This 13 March 2020 video says about itself:
This 13 March 2020 video says about itself:
This video says about itself:
Why Azerbaijan Is Getting Poorer Despite An Oil Revolution
All the President’s Oil (2001): After the fall of the Soviet Union, millions poured into Azerbaijan’s oil industry. But only a select few reaped the rewards. Presented by Marcel Theroux.
The oil-rich Azerbaijan ought to be a textbook example of the benefits of globalisation. Multinationals from across the globe have poured in cash to exploit its oil wealth, and now a tidal wave of money is hitting Azerbaijan. But who are the winners? The oil companies of course – but the comfortable contemporary wisdom says that riches will also trickle down to the whole Azeri population, creating a contented, prosperous nation at the centre of a troublesome region that includes Iran and Russia. But it isn’t happening. Forget the cosy platitudes of globalisation. Think corruption, nepotism, despotism, warlords…
By Ben Cowles:
Wednesday, February 12, 2020
THE European Parliament voted in favour of funding gas infrastructure projects today, including a controversial pipeline linked to the brutal dictatorship in Azerbaijan, a day after a fresh crackdown on civil rights activists in the country.
“This a hypocritical decision that fails to reflect the scale of the climate impacts that we are already experiencing and the urgent need to keep fossil fuels in the ground,” said Clemence Dubois of environmental charity 350.org.
“The EU has made a number of big announcements over the past few months, declaring a climate emergency and proposing a green deal, but today’s vote shows that many MEPs and EU institutions are not yet ready to walk the talk,” Mr Dubois said.
“In November, the European Investment Bank pledged to end fossil fuel finance by 2022, but today’s decision activates a loophole that will allow the world’s largest international public lender to pump billions of euros into new climate-wrecking fossil gas projects.”
Snap parliamentary elections held in the small south Caucasian country on Sunday produced another majority for the party of President Ilham Aliyev, whose family has ruled since 1993.
Around 30 people who gathered outside the Electoral Commission yesterday to protest at the dubious election results were beaten by police.
Ulviyya Guliyeva, an independent journalist at the scene, told the Star what she saw.
“For the first two hours, [the police] did nothing. And then they saw that a lot of people were joining the protest, so they began to kick and punch everyone. They beat and detained everyone.”
Ms Guliyeva was bundled into the back of a police van along with protesters and other journalists.
“When we were in the police bus, they said that we were opposition journalists.
“To them, criticising the police or the state is on equal terms with being a member of the opposition.”
INVESTIGATIONS are under way into today’s suicide attempt by a woman who was hounded after displaying a feminist slogan at an International Women’s Day demonstration in Azerbaijan: here.
This 19 September 2019 video says about itself:
The movement against climate change in general and Greta Thunberg in particular have been attacked by, eg, the Trump administration in the USA, the billionaires gathering at the Davos World Economic Forum, the richest billionaire of France and Tony Blair.
Now, the European Union foreign affairs boss has joined in.
Translated from Dutch NOS radio today:
Josep Borrell, the European Union‘s foreign chief, has apologized for a statement about young climate activists. The Spaniard said on Thursday that they are suffering from ‘Greta syndrome’, referring to 17-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg.
He was criticized by Borrell’s remark. The European Greens called the statement unacceptable. …
Many European Union politicians are not as openly climate denialist as Donald Trump. They often pay lip service to the need to do something against climate change. However, they don’t really want to break with the global warming causing billionaires of the fossil fuel industry, of the cars industry, etc; who are sometimes donors to their election campaigns.
This November 2017 video is called SLAVE TRADE IN LIBYA | SHOCKING DOCUMENTARY.
From daily The Morning Star in Britain:
Sunday, February 2, 2020
Around 40,000 people have been intercepted at sea and brought back to war-torn Libya since the EU’s 2017 Malta Declaration
MONDAY marks the third anniversary of a deal struck between the European Union and Libya which has caused tens of thousands of refugees to be pushed back to a war zone — in contravention of international human-rights law.
The result of the meeting was the Malta Declaration, part of which states that “priority will be given to … training, equipment and support to the Libyan national coastguard and other relevant agencies.”
According to analysis by migrant researcher Matteo Villa at the Italian Institute for International Political Studies, “around 40,000 people have been intercepted at sea and brought back to Libya” since the 2017 agreements with Libya.
The civil refugee-rescue fleet — a small collection of NGOs that have been the main actors carrying out search-and-rescue missions in the central Mediterranean since April 2019 — condemned the EU’s support for the Libyan Coastguard.
Sophie Beau, international vice-president of SOS Mediterranee — which, along with Doctors Without Borders (MSF), operates the rescue ship Ocean Viking — said that the declaration “laid the foundation for a massive breach of international law, financed by European taxpayers’ money.
“While the European Union pulled back from saving lives at sea over the past years,” Ms Beau said, “they simultaneously financed, trained and equipped the Libyan Coastguard to intercept people fleeing the country.
“They are returning them to a cycle of violence and abuse in war-torn Libya.
“Rescued people on board endlessly report to us shocking experiences of torture, rape, slavery and even executions, and most of the survivors are hurt or traumatised.”
Axel Steier, co-founder of the German refugee rescue charity Mission Lifeline, told the Morning Star that Europe’s interests are clear: keep refugees away.
“Europe’s incantations of ‘We fight the smugglers’ are of no use,” Mr Steier said.
“As long as there are no legal entry routes, people will continue to flee across the sea.”
Article 33 of the 1951 Refugee Convention, of which all EU member states are signatories, states: “No contracting state shall expel or return (‘refouler’) a refugee in any manner whatsoever to the frontiers of territories where [their] life or freedom would be threatened on account of [their] race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion.”
Alarm Phone, an activist network providing support to people attempting to reach Europe by crossing the Mediterranean and Aegean seas, was equally damning.
“We do not doubt that Italy and Europe will continue to be the major collaborator with the cruel practices of the so-called Libyan Coastguard, thereby financing human-rights violations, making sea crossings even more dangerous, and forcibly pushing people back to a war zone and torture,” an Alarm Phone spokesperson told the Star.
“Italy and Europe are therefore fully responsible for the violence, deaths at sea and human-rights violations. By delegating to Libya they hide and deny their responsibility.
“But people on the move do not have a choice. In January alone, despite bad weather conditions, thousands of people made the deadly journey across the sea to flee war and violence.
“They do not have a voice in the conferences and deals between the EU and Libya, but many still bravely succeed in reaching Europe.
“We listen to them calling us in their hardest moments, struggling at sea in unseaworthy boats. We will continue to organise ourselves as part of the civil fleet for freedom of movement.”
Oxfam has accused the EU of using its aid money to Africa, particularly its emergency trust fund for stability and addressing root causes of irregular migration and displaced persons in Africa, as a policy tool to lower migration to Europe.
“Since July 2017,” a report released last week states, “nearly €90 million [£75.6m] has been released through the EUTF for Africa to train, equip and support the capacity of the Libyan coastguard to intercept migrants at sea and land borders …”
This 8 December 2018 video from Portugal says about itself:
Jeremy Corbyn urged Europe’s Socialists Friday to challenge the political establishment and team up with like-minded leftists to check the rise of “fake” right-wing populists.
It is correct to speak of ‘fake populists’; as racists are not populists.
“EU support for austerity and failed neoliberal policies have caused serious hardship for working people across Europe”, Corbyn said in a speech to the annual congress of the Party of European Socialists in Lisbon. It had “damaged the credibility of European social democratic parties and played a significant role in the vote for Brexit.”
He added that Europe must come together to fight against the rise of right-wing and neoliberal policies. Failing to do so “will smooth the path to power of the fake populists“, Corbyn said in a speech to the annual congress of the Party of European Socialists in Lisbon.
By Marcus Barnett:
Sunday, December 15, 2019
Film director Ken Loach urges European socialists to ‘clarify’ their stance on the EU
KEN LOACH has said that the European Union “works in the interests of big business” as he urged socialists to “clarify” their stance on the issue of Europe.
Addressing over 400 delegates in a video played at the Party of the European Left’s Congress on Sunday, the film-maker claimed that the left suffers from a muddled position when it approaches the question of the EU.
Mr Loach said that last week’s general election result, where Labour lost 59 seats in mostly Brexit-voting areas, was an example of this, and claimed that “the desire to leave” Brussels was a “big problem” for the left.
He also warned that the left’s voice on Europe hadn’t been heard by voters, adding that the analysis was “that the union is an economic organisation in the interests of big business.”
Mr Loach then urged socialists in Europe to “clarify” their analysis on Europe, and said that the international left must organise if it decides to not campaign against EU membership.
He said: “If we decide that we should remain and transform the [EU] then we have to have a plan that is clear, that we can all unite behind and which the left in every country can proclaim.
‘Remain and transform’ in itself sounds like an attractive slogan. However, the problem is that often, there is vagueness about how to transform. And about transforming to where.
And too often, remainers and transformers have allied with right-wing remainers who want to transform the European Union into an even more Thatcherite capitalist, xenophobic and warmongering organisation than it is already now: with Thatcherite Conservatives, Thatcherite Liberal Democrats, and Thatcherite right-wing Labourite Blairites like Iraq war criminal spin-doctor Alastair Campbell. That drove voters straight into the arms of Boris Johnson‘s right-wing Brexit.
A bit comparable to the Scottish independence referendum. The then Blairite right-wing leader of the Labour party in Scotland, Jim Murphy, decided to campaign against Scottish independence, jointly with the Conservative and Liberal Democrat parties, instead of waging a clearly separate campaign. That drove many Labour voters into the arms of the Scottish nationalists. That way, Jim Murphy, with a little help from Tony Blair and other Blairites, managed to destroy Scotland as a bulwark of Labour party voters. Labour in Scotland has still not recovered from that Murphy-Blair blow.
LEN McCLUSKEY has said that it is “wilful blindness” to deny that Labour lost the election because of Brexit. The Unite general secretary stated that it is “pretty obvious” that the reason for Labour losing 59 seats — including in traditionally Labour-voting areas — was because of its Remain-leaning stance on Brexit: here.
The dog whistle message from hardcore Remainers was heard loud and clear – Leavers were ‘thick and racist,’ writes RHEIAN DAVIES (herself a Labour member who had voted Remain).
TRADE union figures in the north-east have mocked Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s pledge that he will “repay the trust” placed in him by working-class voters in the region who switched their support from Labour to the Tories in the general election. Alan Mardghum, general secretary of the Durham Miners’ Association, told the Morning Star today: “When he made statements about the lazy unemployed, single mothers and the feckless working class, that is what he believes. That is the contempt he has for working people: here.
“Our Future Our Choice” is seen as a spontaneous “youth” movement against Brexit. But latest figures from the Electoral Commission show that, as the “second-referendum” campaign fell apart, it gave £20k to a group run by former New Labour hatchet man Alastair Campbell (62 years old) and Tory Peer Patience Wheatcroft (68 years old). Wheatcroft is a former Sunday Telegraph editor, one-time Barclays director and lifelong Tory activist: here.
This 19 June 2019 video from the British parliament says about itself:
Boris Johnson has been labelled ‘racist’ in the House of Commons by the Scottish National party’s Westminster leader, who said the Conservative leadership frontrunner was ‘unfit’ to be prime minister. Ian Blackford asked [then still Conservative Prime Minister] Theresa May if she agreed with Johnson that the Scottish people were a verminous race who should be ‘exterminated’, referring to a poem published in the Spectator when Johnson was the magazine’s editor.
From daily The Morning Star in Britain, 13 December 2019, when there were still only exit polls about the British election:
Brexit backlash hits Labour hard, exit poll suggests
EXIT polls have suggested a Tory landslide, with Leave-voting areas switching away from Labour according to predictions.
A visibly shocked [Labour party] John McDonnell told the BBC that “Brexit has dominated” the election.
Meanwhile, results have confirmed the predictions.
How did Boris Johnson’s Conservatives win more seats, giving them an absolute majority of MPs?
Not by increasing their number of votes. That was 43,6%, only 1,2% more than the 2017 election. And voter turnout was lower than in 2017. Maybe because of voters not turning up out of disgust about politicians talking for or against Brexit, Brexit, Brexit and very little else. Instead of about peace; of Conservative attacks on disabled and other poor people; about stopping racism and homophobia; etc.
The Conservatives won seats because Labour, after their biggest progress, with their new leader Jeremy Corbyn, in votes since 1945 in the 2017 election, lost. They fell back to 32.2%. Still more than their share at the 2015 election: 30,5%, under their then leader Ed Miliband, less leftist than Corbyn.
“We thought other issues could cut through and there would be a wider debate, from this evidence there clearly wasn’t,” the shadow chancellor [John McDonnell] said.
Labour’s bad result was
following its decision to campaign for a second referendum on EU membership. …
The Brexit issue is more complex than it seems. Both European Union Brexiteers and European Union Remainers really have two contradictory tendencies. Among Remainers, there are Thatcherite Conservatives, right-wing Labour Blairites and other champions of austerity, anti-refugee xenophobia and neocolonial wars all over the world. On the other hand, there is the ‘Remain and transform’ tendency. It says that, by staying inside the European Union, British socialists can transform the European Union pro-austerity capitalism to socialism (a task maybe only slightly less enormous than transforming NATO from a nuclear-armed warmongering organisation into a pacifist and socialist organisation. But that is another issue).
Then, Brexiteers. Boris Johnson won this election by saying little else than Get Brexit done. That seems to have appealed not only to hard-core Brexiteers, but also maybe to some people who are not strongly against European Union membership, but who are tired of politicians endlessly talking about up with Brexit, down with Brexit and very little else.
Johnson cleverly hid during the campaign WHAT kind of Brexit should be ‘done’ by the electorate. He and other right-wingers want a Brexit making Britain a hard-line Thatcherite country, slave to Donald Trump’s USA. When Trump visited Britain recently, Johnson, as a clever but hypocritical election campaign tactic, avoided Trump.
There are also many working-class people who helped Brexit to a majority in the 2016 referendum. Not out of love for Johnson’s Thatcherism. But because they don’t like austerity imposed by Brussels. Or don’t like European Union anti-refugee policies.
Unfortunately, the Remain and transform tendency was powerless against their ‘Remain and make the European Union even more capitalist and militarist’ ‘allies’. As unfortunately, in this election people who want to leave the European Union to make Britain more socialist, lost out to Boris Johnson’s Brexiteers who want to leave to make Britain more Trumpist capitalist.
Many working-class voters, it seems, especially in northern England, were so repelled by Blairite pro-European Union Labour MPs, millstones around Corbyn’s neck, that they stayed at home. Or, in some cases, even voted Conservative ‘to get Brexit done’. Unfortunately, not realizing that Johnson’s Brexit is not their Brexit.
Many are in the north-east of England, [traditionally Labour] constituencies which voted predominantly for Leave, such as historical mining constituency Blyth Valley.
The Labour party were not the only losers in this election. The most pro-European Union party, the Liberal Democrats, lost. Their leader Jo Swinson lost her seat.
All pro-European Union Blairite Labour and Thatcherite Conservative MPs who had left their parties lost their seats in this election.
Not all was gloom and doom for Remainers. In Scotland, there was a big victory for the Scottish National Party. An argument for Scotland becoming independent and thus remaining in the European Union.
Mr McDonnell added that he had doubts “Brexit will be done as a result of this.”
“I think what will happen… people, I think, almost in despair, wanted to get Brexit over and done with because they’ve had enough of what’s been going on.”
Shadow justice secretary Richard Burgeon also suggested that Brexit dictated the vote.
He Tweeted: “If, as it seems, this was a Brexit election then the next one won’t be given Johnson’s Thatcherite agenda.”
But he vowed to continue the fight against the Tories.
Mr McDonnell warned that the result would put “the most right-wing extreme cabinet that we’ve seen in our history” in power who would have the mandate to introduce “reactionary policies.”
Meanwhile, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has announced that he won’t be the leader at the next election. One should hope that his successor won’t be some Blairite. That would make Labour even smaller than the Liberal Democrats. Corbyn’s successor should be at least as left-wing as he.
This 23 January 2018 video says about itself:
New videos expose torture of African refugees in Libya
New videos have emerged showing African refugees being abused in Libya. Illegal detention centres, extortion and slavery have become common as many people trying to reach Europe are either caught or returned to Libya.
Al Jazeera’s Osama Bin Javaid reports.
By Ben Cowles:
Monday, December 2, 2019
THE European maritime authorities are ducking their responsibility for refugees crossing the Mediterranean and, worse, are referring NGO rescue ships to “criminal groups”, the refugee rescue fleet has told the Star.
Two NGO-operated ships, the Alan Kurdi and the Ocean Viking, saved over 100 people from unseaworthy boats during three separate missions in the central Mediterranean last Thursday after the refugees had fled human rights abuses in Libya.
Both ships contacted the Libyan maritime authorities, as international law dictates, but their calls were ignored.
Maltese and Italian authorities have been asked to provide the rescue ships with a port of safety, but none had been offered by the time the Star went to press.
Conditions on board the Alan Kurdi — operated by German charity Sea Eye and named after a three-year-old Syrian-Kurdish boy whose dead body washed up on a Turkish beach in 2015 — have deteriorated dramatically since it rescued 84 people last week.
“It’s insane. No-one is taking responsibility for this,” Sea Eye’s head of communication Julian Pahlke told the Star.
This photo shows Sea Eye’s crew pulling refugees from an unseaworthy boat in the central Mediterranean.
“Four people collapsed on board the ship on Sunday. Two people have collapsed today. A woman tried to kill herself on Saturday by jumping overboard. She was evacuated to Malta.
“Everyone on board is exhausted. It’s cold and it’s windy and people are sleeping on deck covered in blankets. Our team is so stressed that it’s getting hard for them to look after the rescued.”
The Ocean Viking — jointly operated by SOS Mediterranee and Doctors Without Borders (MSF) — was in international waters between Malta and the Italian island of Lampedusa with 60 refugees on board as the Star went to press. Its crew also refused to break international law.
“Libya cannot be considered a place of safety,” SOS Mediterranee director of operations Frederic Penard told the Star.
“Everybody says this every day, including European leaders and their governments. The situation in the country is very well documented.
“But at the same time, European leaders refuse to accept responsibility for the co-ordination of some of our cases, including the designation of a port of safety, and they keep referring us back to the Libyan coastguard, which is unable to provide a place of safety because their country is not safe.
“The European Union’s policies here are grossly incoherent. On the one hand, they clearly acknowledge that the situation in Libya is a problem, which clearly disqualifies the country as being safe. But on the other hand they refuse to abide by international maritime conventions.”
The EU withdrew all of its search and rescue ships in April after pressure from Italy’s then far-right … coalition government. Since then, a small number of NGO ships have been the only vessels in the Mediterranean carrying out the humanitarian work formerly done by the bloc.
Many NGO activists have been persecuted for their efforts and charities such as Sea Watch, Mediterranea Saving Humans, Mission Lifeline and Jugend Rettet have had their ships seized by the Italian and Maltese authorities.
MSF UK humanitarian representative Liz Harding warned that despite the EU’s extremely limited dedicated search and rescue presence in the Mediterranean, people continue to attempt to cross the world’s deadliest migration route.
Ms Harding told the Star: “MSF calls on EU member states, including the UK, to urgently provide proactive and sufficient search and rescue capacity in the Mediterranean Sea, as well as to end punitive actions against NGOs trying to provide life-saving assistance.
“Additionally, there must be sustainable, reliable and predictable disembarkation mechanism for survivors in safe places where they will be treated humanely and will be able to seek asylum. Libya is not, and cannot be considered, a place of safety.”
You can follow the Star’s coverage of the civil refugee rescue fleet here.
A FIVE-DAY standoff that left over 100 refugees stranded at sea finally came to an end today when the EU authorities allowed two NGO rescue ships to dock in Italy. The Alan Kurdi, operated by German charity Sea Eye, and the Ocean Viking, crewed jointly by SOS Mediterranee and Doctors Without Borders (MSF), saved the lives of 144 refugees last Thursday in three separate missions. It wasn’t until yesterday afternoon, however, when the Palermo mayor Leoluca Orlando responded to the Alan Kurdi’s plea for shelter on Twitter that the two ships were granted a port of safety: here.
‘It shouldn’t be civil society versus European governments’. SOS Mediterranee’s DAVID STARKE tells the Star how EU member states have abandoned their commitments to international maritime and refugee laws when it comes to rescues carried out by the civil rescue fleet.
German Protestant Church raising funds to join civil refugee rescue fleet in the Mediterranean: here.