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Ukraine at UN provides evidence of Russia’s violations of international law in Azov and Black Seas

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Ukraine’s delegation has informed UN member states of Russia’s consistent and gross violations of international law in the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea, the Permanent Mission of Ukraine to the United Nations has reported.

“UNCLOS [the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea] provides Ukraine with exclusive rights to the living resources within its territorial sea and exclusive economic zone. Since 2014, the Russian Federation has deliberately and blatantly violated those rights in the Black Sea, the Sea of Azov and the Kerch Strait,” Ukraine’s Permanent Representative to the UN Volodymyr Yelchenko said, while addressing the UN General Assembly on December 11.

He informed the audience that in February 2018, Ukraine filed a Memorial with the UNCLOS Tribunal establishing that Russia has violated Ukraine’s sovereign rights in the Black Sea, the Sea of Azov, and the Kerch Strait.

“Through these violations of international law, Russia is stealing Ukraine’s energy and fisheries resources, harming the livelihoods of Ukrainian fishermen, and blocking traffic to Ukrainian ports with its illegal bridge over the Kerch Strait, among other serious violations,” he said.

The diplomat also emphasized that since April 2018, more than 200 vessels have been discriminately stopped by Russia in violation of fundamental obligation under UNCLOS. He added that the Russian Federation did not stop on that and engaged in “new horrible violations of UNCLOS.” “Just 2 weeks ago, Russia attacked, seized and detained Ukrainian navy vessels in Ukraine’s exclusive economic zone,” Yelchenko added.

“Ukraine believes that Russia must and will be held accountable for its serious breaches of the international law of the sea,” the Ukrainian diplomat said.

On December 17, the General Assembly of the United Nations will consider a draft resolution on the militarization of the occupied Crimea by the Russian Federation, taking into account Russian aggression in the Kerch Strait, and in particular the seizure of Ukrainian vessels and crew. At the same time, representatives of the United States, UK, Lithuania, Sweden, Germany, Estonia, Croatia, the Netherlands, Poland, Georgia, Latvia and Canada, stated in their addresses that they had co-authored the draft resolution.

Sanchez appoints a progressive government with winks to the center

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The seventh president of the government after the restoration of democracy, Pedro Sánchez, surrounded himself with a large majority female team: he has 13 to 17 portfolios, including 11 women in the heaviest areas. A group of “personalities” who have “parked” successful careers to serve Spain, according to Sánchez on Wednesday. Progressivism, Europeanism and the commitment to equality were the characteristics that stood out, even if a look at the center is also deduced from the composition of the Cabinet. A team that with its specialization can immediately start doing politics. Sánchez appoints a progressive government. Almost all the elected representatives of the government are specialists in the subject that Sanchez has entrusted to them, so that they can start working immediately, after swearing or promising their positions and taking possession of their portfolios.

There is specialization, European experience, territorial distribution and, ideologically, various genuinely social-democratic faces – in health, education and employment; among these, first of all, Carmen Calvo in the vice-presidency, which also embodies the feminist potential and defense of equality that the head of government claims to pursue. Economic rigor borders with the liberal doctrine of the new Economy Minister, Nadia Calviño, and the Treasury owner, María Jesús Montero, does not leave orthodoxy. The vast party trajectory accumulates the Minister of Labor, Migration and Social Security, Magdalena Valerio, a member of the PSOE Executive in the areas of social security and the Toledo Pact, although she has maintained her job as an Inem official.

Spain: unaccompanied minor arrivals record, + 60%

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The flow of unaccompanied migrant minors in Spain has increased by more than 60% in 2017. With the increase in landings along the Western Mediterranean route, 6,414 foreign minors arrived in Spain last year, 2,417 more than last year. According to government data, referring only to children housed in structures and reception centers in the various regions, one third of the total recorded in the last four years was hosted in Andalusia. The report ‘Los mas solos’, (The loneliest), by the NGO Save The Children, denounces the flaws in the system of reception, protection and integration of migrant children and adolescents who arrive alone in the country. The figures for unaccompanied minors include only those who have come into contact with public authorities and for whom the minority has been certified. It remains outside the statistics who, instead, decides to be passed as adults, not to end up in reception centers, and those who voluntarily abandoned the structures.

Despite the significant increase in landings in the last 4 years, only a hundred migrant minors have asked asylum and only 31 have obtained it, according to data from the Ministry of the Interior mentioned in the report. Which means that one in 3 requests is rejected. Originally, the Moroccans have always been the most numerous, followed by the Algerians, the Syrians only in 2014 were the second largest community. Without educational and employment policies, these very young are condemned to precariousness and social exclusion. And from the day they turn 18 and remain unprotected and no support from the administration, as stated by Save The Children.

Germans prosecutors push for Puigdemont extradition

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German prosecutors are preparing the paperwork to extradite former Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont back to Spain on charges of rebellion and disturbance of the peace. A German court ruled on 22.5.2018 that Puigdemont, who was detained by German police in March, cannot be rearrested because he does not pose a flight risk. However, the state’s prosecutors want to send the former regional president back to Spain in the light of new video evidence which they say shows “violence perpetrated against the Spanish police forces.”

 

Germany to roll out mass golding centres for asylum seekers

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Germany’s policy to embed new arrivals in communities across the country is being reversed as a populist backlash builds against the chancellor’s handling of the refugee crisis. But the transit centre in Manching  has experienced high crime rates, mass protests and rising tensions between asylum seekers and security forces, the Guardian found during a visit.The converted army compound is part of a complex in Upper Bavaria and holds about 1,100 people, mainly from the west Balkans, Ukraine, Nigeria and Afghanistan.  Critics say the new centres create a double-bind on those inmates at the transit centres who have realistic chances of being granted asylum: while they are actively hindered from integrating into German society while their application is pending, they are expected to immediately integrate as soon as they get the all-clear.

Protests about seemingly small issues like food are often actually protests about the conditions in these centres as a whole. The main source of troubles is that the people inside have no perspective and aren’t allowed to work. The inability of the migrants inside the centre to engage themselves in the community was also stoking resentment and prejudice among the local population.

Merkel defends the increase of military spending in Germany to 2% of GDP

in ECONOMY/EUROPE by

Germany will increase its military spending to 2% of the GDP. Germany will adapt in this way to what Donad Trump has asked for in NATO since he arrived at the White House, despite the fact that the Berlin government continues to describe as “errors” several of the US military decisions, such as the abandonment of the nuclear pact agreement with Iran. Merkel, who did not advance specific deadlines for these increases in defense spending, reassured with these statements certain concerns arising from the German general budgets for 2018.

After the presentation of the budgets of 2018, the Minister of Defense Ursula von der Leyen did not hide her disappointment and had requested by letter to the heads of Finance of her Government an increase of the budgetary allocation of her department. The Minister of Finance, the Social Democrat Olaf Scholz, seems to have imposed his discretion on military spending and the conservative von der Leyen has acknowledged that, in that case, Germany will have to put an end to the missions abroad that it has carried out in recent years and focus on defense inside the country.

Spain: The ‘Xunta’ sends an ultimatum to the unions of justice

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Juan Jose Martin has announced that the Government of Galicia has given to the justice unions a period of three days to decide whether to attribute or refuse the last stipend of the autonomous Administration. Martin said that if the unions did not accept the last offer left on the negotiating table, the Galician executive would have chosen to take a unilateral decision on the conflict with the workers. In a meeting of May 15 with seven representatives of the unions, the Justice Department put on the table the same offer that had been proposed on April 26th and which had been rejected by workers’ assemblies, ie an increase in the monthly salary ranging between 122 and 140 euros, depending on the category of work. The UGT, CSIF and CCOO unions have decided to consult with their affiliates whether to accept the proposal or not.

Prime Minister Zaev visiting Kromberg and Schuber

in ECONOMY/EUROPE by

The Prime Minister of the Republic of Macedonia, Zoran Zaev, Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and Coordination with the Economic Departments, Kocho Angjushev, accompanied by the Mayor of the Municipality of Bitola, Natasha Petrovska and the MPs Aleksandar Kiracovski and Goran Milevski, were in the a visit to the company Kromberg and Schubert working in the industrial zone Zabeni. Within the framework of the working visit of the company, the Prime Minister, government representatives and MPs were in the tour of the production plants where they had an opportunity to get acquainted with the production processes and the way of operation of the factory. After the tour, Prime Minister Zaev and Deputy Prime Minister Angjushev held a working meeting with Uwe Schilig, technical director and Tanja Miliskovic, commercial director of the company Kromberg and Schubert.

At the meeting, information on the volume and performance of the international company was presented, which has been operating for several years in the Republic of Macedonia and employs over 6,000 workers from the Bitola region. From the presentation it was concluded that this company relates 1/3 of domestic suppliers from its total purchases. Such cooperation with domestic companies was welcomed and the company’s directors were encouraged to apply for the measures from the Economic Growth Plan that refer to support for increased cooperation with domestic companies.

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