Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα freedom. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων
Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα freedom. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων

Δευτέρα, Ιανουαρίου 19, 2015

EU to work closer with Turkey,Egypt and Gulf countries to combat terrorism

EU leaders have agreed on sharing intelligence with not only member states, but also with other countries, including Turkey,Egypt and Gulf countries to combat terrorism, it was announced Monday.

The decision was made during EU foreign ministers' meeting in Brussels that discussed ways to combat terrorism in Europe and other parts of the world. The meeting comes in the aftermath of the deadly attack on French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and anti-terrorism raids in Belgium.

After the meeting, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini told reporters about measures to curb terrorism. "We are looking at specific projects to launch in the coming weeks with some specific countries to increase the level of cooperation on counter-terrorism, and I would name Turkey, Egypt, Yemen, Algeria and the Gulf countries.''

Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom said ''everyone thinks it’s important to engage with Turkey.''

''Turkey is central in so many ways and can play a constructive role if they use their position and setting in the right way,'' Wallstrom added.

Passenger name records
EU leaders also decided to call on the European Parliament to work on implementation of the Passenger Name Record system, which would require EU member states to share information of airline passengers with other countries.

Currently, up to 16 EU countries use the record system without an EU framework.

The legislation was proposed by European regulators in 2011, but later rejected by EU Parliament’s Civil Liberties committee in April 2013. Critics argue that the record system interferes with the right to privacy and protection of personal data.

Improving communication with Arabs

Mogherini said another strategy on developing cooperation on security issues would be to improve communication with the Arab-speaking population in EU and other parts of the world.

''We need to improve our capacity to read Arabic, speak Arabic and listen to messages coming from the Arab world,'' Mogherini said. ''This is basic communication strategy we need to implement.''

Her comments came after calling for a stronger alliance with Arab countries amid deadly terror attacks and arrests across Europe. Mogherini also met Arab League Secretary-General Nabil el-Araby on Monday.

''The threat is not only the one we faced in Paris, but spreading in other parts of the world starting from Muslim countries,'' Mogherini said. ''We need to strengthen our way of cooperating, first of all, with Arab countries.''

"Good cooperation"

Mogherini said an alliance between Europe and Arab countries was needed because Muslims were mostly affected by terrorist attacks.

Mogherini said ''I've always said it is not an issue between Europe or the West and Islam."

"Terrorism and terrorist attacks are targeting most Muslims in the world, so we need an alliance, we need a dialogue there to face the issue together.''

''What we need to do is face terrorism while respecting Islam," she added.

U.K. Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond told reporters ahead of the meeting: ''We have very good cooperation with our partners across the Arab world in counter-terrorism."

"The Muslim countries of the world are the ones who have suffered the greatest burden of terrorism. They will continue to be in the front line and we have to work closely with them to protect both those countries and European Union countries," Hammond added.

  http://www.aa.com.tr/en/headline/452668--eu-to-work-closer-with-turkey-to-combat-terrorism
19/1/15

Τετάρτη, Ιουλίου 16, 2014

China accuses Britain of interference over Hong Kong

BEIJING: China on Wednesday accused London of interfering in its internal affairs after British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg met two leading Hong Kong pro-democracy activists urging greater freedoms from Beijing.
China "lodged solemn protests" with Britain over Tuesday's meetings with Martin Lee, founder of Hong Kong's opposition Democratic Party, and Anson Chan, the former number two in the city's government, the official Xinhua news agency reported.
"What Britain has done is interference in China's internal affairs. China strongly opposes it," said Beijing's foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei.
"Hong Kong's affairs fall within China's internal affairs. China firmly opposes any interference in Hong Kong affairs by any country under whatever pretext," said Hong.
Discontent in the former British colony, which was handed back to China in 1997, is at its highest level in years, notably over Beijing's insistence that it vet candidates before the vote for the city's next leader in 2017.

Under the "one country, two systems" deal at the time of the handover, the semi-autonomous city has guaranteed liberties not seen on the Chinese mainland, including freedom of speech and the right to protest.

But concerns are growing that these freedoms are being eroded.
A string of attacks on media workers has raised fears for press freedom, while Beijing published a "white paper" last month on Hong Kong's future that was widely seen as a warning to the city not to overstep its bounds.

Chan and Lee appeared before a British parliamentary committee on Wednesday, urging London not to turn a blind eye to "attacks" on freedoms in its former colony.

The outspoken campaigners told the Foreign Affairs Committee that London had been failing in its responsibility towards democracy in Hong Kong.
"It is vital that the British government does not turn a blind eye to current developments in Hong Kong," Chan told the committee members.

The pair heavily criticised a British parliamentary report earlier this month in which then-British foreign secretary William Hague said the city's unique constitutional framework has worked well and that there was no "perfect model" for electoral reform.
Hong Kong's current leader Leung Chun-ying was chosen by a pro-Beijing committee.
An unofficial referendum on how the next leader should be chosen drew a massive turnout of almost 800,000 people last month, angering Beijing.
It was followed by a huge pro-democracy march on July 1 which organisers said was the biggest protest since the 1997 handover.

Τετάρτη, Μαΐου 28, 2014

Obama makes defiant defense of US restraint. Terrorism remains biggest threat to US

US President Barack Obama mounted a defiant defense of his global leadership Wednesday, rebuking critics who see him as weak but warning that not every global threat justifies a US military response.

In a major speech at the West Point military academy, Obama denied US power had ebbed under his watch, after he withdrew troops from Iraq and is doing the same in Afghanistan.

He also pledged to ramp up support for Syrian rebels, vowed to stand up to Russia over Ukraine and promised to make drone strikes against terror suspects more transparent.



He vowed to hold China accountable to international "rules of the road" in the South China Sea and elsewhere.

"To say that we have an interest in pursuing peace and freedom beyond our borders is not to say that every problem has a military solution," Obama said.

"Since World War II, some of our most costly mistakes came not from our restraint, but from our willingness to rush into military adventures - without thinking through the consequences," Obama said, in an apparent reference to the Iraq war, which he has branded a disaster.

The president's speech came with his foreign policy, which was once seen as a political asset, under assault from critics who believe he is being outmaneuvered by strongmen like Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"Here's my bottom line: America must always lead on the world stage. If we don't, no one else will. The military ... is, and always will be, the backbone of that leadership."

Obama was particularly exercised by those who complain he should have deployed the US military in Syria or made a more robust strategic response to Russia's annexation of Ukraine, or who complain that he has left Iraq or Afghanistan to fend for themselves.

"Tough talk often draws headlines but war rarely conforms to slogans," Obama said.

"But US military action cannot be the only, or even primary, component of our leadership in every instance.

"Just because we have the best hammer does not mean that every problem is a nail," Obama told a graduation ceremony at the college.

"And because the costs associated with military action are so high, you should expect every civilian leader - and especially your commander in chief - to be clear about how that awesome power should be used."

Obama said he was "haunted" by the deaths of American servicemen under his watch - including some who attended previous commencement ceremonies he had given at West Point.

Obama also made an implicit defense of his decision to call off military strikes on Syria at the last minute last year to punish chemical weapons strikes.

Critics at home and abroad warned that the decision left dangerous questions about whether Washington would stand up to "red lines" elsewhere in the world.

"I would betray my duty to you, and to the country we love, if I sent you into harm's way simply because I saw a problem somewhere in the world that needed fixing, or because I was worried about critics who think military intervention is the only way for America to avoid looking weak," he told the graduates.

Yu Wanli, a professor of international relations at Peking University, said the US military still enjoys supremacy globally, and Washington's military spending accounts for nearly half the world's total.

"As early as in 2008, Obama said during his campaign that he opposed a foreign policy that is dependant on military intervention," Yu said. "The view has been carried on till today. It was reflected in Obama's dealing with the crises in Syria and Ukraine."

In his speech, Obama also said that terrorism remained the biggest national security threat to the US and unveiled a new $5 billion fund to equip and train allies on the front lines of the struggle against terrorism, for instance in Africa.

He also defended his decision to leave nearly 10,000 troops in Afghanistan for a year after combat troops leave at the end of this year, and to gradually reduce the presence to a detachment of troops at the US Embassy in Kabul by the end of 2016, just before he leaves office. 

 [globaltimes.cn]
28-29/5/14

Παρασκευή, Φεβρουαρίου 14, 2014

UN human rights commissioner criticizes Turkey’s Internet law

The Office of the United Nations’ High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has criticized Turkey for its controversial Internet law, saying it may lead to breaches of human rights.

A statement released by the OHCHR on Feb. 14 criticized the law, which was allowing Turkey’s telecommunications authority (TİB) to block websites without first seeking a court order. The law was adopted Feb. 6 by Parliament and is currently awaiting President Abdullah Gül’s approval. 



“We are concerned legislative amendments adopted by the Turkish Parliament last week regulating the use of the Internet may lead to breaches of human rights, in particular the right to freedom of expression and opinion, and the right to privacy,” the statement said.

Law 6518 will also require Internet service providers to store data on web users’ activities for two years and make it available to the authorities upon request without a judicial order, the statement recalled, adding that Internet service providers will face severe penalties if they fail to remove content deemed to be illegal.

“Even before the amendments, Law 5651, enacted in May 2007, placed broad restrictions on Internet use. Since the law came into force, approximately 37,000 websites have reportedly been denied operation by court orders and administrative blocking orders,” the statement said.

The OHCHR said the law was incompatible with Turkey’s international human rights obligations, in particular those related to freedom of expression and the right to privacy.

  • On Feb. 8, a group of people gathered in several Turkish cities, protesting the amendment’s passing in Parliament. The protests, especially in Istanbul’s Taksim Square, were met with harsh police crackdowns. 

  • The OHCHR called on Turkish authorities “to ensure the police force does not resort to excessive use of force and other human rights violations while performing their duties during demonstrations.” 
  • “Acts of sporadic violence or other punishable acts committed by some individuals in the context of peaceful protests should not be used by the authorities to deprive others of their right to freedom of peaceful assembly,” it said. 
 http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/un-human-rights-commissioner-criticizes-turkeys-internet-law.aspx?pageID=238&nID=62505&NewsCatID=339
14/2/14

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