Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
by Bernard (bernard) on Sat Jun 4th, 2022 at 06:26:56 PM EST
The world's ten most neglected crises are all in Africa - Norwegian Refugee Council
The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is once again the world's most neglected displacement crisis according to the Norwegian Refugee Council's (NRC) annual analysis. For the first time, the top 10 list is comprised entirely of African countries.

The annual list of neglected displacement crises is based on three criteria: lack of funding, lack of media attention, and lack of international political and diplomatic initiatives. The DRC is followed by Burkina Faso, Cameroon and South Sudan on top of the bleak ranking.

"That the world's most neglected crises are all in Africa points to the chronic failure of decision makers, donors and the media to address conflict and human suffering on this continent," said Jan Egeland, Secretary General of the Norwegian Refugee Council, launching the report today. "With the all-absorbing war in Europe's Ukraine, I fear African suffering will be pushed further into the shadows."

by Bernard (bernard) on Sun Jun 5th, 2022 at 12:18:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
euractiv | EU steps up efforts to debunk Putin's food security propaganda, 2 June
"'Our sanctions don't affect the exports of food and fertilisers from Russia,' a senior EU official stressed, referring to issues raised by Macky Sall, President of Senegal and Chair of the African Union, in his address to EU leaders at their summit on Tuesday (31 May)."

S&P Global | EU's Russian ships insurance ban to distort commodities trade: sources, 2 June

The views from the shipping market follow a recent remark from Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, saying that there is a ban on insurance and reinsurance of Russian ships by EU companies. The remark raised concerns in the commodities markets amid a lack of clarity whether the ban would cover ships transporting Russian oil or other commodities. There is a built-in clause in all protection and indemnity, or P&I insurance agreements, that any voyage of a ship to a sanctioned location under UN, EU, UK and US laws will automatically make it ineligible for the cover, a maritime insurance executive said in Singapore.
Those ships which undertake voyages to and from Russia will not get any insurance cover of Western P&I clubs but can still manage to do trade based on national clubs and sovereign guarantee provided by countries willing to trade with it, a chartering executive with a global commodities trading company said. He pointed to the model of trade adopted with Iran when half a dozen countries including India, Japan and Taiwan were initially exempted from the Western sanctions against Iran. A similar approach is possible as several countries from Hungary to India are still willing to trade with Russia, he said.
Kremlin.ru | Meeting with Chairman of the African Union, President of Senegal Macky Sall, 3 June
Marty Sall (retranslated): ...
I thank you for  calling when we were able to speak at the very beginning of the crisis, and I thank you for hosting us here today - me not only as the President of Senegal, but also as the President of the African Union. With me today is also the Chairperson of the African Union Commission.

Indeed, Russia played a huge role in the independence of the African continent, which the African continent will never be able to forget, and it is in the name of this friendship that I am here as well.

We have high hopes for our cooperation, including bilateral cooperation between Russia and the African continent, but we are also here today to talk about the crisis and its consequences.
Sanctions against Russia have further exacerbated this situation, and now we do not have access to grains from Russia, especially wheat from Russia. And, most importantly, we do not have access to fertilizers, because the situation was already difficult, and now it is even more difficult, and this has consequences for food security in Africa.

Sputnik | Anti-Russia Sanctions Left Africa Without Access to Grain and Fertilisers, African Union Chief Says, 3 June
Ahead of Friday's visit, Sall's office indicated that the trip was "part of the efforts of the current chairmanship of the [African] Union to contribute to the lull in the war in Ukraine, and the release of stocks of grain and fertilizer whose blockage particularly affects African countries".
Sall also expressed concerns about Europe's move to bar Russian banks from the SWIFT global payment system.
by Cat on Sun Jun 5th, 2022 at 11:37:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
TeleSur | Venezuela and Qatar Review Progress in Bilateral Relations, 15 June
sinde 7 June, Maduro also has made official visits to Türkiye, Algeria, Iran, Kuwait.
UAE Bans Exports of Wheat & Flour Originating From India, 15 June Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA)
India has faced severe criticism from the [UKRAINE ALLIES] since it imposed restrictions on wheat exports on 13 May [after US, EU imposed sanctions against RU shipping, commercial "entities," and SWIFT transactions].

India's Foreign Minister S. Jaishankar has suggested his country's export ban was imposed to prevent "diversion to high-income countries."

The Indian minister alleged that international traders based out of Singapore and Dubai stocked [hoarded] Indian wheat to later sell it off, resulting in a four-fold price increase [like, say, COVID-19 "vaccines" and patent-protected pHARMA licenses].

euractiv | EU-India clash over push on free trade of food, 16 June all UR "GRAINS" belong to us
To plug the trade gap left by the war, the EU and other Western countries stress the need for trade flows to continue at all costs, while others advocate for countries' right to safeguard food stocks for their own populations. Since [PUTIN'S WAR] started on 24 February, some 27 [?] countries, including India, have put [export] restrictions in place.
how to lie like a shag-pile "geopolitical power" sanctions carpet
Meanwhile, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has urged [REST OF WORLD] not to impose any restrictions on trade.

"The European Union keeps its food exports going [FALSE], and so should everyone else [except you-know-who]," she said following a meeting of EU leaders on 9 June.

Macron-Trump-guided WTO "reform" with a twist
"The WTO's attacks against our model of market regulation are extremely dangerous. The G33 [EME!] must continue to resist and build based on the aspirations and hopes of small-scale producers," he concluded.

Meanwhile, Morgan Ody, a French small farmer and general coordinator of La Via Campesina, called the WTO a "failed project".

"[We] call on all states, especially those in the South, to leave the WTO immediately. We must create a new international framework for agriculture and trade based on food sovereignty. Only then can we defend the interests of small-scale food producers," she said.

IISD | Russia Plans to Exit World Trade Organization and Other Global Bodies, 6 June

coceral | MY 2021/2022 Total Grain Production per Country, 27 May
European Association of cereals, rice, feedstuffs, oilseeds, olive oil, oils and fats and agrosupply trade
circabc.europa.eu | Cereals Market Situation, 2 June *.ppt
EU Committee for the Common Organisation of Agricultural Markets: MY 2021/2022 world production: world consumption, etc; MY 2022/2023 forecast

A: not even close to; src: AgManager | Grain Market Impacts a/o 21 Mar 2022


Jaishankar: The answer is "B": You don't understand in the west. But it isn't just the west. I don't think people understand, because they are not actually tracking the trade. We have been exporting wheat. ... But what we then saw was a kind of run on our wheat, a large part of it done by international traders base out of Singapore and to some degree, maybe Dubai. The result was actually the low-income countries many of whom are our traditional buyers like our neighbor Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Napal ... the Gulf buys regularly from us... Sudan ... Yemen ... What we saw was the low-income buyers were being squeezed out in a way our goodwill was being used for speculation. So we had to do something to stop that.
Somewhere Europe has to grow out of the mind-set that  Europe's problems are the world's problems, but the world's problems are not Europe's. That it is you, it's yours; if it is me, it's ours.
USDA-certified Crop Calendars and Stock-to-Use Ratios to maximize profit
by Cat on Thu Jun 16th, 2022 at 06:55:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Explosive demand growth Europe's problems could lead to supply shortages in raw materials, 17 June
As around 19 of the 30 raw materials that the European Commission has labelled `critical' are primarily produced in China, there is a high risk that these dependencies could lead to supply ["]disruptions["] for the EU's industrial sector.
The EU's dependency on China is particularly high when it comes to rare earths, a crucial element for many high-tech products, where China accounts for 95% of the bloc's imports.

"We should not accept that we have more than 25% of raw materials coming from one geographic area, whatever this area is, as such a dependency implies huge supply risks," [World Material Summit chair Phillipe] Varin added.

The dependency on China is even higher when it comes to the first stage of processing many of these critical raw materials intermediate goods. Andre Wolf, divisional head at the Centre for European Policy, told EURACTIV: "When it comes to the first stage of processing intermediate goods, I see perhaps an even greater dependence on China than it is the case regarding the physical concentration of reserves raw materials."

According to Wolf, China has already achieved a technological lead in this area, which would make it difficult for Europe to catch up in the foreseeable future.

wheat, cotton, tea, rice, gold, coal, iron, titanium, oil + gas, esters + hydrogen ...
The availability of strategic raw materials is also mentioned in the priorities of the upcoming Czech Presidency in the EU. The growth of  demand in the [EU, US] bloc is primarily driven by the Commission's goal of achieving [advanced economy] carbon neutrality.
2019: Canada Sends Warships Through Sensitive Taiwan Strait
IPEF "anti-China" Summit
Habeck trade diplomacy
the Middle Finger
To boost the diversification of supply chains, the EU is additionally also working on partnerships on raw materials with third states.

On Tuesday, the European Commission - alongside France and Germany - entered a Mineral Security Partnership with Australia, Japan, South Korea and the United Kingdom to address the growing international demand EXISTENTIAL CRISIS.

However, according to Varin, more needs to be done in this regard. "We have to engage in a materials diplomacy that is forging long-term partnerships with friendly states and get access to resource-rich countries", Varin said, adding that ["]relations["] with Africa will be crucial here.

by Cat on Fri Jun 17th, 2022 at 10:07:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Politico.eu.com | EU  chief urges EU to ease food payments to Russia, 20 June aspirations
Senegalese President Macky Sall, who currently chairs the African Union, on Sunday called on Brussels to provide some scope for African countries to pay for imported cereals and fertilizers from Russia despite EU sanctions excluding Russian banks from [SWIFT] payment systems.

"We want to pay, but it is becoming impossible. So we ask the Europeans for the same mechanism as for gas and oil," Sall told Le Journal du Dimanche in an interview.[...] That problem was also discussed during a bilateral meeting in Paris between Sall and French President Emmanuel Macron last week. Macron then told Sall that disruptions have nothing to do with EU sanctions, according to an Elysée official.

EU to AU: Russian naval blockade of the GLOBAL GATEWAY to more than 20M mt of Ukrainian feed grain is a you problem.
Sall said that Senegal is not dependent on grain imports, but warned that fertilizer shortages will have an impact on local production.

"The destabilization of Africa due to famine is as important as the outcome of the war in Ukraine today," the African leader warned.

by Cat on Mon Jun 20th, 2022 at 11:06:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
SWIFT messaging systems, free trade, demand or supply, arms sales, GHG emissions, IMF loan origination, EME debt burden, WORLD HUNGER,  ...

Politico.eu.com | G7 to discuss Russian oil price cap fixing via sanctions relief waiver sales, 24 June INNOVATION

Western countries NATO members are becoming increasingly frustrated that their currency embargoes on Russian oil have had the counterproductive effect of driving up the global petrol [sic] prices, meaning that Moscow, which continues to sell oil to countries such as India [!] and China [!], ends up earning more money for its war chest federal budget.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet "transitory *flation" Yellen has proposed to tackle this issue market failure with a price cap fixing: The idea is that the EU and ["post-BREXIT"] U.K., which are currently trying to restrain hamper Russian oil sales trade by banning maritime insurance for the cargo any ships that transport oil Russian cargo, would lift this sanction for those countries that accepted to only buy Russian oil at an agreed maximum REPowerEU Versaille "collective" market intervention "partnership" USD- or EUR-denominated price.

a distrubance in the antitrust "modern democracies" farce
In addition, the [European Council and Council of the] EU would have to amend its latest sanctions package to lift ship insurance bans.

"It's all very, very complex ... but we're working together very constructively to get it done," a senior German official said.

by Cat on Sat Jun 25th, 2022 at 04:41:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
lifted out of my bookmark attic ...

EU SANCTIONS MAP, last updated 19 June 2022

I offer no warranties as to the accuracy, scale efficiencies, and US sanctions, ahem, synergistic properties represented therein.

by Cat on Sun Jun 26th, 2022 at 03:30:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I sit corrected.

Legit "restrictive measures" list numbering 15 "in view of" Russia (2014 to date) provided at EUR-Lex.

COUNCIL REGULATION (EU) No 833/2014 as amended

by Cat on Sun Jun 26th, 2022 at 04:02:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
euractiv | Humble potato 'must go to Africa', Germany insists
Partnering with the private sector, Germany wants more potatoes to take root in Sub-Saharan Africa in an effort to address chronic food shortages. But development aid groups are sceptical about mixing business interests with public funding.

"The potato must go to Africa," said Hans-Jürgen Beerfeltz, state secretary at the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), a few months ago.

Beerfeltz kept a straight face as he marked the launch of the Potato Initiative Africa (PIA), which is supported by the BMZ.

DW | With VWAST ARABLE lands, why does Africa need to import grain?

Even before the RUSSIAN invasion in late February, the pandemic and a long period of drought had already hit African economies hard. The war in UKRAINE made things critically worse since the continent imported about a third of its wheat from RUSSIA and UKRAINE. With food prices skyrocketing in global markets, even those countries not reliant on imports from RUSSIA and UKRAINE are suffering.
cash crop theory
Africans produce food, but not for themselves
A major part of African farmlands is used to grow crops such as coffee, cocoa, and cottonseed oil for export, while the ["]staple crops["] of the African diet, wheat, and rice, mainly come from outside of the continent.

Much of this imported food could be produced locally [for export?],according to the World Bank, while African countries' self-sufficiency could also be boosted by replacing foreign cereal with regional [staple] crops such as fonio, teff, sorghum, amaranth, and millet.

The mass production of exportable crops, its proponents argue, helps Africa's agriculture develop and modernize and gives African nations economic sway in the global market. But with the war in UKRAINE threatening global food supplies, [AFRICAN] production and distribution will need to adapt.

by Cat on Fri Jul 1st, 2022 at 02:01:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
euractiv | G7 countries pledge extra billions to fight global food crisis, 29 June MILLENIUM $1-per-day diet exacerbated by RUSSIA's war in UKRAINE
In a separate statement on global food security, the seven leaders also stressed their commitment to the goal agreed in 2015 of lifting 500 million people out of hunger and malnutrition by 2030.

"We currently have 345 million people who we know do not have enough to eat. That is four times as many people as live in Germany," Scholz, whose country currently chairs the G7, told journalists on Tuesday.
The additional funds are intended to be coordinated by the so-called [GLOBAL GATEWAY] Global Alliance for Food Security, which German Development Minister Svenja Schulze recently launched together with World Bank [US] President David Malpass.

Millenium Challenge: It's a war game AND a perpetual poverty relief policy!
Lifting the blockade of UKRAINian Black Sea ports
In addition to providing emergency aid to countries 500 MILLION PEOPLE affected by food insecurity, the seven leaders also agreed on a common position on RUSSIA's blockade of the UKRAINian Black Sea ports, which currently prevents the country from exporting much of its stored grain.

"We strongly support UKRAINE in resuming its agricultural EXPORTS to world markets, as well as the UN's [BWAH!] efforts to establish a secure maritime corridor through the Black Sea," the statement said.

ORF | G20's Debt Service Suspension Initiative: A historical comparison, 28 June
Paris Club, London Club, Brady Plan, and the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative (HIPC)
by Cat on Fri Jul 1st, 2022 at 02:28:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The United States Extends Its Military Reach Into Zambia, 1 July AFRICOM
On April 26, 2022, the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM) announced that they had set up an office in the U.S. Embassy in Lusaka, Zambia. According to AFRICOM Brigadier General Peter Bailey, Deputy Director for Strategy, Engagement and Programs, the Office of Security Cooperation would be based in the U.S. Embassy building. Social media in Zambia buzzed with rumors about the creation of a U.S. military base in the country. Defense Minister Ambrose Lufuma released a statement[3 May] to say that "Zambia has no intention whatsoever of establishing or hosting any military bases on Zambian soil." "Over our dead bodies" will the United States have a military base in Zambia, said Dr. Fred M'membe, the president of the Socialist Party of Zambia.
That can be arranged. Patrice Lumumba's tooth
Brigadier General Bailey of AFRICOM had met with Zambia's President Hakainde Hichilema during his visit to Lusaka. Hichilema's government faces serious economic challenges despite the fact that Zambia has one of the richest resources of raw materials in the world. When Zambia's total public debt grew to nearly $27 billion (with an external debt of approximately $14.5 billion), it returned to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in December 2021 for financial assistance, resulting in an IMF-induced spiral of debt.

Two months after Hichilema met with the AFRICOM team, he hosted IMF Deputy Managing Director Antoinette M. Sayeh in June, who thanked President Hichilema for his commitment to the IMF "reform plans." These plans include a general austerity package ["structural adjustment programming"] that will not only cause the Zambian population to be in the grip of poverty but will also prevent the Zambian government from exercising its sovereignty.
The real intentions, M'membe told me, are for the United States to use Zambia's location "to monitor, to control, and to quickly reach the other countries in the region." Zambia and its neighbor, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, he said, "possess not less than 70 percent of the world's cobalt reserves. There are huge copper reserves and other minerals needed for modern technologies [in both these countries]." Partly, M'membe said, "this is what has heightened interest in Zambia." Zambia is operating as a "puppet regime," M'membe said, a government that is de jure independent but de facto "completely dependent on an outside power and subject to its orders," M'membe added, while referring to the U.S. interference in the functioning of the Zambian government. Despite his campaign promises in 2021, President Hichilema has followed the same IMF-dependent policies as his unpopular predecessor Edgar Lungu.
Zambia's Defense Minister Lufuma [now] argues that the "office" set up in Lusaka is to assist the Zambian forces in the United Nations Multidimensional Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA). Since 2014, the United States has provided around 136 million kwacha ($8 million) to assist the Zambian military. Lufuma said that this office will merely continue that work. In fact, Zambia is not even one of the top five troop contributing countries to MINUSCA (these include Bangladesh, Cameroon, Egypt, Pakistan and Rwanda).

Neither Zambia nor the United States military has made public the agreement signed in April. ...

archived World Bank: "the resource-rich countries that host these strategic minerals"
by Cat on Fri Jul 1st, 2022 at 05:02:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
US sending $9 million in food aid to [204,000 war] refugees in Tanzania, 1 July
The aid comes as global food supplies tighten amid an ongoing war in UKRAINE.
• The funds will be given through the U.S. Agency for International Development [USAID].  
• The funds will go towards purchasing 12,000 metric tons of maize.
Displaced people from BURUNDI make up the majority of the refugees living in Tanzania but about a quarter are from the DRC, according to the [Norwegian Refugee Council] NFC.  

Food supplies in Tanzania, for native Tanzanians and those living in refugee camps, are shrinking in part due to the ongoing war in UKRAINE.  

African countries rely heavily on RUSSIA and UKRAINE for wheat imports with Tanzania, Senegal[,] and Rwanda importing 60 percent of their wheat supply from both countries, according to Newsweek [6 June].

U.S. Warns Starving African Nations to Not Buy Grain Stolen by RUSSIA
by Cat on Fri Jul 1st, 2022 at 04:34:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]

CFR | EU Task Force Takuba in Mali, 8 Dec 2020
A Franco-Estonian elite unit, styled Task Force Takuba, has arrived in northern Mali and is based near the city of Gao. Czech and Swedish forces are due to arrive soon. From media reports, the deployments go beyond the training and support of indigenous military.

The contributing elements are from each country's elite special forces units, and they will also work with the regular French troops deployed since 2013 as part of Operation Barkhane. Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway, and Greece have made commitments to send special forces to Mali, as has Italy ...

europarl | End of European operations in and commitments to Mali, 15 Mar 2022
Since 2012, France and several of its European partners have been present in Mali to help ensure regional security. A total of 53 French soldiers have lost their lives in Operation Barkhane, a military campaign protecting Mali from the Islamist threat.
Given the Malian junta's hostility towards the EU and France, will the Commission put an end to its commitments to Mali and all these subsidies?
Forsvarsmakten | Task Force Takuba suspended - new challenges await, 25 Apr 2022
"The reason was the Malian junta's unwillingness to hold democratic elections and their cooperation with the Russian Wagner Group that had sent mercenaries to Mali."
by Cat on Mon Jun 6th, 2022 at 04:07:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Mali has had a coup in 2020 and one in 2021.

Wagner company arrived in January 2022, western forces started leaving in February 2022.

Western forces leaving now is more likely due to the Mali governments collaboration with the Wagner company than any concern for democracy.

by fjallstrom on Wed Jun 8th, 2022 at 09:54:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No. The Malian army got a deal with Wagner, once it was clear that the French would leave without elections. They have never been able to deal with the insurgency in the North. In 2012 they were comprehensively beaten, and lost the whole of the north of the country, to a ragtag assortment of tribal militias. And promptly overthrew the elected government.

Mali is under African Union and West African regional sanctions because of those goons' refusal to schedule elections on a reasonable timetable. In those conditions, France can't stay.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Wed Jun 8th, 2022 at 01:00:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Neither can other Europeans.
by Bernard (bernard) on Wed Jun 8th, 2022 at 08:41:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Defeat and Withdrawal of French Forces Mali

Spain Urges NATO Role Southern Flank

Macron announces French troop withdrawal from Mali | France24 - Feb 17, 2022 |

Recent coups in Mali, Chad and Burkina Faso have weakened French alliances and emboldened jihadists who control large swathes of the region.

French special forces 'to protect' Niger uranium mines | France24 - Jan 25, 2013 |

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Wed Jun 8th, 2022 at 11:32:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
France24 | France captures Islamic State group leader in Mali, 15 June FRANCE 24 is SUCH rubbish proves the rule: exit strategy
by Cat on Thu Jun 16th, 2022 at 02:37:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
multipolarista | Only 4 of 55 African leaders attend Zelensky [telethon], 22 June
France and Germany put heavy pressure on African governments to attend the Zoom call, which was held on June 20.
France's major newspaper Le Monde described Zelensky's video call as "an address that the African Union (AU) has delayed for as long as possible and has been keen to keep discreet, almost secret." Ukraine had tried to organize the conference since April, but the AU had repeatedly pushed it back.
Citing an internal source, The Africa Report identified the very few African heads of state who attended the call as [AU and] Senegal's President Macky Sall, Côte d'Ivoire's President Alassane Ouattara, [Mohamed al-Menfi from Libya Presidential Council, Moussa Faki from AU Commission,] and the Republic of the Congo's President Denis Sassou Nguesso.
The only official recognition of the call came from Faki, in a lone tweet [?], in which he cautiously "reiterated the AU position of the urgent need for dialogue to end the conflict to allow peace to return to the Region and to restore global stability."
The Africa Report | Stop blaming Russia-Ukraine War for Africa's fertiliser woes, 22 June
counter-cyclical local governments' tenders, futures contracts
by Cat on Fri Jun 24th, 2022 at 12:44:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
S&P Global | Ukraine conflict ripples across global agriculture markets as Russia tightens grip on ports and Black Sea trade, 26 Feb 2022 GRAPHIC WARNING
UA (corn, wheat, oil) and RU wheat export destinations MY 2020/2021

S&P Global | Factbox [ditto], 24 Feb 2022

Sunflower oil Trade flows
Sunflower oil shipments from Ukraine and Russia were halted following the news of bombings in Ukraine, with buyers finding it difficult to track their orders, trade sources told S&P Global Platts Feb. 24. Some Indian buyers with stuck cargoes were looking to book alternative shipments to meet their requirements.
Wheat Trade flow
Ukraine has seen a 27% rise in its wheat shipments so far in the marketing year 2021-22 (July['21] to June ['22]), with exports rising to 16.1 million mt, as neighboring Russia increased its export taxes. Platts Analytics projected Ukraine's wheat exports at 22.5 million mt in MY 2021-22.
Corn Trade flow
As of Feb. 14, Ukraine has exported 17.37 million mt of corn in the MY 2021-22, around 36.8% higher than the corresponding period last year, according to Ukraine's agriculture ministry data. In the ongoing MY 2021-22, Ukraine is likely to export 33 million mt of corn, sharply above the previous year's corn exports of about 23 million mt, S&P Global Platts Analytics said...
USDA | Russian Incursion into Ukraine Disrupts Global [coarse] Grain Market, 11 Mar 2022 export, ratio maps
Food Business Africa | China to allow imports of Brazilian corn to replace imports from Ukraine, 4 June 2022 competitively priced GMO surplus
"Currently, almost all of China's corn imports come from the United States and Ukraine but According to analyst Paulo Molinari, "This year it (China) has already met its demand that came from Ukraine, replacing it with American corn."
by Cat on Mon Jun 6th, 2022 at 05:09:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Seattle NY Times | Russia seeks buyers for plundered Ukraine grain, U.S. warns, 5 June
In mid-May, the United States sent an alert to 14 countries, mostly in Africa, that Russian cargo vessels were leaving ports near Ukraine laden with what a State Department cable described as "stolen Ukrainian grain." The cable identified by name three Russian cargo vessels it said were suspected of transporting it.
Ukrainian officials said the solution to Africa's food problem is greater global pressure to end the war, not purchases of looted grain. There is a "simple answer," Taras Vysotsky, Ukraine's deputy minister of agriculture, said: "Stop the fighting." Vysotsky and other Ukrainian ministers have been accusing Russia for months of stealing grain from the territories it occupies in the country's southern breadbasket, described by one as "outright robbery." Much of it has been taken from storage elevators in occupied parts of the Zaporizhzhia, Kherson, Donetsk and Luhansk regions, they say.
In the past month, the three Russian vessels identified in the State Department cable as suspected carriers of stolen Ukrainian grain -- the Matros Koshka, Matros Pozynich and Mikhail Nenashev -- traveled between the Straits of Kerch, which divide Crimea and Russia, and various ports in the eastern Mediterranean. ... Two U.S. officials confirmed the contents of the cable, which was sent May 16 to 14 countries, mostly in northern and eastern Africa, as well as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Turkey.(BEGIN OPTIONAL TRIM.)Determining the provenance of a grain shipment is not straightforward, but one indication might be if Russia were selling it at a heavy discount, one U.S. official said.
Turkey is a focus of the efforts to track stolen Ukrainian grain because Russian vessels leaving Crimea usually pass through Turkish waters. On Friday, Ukraine's ambassador to Turkey called on the authorities to investigate the source of Russian-transported grain. A spokesperson for Turkey's Foreign Ministry did not respond to a request for comment.
Pravda.com.ua | Zelenskyy rejects the idea of a "grain corridor" through Belarus, 6 June

src: USDA, Apr 2022
by Cat on Mon Jun 6th, 2022 at 09:20:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
euractiv | Russian, Turkish defence ministers discuss Syria, grain exports from Ukraine, 8 June
The New Yella Cake reported Monday that a number of freight vessels have departed Russia-controlled ports with what US officials have described as "stolen Ukrainian grain." Reportedly, the US alerted 14 countries, mostly in Africa, that Russian ships carrying stolen Ukrainian grain, could be headed their way.
UN | Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General, 7 June
Question:  Second question is on Ukraine.  The Ukraine Foreign Minister [inaudible] said that Russia is allegedly stealing Ukrainian grain and must be investigated.  Is the UN aware of such conduct of Russia in Ukraine?

[Stéphane Dujarric]:  We have seen... there were recent media reports.  We are talking to our colleagues at WFP (World Food Programme), who would be in the lead.  There is no...  they have no way of verifying these allegations.  I think WFP, as we all have, have been advocating for free movement of food from the Black Sea to ensure that the needs of people around the world are met, and that is what the Secretary‑General has been working towards.

Izvestiya | Ankara and Moscow will provide a corridor for grain from Odessa, 6 June
Moscow agreed with Kyiv and Ankara a preliminary scheme for the exit of Ukrainian ships with grain from Odessa: in the territorial waters of the neighboring country, the Turkish military will be engaged in de-mining, they will also escort the ships to neutral waters. There, the ships will meet Russian ships and escort them to the Bosphorus. This was stated to Izvestiya by a high-ranking informed source. According to him, so far the scheme has been agreed only for Odessa. The interlocutor also noted: all Ukrainian grain is now delivered to the EU by rail and bus, but it has not yet reached the end consumers. The Turkish parliament explained to Izvestiya that Ankara is participating in this operation, since it is important for it to resolve the world food problem.
As a high-ranking informed source told Izvestia, Ukraine agreed to allow Turkish ships into its territorial waters to clear mines from the agreed part of the water area and create a "grain corridor".
The scheme will be as follows: the Turkish military will be engaged in demining the coastal zone in the Odessa region. Vessels leave the port under the escort of Turkish ships to the neutral waters of the Black Sea, to the set coordinate. Further to the Bosporus, they will be escorted by Russian warships to ensure their safe passage through the Black Sea and prevent provocation.

According to him, the "road map" will be approved on June 8-9 during the visit of the heads of the Russian Foreign Ministry and the Defense Ministry to Turkey. Press Secretary of the President of Russia Dmitry Peskov has already confirmed that Sergei Lavrov during his visit to Ankara will discuss the issue of the export of grain.

The source also specified that UN representatives would also participate in the talks. Most likely, it will be the head of the humanitarian mission of the organization Martin Griffiths - on June 3, the diplomat arrived in Moscow to discuss with the Russian authorities the clearing of the sea route for the export of grain and other food products from the Black Sea ports of Ukraine, Reuters reported .
Izvestia asked the Russian embassies in Ankara and Turkey in Moscow for details.

"So far, grain from Ukraine is delivered by rail and trucks to the EU countries and Moldova, but we have not yet seen this grain reach the end consumers. This begs the question: won't the EU keep Ukrainian wheat as payment for arms supplies? - added the source of Izvestia.

by Cat on Thu Jun 9th, 2022 at 02:42:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
USDA Foreign Agricultural Service | EU, 26 Apr "football"
EU's total grain production for MY 2022/23 is anticipated to amount to 286 MMT, down from the 293 MMT registered the previous season [MY 2021/22]. The favorable growing conditions across the EU are not anticipated to counter the reduction expected in area planted to grains. Despite the overall good conditions, spring rains are particularly critical to avoid a tight grain balance. Russia's invasion of Ukraine has stressed the EU grains market, which has responded with increases in price, demand contraction, and a surge of intra EU trade. Increased grain exports are forecast for MY2021/22, while the EU seeks alternative corn sources to replace Ukraine's supply.
Bloomberg | Now the EU's Largest Wheat Crop Is at Risk From Record Heat, 19 May
by Cat on Mon Jun 6th, 2022 at 11:16:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
S&P Global | Japan weighs steps, 7 June
Japan will consider measures for the EU's imposition of its [EU] ban on insuring and financing seaborne transport of Russian oil to third countries because it will make it difficult to maintain its imports of Russian crude oil, a Japanese government source told S&P Global Commodity Insights on June 7.

"We are scrutinizing the impact for the energy security, and if there is any impact, we will consider measures," the source said, adding that the country's pledged phase-out of Russian oil imports will be gradual while ensure its energy security.

The move by Tokyo comes as Brussels' sixth sanctions against Russia published June 3 also includes prohibition of EU operators insuring and financing seaborne transport of Russian oil to third countries after a wind[ ]down period of six months.
Japan has a precedence [sic] of providing sovereignty guarantees for Iranian crude oil shipping in the face of the EU sanctions against Iran, having introduced a law in 2012 to compensate protection and indemnity cover per tanker carrying Iranian crude -- a scheme that remains operational to date.

archived Decades of EU-US sanctions against persons, "entities," and illegitimate or unrecognized states are piled so high now ...
by Cat on Tue Jun 7th, 2022 at 03:19:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The search for the weakest "mostly muslim"  UN, CIS, OSCE, OIC, ECO, SCO, CSTO, NATO PfP link continues

US Attempt to Stage an Armed Conflict in GBAR has Failed

In addition to the continuation of multifaceted destructive operations in Kazakhstan, attempts have continued to intensify the conflict situation in the Fergana Valley, to maintain ethno-separatist activity on the issue of so-called "independence for Karakalpakstan," and to provoke instability in Turkmenistan.

However, a particular focus of the "collective West" in this regard has been to undermine the situation and security in Tajikistan, both in the long-standing conflict on that country's border with Kyrgyzstan and in the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region (GBAR).

In order to prevent terrorist acts, ensure the safety of citizens, stability and tranquility, the rule of law and public order, and restore unobstructed traffic on the Dushanbe-Khorog-Kulma international highway, the country's law enforcement agencies launched an anti-terrorist operation on May 18. As a result, about ten militants were killed and an equal number wounded, while 114 members of the terrorist group were detained. Significant quantities of weapons, explosives and communications equipment were seized. No civilians were injured during the anti-terrorist operation, the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Tajikistan reported.
It should also not be forgotten that Tajikistan experienced a bloody civil war in the early [post-USSR] 1990s, and GBAR was one of the centers of opposition there. Many of its natives were members of the terrorist group Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan (IRPT) banned in Russia, and other banned opposition political movements. A number of them moved after the war to Afghanistan and elsewhere.
The involvement of the United States and its Western "allies" in exacerbating the situation in GBAR was particularly confirmed by the active role not only of blatantly pro-Western NGOs in the country, but also of a number of Western-funded local media, whose publications did not correspond to the real state of affairs, but demonstrated the true intentions of those who ordered the events. Particularly active in this regard were journalists from Radio Ozodi and their colleagues, long known as Western grantees. It should be recalled that Radio Ozodi is the Tajik service of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty [2018] (recognized in Russia as a foreign media agent). Thus, despite the fact that the authorities demonstrated significant quantities of weapons seized and the material evidence of the criminal activities of the detainees obtained during the anti-terrorist operation, the coverage of the events in GBAR of Tajikistan by Radio Ozodi and the "independent" press affiliated with it, paid for by Western intelligence services, used distorted estimates....

by Cat on Sun Jun 5th, 2022 at 08:32:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
9 Feb 2022


The `same-page' networks, branded under the Pakistani flag and Khan's popularity, together populated trends in favour of Kashmir and against India, but also those in favour of Khan. Coordinated groups not only amplified trends but also mass-reported accounts of journalists and activists they deemed `unpatriotic'.
What was once created to be a success story in narrative ops, has now spiralled out of control.

Despite the crackdown, Khan's tech-savvy Insafians are not bowing down. Instead, they are innovating and expanding their audience. "What stands out is that since Khan's ouster, the scale of the PTI's digital influence has become even bigger," says [US United States Institute for Peace analyst] Asfandyar Mir.

"The PTI can blend high levels of organic online support and coordinated activity to amplify the narratives of its online coalition across platforms, which is both remarkable and -- given the divisive content -- pernicious," he adds.

"Until the falling out between Khan and Bajwa, PTI member and supporter accounts on social media would regularly tap into nationalist and populist sentiment by posting content praising the military," says Michael Kugelman, the deputy director of the Asia program at the Wilson Center.

archived Thu Mar 31st, 2022 in Key Role East-West Relations for NATO Member Turkey, Sun Oct 4th, 2020
by Cat on Sun Jun 5th, 2022 at 09:00:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
See my latest diaries ...

Joe Biden Promoting Human Rights In Middle East

Overthrow of Imran Khan and Biden's Blitzkrieg Arab States

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jun 5th, 2022 at 09:13:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Mon Jun 6th, 2022 at 11:25:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Defeat of US and NATO Forces in Afghanistan leaves a void for Western influence in Central Asia. Iran has enough on its plate, so the region's stability will be coordinated by Turkey, Pakistan, Russia and China.

Russia prevented unrest in Belarus and Kazachstan. The US has succeeded in meddling in Pakistan with the overthrow of Imran Khan.

Joe Biden is putting major pressure on India, Pakistan and Turkey. Developing the Abraham Accords of Israel and the UAE into a NATO of the Middle East. A lot of diplomacy to gain favor of the Gulf States by Turkey, Russia and America.

This post deserves a bit more attention.

Clearly the US is exploiting opposition groups, also designated as (Islamic) terrorists and in White House speak: freedom fighters.

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jun 5th, 2022 at 09:08:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
alias Summit of the Americas

AS/COA | Who's Coming to the Summit of the Americas?, 6 June

This [Summit RSVP] tracker was initially published on May 25, 2022, and has since been updated.[table]
Le Monde (EN) | Summit of the Americas highlights US disconnect with Latin America, 7 June paywall
The ninth Summit of the Americas will be officially opened by President Joe Biden in Los Angeles on Wednesday, June 8. The final list of participants in this gathering, which has been held every three or four years since 1994 and is supposed to bring together the heads of state of the whole continent, was the subject of controversy until the last minute. At issue was the refusal of the United States, the 2022 host country, to invite Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua, on the grounds that they do not respect democratic principles.

The decision raised an outcry in the region. ...

yahoo! Hill | Harris to announce nearly $2B in private investment to help stem migration, 7 June
The new commitments come from dozens of companies that will invest in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras to boost economic growth and expand opportunities for low-income and at-risk communities in those countries.

Among the new investments is $150 million from Gap Inc. to increase its sourcing in Central America to support more manufacturing [?] jobs. SanMar, an apparel company, will invest an additional $500 million in the region that will support 4,000 additional jobs. Telecommunications company Millicom will invest $700 million in the region to boost broadband networks. And Visa will spend $270 million to increase its digital infrastructure in the area.

The investments, to be announced Tuesday in Los Angeles ahead of the Summit of the Americas, bring the total commitments secured from the private sector to $3.2 billion since Harris was tasked last year with addressing root causes of migration from the Northern Triangle region. ....

archived Harris, Hispanic Caucus meet on Central America 2021

doctrinal reference
"The US decision is formally based on Article 19 of the Inter-American Democracy Charter, imposed in the Organization of American States in Lima, 2001, by former US Secretary of State Colin Powell."

by Cat on Tue Jun 7th, 2022 at 04:41:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
APsplainin Biden, Bolsonaro to hold first meeting amid election worries, 7 June conditional RSVP
• a private meeting (ghosting Trump-Zelensk* 2020)
• no criticism over deforestation
• no criticism of electoral system reliability
• no mention of Supreme Court of Brazil
A spokesperson for the U.S. State Department did not address questions about the requested preconditions. [...] Brazil's presidential palace did not respond to a request for comment about the tenor of the Burns meeting. The CIA declined to comment.
WNN | Brazil resumes uranium mining at Caetité, Dec 2020 locationm, location, location
A ceremony was held yesterday at the mine site, during which a detonation was carried out, symbolising the beginning of open pit mining in a new area, the Engenho mine.
He added: "Today, INB is resuming production of uranium in Caetité, generating with this jobs in the order of 600 direct and about 1800 indirect. With this, there will be an injection of financial resources in the local economy of approximately 76 million reals (USD14.6 million) per year and almost 30 million per year in the collection of state and municipal taxes."

Minister of Mines and Energy, Bento Albuquerque, who attended the ceremony, said: "This resumption is the first phase to consolidate our proposal to make Brazil self-sufficient and a yellowcake exporter."

DE | Uranium mining given greenlight in Brazil, 7 June
Uranium mining was long banned in the Brazilian state of Ceara. But shortly after the start of the war in Ukraine, Jair Bolsonaro allowed mining to start.
by Cat on Tue Jun 7th, 2022 at 05:51:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
El Pais | The US expects Spain to take in a 'significant number' of Central American refugees, 2 June
The Spanish foreign minister will attend the Summit of the Americas in LA and the pledge is expected to provide a political boost to the Biden administration.
The resettlement of Central American refugees in Spain was addressed at the first meeting that the Spain-US Working Group on Central America held in Madrid on May 25, with two delegations chaired by Spain's Secretary of State for Ibero-America and the Caribbean, Juan Fernández Trigo, and the US State Department's Deputy Assistant Secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs, Emily Mendrala.

According to a source at the Foreign Ministry, the delegations discussed "proposals and actions in order to address jointly and with the countries of the region the challenges posed by forced displacement and movements of irregular migrants from Central America."

Oswego News Now AP | White House plays up summit initiatives amid no-shows, 8 June
 "Los Angeles Declaration"
by Cat on Thu Jun 9th, 2022 at 04:32:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
France24 | Biden, western hemisphere leaders announce migration plan at Americas summit, 11 June
It is a blueprint already being followed to a large extent by Colombia and Ecuador, whose right-leaning leaders were saluted at the summit for giving temporary legal status to many of the 6 million people who have left Venezuela in recent years.
by Cat on Sun Jun 12th, 2022 at 12:56:16 AM EST
[ Parent ]
MercoPress | President says Argentina would like to join BRICS, 25 June
Argentine President Alberto Fernández Friday made a virtual appearance at this week's BRICS Summit, during which he asked that his country be admitted into the bloc alongside Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.

"We are enthusiastic about the prospect of coordinating policies that enhance the agenda of the countries of the global South," the Argentine leader said. "We aspire to be full members of this group of nations," added Fernández, who also called "for peace in Ukraine," while Russian President Vladimir Putin was watching from his own end of the closed-circuit streaming. "As Pope Francis has pointed out, neither wheat nor food can become a weapon of war, nor can the human person become a bargaining chip," he added.[
Fernández stressed it was necessary to "achieve a lasting peace that definitively leaves behind the dynamics unleashed by the escalation of war" and called on leaders to put "an end to violence, resuming dialogue and reestablishing the value of solidarity are ethical imperatives that this time imposes on us." Fernández, who holds this year the pro-tempore presidency of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), proposed his country as a bridge to find a solution.

archived CELAC Forum Wang+ AG, AR, BS, BB, BZ, BO, BR, CL, CO, CR, CU, DM, EC, SV, GD, GT, GY, HN, JM, MX, NI, PA, PY, PE
The Argentine leader asked to explore "cooperation mechanisms, such as the currency swap that Argentina signed with China" and thanked Xi for the invitation and all the countries of the bloc for the "demand to peacefully negotiate the Malvinas issue with the United Kingdom."

Fernández also pointed out that "the expansion of the New Development Bank -of BRICS- can be a useful instrument to strengthen national infrastructures." He also called to "promote the creation of an International Risk Rating Agency, which puts in public hands what today is in the hands of private interests."

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin's Regular Press Conference on June 24, 2022
CCTV: The 14th BRICS Summit was held yesterday. President Xi Jinping chaired the meeting via video link and delivered important remarks. Can you share more information?
Wang Wenbin: ...The leaders believed that with the world facing uncertainties, BRICS countries should strengthen solidarity and elevate BRICS cooperation to a new level so that BRICS can play a bigger role in international affairs. The five leaders reached multiple important common understandings on deepening BRICS cooperation, upholding multilateralism, promoting world economic recovery, jointly responding to COVID-19, opposing unilateral economic sanctions and "long-arm jurisdiction", strengthening people-to-people exchange and other issues of mutual interest. The five leaders agreed on the need to continue "BRICS Plus" cooperation and advance the BRICS membership expansion process. These common understandings and outcomes are noted in The XIV BRICS Summit Beijing Declaration adopted and released at the event. ...
ispionline | For China, the 14th BRICS Summit Is a Chance to Sponsor Its World View, 22 June
The attendees -- alongside BRICS members -- included emerging economies from Latin America, Asia, and Africa such as Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Egypt, Indonesia, Nigeria, Senegal, the United Arab Emirates, and Thailand. In the case of a BRICS enlargement, China would score an important diplomatic victory as it would entail there are developing countries that don't fear aligning with China and Russia within a non-Western framework.
XIV BRICS 2022 Meetings Calendar
by Cat on Sun Jun 26th, 2022 at 01:45:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Is this for real. The wrath of Joe Biden and next month's tour of the Middle East -- a direct flight (AF One) between Jerusalem (Sriheen Abu Akleh) and Riyadh (Jamal Khashoggi) pushing peace and human rights.

Making Russia and China pariah states. More trade barriers and sanctions.

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jun 26th, 2022 at 05:26:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
China, Russia welcome Iran's application to join BRICS, 28 June
Speaking on Monday, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh announced that Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian had forwarded a formal membership request to the group.

Back on Friday, Iran's President Ebrahim Raeisi addressed the BRICS Business Forum's virtual summit at China's invitation, saying the Islamic Republic could serve as a "sustainable partner" connecting the BRICS to energy chokepoints and major markets around the globe given its unique geopolitical and geo-economic position.

Anglphone press corpse runs one headline, "Iran applies to join China and Russia in BRICS club"
by Cat on Tue Jun 28th, 2022 at 04:37:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Multipolarista | Venezuela and Iran sign 20-year cooperation plan, Maduro pledges joint 'anti-imperialist struggle', 11 June
Iranian President Raisi said the document establishes formal "cooperation in the fields of energy, thermal power plants, repair and overhaul of refineries, exportation of technical and engineering services, economic, defense and military relations in the current government are indicatiative of the existence of many potentials and capacities in the two countries."
This agreement follows another historic 25-year cooperation plan that Iran signed with China in 2021, which has been estimated at $400 billion. Top Iranian diplomats signed similar deals with Nicaragua's Sandinista government in May.
Maduro announced that, as of July, there will be regular flights between Caracas and Tehran.

He added that a large oil tanker built by Iranian company Sadra was delivered to Venezuela. The vessel has a capacity of 800,000 barrels. Iran has helped Venezuela circumvent illegal US sanctions, breaking the blockade that Washington has imposed on the South American nation, which makes it difficult to export oil and import the lighter petroleum and diluents that Caracas needs to process its heavy crude.
Before his trip to Iran, Maduro also visited Algeria and Turkey. In his meeting with Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, Maduro said the leaders discussed "our firm solidarity with Palestine, support for the Saharawi people, and shared concern about the situation in brotherly Libya."

OPEC+ decides to speed up oil production hikes to offset sanctions on Russia, 12 June GRAPHIC WARNING
Crucially, Russia, isolated by the West over its invasion of Ukraine, approved the new policy, allowing OPEC to keep its main partner [RF] in the fold, while extending an olive branch to the US, which has pushed the alliance to pump more crude to tame soaring prices. In effect, however, most OPEC+ countries will be unable to fulfill the higher quotas, constrained by their own lack of upstream investment or internal instability. That would leave Saudi Arabia and the UAE able to capitalize as the two members holding any significant spare capacity.
archived Chevron and CELAC, China arms Algeria, consumer retail the gaps
by Cat on Sun Jun 12th, 2022 at 12:46:58 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Nicaragua authorizes entry of Russian troops, planes, ships, APsplainin
Ortega will allow Russian troops to carry out law enforcement duties, "humanitarian aid, rescue and search missions in emergencies or natural disasters."

The Nicaraguan government also authorized the presence of small contingents of Russian troops for "exchange of experiences and training."

Russia's foreign ministry spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, told the Russian news outlet Sputnik that the measure was "routine."

"We are talking about a routine -- twice a year -- procedure for the adoption of a Nicaraguan law on the temporary admission of foreign military personnel to its territory in order to develop cooperation in various areas, including humanitarian and emergency responses, combatting organized crime and drug trafficking," Zakharova said.

by Cat on Sun Jun 12th, 2022 at 01:58:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Mon Jun 13th, 2022 at 01:30:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
al Presidente interino de Venezuela

Our solidarity and support for the interim President of Venezuela
@jguaido, for the infamous attack by supporters of the dictatorship. We condemn the violence and persecution of which he has been a victim. We reiterate our call for the return of democracy in Venezuela.

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Mon Jun 13th, 2022 at 07:32:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
REUTERS | Leftist [Gustavo] Petro wins Colombia presidential election, 19 June
a former member of the M-19 guerrilla movement who has vowed profound social and economic change, will be Colombia's next president after beating construction magnate Rodolfo Hernandez in an election on Sunday.

Petro, a current senator and previous mayor of Bogota, won 50.8% of votes, figures from the national registry office showed, while Hernandez trailed by 797,973 votes, tallying 46.9%.

multipolarista | Colombia's first ever left-wing president: Gustavo Petro wins historic election. What does it mean?, 20 June report + podcasts inside
His presidential campaign brought together a broad coalition of left-wing parties, under the name the Pacto Histórico (Historic Pact), ranging from liberals to the Communist Party.

Petro will face many obstacles to governing. He does not have a majority in the bicameral Congress; both the Senate and Chamber of Representatives remain dominated by right-wing, centrist, and neoliberal parties.

Colombia's state security services, which are closely linked to paramilitary groups, and which killed thousands of civilians in the "falsos positivos" (false positives) scandal, are also openly antagonistic to Petro. The chief of Colombia's armed forces, General Eduardo Zapateiro, publicly attacked Petro on Twitter, violating national laws that stipulate that military officers cannot interfere in the electoral process....

by Cat on Mon Jun 20th, 2022 at 02:28:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Address of the President of Kazakhstan to the people of KazakhstanPrintable version, 16 Mar 2022

Central Referendum Commission of the Republic of Kazakhstan together with the Ministry of Information and Social Development of the Republic of Kazakhstan, 12 May

What was the question?
What amendments to the Constitution of Kazakhstan are being put to a referendum - full text

election.gov.kz/ | On the results of voting in the republican referendum June 5, 2022

Chairman of Kazakhstan's Central Commission recognizes constitutional referendum as valid, 6 June

The number of Kazakhstan's citizens who voted for approval of 56 amendments to the country's constitution, put to the referendum [held on June 5] made up 77.18 percent of those who took part in the voting in all regions of the country, Chairman of the Central Referendum Commission Nurlan Abdirov said at a briefing, Trend reports via Kazinform.

by Cat on Tue Jun 7th, 2022 at 07:20:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
TASS | Tokayev: Kazakhstan is unlikely to recognize the independence of the DNR and LNR, 17 June "territorial integrity"
This was stated by its President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev on Friday during a discussion at the plenary session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

"In general, it has been calculated that if the right of nations to self-determination is actually realized throughout the globe, then instead of the 193 states that are now members of the UN, more than 500 or 600 states will arise on Earth. Of course, it will be chaos. For this reason, we we do not recognize either Taiwan, or Kosovo, or South Ossetia, or Abkhazia."

archived permanent apportionment school of democracy
by Cat on Fri Jun 17th, 2022 at 10:18:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ORF | India's Proposed Data Protection Law and an India-US Executive Agreement Under the CLOUD Act, 3 June
The proposed law governs how personal data can be collected, used, and shared to safeguard individual privacy. It calls for, among others, the local storage of certain types of data. Through such localisation mandates, the Indian government seeks to address challenges faced by law enforcement agencies (LEAs) in accessing data, stored by US service providers, that could assist in criminal investigations.

Meanwhile, the United States (US) Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data Act [treaties] or CLOUD Act offers an alternative approach to the same challenge. Enacted in 2018, the CLOUD Act provides an avenue for foreign law enforcement agencies to access evidence directly from US service providers in case of investigation of "serious crimes", through an executive agreement drawn up by the two countries for the purpose. To enter such an agreement with the US, a foreign country must meet certain procedural and substantive requirements, including having protections against surveillance and safeguards against unbridled government access to data. It also requires the partner country to show a commitment to an open and interconnected Internet, and to free flows of data across borders. ...

euractiv | China rebrands proposal on internet governance, targeting developing countries, 6 June
Two weeks ago, the Chinese government circulated a modification of a resolution that in a footnote introduced the concept of IPv6+, presented as an enhanced version of the latest version of the internet protocol, known as IPv6. At around the same time, IPv6+ was promoted by Huawei.

archived 2021 "polarisation paradox", the CLOUD Act Passes 25 Mar

by Cat on Mon Jun 6th, 2022 at 11:59:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ICYMI China's top court calls for blockchain to record vast number of transactions, 31 May supply chain, ahem, mandate from heaven
Published last week, the opinion* [25 May 2022] reveals that the Court has already recorded 2.2 billion items on a judicial blockchain. The Court now suggests 32 more initiatives, most of which concern using blockchain to enhance efficiency of, and trust in, the nation's judiciary.
That suggests the Courts like the idea of most transactions being recorded on blockchain so that evidence can be easily obtained and verified, a situation that may not appeal to lawyers who often charge plenty of money for discovery of documents in the lead up to large cases.
pirate guideline UPDATE!
Two senators unveil their crypto regulation proposal, 7 June
Introduced by Sens. Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) and Kirstin Gillibrand (D-NY), the proposed bill - dubbed the Responsible Financial Innovation Act -- aims to create ["]clarity["] for regulators and the crypto industry to safeguard investors and consumers.
The legislation creates a common set of definitions for digital assets, virtual currency [!], payment stablecoins [!!], and smart contracts [!!!] that everyone can abide by. The bill also attempts to settle the score between the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) to define which agency has jurisdiction over what.

"[The bill] creates regulatory clarity for agencies charged with supervising digital asset markets, provides a strong, tailored regulatory framework for stablecoins, and integrates digital assets into our existing tax and banking laws," Sen. Lummis said.

Mommy. What is an asset?
The bill makes a clear distinction between digital assets that are securities and those that are commodities by looking at how the asset is used.
possession is 9/10 the law, Sugar Puff.
White House | Executive Order on Ensuring Responsible Development of Digital Assets, 9 Mar 2022
S&P Global Commodity Insights | Description change for Polyester China symbols, 7 June etc
< wipes tears >
Mommy. What is a transaction?

archived Always Read the Footnotes

by Cat on Tue Jun 7th, 2022 at 02:27:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Politico | 'The IMF is evil': Rich countries take aim at nations adopting crypto, 13 June. Not really. Rather, Rich countries seek for rich country tax revenue.
Officials from the U.S., IMF, World Bank and the Bank for International Settlements argue that by adopting cryptocurrencies, nations could facilitate money laundering and undermine capital controls, while exposing their citizens to severe price volatility.
Dong He, Deputy Director of the IMF's Monetary and Capital Markets Department, said the prospect of a sudden drop in the price of Bitcoin -- which has lost more than half its value since November -- made it unsuitable as a national currency.

"What would happen to the tax revenue? What would happen to your obligations to spend on social services?" said He, who declined to address the anti-crypto provisions in Argentina's letter to the fund.
[G7] Activists and [*coin] investors ... contend that the reservations of the world's monetary stewards have less to do with protecting the well-being of citizens of the developing world than with preserving a system in which the central banks and governments of rich countries dominate the global ["messaging"] system.

"Bitcoin stands against everything the IMF stands for," said Alex Gladstein [!], chief strategy officer of the ["]Human Rights["] Foundation, an NGO that supports Bitcoin adoption sales. "It's an ["]outside money["] that's beyond the control of these alphabet soup organizations."

Politico | Crypto markets reel as trading platforms suspend customer withdrawals, 13 June
currency swaps and capital gains losses
Celsius Network, a crypto lending margin loan business whose promise of eye-popping yields for retail consumers traders attracted a barrage of scrutiny from regulators, announced late Sunday night that it was halting withdrawals and crypto-for-crypto trading services for more than 2 million customers "due to extreme market conditions."
State and federal market regulators have targeted crypto lending strategies as a potential violation of securities law. BlockFi, a New Jersey-based platform brokerage, reached a $100 million settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission and 32 state agencies after it was accused of selling unlicensed investment products for about three years.
Always read the footnotes.
by Cat on Tue Jun 14th, 2022 at 01:31:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Tue Jun 21st, 2022 at 11:18:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A day late, and a shilling short.

(I'm old enough to remember when a shilling was worth something. They still exist in ex-british East Africa, but worth, not so much)

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Jun 21st, 2022 at 01:07:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Pakistan's polio eradication campaign is in disarray after an alarming jump in cases last week. Eight polio cases have now been reported in children over the past month in North Waziristan district, bordering Afghanistan. They are the first cases in more than a year


Anti-vaccination sentiment in Pakistan is deeply rooted. Clerics and others have spread myths that vaccines are a conspiracy by the west to sterilise Muslim children, and a husband was allowed to divorce his wife for vaccinating their children against polio.

How about the "myth" that the US uses the campaign for espionage? See Scientific American for details.
It is hard enough to distribute, for example, polio vaccines to children in desperately poor, politically unstable regions that are rife with 10-year-old rumors that the medicine is a Western plot to sterilize girls--false assertions that have long since been repudiated by the Nigerian religious leaders who first promoted them. Now along come numerous credible reports of a vaccination campaign that is part of a CIA plot--one the U.S. has not denied.
If polio spreads out of control, will Obama count as the most evil US President of them all?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Tue Jun 7th, 2022 at 07:45:58 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The century is still young.
by Cat on Tue Jun 7th, 2022 at 04:43:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
AUKUS: Canberra to compensate France over canceled sub deal
Australia announced plans Saturday to pay France's Naval Group compensation after it scrapped a multi-million-dollar submarine contract last September.

Australia said it would pay out €555 million ($584 million) after it quashed the multi-billion-dollar contract and opted to purchase US-made submarines instead.

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said France's Naval Group agreed to the sum and called it "fair and equitable."

"This agreement is important because it permits us to turn a page in our bilateral relations with Australia and look to the future," French Defense Minister, Sebastien Lecornu, said.

by Bernard (bernard) on Sat Jun 11th, 2022 at 10:19:03 AM EST
[ Parent ]
An invitation to join AUKUS?

Biden with the European wrecking ball. So sorry ...

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sat Jun 11th, 2022 at 10:57:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A territorial dispute between Denmark and Canada over a barren and uninhabited rock in the Arctic that has led to decades of friendly friction has come to an end, with the two countries agreeing on Tuesday to divide the tiny island between them.

Under the agreement, a border will be drawn across the half-square-mile Hans Island in the waterway between the northwestern coast of the semi-autonomous Danish territory of Greenland and Canada's Ellesmere Island. The rock has no known mineral reserves of value.

"It sends a clear signal that it is possible to resolve border disputes ... in a pragmatic and peaceful way, where the all parties become winners," said Danish Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod. He said it was "an important signal now that there is much war and unrest in the world."

So does this mean that Denmark is suggesting that the Ukrainian war could be finished by dividing it in half (between Poland and Russia)? What else could he mean?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Jun 15th, 2022 at 04:32:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Mental disorder is a communicable disease.
by Cat on Thu Jun 16th, 2022 at 01:13:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bernard (bernard) on Tue Jun 21st, 2022 at 08:18:57 PM EST
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Guerre en Ukraine : "La famine est notre principal espoir", la blague qui fait fureur à Moscou | lindependant.fr |  Un exemple du cynisme dont les Russes sont friands.

French diplomats gave it legs ...


French Foreign Ministry Anne-Claire Legendre said on Twitter.

All over Western propaganda ...


'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jun 21st, 2022 at 09:17:27 PM EST
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A representative of Ukraine told the Security Council that Putin's war threatens some 400 million people globally who rely on Ukrainian grain exports, which have almost stopped due to blockages of Ukrainian seaports. Russia is also seizing Ukrainian grain for its own consumption or to illegally sell it on international markets, he said.
< wipes tears >
Turkish ship leaves Ukraine's Mariupol after grain talks with Moscow, 22 June escort service
by Cat on Wed Jun 22nd, 2022 at 01:33:41 PM EST
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Propaganda Comes Around

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jun 26th, 2022 at 07:44:07 AM EST
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Occasional Series