British Theresa May breaks promise to Grenfell Tower survivors

This video from Britain says about itself:

Theresa May’s flip-flops and U-turns

4 June 2017

Theresa May is weak and wobbly, not strong and stable. … Here are seven of her top flip-flops.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

6 June 2017

Grenfell Tower survivors could be deported in 12 months despite government immigration amnesty

The Government has confirmed those who come forward to receive support and assistance will receive only 12 months’ limited leave to remain

Tom Peck, Lucy Pasha-Robinson

Theresa May has U-turned on a promise not to carry out immigration checks on Grenfell fire victims, leaving survivors who need help at risk of deportation if they come forward.

The Prime Minister pledged in Parliament not to use the tragedy as an excuse to check residents’ immigration status, but ministers confirmed anyone wanting help must register with Home Office officials and be subject to normal immigration rules after 12 months.

Downing Street confirmed to The Independent that what happens to survivors at that point would “depend on their circumstances”.

Campaigners had raised concerns victims may not come forward for help because they feared questions being raised about their immigration status, with Labour branding the Government’s newly unveiled approach as “grotesque”.

It came as police announced 87 discoveries of human remains in the charred tower, but could not say they belonged to the same number of people because of the “catastrophic damage” in the building.

Ministers also announced they would send a task force to take over parts of the beleaguered Kensington and Chelsea Council following heavy criticism of its response to the disaster. …

Jolyon Maugham QC, a prominent barrister who has volunteered to offer free legal services to Grenfell victims, said: “You can’t really call this an amnesty. The Government is offering not to deport you immediately if you give it the wherewithal to deport you later. It’s hard to see that it will have the response the Government says it desires.”

Karen Doyle, spokesperson for Movement for Justice – an immigration rights group – said: “A 12-month amnesty is like handing over a ticking time bomb to severely traumatised people. Recovery from what happened at Grenfell will be a lifetime process – one that requires people are in a safe and secure environment to make space for that painstaking work.

“Navigating the immigration system, living with constant fear of deportation and being constantly told you are a liar is itself a traumatising process.

“For those who are undocumented, who know what fate awaits them at the end of 12 months, this ‘offer’ means nothing.

“The only meaningful offer would be a complete amnesty with permanent right to remain. Let these people heal.”

Those granted limited leave to remain will have full access to relevant support and assistance, but only for the limited time available.

Diane Abbott, the Shadow Home Secretary, said the possibility of deportation for survivors was “grotesque”.

Ms Abbot said: “The partial amnesty is limited to 12 months, which does not go far enough.

“Some victims have literally lost everything in this horrific tragedy: all their possessions, homes and loved ones. The idea that on top of this they could be deported later is grotesque.

“To access all the support they need without fear of deportation, any survivors concerned about their status must be given indefinite leave to remain. Otherwise, they may just disappear off the grid.”

Two weeks ago, Theresa May told the House of Commons: “We will not use this tragic incident as a reason to carry out immigration checks on those involved or on those providing vital information to identify victims or those assisting with the criminal investigation.

“We will make sure that all victims, irrespective of their immigration status, will be able to access the services they need, including healthcare and accommodation.”

Earlier on Wednesday, the Metropolitan Police said that, even with the team of 250 forensic pathologists and officers that are currently working within the tower, it would still take “many months” for the final death toll to be known.

Commander Stuart Cundy said: “Until formal identification has been completed to the coroner’s satisfaction I cannot say how many people have now been recovered.”

The last visible human remains were extracted on Monday, and 21 people have been formally identified by the coroner and their families informed.

TORY flip-flopper Boris Johnson appeared yesterday to have switched sides again — this time over public-sector pay, after he U-turned on calls to scrap the cap and warned against a “crazy Corbynite splurge”: here.


Good Mediterranean gull news

This 25 February 2017 video shows a Mediterranean gull in summer plumage, swimming between black-headed gulls (which should rather be called brown-headed gulls 🙂 … but there already is yet another species of that name) in winter plumage in the Neptunushaven harbour in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Mediterranean gulls are a mainly South European species. In the Netherlands, they nest mainly in Zeeland province and the adjacent part of South Holland province in the south-west.

The Dutch SOVON ornithologists report today that at least 1550 Mediterranean gull couples nest on the Ventjagersplaten sand banks in South Holland this summer. The biggest Mediterranean gull colony ever in the Netherlands. About 1600 young birds fledged, which is good.

In Zeeuws-Vlaanderen region in Zeeland an estimated 1500 more couples are estimated to have nested.

I saw these beautiful gulls from a ship from Turkey to Greece.

Spinosaur dinosaurs, new study

This 2015 video says about itself:

Today we talk about my favorite dinosaur: Spinosaurus! We will talk about topics like: Who would win in a fight, Spinosaurus or T-rex? and What did the real spino look like?

From Acta Geologica Sinica in China:

A Century of Spinosaurs – A Review and Revision of the Spinosauridae with Comments on Their Ecology

June 2017

About the first author: HONE David William Elliott: Male; born in 1978 in London, UK; PhD; Lecturer in Zoology, Queen Mary University of London. He is interested in the study of sexual selection and behaviour in the fossil record.


The spinosaurids represent an enigmatic and highly unusual form of large tetanuran theropods that were first identified in 1915. A recent flurry of discoveries and taxonomic revisions of this important and interesting clade has added greatly to our knowledge. Spinosaur body fossils are however generally rare and most species are known from only limited skeletal remains. Their unusual anatomical adaptations to the skull, limbs and axial column all differ from other large theropods and point to an unusual ecological niche and a lifestyle intimately linked to water.

Cracking the secrets of Spinosaurus: here.

Bahraini jihadists lure young Indians to death for ISIS

This video from the European Parliament, of Irish Fine Gael center-right MEP Sean Kelly says about itself:

10 July 2015

I spoke in plenary this week about the breach of human rights in Bahrain, particularly in the case of Nabeel Rajab. Rajab is imprisoned in Bahrain currently for tweeting about ISIS.

More specifically, Rajab tweeted about links between the Bahraini autocratic regime and ISIS. There are many such links.

Most people in Bahrain are against its absolute monarchy. To prop up its wobbly position, the royal family relies on the Saudi autocracy and its armed forces. And also on the fanatical Saudi wahhabist state ideology, the model for the ISIS ideology.

Twitter is a social conversation! We need to exercise every pressure we can to release him. Furthermore, I think it would be prudent to set up a working group between Bahrain and the EU to work on human rights– in particular, media freedom.

From the Times of India:

Keralites radicalised youth before being killed fighting for Islamic State [ISIS] in Syria

TNN | Updated: Jul 6, 2017, 09.50 PM IST

KOZHIKODE: The Kerala youth, who were killed while fighting for the Islamic State in Syria, were the members of an extreme Salafi group in Bahrain before they joined the outfit (IS) [ISIS].

Sources told TOI that the two Salafi preachers from Kerala – one from Mankada in Malappuram and the other from Perumbavoor in Ernakulam – were instrumental in radicalising the youth. Four members of the group, including Muhadis from Vandoor, were killed in military operations within a span [of] four months in Syria.

The Salafi preachers had organised classes at a religious centre in Bahrain and at other places where they injected the extreme Salafism in the youth. A few members of the group were working with a catering company in Bahrain.

Sources said the preachers are members of a splinter group among the Kerala Salafis and have no connection with any of the established Salafi organisations in the state. One among them is currently in Mangaluru and his activities are closely monitored by the security agencies.

After getting initiated into extreme Salafism, the youth were learnt to contact some well-known Salafi scholars from Kerala who went to Bahrain at different times. “The Salafi scholars did not entertain the youth as they were found to have strong leanings towards the Islamic State,” sources said.

The youth later came into contact with Abdul Rashid Abdulla, the former employee of the Peace International School in Kozhikode, who had already become a full-fledged IS cadre. It is suspected that the Salafi preachers had a role in helping the youth in establishing contact with Abdul Rashid, who is learnt to have steered them to the IS stronghold in Syria. Rashid himself has landed in Afghanistan and is coordinating the propaganda activities of [the] Kerala module.

The unravelling of the Bahrain group has confirmed the suspicion of the security agencies that the influence of the IS runs deep[er] in Kerala than it was initially thought to be. The number of Malayalis who joined the terror outfit could be much higher than the official estimate which is based on missing cases. IS is suspected to have recruited more Malayalis working in the Gulf countries. Authorities feel that the members of the families of the IS recruits are either unaware of their migration to IS strongholds or are keeping mum due to fear of being ostracized by the society.

Insights gained regarding the Bahrain group have once again forced the law enforcing agencies to sharpen their focus on the Salafi groups in Kerala. Many youth in the Salafi organisations have lost sense of direction after the innumerable splits in the movement.

… Many of the youth who are associated with these extreme Salafi groups finally end up in the tentacles of the Islamic State [ISIS].

American robin baby video

This video from the USA says about itself:

27 June 2017

Spend 20 minutes of quality time hanging out with a baby [American] robin as it takes in the wonders of its new world!

Rare plants back near Terschelling island lake

Bog pimpernel

The forestry department of Terschelling island in the Netherlands reported on 4 July 2017 that rare plants which had been away for decades are now back near Doodemanskisten lake.

They are, eg, pillwort fern and bog pimpernel. These species had disappeared there in the 1950s after the Doodemanskisten environment had deteriorated. A few years ago, conservation measures to improve the situation started.