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Archive for June 18th, 2007

After considering the state in which some political prisoners are in Cuba (for example, this same week we have known about Guido Sigler Amaya’s condition which is very grave but does not have any kind of medical support), we have known today that:

  1. European Union FM are asking to renew the dialogue with Cuba. Only United Kingdom, the Checz Republic, Ireland or Belgium have opposed to it. In the text they include in the dialogue, subjects like political sphere, human rights, economical, scientific and cultural questions and “the support for a peaceful transition in Cuba“. They also maintain that the mutual relationship should be based on “reciprocity and no-discrimination“. Now, can someone tell me how on earth Europe was discriminating Cuba before? Not maintaining good relations with a dictator is not discriminating, it’s just a way to tell the world you oppose him firmly.
  2. Contrary to all the promises of reform issued last year, the proposal released today by Council President Luis Alfonso de Alba targets Israel for permanent indictment under a special agenda item: “Human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories,” which includes “Human rights violations and implications of the Israeli occupation of Palestine and other occupied Arab territories”; and “Right to self-determination of the Palestinian people.” No other situation in the world is singled out — not genocide in Sudan, not child slavery in China, nor the persecution of democracy dissidents in Egypt and elsewhere. Moreover, the council will entrench its one-sided investigative mandate of “Israeli violations of international law”—the only one not subject to regular review after a set term—by renewing it “until the end of the occupation.” To sum up, the UN Human Rights Council is going to punish Israel but not Belarus, Cuba, China or Iran.

My question is: what do these organizations, which supposedly are fighting for Human Rights, do to really support them?

I answer: nothing. They are only bashing democracies, where they know their pathetic speeches can have some effect in part of the population. But not doing so against the dictatorships where they are not going to receive anything but disdain and reproaches. And we do not want that from China, Saudi Arabia, Cuba or Iran, do we?

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Uff, it’s too early, isn’t it? But, of course, do they need an excuse?

EU to Resume Direct Aid – Wall Street Journal

Telegraph.co.uk

EU to Resume Direct Aid

Wall Street Journal – 21 minutes ago

AP LUXEMBOURG — The European Union said Monday it will resume direct aid to the new Palestinian government of Prime Minister Salam Fayyad and it urged Israel to restore the transfer of tax revenue to his West Bank administration.

Israel is already giving aid to Hamas’ Gaza, and USA has promised to do so, IF Palestinian Government parts away from Hamas…

Weep for Gaza Los Angeles Times

EU resumes aid to Palestinian Government Times Online

The European Union is to resume direct financial aid to the Palestinian Authority for the first time in 18 months in a bid to prop up the new government in the West Bank.

Javier Solana, the bloc’s foreign policy chief, said today that the move would send a message of support to the embattled President, Mahmoud Abbas, of the secular Fatah party, who sacked Hamas after the Islamists’ military takeover of the Gaza Strip.

Mr Abbas dismissed the fundamentalists’ leader Ismail Haniya as Prime Minister and appointed Salam Fayad, a political moderate, to the post at the end of last week. Hamas, however, has denounced his decision as a “coup” and announced that it would not recognise the administration.

The West has boycotted the Palestinian Government since Hamas was elected to power in January last year. The Islamists have rejected calls to recognise neighbouring Israel’s right to exist, renounce terrorism, and acknowledge previously signed interim peace agreements.

Mr Solana announced the intention to end the boycott as he spoke to reporters before a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Luxembourg.

“There will be a direct relationship, economically also with the Government,” he said. “There will be a part of the money that will be direct.”

The EU foreign policy chief added that the bloc had confidence in Mr Fayyad, the US-trained economist and former Palestinian Finance Minister, to handle the funds.

No doubt, part of it will go through the account that, when he was Minister of Finance, he had established and he will have kept as Prime Minister, so it will be a direct relationship with the Government,” Mr Solana said.

Despite refusing to have any dealings with Hamas, Mr Solana confirmed that the EU would also try to find a way to provide humanitarian aid to increasingly impoverished 1.4 million residents of the Gaza Strip, who have been largely cut off from the outside world since the Islamists seized power in a volley of gun battles which killed more than 100 mostly Fatah-affiliated fighters last week.

Marvellous…


BBC NEWS | Middle East | Key powers back Abbas government

Key powers back Abbas government

Key international powers have publicly backed the new Palestinian Authority government, offering aid and support to an administration without Hamas.

US President Bush phoned Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas pledging to work with his new government, aides said.

The EU said it would “immediately” normalise ties with the government and also resume direct aid, while Israel said the new cabinet was a “partner”.

Mr Abbas sacked the previous government after Hamas seized control of Gaza.

In a separate development on Monday, one Palestinian was killed and several injured after Palestinian gunmen and Israeli soldiers exchanges of fire at the Erez crossing, the Israeli rescue service and Palestinian medics said.

The crossing is the main point for people travelling between Israel and Gaza.

‘Genuine partner’

In a 15-minute phone call with Mr Bush, Mr Abbas told the US president that the time was now right to push for new peace talks.

The US Consul-General in Jerusalem, Jacob Walles, met the new Prime Minister Salam Fayyad on Monday to explain how the US could offer practical support to the new administration.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who is to meet Mr Bush in Washington on Tuesday, said he considered the new Palestinian government a “genuine partner”.

And speaking at an EU meeting in Luxembourg, Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni confirmed that up to $800m (£400m) of frozen tax revenues held by Israel would now be transferred to the Palestinian Authority.

“We are willing to work with those who support the two-state solution -those who understand and accept the right of Israel to exist,” she said.

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From Google Blogoscoped:

The Google cache of web pages is one of those features known to be widely blocked for Chinese users thanks to China Mainland internet service providers, outside of the responsibility of Google. The missing “cache” link however is now in the responsibility of Google. It’s another form of self-censorship Google has committed to in China, and the reasoning for this may be similar to previous forms of Google.cn self-censorship; Google may argue they aim to provide a better user experience with that feature removal, as people clicking on the cache link before weren’t ending up on the actual web page cache. This also means that indirectly – and whether or not the Chinese gov’t actively pressured Google to remove the feature – it’s another step in Google.cn becoming the kind of search engine the Chinese government (more precisely, its ministry of information) would like to see. Through control of one side of the technology – ISPs – the gov’t exerts indirect control over Google, as going by Google’s logic of “we need to shield Google users in China from broken links/ services“**, they can block certain features of Google to then have Google remove them on their end, too.

h/t Status of Chinese People.

The Google slogan: Don’t be evil:

Don’t be evil. Much has been written about Google’s slogan, but we really try to live by it, particularly in the ranks of management. As in every organization, people are passionate about their views. But nobody throws chairs at Google, unlike management practices used at some other well-known technology companies. We foster to create an atmosphere of tolerance and respect, not a company full of yes men.

This is a looks-like-to-be a marketing campaign from Google in MSNBC.

See more about it in Wikipedia:

Some products and actions by Google are seen by some to be in contradiction to their Don’t Be Evil ethic. These include allowing advertisers to make nominative use of competitors’ trademarked keywords in AdWords advertisements, lack of diligence to prevent click fraud,[citation needed] copyright issues related to their Google Print Library Project, the inclusion of ethically-questionable content in Google Groups (computer intrusion instructions and password trading, for example), and the exclusion of some content from local search results in Germany and China that is restricted by local governments. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch both have strongly condemned Google’s China policy[1], calling it a form of self-censorship.

Read also: China, you’ve got some explaining to do. Debbie discusses why China should be denied the Olympic Games. A good reason also would be the slaves who have been discovered lately.

Related posts:

Yahoo and Internet censorship.

Google: legal problems with YouTube and losing share in China.

China: Internet cos. must obey its laws.

Tiananmen.

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