Theatre-maker Enkidu Khaled (Brussels) and writer-activist Chris Keulemans (Amsterdam), who also created the performance Bagdad in 2018, now offer a special programme to give the audience a direct view
of the current revolution in Iraq. With images of the uprisings, stories of eyewitnesses, skype conversations with people who have spent weeks and months demonstrating peacefully at the Freedom Square in Baghdad since last October.
Guests: Muna Al-Jaffal, Noof Assi, Dirk Adriaensens en Tine Danckaers.
Seventeen years after the invasion of Iraq, the world seemed to be heading for another disastrous war in the unstable Middle East. For the time being, a further escalation of the conflict between the US and Iran seems to have been averted, but a small spark may be enough to escalate it. The US American sanctions regime is being further strengthened, and threatening language is still heard from both sides.
that Belgium and the other Member States of the European Union unambiguously condemn any provocative action and violations of international law and human rights;
that Belgium and the European Union play an active mediation role in achieving sustainable de-escalation with Iran;
that Belgium would in no way make itself complicit – if requested – in acts of war and violations of international law by the USA and other countries in Iraq and Iran, neither individually, nor in a NATO context or through other international coalitions.
that Belgium, as a member of the UN Security Council, should take appropriate initiatives to help restore peace and stability in the region and promote political dialogue, under the auspices of the UN;
that the European Union clearly distance itself from the White House’s attempts to make the nuclear agreement with Iran fail. The EU should further encourage Iran to respect the provisions of the agreement and, in return, refuse to implement the US American sanctions that hit the Iranian people hard, but also help them to bypass and compensate them. In the medium term, the Middle East should become a nuclear-free zone.
We express our solidarity with the Iraqi and Iranian protest movements that fight against foreign interference and strive for sovereignty, democratic rights and social justice in their countries.
On Saturday, January 25, an action day will take place in various places in the world at the request of the US peace movement. In Brussels, too, the peace movement will be on the streets at 2 pm at Brussels Central station. Welcome!
Wall Street weapons company CEOs cash in on Iran war danger. Share traders know that a war with Iran would mean more lucrative contracts for US weapons-makers, says SARAH ANDERSON: here.
War and the quest for profits are intrinsically linked: here.
Among the organisations calling for the demonstration are CNAPD, intal, Pax Christi Vlaanderen, Viva Salud, Vrede vzw, Aardewerk, Hand in Hand vluchtelingenwerking Gent.
As the British Ministry of Defense announced on Sunday that a second UK destroyer, the HMS Duncan, had arrived in the Persian Gulf, calls were escalating across the European ruling elite to deploy a European naval flotilla or “eurofleet” in the Persian Gulf to threaten Iran: here.
German government and Greens promote military mission in Persian Gulf: here.
No more blackface make-up for Brussels ‘noirauds’ [‘darkies’]
A Brussels tradition to collect money for charities in blackface is going to change. From now on the ‘noirauds’ will take to the streets in the colours of the Belgian flag.
Since 1876, the city’s celebrities have been collecting money every year in blackface. They supposedly represent ‘African noblemen’, because the conquest of Africa at that time [by Belgian King Leopold II] appealed to the imagination.
The noirauds organization sees it differently nowadays. “The mission is jeopardized by the fuss about our appearance, which is why we want to evolve”, says a spokesperson. “A new look fits the spirit of the times.”
The next collection campaign of the ‘noirauds’ will be held from 14 to 17 March. Then the new colours will also be seen for the first time.
Before joining the march, the Swedish activist was invited to make a speech in front of the Economic and Social Committee (EESC), an EU consultative body representing civil society organisations. And as usual, she didn’t mince her words.
“We want them to talk to the scientists instead. Listen to them. Because we are just repeating what they are saying and have been saying for decades,” she continued. “We want you to follow the Paris Agreement and the IPCC reports. We don’t have any other demands. Just unite behind the science – that is our demand.”
16 years old climate activist Greta Thunberg has given a rousing speech at an EU event in Brussels. The teenager opened a European Commission event in front of President Jean-Claude Juncker where she told politicians to stop ‘sweeping their mess under the carpet for our generation to clean up’.
The Australian government has confirmed the extinction of a small rodent native to a tiny spit of sand in the northernmost part of the Great Barrier Reef ― the first known mammal lost to human-caused climate change.
Scientists say the colors of the world’s oceans will intensify by the end of the century due to climate change, threatening the marine ecosystem from the bottom up.
Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg (16) will come along to Brussels demonstration next week [Thursday 21 February]
The Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg (16), who became famous worldwide for striking week after week against climate change, will come to the Brussels climate march next week to join the protest. Anuna De Wever of Youth for Climate recently announced this.
Next week the climate action will not take place in Namur, as communicated first, but again in Brussels. The reason for this is a special guest: Greta Thunberg, the Swedish teenager who is the source of inspiration for the Belgian climate truants, will come to the demonstration.
“Of course we are very satisfied with her arrival”, says Anuna De Wever. “She ultimately lies at the basis of the movement.” With the arrival of Thunberg, Youth for Climate hopes for a big turnout.
Greta Thunberg became famous all over the world for skipping school to go to the parliament building in Stockholm every Friday to demand a better climate policy. She inspired thousands of students from all over the world to do the same, including the Belgian girls Kyra Gantois and Anuna De Wever, who have been mobilizing multitudes of students for climate marches in Brussels for 6 weeks in a row.
Thunberg was previously invited to the World Economic Forum where she addressed the world leaders and called for a more ambitious climate policy. “I want you to feel the fear I feel every day, and to take action, as if something is on fire somewhere, because that is the case,” said Thunberg. “We still have a small chance to stop greenhouse gas emissions and save a lot of people on our planet from a lot of suffering.”
The Swedish girl then also on Twitter mentioned the success of an earlier edition of “truancy for the climate” in Brussels. “A Belgian journalist just told me that 35,000 students play truant in Brussels. Heroes!” she said. Now she will join such a climate demonstration herself.
Some 70,000 people participated in the climate march through the streets of Brussels. In Belgium there are regularly demonstrations demanding climate measures, but never have so many people joined them. The organization counted on 30,000 people.
On Thursday, 35,000 high school students marched through the Belgian capital to draw attention to climate change. There was a lot of criticism because supposedly for the pupils it was just truancy.
According to NOS correspondent Thomas Spekschoor, many pupils were marching again today. “They wanted to show that they really mean it and that the strike was primarily meant to attract extra attention.
On banners, the demonstrators, eg, criticized the Flemish Minister for the Environment Joke Schauvliege, who does not participate in the march: ‘Joke is a joke’ [in English], writes one of the demonstrators.
Ms Schauvliege belongs to the conservative ‘Christian Democrat’ party.
This video from France calls for a pro-climate march in La Rochelle city. With the slogan also seen in self-made signs in Brussels today: ‘Let us change the system; not the climate’.
This video is about an 18 January 2019 pro-climate march of 10,000 striking students in Lausanne, Switzerland.
This video shows a September 2018 pro-climate march in Marrakech, Morocco.
According to this French language Euronews video today, it was 35,000.
Dutch NOS TV correspondents Tijn Sadée and Bijou van der Borst report today (translated):
Climate truants break record: 35,000 students demonstrate in Brussels
“Tous ensemble!” [All together!] More than 35,000 climate truants shout it in Brussels. They break their record. It is the third Thursday in a row that pupils take to the streets to demand a more ambitious climate policy. Last week they were 12,500. This time, more and more French-speaking students are joining [the first two demonstrations were mainly Dutch speakers].
The movement does not seem to stop anymore. Now it is mainly high school students, but the higher education students will also come next week. In Belgium, universities and higher professional education institutions now have examinations. The higher education students now still stay at home to study, but they have already announced that they would be present next week.
“I prefer men with a small ecological footprint”, “There is no economy on a dead planet“, the most creative slogans pass by in the march, which once again moves from the Central Station to the European Union District.
School managements do not know what to do with the movement. Some punish severely, others come to the conclusion that punishment does not work. “Pupils want penalties for this, it’s about the rebellious action, and when schools legalize it is no longer a protest”, says Johanna VandenBussche, a teacher from Ghent.
At the gate of the Royal Atheneum Etterbeek the school management counts the demonstrators. Around three hundred pupils will have detention after Wednesday afternoon between 13.00 and 15.00. “We support the climate action, but not the one today, and they miss the same lesson every Thursday”, says Sophie Allein, deputy director of the school.
With hands in their pockets, older people look from the sidewalk to the chanting demonstrators. They nod with understanding and guilt. They are the generation that the young people protest against.
“Do you blame me and my generation?” asks NOS correspondent Tijn Sadée. “No, you did not notice it, right?” says a student.