coalition “is not the sole representative of the Syrian people,” Lavrov said. “The coalition has no constructive platform.”
The National Coalition has demanded that al-Assad step aside as a condition for its participation in the talks, which were originally scheduled to be held this month in Geneva, Switzerland, but have been delayed.
The Syrian government has insisted that any talks be held without preconditions and has said that al-Assad will finish his term and must be qualified to run again in the 2014 elections.
Fighting rages on
Some 3,000 to 4,000 Lebanese Hezbollah fighters have been deployed to Syria, where they are fighting alongside government forces, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told the Foreign Affairs Committee of France’s National Assembly.
The Lebanese fighters have been involved in a battle for Qusayr, a town of about 20,000 that sits astride one route to the Syrian coast and another to the Lebanese border.
For the rebels, holding Qusayr represents a way of limiting the regime’s ability to sustain itself.
On Thursday, the media office of the Syrian Coalition in Istanbul, Turkey, said in an appeal for help that the number of wounded citizens in Qusayr had exceeded 1,000.
The state-run Syrian Arab News Agency said the fighting was part of its mission “to pursue terrorists in Qusayr and its countryside.”
‘One axis’
In an interview broadcast Thursday night by the Hezbollah television station Al-Manar, al-Assad was quoted by Lebanese media as saying, “Syria and Hezbollah are one axis.”
Hezbollah forces “are in Lebanon and Syria, on the border area,” al-Assad said.
According to the pro-Hezbollah Al-Akhbar newspaper, he said, “There are groups of (Hezbollah) party fighters in the border areas with Lebanon. But the Syrian army is the one fighting and running battles against the armed groups, and will continue in this battle in order to eliminate” what he described as “terrorists.”
The president expressed skepticism that the talks proposed for Geneva would prove fruitful, the newspaper reported.
Al-Assad is further quoted as saying that “Syria received the first batch of the Russian S-300 missiles, antiaircraft systems” and that “the rest of the shipment will arrive soon.”
“The contracts are not related to the conflict,” he said. “We negotiate with them for various kinds of weapons for years. And Russia is fulfilling these contracts.”
Russia has been criticized by the West for reported sales of six S-300 air defense systems to Syria under a 2010 contract.
Moscow, however, has said such deliveries would conform with international law and has denied supplying Syria with weapons that can be used against civilians.

How Many more


English: MIA Scouts in front of the Church Adm...
Image via Wikipedia
Soviet troops (in right row) withdrawing from ...
Image via Wikipedia
afghanistan
afghanistan (Photo credit: The U.S. Army)

I am beginning to wonder how many more of our young men and women is going to sacrifice their lives in a war that they have been drafts into that they know little or nothing about.
The toll is there show that they have little or no preparation for such war that our western Governments has engage young men and women into, each day almost begins with another Soldier has been killed in Afghanistan.
There is this question why is it that whenever there’s an up rising in countries for the like of Iraq,Afghanistan,Syria and such a like we are so quick to declared war,is it to protect the Rich Resource of these countries that the lives of these Soldiers has to be sacrifice, or is it that the Big men of the western world wanted to exercise their muscles to claim a prize.
It is time that bad situations been made to be resolved without making it worse than they bargain for, it’s time to get the hell out of Afghanistan and let them fight their own battle and save the lives of our young troops.