Tag Archives: agence-france-

Hamas says to privatize Gaza crossing

by Agence France-Presse Posted on 02/23/2014 9:53 PM

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories The Gaza Strip’s militant Hamas rulers have said they plan to let private contractors take over the running of the Palestinian territory’s border crossings with Egypt and Israel.

“The government is to give the private sector the opportunity to handle the technical management of crossing points from the Gaza Strip,” Hamas deputy prime minister Ziad al-Zaza told AFP on Saturday and said that a commission of seven businessmen would be dedicated to the project.

“Supervision of all terminals will be under government control,” said Zaza, who is also finance minister.

The coastal strip, whose air and sea lanes are blocked by Israel, has three land crossings; Erez and Kerem Shalom with Israel and Rafah with Egypt.

Kerem Shalom is for goods only, while Erez and Rafah are for passenger traffic.

Although Hamas ousted the western-backed Palestinian Authority from Gaza in 2007 PA officials continue to coordinate the work of the crossings with Israel.

Israel does not have direct political or economic ties with Hamas which it defines as “a terrorist organisation.”

Hamas MPs, who hold the majority of seats in the Palestinian parliament — met in special session in a tent at Rafah on Sunday to demand that Egypt lift border crossing restrictions.

“We are here in front of the Rafah terminal to ask our brothers in Egypt to open Rafah to goods and persons,” deputy parliament speaker Ahmad Bahar said.

See more here:

Hamas says to privatize Gaza crossing

Posted in Gaza Strip | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Moonlit African migrants image wins World Press Photo

By: Agence France-Presse | Thomas Escritt, Reuters February 15, 2014 3:31 AM

John Stanmeyer, a US photographer working for VII agency on assignment for National Geographic, won the World Press Photo of the Year 2013 contest with this picture of African migrants on the shore of Djibouti city at night taken February 26, 2013. REUTERS/John Stanmeyer/World Press Photo/Handout via Reuters

InterAksyon.com The online news portal of TV5

AMSTERDAM – A moonlit image of migrants trying to get mobile phone signals on a Djibouti beach on Friday won the World Press Photo of the Year award for , US photographer John Stanmeyer.

A 19-member jury awarded the prestigious prize for the haunting photograph of silhouetted figures of African migrants facing seawards holding phones up to the sky to capture a cheaper mobile signal from neighboring Somalia so they can call home, as they make their way to a hoped-for better life in Europe.

Djibouti is a common stop-off point for migrants heading from nearby countries like Somalia, Ethiopia and Eritrea in search of a better life in Europe and the Middle East.

The awards, including two top prizes for AFP, were announced at a press conference in Amsterdam, where World Press Photo is based.

“It’s a photo that is connected to so many other stories — it opens up discussions about technology, globalization, migration, poverty, desperation, alienation, humanity,” said jury member Jillian Edelstein of the photo, which was commissioned by National Geographic magazine.

Fellow jury member Susan Linfield said: “So many pictures of migrants show them as bedraggled and pathetic… but this photo is not so much romantic, as dignified.”

Stanmeyer told AFP that he felt “honored” by the prize.

More here:

Moonlit African migrants image wins World Press Photo

Posted in Stop Globalization | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off

'This Ride Is Free' as Protesters Seize Station After Fare Hike

Members of the passelibre movement occupy Central do Brasil station. (Photograph: Reuters)Following Thursday’s announcement by the mayor of Rio De Janeiro that public bus fares would again increase for city commuters, members of the passe libre (free pass) movement staged a raucous march on the main bus station, took it over, and granted everyone free rides on the city buses. As the Guardian’s Jonathan Watts reports: Thousands of commuters were shepherded through demolished ticket gates at the Central do Brasil station amid a violent confrontation over proposed fare rises that resulted in fires, arrests and disruption of transport networks.

See the original post:

'This Ride Is Free' as Protesters Seize Station After Fare Hike

Posted in Occupy France | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Thousands expected at New Year’s rally for democracy in Hong Kong

Gun lover kills 3 kin, maid then self in Camarines Sur 01-Jan-14, 3:52 PM | Agence France-Presse A gun enthusiast held hostage three members of his family and their maid for 10 hours before killing them and committing suicide in Camarines Sur, police said Wednesday. ‘THE WORST IS OVER’ | Fireworks show brings hope to shattered Tacloban 01-Jan-14, 11:24 AM | Lottie Salarda, InterAksyon.com (text and photos) Smiles were plastered on the faces of Taclobanons and international volunteers gathered at City Hall grounds as a 15-minute display by multi-awarded pyrotechnics firm Dragon Fireworks lit up the New Year’s sky over the shattered city.

Read the original here:

Thousands expected at New Year’s rally for democracy in Hong Kong

Posted in Occupy France | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Thousands to rally in Hong Kong for democracy

By: Agence France-Presse January 1, 2014 6:33 AM InterAksyon.com The online news portal of TV5 HONG KONG – Tens of thousands of people will rally in Hong Kong Wednesday to call for universal suffrage, as the city grapples with how its future leaders will be chosen under a long-awaited political reform. Organisers say more than 50,000 people are expected to take part in the annual New Year’s Day protest, less than one month after an official public consultation for the city’s future electoral system opened. Beijing has pledged that the important trade hub, which was given a semi-autonomous status after it was returned by Britain to China in 1997, will be able to choose its own leader in 2017

Go here to see the original:

Thousands to rally in Hong Kong for democracy

Posted in Occupy France | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Prisoner Who Held One of Longest Hunger Strikes Released

Israel released on Monday Palestinian prisoner Samer Issawi, who had staged a nearly 9-month hunger strike in protest over his incarceration.

A freed Samer Issawi next to his mother. (Photo: @MalakaMohammed via Twitter)The release comes as a result of deal made in April between Issawi and Israel in which Issawi would end his near record hunger strike in exchange for 8 additional months in detention, for a total of 17 months, after which he would get a suspended sentence.

Israel reportedly “offered to deport” Jerusalem-born Issawi to a European or other UN nation in April, to which he said, “I do not accept to be deported out of my homeland.”

As Agence France-Presse reports,

Issawi was arrested in 2002 and sentenced to 26 years in prison for “terrorist activities.” He was freed in 2011 as part of a prisoner swap of around 1,000 Palestinians in exchange for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, captured by militants from the Gaza Strip.

He was re-arrested in July 2012, Jerusalem Post reports, “for violating the terms of his release by leaving the Jerusalem area and shortly thereafter began his hunger strike.”

Ahram Online reports that his July arrest was made under Israel’s administrative detention law.

The law, which has been in place since the end of the British mandate in Palestine in 1948, allows for the arrest of Palestinians if they are deemed a “threat” to Israel’s national security.

Supporters of Issawi greeted him Monday evening when he arrived in his home village of Issawiya in East Jerusalem. It is our obligation as freedom fighters to free all the Palestinian political prisoners! Issawi said in an interview after being freed.

In an op-ed published by the UK’s Guardian in March, Issawi wrote that his hunger strike was his

Link:

Prisoner Who Held One of Longest Hunger Strikes Released

Posted in Free Palestine | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Gaza floods force thousands to flee their homes

Mohammed Abed / AFP – Getty Images

A family sits in a tent after their house in Beit Lahia in the northern Gaza Strip was flooded on Dec. 17, 2013.

Torrential rains in the past week have caused heavy flooding in the Gaza Strip, with thousands of people evacuated from their homes and seeking refuge in schools and makeshift shelters, Agence France-Presse reports.

The flooding was so severe that many homes could only be accessed by row boat, with water more than six feet deep in some places, Reuters reports.

Mahmud Hams / AFP – Getty Images

People are evacuated from their homes in a boat in a flooded area of Gaza City on Dec. 17.

“Large swathes of northern Gaza are a disaster area with water as far as the eye can see,” the United Nations Relief Works Agency said in a statement on Saturday.

Further north, heavy snowfallblanketed the Jerusalem area and parts of the occupied West Bank last week.

Related:Holiday Calendar: Where the Middle East’s snow shows

See the original post:

Gaza floods force thousands to flee their homes

Posted in Gaza Strip | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Israel mounts air strike after rocket fire from Gaza Strip

By: Agence France-Presse October 13, 2012 12:44 PM

InterAksyon.com The online news portal of TV5

JERUSALEM — The Israeli air force launched attacks at three sites in the Gaza Strip on Saturday morning, the military said, hours after a rocket fired from the enclave exploded near a house in southern Israel.

A statement from the army said that its “aircraft targeted a terror activity site in the northern Gaza Strip, and two terror activity sites in the central Gaza Strip. Direct hits were confirmed.”

“The sites were targeted in response to the rocket fire towards southern Israel,” the statement added.

On Friday night, Gaza militants fired a Grad rocket that exploded in the yard of a residential building in the southern Israeli town of Netivot.

One person was taken for medical treatment suffering from shock and the building was damaged by the rocket.

On Thursday, Israeli warplanes raided a training camp of the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the ruling Hamas movement, several hours after Gaza militants fired two rockets into southern Israel.

On Wednesday the Israeli air force struck targets in northern Gaza, also without causing casualties. A small group of radical Salafists in a statement sent to AFP said it had fired rockets was in response to air strikes on Gaza.

Earlier in the week, the armed wings of Hamas and Islamic Jihad fired a barrage of projectiles at southern Israel a day after warplanes raided the southern city of Rafah, targeting two men the military said were global jihad activists.

Continued here:

Israel mounts air strike after rocket fire from Gaza Strip

Posted in Gaza Strip | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

'Israelis revolt against apartheid Zionism'?

Israeli citizens have poured into the streets of several major cities to demonstrate against worsening economic and social inequalities, price hikes and reduced living standards.

Prior to this latest street protest, thousands of people gathered in and around Tel Aviv’s Habima Square on June 23 with some 85 reportedly arrested. Protesters were shouting, The nation is after social justice and democracy and chanted slogans against Tel Aviv’s Mayor Ron Huldai and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Press TV has conducted an interview with author of the Hidden History of Zionism, Ralph Schoenman from Berkeley to further discuss the issue.

The program also provides opinions of two additional guests: writer and radio host, Stephen Lendman from Chicago and Mofeed Jaber with the Center for ME Studies and Public Relations. The following is a rough transcript of the interview.

Press TV: What is your take on all of this? We have heard different perspectives, but is it that Israel has set up an elitist society and that the benefits are just going to a certain percentage of the masses or how do you see the problems that they are facing right now from economic perspective?

Schoenman: Well, in the first place we have to understand the parasitic nature of the Zionist state, which is essentially an extension of the US imperialism and its shock troops subsidized and sustained in that way for a very long period of time, a hundred billion dollars in just the last forty years and that is just the official aid number.

The numbers in reality are far greater than that because these so-called loans are never called in and the banking structure with respect to the Zionist State utilizes Israeli-controlled banks at far lower interest rates for the funds of the major states such as California.

So the Israeli state is an apparatus designed by imperialism to function as its shock troops in the region. Within that context of course as you have been describing, the structure of power in Israel is a parot or image of the nature of the corporate capitalism in the stage of terminal decay.

There is a huge concentration of power in the hands of a tiny oligarchy, largely tied to the profiteering from military production for the imperia, but for the most part, the privileged in Israel are increasingly shrinking to a handful.

According to the report in Agence France Presse today, the demands of the protesters in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem and Haifa focused on not only what you quoted, “the only solution to privatization is revolution”, but power from this money is an underworld.

Originally posted here:

'Israelis revolt against apartheid Zionism'?

Posted in Israeli Apartheid | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

US high court faced with gay marriage appeal

Agence France-Presse

WASHINGTON The US Supreme Court could decide later this year whether to take up the issue of gay marriage, after a group of lawmakers asked it be deemed unconstitutional, a court source said Saturday.

People parade during the 12th edition of the homosexual, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (HLBT) visibility march, the Gay Pride, on June 30, 2012 in Paris. AFP / THOMAS SAMSON

The subject is a hot-button issue that soared to the forefront of the political debate in May when Barack Obama became the first US president to say publicly that he was in favor of same-sex marriage.

On Friday, the Republican-led Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group filed a petition with the US high court, asking it to say that a law defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman is consistent with the fifth amendment of the US Constitution, which calls for equal protection under the law.

The lawmakers also asked the nine Supreme Court justices to review an appellate court ruling which said that the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act law is unconstitutional, according to the petition, a copy of which was seen by AFP.

The Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG) consists of three leading Republican lawmakers and two key Democrats, but one of those Democrats, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, said she did not support the move.

In a statement, Pelosi said House Speaker John Boehner and House Republicans decided to waste more taxpayer funds to advance a position rejected by four different courts and to defend discrimination and inequality before the highest court in the land.

The nine justices of the Supreme Court, who are now on vacation after the conclusion of their annual session, will reconvene in late September. At any point thereafter, they could decide on whether to take up the case.

The petition was the first on gay marriage to come before the high court.

Go here to read the rest:

US high court faced with gay marriage appeal

Posted in Gay Marriage | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off