$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


US, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait Have not Endorsed a Key Study on Global Warming

As the U.N. global climate conference in Katowice, Poland entered its second week Sunday, the non-governmental environmental organization Greenpeace demanded urgent action from world leaders to tackle climate change.

Greenpeace activists projected a message onto the roof of the “Spodek” arena where the COP24 is being held, saying “No Hope Without Climate Action: and “Politicians Talk, Leaders Act.”

Disappointing many of the scientists and delegates at the conference, the United States, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait refused to endorse a landmark study on global warming which was to be the benchmark for future action in curbing the global warming.

The four nations wanted only to “note” but not “welcome” the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change that was released in October, in keeping with the views of the Trump administration. With no consensus on including the report, the idea was dropped.

U.S. President Donald Trump, who has announced he is pulling the United States out of the Paris climate agreement, tweeted Saturday that “people do not want to pay large sums of money … in order to maybe protect the environment.” 

The IPCC’ report said that drastic actions would be needed to achieve the Paris accord’s most ambitious target of keeping global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius. The report warned that the world was far from that target and heading more towards an increase of 3 degrees Celsius.

On Monday, the environmental ministers arrive at COP24 and many delegates hope that they will make every effort to include the IPCC report in the conference agenda.

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


«Бориспіль» повідомляє про складнощі в роботі через туман

Аеропорт «Бориспіль» працює в режимі обмеженої видимості, йдеться в заяві прес-служби. Клієнтів просять перевіряти актуальний час вильоту або прибуття рейсів.

«У зв’язку з ускладненими погодними умовами (туман) та можливим перенесенням часу вильоту та прибуття вашого рейсу просимо перевіряти розклад польотів», – йдеться в оголошенні на сторінці компанії.

За повідомленням, в роботі аеропорту задіяні обидві злітно-посадкові смуги.

Про скасування або перенаправлення рейсів компанія окремо не повідомляє. Однак, Згідно з даними сайту Flightradar24, протягом вечора 9 грудня кілька рейсів, які мали прибути до «Борисполя», були перенаправлені в інші летовища – «Жуляни», Одеський, Харківський і Львівський міжнародні аеропорти.

Ще два рейси замість «Борисполя» були спрямовані до Будапешта і Варшави. Звідти вони пізніше повертаються до «Борисполя» або ж таке повернення заплановане.

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


UK Nerve Agent Survivor Fears Poison Will Soon Kill Him

A British man who was exposed to the deadly nerve agent Novichok said he is struggling with his eyesight and mobility, and fears the poison will kill him within a decade.

Charlie Rowley, 45, fell ill in June near Salisbury, England, after coming into contact with the Soviet-developed nerve agent that was used months earlier to attack former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter. Rowley, Skripal and his daughter survived, but Rowley’s partner Dawn Sturgess, who was also exposed, died in the hospital.

Rowley told the Sunday Mirror newspaper that he was back in the hospital being treated for meningitis. He said he was going blind and unable to use one arm, and said he was “terrified about the future” and what long-term effects the military grade poison would have on him.

“I’m still worried the Novichok could kill me if I get any sort of virus again — it’s on my mind all the time. I’m dreading getting a cold,” he said. “I don’t think I’ll be alive in 10 years. It’s been horrendous.”

Britain accuses Russia of carrying out the poisoning of the Skripals, a claim Moscow denies.

Rowley and Sturgess collapsed after they handled a small bottle containing the nerve agent, believed to have been discarded by the Skripals’ attackers.

Britain charged two alleged Russian military intelligence agents in absentia for the attack. The pair denied their involvement on Russian television.

The Skripals’ poisoning ignited a diplomatic confrontation in which hundreds of envoys were expelled by both Russia and Western nations.

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


В ЗСУ розповіли, скільки платитимуть резервістам і військовозобов’язаним за військові збори

Грошові виплати резервістам та військовозобов’язаним, в тому числі за час проходження навчальних зборів прив’язані до розмірів прожиткового мінімуму для працездатних та мінімальної заробітної плати в поточному році, повідомляють у штабі Сухопутних військ Збройних сил України.

Зокрема за час військових зборів військовозобов’язані та резервісти мають отримати:

добові за кожний день перебування на зборах (не 60 гривень стандартної виплати, від 20% до 50% від цієї суми залежно від військового звання
середній заробіток на підприємствах, в яких працюють призвані на збори, з наступним відшкодуванням цих витрат Міністерством оборони
військовозобов'язаним та резервістам, які не працюють, військові частини виплачують грошове забезпечення в розмірі прожиткового мінімум (1762 грн у 2018 році)

Крім того, резервісти мають право на грошові виплати в обсязі від 1,5 до 2 прожиткових мінімумів залежно від військового звання і одноразове грошове заохочення за підсумками служби в резерві попереднього року (1600 – 3100 гривень).

В штабі повідомляють, що нараховані виплати підлягають оподаткуванню як доходи фізичних осіб (18%), крім того, з них утримується 1,5% військового збору.

Збори оперативного резерву у навчальних центрах Збройних сил України почалися 3 грудня. Міністерство оборони повідомляло, що їхня тривалість не перевищуватиме 20 діб.

Читайте також: Війна з Росією. Кого викликає на збори Генштаб ЗСУ?​

Проведення навчальних зборів було одним із пунктів Указу президента України Петра Порошенка про запровадження воєнного стану.

26 листопада Верховна Рада проголосувала за запровадження воєнного стану терміном на 30 діб у внутрішніх водах Азово-Керченської акваторії та в 10 областях, прилеглих до кордону з Росією, а також із окупованими чи контрольованими нею територіями України та Молдови. Це Вінницька, Луганська, Донецька, Запорізька, Миколаївська, Одеська, Сумська, Харківська, Чернігівська, Херсонська.

Це сталося після того, як 25 листопада російські прикордонники у Керченській протоці відкрили вогонь по трьох українських кораблях і захопили їх. Підконтрольні Кремлю суди в Криму арештували 24 моряків на два місяці. Зараз полонені військові ВМС України перебувають у слідчих ізоляторах в Москві. Українська влада визнає їх військовополоненими.

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


Сенцову три тижні не передають посилку з теплими речима – правозахисниця

Український режисер і політв’язень Олег Сенцов, якого утримують у російській колонії в Лабитнангі, не отримав посилку, яку йому надіслали ще минулого місяця, заявляє російська правозахисниця Тетяна Щур. Вона оприлюднила фото, на якому її чоловік Микола Щур збирає речі для передачі Сенцову, і розповіла, що колонія їх не приймає.

За її словами, посилку за попереднім погодженням із Сенцовим йому надіслали 12 листопада, 17-го вона надійшла до поштового відділення у Лабитнангі, була відправлена до Салехарду, звідки її повернули 20-го числа. Однак у колонії її не передають, каже правозахисниця.

«Пояснювати, навіщо ув’язненому за Полярним колом потрібні теплі речі, продукти і фільми, підібрані друзями, нормальним людям не треба. Але керівництво колонії, вочевидь, цього не розуміє. Чи, навпаки, розуміє надто добре», – міркує жінка.

Вона пояснює, що максимальна вага посилок, які можна передавати в’язням, прив’язана до граничної ваги, встановленої «Поштою Росії», тобто становить 50 кілограм, тож про порушення правил передачі не йдеться.

Правозахисниця додає, що вже подала скарги на сайтах президента Росії, Федеральної служби виконання покарань і Генеральної прокуратури. Скарги переслали до управління ФСВП Ямало-Ненецького Автономного округу, до якого входить Лабитнангі, але відповідей на них наразі немає.

«Єдино милосердною виявилася «Пошта Росії». У Челябінську в нас взяли заяву на подовження терміну зберігання, а в Лабитнангі співчутливо повідомили, що терміни зберігання посилок у колонію подовжуються автоматично з двох передбачених тижнів до місяця. «Не хвилюйтесь, отримає вашу посилку», – сказала мені мила жінка. Вочевидь, вона знає, що посилки там не вручаються місяцями», – каже Щур.

Читайте також: Сенцов одужує, але все ще перебуває в медсанчастині – російський режисер​

Вона додає, що правозахисники готові йти до суду, аби довести право в’язнів отримувати посилки вчасно і згідно з законом.

Олег Сенцов протестував проти анексії Криму, в березні 2014 року його затримали російські силовики, звинуватили в тому, що він нібито хотів підірвати пам’ятник Леніну в Сімферополі, підпалити офіс колишньої Партії регіонів. На суді він заявив про тортури і політичне переслідування. Йому дали 20 років в’язниці.

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


France’s Macron to Address Nation in Wake of Violent Protests

French President Emmanuel Macron will address the nation on Monday in response to massive, often violent rallies staged by “yellow-vest” protesters across the country for the past four weekends.

Before the speech Monday evening, Macron plans to meet with union officials, local lawmakers and business leaders for talks on formulating a response to the protests that have rocked the country during the holiday season.

Workers across France Sunday cleaned up the debris from protesters who threw rocks, burned cars and vandalized businesses through the weekend.

Earlier Sunday, France’s foreign minister urged U.S. President Donald Trump not to interfere in French politics, following Trump’s tweets on weeks of protests in Paris in which he said:

“Very sad day & night in Paris. Maybe it’s time to end the ridiculous and extremely expensive Paris Agreement and return money back to the people in the form of lower taxes? The U.S. was way ahead of the curve on that and the only major country where emissions went down last year! ”

An earlier tweet from Trump insinuated that protesters in Paris sided with his decision to leave the Paris agreement — a landmark 2015 agreement between over one hundred countries to combat climate change.

“The Paris Agreement isn’t working out so well for Paris. Protests and riots all over France. People do not want to pay large sums of money, much to third world countries (that are questionably run), in order to maybe protect the environment. Chanting “We Want Trump!” Love France.” he wrote.

Nearly 2,000 people were arrested Saturday across France in the latest round of “yellow-vest” protests.

Nationwide, the interior ministry says some 136,000 people rallied against France’s high-cost of living. Protesters also expressed their dismay with the presidency of Emmanuel Macron.

Protests were held in a number of cities besides Paris, including Marseilles, Bordeaux, Lyon and Toulouse.

On Saturday, French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said violent outbreaks in Paris were “under control” despite ongoing disorderly acts he declared “totally unacceptable.”

France closed the Eiffel Tower and other tourist landmarks and mobilized tens of thousands of security forces for the fourth week of violent demonstrations.

Many shops in Paris were boarded up before Saturday’s protests to avoid being smashed or looted, and police cordoned off many of the city’s broad boulevards.

President Macron made an unannounced visit Friday night to a group of anti-riot security officers outside Paris to thank them for their work.

The protests erupted in November over a fuel tax increase, which was part of Macron’s plan to combat global warming.

French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe called for new talks Saturday with representatives of the “yellow vest” movement. He vowed the government would address their concerns over rising living costs.

“The president will speak, and will propose measures that will feed this dialogue,” Philippe said in a televised statement.

Since the unrest began in November, four people have been killed in protest-related accidents.

 

While Macron has since abandoned the fuel tax hike, protesters have made new demands to address other economic issues hurting workers, retirees and students.

Government officials are concerned the repeated weekly violence could weaken the economy and raise doubts about the government’s survival.

The “yellow vest” movement was named after the safety jackets French motorists are required to keep in their vehicles, which the protesters wear at demonstrations.

The weeks of protests have exposed intense resentment among non-city residents who feel that Macron, a former investment banker, is out of touch with struggling middle-class and blue-collar workers.

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


More Than Half the World’s Population is Using the Internet

The International Telecommunication Union reports that for the first time in history, half of the global population is using the internet. A new report finds by the end of the year, 3.9 billion people worldwide will be online.

The report finds access to and use of information and communication technologies around the world is trending upwards. It notes most internet users are in developed countries, with more than 80 percent of their populations online. But it says internet use is steadily growing in developing countries, increasing from 7.7 percent in 2005 to 45.3 percent this year.

The International Telecommunication Union says Africa is the region with the strongest growth, where the percentage of people using the internet has increased from just over two percent in 2005 to nearly 25 percent in 2018.

The lowest growth rates, it says, are in Europe and the Americas, with the lowest usage found in the Asia-Pacific region.

In addition to data on internet usage, newly released statistics show mobile access to basic telecommunication services is becoming more predominant. ITU Senior Statistician, Esperanza Magpantay says access to higher speed mobile and fixed broadband also is growing.

“So, there is almost 96 percent of the population who are now covered by mobile population signal of which 90 percent are covered by 3G access. So, this is a high figure, and this helps explain why we have this 51 percent of the population now using the internet,” she said.

With the growth in mobile broadband, Magpantay says there has been an upsurge in the number of people using the internet through their mobile devices.

The ITU says countries that are hooked into the digital economy do better in their overall economic well-being and competitiveness. Unfortunately, it says the cost of accessing telecommunication networks remains too high and unaffordable for many.

It says prices must be brought down to make the digital economy a reality for the half the world’s people who do not, as yet, use the internet.

 

 

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


Paris Cleans Up After Latest Riot; Nearly 1,800 Arrested

Nearly 1,800 people were arrested Saturday across France in the latest round of “yellow vest” protests.

Nationwide, the Interior Ministry says some 136,000 people rallied against France’s high-cost of living. Protesters also expressed their dismay with the presidency of Emmanuel Macron.

Protests were mounted in a number of cities besides Paris, including Marseilles, Bordeaux, Lyon and Toulouse.

The ministry said Sunday 1,723 people were arrested nationwide, with 1,220 of them ordered held in custody.

Parisian police said they made 1,082 arrests Saturday, a sharp increase from last week’s 412 arrests.

Meanwhile, tourist destinations, including the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre Museum, reopened and workers cleaned up broken glass Sunday. 

The man who unleashed the anger, President Emmanuel Macron, broke his silence to tweet his appreciation for the police overnight, but pressure mounted on him to propose new solutions to calm the anger dividing France.

On Saturday, French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said violent outbreaks in Paris were “under control” despite ongoing disorderly acts he declared “totally unacceptable.”

French police supported by armored vehicles fired tear gas at yellow-vested protesters on the Champs Elysees.

Castaner estimated 10,000 demonstrators had taken to Parisian streets.

He said 135 people had been injured, including 17 police officers.

France closed the Eiffel Tower and other tourist landmarks and mobilized tens of thousands of security forces for the fourth week of violent demonstrations.

Many shops in Paris were boarded up before Saturday’s protests to avoid being smashed or looted, and police cordoned off many of the city’s broad boulevards.

Despite what Castaner said were “exceptional” security measures, protesters still smashed store windows and clashed with police.

More than 89,000 police were deployed nationwide, an increase from 65,000 last weekend.

Police in central Paris removed any materials from the streets that could be used as weapons or projectiles during the demonstrations, including street furniture at outdoor cafes.

Macron made an unannounced visit Friday night to a group of anti-riot security officers outside Paris to thank them for their work.

The protests erupted in November over a fuel tax increase, which was part of Macron’s plan to combat global warming.

French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe called for new talks Saturday with representatives of the “yellow vest” movement. He vowed the government would address their concerns over rising living costs.

“The president will speak, and will propose measures that will feed this dialogue,” Philippe said in a televised statement.

 

WATCH: Clashes and Hundreds Detained in France in ‘Yellow Vest’ Protests

U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted Saturday that the Paris Agreement, a global effort to reduce global warming beginning in 2020, “isn’t working out so well for Paris” and that “People do not want to pay large sums of money … in order to protect the environment.”

Since the unrest began in November, four people have been killed in protest-related accidents.

While Macron has since abandoned the fuel tax hike, protesters have made new demands to address other economic issues hurting workers, retirees and students.

Government officials are concerned the repeated weekly violence could weaken the economy and raise doubts about the government’s survival.

Officials are also concerned about far-right, anarchist and anti-capitalist groups like Black Bloc that have attached themselves to the “yellow vest” movement.

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


World Marks Anti-Corruption Day

Corruption costs the world economy $2.6 trillion each year, according to the United Nations, which is marking International Anti-Corruption Day on Sunday.

“Corruption is a serious crime that can undermine social and economic development in all societies. No country, region or community is immune,” the United Nations said.

The cost of $2.6 trillion represents more than 5 percent of global GDP.

The world body said that $1 trillion of the money stolen annually through corruption is in the form of bribes.

Patricia Moreira, the managing director of Transparency International, told VOA that about a quarter of the world’s population has paid a bribe when trying to access a public service over the past year, according to data from the Global Corruption Barometer.

Moreira said it is important to have such a day as International Anti-Corruption Day because it provides “a really tremendous opportunity to focus attention precisely on the challenge that is posed by corruption around the world.”

​Anti-corruption commitments

To mark the day, the United States called on all countries to implement their international anti-corruption commitments including through the U.N. Convention against Corruption.

In a statement Friday, the U.S. State Department said that corruption facilitates crime and terrorism, as well as undermines economic growth, the rule of law and democracy.

“Ultimately, it endangers our national security. That is why, as we look ahead to International Anticorruption Day on Dec. 9, we pledge to continue working with our partners to prevent and combat corruption worldwide,” the statement said.

Moreira said that data about worldwide corruption can make the phenomena understandable but still not necessarily “close to our lives.” For that, we need to hear everyday stories about people impacted by corruption and understand that it “is about our daily lives,” she added.

She said those most impacted by corruption are “the most vulnerable people — so it’s usually women, it’s usually poor people, the most marginalized people in the world.”

The United Nations Development Program notes that in developing countries, funds lost to corruption are estimated at 10 times the amount of official development assistance.

What can be done to fight corruption?

The United Nations designated Dec. 9 as International Anti-Corruption Day in 2003, coinciding with the adoption of the United Nations Convention against Corruption by the U.N. General Assembly.

The purpose of the day is to raise awareness about corruption and put pressure on governments to take action against it.

Tackling the issue

Moreira said to fight corruption effectively it must be tackled from different angles. For example, she said that while it is important to have the right legislation in place to curb corruption, governments must also have mechanisms to enforce that legislation. She said those who engage in corruption must be held accountable.

“Fighting corruption is about providing people with a more sustainable world, with a world where social justice is something more of our reality than what it has been until today,” she said.

Moreira said change must come from a joint effort from governments, public institutions, the private sector and civil society.

The U.S. Statement Department said in its Friday statement that it pledges “to continue working with our partners to prevent and combat corruption worldwide.”

It noted that the United States, through the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development, helps partner nations “build transparent, accountable institutions and strengthen criminal justice systems that hold the corrupt accountable.”

Moreira said that it is important for the world to see that there are results to the fight against corruption.

“Then we are showing the world with specific examples that we can fight against corruption, [that] yes there are results. And if we work together, then it is something not just that we would wish for, but actually something that can be translated into specific results and changes to the world,” she said.

VOA’s Elizabeth Cherneff contributed to this report.

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!


Armenia Holds Snap Election for Parliament

Armenians are casting their votes in early parliamentary elections Sunday.

Reformist leader Nikol Pashinian, 43, swept to power in May after weeks of anti-government protests that forced the sudden resignation of Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan, who was also a former president of Armenia.

Sargsyan’s ruling Republican Party, however, blocked Pashinian’s bid to become prime minister, resulting in more protests. The Republican Party then decided to back Pashinian for what it said was the good of the nation.

Pashinian became prime minister, but recently stepped down so parliament could be dissolved for the early election. He remains Armenia’s acting prime minister.

Analysts expect him to be re-instated in office, with his My Step alliance in control of parliament.

Pashinian, a former newspaper editor who had been imprisoned for his activism, has promised to maintain close ties with Russia and fight corruption. He has also pledged to “step up cooperation with the United States and European Union.”