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Posts Tagged ‘push’

France to push G20 monetary reforms: finance minister

In Uncategorized on November 17, 2010 at 3:26 am

Obama makes free trade push at Pacific Rim summit

In Uncategorized on November 13, 2010 at 8:54 am

UN aid push for Pakistan as US steps up relief

In Uncategorized on August 12, 2010 at 7:20 am

SUKKUR, Pakistan (AFP) – The UN has appealed for 460 million dollars in urgent aid to cope with Pakistan’s devastating floods as a US carrier joins the relief operation and medics warn of a wave of disease.

UN humanitarian chief John Holmes on Wednesday said the funds would be used for food, clean water, shelter and medical supplies for the millions affected by the natural disaster in a nation already beset by extremist violence.

Pakistani flood survivors evacuate a flooded area near Muzaffargarh. AFP

“We have a huge task in front of us to deliver all that is required as soon as possible,” he told donors in New York.

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates announced the deployment of an amphibious assault ship, taking the number of US helicopters available for the relief effort to 19.

“The flooding in Pakistan has the potential to be significantly more disastrous for the country than the earthquake several years ago,” he said, referring to a 2005 quake in Kashmir that killed more than 73,000 people.

US President Barack Obama “wants to lean forward in offering help to the Pakistanis”, Gates said, as Islamic charities step up a highly visible aid effort with the Islamabad government admitting to being overwhelmed.

The biggest challenge for doctors is injuries from collapsing buildings or other trauma, said one medic from Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders).

“The second is skin infections. We receive a lot of patients with scabies, fungal infections, mostly because of overcrowding (in relief camps),” said the doctor, who gave his name as Waheed.

And the bigger challenge now building is water-borne disease and nutritional problems, he said.

“There’s a need of proper water supply and proper food supply because they have a water supply over here but it’s not up to the international standards.”

Pakistan’s government says 14 million people face direct or indirect harm from the floods, while the United Nations has warned that children are among the most vulnerable.

The UN believes 1,600 people have died in the floods, while Pakistan has confirmed 1,243 deaths.

Millions of displaced and hungry Pakistanis who watched flood waters swallow up their homes and crops face further challenges when the dawn-to-dusk fasting month of Ramadan starts Thursday.

Authorities promise to provide cooked meals to flood victims during Ramadan and compensate families of those killed, but few on the ground expect much assistance.

Officials in Punjab province said more than 90 percent of the town of Kot Addu had emptied and that thousands of factories had shut because of electricity and gas cuts.

The chief minister of Sindh, Syed Qaim Ali Shah, said that up to 3.5 million people could be affected in the southern province.

“Up to 40 kilometres (25 miles) of Indus Highway is inundated and has been closed. The initial rough estimates show that losses of 35 billion rupees (411 million dollars), excluding crops, have been suffered by Sindh,” he said.

“What we need is substantial foreign aid and not peanuts. The aid being pledged so far is peanuts and not enough to meet the enormous challenge ahead.”

The World Food Programme said it was trying to get help to up to six million survivors at a cost of 150 million dollars.

Richard Holbrooke, US special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan said the enormous scale of the suffering in Pakistan was difficult to comprehend.

“Although the deaths are far less than they were in the (2004 Indian Ocean) tsunami, and in the 2005 Pakistan earthquake, and in Haiti, the overall number of people affected is much larger than all of those combined,” he said.

“The international recognition of this disaster has not yet been sufficient to its dimensions,” he told the Council on Foreign Relations, warning that Pakistan faced “rolling crises” for a long time to come.

Source: SGGP

Obama to launch Asian diplomacy push

In Uncategorized on June 24, 2010 at 4:36 am

 US President Barack Obama, twice forced to cancel a trip to Asia this year, will launch a major diplomatic push on the region by meeting five key leaders at this weekend’s G20 summit.

The White House said Obama would have meetings in Toronto with the leaders of India, China, South Korea, Japan and Indonesia, and five of his six bilateral encounters there will focus on Asia.

Aides said Obama wanted to make a statement about the importance with which he views US links with the dynamic region, ahead of a planned trip to India, South Korea and Japan in November.

“You’ll note that five out of the six bilaterals mentioned are with Asia-Pacific countries,” a senior administration official told reporters.

“That is, I think, an eloquent demonstration of the importance that the president attaches to Asia, the importance of Asia to our political security and economic interests.

“It’s an area of rising influence globally.”

A man holds a banner dipicting US President Barack Obama during a pro-Obama rally in Jakarta in March.

Obama, who will also attend a G8 summit in Canada, will discuss key global issues, including emerging from the worst economic crisis in decades, and security threats including North Korea with the Asian leaders, aides said.

He will hold the latest of his regular meetings with Chinese President Hu Jintao, which will take place days after Beijing moved towards a key US foreign policy goal, letting the yuan trade more freely against the dollar.

“We of course have been cooperating and coordinating closely with China on a number of leading priorities heading into this summit, both in terms of the global economy and in terms of security issues,” an official said.

The administration says its relationship with China is productive, despite disagreements on some key issues, and points to the recently passed UN Security Council sanctions on Iran as the fruit of good ties with Beijing.

Obama is also likely to discuss North Korea’s nuclear challenge with Hu, and the aftermath of the sinking of a South Korean naval vessel, which an investigation blamed on Pyongyang.

North Korea will also be the dominant issue when Obama meets South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak also on Saturday.

“The focus of this meeting will be security and alliance issues in the wake of the sinking of the (ship) as the result of a torpedo attack by North Korea,” an official said.

The meeting will be a public and a private demonstration of our strong solidarity with our South Korean ally in the wake of this episode.”

On Sunday, Obama will have breakfast in Toronto with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono of Indonesia.

The US leader was forced to cancel a planned visit to Indonesia, a country where he spent four years as a boy, earlier this month, as the Gulf of Mexico oil spill escalated into America’s worst environmental crisis.

Earlier in the year, a previous attempt to visit Indonesia was dropped as Obama successfully lobbied for his landmark health care reform bill.

“Regrettably, (Obama) has not been able to make it to Indonesia yet, but he very much wants to continue the close coordination that we have with Indonesia on a number of issues,” the official said.

Obama will also meet Sunday with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, as a precursor to his promised trip to India in November — when he is also due to attend the next G20 summit in South Korea and the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum (APEC) in Japan.

The president will also have his first encounter with new Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan, after he replaced Yukio Hatoyama, who lost his job amid a row over the location of a US base.

Obama and Kan will also likely discuss North Korea and Iran.

Source: SGGP

Deputies push for better forecasting work

In Uncategorized on May 29, 2010 at 5:14 am

Deputies push for better forecasting work

QĐND – Friday, May 28, 2010, 21:3 (GMT+7)

A number of National Assembly (NA) deputies emphasised the need to improve the quality of forecasting and statistics while discussing the socio-economic development plan and state budget in 2009 and the first few months of 2010.

Deputies Nguyen Van Tuyet and Ngo Van Minh, from Yen Bai and Quang Nam provinces respectively, shared this view with many other deputies at the NA session in Hanoi on May 27, citing large differences between the predicted and achieved figures for some major targets.

For example, the state revenues collected were almost VND 51.69 trillion higher than the estimated figure for just two months, equivalent to 3% of the country’s GDP or close to half of 2009’s overspend.

The deficit in last year’s balance of payments was US$8.8 billion, while the amount reported at the 6th NA meeting was just US$1.9 billion.

This influenced the NA’s decisions on how to deal with the over-spend and when mapping out plans for the following year, they said.

Vo Tuan Nhan, from Quang Ngai province and other deputies said that the government’s report seemed to focus on economic issues but failed to make accurate assessments on social and environmental matters.

Deputies Do Thi Huyen Tam from Bac Ninh and Ngo Van Minh from Quang Nam, pointed out that eight out of the 25 unmet targets were directly related to the social and environmental fields.

Worthy of note is that only 50% of the existing industrial and export-processing zones have certified waste treatment systems, 10% less than the figures for 2008.

The deputies asked the government to tackle this issue promptly as it will affect the country’s efforts to promote sustainable development and improve the public’s living conditions.

At the session, many deputies agreed that the poverty line that has been applied since 2006 is no longer suitable as the consumer price index (CPI) has kept growing, widening the gap between rich and poor.

They proposed that the government take drastic measures to control prices, adopt new poverty standards and combine poverty reduction programmes more efficiently to put an end to overlapping.

Source: VNA

Source: QDND

Australia’s Foster’s to push on with wine, beer demerger

In Uncategorized on May 26, 2010 at 1:23 pm

Clashes as Kyrgyz authorities push to regain south

In Uncategorized on May 14, 2010 at 8:53 am

Bloody clashes erupted in southern Kyrgyzstan Friday as the interim government moved to regain control of key regional infrastructure seized by supporters of ousted president Kurmanbek Bakiyev.

Shots rang out in the cities of Osh and Jalalabad, where hundreds of Bakiyev supporters battled factions loyal to the government with sticks and stones, medical officials and reports said.

At least 20 people were hospitalised in Jalalabad, some with gunshot wounds and others injured by stones or other objects, the regional hospital’s chief doctor Abdy Shamshiyev told reporters.

The government regained control of an administration building in Osh but the Bakiyev supporters still appeared to control the equivalent building in Jalalabad, the Aki-Press news website reported.

A file picture shows a Kyrgyz opposition supporter (R) facing supporters of outsed president Kurmanbek Bakiyev in Osh during clashes last month.

The governor of the Osh region had reentered the building with hundreds of supporters, the reports added. The interim government meanwhile insisted it had the entire south under control.

Protesters loyal to Bakiyev — including large numbers of women — on Thursday peacefully seized regional administration buildings in Osh, Jalalabad and the town of Batken. They also occupied the airports in Osh and Jalalabad.

The interim government, which took power after Bakiyev was ousted in an uprising last month, has so far avoided using security forces against protesters in a bid not to inflame tensions.

Omurbek Tekebayev, a leading member of the interim government, accused Bakiyev of being behind the unrest and said its organisers “wanted to ignite an inter-ethnic conflict in the country.

“But they have not received the support of society,” he added.

Another top interim government official, Azimbek Beknazarov, said there was information that Bakiyev supporters were planning mass protests against the authorities on May 17.

“Popular militia groups are forming throughout the country with the aim of thwarting a destabilisation of the country,” he added.

He also claimed that the “south of the country is completely under the control of the authorities.

“Popular militia groups are patrolling the south and the government has given the order to arrest the organisers of the riots.”

Bakiyev was ousted last month in protests that left at least 86 people dead and brought to power the interim government which has struggled to impose its authority on the country.

The latest events have raised fresh fears about the stability and unity of the Central Asian country after the toppling of Bakiyev, who drew the bulk of his support from the south of Kyrgyzstan.

The ousted leader has since taken refuge in Belarus, which has so far not responded to calls from the interim government for his extradition.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev warned last month Kyrgyzstan risked civil war but the situation calmed with the departure of Bakiyev.

Bakiyev’s support committee in Kyrgyzstan said the day earlier that 25,000 supporters of the ousted president were making their way to Bishkek to “settle scores with the interim government”.

There was no immediate sign of this in the capital but his Bishkek-based support committee said that a demonstration of 10,000 people were expected later in the day.

Bakiyev himself came to power in a popular uprising — the so-called Tulip Revolution of 2005 which ousted the previous president Askar Akayev — but became increasingly unpopular amid allegations of corruption and mismanagement.

Source: SGGP

Hoa Binh urged to push back drug trafficking

In Uncategorized on May 9, 2010 at 4:48 pm

Hoa Binh urged to push back drug trafficking

QĐND – Sunday, May 09, 2010, 22:2 (GMT+7)

The northern province of Hoa Binh must create fundamental changes to drive back the illegal drug trafficking and transport and stamp out drug smuggling rings. 

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung made the request while working with the provincial leaders on May 8. 

PM Dung urged ministries and authorised agencies to closely coordinate with the province to timely detect and prevent the transport and smuggling of drugs in the two communes. 

He requested the province to mobilise people’s participation in drug prevention through raising their awareness of the harmful effects of drugs and the illegality of drug trafficking. 

The PM also pledged government assistance for the province build to better its socio-economic development plan and seek appropriate plants and animals for local ethnic people. 

The province should also pay more attention to policies on social security, poverty reduction and forest protection while accelerating administrative reform to attain a GDP growth rate of 11.5 percent and per-capita income of VND13.3 million per year and reduce the poverty rate to 14 percent in 2010. 

The same day, PM Dung attended the inauguration of Hoa Binh provincial General Hospital.

Source: VOV

Source: QDND

UK leaders in frantic last minute polls push

In Uncategorized on May 5, 2010 at 12:41 pm

LONDON (AFP) – Britain’s main party leaders launched a final day of campaigning Wednesday with one poll suggesting that almost four in 10 voters in the cliffhanger general election had yet to decide who to back.

And with a succession of opinion polls giving the opposition Conservatives only a narrow lead going into Thursday’s voting, the scene was set for a dramatic finish to what has been the closest election battle for a generation.

A customer looks at information screens displaying the odds on the result of this week’s general election in a bookmakers in central London. AFP photo

The party leaders were to crisscross the country on a frantic last day of campaigning.

David Cameron, whose Conservative party are ahead in opinion polls, embarked on a 24-hour battlebus tour in a bid to fulfil a commitment to visit every part of Britain.

Cameron’s all-night campaigning push ahead of the vote takes him through northern and central England, into Wales, before finishing in the city of Bristol, southwest England.

“We are going at it all night, all day, all next day, all the way through to polling day,” he said at a rally in Renfrewshire, Scotland, Tuesday.

“That is how we are going to win the election.”

The Conservatives are fighting to oust the ruling Labour Party after 13 years in power.

But the strong poll lead they enjoyed several months ago has now been whittled down to a few points.

Most surveys indicate they would not win enough seats in the House of Commons to be able to form a government on their own, leading to a hung parliament.

The latest ComRes poll for ITV News and The Independent newspaper showed no change on the previous day, with the Tories on 37 percent, Labour on 29 and the Liberal Democrats 26.

But it also indicated that nearly four in 10 voters had not yet made up their mind who to back, suggesting all was still to play for.

Gordon Brown, fighting to secure a historic fourth term in office for Labour, was to travel through northern England and Scotland Wednesday.

At a campaign rally late Tuesday in Manchester, northwest England, Brown appealed to voters to “come home” to the party.

“When the last 48 hours of this campaign has passed, in that one minute in the polling booth vote for the kind of country you believe in, and come home to Labour,” he said.

But there were mixed messages from Labour over the issue of tactical voting.

Cabinet ministers Ed Balls and Peter Hain signalled Labour supporters should cast their ballots for Nick Clegg’s centrist Liberal Democrats in seats where it was a tight race between the Lib Dems and the Tories.

Tactical voting in the swing constituencies, which essentially decide the results of British elections, could keep the Conservatives out of power, they suggested.

“Of course I want the Labour candidate to win but I understand people’s concerns about letting the Conservatives in,” said Balls, who is education minister.

He also urged Lib Dem supporters to “bite their lip” and vote for Labour in seats where it was a tight race between the governing party and the Conservatives, in comments to the New Statesman magazine.

But Labour campaign coordinator, Douglas Alexander, appeared to disagree with his colleague, warning: “If you vote for the Liberal Democrats you could wake up on Friday morning and see a Conservative-led government, including Liberal Democrats.”

Clegg dismissed talk of tactical voting as “another sign of Labour’s desperation.”

His party has enjoyed a surge of support in the election campaign on the back of his performance in TV debates, and he is anxious to avoid tactical voting, fearing it could dent his party’s share of the popular vote.

This would damage his negotiating power in the event of a hung parliament, with commentators suggesting he could hold the balance of power.

On the campaign trail in Glasgow, Scotland, Clegg urged voters to back his party to usher in a “new kind of politics” — one of his party’s main policies is reform of the voting system towards proportional representation.

“Support us. Support us in our campaign in these vital last crucial hours of the election campaign and deliver the fairness, the difference, the real change that I think Glasgow and Britain deserve.”

Source: SGGP

UN chief calls for new climate pact push

In World on December 23, 2009 at 11:33 am

UN chief Ban Ki-moon appealed for world powers to make a new effort to secure a legally binding climate deal next year amid new diplomatic wrangling over the failure of the Copenhagen summit.

China hit back at Britain over claims that Beijing had “hijacked” the Copenhagen negotiations while Brazil and Cuba lashed out at the US President Barack Obama.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has appealed for world powers to make a new effort to secure a legally binding climate deal next year amid new diplomatic wrangling over the failure of the Copenhagen summit.

With scientists warning of the growing threat of drought, floods, storms and rising sea levels, Ban acknowledged international disappointment over the summit accord on restraining rising temperatures.

“I am aware that the outcome of the Copenhagen conference, including the Copenhagen Accord, did not go as far as many would have hoped,” Ban told reporters in New York.

“Nonetheless they represent a beginning, an essential beginning,” the secretary general added.

Ban said “the leaders were united in purpose, but they were not united in action,” and pressed them “to directly engage in achieving a global legally binding climate change treaty in 2010.”

The UN boss said he would set up a high-level panel on development and climate change in 2010 ahead of attempts for a new deal at a summit in Mexico City in December next year.

The leaders of the United States, China, India, Brazil, South Africa and major European nations assembled the last-minute Copenhagen accord, as it became clear the 194-nation summit was heading for failure.

They promised 100 billion dollars for poor nations that risk bearing the brunt of the global warming fallout and set a commitment to limit global warming to two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit).

The outcome has been widely criticised, with recriminations among many of the participants.

China on Tuesday accused Britain of “fomenting discord” among developing countries after Britain’s climate change minister Ed Miliband said China had blocked a deal in Copenhagen.

Miliband wrote in a newspaper article that China vetoed attempts to give legal force to the accord reached at the summit and that it had blocked an agreement on reductions in global emissions.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said “such an attack was made in order to shirk the obligations of developed countries to their developing counterparts and foment discord among developing countries.”

She told the state Xinhua news agency “the attempt was doomed to fail.”

Brazil’s President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva blamed the United States for the talks’ failure, saying Obama was not prepared to make sufficient emissions cuts.

“The United States is proposing a reduction of four percent from the date fixed by the Kyoto Protocol (1990). That is too little,” Lula said on his weekly radio programme.

This led other countries to avoid their “commitments to the objectives (of reducing carbon dioxide emissions) and financial commitments,” Lula added.

Brazil pledged voluntary carbon emission cuts of 36-39 percent based on projected 2020 output and urged rich countries to help poorer countries.

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez accused Obama of being “arrogant” at the summit, while Britain had been the “executioner” for the United States.

“During the summit, there was just an imperial, arrogant Obama who doesn’t listen, who imposes and threatens developing countries,” the minister told a press conference.

Rodriguez added that “the British delegation played the role of the executioner” using attempts at “shameful blackmail” against developing countries.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown on Monday accused a handful of unnamed countries of taking the summit hostage.

India weighed into the dispute with its government hailing the lack of targets and legally binding measures and vaunting the united front presented with China, Brazil and South Africa.

Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh told parliament India had “come out quite well in Copenhagen”.

He listed a series of accomplishments, including the thwarting of moves to impose binding targets for global reductions in carbon emissions — something India has always rejected.

“We can be satisfied that we were able to get our way on this issue,” Ramesh told lawmakers.

Bangladesh, one of the nations most vulnerable to global warming, said meanwhile that it will seek 15 percent of the first 30 billion dollars committed at the Copenhagen summit.


Source: SGGP Bookmark & Share