EU leaders approve plan to take in 120,000 refugees from Syria. However, this isn’t enough as the OECD predicts about one million refugees from Syria, Africa and Asia fleeing from war and persecution.
In a majority vote, EU leaders have agreed European countries would share portions of the refugee numbers.
According to EU Commissioner for Migration Dimitris Avramopoulos, it was about time EU showed what it meant with responsibility and solidarity.
The decision comes at a crucial time where the refugee crisis revealed deep cracks in the European bloc with plenty of countries disagreeing with each other, particularly with refugee quotas and safeguarding borders.
The 120,000 refugee numbers are dwarfed by Germany’s own efforts to safeguard about 800,000 refugees. German Chancellor Angela Merkel made it a point to exclude those seeking asylum for their country’s poor economic performance.
The OECD predicts about one million refugees. However, estimates show about 350,000 to 450,000 guaranteed to reach Europe in the coming months.
The spur of refugee efforts come after the photo of a dead Syrian toddler washed up on the beaches of a Turkish resort became viral and struck the ire of plenty of individuals in the Internet.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said dealing with Syrian refugees is Germany’s problem. He also said he is protecting the Christian culture against Muslims.
Orban, a hardline prime minister of Hungary, attacked the EU asylum quotas being an invitation. He said the migrants don’t want to stay in Hungary and wish to head for Germany, making the problem a German one.
Orban made the statement after hundreds of refugees and migrants stormed trains heading to Western Europe through hungary. The Budapest Keleti line was packed with migrants, many of which fought amongst themselves to board the train.
“Everything which is now taking place before our eyes threatens to have explosive consequences for the whole of Europe,” Orban wrote in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. “Europe’s response is madness. We must acknowledge that the European Union’s misguided immigration policy is responsible for this situation.”
“Those arriving have been raised in another religion, and represent a radically different culture. Most of them are not Christians, but Muslims,” he said. “This is an important question, because Europe and European identity is rooted in Christianity. Is it not worrying in itself that European Christianity is now barely able to keep Europe Christian? There is no alternative, and we have no option but to defend our borders.”
Many around the world may well be appalled by Orban’s views, and other European nations are not appearing to share his obvious distrust of the ethnic ‘other’. The UK is among many others who have recently agreed to take in more Syrian refugees following much publicised struggles of Syrian refugees, in particular that of children dying in the dangerous journey to get to Europe’s safety from Syria.
After the Erawan Shrine and Sathorn Pier bombings, Thai authorities believe suspects only involved a minor group of individuals, suggesting only 10 people were involved in both incidents. The Thai government calls on Interpol and Australian police to aid its investigation.
Thailand said that international terror groups were unlikely suspects in the bombing. National Police Chief Somyot Poompanmoung said the bombers were part of a network of 10 people. No arrests of suspects have been made.
The police had released a sketch of the suspect’s possible facial appearance. The warrant supplied for the suspect described him as an “unnamed foreigner”. However, the police have yet to say how they reached the conclusion.
Junta Spokespoerson Col Winthai Suvaree said:
“Security agencies have cooperated with agencies from allied countries and have come to the preliminary conclusion that the incident is unlikely to be linked to international terrorism,”
The Erawan Bombings had killed 20 people including Asian and Western foreigners and had injured more than a hundred people.
Airlines have asked passengers flying from Singapore to Sydney on Thursday to voluntarily hand some photos of the Erawan shrine to call the Australian police to aid them in their investigation.
According to the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR), Greece requires a wide debt relief to avoid falling back into permanent depression. It warns that Greece can suffer fresh damage from austerity measures demanded by its creditors and it will remain stuck unless it has substantial debt relief.
NIESR expects that the increases in VAT that the Syriza-led government reluctantly accepted for its new bailout will result in a 1% fall in national output for 2016. NIESR said that by the time the Greek economy begins growing again, gross domestic product would drop by 30% than the start of the crisis in 2010. They estimated to be 7% lower before Greece even joined the EU in 2001.
NIESR published the report after the heavy selling of bank shares on the Athens stock market. Five bank shares – National Bank of Greece, Alpha Bank. Piraeus Bank, Attica Bank and Eurobank – suffered double digit losses over 30%, which triggered an automatic trading suspension.
However the main Greek stock market index had a steadier day after posting a decline of just 1%. Banks, hit hard by a combination of a poor-performing economy, deposit flight, the rising number of non-performing loans and the capital controls introduced by the Greek government, will have much relief after clearing more than half of its debt.
Prime Minister David Cameron said “There are people born and raised in this country who don’t really identify with Britain.” The statement is to be said in a keynote speech in Birmingham on Monday as the government cements its strategy to tackle extremist ideology. Cameron said it was the “struggle of our generation.”
Cameron is to argue that people need to realise that Islamist extremism can be attractive to a great group of people and this is crucial to preventing the disaster. Cameron will also announce that the head of the government’s troubled families unit Louise Casey will chair a review of how to boost opportunity in isolated UK communities.
“When people say: ‘It’s because of the involvement in the Iraq war that people are attacking the west,’ we should remind them: 9/11 – the biggest loss of life of British citizens in a terrorist attack – happened before the Iraq war,” Cameron will say.
“When they say that these are wronged Muslims getting revenge on their western wrongdoers, let’s remind them: from Kosovo to Somalia, countries like Britain have stepped in to save Muslim people from massacres. It’s groups like [Islamic State], al-Qaeda and Boko Haram that are the ones murdering Muslims.”
He will continue: “Others might say: it’s because terrorists are driven to their actions by poverty. But that ignores the fact that many of these terrorists have had the full advantages of prosperous families and a western university education.
“I am not saying these issues aren’t important. But let’s not delude ourselves. We could deal with all these issues – and some people in our country and elsewhere would still be drawn to Islamist extremism.”
The Libyan Investment Authority has had a turbulent recent history that is a mirror of the wider unrest and civil war within the nation as a whole. No event more publically illustrated this than the sudden replacement back in October of its Chairman Abdulrahman Benyezza. A fierce battle over the $67 billion sovereign wealth fund is being fought between the internationally recognised government and Islamists who have seized control of Tripoli, the nation’s capital.
Mr Benyezza, a former minister, was replaced as chairman of the board of the LIA on October 27th 2014 by Hassan Ahmed Bouhadi, who promptly appointed Ahmed Ali Attiga, a former World Bank official as the LIA’s new chief executive.
The change in leadership came as the LIA began court proceedings against Goldman Sachs. The fund, which was the main investment body for Muammar Gaddafi’s government claims that the Wall Street giant misled LIA employees into making $1.2 billion worth of trades in high risk investments that the LIA employees did not understand. The LIA is seeking damages in a strongly contested court battle.
The LIA has found itself caught up in the battle between the Islamist militias and the official government that is currently operating out of Tobruk. Benyezza’s replacement was seen as a consolidation of power by the Tobruk government following the Islamists’ occupation of the LIA’s office in Tripoli. The fund is currently being forced to run its business from Malta while political stability is achieved.
As Greece’s “No” vote reverberates throughout Europe, Grexit fears have spooked investors as shares everywhere have dropped in value over $22 billion during the early trade.
The S&P/ASX 200 Index finished 2014-15 with just a 1 per cent return for the year. The Greek Debt Crisis is not just to blame, according to analysts. The slowing Chinese economy and fears over overpriced bank shares were also included in the problems.
Greece’s place in the Eurozone is still uncertain despite reassurances by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras that Greece will return to the negotiating table with a “better negotiating position” with a No vote.
Many experts, including Societe Generale, indicated that losing the least amount of money is the best source of success for 2015. However, other analysts indicate that boosting higher cash allocations may be crucial and that people should be aware where they place their risks.
The Greek No vote also guaranteed a limited upside for Gold. Gold is an alternative investment during times of financial and economic uncertainties. Gold has gained as the euro slumped because of the Eurozone crisis. Its growth is also attributed to the fall of US equity futures.
Meanwhile, investors are banking in the European Central Bank to re-pledge extra liquidity for Greece as it recovers.
The Islamic State militants continue to advance despite the increased threat of US and Arab airstrikes in key territories by using a mix of persuasion and violence. The Islamic State’s agenda has appealed to many Sunni Muslims who find an absence of leadership in their order. Despite eliminating other Sunni Muslim groups in opposition, majority of Sunnis still believe in the Islamic State.
According to Syrian Province Journalist and Political Analyst Ibrahim Hamidi, the Islamic State is hijacking legitimate demands. Without international action against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and a solidified Sunni union alternative to the IS, the extremists will still continue to gain support.
According to Hamidi, this was what makes the Sunni Muslims dangerous. He described that defeating the IS needs a comprehensive approach.
Assad still remains in power in Syria and is backed by Iran and Hezbollah. The US finds half-hearted allies in the Iraqi Shiite-led government and Iranian-backed militias.
Hamidi said that for every Sunni Muslim now affected by the sectarian polarisation, there is a little Islamic State militant believing in the group.
The US is targeting rival Sunni insurgent groups and the Iraqi leadership as the ones who could combat the Islamic State in Syria. The US steers clear from the al-Qaeda affiliated Nusra Front, who openly condemned the Islamic State.
According to Gambia of West Africa, it would take all Rohingya Refugees as part of its “sacred duty” to care for its Muslim brothers.
Currently, refugees from Rohingya, Myanmar are drifting in the seas of Malaysia and Indonesia.
Gambia said that “as human beings and fellow Muslims,” it is their duty to help alleviate the sufferings and hardships of their brothers.
The country had also appealed to the international community to provide support in the form of tents, bedding, household materials and medicines to help their country develop lands and camps that would guarantee sanitary conditions.
The United States has announced its support for the resettlement of the Rohingya refugees.
According to State Department Spokeswoman Marie Harif, the United States would take a lead role in any multi-country effort.
Harif said the US is carefully looking at Malaysia and Indonesia’s request to re-settle the refugees.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had appealed for migrants to be rescued. The UN refugee agency said nearly 3,000 people were left to drown at sea after smugglers dropped them off as Thailand’s crackdown disrupted the smuggling routes.
According to former Conservative Prime Minister Sir John Major, Labour and SNP could possibly “divide and rule” by turning the “rich against the poor and the worker against the boss.”
Major said that the idea of a Labour-SNP government would mean a division between peoples.
Major said that growing up with Labour, the party divides to rule. They will win votes by dividing the rich against the poor.
Major said that the country needs unity and not more separation during the election.
Prime Minister David Cameron intends to continue his 36-hour non-stop tour of hte country by convincing voters not to vote for extreme change by putting in place Milliband and the SNP. Cameron had gone far off to say that Miliband is a “con” that intends to put himself into Downing Street.
Meanwhile, Former Prime Minister Sir John Major had been called by the Tories from time to time to convince the people during moments of national importance. He had warned about the dangers of having Scottish Independence for the rest of the United Kingdom.
He had also warned people in a column that the “short-term attraction” of voting for a minority party would get Britain nowhere. He said that the Tories build up the UK’s economy but Labour will wreck it.