30.9.13

Argélia: Primeiro Conselho de Ministros em 9 meses

Le président algérien Abdelaziz Bouteflika a présidé, dimanche 29 septembre, son premier Conseil des ministres de l'année avec un gouvernement tout juste remanié, le 11 septembre. Selon l'agence de presse APS, au cours de cette réunion, sept projets de textes législatifs ont été examinés et approuvés, dont le projet de Loi des Finances pour l'année 2014. Les autres projets examinés portaient, entre autres, sur le pénal, la lutte contre la contrebande, une loi minière, une autre relative aux activités et au marché du livre et celui attendu sur l’activité audiovisuelle. Selon l'APS le Conseil des ministres a aussi examiné et approuvé quatre projets de décrets présidentiels portant approbation de contrats et d’avenants pour la recherche et l’exploitation d’hydrocarbures. Abdelaziz Bouteflika s'est également exprimé à la télévision nationale où il a insisté sur "la nécessité impérieuse pour toutes les institutions de la République, notamment le gouvernement, d'être en permanence à l'écoute de la société et de développer les canaux appropriés de dialogue et de concertation avec l'ensemble de ses composantes". Ajoutant qu'"il nous incombe donc de redoubler d'efforts pour léguer à nos enfants un pays économiquement prospère et résolument tourné vers l'avenir". "Cette mission requiert obligatoirement une administration efficace et transparente basée sur un service public moderne et de qualité, débarrassée des nuisances de la bureaucratie", a-t-il relevé, ajoutant que le citoyen devait "pouvoir compter sur l'agent public et lui faire confiance". Des déclarations qui font écho aux nombreuses dénonciations dans la presse sur des affaires de corruption qui impliqueraient de très hautes personnalités. "Du travail, de l'engagement et de l'abnégation" Si le chef de l'État a aussi abordé la prochaine échéance électorale, la présidentielle en avril, il n'a en revanche rien dit de ses intentions. Il a appelé son nouveau gouvernement à prendre "d'ores et déjà toutes les mesures et dispositions nécessaires afin de permettre (au) pays d'aborder, dans les meilleures conditions, les prochaines échéances politiques". "Notre ambition est grande, mais elle est à la mesure de l'Algérie et des aspirations de ses enfants", a-t-il ajouté, précisant qu'il attend de chacun de ses ministres "du travail, de l'engagement et de l'abnégation". Abdelaziz, au pouvoir depuis 14 ans, était absent de la scène politique algérienne depuis le 27 avril, date à laquelle il a été hospitalisé d'urgence à la suite d'un AVC. Après trois mois de soins à Paris, il est rentré le 16 juillet en Algérie où il est revenu petit à petit sur la scène politique. Le dernier Conseil des ministres s'était tenu en décembre 2012, la constitution algérienne stipulant qu'il ne peut se tenir en l'absence du président. Jeuneafrique.com/AFP

Síria: A denúncia do terrorismo internacional

UNITED NATIONS, Sept 30 (Reuters) - Syria's foreign minister on Monday compared what he described as an invasion of foreign terrorists across his country to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States, remarks that Washington dismissed as offensive and disingenuous. In a speech to the annual meeting of the U.N. General Assembly in New York, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem also said that "terrorists from more than 83 countries are engaged in the killing of our people and our army under the appeal of global Takfiri jihad." "There is no civil war in Syria, but it is a war against terror that recognizes no values, nor justice, nor equality, and disregards any rights or laws," Moualem said. The United Nations says more than 100,000 people have been killed in Syria's 2-1/2 year conflict. It began in March 2011 when the government tried to crush pro-democracy protests and eventually became a full-scale war. Now more than half of Syria's 20 million people need aid. "The people of New York have witnessed the devastations of terrorism, and were burned with the fire of extremism and bloodshed, the same way we are suffering now in Syria," Moualem said, referring to the Sept. 11 attacks that brought down the World Trade Center and damaged the Pentagon. "How can some countries, hit by the same terrorism we are suffering now in Syria, claim to fight terrorism in all parts of the world, while supporting it in my country?" he said. The U.S. mission to the United Nations responded angrily, saying Moualem's comment was "as disingenuous as it is offensive," adding that his statements "have no credibility." "The fact that the Syrian regime has shelled schools and hospitals and used chemical weapons on its own people demonstrates that it has adopted the very terrorist tactics that it today decried," said Erin Pelton, spokeswoman for the U.S. mission. Assad's government accuses Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Britain, France and the United States of arming, financing and training rebel forces in Syria. JIHADISTS IN SYRIA Moualem dismissed the idea that there are moderate rebels in Syria, which Western nations say are the ones they intend to support. "The claims about the existence of moderate militants and extremist militants have become a bad joke," he told the 193-nation assembly. "Terrorism means only terrorism. It cannot be classified as moderate terrorism and extremist terrorism." Moualem also referred to video footage on the Internet earlier this year of one rebel fighter eating what appeared to be the heart of a government soldier. "The scenes of murder, manslaughter and eating human hearts were shown on TV screens, but did not touch blind consciences," he said. "There are innocent civilians whose heads are put on the grill just because they violate the extremist ideology and deviant views of al Qaeda. "In Syria ... there are murderers who dismember human bodies into pieces while still alive and send their limbs to their families, just because those citizens are defending a unified and secular Syria," Moualem said. Earlier this month U.N. human rights investigators said hard-line Syrian rebels and foreign fighters invoking jihad, or holy war, have stepped up killings, executions and other abuses in northern Syria since July. Last week the U.N. Security Council achieved a rare moment of unity on the Syrian war by passing a resolution demanding the elimination of Syria's chemical arsenal by mid-2014. Assad's ally Russia supported the resolution, which was based on a U.S.-Russian plan agreed upon in Geneva. Moualem said the Syrian government is committed to fulfilling its obligations after having acceded to the Chemical Weapons Convention that bans the use of such weapons. But he repeated the government's position that it is the rebels who have been using poison gas, not forces loyal to Assad. "Terrorists, who used poisonous gases in my country, have received chemical agents from regional and Western countries that are well known to all of us," he said. The United Nations has received reports of at least 14 chemical attacks in Syria. The most recent was an Aug. 21 sarin gas attack that the United States says killed more than 1,400 people, many of them children. Assad's government and the rebels blame each other for the Aug. 21 attack, which took place in a Damascus suburb. U.N. investigators did not assign blame but Western governments say a recent U.N. report on that incident suggests government-allied forces were responsible. (Reporting by Louis Charbonneau; Editing by Claudia Parsons)

Tunísia: O Ennadha recua

TUNIS — Tunisia’s governing Islamist party, Ennahda, thrust into power by the Arab Spring, has agreed to step down after months of political wrangling with a hard-bargaining opposition. In three weeks, the Ennahda-led government is to hand over power to an independent caretaker government that will lead the country through elections in the spring. The deal comes as part of negotiations to restart Tunisia’s democratic transition after secular opposition groups, protesting the assassinations of two of their politicians, stalled work on a new constitution and an election law this summer. The two sides will enter discussions this week mediated by the Tunisian General Labor Union, the nation’s largest. Its deputy secretary general, Bouali Mbarki, announced Ennahda’s acceptance of the plan on Saturday. The move comes less than three months after the Islamist government of President Mohamed Morsi of Egypt, also elected during the Arab Spring uprisings, was ousted by the military. Ennahda officials have repeatedly made statements in recent weeks signaling the party’s readiness to resign as a way to break the political impasse. The opposition, and the union, have until now pressed for more concrete action. The union has scheduled three weeks for talks on a new government. During that time, the National Constituent Assembly, the body in charge of writing Tunisia’s new constitution, is expected to ratify it and confirm appointments to the election commission, resuming work after a two-month hiatus. After that, Ennahda’s coalition government will resign. The assembly, where Ennahda holds the largest bloc of seats, will remain in place to serve as a check on the new government. Ennahda decided to step down despite resistance from some of its members, saying Tunisia’s transition to democracy, which began after the president was toppled nearly two years ago, can succeed only with full political consensus. Party members have criticized their leaders as having given away too much, Rafik Abdessalam, the former foreign minister, said at a news conference on Monday. “It is being described as the party of concessions,” he said. “We are not ashamed of these concessions because they are needed by Tunisia and to secure our democratic experience so that Tunisia can reach a safe shore.” In fact, the country is so polarized, and opposition from leftist and secular parties, including the labor union, has been so dogged, that Ennahda leaders acknowledge that they are better off having a neutral government that is accepted by all sides to run the elections. Ennahda was the largest winner in elections in October 2011, promising a model government that would blend Islamist principles with pluralism. But it has since lost popularity amid economic decline and a growing threat from terrorism. Tunisia has avoided the open violence of Egypt and Libya in its democratic transition since it began the Arab Spring with a popular uprising against President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali in 2011. Opposition parties have run a campaign of walkouts, sit-ins and evening rallies since the two assassinations to force the government to resign. Ennahda countered with its own rallies, busing in supporters for speeches, music and fireworks. With neither side strong enough to defeat the other, the Islamists and their opponents have ended up coming to the negotiating table. Yet Ennahda’s nearly two-year journey in government has been one of steady concessions and backing down. And it has been a sharp lesson for the Islamists: their party has been most weakened by extremist Islamists linked to Al Qaeda. Since the assassination of a prominent leftist politician, Chokri Belaid, in February, which brought accusations that it was soft or even in cahoots with Islamist terrorists, Ennahda has steadily been on the retreat. After the assassination, Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali resigned, saying the government had “disappointed” Tunisians with squabbling instead of leadership. Mr. Jebali was the first to suggest handing power to a government of technocrats. Ennahda opted for a reshuffle but appointed independent nonparty figures to critical posts, including the Interior and Justice Ministries. Then, in July, another opposition politician, Mohamed Brahmi, was assassinated in broad daylight in front of his family, bringing another wave of protests against the Ennahda government, even though the government this time quickly identified the culprits as an extremist Islamic cell linked to Al Qaeda, and blamed it for the Belaid assassination as well. Finally, the ouster of Mr. Morsi — allied with the Muslim Brotherhood — encouraged the Tunisian opposition to try to oust the government. Ennahda responded with further concessions, dropping all of its outstanding constitutional demands, including an article stating that Islam was the religion of the state and another that would have prevented a key rival, former Prime Minister Beji Caid Essebsi, from running for president. Working out the details of the agreement remains difficult. Distrust runs high, and as the end of the transition period nears, the political parties have entered a hard-nosed power struggle. “From 2011 we moved to another agenda, from the demands for a transitional democracy to a real struggle for power,” said Abdel Basset Ben Hassen, head of the Arab Institute for Human Rights. “Because of the change we have this tension and a lot of frustration.” The New York Times A version of this article appears in print on September 29, 2013, on page A8 of the New York edition with the headline: Islamist Party in Tunisia to Step Down.

Nigéria: Porquê tanta carnificina?

POTISKUM, Nigeria Suspected Islamic extremists attacked an agricultural college in the dead of night, gunning down dozens of students as they slept in dormitories and torching classrooms, the school's provost said, reporting the latest violence in northeastern Nigeria's ongoing Islamic uprising. As many as 50 students may have been killed in the assault that began at about 1 a.m. Sunday in rural Gujba, Provost Molima Idi Mato of Yobe State College of Agriculture, told The Associated Press. "They attacked our students while they were sleeping in their hostels, they opened fire at them," he said. He said he could not give an exact death toll as security forces still are recovering bodies of students mostly aged between 18 and 22. The Nigerian military has collected 42 bodies and transported 18 wounded students to Damaturu Specialist Hospital, 25 miles north, said a military intelligence official, who insisted on anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the press. The extremists rode into the college in two double-cabin pickup all-terrain vehicles and on motorcycles, some dressed in Nigerian military camouflage uniforms, a surviving student, Ibrahim Mohammed, told the AP. He said they appeared to know the layout of the college, attacking the four male hostels but avoiding the one hostel reserved for women. "We ran into the bush, nobody is left in the school now," Mohammed said. Almost all those killed were Muslims, as is the college's student body, said Adamu Usman, a survivor from Gujba who was helping the wounded at the hospital. Nigeria workers find 143 civilian bodies in region plagued by Islamic extremists Islamic militants drive 19,000 rice farmers off land in northeast Nigeria Nigerian President vows to rein in Boko Haram threat Nigeria opens secret prison for Islamist militant group Boko Haram Wailing relatives gathered outside the hospital morgue, where rescue workers laid out bloody bodies in an orderly row on the lawn for family members to identify their loved ones. One body had its fists clenched to the chest in a protective gesture. Another had hands clasped under the chin, as if in prayer. A third had arms raised in surrender. Provost Idi Mato confirmed the school's other 1,000 enrolled students have fled the college. CBS News

28.9.13

Mali: Atentado suicida em Tombouctou

Un camp de l'armée malienne à Tombouctou (nord-ouest du Mali) a été visé samedi par un attentat suicide à la voiture piégée, qui a provoqué la mort des deux kamikazes et fait des blessés, ont indiqué à l'AFP des sources militaires. "Deux kamikazes à bord d'une voiture ont explosé devant notre camp militaire, ils sont tous morts. Il y a des civils blessés, mais je ne connais pas le nombre", a dit un militaire malien joint à l'intérieur du camp. L'attaque à la voiture piégée a été confirmée par un militaire membre de la force de l'ONU, la Minusma, présent à Tombouctou. Selon lui, il y a eu deux kamikazes tués "et au moins deux blessés civils". Jeune Afrique

Bissau: Palavras de Nhamadjo na ONU

We just celebrated, two days ago, the 40th anniversary of our national independence, and this is a good time for us to reaffirm, to your Excellencies, the following: during the entire period of armed struggle for national liberation, the people that I represent believed in the United Nations and in International Law, and my country today reiterates, maintains, and further reinforces this old belief. We achieved national independence in 1973. Indeed it was not given to us by anybody. But it became possible only as a result of the international solidarity of some and, ultimately, the recognition of all. To all, without exception, I wish, on behalf of Guinea-Bissau, to express our feeling of eternal gratitude, to declare our firm desire to strengthen longstanding ties of friendship, and to affirm our willingness, despite all that has transpired, to rebuild the foundations of solidarity that united our peoples in the past. Mr. President Mr. Secretary-General The person that addresses you at this time has risen to this podium to ask for your patience and understanding, and hopes for your solidarity. I am one who believes that expressions of generosity are not at all inconsistent with the cold rationality of relations among sovereign States. I am the Transitional President of the Republic of Guinea-Bissau and this title, as your Excellencies are well aware, indicates something that is particular and exceptional. Indeed the political and military events of April 12, 2012, created a new political environment in my country. A military coup had ousted the Interim President of the Republic and a self-suspended Prime Minister who had launched an inconclusive campaign to run for the Presidency. Faced with this situation, we then wondered: What are we to do? Fortunately, the best option available at the time, in our opinion, ultimately prevailed. We were able to avoid political mishaps that, had they taken hold, could have thrown the country into a political and military tailspin with consequences that would have been unpredictable and, certainly, much graver than what we nonetheless had to face and, in some ways, continue to face. 4 Therefore we had to circumscribe the dynamics of the military coup, control its political effects, limit its institutional reach, and, as if it were not enough, we had to deal with two opposing positions that emerged both internally and abroad. One of them was very detrimental to the peaceful return to constitutional normality in my country; but the other was much more realistic and thus more promising for the gradual reestablishment of constitutional order. We had to deal with the first so-called position, which was both curious and dramatic. This position was taken by people who preferred the worst possible situation for Guinea-Bissau. And do your Excellencies know why? The answer is this: they betted on the degradation of the political situation in my country in order to justify their theses, confirm their predictions, operationalize their political concepts of how to resolve the crisis in Guinea-Bissau. Indeed they made every attempt to apply the formula that dictated that" the worse for Guinea-Bissau, the better." Yes, the better indeed but only to serve their own interests. With such a radical position, they really managed to touch on the deepest sensibilities of a people that is humble but refuses to be humiliated. We are a true democracy, notwithstanding all our flaws, the violations of the democratic purpose of the State, and so many detours. We are the first to recognize this. But we must not forget that we are, first, a State born out of" centuries of pain and hope," and of a hard and victorious struggle for national independence, which has a strong influence on the determination of the political values to be defended. In order to enable the second option on the table to go forward, we were able to rely on the realism and prompt solidarity of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). With the important support of the United Nations Security Council, ECOWAS became solely responsible for managing the agreed Transition Period, and created a reduced stabilization military mission that became known as ECOMIB. On the political and institutional level, the parliament elected by the people of Guineas Bissau - our People' s National Assembly - remained standing and thus was able to provide the Political Transition with a legitimate and legitimizing institutional basis, In fact, the Constitution of the Republic had never been suspended. Mr. President Mr. Secretary-General Ladies and gentlemen That is the origin of the Transitional President of the Republic. It did not come from a military coup. It came, rather, from an elected Parliament and, therefore, from a political and institutional process. This makes all the difference. I combined the position of Member of Parliament, elected to the position four times in a row, as well as that of First Vice-President of that body of sovereignty - in other words, all modesty aside, I am a democrat with a mature conviction, and never ran a coup d' etat nor ordered any such actions. Indeed, with the inauguration of the Transitional President of the Republic, the Political Transition process per se began. After some time, Parliament approved the revised Transition Pact and corresponding Political Agreement, and, later on, the Program and General Budget for the State submitted by a Government with a broad political base, which I, as Transitional President of the Republic, appointed and installed by Presidential Decree. With these steps, the Political Transition truly took off. I have signed a Presidential Decree setting November 24th as the date for legislative and presidential elections. What remains - which is not little - is to ensure the availability of funds to carry out an effective, transparent, and unquestionable electoral process. To this end, we must create reliable voter registries, which can only be accomplished through an accurate census or voter registration process. This is where the Political Transition stands in Guinea-Bissau. 6 Ladies and gentlemen, Guinea-Bissau is the victim of two dramatically interlinked evils: poverty and political instability. In fact, in a society such as that of my country, poverty creates the propensity for political instability. In turn, political instability impacts the economic order, reduces the rate of growth and thus increases poverty rates. The challenge ahead of us consists precisely of escaping these two traps - the poverty trap and the political instability trap. Overcoming this challenge obviously goes well beyond the goals for this exceptional period of Political Transition. Therefore I will not go into further details in this regard. In light of this enormous economic and political liability, which is yet to be resolved, achieving the Millennium Development Goals within the established timeframe is truly beyond our means, at least for the foreseeable future. But this recognition does not mean that the government, civil society and GuineaBissau' s bilateral and multilateral development partners in general - including the specialized UN agencies - have given up on the effort. Much to the contrary. In Education, Health, Gender Equality policies, fight against Poverty, Environmental policies for Sustainable Development, as well as other areas, our country has made progress, though moderate and below satisfactory levels. As to following up on the recommendations emerging from the" Rio+20 Summit - The Future We Want," Guinea-Bissau will make every effort to carry out the commitments undertaken. We hope that the more developed countries, our partners, do their part in the fight against poverty, which is one of the greatest scourges that afflict states such as Guinea-Bissau, which are fragile and therefore very vulnerable, and are still suffering the grave consequences of armed conflict. 7 Guinea-Bissau supports the establishment of the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development on September 24, 2013, which replaces the Commission on Sustainable Development and will develop Post-2015 International Development initiatives. As a country with islands, Guinea-Bissau congratulates the Secretary-General of the United Nations and his initiative to convene the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States, in Samoa, in September 2014. Ladies and gentlemen I take this opportunity to thank the United Nations and particularly Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon for the attention that he has dedicated to my country and for appointing former President of Timor-Leste Jose Ramos Horta as his Special Representative to Guinea-Bissau. Mr. Ramos Horta has made excellent contributions to the political normalization of GuineaBissau. The State of Guinea-Bissau has never been and is not aloof of the evolution of the international political environment, and has never been indifferent to the hopes and suffering of the peoples of the world. In this regard, we are deeply solidary with our ECOWAS brothers in Africa. We wish great successes to the people of Mali, which has just demonstrated their great level of maturity, going to the polls with civic pride in their recent general elections, which marked the end of the period of Political Transition and, at the same time, sent a strong signal of national reconciliation and the beginning of their effort to rebuild a country destroyed by terrorist acts and unacceptable irredentism. We take this opportunity to congratulate France for their crucial role in safeguarding the integrity of the Malian territory, which is the basis of the people of Mali' s national sovereignty. 8 We repudiate the terrorist attacks that have taken place in Nigeria and Kenya, which have been spurred by radicalism and made so many victims in the name of religious intolerance. We hereby offer our full solidarity to our sister nations of Nigeria and Kenya, Presidents Goodluck Jonathan and Uhuru Kenyatta, their Governments and the families of the victims. We hope that our neighboring Republic of Guinea may complete its electoral process successfully and thus open a path to a true national reconciliation in our sister nation. In Egypt and in ravaged Syria, we hope that dialogue and diplomacy prevail over force, so that the sacrifice of so many human lives may be avoided. In the Middle East, we continue to defend the Palestinian cause with as much conviction as ever. It is crucial for the Palestinian people, in particular, and for the political stability of and peace-building in the Arab world in general that the negotiations between the Palestinian Authority and the State of Israel advance toward the creation of a sovereign Palestinian State, in accordance with the relevant Resolutions of the United Nations. In Europe, a special word of recognition to France, which has never abandoned us and continues very active in seeking better ways to help Guinea-Bissau overcome its political crisis. And to the Kingdom of Spain, whose Ambassador among us has been instrumental in the efforts toward political normalization. Our friend Timor-Leste, a small country within the Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries (CPLP) has shown an admirable spirit of cooperation with my country, thus demonstrating that friends do come through during the most difficult moments. The Timorese authorities realized something very simple: supporting an institutional process of political normalization is not the same as supporting a coup d' etat. Much to the contrary. Thank you, President Matan Ruak, thank you very much Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao. 9 Thank you very much, President Armando Guebuza, current President of the CPLP, for your fair assessment of the political process in my country, for your encouragement and appeal to the international community to provide financial support for the general elections in my country. I also take this opportunity to congratulate Murade Murargy, a Mozambican national who currently serves as Executive Secretary of the CPLP, for his dedication to the political normalization process in my country. With the Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries, we hope one day - and may this day come soon - to see the full normalization of our relations, which is in the interest of all our peoples and sovereign States. With respect to Cuba, we call, as we have always called, for the end of the two-decade embargo, the advancement of the reforms that are underway in that friendly nation, with which we have so many and so deep ties of friendship and solidarity. With respect to Asia, we wish to express our profound gratitude to the People' s Republic of China for the extent and intensity of their cooperation with my country. The fruits of this cooperation - particularly in the construction of key public buildings - will enter history as indelible symbols of a friendship that dates back to our armed struggle for national liberation. I express the profound gratitude of the people of Guinea-Bissau to His Excellency Mr. Alassane Ouatarra, President of the Republic of Cote d' Ivoire and current President of ECOWAS, and to His Excellency Mr. Goodluck Jonathan, President of the Federative Republic of Nigeria and President of the Contact Group on Guinea-Bissau, as well as to all the Heads of State and Heads of Government of the member countries of ECOWAS. -- Parte do discurso de Manuel Serifo Nhamadjo na Assembleia-Geral da ONU. Nem uma só palavra sobre Portugal, Angola e Cabo Verde. Mas agradecimentos à França e à CEDEAO.

"O estranho universo paralelo da Alemanha"

Martin Wolf, do Financial Times 27/09/13 O notável resultado eleitoral de Angela Merkel confirma a chanceler alemã como figura política dominante na Alemanha e na Europa. Parte-se do princípio que terá a zona euro que pretende: uma Alemanha em ponto grande. O notável resultado eleitoral de Angela Merkel confirma a chanceler alemã como figura política dominante na Alemanha e na Europa. Parte-se do princípio que terá a zona euro que pretende: uma Alemanha em ponto grande. As palavras de Wolfgang Schäuble, ministro das Finanças alemão, são elucidativas: os profetas da desgraça estavam errados e "o mundo deveria rejubilar com os sinais positivos que a economia da zona euro tem dado de forma quase contínua nos últimos tempos". Se a recessão e o desemprego em massa são sinais de sucesso, então, o ajustamento na zona euro é uma grande vitória. Schäuble acusa os críticos de viverem num "universo paralelo". Pessoalmente prefiro isso a viver no seu universo. Em que ponto está a zona euro? A taxa de desemprego é de 12%. O PIB no segundo trimestre ficou 3% abaixo do pico anterior à crise e 13% abaixo da tendência anterior à crise. Os valores do PIB no último trimestre foram inferiores ao pico registado antes da crise: menos 7,5% em Espanha, 7,6% em Portugal, 8,4% na Irlanda, 8,8% em Itália e 23,4% na Grécia. A retoma é fraca em todos estes países e a taxa de desemprego preocupante: 12% em Itália, 13,8% na Irlanda, 16,5% em Portugal, 26,3% em Espanha e 27,9% na Grécia. Não fosse a emigração e estes números seriam ainda piores. O caso irlandês pode servir de alerta - voltou a ser competitivo e gere um excedente na balança de transacções correntes (BTC). Apesar disso, o PIB está estagnado há quatro anos. No terrível Verão de 2012, o Banco Central Europeu (BCE) prometeu fazer "o que fosse necessário" para salvar o euro. Pouco depois, anunciou a entrada em vigor do programa OMT, que consiste na compra de dívida pública dos países vulneráveis em mercado secundário por parte do BCE. Por um lado, serviu para acalmar os mercados, por outro, para a zona euro ganhar tempo. No entanto, não resolveu os problemas subjacentes. Que problemas são esses? Antes de mais, é preciso sair da actual confusão. Segundo, concluir as reformas necessárias a longo prazo. As actuais transferências orçamentais não são nem desejáveis nem exequíveis. Mais. São precisos melhores mecanismos de segurança para soberanos e bancos no longo prazo. Se a zona euro não deixar os estados membros recuperarem a saúde económica ao fim de um período de tempo razoável, tudo isto será puramente académico. É viável? Se a filosofia da Alemanha não mudar, "não". Como ficou claro no discurso de Schäuble, a procura não consta da análise. Ora, uma economia de grande dimensão com um excedente estrutural da BTC elevado não se limita a exportar produtos, também exporta falência e desemprego, em particular se o correspondente fluxo de capital for constituído por dívida de curto prazo. O facto de os novos desequilíbrios macroeconómicos não reconhecerem o papel da fraca procura interna na Alemanha é especialmente esclarecedor. O valor a partir do qual o excedente da BTC é motivo para preocupação é de 6% do PIB, independentemente da dimensão do país. A média alemã é precisamente de 5,9%. A zona euro está a tentar transformar-se numa Alemanha em ponto grande. O aumento da produtividade e a quebra na procura combinadas conduziu as economias vulneráveis ao equilíbrio externo. Entretanto, a Alemanha está a redireccionar os seus excedentes para fora da zona euro. A BTC da zona euro passou de uma situação deficitária para excedentária - 304 mil milhões de euros - entre o quarto trimestre de 2008 e o segundo trimestre de 2013. Embora isso ajude a resolver os problemas internos da zona euro, também exporta falência. A tentativa de exportar as suas dificuldades através de uma "política de empobrecimento do vizinho" é inconsistente com as obrigações da zona euro no âmbito do G20. Mas não só. Peca igualmente por duas razões. Primeiro, a zona euro é demasiado grande para que as exportações possam ser o motor do crescimento, como tem feito a Alemanha. Segundo, a moeda vai provavelmente valorizar ainda mais, esmagando novamente as economias menos competitivas. Pelo que pude perceber nada disto é relevante no universo de Schäuble. A zona euro poderia ser um sucesso não fosse esta filosofia. Vai sobreviver? Ninguém sabe. É assim que deve ser conduzido o projecto mais ambicioso da Europa? Não.

27.9.13

Bissau: Eleições já não serão este ano

Sete ministros representantes dos países da CPLP concordaram quarta-feira, em Nova York, que "tecnicamente já não será possível" a realização de eleições na Guiné-Bissau em 24 de novembro, disse o ministro dos Negócios Estrangeiros português, Rui Machete. A situação do país africano, que está sob um Governo de transição desde o golpe de Estado de 12 abril de 2012, dominou o almoço de trabalho dos ministros da Comunidade dos Países da Língua Portuguesa (CPLP), realizado quarta-feira em Nova York, à margem da 68ª sessão da Assembleia Geral das Nações Unidas. O chefe da diplomacia portuguesa explicou que o representante da Guiné-Bissau não esteve presente no almoço porque a organização "não reconhece, desde o princípio, legitimidade a este Governo". Segundo o calendário estabelecido com a Comunidade Econômica dos Estados da África Ocidental (CEDEAO), o país devia realizar eleições gerais em 24 de novembro e terminar com o periodo de transição em 31 de dezembro, mas os ministros reunidos concluiram que os prazos não serão cumpridos. Rui Machete disse que existe a preocupação de encontrar "soluções credíveis e exequíveis que permitam um regresso à estabilidade e evitem uma solução mais ou menos artificial ou um Governo fantoche". "Tivemos alguma hesitação entre a pressão que resulta de exigir que as eleições se realizem em 24 de novembro e o realismo de reconhecer que isso já não será possível", admitiu Machete. O chefe da diplomacia portuguesa disse acreditar que, "tecnicamente, não é possível, porque há problemas de recenseamento e de financiamento" e sublinhou que "há, sobretudo, um problema político." A CPLP é integrada por Angola, Brasil, Cabo Verde, Guiné-Bissau (suspensa da organização), Moçambique, Portugal e Timor-Leste. -- Angop

Bissau: Sob tutela da ONU?

O Movimento de Salvação Nacional de Guiné-Bissau (MSN/GB), é, como indica o nome um movimento que tem como único objectivo salvar a nossa terra. Não é um partido, não é uma organização, não é uma associação. O Abaixo assinado é um grito de Socorro do Povo Guineense. Assinando , juntas a tua voz para que possamos gritar alto,forte e de uma só voz: BASTA ! Excelentíssimo Senhor Secretario Geral das Nações Unidas, Sua Excelência Ban Ki-moon, As cidadãs e os cidadãos Guineenses abaixo assinados, com base no artigo 75° e 76° da Carta das Nações Unidas, vem por este meio requerer junto à Magna instância que V.Exa preside que o território de Guiné-Bissau seja colocado em regime de tutela internacional sob a autoridade das Nações Unidas. Conscientes de que é provavelmente a primeira vez na história do direito internacional que os cidadãos de um estado formulam um tal pedido, permita-nos indicar as razões que nos levaram à optar pelo presente requerimento, que consideramos ser o último recurso para salvar o nosso povo e recuperar a soberania perdida. Com a derrota nas matas da Guiné-Bissau do colonialismo português , nasce a esperança de uma nova vida para o Povo Guineense : educação, saúde, trabalho para todos num Estado independente A dignidade perdida com a colonização portuguesa seria assim reconquistada. Mas a esperança de uma vida nova, não passou disso mesmo : uma esperança. Os ideais de Amílcar Cabral e daqueles combatentes que deram as suas vidas para uma Guiné-Bissau Independente foram traídos. -Traídos pelo partido único (PAIGC) que governou a Guiné-Bissau depois da Independência até às primeiras eleições multipartidárias em 1994. -Traídos pela classe politica guineense que tem vindo a servir-se sistematicamente do aparelho de estado para se enriquecer em vez de servirem o Povo Guineense. -Traído pelas forças armadas de Guiné-Bissau que se transformou num bando armado ao serviço do crime organizado, estando envolvido na pratica de varios crimes, tais como trafico de droga, contrabando de armas, assassinatos, raptos, torturas... Crimes cometidos com o objectivo de enriquecimento pessoal dos membros que formam o bando armado. Hoje em dia Guiné-Bissau é conhecido como sendo um narco-estado. As mais altas autoridades militares e civis do estado estão directa ou indirectamente envolvidos no tráfico de droga. A história recente da Guiné-Bissau pode-se resumir assim : eleições seguida de golpe estado ; golpe de estado seguida de eleições. Quarenta anos depois da Independéncia, Guiné-Bissau, de acordo com o relatório do desenvolvimento humano 2013 das Nações Unidas, encontra-se no 176° lugar do conjunto de 186 países. Todos os indicadores de desenvolvimento analisados são negativos . Na Guiné-Bissau, a esperança de vida à nascença é de 48,6 anos. O que se esconde atras destes dados, são tragédias pessoais, enorme desperdicio de vidas humanas que poderiam ter sido evitadas ; que podem e devem ser evitadas no futuro ! Parece-nos evidente concluir que a Guiné-Bissau, não tem forças internas capazes de mudar a situação política, económica e social do País. Essas forças internas são os principais responsáveis da situação dramatica em que o País se encontra. A única soluçao para quebrar o círculo vicioso em que Guiné-Bissau se encontra será através da tutela das Nações Unidas. Hoje em dia, não se pode considerar que Guiné-Bisssau seja um país soberano do ponto vista político,económico, militar ou jurídico. A soberania dolorosamente conquistada nas matas da Guiné-Bissau, foi perdida. Por essa razão e para impedir que inúmeras tragédias humanas se continuem a repetir, para impedir que o país continue a servir de base aos traficantes de drogas internacionais e nacionais, para que as crianças de Guiné-Bissau possam ter uma vida decente e um futuro digno, pedimos as Nações Unidas que a Guiné-Bissau seja colocado sob um regime internacional de tutela.

Confirmada condenação de Charles Taylor

Monrovia — Public reaction to the Special Court for Sierra Leone Appeals Chamber decision unanimously upholding the conviction of former Liberian President Charles Taylor on 11 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity, and affirming the 50- year sentence imposed by the court's Trial Chamber has been mixed in Monrovia. Some Liberians described the final decision as sad because it puts behind bars a former President of Liberia. "The final verdict is saddening for me as a Liberian; to see that my former president going to languish in jail for 50 years. I am very sad. ' "Today is a sad day for me. This is the first African president to go in jail for that long," said Joemah Y. Kollie, a resident of Monrovia. Christopher S. Doe another Liberian expressed disappointment over the verdict adding that the Taylor issue is a political one solely done to keep him out of Liberia. "My ex-president left my country with our present president knowing about it. And she is happy and going to show her supremacy." he said. Liberian gathered before television screens across the city watching the Judge of the Special Court as he read the verdict, though many did not expect any considerable difference from the previous verdict handed down by the court, they could not come to accept that the fact that a former president of Liberia could spend lifetime in jail in a foreign land and not for crimes committed in Liberia. "It is highly discouraging for the court to come with such verdict on our ex-president," said Darlington S. Wiles. Court's ruling On 26 April 2012, the Trial Chamber found Taylor guilty of aiding and abetting crimes committed by RUF and AFRC rebel forces against Sierra Leones civilian population over a five-year period, and of planning, with RUF Battlefield Commander Sam Bockarie, crimes committed by rebel forces during the January 1999 attack on Freetown. The Defense and the Prosecution had each appealed both judgment and sentence. The Appeals Chamber, consisting of Justice George Gelaga King (presiding), Justice Emmanuel Ayoola, Justice Renate Winter, Justice Jon Kamanda, Justice Shireen Avis Fisher and Alternate Judge Justice Philip Waki, found that the Trial Chamber had properly applied the standard of proof of beyond a reasonable doubt according to a release issued by the special court. The Judges also dismissed Defense challenges to findings of fact, saying that the findings were reasonable in light of the Trial Chamber's careful and cautious approach to the evaluation of the evidence. The Judges said the Trial Chamber had relied on a combination of direct, circumstantial and hearsay evidence in reaching its findings, and that none of its findings were based on uncorroborated hearsay evidence, said the court. The Trial Chamber also found that Mr. Taylor had supplied the rebels with arms and ammunition, military personnel, sustained operational support, encouragement and moral support, knowing that their strategy was to commit crimes against the civilian population. The Appeals Chamber concurred, saying that Mr. Taylor had a substantial effect on the rebels' capacity to implement its operational strategy and to carry out attacks on civilians. Allafrica.com

Por uma coligação de "árabes moderados"

For some geopolitical factors, interrelated interests and ethnic factors, Egypt and eastern Arab states have long been split between the so-called “Arab moderation camp” and the Iran-led “axis of objection and resistance.” Many of the Arab territorial matters, crises and even trans-border problems, including Palestine, Lebanon, waters, among others have, for a considerable time, been dealt with and viewed from two rivalling perspectives of the Arab moderation coalition and axis of resistance. This echoes the “adversarial” relationship that existed between the 1955 Baghdad Pact countries and the short-lived United Arab Republic. Such a “binary” structure has in fact brought more harm than benefit to the joint Arab efforts to handle their problems, causing them more divisions and enlarging their already-large tensions. But the whole situation has completely changed now and, therefore, there needs to be reconsideration or rebuilding of political coalitions in the Arab world to deal with the new developments and secure an influential position within the region. As politics means dealing with and responding to actualities, my thesis here is that the Arab moderation camp, comprising Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, the UAE and the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority, is now required to engage in a breakable coalition based this time on an action, not reaction, approach, with its traditional rival (axis of resistance) which is suffering from internal dilemmas and unprecedented external pressure threatening its existence. Axis of resistance shaking It is hard to say now that the ideologically-formed resistance camp, made up of Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and the Gaza-based Hamas, is not in a big trouble – if not on the verge of collapse – when most of its constituents are actually pleading for survival. The Arab moderation camp has long adopted the reaction approach, usually only moving if provoked by the objection camp Raed Omari The axis of resistance, which has long been viewed as an unbreakable chain, is now breaking with Syria’s Alawite regime of Bashar al-Assad. This is due the unrestrained civil war and the popularity of the Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah reaching single-digit level in the Arab world due to their participation in the ongoing Syrian struggle. Seemingly aware of its “abhorred,” or at least badly received, ideological attitude towards the Arab region and the unreliability of relying on internationally-detested regime and militia, Iran is now looking for a replacement within the Arab world, resorting to diplomacy this time. For some reason, I find it hard to see Iranian President Hassan Rowhani’s talk of diplomacy and outspoken Hezbollah’s chief Hassan Nasrallah toning down as inseparable from the new political scene in the region. Of course, the U.S. giving a chance to diplomacy and its military threats have had their effect on Iran’s and Hezbollah’s tactics. But, if that is to reveal something, it reveals the two sides’ realization of the new facts on the ground with their “moderate rival” regaining the upper hand in the region. Hamas is in trouble now as it is left unallied and at odds with Egypt’s new regime which is seemingly convinced of the involvement of members of the Islamist movement in the military attacks against the Egyptian army in Sinai. The sectarian regime of Iran no longer cares about Hamas. Reading Rowhani’s Washington Post op-ed, one finds no mention of the purely Sunni Palestine. Only Syria and Bahrain are mentioned. From camping to coalition Due to the undeniable decaying power of the axis of resistance, the Arab moderation camp is required to step in to fill the political vacuum left by its conventional rival. With Egypt back on board after Mohammad Mursi’s rule, during which the Arab world’s most populous country has suffered a state of “chaotic allegiances,” the Arab moderation camp can be said to be in a better condition now. But, more needs to be done. This, coupled with the undeniable world influence of Saudi Arabia and the dynamic diplomacy of Jordan and the UAE, can help immensely in building up a firm front to handle Arab affairs. The Arab moderation camp has long adopted the reaction approach, usually only moving if provoked by the objection camp. After more than ten years since its launch, the moderation camp has not yet succeeded in building up an unbreakable and lasting coalition though it has all the necessary components to be so. This is partly because tactics, and not higher strategy, is in most cases what govern the joint actions of Egypt, KSA, Jordan and the UAE. Cairo, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi and Amman need ivest in more political, economic, diplomatic and security cooperation to ultimately form a strong coalition for a more influential presence. They should benefit from their open diplomacy and excellent bonds with the U.S, Europe, China and even Russia. I don’t see myself exaggerating when I say that more reinforcement of the moderation camp, manifested in increasing already-existing cooperation and including other states, is an urgent matter nowadays, not only to become influential but actually to remain influential. In addition to Palestine, Arabs now have many causes to stand for, including Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Tunisia and the Nile. All of that requires systematic and relentless Arab action and the moderation camp seems to be the only cohesive force to jointly and collaboratively handle such matters. To face internal and external threats to the Arab region’s national security and to respond to Iran’s “bold” intrusion in Arabs’ affairs, Turkey’s “shy” attempts to secure a presence in the Arab world and Israel’s “arrogant” attitude, the Arab moderation camp requires a more active approach. Raed Omari, jornalista e analista político jordano, que escreve no The Jordan Times e colabora no Al Arabiya English.

Mukhtar Ali Zubeyr, líder da Al-Shabab

Al-Shabab, a terror group, which claimed the responsibility of attacking the Westgate centre mall in Nairobi, Kenya, on Saturday in which at least 68 people were killed and over 170 people were injured asserted that its terrorists shot people in retaliation for the deployment of Kenyan troops in Somalia. The group is headed by Sheikh Mukhtar Ali Zubeyr. Here are a few facts about Zubeyr: 1 Sheikh Mukhtar Ali Zubeyr is also known as Muktar Abdirahman 'Godane', Ahmed Abdi Godane, Ahmed Abdi Aw Mohammed, Mukhtar Abu Zubeyr and Muqtar Abdurahman Abu Zubeyr. He is the leader of Harakat Al-Shabab Mujahideen, which currently is the most prominent insurgent group in Somalia. He was born in in Hargeisa on July 10, 1977. He hails from the Isaaq tribe of north Somalia. 2 He has received training and fought in Afghanistan, is designated by the United States as a terrorist. He succeeded Sheikh Mukhtar Robow who had held the position for several months after Sheikh Adan Eyrow's death. 3 Ibrahim 'Al-Afghani' who is a key leader in Al-Shabab. He is a veteran of the Afghan Jihad. While in, Godane had worked for Al-Barakat, a Somali remittance company that had been linked to terrorism. Al-Afghani from the 'Arab sub-clan of the Isaaq clan family. 4 In 2006, Godane became the secretary general of the executive council of the Islamic Courts Union, an organisation which was then lead by Sharif Ahmed who is the former President of the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia. 5 In September 2009, Godane appeared in an Al-Shabab video where he offered his services to Bin Laden. The video appeared to be a response to a Bin Laden from March 2009 in which he urged the Somalis to overthrow the newly elected President of Somalia Sharif Ahmed. 6 In January 2010, Godane, speaking on behalf of Al-Shabab, released a statement reiterating his support for Al-Qaeda and stated that they had agreed to join the international jihad of Al-Qaeda. 7 Tensions within Al-Shabab: Godane and his close friend Ibrahim Haji Jama Mee'aad ( aka Ibrahim Al-Afghani) both rose to prominence within the terror group, i.e., Al-Shabab at the same time but, despite their close relationship, the two men had widely divergent views on what the future of the group should be. This resulted in tensions within the organisation and the alienation of many of Godane's oldest friends as it became apparent that his agenda was transnational. Niti.central.com

26.9.13

Obama, o Médio Oriente e o Norte de África

Let me take this opportunity to outline what has been U.S. policy towards the Middle East and North Africa, and what will be my policy during the remainder of my presidency. The United States of America is prepared to use all elements of our power, including military force, to secure our core interests in the region. We will confront external aggression against our allies and partners, as we did in the Gulf War. We will ensure the free flow of energy from the region to the world. Although America is steadily reducing our own dependence on imported oil, the world still depends on the region’s energy supply, and a severe disruption could destabilize the entire global economy. We will dismantle terrorist networks that threaten our people. Wherever possible, we will build the capacity of our partners, respect the sovereignty of nations, and work to address the root causes of terror. But when it’s necessary to defend the United States against terrorist attack, we will take direct action. And finally, we will not tolerate the development or use of weapons of mass destruction. Just as we consider the use of chemical weapons in Syria to be a threat to our own national security, we reject the development of nuclear weapons that could trigger a nuclear arms race in the region, and undermine the global nonproliferation regime. Now, to say that these are America’s core interests is not to say that they are our only interests. We deeply believe it is in our interests to see a Middle East and North Africa that is peaceful and prosperous, and will continue to promote democracy and human rights and open markets, because we believe these practices achieve peace and prosperity. But I also believe that we can rarely achieve these objectives through unilateral American action, particularly through military action. Iraq shows us that democracy cannot simply be imposed by force. Rather, these objectives are best achieved when we partner with the international community and with the countries and peoples of the region. So what does this mean going forward? In the near term, America’s diplomatic efforts will focus on two particular issues: Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons, and the Arab-Israeli conflict. While these issues are not the cause of all the region’s problems, they have been a major source of instability for far too long, and resolving them can help serve as a foundation for a broader peace. The United States and Iran have been isolated from one another since the Islamic Revolution of 1979. This mistrust has deep roots. Iranians have long complained of a history of U.S. interference in their affairs and of America’s role in overthrowing an Iranian government during the Cold War. On the other hand, Americans see an Iranian government that has declared the United States an enemy and directly -- or through proxies -- taken American hostages, killed U.S. troops and civilians, and threatened our ally Israel with destruction. I don’t believe this difficult history can be overcome overnight -- the suspicions run too deep. But I do believe that if we can resolve the issue of Iran’s nuclear program, that can serve as a major step down a long road towards a different relationship, one based on mutual interests and mutual respect. Since I took office, I’ve made it clear in letters to the Supreme Leader in Iran and more recently to President Rouhani that America prefers to resolve our concerns over Iran’s nuclear program peacefully, although we are determined to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon. We are not seeking regime change and we respect the right of the Iranian people to access peaceful nuclear energy. Instead, we insist that the Iranian government meet its responsibilities under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and U.N. Security Council resolutions. Meanwhile, the Supreme Leader has issued a fatwa against the development of nuclear weapons, and President Rouhani has just recently reiterated that the Islamic Republic will never develop a nuclear weapon. So these statements made by our respective governments should offer the basis for a meaningful agreement. We should be able to achieve a resolution that respects the rights of the Iranian people, while giving the world confidence that the Iranian program is peaceful. But to succeed, conciliatory words will have to be matched by actions that are transparent and verifiable. After all, it's the Iranian government’s choices that have led to the comprehensive sanctions that are currently in place. And this is not simply an issue between the United States and Iran. The world has seen Iran evade its responsibilities in the past and has an abiding interest in making sure that Iran meets its obligations in the future. But I want to be clear we are encouraged that President Rouhani received from the Iranian people a mandate to pursue a more moderate course. And given President Rouhani’s stated commitment to reach an agreement, I am directing John Kerry to pursue this effort with the Iranian government in close cooperation with the European Union -- the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Russia and China. The roadblocks may prove to be too great, but I firmly believe the diplomatic path must be tested. For while the status quo will only deepen Iran’s isolation, Iran’s genuine commitment to go down a different path will be good for the region and the world, and will help the Iranian people meet their extraordinary potential -- in commerce and culture; in science and education. We are also determined to resolve a conflict that goes back even further than our differences with Iran, and that is the conflict between Palestinians and Israelis. I’ve made it clear that the United States will never compromise our commitment to Israel’s security, nor our support for its existence as a Jewish state. Earlier this year, in Jerusalem, I was inspired by young Israelis who stood up for the belief that peace was necessary, just, and possible. And I believe there’s a growing recognition within Israel that the occupation of the West Bank is tearing at the democratic fabric of the Jewish state. But the children of Israel have the right to live in a world where the nations assembled in this body fully recognize their country, and where we unequivocally reject those who fire rockets at their homes or incite others to hate them. Likewise, the United States remains committed to the belief that the Palestinian people have a right to live with security and dignity in their own sovereign state. On the same trip, I had the opportunity to meet with young Palestinians in Ramallah whose ambition and incredible potential are matched by the pain they feel in having no firm place in the community of nations. They are understandably cynical that real progress will ever be made, and they’re frustrated by their families enduring the daily indignity of occupation. But they too recognize that two states is the only real path to peace -- because just as the Palestinian people must not be displaced, the state of Israel is here to stay. (Parte do discurso que Obama fez esta semana na Assembleia Geral das Nações Unidas)

25.9.13

Bissau: 40 noves fora nada

Bissau, 24. Set. 03 (ANG) No dia em que se comemora o 40º aniversário da independência da Guiné-Bissau, a ANG ouviu, à propósito, alguns jovens, que foram unânimes em saudar a luta pela “libertação do jugo colonial”, mas deram nota negativa ao balanço das quatro décadas de governação do país. Para Tai Camará, de 30 anos, animadora local da ONG Tiniguena, no Sector de Caravela , Sul do país, apesar de valer a pena a independência , até agora “nada se viu, em termos de desenvolvimento do país” . Tai sustenta a sua opinião citando como exemplo o estado em que se encontra o sector de Caravela, uma localidade situada no zana insular, em que, segundo disse,”mais se sente a presença de organizações Não-governamentais em detrimento da do Estado. “Neste momento, no nosso sector e com o apoio da Tiniguena, funciona normalmente, uma escola comunitária de 1ª a 7ª classes e há igualmente um projecto no domínio da energia solar”, relatou Camará para realçar o papel dos actores não estatais, no processo do desenvolvimento do país, sobretudo nas zonas rurais. Esta delegada da Juventude neste sector sul do país que, se encontra em Bissau para assistir um curso de “saneamento básico e emprego Jovem” disse esperar um futuro melhor para a Guiné mas, para isso, pede a “paz e tranquilidade . Outro cidadão ouvido pela ANG chama-se Mário Sanca, de 30 anos e é fotógrafo de profissão. “Até agora não vimos nada”, no que se refere a governação do país”, lamentou para de seguida acrescentar que contudo, acredita no desenvolvimento da Guiné-Bissau no futuro. Uri Djalo, bacharel em Administração Pública que, por ironia do destino, nasceu a 25 de Abril de 1974, dia da revolução em Portugal, que viria a culminar com a assinatura do acordo de independência, no mesmo ano, entre o PAIGC e regime português de então, apontou, a “desorganização” do Estado, como a principal causa do alegado falhanço na governação do país. Também, Mirna Gama, emigrante em Portugal que se encontra de visita a sua “pátria” , não hesitou em considerar “péssima” a governação do país ao longo dos anos, e foi mais longe ao dizer que, “actualmente na Guiné-Bissau tudo está parado”. “Neste momento e face as dificuldades que enfrentamos lá fora, queremos regressar ao país, mas aqui a situação é pior”, lamentou. Mirna da Gama apela aos “compatriotas” para elegerem a “unidade nacional, o perdão mútuo e a reconciliação, para que a Guiné-Bissau possa sair da situação em que se encontra”.

Síria: A guerra como negócio

AFP, Damascus While most Syrians get poorer with every day of war, Aleppo’s main gun seller Abu Mohammad is doing just fine by selling firearms, including rocket-propelled grenades, ammunition and even swords. “War is great business,” said the northern city’s only gunshop owner, as he laid several hand grenades out on a counter. “I wanted to help the rebels because they had no arms or ammunition,” the 39-year-old told AFP, adding that he makes an astonishing 50,000 Syrian pounds ($370) a day. Abu Mohammad opened his gun store in the rebel-held neighborhood of Fardos earlier this year after a leg injury cut short a nine-month stint battling alongside the Free Syrian Army. Several weapons are exhibited on the shop walls, including 9mm guns and AK-47 assault rifles, one of them silver-plated. “They’re made in Iraq and Russia, and prices range from $1,500 to $2,000, depending on the quality,” said Abu Mohammad’s 20-year-old son, a rebel fighter who lends a hand in the store. “We also have military uniforms, boots, gas masks and walkie-talkies. Most of the material comes from Turkey,” he added. Reaching for a 9mm gun, Mohammad says he enjoys helping his father out in the shop because “I love weapons.” It’s 4:00 pm (1300 GMT) and the two men running the family business are busy serving clients. Mohammad Assi, 43, walks in along with several of his brothers in arms. He is looking for ammunition for his rifle. Counting a wad of cash, Assi says he would like to buy a new rifle, “but these models aren’t very good and they’re too expensive.” He hands over 15,000 Syrian pounds ($110) for 150 rounds. “100 pounds for a bullet,” the rebel sighs. “Ammo is so scarce. That’s why it’s the most expensive thing to buy.” Gun seller Abu Mohammad understands there’s a shortage of cash, so he’s open to making deals with some of his clients. “When the rebels seize an army base, they come to my store and swap weapons for ammunition,” he said. Some buyers come in looking for more specialized products, including one who wants a scope that will help locate snipers. Another walks in holding three swords and shows them to Abu Mohammad, who unsheathes them and inspects them for quality. “We also buy weapons off people who need the money to feed their families,” Abu Mohammad says. “Before the war broke out, there were many people who collected weapons, or who held onto them after they’d finished their draft service. They aren’t going to use them, so they bring them over to me to make some money off them,” he added. Though most of Abu Mohammad’s clients are rebels, some civilians visit his store as well. “I only sell hunting weapons and 9mm guns to civilians. I never sell them military-grade weapons,” he said. More than a year after a massive rebel assault on Aleppo -- once Syria’s commercial capital -- the city is divided into rebel and army-controlled districts. Those who have not fled the city face not only escalating poverty and daily battles in their districts, but also the danger of theft and looting by criminal groups. “I’m here to buy a gun... Because of the situation, I prefer to be armed in order to protect my family,” said a 65-year-old man who brought his grandson to Abu Mohammad’s store. The gun seller is also adept at repairing damaged weapons. Laying out a sniper rifle on his work table, he points a laser light through the barrel to check its accuracy. “I’ve always liked fixing weapons and making them,” said Abu Mohammad, who used to work at a weapons factory. “It’s one of the few things I’m good at,” he says with a smile.

Os norte-americanos da Al Shabaab

Most of the Amer­i­can men that have trained with Al Shabaab are believed to have been rad­i­cal­ized in the U.S., and have been recruited by Al Shabaab both on the Inter­net and in per­son. Omar Ham­mami, an Amer­i­can cit­i­zen from Alabama, is per­haps the most well-known Amer­i­can recruiter for Al Shabaab. The group dis­sem­i­nated online pro­pa­ganda videos fea­tur­ing Ham­mami to recruit young Amer­i­can men to join its insurgency.omar-hammami-twitter Ham­mami was report­edly exe­cuted in Soma­lia last week by his for­mer asso­ciates. Ham­mami appar­ently split with Al Shabaab over his belief that it was inter­ested only in local pol­i­tics and the fight in Soma­lia, rather than the cause of a global ”jiahd of the entire Ummah [Mus­lim nation].” Although most of Al Shabaab’s vio­lent acts have occurred within Somalia’s bor­ders, it has expressed a will­ing­ness to attack out­side tar­gets. In July 2010 it com­mit­ted twin bomb­ings against tar­gets in Uganda that killed more than 70 peo­ple, includ­ing an Amer­i­can aid worker. Dan­ish intel­li­gence offi­cials have alleged that an attempt to kill a Dan­ish car­toon­ist who printed con­tro­ver­sial car­toons depict­ing the Prophet Muham­mad in 2005 by a Somali national six months before the Uganda is linked to Al Shabaab as well. The group has also declared an “open bat­tle” against Israel, which it deems the “oppress­ing Zion­ist entity,” and Jew­ish inter­ests in Africa. Israelis owned stores in West­gate mall, which is also Israeli-owned. Anti-Defamation League (instituição judaica)

Quénia: Identidade dos atacantes

Al shabab has released the names and nationalities of 9 of the attackers involved in the Westgate mall attack (Kenya). The information was posted on al shabab’s twitter account, shortly afterwards the account was suspended. This is the fourth time Twitter is suspending an al shabab’s account. Just on Saturday, Twitter suspended another al shabab account after it used the platform to claim responsibility for the Westgate attack. These are the names and nationalities of the attackers; 1: Ahmed Mohamed Isse, 22 years old from Minnesota, USA 2: Abdifatah Osman Keynadiid, 24 years old from Minnesota, Minneapolis 3: General Mustaf Nuradin, 27 years from Kansas City, America 4: Qasim Said, 22 year old from Garissa, Kenya 5: Ahmed Nasir Shirdon, 24 years old from UK 6: Zaki Jma’a Arale, 20 years old from Hargeisa, Somalia. 7: Ismail Guled, 23 years old from Finland 8: Siad Nuh, 25 years old from Kismayu, Somalia 9: Abdirazaq Mowlid, 24 years old from Canada Meanwhile in the U.S, President Obama has come under severe pressure to implement a plan to send troops to support the fight against al shabab. Lawmakers and analysts are increasingly concerned that al shabab is able to recruit members from other continents and fund its operations easily. Photograph: Dai Kurokawa/EPA Africa Center for Strategic Studies

24.9.13

Quénia: mais de 70 mortos no ataque islamista

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta has declared the end of a bloody four-day siege by Islamist militants at Nairobi's Westgate shopping centre. Five attackers were shot dead by troops and 11 suspects were in custody, he said in a TV address to the nation. Kenya has "shamed and defeated our attackers" but the "losses are immense", he said, confirming that 61 civilians and six soldiers had died. Three days of national mourning have been declared, starting on Wednesday. Continue reading the main story “ Start Quote There was no air, no light and no water - we just tried to stay as quiet as possible in the hope they wouldn't find us” End Quote Sonia Hanspaul Vijen Eyewitness accounts As the clearing of the mall continues, Kenya is braced for the death toll to rise further. Several bodies - including those of "terrorists" - are thought to be trapped under rubble after three floors of the building collapsed following a blaze on Monday, officials said. Some 175 people were injured in the attack; 62 people remain in hospital and many others are being treated for shock and are undergoing counselling. "I promise that we shall have a full accountability for the mindless destruction, deaths, pain, loss and suffering we have all undergone as a national family," the president said. "These cowards will meet justice, as will their accomplices and patrons, wherever they are." At least 18 foreigners are among the dead, including six Britons, as well as citizens from France, Canada, the Netherlands, Australia, Peru, India, Ghana, South Africa and China. Continued threat The militants stormed the Westgate centre on Saturday, throwing grenades and firing indiscriminately on shoppers and staff. Somali Islamist group al-Shabab said it had carried out the attack in retaliation for Kenyan army operations in Somalia. The president said he could not confirm reports that a British national and two or three US citizens were involved in the attacks, but he said forensic experts were carrying out tests to ascertain their nationalities. BBC

23.9.13

Síria: Assad, o "inimigo imaginário"

Al Arabiya Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Sunday denounced France, Britain and the U.S. for submitting a draft resolution to the U.N. Security Council to place Syrian chemical weapons under international control. In an interview with China's state television CCTV, Assad said that the Western powers were fighting an “imaginary enemy.” Interviewed in Damascus, Assad said he was not concerned about the draft resolution and that China and Russia would “ensure any excuse for military action against Syria will not stand.” The resolution came in response to a chemical weapons attack last month which killed hundreds of people. The U.S. government has said Assad’s forces were responsible for the attack, while the Syrian regime placed blame on opposition fighters. Envoys from the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council - the U.S., Britain, France, Russia and China - met last Thursday to discuss a draft resolution Western powers hope will make the deal legally binding. Under a U.S.-Russian deal, Assad’s chemical weapons arsenal must be destroyed by the middle of next year. In the interview, Assad said gunmen could hinder the access of chemical weapons inspectors to sites where the weapons were stored and made. “We know that these terrorists are obeying the orders of other countries and these countries do drive these terrorists to commit acts that could get the Syrian government blamed for hindering this agreement.” Asked whether Syria had lots of chemical weapons, Assad said: "Syria has been manufacturing chemical weapons for decades so it's normal for there to be large quantities in the country. “We are a nation at war, we've got territories that have been occupied for more than 40 years, but in any case, the Syrian army is trained to fight using conventional weapons.” However, he emphasized that the chemical weapons were stored “under special conditions to prevent any terrorist for other destructive forces from tampering with them, that is, destructive forces that could come from other countries.” “So there is nothing to worry about. The chemical weapons in Syria are in a safe place that is secure and under the control of the Syrian army.” The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons said on Saturday Syria had handed over information about its chemical weapons arsenal, meeting the first deadline of the disarmament operation. (With Reuters)

A Shabab no Quénia: dezenas de mortos

NAIROBI, Kenya — The ferocious armed political movement known as the Shabab is on the ropes in Somalia, losing territory and influence in its home country. Yet this weekend the Shabab showed that they are as dangerous as ever as a terrorist force, keeping Kenyan forces at bay through two days at the Westgate mall in Nairobi even as the militants mounted a coordinated attack against African Union forces in Mogadishu, according to senior American counterterrorism and diplomatic officials. Some officials warned that the Shabab could be signaling a wider offensive, particularly within Kenya, despite their losses in recent years at the hands of the African Union and Kenyan troops in its home country. “What we’re witnessing is Al Shabab taking its asymmetric attacks into Kenya at the same time it’s intensifying its pattern of attacks in Somalia,” said one senior American official who has been monitoring classified intelligence reports and diplomatic cables since the attack started Saturday. Counterterrorism officials say that the Shabab’s sophistication has only increased as it has made common cause with groups including franchises of Al Qaeda in Yemen and Northern Africa and the Boko Haram organization in Nigeria, sharing tactics, techniques, training and financing. Now, it is clear that the group is using those resources to punish Kenya on its own soil, mostly for its role within Somalia, but also, to some degree, because of growing American support for the Kenyan security forces. In recent years, Kenya has worked closely with the Americans on military cooperation, hunting Al Qaeda and combating piracy. The C.I.A. station in Nairobi is among the largest in Africa. And the United States ambassador to Kenya, Robert F. Godec, was formerly the State Department’s deputy coordinator for counterterrorism. American officials said they were working with the Kenyan authorities to learn more about the Nairobi attackers and how they carried out the attack. One focus was on whether the militants were Kenya-based or sent from Somalia; another was whether any had ties within the United States, as the attackers claimed on Sunday. One senior American official said there had not been any increased “chatter” — electronic intercepts — in recent days about a possible attack against a major target in Nairobi. But the Westgate mall was one of at least three major shopping malls in the Kenyan capital about which American Embassy officials had expressed concerns over faulty security to Kenyan authorities. The Shabab means the youth in Arabic. The group was formed in the middle of last decade as the small, armed militia for Somalia’s Islamic Courts Union, which had risen to power after driving a group of C.I.A.-financed Somali warlords from Mogadishu. Then, the Shabab’s ranks swelled amid growing anger inside Somalia over the brutal urban tactics used by Ethiopian troops, who had invaded the country to dislodge the Islamic Courts Union from the capital. Shabab fighters waged a bloody insurgency campaign against the Ethiopians, carrying out hit and run attacks and planting roadside bombs. In a few short years, the group consolidated its control over a large swath of Somali territory, but then suffered setbacks as the African Union and Kenya, among others, became more deeply involved. The Shabab withdrew from the cities in the face of superior military forces fairly quickly, often in the space of a day, regrouping in the countryside. But they preserved their core fighting force — estimated by the United Nations Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea at about 5,000 — and avoided direct confrontations. And since then it has seemed to gather momentum in terms of terrorist attacks. There have long been concerns that the Shabab were increasing their ability to strike abroad, first stoked by its bombing attack against soccer fans in Kampala, Uganda, in 2010, killing 76. But despite its threats to strike at American interests — and the propaganda value it has gained by showing the American ties of some of its members — most experts say the group’s focus is still on getting foreign troops out of Somalia. The attack in Uganda was explicitly for that country’s role in the African Union force operating in Somalia. And now the attack in Kenya was a blow for one of the group’s most constant military antagonists. The New York Times

Nigéria: Ataque mata 142 pessoas

Le bilan de l'attaque menée mardi dans le nord-est du Nigeria par des membres présumés du groupe islamiste Boko Haram est passé à 142 morts, a annoncé un responsable local dimanche. Le bilan de l'attaque menée mardi dans le nord-est du Nigeria par des membres présumés du groupe islamiste Boko Haram est passé à 142 morts, a annoncé un responsable local dimanche. "Nous avons découvert 55 corps mercredi et 87 corps jeudi", a déclaré à l'AFP Abdulaziz Kolomi, de l'agence de protection environnementale de l'Etat de Borno. L'attaque avait eu lieu dans cette région, dans la ville reculée de Benisheik, et été attribuée au groupe islamiste armé Boko Haram. Le précédent bilan s'élevait à 87 morts. Les assaillants vêtus d'uniformes militaires avaient dressé des barrages sur la grande route traversant la ville, abattant des automobilistes, et incendié des dizaines de bâtiments. De cadavres jonchaient le bas-côté de la route après leur départ. Le massacre n'a pas été revendiqué, mais Boko Haram mène régulièrement des opérations de représailles contre les habitants de la région depuis que ces derniers ont créé des milices d'autodéfense qui travaillent avec l'armée. Les habitants de Benisheik ont affirmé que les assaillants de mardi soir sélectionnaient spécifiquement les habitants de l'Etat de Borno, laissant les habitants d'autres régions traverser leurs barrages. Benisheik avait déjà été le théâtre d'affrontements sanglants le 8 septembre entre des membres présumés de Boko Haram et des miliciens. Le nord-est musulman du Nigeria, vaste région placée sous état d'urgence, a connu récemment une flambée de violence. L'armée y mène depuis mai une offensive dans l'espoir de mettre fin à l'insurrection du Boko Haram, qui ensanglante la zone depuis quatre ans. Jeune Afrique

22.9.13

Turcos desiludidos com a União Europeia

Turkey will probably never join the European Union because of prejudicial attitudes by the bloc’s existing members, Ankara’s chief EU negotiator said, in what appeared to be the first high-level acknowledgment that its decades-long bid might fail. Turkey was more likely to negotiate special access to the EU market, like Norway, EU Affairs Minister Egemen Bagis said, according to an article in London’s Telegraph newspaper published on Saturday. He said the country had suffered from prejudice in both its EU membership aspirations and its recent lost bid to host the Olympics, without naming any countries. “They should understand that they are not hurting me by putting me on the back burner. They are hurting themselves,” said Bagis, according to the Telegraph. Germany and France have always had concerns about allowing a largely Muslim country of 76 million people into the bloc, fearing that Turkey’s cultural differences and its size will make it too difficult to integrate. German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble bluntly stated Berlin’s opposition in July saying Turkey was not part of Europe. Turkey became an associate of the bloc in the 1960s but accession talks launched in 2005 got bogged down in a dispute over the divided island of Cyprus, an EU member. Support for EU membership among the Turkish public fell to 44 percent this year from 73 percent in 2004, according to a German Marshall Fund report released this week. Reuters

Bissau: Ramos Horta começa a preocupar-se...

Bissau (Lusa, 18 de Setembro de 2013) - O representante da Organização das Nações Unidas (ONU) na Guiné-Bissau, José Ramos-Horta, condenou ontem, quarta-feira, em declarações à Lusa, os interrogatórios a que autoridades policiais e militares têm sujeitado algumas figuras públicas. Ramos-Horta deixa “um conselho às autoridades nacionais e a quem de direito, se querem limpar a imagem da Guiné-Bissau, têm que começar por ser muito sensíveis a respeitar a dignidade e integridade da pessoa humana e do cidadão guineense”. O presidente da Liga Guineense dos Direitos Humanos, Luís Vaz Martins, foi interrogado pela Polícia Judiciária no final de Agosto por causa de um comunicado em que desmentiu informações dadas pelo chefe das Forças Armadas, António Indjai. Na última semana, um comentador da Rádio Bombolom FM, em Bissau, foi interrogado pelos serviços de contra inteligência e levado a tribunal militar depois de ter criticado as recentes promoções de oficiais. Em ambos os casos, os inquiridos foram ouvidos durante várias horas até serem dispensados pelas autoridades. Para o representante da ONU, “as instituições do Estado devem saber exactamente qual o papel de cada uma”, em vez de algumas “assumirem outras funções em que detêm” e “interrogam” pessoas. “Às tantas não se sabe quem é quem em termos de instituições”, acrescentou. Por outro lado, “a comunidade internacional acompanha a situação e vê com muita preocupação” e “decepção”, o facto de que “activistas, defensores dos direitos humanos, jornalistas, artistas e intelectuais possam ser intimidados”. “É uma situação totalmente inaceitável”, concluiu.

21.9.13

Em defesa dos tártaros da Crimeia

Today to we are discussing the consequences of a painful chapter in the history of Europe and Crimea – that of the Deportation by the Stalin regime of the Crimean Tatar population, along with other ethnic groups such as the Armenians, Bulgarians, Germans and Greeks. Since the nineteen eighties, 266,000 Crimean Tatars and thousands of other Formerly Deported Peoples have returned to their historic homeland, reaffirming their will to reverse an historical injustice that we all condemn in the most unequivocal terms. During the past twenty years, the Ukrainian Authorities, including the Council of Ministers of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, have shown political willingness to address and solve the legal and economic challenges that derive from this process. I want to explicitly commend this commitment by Ukraine, and encourage further steps to address remaining issues. While we cannot change our past, we can work together to avoid that it creates new and artificial division lines for our common future. The European Union was born from the willingness to overcome the grievances of the past and can actively contribute to finding ways to address such matters as the consequences of mass deportation. Indeed many ethnic groups in Europe suffered mass deportation and genocide during or in the aftermath of Second World War. Ensuring that such events never happen again is one of the visions that lead to the establishment of the European Union. But to overcome this difficult past, dialogue between all stakeholders and interested parties is crucial. This is why I proposed that we meet today to have a frank and open discussion, to set aside possible differences and to find ways to produce solutions that are in the advantages of all sides. Ladies and gentleman, Finding a common language requires reaching a common understanding of the situation we need to address. The European Union has regular contacts with the Ukrainian authorities and with representatives of the Crimean Tatar Community on the issues that affect Crimean Tatars. However, we find that there is a substantially diverging assessment of the situation on the ground concerning the obstacles in our way and the steps that need to be taken. Without a discussion based on facts, and clarity about facts and figures, we cannot expect any tangible outcome. Let me mention some of the key issues that need reflection: • the legal aspects of return; • the issue of land, housing and property; • political participation; • the socio-economic aspects of return and integration; • the issue of language, culture and religion; and • the issue of education. I am sure that on all those issues there is scope for dialogue and finding a common understanding. Having had very good cooperation with the OSCE High Commissioner for National Minorities, and bearing in mind its universally recognised authority and prestige in matters of conflict prevention, I would advise that its involvement and recommendations are looked into very carefully. Needless to say those findings that we share steer clear from any suggestions that may be seen as interfering in Ukraine´s sovereignty. In a similar vein, the proposal made by the Mejlis of Crimean Tatar to hold an international forum in 2014 under the aegis of the OSCE High Commissioner, coinciding with the 70th anniversary of the deportation is an option that can and should be discussed and I also hope agreed. There may be differences on the objectives and the modalities of the event, but I believe that through dialogue it is possible to find a common ground. To conclude, I hope that this meeting will help establish a constructive dialogue based on a common understanding of the realities on the ground, and that it contributes to the definition of the main elements of a roadmap to address outstanding issues. - http://www.unpo.org/article/16397

Cabinda: As actividades de Rui Gabirro

"... we discovered Mr. Gabirro's fascinating history with the political enclave of Cabinda. CABINDA? Mr. Gabirro owns the website at cabinda.net which is the internet presence of an entity which was (is?) according to the internet, a short-lived secessionist regime in the Cabinda enclave of Angola. In addition that website (registered by Mr. Gabirro) also hosted the websites for the Gran Logia de la Republica Dominica, the Gran Logia de los Antiguos Libres y Aceptados Masones del Ecuador and - you guessed it! - the so-called Regular Grand Lodge of England. You can see that here . The Internic registration was in the name of Rui Gabirro but he has since changed that to "none". Nevertheless, he's still the admin contact and both the web design and writing style is uniquely his - and using his 'gabirro@ gmail.com address. ... Rui Gabirro, in addition to being Robert Lamar , is also - according to THIS page - actually Duke Alexander of Cabinda so perhaps we can understand why 'his' RGLE is supporting 'his' dukedom". ... oom Information --- Rui Alexandre Gabirro, aparentemente de origem portuguesa, mas não se expressando muito fluentemente em português, tem como um dos seus heterónimos Mangovo Ngoyo, pretendendo nesta qualidade desempenhar alguns cargos num pretenso "Governo da República de Cabinda". Já chegou, por exemplo, a vender passaportes e selos de um Estado que não existe, que não passa do sonho de algumas pessoas.

Al-Qaeda mata no Iémen

Al Arabiya Fresh attacks attributed to al-Qaeda militants in Yemen killed 56 policemen and soldiers early Friday, Al Arabiya’s correspondent reported from Sanaa. Car bombs targeted two military sites at Yemen’s southern governorate of Shabwa. Around 20 died when two car bombs exploded at a military camp in al-Nashama and about 10 were killed by gunmen in the town of Mayfaa. Officials believe the attacks were carried by suspected members of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), a local source told Reuters. A concealed bomb in one car exploded among a group of soldiers at the gate of the al-Nashama camp as the driver sought to enter. The other was already inside the camp when it exploded, one of the security sources said. In Mayfaa, gunmen opened fire on a military headquarters, killing around 10 people, before escaping in stolen army vehicles, local residents told Reuters. AQAP is seen by Western countries as one of the most dangerous branches of al Qaeda because it has attempted to carry out bombings on international airlines. The Shabwa Province is a lawless, rugged area that has been the scene of much fighting in recent years between Islamist militants and the security forces. (With Reuters)

20.9.13

Síria: O tempo é de esperança

Depois das intervenções do Papa Francisco e de outras entidades, chegou-se em meados de Setembro ao consenso de que a via negocial é bem preferível à intervenção musculada para acabar com o conflito na Síria. Damasco aceita desfazer-se das armas químicas; e assim se evita, por agora, o pior. O tempo é de esperança. Jorge Heitor A Comissão de Inquérito das Nações Unidas que trata das violações dos direitos humanos na Síria declarou no dia 11 de Setembro que os civis continuavam a pagar o preço da ausência de conversações substanciais para se negociar o fim do conflito, que nestes dois últimos anos e meio já causou a morte de perto de 100.000 pessoas e desalojou de suas casas mais de seis milhões. O relatório daquela comissão pormenorizou as chacinas e outros assassínios, cometidos impunemente por todas as partes em confronto. Um número indeterminado de homens, mulheres e crianças desapareceu, pelo que se sentiu a necessidade urgente de se acabar com as hostilidades e de se voltar à mesa das negociações, de modo a encontrar uma solução política. Já antes disso, o Papa Francisco promovera uma jornada de jejum e de oração para que os acontecimentos não se precipitassem, com um ataque norte-americano e francês a alvos sírios; e escrevera ao Presidente russo, Vladimir Putin, solicitando-lhe que interviesse no sentido de se procurar resolver tão grande drama, que estava a ameaçar envolver numerosos países. Dois milhões de refugiados As agências humanitárias têm vindo a falar de dois milhões de refugiados sírios que chegaram a outros países, a juntar aos quatro milhões deslocados internamente, temendo que muito pior se poderia tornar a situação se realmente o Presidente norte-americano, Barack Obama, tivesse dado ordem, logo na primeira quinzena de Setembro, para se atacar a Síria, com todo o apoio do seu homólogo francês, François Hollande. Perante o forte sentimento pacifista de uma grande parte da opinião pública europeia e norte-americana, Obama, Prémio Nobel da Paz, recuou; adiou a votação do assunto no Congresso, onde se arriscava a ser derrotado, e aceitou dar uma oportunidade à diplomacia, como lhe era pedido pelo Papa e pela Rússia. Washington mostrava-se particularmente determinado a avançar depois de, no dia 21 de Agosto, um ataque com gás químico ter causado numa zona de Damasco a morte de centenas de pessoas (algumas fontes chegaram a falar de 1.400). Só que, Moscovo disse que o ataque não teria sido da responsabilidade do Presidente Bashar al-Assad, mas sim das forças que o combatem, entre as quais se encontram extremistas estrangeiros, nomeadamente ligados à Al-Qaeda. Assad transige Encostado à parede, sob a ameaça de mísseis norte-americanos, o Presidente sírio prometeu divulgar os locais onde tem depositadas armas químicas e assinar até a convenção internacional contra o uso de tais armas, de modo a que não se arraste esta imensa tragédia humana. As armas deverão agora ser destruídas ou retiradas do país até meados de 2014, segundo um acordo assinado entre os Estados Unidos e a Rússia. O secretário-norte-americano de Estado, John Kerry, divulgou no dia 14 de Setembro um documento segundo o qual Damasco entregaria daí a uma semana uma lista completa de todas as suas armas químicas. Se a Síria não cumprir aquilo a que se comprometeu, o acordo poderá ser reforçado por uma resolução das Nações Unidas, apoiada pela ameaça de sanções ou pela força militar. A coligação de forças que combate o Presidente Assad rejeitou de imediato o acordo negociado entre Washington e Moscovo, pois estava ansiosa porque os norte-americanos lançassem um ataque militar, que ficou assim em suspenso, pelo menos pelos tempos mais próximos. No sábado 14 de Setembro as Nações Unidas anunciaram que dentro de um mês, ou seja em 14 de Outubro, a Síria adere à Convenção que proíbe as armas químicas. Até Novembro, os EUA e a Rússia vão examinar dezenas de locais onde os sírios poderão ter armazenado armas químicas, de modo a que as mesmas venham a ser destruídas até meados do próximo ano. Entretanto, para se ver bem que não se trata de uma guerra de bons contra maus, surgiram listas de crimes cometidos por grupos da oposição, como execuções, raptos e ataques a bairros civis. A culpa está dos dois lados: ela é tanto do Partido Baas como dos islamistas que o enfrentam; pelo que dos dois lados deveriam ser dados passos no sentido de uma desejável reconciliação. Ao fim e ao cabo, um ataque limitado às forças sírias, em Setembro, como se chegou a admitir, não iria acabar com o conflito na Síria, mas poderia sim envolver os Estados Unidos numa guerra muito complexa, na qual se enfrentam interesses de países como Israel, a Turquia e o Irão. Defender a necessidade de acção e, ao mesmo tempo, manter a acção limitada a determinados objectivos tem sido a atitude quase insustentável de Barack Obama, desde o fim de Agosto, não se sabendo muito bem por quanto tempo mais seria possível o Presidente norte-americano continuar assim na corda bamba, com a sua popularidade a diminuir, por não se perceber muito bem o que queria ou em que sentido exacto é que iria avançar. Obama no labirinto Há dois anos Obama disse que Assad teria de partir, tal como tiveram de partir Saddam Hussein e Muammar Khadafi. E nunca se percebeu com toda a clareza qual a espécie de ataques que ele tem tido em vista, ao mesmo tempo que se ia especulando que ao enfraquecimento do Presidente sírio se poderia suceder o caos, com limpeza dos alauítas e de outras minorias, nomeadamente a cristã. Obama, que fez 48 anos no dia 11 de Setembro, declara-se admirador da política externa do primeiro Presidente George Bush, na altura em que caiu o Muro de Berlim e a União Soviética se desintegrou; nomeadamente pelo facto de ele não ter feito grandes pronunciamentos nessa altura, deixando essencialmente que os acontecimentos falassem por si. Por seu turno, Assad vê-se a si próprio como o último bastião da resistência contra o terrorismo islamista, dizendo que o que quer é uma Síria forte e unificada, sem Irmãos Muçulmanos nem Al-Qaeda. E surge ao olhos de uma série de observadores como o mal menor, de entre os potenciais males que por ali existem ou se poderão instalar. Diálogo Washington-Moscovo A partir de 12 de Setembro reuniram-se em Genebra o secretário de Estado norte-americano, John Kerry, e o ministro russo dos Negócios Estrangeiros, Serguei Lavrov, na presença de um representante as Nações Unidas e da Liga Árabe, de modo a tentar resolver as divergências existentes entre Washington e Moscovo quanto à melhor maneira de resolver o problema sírio. Enquanto isto, a oposição a Assad ia dizendo que, mesmo sem o recurso a armas químicas, ele é senhor de um vasto arsenal de armas convencionais, pelo que as matanças iriam prosseguir, com um balanço final bem superior a 100.000 mortos. O grande feito do Papa Francisco, do Governo italiano e de outras instâncias que entraram em cena no início de Setembro foi evitar, pelo menos a curto prazo, que os acontecimentos se precipitassem, quando algumas televisões já diziam estar por dias um lançamento de mísseis norte-americanos contra alvos sírios. As intervenções da Santa Sé e a recusa do Parlamento britânico em autorizar o Governo de Sua Majestade a participar num bombardeamento de alvos sírios suspenderam o ímpeto inicial de Barack Obama e de François Hollande, que poderia ter levado Assad e alguns dos seus aliados, como o Irão, a retaliarem, atacando Israel, a Turquia e talvez até mesmo alvos em países ocidentais. (artigo a sair em Outubro na revista comboniana Além-Mar)

Síria apresenta lista de armas químicas

Paul Adams BBC News -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The agreement reached last Saturday in Geneva set some very ambitious deadlines. Syria was given just a week to hand over "a comprehensive listing" to the OPCW, including names and quantities of chemical weapons agents, types of munitions, as well as where and how Syria's chemical weapons are developed, produced and stored. Syria's initial submission to the OPCW clearly doesn't meet this stringent standard, but this may not matter. Together with Syria's quick ratification of the OPCW charter, last weekend, it's an indication that the Assad regime is prepared to engage with this process, even if it would prefer to do so at its own pace. It's still early days, but the rest of the Geneva agreement's demanding timetable could be hard to meet. It would be surprising if the Assad regime did not play for time to a certain extent. It may not feel it can use its chemical weapons, but that doesn't mean that they're not still valuable. As long as the international community feels that Syria is co-operating, however reluctantly, the regime knows it's very unlikely to be bombed.

Bubo Na Tchuto: Lost in Translation

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The United States is struggling to prosecute one of the prized catches in its global war on drugs, Guinea Bissau's former navy chief Jose Americo Bubo Na Tchuto, because lawyers cannot find enough translators who speak his native Kriol. Na Tchuto was arrested in a sting off the West African coast in April in the Drug Enforcement Administration's most high-profile capture of a suspected drugs kingpin in Africa. He was flown to New York where he has been in jail awaiting trial. At a pre-trial hearing at U.S. District Court in Manhattan on Thursday, attorneys said they sought the help of the United Nations to find people to communicate with him and translate reams of evidence, but without much success. "We only have one translator, and that is simply not enough," said Na Tchuto's lawyer, Sabrina Shroff. It was the second such hearing since Na Tchuto's arrest that focused on problems finding translators, a problem which has delayed scheduling of his trial. Another pre-trial hearing is scheduled for November. Guinea Bissau, a poverty-stricken former Portuguese colony neighboring Senegal, is believed by the United Nations to be a major transshipment point for Latin American cocaine headed for users in Europe. The United States and European countries have suspected the country's military of involvement in the drug trade for yeas. Portuguese is the country's official language, but most Bissau-Guineans rarely speak it and instead use local Kriol dialects or tribal languages. The U.S. Department of Justice accused Na Tchuto of plotting to import Colombian cocaine and export weapons, including surface-to-air missiles, to Colombia's FARC rebel group - labeled a terrorist organization by Washington. He was seized in a luxury yacht off the coast of Guinea Bissau following a months-long undercover operation by the Drugs Enforcement Administration involving former FARC rebels and numerous recorded secret meetings. Na Tchuto, a former fighter in Guinea Bissau's 1956-1973 independence war who is now in his mid 60s, has denied any involvement in drugs trafficking. The sting also targeted Guinea Bissau's army chief, Antonio Indjai, who led a coup in 2012 that derailed the country's elections, but he avoided arrest by refusing to go offshore. Indjai, too, has denied running drugs. Shroff said the delays were wearing on her client, who attended the hearing in a brown prison uniform alongside two of his aides and co-defendants, Papis Djeme and Tchamy Yala. "He's deteriorating. His cataracts are worsening. It is prison and old age," she said. (Editing by Mohammad Zargham)