Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Spanish police have fired rubber bullets to break up a demonstration near the parliament in central Madrid and have arrested 22 protesters. Late on Tuesday, the police fired rubber bullets and used batons to disperse thousands of demonstrators who had massed at the Plaza de Neptuno square near the lower house of parliament to protest against the austerity measures adopted to address the financial crisis. The police said 22 people had been arrested and at least 32 injured, including four officers. Television images showed police brutally beating protesters and dragging them away. Some demonstrators were bloodied as they were hauled off. The demonstration, dubbed "Occupy Congress" by the organizers, drew an estimated 6,000 people from all walks of life tired of nine straight months of harsh economic austerity measures introduced by Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s government. "My annual salary has dropped by 8,000 euros and if it falls much further I won't be able to make ends meet," said Luis Rodriguez, a firefighter who joined the demonstration. The Spanish economy, the fourth-largest in the 17-nation eurozone, is suffering from the aftershocks of a real estate bust that has devastated not just banks but families as well. Battered by the global financial downturn, the Spanish economy collapsed into recession in the second half of 2008, taking with it millions of jobs. Unemployment is approaching 25 percent. The worsening eurozone debt crisis has increased Spain's financing costs and the country is seeking a European Union bailout similar to the one Greece received. On June 9, eurozone finance ministers agreed to lend 100 billion euros to Spain to save its teetering banks, which means more debt will be added to Madrid's already massive debt burden. Economists say Spain has entered into a second recession. The country has imposed unpopular austerity measures and economic reforms in an effort to persuade its lenders that it is serious about decreasing its overblown deficit to 6.3 percent of gross domestic product in 2012 and 4.5 percent in 2013.
As demonstrators make their views known outside the Iranian president's hotel in New York, former U.S. President Bill Clinton tells CNN he doesn't trust his claims on weapons
د واکسين دتطبيق په ورځوکې که چيرې ضروري کار هم لرئ، د خپلو ماشومانو د ژوندانه او سلامتيا په خاطر هغوى دواکسين دتطبيق کارکوونکو ته بوځئ او دپوليو واکسين پرې تطبيق کړئ . دغه ټکې دافغانستان داسلامي جمهوريت جمهور رييس حامدکرزي تيره شپه دخپلې پنځلس ورځني راډيويي وينا په ترڅ کې بيان کړ اوزياته يې کړه: په همدې اوونۍ کې دماشومانو دګوزڼ يا دپوليو د واکسيناسيون دمنې دکمپاين لومړۍ دوره پيل شوه او دغه کمپاين ما په خپله دڅو ماشومانو په خوله کې د واکسين دڅانګو په څڅولو سره پيل کړ . جمهور رييس وويل: تر پنځه کلني پورې په ماشومانو کې دماشومتوب ددورې ناروغى موجودې وي، که چيرې واکسين نه شي په دغو ناروغيو اخته کيږي خو له نيکه مرغه دغه ټولې ناروغي واکسين لري اوموږ د واکسين دتطبيق له لارې کولى شو له دغو ناروغيو څخه وژغورو . حامدکرزي څرګنده کړه: دماشومتوب د دورې ډيره خطرناکه ناروغى دماشومانو دګوزڼ يا فلج ناروغى ده، که چيرې ميندې ، پلرونه يا مشران تر پنځه کلني پورې په خپلو ماشومانو د پوليو واکسين تطبيق نه کړي، هغوى دګوزڼ په ناروغى اخته کيږي چې عواقب يې خطرناک دى. پوليو ماشومان معيوبوي او ماشومان د ژوندانه ترپايه پورې له دغه معيوبيت څخه ځوريږي . جمهور رييس دعالمانو، دجوماتونوله امامانو، سپين ږيرو، قومي مشرانو اودهيواد دټولو سيمو له ښوونکو څخه وغوښتل چې دپوليو واکسين په تطبيق کې دې له روغتيايي کارکوونکو او رضاکارانو سره چې په همدې مقصد د دوى سيمو او کليو ته ورځي، مرسته وکړي اوکورني دې دې ته وهڅوي چې په خپلو ماشومانو دپوليو واکسين تطبيق کړي . حامدکرزي له طالبانو څخه هم وغوښتل چې دواکسين دتطبيق مخه ونه نيسي، دلته زه طالبانو ته خطاب کوم او هغوى ته وايم چې په کليو اوبانډو کې دې دواکسين دتطبيق خنډ نه شي، ځکه دهر راز واکسين په تطبيق کې خنډ دهيواد دبچيانو ژوند له جدي خطر سره مخامخ کوي . په ماشومانو دپوليو او دنورو واکسينونو تطبيق زموږ د ټولو مسووليت دي . جمهور رييس دخپلې دغې راډيويي وينا په پاى کې په دې ترڅ کې له ټولو کورنيو څخه يې وغوښتل چې هيڅکله په ماشومانو دپوليو واکسين تطبيق هير نه کړئ؛ وويل: که چيرې له هلوځلو سره سره موبيا هم ونه کړاى شول په ټاکلې ورځ په خپلو ماشومانو دپوليو واکسين تطبيق کړئ په دې صورت کې له ډيل پرته په سملاسي ډول خپل ماشوم ډير نږدې کلنيک ته بوځئ او واکسين څاڅکې پرې تطبيق کړئ .
President Barack Obama is condemning an anti-Muslim film and the violence in the Middle East that has followed its release, saying there is "no speech that justifies mindless violence." Obama says in a speech Tuesday before the U.N. General Assembly that "there are no words that excuse the killing of innocent" and "no video that justifies an attack on an embassy." Obama says the video "is an insult not only to Muslims, but to America as well." The president was speaking in the aftermath of violent protests in the Middle East and North Africa connected to the release of an anti-Muslim video produced in the United States. Four Americans were killed in Libya, including U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, along with more than 50 others in the violence.
Britain and the US must establish a credible exit strategy or more innocent people will die in pointless acts of violenceOn a visit to Afghanistan earlier this month, I spent an afternoon at Skateistan, a project in Kabul that offers some of the poorest children in the world a chance to be children. They come to Skateistan to play, skate and learn. What struck me about these kids was their display of both childish playfulness and a kind of maturity you can only get with years of experience. Fourteen-year-old Khorshid embodied both of these qualities. When I met her – just a few days before she was killed by a suicide bomber – she approached me with a smile and asked if I could skate. When I said no, she immediately offered to show me how. As I tentatively got on the skateboard, propped up by Khorshid and Madina, her friend and fellow skater, she told me not to be scared. This is the reality of people living in Afghanistan. Ordinary people tread the line between life and death every day. When they go out for work, or to buy groceries or to pick up their children from school there is a chance they will die on the way there or on the way back. Eleven years after international troops entered Afghanistan to "liberate" Afghans from the tyranny of the Taliban, Afghans still live in a state of war. There are some things that have changed in the past decade. Returning to Afghanistan after 20 years living abroad, I was glad to see that Kabul, almost completely destroyed by two decades of war, is now rebuilt. The roads are paved and all around you see evidence of industry. Mobile phone companies are advertising their services on giant billboards on the side of the roads and posh supermarkets have sprung up all over Kabul to cater for its expat and foreign populations. There is a bustling rhythm of life in Kabul. But all around there is also sinister evidence of violence. Security checkpoints sit every few hundred metres on streets. You can always hear the roar of military helicopters and planes and for me perhaps the most poignant sign of insecurity was that few women were out on the streets. They don't feel safe and you can't blame them. Suicide attacks, unheard of before 2001, have become a regular occurrence in Kabul. Attacks seem to be completely random and often it is just civilians who perish. Despite this terrible fear and violence that people experience on a daily basis, there is an even greater worry that preoccupies Afghans now. Many believe that the departure of Isaf troops will prompt another bloody civil war. No one is certain of his or her fate after 2014. Talking to Kabulis about the exit of international troops reminded me more of doomsday prophecies you might read about in cult literature than anything else. Even the children at Skateistan were talking about it. When I interviewed Madina, Khorshid's friend, about her life and her future, she talked about her hope for a peaceful Afghanistan where she could go to school and pursue skateboarding. What became clear to me from my interactions there and with other ordinary Afghans is that there is no ideology or group that Afghans feel so strongly about as to warrant them to fight. In fact, many feel that there isn't a single party that represents them or caters for their everyday needs. There is a profound sense of fatigue that comes from being in the middle of powerful forces that they can't control. After three decades of war the Afghan people I spoke to want peace. For this to happen, it is imperative that 2014 does not bring another gory conflict to Afghanistan. But it seems the British government is in danger of limiting its exit strategy to a public relations campaign. If there is going to be peace and stability in Afghanistan, the British and the US administrations must work to create a clear and robust framework for exiting Afghanistan. This must include a viable strategy for negotiating with the Taliban and clear terms for power sharing after the troops leave. Afghanistan needs a credible plan for how to continue reconstruction and the building of its economy; and it must include a plan B: what would happen if parties didn't keep to their end of the bargain. If Afghanistan is left without a realistic plan for peace, it will further jeopardise an already unstable region, threaten our own security and more children like Khorshid will die in brutal and pointless acts of violence.
Chaudhry Pervez Elahi said criticised Punjab govt over violent protests on Friday. Deputy Prime Minister Chaudhary Pervez Elahi lashed out at Punjab government saying that the provincial government has completely failed to maintain law and order situation. He was addressing a ceremony in connection with 31tst death anniversary of Chaudhary Zahoor Elahi in Gujrat on Tuesday. During his addresss, Pervez Elahi said that federal government always got success with the support of the people and in the coming elections the masses will also support it. Elahi said that the government is committed to fulfill the people s expectations and a number of steps have been taken for the uplift of common man.
FRONTIER POSTIf one is to learn how to neglect the distressed, he or she is only to watch the act of this nation’s political elite and the grandees of all other hues and stripes. It is for days that flash flooding has been playing havoc with Balochistan’s three districts of Neseerabad, Jaffarabad and Jhal Magsi. The flooding has left them in utter ruins and devastation. Yet the flood-battered of the area are still to surface any compellingly on the radars of the political elite and the self-styled champions of the Baloch people. Mercifully, the prime minister has taken time out to pay them a whistle-stop visit. He has also unfolded for them a special relief package worth Rs.2.6 billion, which though makes not even a mentionable patch on the colossal loss they have suffered from this disastrous flooding. And it isn’t any clear either what would come of this package, given the notoriety the ruling oligarchy led by chief minister Nawab Aslam Riasani in the province has earned for playing ducks and drakes with the public money with impunity for personal enrichment and gains. But at least the prime minister has visited the area, even if belatedly. The other political eminences posing to be the real voice of the people of Pakistan and their true representatives have just not bothered to do even that much, even for form’s sake. They have been addressing rallies, leading protests and demonstrations and what not in every nook and cranny of the country. It is only the flood-devastated areas and their deeply distressed residents that have evaded their interest rigidly. It is the army which is actively engaged in rescue and relief efforts. The provincial administration itself is more conspicuous for its absence than presence in the relief operations. And, quite appallingly, the destroyed area is still to figure on the itinerary of Riasani, that is, if at all he is still present in Quetta and is not on his fond junkets outside the seat of his office. Not even once have his flood-battered people seen of him, whereas it is he who should have been leading the operations personally to rescue them from their distress and provide them every possible relief vigorously. But what is most stunning of all is the muteness of the self-touted champions of the Baloch people. They claim to be the voice of the Baloch people. Yet that voice is totally silent on this Baloch catastrophe. They are so tirelessly voluble about the missing persons. But is this calamity that has befallen the Baloch people any lesser, if not more, horrendous? Scores of residents have just been swept away by the stormy waves, with their fates unknown. Hundreds of thousands of people are still stranded in the flood waters. A lot more have been rendered homeless, with all their belongings, including cattle, having been wiped out. And yet their tragic woe has touched no heart among the so-styled Baloch nationalists. Is it because those eminences see no politics to play in their grief or no brownie points to pick up from talking of their catastrophe? Or, is it that tribal affiliations have overwhelmed a colossal human tragedy? After all, while the grandees of this nationalist clan were making a beeline to the visiting UN rights team “to unburden their hearts”, why none has cared to even speak of the woe of the flood-battered, what to talk of visiting them and sharing their travails? This calamity of the Baloch people has indeed been a great exposer. It has exposed the elites across the spectrum for what they really are: a tribe of imposters, charlatans and opportunists, no friends of the people but mere sharks. Be it the political eminences or the nationalist grandees, they all are the co-travellers, ruthlessly poaching on the human beings to promote their trades. The flood-battered will somehow tide over their distress sooner or later. But the infamy that this tribe has earned by neglecting them will be hard to redeem for times to come, so heartlessly apathetic has it been to their colossal catastrophe.
Hindustan TimesPointing that Pakistan has paid the biggest price for conflict in Afghanistan, President Asif Ali Zardari told US secretary of state Hillary Clinton that peace and stability in his country were tied to a peaceful and stable Afghanistan. Zardari met US secretary of state Hillary Clinton in New York on Monday on the sidelines of the 67th session of the UN General Assembly.According to a news release issued by Pakistan's mission to the UN, Zardari and Clinton had an in-depth conversation on the way forward in bilateral relations. The two discussed the situation in Afghanistan and how Pakistan and the US could cooperate in helping bring peace and stability in the war-torn country. "No country has paid a higher price for the conflict in Afghanistan than Pakistan," the release quoted Zardari as saying. He said Pakistan was prepared to do everything in its power to help an Afghan owned and Afghan led reconciliation process, the release said. He conveyed to Clinton that peace and stability in Pakistan were tied to peace and stability in Afghanistan. Clinton reiterated the desire of US government to continue working with Pakistan for further strengthening bilateral relations and for peace, stability and socio-economic development of the region. Zardari, who will address the 193-member General Assembly on Tuesday, was accompanied by foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar and Pakistan's Ambassador to the US Sherry Rehman. The two leaders also reviewed recent developments in bilateral ties including the opening of the Ground Lines of Communications, high level contacts between the two sides and signing of MOU on the upgradation of the Peshawar Torkham road. "We should build on the positive momentum," the Pakistani President told Clinton. The supply routes into Afghanistan were reopened by Pakistan after Clinton had in July offered her "deepest regrets" for the deadly cross border attack by NATO last November that had killed 24 Pakistani soldiers. Pakistan had closed the crucial supply routes following the attack and had demanded the Washington apologise for the NATO attack. The air raid had brought ties between the two countries to new lows after relations soured following the US raid in Pakistan's Abbottabad town in May that had killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.
Triangular meet between US, Afghanistan and India in New York this week signals that Washington may look to New Delhi to replace Islamabad in the stabilization effort.Beijing, New Delhi and Islamabad are wrangling for position in Afghanistan following the US drawdown, the always-interesting C. Raja Mohan writes in the Indian Express. The upshot: A first-ever triangular meeting between leaders from the US, India and Afghanistan this week sends yet another signal the US may look to replace Islamabad with New Delhi in its stabilization plans. "China’s rising profile in Kabul and the prospects for Indo-US cooperation in Afghanistan are rooted in two important structural changes in our neighbourhood," Mohan writes. "One is the declining American military footprint in Afghanistan and the end to the US’s combat role there by 2014. The other is the growing international disappointment with Pakistan’s negative role in Afghanistan." The US pullout means that India and China will have to take responsibility for their own security, and it looks like the action is heating up. "India became the first country to sign a strategic partnership agreement with Afghanistan a year ago," Mohan notes. "Beijing is the second non-Western power to develop such a partnership with Kabul. During his brief stay in Kabul, Zhou signed a variety of agreements with Afghanistan, including one to 'train, fund and equip' the Afghan security forces." That Beijing is dealing directly with the regime in Kabul, which Mohan calls "despised by [the Pakistani military powers in] Rawalpindi," signals that it's not just the US that's losing faith in Pakistan. "China is no longer willing to put all its bets on the Pakistan army and its proxies, the Taliban and the Haqqani network," Mohan concludes. Meanwhile, "much like China, the US can no longer rely on Pakistan as the sole regional partner in securing and stabilising Afghanistan. Washington is coming to terms with the fact that the contradiction between its interests in Afghanistan and those of the Pakistan army might be irreconcilable," he concludes. Interestingly, Iran may be a partial beneficiary, as India's engagement with Afghanistan also includes "developing transport corridors [through Iran] into landlocked Afghanistan, which today is totally reliant on Pakistan for access to the sea."
Associated PressThe international military coalition in Afghanistan says insurgent attacks have decreased 9 percent in August, compared with the same month last year — a trend that continues a decline after a spike in attacks in May and June. NATO says the shortened poppy harvest in the spring meant that the usual summer fighting season started earlier. The alliance's figures show that insurgent attacks then started decreasing in July and that the trend continued through August. Regionally, attacks decreased in the east and south, but increased in the west and north. Overall, NATO's figures show insurgent attacks are down 5 percent for the year so far, compared with the same period of 2011.
The Express Tribune NewsGovernment restrictions on the Internet in Pakistan have risen over the past year with some use of violence against bloggers and turn to censorship and arrest to squelch calls for reform, a new report from a US advocacy group has found. Pakistan, Bahrain and Ethiopia saw the biggest rollbacks in Internet freedom since January 2011 and were among the 20 countries out of 47 assessed by Freedom House that declined in their rankings. The report, which gave Pakistan a internet freedom score of 63, and the status of not free, notes that the country bans virtual private networks, shuts down information communication technology nationwide and has a record of arresting bloggers and users for political writing and their deaths in captivity. In contrast Tunisia, Libya and Burma, all countries that have seen dramatic political opening or regime changes, improved over previous years along with 14 other countries, the US group, which advocates democracy and open societies, said. The report was released the day that Vietnam handed out stiff jail terms to three high-profile bloggers for their bold criticism of government handling of land rights issues and corruption. Estonia topped the list of countries for freedom of the Internet with the United States in second place, according to the Freedom House report. The rankings were based on obstacles to Internet access, limits on content and violations of user rights. Estonia has a highly developed online culture that includes online voting and access to electronic medical records and some of the lightest content restrictions in the world, the report found. The United States has fallen behind in Internet speed and cost and broadband availability. Methods for controlling free speech on digital media also have grown more sophisticated and diverse the past year. Governments have passed new restrictive laws in 19 states. In Iran, censors have improved software for filtering content and hacked digital certificates. In 14 countries the governments have followed China’s lead in hiring armies of commentators to manipulate online discussions, the authors said. “As authoritarian rulers see that blocked websites and high-profile arrests draw local and international condemnation, they are turning to murkier – but no less dangerous – methods for controlling online conversations,” said Sanja Kelly, project director for Freedom on the Net. Other findings include: * Physical attacks against government critics are intensifying: In 19 of the 47 countries assessed, a blogger or user of information technologies was tortured, disappeared, beaten, or brutally assaulted for their online posts. In five countries, an activist or citizen journalist was killed after posting information that exposed human rights abuses * Bloggers and ordinary users increasingly face arrest for political speech on the web: In 26 of the 47 countries, including several democratic states, at least one blogger or Internet user was arrested for content posted online or sent via text message. * Surveillance has increased with few checks on abuse in 12 of the 47 countries examined * Citizen pushback has increased and had an impact in 23 countries. Advocacy campaigns, mass demonstrations, website blackouts and constitutional court decisions have resulted in censorship plans being shelved, harmful legislation being overturned and jailed activists being released. The report covered the period from January 2011 to May 2012 and is its third on Internet freedom, based on information from researchers mostly based in the 47 countries.