Wiki Actu en

December 21, 2008

Deposed Mauritanian president Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdallahi is released

Deposed Mauritanian president Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdallahi is released

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to: navigation, search

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdallahi.

Mauritania
Other stories from Mauritania
  • 18 June 2011: UN passes LGBT rights resolution
  • 30 April 2010: Algerian driver released by hostage takers in Niger
  • 13 March 2010: Kidnapped Spanish aid worker is released
  • 7 March 2010: Polio vaccination campaign targets 85 million African children
  • 6 March 2009: Mauritania cuts ties with Israel, expels Israeli diplomats
…More articles here
Location of Mauritania

A map showing the location of Mauritania

To write, edit, start or view other articles on Mauritania, see the Mauritania Portal
Flag of Mauritania.svg

Mauritania’s President Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdallahi has been freed “without conditions” from house arrest by the military junta on Sunday.

Sidi Mohamed Ould Cheikh Abdallahi (Arabic: سيدي محمد ولد الشيخ عبد الله) is a Mauritanian politician who served in the government during the 1970s, and after a long period of absence from politics he won the March 2007 presidential election, taking office on 19 April 2007. He was deposed in a military coup d’etat on August 6, 2008.

He was removed from Lemden to his soldiers guarded private residence in Nouakchott (Arabic: نواكشوط or انواكشوط), the Capital and by far the largest city of Mauritania. It is one of the largest cities in the Sahara. The city is the administrative and economic centre of Mauritania.

Sidi’s release is a result of protracted and intense international pressure on the ruling military High Council of State headed by General Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, to restore constitutional rule to the nation. France and the US had canceled their aid, while the African Union has also suspended the country due to the 6 August coup d’état. But the leaders still refused to reinstate Sidi, amid the demands of the EU, the United States and other major donors.

Aerial view of Nouakchott.

Reuters has reported that “the EU says it will avoid sanctions that would hurt Mauritania’s 3 million people, and continues to pay Nouakchott over $100 million a year for fishing rights, underpinning the state budget.” Further, the United States on Friday announced it would cut trade benefits for Mauritania as of January 1.

It is expected that Sidi will be allowed to participate in a “national consultation meeting” on December 27. But in an interview by the French newspaper Le Monde, he said that “participating in the December 27 talks would be to legitimise the coup d’état”.



Related news

  • “Mauritania president Abdallahi arrested in coup” — Wikinews, August 6, 2008

Sources

Wikipedia Learn more about Mauritania on Wikipedia.
Bookmark-new.svg


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

April 17, 2007

France knew of and told CIA about al-Qaeda hijack plans prior to 9/11

France knew of and told CIA about al-Qaeda hijack plans prior to 9/11

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to: navigation, search

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Al-Qaeda
Other Al-Qaeda stories
  • 21 March 2015: Suicide bombers attack mosques in Sanaa, Yemen
  • 7 January 2015: Twelve dead in shooting at offices of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo
  • 10 December 2014: Senate publish report on CIA torture and misinformation
  • 15 June 2014: Abbott open to possible Australian assistance in Iraq
  • 2 June 2013: Second man charged in Lee Rigby murder case
  • 19 May 2013: White House releases Benghazi emails
Attacks attributed to Al-Qaeda
RecentAlQaedaAttacks.svg
External and Inter-wiki links
  • Wikipedia article about Al-Qaeda

Reports produced by the French secret services reveal that they knew that al-Qaeda was planning attacks on the United States at least eight months before the 9/11 attacks and that the attack was going to involve U.S. jetliners, the French newspaper Le Monde reports.

Le Monde also says one of the reports was handed to Bill Murray, a CIA agent working at the Paris station at the time, but no record of that handover has been released in the U.S. governments 9/11 commission report in 2004.

“[The French government knew of a] plan to hijack an aircraft by Islamic radicals,” said the report, adding the planned attack had been discussed by al-Qaeda, Taliban and Uzbek militants in 2000. However; the Washington Post and The Daily times mistakenly say that the Uzbeck militants were Chechen.

According to the reports, al-Qaeda was planning to launch the 9/11 attack in March or September in 2000, but that the attack was delayed because of “differences of opinion, particularly over the date, objective and participants.”

“You have to remember that a plane hijack (in January 2001) did not have the same significance as it did after September 11. At the time, it implied forcing a plane to land at an airport and undertaking negotiations,” said Pierre-Antoine Lorenzi.

The CIA said that the report does not show that the U.S. or France had advance knowledge that an attack was going to take place.

“Today’s Le Monde article merely repeats what the U.S. government knew and reported before September 11 that al Qaeda was interested in airliner plots, especially hijackings. The article does not suggest that U.S. or foreign officials had advance knowledge of the details surrounding the September 11 plot. Had the details been known, the U.S. government would have acted on them,” a spokesman for the CIA, George Little, said.

Sources

Bookmark-new.svg


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

December 14, 2006

Fictional documentary about Flemish independence causes consternation in Belgium

Fictional documentary about Flemish independence causes consternation in Belgium

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to: navigation, search

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Screenshot from the fictive news report, showing the RTBF anchorman asking clarification from a reporter standing in front of the Royal Palace in Brussels.

Belgium is a federal state consisting of a three regions: Flanders is the Dutch-speaking northern part (yellow), Brussels-Capital Region is the central part where both Dutch and French are spoken, and Wallonia is the southern French-speaking part. There is also a small German-speaking community in Wallonia (blue striped).

The Belgian French-speaking public television channel RTBF interrupted its programming last night for a special news bulletin reporting that the Flemish Parliament had suddenly created an independent Flemish state separate from Belgium. However, during the broadcast it became clear that the report was actually a documentary meant to stir up the debate on the position of the states and regions in the federal country Belgium. Walloon Minister of Media Fadila Laanan said that the message “this is fiction” appeared only at her request, after she had received several “panic” calls and text messages.

During the report, King Albert II of Belgium was alleged to have left the country to show his disagreement with the unilateral Flemish decision. Several politicians (Jean-Marie Dedecker, Jean-Marie Happart, Herman De Croo etc.) contributed in the making of the program, giving their reaction to the news and explaining some of their views on Flemish independence. There were images of thousands celebrating in Antwerp and flag-waving independence supporters in front of the Royal Palace in Laken, but also trams stuck at the “new border”, and traffic jams in the direction of Brussels Airport. After a while more comedy entered the report; two Flemish policemen where shown to be called into action to patrol the border, and Guy Vanhengel (VLD) was interviewed inside the Atomium, the monument symbolic of Belgium, where he spoke of a “monumental” mistake. The report was followed by a debate on the subject of the Flemish independence movement.

The head of news at RTBF reacted: “We obviously scared many people – maybe more than we expected,” and this was indeed the case. A spokesman of Belgian Prime Minister Verhofstadt stated late last night that the newspaper Le Monde had already called them, and that CNBC already thought it was not fictional. Several embassies reported the news to their countries, and a Belgian representative in the European Parliament reported “consternation”. A survey by the RTBF shows that 89% of spectators admit being fooled by the report, with even 6% continuing to believe it after the fiction notice appeared.

Leaders on both sides of the country spelled out their appall: Elio Di Rupo said it is “…unacceptable to play with the institutions and the stability of the country.”, while Yves Leterme, Minister-President of the Flemish government, regretted that some of the Flemish demands were caricatured. Pro-independence politicians such as Filip Dewinter and Bart De Wever didn’t hide their approval of the fake news report. Several politicians have criticized the method used by the RTBF, and expect that this will reflect badly on the credibility and reputation of the channel. The usual RTBF news studio and anchorman were used to make the fictional report.

The incident is headline news in Belgium. The report comes at a time of a growing discussion on the topic of granting Flanders more independence from Belgium, one year before the elections in Belgium. Only last week, the pro-Flemish political parties CD&V and NVA announced that they would demand a major constitutional change during the next federal negotiations.

Sources

External links

Bookmark-new.svg


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

April 30, 2005

Violent rioting, deaths follow disputed election in Togo

Violent rioting, deaths follow disputed election in Togo

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to: navigation, search

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Togo
Other stories from Togo
…More articles here
Location of Togo

A map showing the location of Togo

To write, edit, start or view other articles on Togo, see the Togo Portal
Flag of Togo.svg

Immediately after the provisional election returns in the West African nation of Togo were given last Tuesday, violence and chaos erupted with security forces beating and shooting protesters, who object to the fairness of the Togolese elections and allege widespread fraud. Some of the opposition leaders who were targeted are said to have been unarmed or even found by security forces in their homes, and police have fought in fiery pitched battles against rioters for days, employing tear gas behind burning barricades. At least 40 Togolese citizens have been killed.

The elections were won by Faure Gnassingbé, son of the previous leader Gnassingbé Eyadéma, who held power in Togo for about 38 years before his death on February 5, 2005. The army appointed his son as his successor and the country’s leader, but regional opposition forced him to step down and seek free elections.

The preliminary count indicates that 60% of the vote went to Faure Gnassingbé, a 38-year-old Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Yale University and son of the former President. An additional 38% went to his chief opponent, 74-year-old Emmanual Bob-Akitani, who was endorsed by a six-party coalition and opposition leader Harry Olympio. Further violence is expected as the official vote tally and announcement of results comes within a few days.

“Just after the [preliminary] results were announced the red berets [commandos] went out into the streets and started shooting at the boys,” said Marthe, who fled to a U.N. refugee camp in Benin to escape the fighting. “They only shot at the boys. They ransacked shops and blamed the youths, who were unarmed,” she continued in her Reuters interview. More than 11,500 Togolese have fled from their country and taken up temporary residence in Benin and Ghana since the elections, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

The opposition party claims that 100 people have been killed in the ongoing violence that passed through Lome and other villages. Togo’s Human Rights League has verified the deaths of at least 40, and the wounding of many others.

“Violence is not the way to deal with democracy,” said Mohammed Ibn Chambas, executive secretary of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). “We think the way forward is for Togolese to use dialogue, and to sit down and negotiate.” ECOWAS has certified the elections as free from interference, a decision that some countries such as France have accepted, but the United States continues to question the fairness of the outcome.

Germany protested after its cultural center, the Goethe Institute, was burned down in Lomé. The Togolese government has accused Germany of aiding the opposition, and former interior minister Francois Boko (who was fired earlier for trying to postpone the election due to fears of violence) has sought refuge in the German embassy. Togo is a former German colony, but the official language of the country is French, since it was passed to Britain and France in 1918 and only gained its independence in 1960.

Gnassingbé has offered to form a new unity government, incorporating voices from the opposition, but their leaders turned down the offer, claiming that the election was fraudulent and stolen.

“If they refuse tomorrow, I hope that they will decide to join us the next day,” said Gnassingbé to France’s Le Monde in their Friday edition. “Reconciliation is a long process. You can’t jump overnight from a regime that lasted for 38 years to a new one,” he continued.

Related news

Sources

Bookmark-new.svg


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

March 22, 2005

EU looks set to continue arms embargo on China

EU looks set to continue arms embargo on China

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to: navigation, search

Tuesday, March 22, 2005 The EU is likely to delay the end of its arms embargo on China until next year, European diplomats said. The delay is a response to legislation passed in China earlier this month, authorising the use of military force against Taiwan if it attempts to officially secede from the mainland.

The EU came under intense pressure from the United States to not lift the embargo imposed after the Tiananmen Square massacre in 1989, when the Chinese government suppressed pro-democracy demonstrators. The US Congress threatened that it would retaliate against the EU if it lifted the arms embargo, by blocking the approval of technology transfer licenses.

The EU has made clear the delay is only temporary, and their commitment from last December to lift the embargo still stood.

European Commission spokeswoman Emma Udwin added, “The timescale is completely open, no deadline. [The] Luxembourg presidency said in January that they wanted to lift the embargo within their presidency, but there is no obligation to do that.”

China responded to the continued arms embargo and defended the Taiwan anti-secession law.

China defended its anti-secession law and responded to the ban by saying, “The EU ban on arms sales to China is political discrimination against China and out of keeping with the times,” Liu Jianchao, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman told a news conference.

“We hope the EU will make the political decision to lift the ban as soon as possible,” Liu continued. “It’s unreasonable to link China pushing the EU to lift the arms embargo and China passing the anti-secession law,” he said.

On Sunday, British foreign secretary Jack Straw in a British television interview commented that lifting the arms embargo was “more difficult rather than less difficult,” and that China’s anti-secession law towards Taiwan created “a difficult political environment.”

However, diplomats have told Le Monde that the UK was lobbying for a push-back of the decision to 2006, particularly among various EU countries more focuses on human rights issues.

The UK continues to support ending the embargo in principle, and Prime Minister Blair has envisioned a successful decision by the summer. While Britain is sensitive to American pressure, it nonetheless wants to assure a positive road leading up to its assuming of EU presidency duties on July 1.

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice characterized Mr. Straw’s remarks as “sobering comments” during her stay in Beijing on Monday.

“After all, it is American forces here in the Pacific that have played the role of security guarantor,” she said.

Related news

  • “China enacts historic “anti-secession” law” — Wikinews, March 15, 2005

Sources


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

Powered by WordPress