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Karadzic vows to defend himself

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Karadzic vows to defend himself)

Bosnian Serb genocide suspect Radovan Karadzic is to defend himself before the UN war crimes court, his lawyer has said on Wednesday, raising memories of the trial of his late ally, Slobodan Milosevic.

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Karadzic, who stands indicted for genocide and crimes against humanity, was arrested in Belgrade on Monday, having evaded capture for more than a decade partly thanks to a fake identity as an alternative health guru.

VIDEO: Sarajevo's reaction to Karadzic arrest

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During the Bosnian war Karadzic was a close ally of then Yugoslav president Milosevic, who was also indicted for war crimes and chose to defend himself before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.

Milosevic's manipulation of the role was blamed for making his trial one of the longest in international legal history at more than four years. The Serbian strongman died in custody in The Hague in 2006 before a verdict was delivered.

“Karadzic will have a legal team in Serbia that will help him with his defence but he will defend himself” at the ICTY, his lawyer Svetozar Vujacic said.

The lawyer confirmed he would file an appeal against Karadzic's transfer to the UN war crimes court in The Hague on Friday.

Appeal against transfer

“They (the court) will not be able to make a decision before Monday because I will send the appeal on Friday,” said Mr Vujacic, who had already indicated he intends to delay the transfer for as long as possible.

Once filed, a special panel of Serbia's war crimes court will have three days to decide on the application.

Under Serbia's law on cooperation with the ICTY, suspects can appeal their transfer to the UN war crimes tribunal before a special committee approves the move.

The process could take up to nine days, but Serbia's war crimes prosecution has said it expects Karadzic to be sent to the UN court by Monday or Tuesday at the latest.

Meanwhile, up to 250 hardline nationalists gathered in central Belgrade to protest for the second consecutive day against Karadzic's arrest.

Cordoned by the anti-riot police, the protesters – mostly members of the ultra-nationalist right-wing organisation Obraz and supporters of the hardline opposition Serbian Radical party – chanted Karadzic's name and insults addressed to Serbia's pro-European leadership, blaming it for the arrest.

Fake identity

Since his arrest, the public's imagination has been captured by the reports of the fake identity Karadzic forged.

The 63-year-old had made himself virtually unrecognisable in order to eke out a living through the practise under the false name of Dragan Dabic, deceiving naturopaths, health writers, landlords and many more.

He disguised himself under flowing white hair, a thick beard, glasses and a white Panama hat, enabling him to move freely throughout Belgrade and several Serbian towns.

One Serbian daily described the look as that of a “loveable guru”.

Karadzic used public transport, even appeared on television and drank at cafes in downtown Belgrade's main boulevard with his new colleagues.

He was finally nabbed by security forces on a suburban bus in the Serbian capital after an apparent tip-off from a foreign intelligence agency.

Intelligence tip-off

Speaking to AFP, lawyer Mr Vujacic said his client now looked like the Karadzic of old after having his hair and beard trimmed.

“He's looking good. He had a hair cut, he shaved himself, and is in great shape. He now looks just like before,” Mr Vujacic told AFP.

Karadzic faces 11 counts of genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and other atrocities before the UN tribunal.

The charges are mainly related to two of Europe's worst atrocities since World War II, the 44-month siege of Sarajevo which killed more than 10,000 people and the Srebrenica massacre of some 8,000 Muslim men and boys in 1995.

In Bosnia's bitter inter-ethnic war, Karadzic is also said to have authorised so-called “ethnic cleansing” in which more than a million non-Serbs were driven from their homes.

Karadzic's daughter Sonja Karadzic-Jovicevic has appealed to the powerful international envoy to Bosnia to return the family's seized travel papers, and to allow them to visit him in a Belgrade prison cell.

After Karadzic's arrest there are only two more fugitives of the UN court at large: former military chief Ratko Mladic, 65, and Goran Hadzic, 49, a former Serb politician wanted for “ethnic cleansing” in Croatia.

Zimbabwean exiles vow to return

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Zimbabwean exiles vow to return)

Zimbabwean exiles in South Africa are becoming increasingly frustrated by the impasse in their country, and are threatening to take the law into their own hands.

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Last week, Brian Thomson brought you the story of Patson Murimoga, an activist for the opposition MDC party, who fled Zimbabwe after being attacked with an axe and faces certain death if he returns to his homeland.

VIDEO: Brian Thomson's tracks down Patson Murimoga

On the move, yet again. Just when things seemed like they couldn't get any worse for Patson Murimoga, they have. The caretaker in the block of flats in which he's been staying has objected to the fact that so many exiled activists are living there, and he has to move out.

PATSON MURIMOGA, ZIMBABWEAN EXILE: I have got food, I have got blankets, I have got my clothes, but I don't have a place for myself to stay.

Patson cuts a sad figure on the streets of Pretoria. He is still deeply traumatised by the attack he endured.

When we met him last week, he had just one day left on his visa. He told us that the people who assaulted him would kill him if he returned to Zimbabwe, so we helped him to extend his stay, but it was only a temporary reprieve.

PATSON MURIMOGA: Sometimes I end up thinking it would be better for myself to commit suicide because I can't live. The situation is bad.

Patson carries baby clothes given to him by a South African who felt sorry for him, but he has no way of getting them to his wife. Because of his injuries, he can't even work illegally. He is beginning to run out of hope.

PATSON MURIMOGA: Whom can I tell my problem? I can't tell even my father. I can't tell even my brother. There is no-one who can help me here in South Africa.

It seems like almost every Zimbabwean exile here has a sad story to tell. Three million have fled to South Africa over the past 10 years, many narrowly escaping with their lives.

The young activists who'd taken Patson in lost friends and family in the run-up to the election.

They carry with them pictures of those who died.

MAN: He was killed, finally killed, on May 10.

Some of them even have copies of the official paperwork ordering their elimination.

MAN: 'Elimination' means to be killed. That is the term they use.

As they struggle to survive, the activists here in South Africa say they feel completely abandoned.

WISEMAN MAYENGEZA, ZIMBABWEAAN EXILE: There are about 30 civil society organisations here in South Africa which purport to represent the victims of Zimbabwe, and, up to date, even the MDC doesn't pay even a cent here.

But still, they stand by their leader, fiercely supporting his refusal to enter a government of national unity with the people who tried to kill them.

WISEMAN MAYENGEZA: We are going to pursue the struggle regardless of how we are feeling and how we are neglected, we don't mind, but we will go back to fight for a new political regime in Zimbabwe, and let me tell you, Robert Mugabe will not last even for six months. We are going there. We know what we are going to do, we are going to mobilise, and this time, I am sorry, we might be forced to revenge.

Patson may be less animated than some of the other activists, but he does agree with their argument.

PATSON MURIMOGA: After killing us, they say we should have to make a government of national unity. A government of national unity for what?

Since fleeing Zimbabwe, Patson has been unable to contact his wife and he doesn't know if and when he'll see his baby. But, like the rest of the Zimbabwean activists in exile here, he says he has no regrets. In Pretoria, Brian Thomson, World News Australia.

Jellyfish protein gets Nobel prize

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Jellyfish protein gets Nobel prize)

Osamu Shimomura of Japan and US duo Martin Chalfie and Roger Tsien have won the Nobel Chemistry Prize for a fluorescent protein derived from a jellyfish that has become a vital lab tool.

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Green fluorescent protein (GFP) has revolutionised research in medicine and biology, enabling scientists to get a visual fix on how organs function, on the spread of disease and the response of infected cells to treatment, the Nobel jury said.

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More science and technology stories

Glowing praise

“GFP has functioned in the past decade as a guiding star for biochemists, biologists, medical scientists and other researchers,” it said.

“This protein has become one of the most important tools used in contemporary bioscience.”

The gene to make GFP is inserted into the DNA of lab animals, bacteria or other cells, where it is “switched on” by other genes. The glow becomes apparent under ultraviolet light.

Coming out of the dark

The telltale protein gives researchers an instant way of monitoring processes that were previously invisible.

By tagging nerve cells, scientists can for instance follow the destruction caused by Alzheimer's disease. Tumour progression can be followed by adding GFP to cancer cells. By adding GFP to a growing mouse embryo, they can see how the pancreas generates insulin producing beta cells.

In one spectacular experiment, researchers made a “brainbow,” in which they tagged different nerve cells in the brain of a mouse with a kaleidoscope of colours.

10,000 jellyfish under the microscope

Shimomura, born in 1928 and now a professor emeritus at Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) and Boston University, pioneered this tool with a study of the jellyfish Aequorea victoria in the 1960s.

He isolated a few precious grams of luminescent liquid from 10,000 jellyfish, which led to the discovery that its source was GFP, a so-called chromophore — a chemical group that absorbs and emits light.

Japanese achievers winning more Nobels

Shimomoura was the third Japanese citizen to win a Nobel this year, after Makoto Kobayashi and Toshihide Maskawa won the Physics Prize Tuesday along with Japanese-born American Yoichiro Nambu for groundbreaking theoretical work in fundamental particles.

“Honestly, I am surprised to see so many as four Japanese win in one year,” Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso told reporters. “It's really good.”

Chalfie, born in 1947 and a biology professor at Columbia University, followed up on Shimomura's research.

He helped identify the gene that controls GFP and found ways of inserting it into a common lab tool, the millimetre-long roundworm called Caenorhabditis elegans.

Green light for arsenic detection

His idea was that by connecting the gene for GFP with various gene switches, or promoters, he would be able to see where different proteins were produced.

“The green light would act as a beacon for various events.”

Tsien, born in 1952 and a professor at the University of California, completed the final step, developing new variants of GFP that shine more strongly and in different colours, allowing researchers to mark different proteins in different colours to see their interactions.

“Today, GFP is a standard tool for thousands of researchers all over the world,” the Nobel panel said.

“When scientists develop methods to help them see things that were once invisible, research always takes a great leap forward,” it added.

GFP inserted in bacteria has also been adapted to make sensors that glow in the presence of arsenic – a major problem in groundwater in Bangladesh – and TNT.

Wake-up call

Tsien, who was woken up by a call from the Nobel panel just before 3:00 am in California, said he was surprised to have won the prize.

“There have been rumours, but I was a little surprised anyway,” he told Swedish news agency TT.

Bruce Bursten, president of the American Chemical Society, hailed the choice of this year's laureates, saying it “showcases chemistry's critical but often-invisible role in fostering advances in biology and medicine.”

He added: “This is chemistry at its very best, improving people's lives.”

The Nobel medicine and physics prizes were announced earlier this week, while the Literature Prize was due on Thursday and the Peace Prize on Friday.

The Economics Prize would wrap up the awards on October 13. Laureates receive a gold medal, a diploma and 10 million Swedish kronor (1.42 million dollars), which can be split between up to three winners per prize. The formal prize ceremonies will be held in Stockholm and Oslo on December 10.

Wall St rebounds after record rout

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Wall St rebounds after record rout)

A powerful rally has helped Wall Street recoup a large portion of the previous day's rout, amid renewed hopes for the passage of a massive financial rescue package.

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average leapt 485.21 points (4.68 percent) to close at 10,850.66, in the third-largest single-day point gain a day after the worst one-day point loss for the blue-chip index.

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IN-DEPTH: More on the financial crisis

YOUR SAY: Are you worried about the financial crisis?

The Nasdaq jumped 98.60 points (4.97 percent) to 2,082.33 and the broad-market Standard & Poor's 500 index rallied 58.35 points (5.27 percent) to

1,164.74.

“Equity markets jumped at the open and didn't look back. Investors felt confident that lawmakers would pass a bailout bill by midweek,” said Sara Kline at Economy.com.

Market action came after a record plunge of 777 points for the blue-chip Dow index overnight on Monday in the wake of a rejection by the US House of Representatives of a massive $US700-billion plan to aid the troubled banking sector and steady a fragile economy.

Liz Ann Sonders, chief investment officer at Charles Schwab & Co., said part of the gains represent “a simple and natural rebound from the carnage of yesterday after some time to digest the implications of the House voting no on the mortgage rescue bill.”

“It may also reflect that the Asian markets didn't tumble as much as some expected after yesterday's US market plunge,” she added.

Hopes rise for bailout bill

Sonders said the market still held out hopes for passage of some aid plan to help the financial sector recover from the bursting of the housing bubble.

“The Bush administration probably realizes it can't suffer another defeat and they will likely pull out all the stops to get the few additional votes they need, which will most likely come from the Republican side,” she said.

“A few Democrats could probably be pulled over, too, particularly if a compromise can be drafted.”

Among key financial stocks at the heart of the financial storm, National City Corp. rallied 28 percent to $1.75 after a 63 percent slide on Monday. The regional bank however was placed on credit review for possible downgrade by Moody's Investors Service.

Sovereign Bancorp, another regional banking group, also rebounded from heavy losses, rising 69 percent to $3.95 after it replaced its top executive and said it was well-capitalized with reduced exposure to the battered housing sector.

Among the big financial firms, Bank of America rose 15.7 percent to 35.00 dollars, Citigroup jumped 15.5 percent to 20.51 and Wells Fargo added 12.8 percent to 3753. Morgan Stanley increased 9.6 percent to 23.00 dollars and Goldman Sachs rose 6.05 percent to 128.00.

Many tech shares also bounced back from heavy selling. Apple climbed 7.98 percent to 113.66 dollars.

Bonds retreated after big gains from a flight to safety on Monday. The yield on the 10-year US Treasury bond increased to 3.827 percent from 3.632 percent Monday and that on the 30-year bond rose to 4.305 percent against 4.199 percent. Bond yields and prices move in opposite directions.

The US Senate will vote on Wednesday evening on 700 billion dollar Wall Street bailout package, a Democratic aide said.

Harold Keke – Interview

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Harold Keke – Interview)

REPORTER: David O’Shea

This is Harold Keke’s territory.

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It takes six hours by banana boat to get from the capital, Honiara, to his stronghold here on the other side of Guadalcanal.

It’s here, on the notorious Weather Coast, that Keke stands accused of carrying out a reign of terror.

HAROLD KEKE, SOLOMONS ISLANDS REBEL LEADER: Mighty God, Father, Son, Spirit.

Before our interview begins, a prayer.

HAROLD KEKE, (Translation): I’m glad that You answered my prayer and allowed the reporter to come and hear my story, for the truth to be made known to the world and to the nation. To know about the reality and the root cause of the ethnic tension on this island.

Harold Keke insists he’s not the bad guy he’s made out to be and John Howard should think twice before jumping to any conclusions.

HAROLD KEKE, (Translation): I would like to send my message to Howard. I would like Howard to look carefully and establish who is fighting for right and who is wrong and who is lying to get Howard to believe their story.

Keke says he’s been set up by none other than PM Sir Allan Kemakeza.

HAROLD KEKE, (Translation): Australia gives him money for aid to help the government, but instead, the leaders themselves steal the money then they lie to get more money so they can catch Harold Keke and so on.

And then they say that Harold Keke is a thief, and so on. And then they ask for money for help. So they just use my name, Harold Keke, to make money.

Keke is often described as a thug and a pathological killer. But he says the rebel movement he leads has a clear political agenda.

REPORTER: What is it you want for Guadalcanal? What is your mission, what is your objective, your aim?

HAROLD KEKE: My aim is independence.

Because of Keke’s deep mistrust of the government, he says he has no intention of giving up his weapons when the Australian-led forces arrive.

HAROLD KEKE, (Translation): We’re standing for our rights. If we were criminals or rapists or thieves, we would not be justified in standing up for our rights because we’d be wrong, but as we are right we are justified in keeping our arms.

REPORTER: I’ve read in the newspaper that Harold and his men have killed up to 50 people. How many people have you killed?

Keke and his operations chief, Justin, don’t know where to start. But they claim to have chosen violence only as a last resort.

JUSTIN, OPERATIONS CHIEF, (Translation): We would like to have a dialogue to put forward our demand but they’ve ignored our demand many times. So we decided to go another way.

We decided to go the way of the gun. We’d force them to agree to our demands. So, those of us that stand against the government, are accused of killing up to 50 people, some of this isn’t true.

HAROLD KEKE, (Translation): You’d better start right from the beginning.

JUSTIN, (Translation): I’ll count again, because the 10 people that we shot at Koio, the Malaitans, we killed them because Allan Kemakeza and the government sent them.

In the two days that I spent with Keke, I met three men from the Melanesian brotherhood who are being held hostage here.

Justin says there was a fourth man who was acting suspiciously.

JUSTIN: He asked too many questions so we pointed a gun at him. Then he confessed. Allan Kemakeza sent me to spy.

And when I go back, he’ll give me money, $5,000 along with a 25 horsepower engine, a Yamaha, for going to market.

So, we told him, “We are fighting against the government. And you help the government, so you will not return.” He decided to run away and he escaped.

We fired two warning shots, but he didn’t surrender. That was his death sentence on the spot.

Before our interview is finished, Harold Keke makes a final plea to the Australian PM.

HAROLD KEKE, (Translation): But for now, I want to tell you, Howard, we are fighting for our rights. Because we don’t want the government to steal our land and resources, because these are the root causes of the war.

So, please, Howard, look at the law before you accept the request by the Kemakeza to apprehend me and my boys who are standing for their right to the land on which we stand and fight.

McCanns launch ads for Maddie

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on McCanns launch ads for Maddie)

The renewed offensive was aimed at shifting the focus back onto the search for the toddler and away from speculation about her parents, Gerry and Kate McCann.

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Friends of Madeleine's 39-year-old mother have insisted that she was an exemplary parent who would never harm her children.

Formal suspects

The McCanns have been named formal suspects in Madeleine's disappearance.

The status means they can no longer speak about the police investigation.

Madeleine McCann was three years old when she vanished from her bedroom in an apartment in the southern Portuguese coastal resort of Praia da Luz.

Gerry McCann, a hospital cardiologist, and Kate McCann, a family doctor, were with friends at a restaurant about 150m away.

Kate McCann's friend, Linda McQueen, says it is unthinkable that either parent would have harmed their eldest child.

"Not at all, not a shadow of a doubt from anybody at all ever," she says.

‘Loving parents’

"They are the most loving, caring, family-oriented couple that you could ever meet.

“They are absolutely fabulous. Those three children are the world to them."

Madeleine was "everything they ever wanted", Ms McQueen says.

"They had been up and down about with whether they could get pregnant and the in-vitro fertilisation and it was a dream come true.

“Kate always wanted a large family so it means the world to her.

“She is just a fabulous mum."

Asked if the McCanns could cope if Madeleine was found dead, she replied: "We are not even ready to go down that road."

Publicity campaign

The $A193,587.42 publicity campaign will consist of newspaper, television and billboard adverts primarily in Portugal and Spain.

The blitz will be financed by Madeleine's Fund, the non-profit organisation administering donations to aid the search.

"The fund will finance a broad range of initiatives in advertising to remind everyone that Madeleine is still missing," Gerry McCann's brother John says.

"This financing of advertisements will complement previous efforts by the fund and many motivated individuals – family, friends and people touched by our cause.

"I hope that the general public will continue to support us in this.

“It is so important that we remember 'don't you forget about me' – our lovely wee Madeleine."

The family said earlier this week it would not use the fund to pay for the McCanns' legal costs.

Government facing defeat over ETS

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Government facing defeat over ETS)

The Rudd government is facing defeat in the Senate over its revised emissions trading scheme, with key independent Senators threatening to veto it.

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The Australian Greens, coalition, Family First senator Steven Fielding and independent Nick Xenophon have all said they will not support the new ETS.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd yesterday revealed plans to delay the scheme by a year – to July 2011 – citing the global economic crisis.

Under the new ETS, Labor has pushed up its emissions reduction target to 25 per cent of 2000 levels by 2020 – up from a maximum of 15 per cent – depending on the strength of an international agreement. The bottom end of the target range is still five per cent.

The government needs the support of seven crossbench senators to get it through the upper house.

But Australian Greens leader Bob Brown said his party, which holds five crossbench seats in the Senate, would vote against the ETS if the target was just five per cent.

“We will be opposed to this legislation in the Senate,” Senator Brown told ABC Television.

Rudd \’trying to force early election\’

Senator Brown accused the government of trying to prompt an early election on the issue, by forcing a double dissolution of parliament.

Coalition frontbencher Andrew Robb, who is assisting Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull on an emissions trading design, said the coalition was backing a five per cent reduction target by 2020.

“We believe that we can deliver at least that target and probably better without sacrificing tens of thousands of jobs and with giving business certainty,” Mr Robb told ABC Television.

Mr Robb said a global agreement to reduce carbon emissions by 25 per cent was unlikely.

“The government knows that that\’s nigh on impossible if that\’s going to occur,” he said. “It\’s a hollow promise, it\’s a hollow guarantee.”

Mr Turnbull said the opposition would not support the scheme in its current form, and suggested the government refer the proposals to the Productivity Commission for an inquiry.

The Liberal Party\’s coalition partner the Nationals are opposed to an emissions trading scheme.

Wednesday May 2, 6pm

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Wednesday May 2, 6pm)

WAITING FOR NATIVE TITLE

North Stradbroke Island is a popular tourist destination located 30 kilometres from Brisbane.

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It’s also home to the longest native title claim in southeast Queensland.

This week on Living Black, video journalist Emma Cook examines how difficult determinations in native title are and why this 12-year-old claim remains undetermined. Is it due to internal politics among the Quandamooka people, a lack of money to fund the claim or changes to the Native Title process?

Either way, native title applicant Ian Delaney is fed up, saying the Quandamooka people would have been better off buying the land themselves.

He’s not the only critic. Long time champion of indigenous affairs, Fred Chaney, has quit his position on the Native Title Tribunal. He tells Emma Cook there are serious flaws with the process as it currently operates. He thinks governments need to show more political imagination and try to settle disputes out of court. By quitting his post, he hopes to rekindle the debate on whether native title should be decided largely by Federal courts.

MESSAGE STICKS

For many indigenous filmmakers, screening their work at the Message Sticks film festival is seen as the pinnacle of their career. Living Black video journalist Jacinta Isaacs gives viewers a taste of what’s to come when the festival screens at the Sydney Opera House from 4 – 6 May and travels to capital cities from July.

A highlight will be Crocodile Dreaming, a contemporary drama, inspired by the Ramingining people’s ancient dreaming story from northeast Arnhem Land. Director Darlene Johnson was given permission by the ‘jungaiys’ (caretakers of the ceremonial business) to film a sacred dance as part of the ‘telling’.

She says of the experience: “I realized I was dealing with something really primordial, sacred, secret, spiritual and for me as an Indigenous person it just opened up and gave me access to this whole other world of story and character that was really exciting and unknown.”

The festival is a chance for emerging filmmakers to showcase their work in the ‘Bit of Black Business’ short film section, and for established talent like Ivan Sen, Julie Nimmo and Warwick Thornton to reveal their latest films.

Festival co-curator Rachel Perkins says “Message Sticks film festival is really about opening a world to people that they haven’t experienced before.”

Ehud Olmert Interview

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Ehud Olmert Interview)

MARK DAVIS: Mr Olmert, thanks very much for joining us.

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Are you still canvassing the option of killing Yasser Arafat?

EHUD OLMERT, DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER OF ISRAEL: I don’t think that this was ever a matter of personal interest. What I said then was that no-one who is directly involved in orchestrating, sponsoring, inspiring and financing the killing of innocent Israelis should enjoy any immunity and Arafat included.

MARK DAVIS: But you did say that killing is one of those options. I mean, is expelling or killing him options being considered by the cabinet?

EHUD OLMERT: No, it’s not something that we are spending too much time about. In connection with the recent events of violence and of brutal terror against the Israelis in Jerusalem and in Haifa when this issue was raised, this was my answer.

MARK DAVIS: Well it’s clear that your government doesn’t want to deal with Yasser Arafat or any institutions that are under his control. If his health holds up, there’s every prospect that he will remain, effectively in control, for many years. Now if that’s the case, will you ultimately be forced to accept that reality or do you have a plan or option to end his influence?

EHUD OLMERT: I want to draw your attention to the fact that it’s not just Israel. It’s not that Israel has a particular interest in ignoring Yasser Arafat. The President of the United States, the United States of America, many other countries share the same opinion that Yasser Arafat is an obsticle to any peace process in the future.

MARK DAVIS: But have you considered that politically you appear to be actually bolstering Yasser Arafat? Every time that someone predicts that Yasser Arafat is on the verge of becoming irrelevant there’s a threat from Israel and people tend to rally to him, even his critics. He’s never looked stronger than he is now in the last three years.

EHUD OLMERT: I’m familiar with this argument. Every time someone wants to tease Israel, he uses damned if I’m right and damned if I’m wrong- it doesn’t matter what we do. If we are against Yasser Arafat we are wrong because we are, in a way, promoting him. We are not fighting against Yasser Arafat then why not talk with Yasser Arafat? If someone wants to criticise Israel, every argument holds but we are sick and tired of having to collect the pieces of bodies from the ground of our streets, of our restaurants, of our coffee shops when they are torn apart from the homicide killers of the Palestinian organisations that are inspired and financed and supported by Yasser Arafat.

MARK DAVIS: I suppose the point is sir, are you leaving any room for any Palestinian opposition to Yasser Arafat? I mean, what Palestinian individual or group would challenge him today without being seen as a traitor or indeed an ally or a front for Israel?

EHUD OLMERT: Look, any Palestinian who wants to challenge Yasser Arafat is certainly welcome to do it and I don’t think that anything that we do stands in its way, or interferes in this respect. I think that unfortunately until very recently, the effective control of Yasser Arafat and all the security organisations of the Palestinian community made it very difficult for anyone to challenge him.

MARK DAVIS: Alright, I’ll move away from the leadership question. It’s been a difficult week for your government. Amnesty International has branded your actions in Raifa as war crimes. Kofi Annan has also been extremely critical. Does this type of international criticism carry any weight with you?

EHUD OLMERT: Look, we are always very upset when we hear these comments. If there indeed is any wrong that we are doing, anything that we shouldn’t do, then we are very sad about it because this is not what characterises our society and not our values. But at the same time, no-one can ignore the hypocrisy and the double standards of some of these organisations. Unfortunately sometimes the Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr Annan, seems to describe to this hypocrisy and double standards and it’s regrettable because we are trying, of course, to establish the best possible cooperation with Secretary Annan.

MARK DAVIS: There doesn’t seem to be the best possible cooperation trying to be established between yourselves and the Palestinian Authority though. In fact, both the Palestinian and Israeli leadership seem at a total impasse at the moment. But are the Palestinians and Israelis charting some path forward, and most notably in the recently announced Swiss agreement. Do you see any value in that plan that was recently put forward?

EHUD OLMERT: We have reached the impasse for the simple reason that the Palestinians don’t have a leadership that is going to be accountable and which is going to be democratic and which is prepared to fight against terror. And people like us, and like the Americans, and I believe like the Australians and like many in other parts of the world, are just not prepared to tolerate these phenomenon of terror any further. In any event these new private initiative of few Israeli members is, you know, is interesting exercise in total political futility. I think these very extreme left wing groups are frustrated that they can’t – that they don’t have any real genuine influence on Israeli politics because they were entirely out of power on the very far left of the political arena.

MARK DAVIS: Most peace plans that have given any chance for success have revolve around the same fundamentals of two states, essentially the 67 borders and the division of Jerusalem. Do you accept those fundamentals?

EHUD OLMERT: Any plans that had a chance of receiving the Palestinian support were based on these fundamentals, but they are totally unacceptable to us. Jerusalem will never be divided. Everyone who suggests that the city will be divided in my mind is an enemy of peace. If we are talking about religious rights and religious freedom, obviously, without any question, every person, Christian, Muslims, or a Jew, will be entertaining freedom of practice and religion in every part of Jerusalem. But political control for the Palestinians on the most important, the most sacred city in the whole world for the Jewish people, on what basis? What basis? What right do Yasser Arafat – does Yasser Arafat have to have control over the temple mound? The most sacred place of the Jewish people in the last 3,000 years? God forbid it will never happen and everyone that suggests it, suggests a prescription for endless wars instead of peace. It will not happen.

MARK DAVIS: What settlement, what basic settlement do you have to offer that would be acceptable to the Palestinian people, or is there – again, is there no way out of this?

EHUD OLMERT: First of all, listen, I’m not here to negotiate with the Palestinians through the good services of the Australian television, which I have enormous respect for. We’ll do it directly with the Palestinians based on the principles that were set forth in the road map which are acceptable to our government if and when conditions will allow us to negotiate in a serious manner. I don’t think that we have to do it in another way, and I am the Vice-President of the state of Israel and I’m not negotiating on television.

MARK DAVIS: Ehud Olmert thanks very much for your time. We’ll have to leave it there we’re about to lose our satellite. Thank you for joining us.

EHUD OLMERT: Thank you.

Urumqi ‘under control’ after riots

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Urumqi ‘under control’ after riots)

Authorities say the restive Chinese city of Urumqi is “under control” following riots, as mobs wielding makeshift weapons roam despite a massive security presence.

上海性息

President Hu Jintao abandoned a Group of Eight summit in Italy, in what observers said was an unprecedented move, to tackle one of China’s worst spikes in ethnic tensions in decades.

In Urumqi, the capital of the remote northwest Xinjiang region where 156 people died in unrest on Sunday, army helicopters circled overhead as thousands of soldiers and riot police filled the city shouting out “protect the people”.

“We support this,” said a 45-year-old Han Chinese as he watched the troops roll by in trucks.

“But they should have got here sooner. It took them three days to do this. Why so long?”

After authorities blamed Muslim Uighurs for Sunday’s unrest that also left more than 1,000 people injured, Han Chinese took to the streets Tuesday with shovels, meat cleavers and other makeshift weapons vowing to defend themselves.

After a night-time curfew was declared on Tuesday, Chinese authorities appeared determined to show they were able to maintain order.

Sporadic standoffs, clashes

Thousands of riot police wearing helmets and carrying shields lined up on a main road in Urumqi dividing the city centre from a Uighur district, with columns of soldiers behind them.

The security build-up had an impact with fewer people wielding weapons taking to the streets, and Urumqi mayor Jerla Isamudin told reporters in the late afternoon that the situation in the city was “under control”.

He also warned that anyone found guilty of murder in connection to the unrest would be given the death penalty.

Official news agency Xinhua said late Wednesday that the city “appeared to be calm” but added “sporadic standoffs and clashes were still reported”.

Tensions remained high, with some Han Chinese and Uighurs continuing to arm themselves with sticks, poles, knives and other weapons, leading to confrontations and violence, according to AFP reporters.

In one of two attacks witnessed by AFP reporters, about 20 Han Chinese men armed with wooden bats attacked a Uighur man in central Urumqi.

The beating stopped after about one minute when security forces moved in to disperse the mob, the AFP reporter said, while a local Han Chinese woman said the victim was a Uighur man.

Police cordons in place

The extent of the man’s injuries was unclear, as he was quickly taken away.

In the second incident, a group of Han Chinese saw three Uighurs at an intersection and chased them.

Two of the Uighurs escaped, but a third was caught by some of the crowd and was assaulted for around 30 seconds, before police took him away. AFP reporters said he had blood on his face after the beating.

In another incident, about 200 Uighurs armed with sticks, pipes and rocks began protesting directly in front of a police cordon that was dividing their neighbourhood from a Han-populated area, an AFP reporter said.

The crowd of Uighurs grew after a helicopter dropped leaflets blaming Sunday’s unrest on exiled Uighur leader Rebiya Kadeer, but they also claimed police had overnight allowed Han Chinese to freely attack Muslim areas.

In a BBC interview on Wednesday, Kadeer blamed Chinese policies for the violent unrest and claimed the death toll from riots was “much higher” than the 156 stated by Beijing.

Bodies of dead identified

Xinhua late Wednesday reported government sources as saying they had evidence the riot was “instigated and masterminded” by Kadeer, citing “recordings of calls” which referred to unrest ahead of the rioting.

China’s state media said Wednesday over 100 people “killed by rioters” in the initial violence had been identified, providing the first partial breakdown of the death toll.

Highlighting the severity of the crisis, the government announced President Hu had cut short his trip to Italy for the G8 summit.

“I have never seen a Chinese president shorten a trip abroad before… there is clear concern,” said Jean-Pierre Cabestan, professor of political science at Hong Kong Baptist University.

Xinjiang’s eight million Uighurs make up nearly half the population of the region, a vast area of deserts and mountains rich in natural resources that borders Central Asia.

The Turkic-speaking people have long complained of repression and discrimination under Chinese rule, but Beijing insists it has brought economic prosperity to the region.