Photo: CollectedMembers of Bangladeshi community celebrate Pahela Baishakh (first day of the Bangla new year 1425) at Shiga, Japan. Photo: CollectedA mother and her child celebrate Pahela Baishakh (first day of the Bangla new year 1425) at Montreal, Canada. Photo: CollectedBangladesh community members celebrate Pahela Baishakh (first day of the Bangla new year 1425) thousands of miles away from their motherland at Albany, New York, USA. Photo: CollectedMembers of a family clad in Baishakhi attires are photographed during a celebration of Bangla new year 1425 at Shiga, Japan. Photo: CollectedA Bangladesh national with his friend joins Baishakh celebrations on the first day of Bangla new year 1425 at Albany, New York, USA. Photo: CollectedA Bangladeshi child sings song during Pahela Baishakh celebration at Shiga, Japan. Photo: CollectedCelebrators observe the first day of Bangla new year 1425 at Albany, New York, USA. Photo: CollectedBangladeshi food items are displayed during a celebration of Bangla new year 1425 at Albany, New York, USA. Photo: CollectedA Bangladeshi family displays Bangladeshi traditional food items at Montreal, Canada. Photo: CollectedPeople from other countries join Pahela Baishakh celebration at Shiga, Japan.Photo: CollectedThe members of the Bangladeshi community are framed during Pahela Baishakh celebration at Shiga, Japan. Photo: CollectedA younger member of a Bangladeshi family dressed-in Baishakhi attires poses at her home at Montreal, Canada.Photo: Collected.Bangladeshi expatriates celebrate Pahela Baishakh, singing traditional Bangla songs in London, UK. Photo: CollectedClad in traditional attires, Bangladeshi community celebrates Pahela Baishakh in New York, USA.Photo: CollectedMembers of Bangladesh community get together to celebrate Pahela Baishakh in Toronto, Canada. Photo: CollectedMembers of Bangladesh community celebrate Pahela Baishakh partying traditional food items including Bharta (mash) in Satama, Japan. Photo: CollectedMembers of a Bangladesh community clad in Baishakhi attires are playing ludu celebrating Bangla new year 1425 at Shiga, Japan.Photo: CollectedMembers of Bangladeshi community in China pose for a photo call while celebrating Bangla new year 1425. Photo: CollectedBangladeshi community in Sweden celebrates Pahela Baishakh. Photo: CollectedTraditional food items are displayed during celebration Bangla new year 1425 in Sweden. Photo: CollectedBangladeshi community in Switzerland brings out Mangal Shubhajatra celebrating Bangla new year 1425. Photo: CollectedMembers of a Bangladeshi community in Switzerland pose for a photo call during Pahela Baishakh celebration. Photo: CollectedMembers of a Bangladeshi community in Switzerland perform during Pahela Baishakh celebration.
-The estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has been killed in Malaysia, a South Korean government source told Reuters on Tuesday.Kim Jong Nam, the older half brother of the North Korean leader, was known to spend a significant amount of his time outside the country and had spoken out publicly against his family’s dynastic control of the isolated state.He was believed to be in his mid-40s.Police in Malaysia told Reuters on Tuesday an unidentified North Korean man had died en route to hospital from Kuala Lumpur airport on Monday. Abdul Aziz Ali, police chief for the Sepang district, said the man’s identity had not been verified.An employee in the emergency ward of Putrajaya hospital said a deceased Korean there was born in 1970 and surnamed Kim.South Korea’s TV Chosun, a cable television network, said that Kim was poisoned at Kuala Lumpur airport by two women believed to be North Korean operatives, who were at large, citing multiple South Korean government sources.The South Korean government source who spoke to Reuters did not immediately provide further details.South Korea’s foreign ministry said it could not confirm the reports, and the country’s intelligence agency could not immediately be reached for comment.Kim Jong Nam and Kim Jong Un are both sons of former leader Kim Jong Il, who died in late 2011, but they had different mothers.Kim Jong Nam was believed to be close to his uncle, Jang Song Thaek, who was North Korea’s second most powerful man before being executed on Kim Jong Un’s orders in 2013.In 2001, Kim Jong Nam was caught at an airport in Japan traveling on a fake passport, saying he had wanted to visit Tokyo Disneyland. He was known to travel to Hong Kong, Macau and mainland China.He said several times over the years that he had no interest in leading his country.”Personally I am against third-generation succession,” he told Japan’s Asahi TV in 2010, before his younger had succeeded their father.”I hope my younger brother will do his best for the sake of North Koreans’ prosperous lives.”
This combination of pictures shows US President-elect Donald Trump (L) and Russian President Vladimir Putin. AFP file photoDonald Trump and Vladimir Putin discussed steps to ease Syria’s civil war and a possible first face-to-face meeting, during what the White House described as a “very good call” Tuesday.The US and Russian leaders spoke by telephone, focusing on the six-year-old Syrian conflict, which has pitched Moscow and Washington into rival camps.“President Trump and President Putin agreed that the suffering in Syria has gone on for far too long and that all parties must do all they can to end the violence,” the White House said.Trump aides also said “the conversation was a very good one” that included “discussion of safe, or de-escalation, zones” in Syria “to achieve lasting peace for humanitarian and many other reasons.”The White House said the two leaders also spoke about “how best to resolve the very dangerous situation in North Korea.”And the Kremlin added that both men were “in favor” of meeting at a G20 summit in Germany this July.That meeting is sure to be closely watched in the United States, where Trump has come under sustained criticism over his campaign’s ties to Russia and his praise of Putin.US intelligence agencies believe that Putin approved of a wide-ranging campaign to tilt the 2016 election in Trump’s favor, prompting US sanctions imposed by former president Barack Obama.The FBI is still investigating possible collusion between the campaign and Moscow.Trump has been muted in his criticism, but tensions between the White House and the Kremlin have resurfaced after the suspected use of the chemical agent sarin against civilians prompted Trump to strike a Syrian regime airbase also used by Russia.Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the call—which he sat in on—was “very productive” with “a lot of detailed exchanges.”“We’ll see where we go from here.”No details were given about the possible safe zones, which have long been discussed, but faltered as Bashar al-Assad’s regime and assorted groups of rebels, Kurds, Iranian-backed militias, Al-Qaeda and Islamic State fighters have kept-up a bloody war that has killed an estimated half million people.The Kremlin, meanwhile, said “the emphasis was put on the potential for coordination of actions by the United States and Russia in the fight against terrorism.”The State Department earlier announced that it would send a junior minister to Russian-backed peace talks in Astana later this week.
Former NBA basketball player Dennis Rodman © of the US walks out from the arrival gate returning from his trip to North Korea at Beijing’s international airport. Photo: AFPFlamboyant former NBA star Dennis Rodman landed in Beijing Saturday after a visit to North Korea, describing the escapade as a “real good trip”.Sporting a baseball cap, sunglasses, green nail polish and a black t-shirt emblazoned with the logo of sponsor PotCoin-a cryptocurrency for the legal cannabis industry-Rodman declined to comment further as he was swarmed at the Beijing airport by journalists.He had arrived in North Korea on Tuesday, saying that he wanted to “open the door” to the regime and claiming that US President Donald Trump would be pleased with his mission.“Dennis is working hard for both countries, trying to, you know, mend the tension as much as possible,” his assistant, who accompanied him and asked to be called “Vo,” told reporters.“With sports that’s what happens, right? Sports unite, sports and music unite,” he added.While in North Korea, Rodman was shown in video and photos presenting the isolated country’s sports minister Kim Il Guk with off-the-wall gifts that included a copy of Trump’s book “The Art of the Deal”, soap, two autographed jerseys and a copy of “Where’s Waldo? The Totally Essential Travel Collection.”Trump was Rodman’s boss when he appeared on the “Celebrity Apprentice” reality TV show.This is at least the fifth trip to North Korea for the heavily pierced and tattooed former basketball star.In 2014 he attracted a deluge of criticism after being filmed in the country singing happy birthday to his “friend for life”, leader Kim Jong-Un.Rodman has met Kim on some but not all of his previous trips, and it remains unclear if he met with the leader this time.This latest visit comes amid high tensions between Washington and Pyongyang following a series of missile tests by the North, which have triggered tightened UN sanctions.Rodman has previously described his visits, including one in 2013 with the Harlem Globetrotters, as “basketball diplomacy” but has been roundly criticised for failing to raise human rights issues.His trip this time coincided with North Korea’s release of a comatose US student, 22-year-old Otto Warmbier of Cincinnati, who was incarcerated in March 2016 for stealing a political poster from a hotel.US officials repeatedly said Rodman was travelling to North Korea as a private citizen, despite speculation he was working as an unofficial emissary for Trump.In the US, Fred Warmbier echoed Washington’s denials that Rodman’s visit to Pyongyang had anything to do with the sudden release of his sick son.American doctors treating the University of Virginia student have cast doubt on North Korean claims that the young man contracted botulism during his detention, saying Warmbier is unresponsive and has experienced extensive tissue loss in all regions of his brain.The North is currently holding three other US citizens.
Nobel Literature Prize postponed after #MeToo turmoilThe Swedish Academy said Friday it would postpone this year’s Nobel Literature Prize for the first time in almost 70 years, as it is rocked by turmoil over links to a man accused of rape and sexual assault.“The Swedish Academy intends to decide on and announce the Nobel Prize in Literature for 2018 in parallel with the naming of the 2019 laureate,” it said.The institution, founded in 1786, has on seven previous occasions chosen to reserve the prize: in 1915, 1919, 1925, 1926, 1927, 1936 and 1949.“On five of those occasions, the prize was delayed then awarded at the same time as the following year’s prize,” the Academy said in a statement.The body has been plunged in crisis since November, in the wake of the global #MeToo campaign, when Swedish newspaper of reference Dagens Nyheter published the testimonies of 18 women claiming to have been raped, sexually assaulted or harassed by Jean-Claude Arnault, an influential figure on the Swedish culture scene.Arnault, the French husband of Academy member and poet Katarina Frostenson, has denied the allegations.The revelations have sowed discord among the Academy’s 18 members about how to move forward, and in recent weeks, six of them have chosen to resign, including permanent secretary Sara Danius.“The active members of the Swedish Academy are of course fully aware that the present crisis of confidence places high demands on a long-term and robust work for change,” the Academy’s interim permanent secretary Anders Olsson said in the statement.“We find it necessary to commit time to recovering public confidence in the Academy before the next laureate can be announced,” he said.
kustiaAn idol of Hindu goddesses Kali was vandalised by some unidentified miscreants at a temple in Thanapara area in Kushtia on Thursday, reports UNB.Thanapara Sarbojanin Puja Mondop president Bishwanath Saha Bishu said the temple caretaker found a part of Kali idol broken while another idol lying on the floor after opening the temple in the morning.Besides, the gold ornaments put on the Kali idol was also missing, he said.Police visited the spot, said Nasir Uddin, officer-in-charge of Kushtia model police station.Police are investigating the incident, he added.
People hold a placard as they take part with others in a rally against anti-semitism in Marseille on 19 February 19, 2019.Thousands of people, some carrying banners proclaiming ‘That’s enough’, took to the streets of the French capital Tuesday evening to protest a spate of recent anti-Semitic attacks, including the daubing of swastikas on nearly 100 graves in a Jewish cemetery in eastern France.The Paris rally, in the city’s central Place de la Republique, was one of about 70 staged nationwide Tuesday in response to a surge in anti-Semitic hate crimes which have triggered a deluge of outrage in France and Israel.Eighteen political parties urged citizens to attend the protests, with prime minister Edouard Philippe and more than half his cabinet attending the rally in Paris.Two former presidents, the socialist Francois Hollande, and the conservative Nicolas Sarkozy also turned up. Parliament suspended its work for several hours to allow MPs to attend the rally, while religious leaders met with the interior minister to affirm their unity.Speaking on television Philippe said it was necessary to punish those who “because of ideology, because they think it’s an easy option, because of ignorance or hostility call into question what we are—a diverse but proud people”.Earlier in the day president Emmanuel Macron also promised to crack down on hate crimes when inspecting a cemetery in Quatzenheim in the Alsace region near Germany where 96 Jewish tombstones were spray-painted with blue and yellow swastikas the previous night.“We shall act, we shall pass laws, we shall punish,” Macron told Jewish leaders as he toured the cemetery.“Those who did this are not worthy of the Republic,” he said, later placing a white rose on a tombstone commemorating Jews deported to Germany during World War II.Another grave bore the words “Elsassisches Schwarzen Wolfe” (“Black Alsatian Wolves), a separatist group with links to neo-Nazis in the 1970s.It was the second recent case of extensive cemetery desecration in the region. In December nearly 40 graves as well as a monument to Holocaust victims were vandalised in Herrlisheim, about a half-hour drive from Quatzenheim.Macron and his wife, Brigitte, later laid a wreath at the Paris Holocaust memorial.‘Shocking’ vandalismIsraeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed the “shocking” anti-Semitic vandalism, while one of his cabinet colleagues urged French Jews to “come home” to Israel.Many French Jews are on edge after the government announced a 74 per cent jump in anti-Jewish offences in 2018 after two years of declines.Tensions mounted last weekend after a prominent French writer was the target of a violent tirade by a “yellow vest” protester in Paris on Saturday.A video of the scene showed the protester calling the philosopher Alain Finkielkraut a “dirty Zionist” and telling him “France belongs to us”.In France, several officials have accused the grass-roots yellow vest movement of unleashing a wave of extremist violence that has fostered anti-Semitic outbursts among some participants.“It would be false and absurd to call the yellow vest movement anti-Semitic,” Philippe told L’Express magazine in an interview published Tuesday.The prime minister, who has promised a tough new law targeting online hate speech by this summer, warned however that “anti-Semitism has very deep roots in French society”.Long historyMacron, for his part, is to lay out his plans to combat anti-Semitism during a speech at the annual dinner of the CRIF umbrella association of French Jewish groups on Wednesday.Anti-Semitism has a long history in France where society was deeply split at the end of the 19th century by the Alfred Dreyfus affair, a Jewish army captain wrongly convicted of treason.During World War II, the French Vichy government collaborated with Germany notably in the deportation of Jews to death camps.More recently French anti-Semitism, traditionally associated with the far right, has also spread among far-left pro-Palestinian extremists and radicals from amongst the growing Muslim community.But Macron has resisted calls by some lawmakers to explicitly penalise so-called anti-Zionist statements calling into question Israel’s right to exist as a nation.A recent Ifop poll of “yellow vest” backers found that nearly half those questioned believed in a worldwide “Zionist plot” and other conspiracy theories.
Jax Jacobsen As Amazon burns, Vatican prepares for summit on region’s faith and sustainabilit … August 30, 2019 News • Photos of the Week Share This! Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email Photos of the Week August 30, 2019 By: Jax Jacobsen Catholicism By: Jax Jacobsen TagsBill 21 homepage featured Parti Quebecois Quebec religious discrimination religious freedom,You may also like Instagram apostasy stirs controversy over Christian ‘influencers’ August 30, 2019 Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email Share This! Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,(RNS) — Quebec’s provincial assembly will vote Friday (June 14) on Bill 21, a controversial measure that would ban public-sector workers in positions of authority from wearing any sort of religious symbolism while at their job. If passed, the law would bar Muslim women who wear the hijab, Sikhs wearing turbans and Jewish men wearing kippas, among others, from being able to work as teachers, police officers and judges. Christians would also have to remove their crosses.More drastically, however, Bill 21 would also prohibit anyone from wearing religious symbols while receiving services from government bodies, including transit, doctors and dentists, school boards or subsidized day cares. If it passes, women wearing religious covering — including the niqab — would not be able to use a bus without revealing their faces.The governing Coalition Avenir Quebec hopes to pass the law before heading on summer break.An overview of Bill 21The measure, which CAQ promised to pass in last fall’s electoral campaign, aims to protect the secularity of the province. According to the text of the law, it also “attaches importance to the equality of women and men.”The proposed bill immediately drew criticism from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who called it “unthinkable” that “in a free society we would legitimize discrimination against citizens based on their religion,” while legal scholars maintain that the bill clearly violates Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms.RELATED: In Quebec, Christian liberalism becomes the religious authorityQuebec Premier François Legault on March 28, 2019, as his government voted on Bill 21. The crucifix behind him would likely disappear if the legislation is passed. (The Canadian Press/Jacques Boissinot)The U.N. has also weighed in on the legislation, warning that the bill could lead to the violation of rights, including rights to health or education.Quebec Premier François Legault insists that the bill is not discriminatory and that what voters want is to settle the issue of religious symbols in the public sphere once and for all.What impact will it have?Groups representing religious minorities are largely unsupportive of the bill and say it is discriminatory.“What it does is disadvantage the women who want to practice their faith from participating in the labor market,” said Nuzhat Jafri, who is executive director of the Canadian Council of Muslim Women.“We’re not talking about large numbers of people foisting their religion on anyone,” Jafri said. “Women are practicing their faith and at the same time they want to be full participants in Quebec society.”During public hearings on the bill in May, Amrit Kaur, the World Sikh Organization’s vice president for Quebec, said the bill was “offensive to neutrality or secularism in the public sector and does nothing to advance the cause of gender equality.” According to the WSO, passing the bill would set a dangerous precedent that would undermine the rights of women and minority religious groups in the province.But those in support of the bill insist such measures are necessary to preserve Quebec’s religious neutrality.“For us, democracy is inseparable from secularism,” said Diane Guilbault, president of Pour les droits des Femmes (For the Rights of Women).“We are not asking for the end of religions. We are asking for the state to disassociate itself completely from them in its relations with citizens,” she said, pointing to how people use religious pretexts to deny rights to women.“The majority of Quebecers — of all backgrounds — support a secular state,” she said.Fourth time’s the charm?CAQ’s bill is the fourth attempt in the legislature to ban religious symbols in the public sector. In 2010, Premier Jean Charest presented a bill requiring individuals to show their face when receiving government services. In 2013, Premier Pauline Marois, with the nationalist Parti Quebecois, tried to pass the Charter of Values, which would have affirmed “state secularism and religious neutrality” while also ensuring the equality of men and women.Like Bill 21, the charter would have banned all public workers, including teachers and those working in the health professions, from wearing conspicuous religious symbols, though smaller pieces of jewelry with religious markings would be permitted.The controversial bill never passed, as Marois lost an April 2014 election she had called to gain an outright majority. Her loss was attributed in part to deep-seated opposition to the charter.The Liberal government that replaced Marois’, however, passed its own religious neutrality bill in October 2017, which banned all public workers and those receiving government services from covering their faces. That law is undergoing legal challenges.CAQ came to power promising to take action on the issue, emphasizing that people were growing tired of the debate.There are differences between the bills, said Daniel Béland, the director of the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada.“CAQ is going farther than the Liberals,” he said. “The Liberals supported a much more restrictive approach to secularism, while CAQ is closer to the Parti Quebecois in some areas. In the case of the CAQ, it’s a blanket approach, and it’s easier to implement.”How could this happen in Canada?Canada, unlike the U.S., does not have a bill of rights explicitly endorsing freedom of religion.The Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which has existed since 1982, guarantees a number of freedoms, including the freedom of religion and the freedom of assembly. However, it also includes a “notwithstanding clause” that allows provinces to override the charter for five years.Canada is “a very decentralized country, far more than the U.S.,” Béland said. “What the notwithstanding clause does is it allows the parliament, or a provincial legislature, to temporarily override certain aspects of the charter, so it’s something you can do for a limited time and then renew it.”CAQ has included a notwithstanding clause in the bill, which legal experts warn will invite a flurry of legal action.“It’s a controversial move,” Béland said. “It’s the first time that Quebec has used the clause since 1988, when they used it for the Charter of the French Language, to defend legislation to force immigrants in Quebec to go to French schools.”People protest in Karachi, Pakistan, on Feb. 2, 2017, against an attack days earlier on the Quebec Islamic Culture Centre in Canada that killed six Muslim men during evening prayers. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Quebec’s premier at the time, Philippe Couillard, both characterized the attack as a terrorist act. (AP Photo/Fareed Khan)Climate of rising anti-Muslim incidentsThis latest version of a religious neutrality law comes as incidents against religious minorities, and particularly Muslims, have been rising.Most notably, in January 2017, six Muslim men were shot dead in their mosque in Quebec City. According to Statistics Canada, hate crimes against Muslims grew by 253% from 2012 to 2015, largely propelled by incidents in Quebec and Ontario. Since Bill 21 was introduced in the National Assembly, Muslim women in the province say they have experienced increasing levels of provocation.The end of the issue?Though Legault has said he has presented the bill to bring closure to an issue that has dominated Quebec politics for over a decade, it’s unlikely this legislation will succeed in that.Coalition Avenir Quebec leader François Legault, left, speaks on the campaign trail in Montreal in September 2018 before the election that saw his party form a majority government. (The Canadian Press/Ryan Remiorz)Opposition to Bill 21 is very forceful, Béland said, partly because a lot more people will be affected by this bill than by its previous iterations.It also exacerbates divisions in Quebec society.Opposition “is concentrated in Montreal, as it’s by far the largest city in the province and has the most immigrants and the largest Anglophone minority,” he said, referring to the city’s English speakers.Anglophones, in Quebec and across the rest of Canada, are less likely to share the French-speaking population’s attachment to laïcité, a concept of secular assimilation that is also prized in France.But there’s also a clash in age groups, Béland added. “Younger people care less about these issues than older people, and they give more weight to religious freedom than secularism.”Protests were held in Quebec City on Wednesday against the bill. Share This! Jax Jacobsen,Load Comments,California church sues after removal as polling place over Black Lives Matter banners Southern Baptists face sex abuse crisis with litany of lament Share This! Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,About the authorView All Posts Share This! News Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email By: Jax Jacobsen
AP Photo/Eric Gay, FileFILE – In this Sept. 10, 2014, file photo, detained immigrant children play kickball at the Karnes County Residential Center, a temporary home for immigrant women and children detained at the border in Karnes City, Texas. The GEO Group, a private prison company, announced Thursday, April 13, 2017, it has won a $110-million federal contract to build in Texas the first new immigrant detention center under the Trump administration. The company said that the 1,000-bed detention facility will be in Conroe, Texas, north of Houston. It’s scheduled to open by December 2018.A private prison company announced Thursday it has won a $110-million federal contract to build in Texas the first new immigrant detention center under the Trump administration.The GEO Group said that its 1,000-bed detention facility will be in Conroe, north of Houston, and will open by the end of next year. The facility coincides with President Donald Trump’s promised expansion of immigration detention, part of a larger crackdown on immigrants in the country illegally that includes detaining people seeking asylum while they go through immigration proceedings.U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement already has a record of more than 41,000 detainees.The agency has also identified an additional 21,000 unused beds that it plans to use for detention, according to a memo reported Wednesday by the Washington Post. That memo notes that “ICE will be unable to secure additional detention capacity until funding has been identified.”GEO, ICE’s second-largest private prison contractor, has approximately 3,000 empty beds nationwide, according to a February investor call.Faced with a lack of funds and potentially thousands of empty beds, ICE’s move to secure a new contract with GEO surprised immigrant rights advocates.“This is totally unprecedented,” said Silky Shaw, Co-Director of Detention Watch Network, a Washington-based non-profit fighting to end immigrant detention. “Even the most recent expansion we’ve seen has been county jails and repurposing facilities that have been shuttered.”Trump has instructed ICE to detain all individuals suspected of violating immigration laws.“Aliens who illegally enter the United States without inspection or admission present a significant threat to national security and public safety,” the president said in a Jan. 25 executive order asking ICE to “allocate all legally available resources to immediately construct, operate, control, or establish contracts to construct, operate, or control facilities to detain aliens at or near the land border with Mexico.”Still, Carl Takei, Staff Attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union’s National Prison Project, said the contract was a “sign that the Trump administration’s plans are a huge boondoggle for the private prison industry,” which already operates about 75 percent of immigrant detention facilities.Takei said the new facility’s location was also striking, given that GEO already operates the 1,517-bed Joe Corley immigrant detention center in the same small town.“Frankly this surprises me … This raises the question both of how much ICE is actually planning to expand its already enormous detention system and where they’re going to get the money for all this,” Takei said. “ICE has a pretty limited amount of money and they can’t fund expanding detention in 2017 unless Congress passes supplemental appropriations.”GEO referred all questions to ICE, which did not return requests for comment.Texas getting first immigrant center built under Trump Share
Share Students battled tear gas-throwing police officers in demonstrations across Venezuela’s capital Thursday as a two-month-old protest movement that shows no signs of letting up claimed more lives. “We are students, not terrorists!” a mass of students chanted as they marched in Caracas. Soldiers bathed hundreds of protesters in tear gas at the Central University of Venezuela, with medics in gas masks attending to students with bloodied faces and limbs. “Do you know how many dead there are?” Rafaela Requesens, a student leader, shouted at a wall of National Guard officers standing shoulder-to-shoulder and stopping protesters from advancing. “They are your victims.” Gunfire erupted at a student gathering in El Tigre, a city southeast of Caracas, leaving Juan Lopez, 33, dead and three others injured, according to the chief prosecutor’s office. Preliminary reports indicate an assailant fired at Lopez toward the end of the meeting and then fled on a motorcycle. Lopez was the president of a university federation. The student leader’s death brought to at least 37 the number killed in Venezuela’s ongoing political turmoil. Earlier Thursday, authorities announced a 38-year-old police officer in the central state of Carabobo had died of his injuries after being shot during a Wednesday protest that had hundreds of thousands of people on the street nationwide. Wednesday’s protest also left a 17-year-old student and musician dead. More than 700 others have been wounded, no small matter in a country with crippling medical shortages. Opposition leaders said 30 were injured in Thursday’s student demonstrations. Overall, more than 1,000 have been arrested. West of Caracas in Valencia, there were reports of looting at several businesses and at least one factory, the thieves taking off with plastic crates filled with bottles and even a forklift. Protesters are demanding immediate presidential elections. President Nicolas Maduro accuses the opposition of attempting a coup, and has responded with an initiative to rewrite the constitution. Walking through an agricultural expo where he pet goats and sampled cheese Thursday, Maduro repeatedly reiterated his call for a special assembly tasked with defining Venezuela’s future. He added that the yet-to-be-created constituent body would decide the South American nation’s destiny “for the next 50 years.” International pressure on Maduro to hold elections is continuing to escalate amid his call for a constitution rewrite. A group of bipartisan U.S. legislators sent a letter to President Donald Trump Thursday urging him to apply new sanctions against individuals responsible for human rights violations and to push for the delivery of humanitarian relief. Eight Latin American nations issued a statement decrying the excessive use of force by Venezuelan authorities against protesters, saying such actions only, “polarize Venezuelan society even more.” And Venezuelan classical music maestro Gustavo Dudamel spoke out against events in his country, calling on Maduro to listen to the protesters. In an online essay titled “I Raise My Voice,” he urged Maduro to reduce political tensions. “We must stop ignoring the just cry of the people suffocated by an intolerable crisis,” said Dudamel, who is serving as the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s musical director. Venezuelans and fellow classical music performers have blasted Dudamel in the past for being cozy with Maduro.
Electric vehicles and hybrids have been around — in one form or another — for a generation now. A decade ago, there were two major impediments to EVs catching on: the range of a battery charge and the lack of infrastructure, like charging stations around the country.But has that changed — has the environment (pun somewhat intended) for electric vehicles improved in Greater Houston in recent years?In an interview from the Houston Auto Show, we talk it over with Nic Phillips, founding member of the Ideal Electric Company and former president of the Texas Auto Writers Association; Gigi Rill from the Rice Electric Vehicle Club; and Carroll Smith, president of Monument Chevrolet in Pasadena. Share
Photo via YouTubePrairie View A&M University.A federal lawsuit alleges a Prairie View A&M University coach helped a male student accused of sexual assault flee Texas to avoid arrest.An unidentified female athlete filed the lawsuit Friday in Houston. It accuses the university of creating a hostile educational environment and violating the federal law prohibiting gender discrimination in educational institutions, the Houston Chronicle reported .According to the lawsuit, the woman reported to university police the day after the Feb. 18, 2015, assault in her campus apartment. She alleged she confided to her coach, who isn’t named, and identified her attacker.The coach responded by telling her not to alert her parents, and then bought the accused student a plane ticket to leave town, according to the lawsuit.The coach left his position several months later and told the woman’s teammates she was the reason for his departure, the lawsuit stated. The suit didn’t mention which sport the woman played.The unidentified accused student was found in Florida and charged with sexual assault in May 2015, according to the lawsuit, which didn’t provide details on the case’s outcome. The woman alleged she learned the coach paid for the student’s plane ticket while she attended a bail hearing on the case.“If the people responding to survivors are acting more like gatekeepers keeping the case from going forward, that’s not justice — that’s abetting a rapist,” said Christopher Kaiser, director of public policy for the Texas Association Against Sexual Assault.The university doesn’t comment on pending litigation but officials take allegations of sexual assault seriously, said Yolanda Bevill, spokeswoman for the university.The accusation is the latest federal lawsuit accusing a college campus of not properly handling allegations of sexual misconduct, a problem universities nationwide have long faced. Federal officials are reconsidering guidance on how universities should respond to reports under Title IX.“If you can’t trust your coach, if you can’t trust your school, if you can’t trust the police, who do you turn to?” said Brenda Tracy, a victim advocate who has worked with Texas college sports teams. “You have a responsibility for the well-being of this human in front of you. This is serious trauma with serious consequences.”___Information from: Houston Chronicle, http://www.houstonchronicle.com Share
Eric Gay | APFile photo of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott at an event where he announced his bid for re-election, Friday, July 14, 2017, in San Antonio.Texas Governor Greg Abbott will be in Kingwood, Thursday, March 15th. He will be meeting with community leaders and elected officials to discuss Hurricane Harvey recovery.The roundtable meeting will take place at Kingwood Community Center, 4102 Rustic Woods Drive Kingwood, TX 77345, at 2:30 p.m. Share
00:00 /50:25 X To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: Listen On Wednesday’s Houston Matters: Just a day after it was announced, the Houston firefighters union is withdrawing from an upcoming debate on the pay parity ballot measure. They were set to share the stage with Mayor Sylvester Turner at a community forum on Saturday. We learn more.Also this hour: From the latest on the FBI investigation into allegations against Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, to a New York Times investigation into the Trump family’s taxes, our experts discuss the latest national, state, and local political stories with an eye for how they might affect Houston and Texas.Then, former Republican South Carolina Congressman Bob Inglis explains how he went from climate change denier to advocate for action on the issue.And we visit a local production of Evil Dead: The Musical.WATCH: Today’s Houston Matters 360-Degree Facebook Live Video. We offer a daily podcast here, on iTunes, Stitcher and other podcasting apps. This article is part of the Houston Matters podcast Share
Listen at WEAA Live Stream: http://amber.streamguys.com.4020/live.m3uIn the span of a couple of weeks, America has witnessed the murder of Walter Scott in North Charleston, South Carolina, the shooting death of Eric Harris in Tulsa, Oklahoma and the severe beating of Francis Pusok in San Bernadino, California; all of the incidents at the hands of law enforcement, all captured on video. During our first hour we ask our panel of experts the question: is law enforcement in the United States out of control? This story and more coming up this evening on AFRO’s First Edition with Sean Yoes.
Coalition Counters: Remediating Duplication Damage–Not Governance, is the Focus of the Lawsuit(Updated 2/17/2017) Kurt Schmoke claims the HBCU Equity Case has been on his radar screen long before 2014, the year he became a formal party to the case in his current role as President of the University of Baltimore (UB). Schmoke, a Baltimore native served as the first African American elected mayor of the city from 1987 through 1999, a city with two of the state’s four HBI’s and several public and private higher education institutions. Schmoke went on to a successful academic career as Dean of the Howard University Law School where he “authorized the participation of the Howard Law School Civil Rights Clinic” to work on behalf of the HBCU’s involved in the case” said Brenda Shum director of the Educational Opportunities Project at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and attorney for the plaintiffs. Schmoke testified that he sought to prevent a collision course between the University of Baltimore and neighboring Coppin and Morgan State Universities when he became UB’s president in 2014. “I was asked what problems did I perceive in the future of higher education,” Schmoke said when he interviewed for his current job in early 2014. “I talked about this case. I thought it was an important matter. I thought we should start thinking about what we should do,” Schmoke said. Schmoke allowed the agreement creating the joint Towson State-UBMBA program to expire in 2015. The joint MBA was one of the many academic programs that Maryland HBCU’s said directly competed with HBCU attempts to broaden their business degree offerings. “The Towson-UB MBA decision needed to be revisited. In the interview [for UB president] I reviewed Judge Blake’s decision” Schmoke said. During cross examination, Schmoke proposed that the court consider developing a commonly adopted academic market akin to a model in place at the City University of New York’s 24 colleges and graduate schools located across the city’s five boroughs. “I have talked to the regents and others before about adopting in Maryland the model of the City University of New York, and that is create in Baltimore a City University of Baltimore, which would mean — would be comprised of Morgan, Coppin, UB, and Baltimore City CommunityCollege,” said Schmoke. “It, like CUNY, would not mean a merger, because they didn’t merge any of those institutions. They simply allow them to be distinct, but they collaborated on back-office matters and helped in — to increase collaboration among the institutions,” Schmoke continued. “If done right, I think could make the strong argument that it’s in the best interests of the State,” Schmoke said. When asked his views on Schmoke’s proposal , Coalition president David Burton said, “The Schmoke proposal would do absolutely nothing to address the. problem of unnecessary program duplication the court cited as a violation of the constitution. It would only make a bad situation worse. “The new entity Schmoke proposes excludes the University of Maryland Baltimore County and Towson University, the two campuses responsible for the largest degree of program duplication. Even if UMBC and Towson were included, however, the new entity would not address the Court’s concern with unnecessary duplication since each campus would retain its current identity and set of programs.” Burton said.“The bottom line is that the Schmoke proposal would have the effect of wrongly shifting the focus of the problem from program duplication to institutional governance and control,” according to Burton.The HBCU Equity Trial is expected to conclude at the end of February. Judge Catherine E. Blake is charged with issuing a remedy to correct the historic pattern of discrimination against Maryland’s HBCU’s with a focus on ending state sponsored duplication of academic programs. The original ruling in Coalition for Equity and Excellence in Maryland Higher Education v. Maryland Higher Education Commission was decided on behalf of the plaintiffs in 2013.
Listen at WEAA Live Stream: http://amber.streamguys.com.4020/live.m3uA rebroadcast of our Sept. 12 show featuring, University of Maryland law professor Doug Colbert reporting on a recent legislative hearing in Annapolis focused on Baltimore violence. Plus, David Miller, community leader and youth advocate, and CEO of the, “Dare To Be King Project,” and Pastor Linwood Bethea of the Set the Captives Free Outreach Center, discuss the upcoming Black Family Conference, Sept. 22-24.These stories and much more on AFRO’s First Edition with Sean Yoes, Monday through Friday, 5-7 p.m.
By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Correspondent, @StacyBrownMediaSince the founding of the Black Press 192 years ago, African American-owned newspapers have served their communities in ways that no other publications have.Historically, these publications have operated on “shoe-string” budgets, are usually understaffed, and also face other severe limitations. Yet, the Black Press always has maintained its mission as the voice of Black America.That tradition has held true through many transitions and has continued during the 79-year history of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA). The NNPA is the trade organization representing America’s Black-owned newspapers and media companies. The organization’s members serve millions of readers that rely on the Black Press to provide content not regularly found in other media.For many, the Black Press is just as essential to the culture of the community as the Black church.“It is undeniable that the Black church and the Black Press have been, and continue to be, the foundational pillars of Black America’s long struggle for freedom, justice, equality and empowerment,” said NNPA President and CEO Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr.“We know first-hand the power of the pen and we remain committed to helping to ensure and to mentor the next generation of freedom-fighting publishers, editors and journalists,” Chavis said.On March 16, 1827, The Rev. Samuel Cornish and John Russwurm made history by publishing “Freedom’s Journal,” the nation’s first Black newspaper.NNPA Chairman Dorothy R. Leavell, who publishes the Chicago and Gary Crusader newspapers, has often described “Freedom’s Journal” as courageous and she regularly cites the newspaper’s motto as one that remains a focus of the Black Press today.“We wish to tell our own story,” Leavell said, quoting Russwurm and Cornish’s mission that, “for too long others have spoken for us, but we wish to tell our own story.”Circulated in 11 states and in Europe, Canada and Haiti, “Freedom’s Journal” provided international, national and local details pertinent to the Black community. They denounced slavery and lynching and, among the many features that endeared the newspaper to its readers, were African American community-based marriage, birth and death announcements.Soon, other Black-owned papers like the Savannah Tribune, The Afro-American in Baltimore, the Indianapolis Recorder, and The Philadelphia Tribune began publishing.Those newspapers and others, like the Pittsburgh Courier, the New Journal and Guide in Virginia, and The Kansas City Call, have maintained the tradition and continue to deliver news and insights today.The NNPA honors the history and legacy of the Black Press via The Black Press Archives and Gallery of Distinguished Publishers at Howard University.Each year during Black Press Week in Washington, DC, a NNPA member is posthumously enshrined in the Archives and Gallery.“It’s so important we remember our past and remember those whose shoulders we stand upon,” Chavis said.As community-focused publishers, the news that appears in NNPA’s member publications affects the day-to-day lives of their readership. For example, in Dallas, Texas, where voters recently elected a new mayor, U.S. congressman and Dallas County District Attorney.For many in Dallas’ African American community, these much-needed changes were underscored through the resilient coverage of the city’s Black-owned North Dallas Gazette, which for decades has provided some of the most in-depth coverage of local elections for a publication of its size.“We regularly inform our readers on the bills and positions offered by our new congressman and last year, we featured several stories on criminal justice and bail reform,” said the paper’s publisher Thurman Jones.Since its first issue nearly 50 years ago, the South Florida-based Westside Gazette has maintained the high level of professional, insightful and reader-sensitive reporting that has gained the trust and respect of South Florida’s African American community.Two of its signature events – “Sweet Potato Pie, Politics and Ice Cream,” and “The White Hat Gala,” – have proven a hit throughout the Sunshine State.“The ‘Sweet Potato Pie, Politics and Ice Cream’ event is where our politicians come out and actually serve the audience sweet potato pie and ice cream,” said Westside Gazette publisher, Bobby Henry.“It’s really unique and it gives an opportunity for an intimate formal discussion with those who are vying for political position,” he said.The “White Hat Gala,” counts as a fundraiser for Sickle Cell Disease.The Toledo Journal Newspaper in Toledo, Ohio, has been publishing since 1975 and, like the content found throughout its pages, its slogan is an attention-grabber: “Everybody is Somebody in The Toledo Journal.”“This has made a difference in making our Black community feel important,” said the newspaper’s publisher, Sandra S. Stewart.“Over the years, we have had an impact in the areas of business, political, social, recreational, religious, and sports, in our community. So, our readers believe in us and know we are fair to our community,” she said.The impact of the legacy, history and challenges met and overcome by members of the Black Press has not been lost on or squandered by today’s NNPA members. While the Black Press has expanded to include cities and communities throughout the country, including New York, Washington, South Carolina, New Orleans, St. Louis, Chicago, Texas, and California, member publishers have continued to live up to the civil rights mantra of “Soldiers without Swords.”
Episode 12: Jordyn WolfeThe Wolfe FileNumber: 23Full name: Jordyn Marie WolfeNickname: WolfeClass: SophomorePosition: OFBats/Throws: L/RHometown: South Elgin, Ill.High School: St. Charles NorthTravel Team: Beverly BanditsMajor: EducationFun Fact: Post college ambition is to be a second grade teacher Print Friendly Version The University of Louisville Softball Player Spotlight series features short interviews with each of the Cardinals’ players. Episode 12 features sophomore Jordyn Wolfe. Story Links
The film had a limited theatrical release and will be on Netflix globally from December. Factual specialist Dogwoof handled distribution and cut the agreement with Netflix.It is Noah Media’s first deal with the streamer. The indie’s CEO, John McKenna, produced the film. “Bobby was an influential and much-loved character whose story connects with people around the world on a very personal level,” he said. “This is so much more than a sporting documentary – it’s a global tale of endurance and passion, and we’re excited that audiences will now be able to experience Bobby’s journey through Netflix.”Netflix and Amazon are both making moves into sports programming, particularly soccer. Amazon has dipped its toe in the waters of live soccer, snagging a package of English Premier League rights. Netflix has indicated that live sports are not on its current agenda, but it has a factual series coming up, “Sunderland ‘Til I Die,” about England’s Sunderland Football Club. Amazon followed Premier League champion Manchester City in its series “All or Nothing: Manchester City.” ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15 The story of one of the iconic figures of the beautiful game is coming to Netflix, which will launch “Bobby Robson: More Than a Manager” on its platform globally.The film tells the story of much-loved soccer player and manager Bobby Robson, who took charge of English club Ipswich and Spanish giants Barcelona among others in a storied club career. At the international level, he was manager of England’s soccer team for two World Cups, including the 1990 tournament in which he took the squad to the semifinals. Robson died in 2009.The film features unseen footage from his career and also follows his battles with cancer and his establishment of the Sir Bobby Robson Cancer Foundation. It was produced by U.K.-based Noah Media, which has made other sports films, including “Steve McQueen: The Man and Le Mans” and “Clough.” There are interviews with soccer A-listers such as Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho, Pep Guardiola and Ronaldo. Popular on Variety