http://www.presstv.ir/A Sunni MP has been dismissed from Bahrain’s parliament for criticizing conditions at a detention center where inmates are held over participating in anti-regime protests. Parliament speaker Khalifa al-Dhahrani said on Tuesday that 31 MPs out of the 40-member chamber voted to sack Osama Mehanna. Sources said Mehanna had a fierce argument with fellow MPs on April 29 after he criticized the situation at Jaw Prison in which mostly Shia protesters are kept in southeastern Bahrain. Since mid-February 2011, thousands of pro-democracy protesters have held numerous demonstrations in the streets of Bahrain, calling for the Al Khalifa royal family to relinquish power. On March 14, 2011, troops from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates invaded the country to assist the Bahraini government in its crackdown on the peaceful protesters. According to local sources, scores of people have been killed and hundreds arrested. Physicians for Human Rights says doctors and nurses have been detained, tortured, or disappeared because they have “evidence of atrocities committed by the authorities, security forces, and riot police” in the crackdown on anti-government protesters. Amnesty International has also expressed concerns over the “continuing detention of prisoners of conscience and the harsh sentences” given by courts in the Persian Gulf country to protesters.
Tuesday, May 20, 2014
Washington has condemned the use of “unprovoked violence” against protests during a visit by officials to disaster-hit mining town Soma last week, in the wake of an accident that claimed 301 victims. “We saw the range of videos that have emerged. We reject the apparent use of unprovoked violence against demonstrators and urge accountability according to Turkey’s rule of law,” U.S. State Department Spokeswoman Jen Psaki said during a press briefing on May 19. Asked about footage that surfaced last week showing Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan engaging in scuffles with protesters during his eventful visit to Soma one day after the mine blast, Psaki said Washington had seen those reports. “I don’t have the specific language. Obviously, if offensive comments were made, we’d of course condemn those. But I think there’s some confusion on that front,” she said. In one video, Erdoğan is seen singling out a protester in the crowd, telling him “if you boo the prime minister of this country, you deserve a slap.” He is seen in other videos grabbing the neck of another man, and allegedly using a racial slur, though his exact words are difficult to discern due to the noise coming from the crowd. Other photographs have also emerged showing one of his advisers, Yusuf Yerkel, kicking a mourner. Meanwhile, Psaki also said the United States was ready to provide assistance to Turkey, but added that no such request had been made by Ankara. The Soma disaster has triggered debate on workers’ condition and labor regulations, and the first arrests have been made in the official probe into the accident.
http://sana.sy/China and Russia have stressed absolute rejection of forcible interference in Syria. "Russia and China find any attempts at an external forcible interference in Syria impermissible," Presidents of Russia and China Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping said in a joint statement at the end of their talks in Shanghai on Tuesday. The two presidents said in the statement “Russia and China support efforts taken by the Syrian government and the international community for a successful finalizing of the process of destroying the chemical weapons of Syria." They voiced deep concern over the current humanitarian situation in Syria, calling for a non-discriminatory and depoliticized approach to soonest settlement of humanitarian problems in Syria and the issue of the Syrian refugees aboard with all norms of international humanitarian law observed. President Putin arrived in China Tuesday morning for an official visit that is aimed at discussing relations between the two countries and other international issues.
In a relevant context, President Putin and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon affirmed the importance of political solution in Syria and Ukraine. Russia Today Website quoted Ki-Moon's Spokesman as saying that Putin has discussed with the UN chief the situation in Syria and the political settlement possibilities to the crisis in the country.
President Obama took an unexpected side trip on his way to a fundraiser Monday night -- he stopped at a Little League game. Obama popped by Friendship Park in Northwest Washington and chatted with four co-ed Little League teams warming up before their games.
Obama was dressed in more of a Presidential than baseball uniform -- dress pants, white shirt and tie -- but he still played a bit of ball. He grabbed a baseball and lobbed it to home plate, where Danny Ringel, 10, caught it. "You saved me from grounding," Obama said. He then posed for photos with the very excited players."I don't want to break up the game," Obama said. "Let's get a picture quick." After yet another round of photos, Obama implored the players to "get back to drills" ahead of their games. But the kids might have trouble concentrating. "Omg, it's a dream come true," one player said of Obama's visit to another. Obama then headed to a fundraiser in Maryland, where tickets ranged from $10,000 to $32,000 per couple. That could buy a whole lot of goodies at a concession stand.
http://dunyanews.tv/Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA)’s session comprising five key members suspended licenses of Geo News, Geo Entertainment and Geo Tez TV out of five TV channels owned and operated by Geo/Jang group and moved for revocation of licenses, Dunya News reported. PEMRA member Mian Shams said that PEMRA’s today’s session comprised members from all over Pakistan. He said that PEMRA members have full authority as per PEMRA rules. He said that a committee will be formed in next session to assert the authority of the chairman. He also recommended immediate suspension and sealing Geo’s offices. He alleged that Mir Shakil tried to influence PEMRA members and the due process. He said that PEMRA has also said the recommendations to Geo/Jang group seeking response by May 28 when the final decision will be taken. He alleged that Mir Shakil wanted private members of PEMRA to decide on the issue in order to influence the process and seek a favourable decision. Another member Israr Abbasi alleged that Mir Shakil tried to call PEMRA members individually but he refused to answer the call. Earlier, Council of Complaints Karachi chapter also recommended revoking GeoTV’s license over airing of allegedly blasphemous content. The recommendation was made by complaints council Karachi following the complaints and reports of allegedly blasphemous content on Geo’s morning show. PEMRA had slammed Geo TV with a show-cause notice for allegedly airing blasphemous content, seeking immediate explanation. The show-cause notice was issued by PEMRA over the objectionable content broadcasted in Geo Entertainment’s morning show ‘Utho Jago Pakistan’. According to PEMRA spokesperson, over 10,000 complaints were received against the show. The complaints were sent to the Complaint Council for review, seeking apt recommendations. It merits mentioning here that a session comprising 5 PEMRA members is underway in Islamabad deliberating over the issue. PEMRA member Israr Abbasi said prior to joining the session that he hopes the committee reaches a consensus over the issue. Geo TV came under immense criticism following the allegedly blasphemous content in its morning broadcast. The aftermath saw several protests across the country and registration of dozens of cases pleading courts to invoke blasphemy laws against the accused. Following the orders of Islamabad Additional Session Judge Jahangir Awan, Margalla Police Station Islamabad registered the case against Geo TV under blasphemy law sections 295-A, 295-C, 298-A and seven Anti-Terrorism Court sections on May 17.
China on Monday decided to suspend activities of the China-U.S. Cyber Working Group as U.S. announced indictment against five Chinese military officers on allegation of cyber theft. "Given the lack of sincerity on the part of the U.S. to solve issues related to cyber security through dialogue and cooperation, China has decided to suspend activities of the China-U.S. Cyber Working Group," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang regarding the U.S. Justice Department's announcement on Monday. The US side announced on Monday indictment against five Chinese military officers on allegation of cyber theft. This U.S. move, which is based on intentionally-fabricated facts, grossly violates the basic norms governing international relations and jeopardizes China-U.S. cooperation and mutual trust, Qin said. China lodged protest with the US side right after the announcement, urging the US side to immediately correct its mistakes and withdraw the "indictment", he said. The position of the Chinese government on cyber security is consistent and clear-cut. China is steadfast in upholding cyber security. The Chinese government, the Chinese military and their relevant personnel have "never engaged or participated" in cyber theft of trade secrets. The U.S. accusation against Chinese personnel is "purely ungrounded and with ulterior purpose," Qin said. Qin said it is a fact criticized by other countries and global media that the US government and relevant departments have long been involved in large-scale and organized cyber theft as well as wiretapping and surveillance activities against foreign political leaders, companies and individuals. China is a victim of severe U.S. cyber theft, wiretapping and surveillance activities. Large amounts of publicly disclosed information show that relevant U.S. institutions have been conducting cyber intrusion, wiretapping and surveillance activities against Chinese government departments, institutions, companies, universities and individuals, according to the spokesman. China has, on many occasions, made serious representations with the U.S. side, Qin said, "We once again strongly urge the U.S. side to make a clear explanation of what it has done and immediately stop such kind of activities." Qin warned that China would react further to the U.S. "indictment" as the situation evolves.
Moscow and Beijing have rejected the imposition of sanctions as political tools and condemned attempts at “encouraging and financing” regime changes in other countries in a joint statement released during President Putin’s official visit to China. Having faced economic sanctions and threats of more of to come from the West, Russia has turned to the East, seeking to boost business ties in a friendlier environment. An impressive package of deals on energy, business and infrastructure has already been signed in Shanghai. More is yet to come, judging by the title of the joint statement by Beijing and Moscow, which promises “a new stage in full-scale partnership and strategic relations.” Boosting mutual trade is not all there is to that “new stage,” as following the meeting with Xi, the Russian president shared expectations of closer cooperation between the countries in international politics. “We have common priorities on a global and on a regional scale,” Putin said. “We’ve agreed upon closer coordination of our foreign policy steps, including those in the UN, BRICS and APEC,” he added. Among attitudes Russia and China share is their mutual dislike of economic restrictions imposed for political reasons. “The parties stress the necessity to… reject unilateral sanctions rhetoric,” the joint statement reads. Economic restrictions applied as punishment are no better than financial aid to forces that seek “a change in constitutional system of another country,” the Russian-Chinese statement says. Moscow still feels bitter about the role it believes the US played in the Ukrainian coup. Russia has accused Washington of investing $5 billion in the regime change in Kiev. A number of European politicians, meanwhile, acknowledged the EU might have been pressing Ukraine too hard to sign the integration deal which, according to German Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel, could have created “the impression in Ukraine that it had to decide between Russia and the EU." The ongoing political crisis in Ukraine can only be resolved peacefully, Putin and Xi Jinping believe, calling on political opponents in Ukraine to switch from confrontation to dialogue. "The sides urged all Ukrainian regions and public and political groups to enter in broad nationwide talks, develop jointly a concept of further constitutional development of the country, envisaging full observation of universally recognized rights and freedoms of people," the statement reads. News rules for cyberspace Russia and China have called for creation of new “universal rules of behavior in information space,” citing concerns over some of communication technologies “running contrary to international stability and security, damaging countries’ sovereignty and violating personal privacy.” The ‘rules for internet’ comment comes amid scandal with US and China trading accusations of online espionage. On Monday, a grand jury in the United States indicted five Chinese military - allegedly officers of an elite cyber squad - with hacking into American computer networks and stealing sensitive business information from US companies. China dismissed all US accusations and published proof that Washington is actually stealing data from China. The Chinese Foreign Ministry also summoned the American ambassador to China for an explanation, urging him to drop all charges against China’s military officers.
Afghanistan's healthcare industry is in shambles and requires immediate attention, citizens say.
KABUL – Afghan residents are looking forward to the next government coming up with reforms to fix the country's broken healthcare system as they head to the polls June 14 to choose a new president.While international investment in machinery has given the healthcare infrastructure a boost since 2001, the country still has many hurdles and tasks ahead of it. "Things have improved tremendously in the past 12 years or so, but the mission is far from accomplished," said Dr. Amir Hayat, a medico based in Kabul. "The fact that most Afghans head to other countries for treatment shows how littlethey trust their own hospitals here." Hayat suggests upgrading the infrastructure and training doctors as the way forward. "The new government has to take it up with more seriousness than the previous government; it has to be a priority," he said. Medical care availability, shortcomings in Afghanistan The country has made improvements in the healthcare industry in recent years. About 2,170 healthcare centres operate across the country, according to the Ministry of Public Health, and they are more widespread than they were in 2001, when key cities had hospitals, but outlying districts had no real options. About 75% of Afghans have access to healthcare services, up from the 9% who could get treatment under the Taliban's rule, Oxfam, a global anti-hunger NGO, estimated in its 2013 annual report. And the mortality rate for children under the age of 5 has dropped to 99 per 1,000 live births in 2012, from 176 per 1,000 live births in 1990, according to UNICEF data. But the World Health Organisation (WHO), the UN's public health arm, calls Afghanistan's health status one of the worst in the world with the per capita incidence of some of the indicators of ill health three- to five-fold higher than in neighbouring countries. Insurgents also continue to attack healthcare facilities. "Militants have destroyed the healthcare system in provinces like Kandahar, Helmand and Baglan," Kanishka Turistani, spokesman for the Ministry of Public Health, said. "They … don't care about the public." Lack of quality care The healthcare industry faces challenges, Mohammad Ishaq Fayaz, an industry observer, agreed. "There are run-of-the-mill hospitals and dispensaries across the country, but the quality is missing," he said. "The focus must be on quality services and upgrades to healthcare infrastructure." The next president, Fayaz said, should focus on standardising healthcare services and raising hospitals to a par with those in neighbouring countries. A shortage of modern and sophisticated medical equipment makes the job difficult. In remote areas, healthcare centres lack even basic equipment, forcing patients to journey to larger cities. "The next government must appoint an expert committee to suggest how the problems related to poor health care can be immediately addressed," said Dr. Abdul Toori of Jalalabad. "The out-dated equipment must be replaced to start with, and medics should be trained in using it." A multi-faceted approach to improving health care A wide-ranging strategy must be the hallmark of improving the healthcare system, Dr. Abdul Halim, former deputy education minister, said. He noted several factors that require attention, including the promotion of preventive medicine and availability of affordable treatment. But real improvement, he said, is rooted in better training for medical professionals. "The new government should send healthcare professionals to advanced countries ... to help them improve their skills and learn how to operate the latest technological devices," he said. "Then they will be in a position to offer quality health care at par with other countries in the region." The next government must develop healthcare infrastructure in villages and small towns, medical insiders agree. "People from various provinces come to Kabul for treatment, but they are left dejected because for most of them the diagnosis is wrong," Dr. Muneer Azizi, a Kabul-based medico, said. "The new government should invest generously in villages, provide them clean drinking water and train young medicos to take care of patients there."
Mirpur khas: Javed Jounis Masih and his wife, Nazia, Rose Marry and kiran have been taken into custody against spreading religious Disarray through pamphlets at Railway station Mirpur on Saturday afternoon.A case was registered against four Christian individuals, accused of spreading religious disarray through pamphlets at railway station, and were then taken to judicial magistrate Mirpur khas police station. In addition, the case is under inquiry now. Hundreds of religious workers were gathered outside the police station and security was high alerted.
The incident was happened when javed jounis Masih and his wife, Nazia, from Sialkot, and two women Rose Mary and Kiran, from Hadyrabad, were distributing pamphlets based on religious disarray at railway station and railway platform. Police reached on incident and arrested them when a worker of an Islamic organization, Ahl e Sunnat wal Jammat, informed police. Police has registered a case against accused under (A-298-506(II- 295 for dishonoring and disrespecting religion. The case is under investigation and women have been transferred to woman jail Hyderabad under tight security. - See more at: http://www.christiansinpakistan.com/four-christian-individuals-arrested-against-spreading-religious-disarray/#sthash.Kt7ASHcX.dpuf
The Baloch Hal NewsAn underground religious extremist group has warned all private schools in Balochistan’s western Panjgur district to completely shut down girls’ education or prepare for ‘the worst consequences as prescribed in the Quran”.
By Zachary KeckA new report suggests China may sell Pakistan armed drones. Indeed, it’d be surprising if it didn’t.
A Pakistani police officer says a Chinese tourist has been abducted in the country's northwest. A Taliban group has claimed responsibility. Officer Sadiq Baluch says the Chinese national's passport, bicycle and belongings were found on Tuesday. He says the man went missing on Monday from Dera Ismail Khan district. Baluch says the man had apparently entered Pakistan from neighboring India in April. He says the police were not informed about the man's presence in the district bordering Pakistan's lawless tribal region, which is home to local and al-Qaida-linked foreign militants. A Pakistani Taliban group commander, Abdullah Bahar, claimed responsibility. Bahar says the group will use the man to get his comrades freed from Pakistani custody. No one at the Chinese Embassy in Islamabad immediately responded to calls for comment.
A court in the Pakistani city of Karachi has ordered that charges be dropped against a US FBI agent who was arrested for carrying ammunition.Police told the court they were dropping the case after the government confirmed Joel Cox was authorised to carry arms for "personal protection". Mr Cox was freed on bail earlier this month after being detained with bullets in his luggage at Karachi airport. The US government said that he was on a temporary mission in Pakistan. The FBI agent was held under anti-terrorism laws after security staff found 15 bullets for a 9mm handgun in his luggage ahead of a flight from Karachi to Islamabad. He was bailed on a bond of 1m rupees ($10,000). No weapon was found so Mr Cox could not be booked under the Illegal Arms Act, police said. He was in Pakistan in connection with a police reforms programme being run by the government, officials added. American agents operating inside Pakistan have been the cause of strained relations in the past and have fuelled anti-US feeling in the country. In 2011 there was furore when CIA contractor Raymond Davis was arrested for shooting dead two men following what he said was an attempted armed robbery in Lahore. Mr Davis was later released after the families of the dead men accepted "blood money". The United States and Pakistan co-operate in the global fight against Islamist militants, angering many Pakistanis.
Seven people were killed in different incidents of violence in the metropolis. Two brothers were gunned down near Football Chowrangi area of Orangi Town. The victims, identified as Ameen and Amaan were members of Sunni Tehreek. In Bahar Colony of Lyari, a woman was shot dead while another person was killed in a gun attack in Khyberabad, Orangi Town. In Manghopir, unidentified men stormed in to the house of prayer leader Qari Barkat and stabbed him to death. Two bullet-riddled bodies were discovered in Rizviya society. They were shifted to Abbasi Shaheed Hospital.