Escenarios Regionales

Reflecting on the world of today

98 notes &

theatlantic:

In Focus: Afghanistan, December 2013

Western forces continue their long withdrawal from Afghanistan, scheduled to be complete within a year, save for a small number NATO advisers and security teams. Recent reports and evaluations of the state of affairs in Afghanistan indicate a bleak immediate future, despite billions of dollars of foreign aid. Human rights groups report that violence against women is intensifying, malnutrition is mysteriously on the rise nationwide, economic growth has dropped sharply, and continued foreign aid is threatened by possible instability post-withdrawal. Gathered here are recent images from this war-weary country, part of the ongoing series here on Afghanistan.

Read more.

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736 notes &

fotojournalismus:

The 19th Ghat Festival in Libya | December 2013

In the annual event, Tuareg tribes from the region and tourists meet to celebrate Tuareg traditional culture, folklore and heritage in the ancient city of Ghat, lies in the south-west corner of Libya. 

Photos by Esam Omran Al-Fetori/Reuters

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47 notes &

nationalpost:

U.S. to test drones in six states for planned expansion of civilian use, including farmers and businesses
The Federal Aviation Administration announced six states on Monday that will develop test sites for drones, a critical next step for the unmanned aircraft’s march into U.S. skies.
The agency said Alaska, Nevada, New York, North Dakota, Texas and Virginia as states that will host research sites.
Drones have been mainly used by the military, but governments, businesses, farmers and others are making plans to join the market. Many universities are starting or expanding drone programs.
“These test sites will give us valuable information about how best to ensure the safe introduction of this advanced technology into our nation’s skies,” Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in a statement. (Photo: Handout/Amazon)

nationalpost:

U.S. to test drones in six states for planned expansion of civilian use, including farmers and businesses

The Federal Aviation Administration announced six states on Monday that will develop test sites for drones, a critical next step for the unmanned aircraft’s march into U.S. skies.

The agency said Alaska, Nevada, New York, North Dakota, Texas and Virginia as states that will host research sites.

Drones have been mainly used by the military, but governments, businesses, farmers and others are making plans to join the market. Many universities are starting or expanding drone programs.

“These test sites will give us valuable information about how best to ensure the safe introduction of this advanced technology into our nation’s skies,” Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in a statement. (Photo: Handout/Amazon)

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1,497 notes &

latimes:

2013’s protests and demonstrations

From the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil, the capital of the Ukraine and Egypt following the furor over the removal of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, the demand to be heard, and unrest over political injustices was far from quiet over the past year.

See the rest of our selections here.

Photos: Sedat Suna, Abed Al Hashlamoun / EPA, Felipe Dana / Associated Press, Sergei Supinsky / AFP/Getty Images

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456 notes &

fotojournalismus:

Morocco to Spain: A desperate journey

Yahya Khedr has travelled for more than two years, through five countries and with six forged passports to get his family from the war-ravaged Syrian city of Homs to Europe.

"People make it to Melilla hoping to find Europe," said Khedr, who before his country’s war owned a successful European truck-parts import business. "But here, it’s an open-air jail."

Armed guards and razor wire lining the 12-km (7.5-mile) frontier around the town have long discouraged Africans fleeing poverty and conflict from seeing Melilla as a gateway to Europe, 180 km (110 miles) away across open water.

But desperation has driven hundred of Syrians like Khedr to brave long journeys - and Moroccan crime gangs that prey on migrants - to fetch up at the gates, turning the port town of 80,000 into a new pressure point for waves of destitute people struggling to reach the safety and prosperity of Europe.

As the United Nations marked International Migrants Day on December 18, 2013 drawing attention to governments’ obligations toward people on the move, European Union leaders were preparing for a summit in Brussels on Thursday and Friday that is likely to approve tougher ways to keep immigrants out. Before an EU summit in October more than 360 people drowned within sight of Lampedusa, an Italian island off Tunisia that has long been a magnet for migrants.

The EU found over 72,000 people entering the bloc illegally last year, including a fivefold rise in Syrians, to 8,000.

While the likes of Yahya Khedr managed to sneak his family into the town, and so to its hostel for refugees, by using fake passports, hundreds of less well-off people, mostly Africans from south of the Sahara, camp outside, looking for a chance.

"In our countries, we live with less than one dollar a day," said Serge, 30, from Cameroon, who has been surviving on the hillside outside Melilla for months. "Africa needs to be fixed if the immigration is to slow down. If nothing is done, it will only increase."

Spain, where more than one worker in four is out of a job, has responded by reinforcing Melilla’s 6-metre (20-foot) border fence with razor wire. That drew criticism from human rights groups when migrants trying to climb over it were left slashed and hanging on the barrier.

Yahya Khedr is despairing of ever getting there, however.

Three years ago, Khedr, now 43, was living well from his business importing European truck parts to Syria. He would spend several months a year in Murcia, in southern Spain, where he also owned a bar and ran his trading business. He travelled elsewhere in Europe, too, taking his family to Disneyland in Paris or visiting a daughter who lives in Italy.

Now, much of his home city of Homs is rubble. Some of the first bombing of the civil war in 2011 destroyed his house and Khedr joined a Syrian refugee exodus now 2.3 million strong.

Holding a Spanish residence permit for himself only, he and the family flew and drove via Lebanon, Egypt, Libya and Algeria to Morocco. There he bought forged Moroccan passports for his wife and children to get them into Melilla in mid-October under Spanish rules that allow entry to Moroccans living nearby. Typically, Syrian refugees say, Moroccan gangs charge $1,500 or more for a passport. Khedr did not say what he paid.

His family now live with about 900 other migrants in the low-rise compound that forms Melilla’s immigration holding center - designed to house little more than half that number.

He himself saves money by living for $12 a day in a hotel in the nearby Moroccan town of Nador. Using his Spanish permit, he is able to travel every week to visit his family in Melilla.

With no sign of being allowed to cross over to the Spanish mainland, however, Khedr now wonders whether he might even start heading back home: “It’s a catastrophe,” he said. “The Europeans say they’re weeping for Syria but it’s all fake.” — Read More

Photos by Juan Medina/Reuters

Filed under africa europe immigration morocco spain

75 notes &

reuters:

Chile’s new president promises 50 reforms in 100 days:
Michelle Bachelet won Chile’s presidential elections with about 62 percent of voter support on Sunday, the highest share for any presidential candidate since the country returned to democratic elections in 1989.
Tax reform, which includes raising corporate taxes to 25 percent from 20 percent, is likely to be the first goal for Bachelet. Education and health reforms are next. Good-quality schooling is generally only available to those who can afford to pay for it; massive student protests hurt the popularity of outgoing conservative President Sebastian Pinera. If Bachelet waters down her promises or if she faces challenges in Congress, she could face more protests herself. 
As well as an ambitious social spending program, Bachelet pledged to reduce the deficit from 1 percent of gross domestic product to zero by 2018.
Read: Chile’s Bachelet promises reforms after landslide election win

Photo: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado

reuters:

Chile’s new president promises 50 reforms in 100 days:

Michelle Bachelet won Chile’s presidential elections with about 62 percent of voter support on Sunday, the highest share for any presidential candidate since the country returned to democratic elections in 1989.

Tax reform, which includes raising corporate taxes to 25 percent from 20 percent, is likely to be the first goal for Bachelet. Education and health reforms are next. Good-quality schooling is generally only available to those who can afford to pay for it; massive student protests hurt the popularity of outgoing conservative President Sebastian Pinera. If Bachelet waters down her promises or if she faces challenges in Congress, she could face more protests herself.

As well as an ambitious social spending program, Bachelet pledged to reduce the deficit from 1 percent of gross domestic product to zero by 2018.

Read: Chile’s Bachelet promises reforms after landslide election win

Photo: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado

Filed under chile americas presidential elections

595 notes &

reuters:

An unknown future

A new law in Israel allows the government to keep migrants, including those seeking political asylum, in jail indefinitely. Activists who helped organize a protest on Tuesday say migrants risk their personal safety if they return home. The Israeli government says the “infiltrators” — mostly from Sudan and Eritrea — threaten the state’s social makeup.

Police and immigration officers broke up the demonstration and loaded them on to buses headed for prison. A police spokesman said there were some minor scuffles at the scene, but no one was hurt.

Read the full story on Tuesday’s protest: http://reut.rs/1dkgjfV 


Photos by REUTERS/Ammar Awad.

Filed under israel asia middle east immigration africa

71 notes &

timemagazine:

Death Toll Surges in Crisis-Hit Central African Republic
The death toll from last week’s bloodshed in Central African Republic has topped 500, aid groups said on Tuesday as France’s expeditionary forces spread out on a mission to restore law and order in its former colony.
Photo by William Daniels / Panos for TIME
Read more here. 

timemagazine:

Death Toll Surges in Crisis-Hit Central African Republic

The death toll from last week’s bloodshed in Central African Republic has topped 500, aid groups said on Tuesday as France’s expeditionary forces spread out on a mission to restore law and order in its former colony.

Photo by William Daniels / Panos for TIME


Read more here

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