Monthly Archives: March 2014

Professor sacked for criticising Russian foreign policy

Prof Andrei Zubov:  "We must not behave the way Germans once behaved, based on the promises of Goebbels and Hitler."

A Russian philosophy professor at a prestigious state university has been sacked after comparing Moscow’s actions in Ukraine with Nazi Germany’s annexation of Austria in 1938. In an op-ed earlier this month on the day Russian lawmakers voted to give President Vladimir Putin permission to send troops into Ukraine, Andrei Zubov warned against war, saying: “We must not behave the way Germans once behaved, based on the promises of Goebbels and Hitler.” The Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), a diplomatic school with ties to the foreign ministry where Zubov has worked since 2001, said it had dismissed him for criticising Russia’s foreign policy. “Let the inappropriate and offensive … Continue reading

Posted in Crimea, Russia, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Putin scoffs at West’s boycott of G8 summit in Sochi

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his American counterpart Barack Obama square up.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has scoffed at the United States of America following a decision made by President Barack Obama and his Western allies to boycott a planned Group of Eight (G8) summit in Sochi in June and instead hold a G7 summit without Russia. In a statement issued from The Hague Wednesday, Mr Obama and his allies are in agreement to hold off on more economic sanctions on Russia if it went beyond the seizure of Crimea. s spokesperson Dmitry Peskov, confirmed that his country continues and is ready to maintain such contacts of the G8 partners at all levels, including the top most level. In retaliation, Obama described … Continue reading

Posted in G8 | Leave a comment

Kumaratunga protests against overzealous Secret Service

Former Sri Lanka President Chandrika Kumaratunga says she is finding it difficult to even visit her friends because it was tantamount to being visited by officers introducing themselves as the National Intelligence Bureau (NIB)

By Staff Writer Former Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga has protested the constant surveillance illegally placed on her by the country’s secret service. The protest was made in a letter she wrote early this month to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa. In the letter, a copy of which was handed to The London Evening Post, Kumaratunga complained of harassment and violation of her privacy and infringement of her fundamental rights of freedom of movement and association. She said since she retired from the Presidency in 2005, the government secret services directly under the authority of President Rajapaksa and  his brother Gotabaya Rajapaksa the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, have … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Commonwealth Observer Group arrives in the Maldives

Former Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding who will chair the Commonwealth Observer Group for this weekend

By Jessica A Badebye Commonwealth Secretary General Kamalesh Sharma has constituted an Observer Group for the People’s Majlis (Parliamentary) Elections, due 22 March 2014.  This disclosure was made by the former Prime Minister of Jamaica Bruce Golding who will chair the Commonwealth Observer Group. He was speaking soon after his group touched base in the Maldives capital Male. According a press statement issued by the Commonwealth Secretariat, Golding said that it is an honour and a privilege to lead this group, and oversee the people of Maldives exercise their fundamental right to express their will through the ballot box. Golding assured Maldivians that his group will be objective, impartial and … Continue reading

Posted in Maldives | Leave a comment

Hope fading for disappeared Malaysian passenger plane

Some of the family members of those on-board the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 wait in vain for their loved ones.

An international land and sea search for a missing Malaysian jetliner is covering an area the size of Australia, authorities said on Tuesday, but police and intelligence agencies have yet to establish a clear motive to explain its disappearance. Investigators are convinced that someone with deep knowledge of the Boeing 777-200ER and commercial navigation diverted Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, carrying 12 crew and 227 mainly Chinese passengers, perhaps thousands of miles off its scheduled course from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. But intensive background checks of everyone aboard have so far failed to find anyone with a known political or criminal motive to hijack or deliberately crash the plane, Western security … Continue reading

Posted in Malaysia | Leave a comment

Swaziland and Sri Lanka to be probed over human rights

Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa - His country is accused of gross violation of human rights.

By Staff Writer Swaziland’s World Alliance for Citizen Participation (CIVICUS) and Sri Lanka’s Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA) have made submissions to the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) to put both countries under scrutiny and continually review their performance in the protection of human rights. The two organisations made their submissions on 10th March 2014 ahead of the Commonwealth Human Right Initiative (CHRI) meeting due at the end of this week. According to a communication received by our editorial team, both CIVICUS and the CPA illustrated the current state of affairs in their respective countries. CIVICUS acknowledged that while Swaziland’s National Constitution (2005) contains provisions on the rights to freedom … Continue reading

Posted in Sri Lanka, Swaziland | Leave a comment

Remove troops from Crimea or else – Obama warns Putin

Ukraine PM Arseniy Yatsenyuk meets President Barack Obama at the White House Wednesday.

US President Barack Obama has welcomed Ukraine’s interim prime minister to the White House and pledged to “stand with Ukraine” in its dispute with Russia. He warned Russian President Vladimir Putin the international community “will be forced to apply costs” if Russia does not remove its troops from Crimea. Ukraine PM Arseniy Yatsenyuk, speaking after meeting Mr Obama, said Ukraine “will never surrender” to Russia. It is absolutely unacceptable to have Russian boots on the Ukrainian ground in the 21st century, violating all international deals and treaties,” he said. The diplomatic appeals to Moscow come ahead of Sunday’s referendum in Crimea, in which citizens will be asked if they want … Continue reading

Posted in Crimea, Russia, Ukraine, USA | Leave a comment

Crimea sets date for holding referendum to rejoin Russia

Col. Yuliy Mamchuk, center, commander of the Ukrainian military garrison at the Belbek airbase, and a colleague with the regimental flag confront troops under Russian command Tuesday. (Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

The Crimean parliament sharply escalated the stakes Thursday in a standoff over the region’s future, voting to join the Russian Federation, calling a referendum in 10 days to validate its decision and vowing to nationalize Ukrainian state industries. In Washington, President Obama condemned the moves Thursday, saying the referendum “would violate the Ukrainian constitution and violate international law. He also called for international monitors to be allowed into all of Ukraine, including Crimea, to ensure that people’s rights are being respected, including the rights of ethnic Russians. Speaking from the White House on Thursday, President Obama called “unconstitutional” a planned referendum in the Crimea over whether people there want to … Continue reading

Posted in Crimea, Russia, Ukraine | Leave a comment