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Pope: an African high risk trip

High alert for Pope’s visit to Africa from November 25 to 30. The stages will be Kenya, Uganda and Central African Republic, where terror attack risk is high, as confirmed since last two months by the French intelligence.

Despite the 148 dead in Kenyan university last April, Central African Republic causes the Holy See and the French Army, Head of the UN mission there, concern. High alert will be reached on November 29, at the opening of Jubilee of Mercy for Africa. Furthermore, Paris and, in particular, Mali hotel attacks further raise anxiety.

Obvious anxiety in Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin statement: “The Pope wants to go in Africa, even in its most critical stage, Central African Republic, where clashes resumed,” but “if there was ongoing conflicts, it would put Pope and population security at risk. ”

However, this anxiety does not deter the Pope, “ready – as said yesterday – to support interreligious dialogue to promote peaceful coexistence in your country.”

Central African Republic, as other African countries, lives an internal conflict because of civil war begun two and a half ago. Initially, it was not a religious but a political clash between rebels and regular army. After the deposition of President Bozize, this civil war became a religious conflict.

Analyzing the geography of the Central African Republic, the Center-South is more developed and mainly inhabited by Christians, who account for 80% of the total population. The North, however, is less developed and Muslims are in the majority. The lack of attention towards this territory from the capital city of Bangui favored rebels, who poured from aboard and the North of the country.

From 2003 to 2013, the protagonist of the Central African political scene was former President Bozize, twice elected and twice protected by the French army (in 2003 and 2006) during the two civil wars.

The first one (2003-2007) when the politician and soldier Michel Djotodia was his opponent. The second one, despite the cease-fire, in 2012, when presidential guards left him. After the resulting humanitarian crisis, Bozize fled to Cameroon. It was “Seleka”, a coalition of rebel group composed of Central Africans, Chadians and Sudaneses, to expel him.

In 2013, rebels become regular army. However, this new situation caused further clashes in the country, the third civil war since 2003. However, the UN resolution on December authorized France to a military intervention in Central African Republic.

In January 2014 it Catherine Samba-Panza, Christian but neutral, was elected president. She was the first woman to hold the post. Clashes between Muslims and Christians, however, continue to this day.
Giacomo Pratali


Paris under siege: European 9/11

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At least 127 killed and 197 injured, including no less than 80 seriously wounded. These are dramatic numbers, which are increasing hour by hour, of bombings attacks, on the cry of “it’s for Syria” or “Allahu Akbar” that shook Paris Friday, 13 November. 7 actions accomplished in the heart of the French capital claimed by Islamic State.
The most important at the Bataclan theatre, where about 1,500 people were attending a rock concert. Here, three terrorists went into action, initially taking about a hundred hostages, while 30 was able to immediately escape. Attackers then fired on the crowd. The police raid during night provoked their killing, but also the dramatic discovery of 118 corpses.

This is the most serious incident. But terror lasted for several hours, during which there was fear of further actions. And the high alert, which was followed by the mobilization of more than 1,500 units of the French army, involved several locations in the center of Paris. And blood and victims have consequently risen. 18 killed at La Belle Equipe bar, 15 at Le Carillon bar and Le Petit Cambodge restaurant, 5 at Pizzeria La Casa Nostra, 3 outside Stade France, where, during the friendly match France-Germany, three strong explosions, caused by as many explosions, were heard. On the other side, in addition to the three terrorists killed at the Bataclan, seven blew themselves up, also around 15 and 17 years old.

French President Francois Hollande, who attended match, was immediately cleared out for security reasons and called an extraordinary Council of Ministers. During the speech to the Frech People, he asked the Parisians to open their homes and do not lack the solidarity towards those who was involved. Moreover, declared a “alpha” high alert and announced partial closure and intensification of border controls (in the morning was closed on Mont Blanc pass linking Italy and France).

“As I speak, terrorist attacks of unprecedented proportions are underway in the Paris area. Two decisions will be taken: a state of emergency will be declared, which means that some places will be closed, traffic may be banned, and there will also be searches which may be decided throughout Île-de-France [greater Paris]. The state of emergency will be proclaimed throughout the territory [of France]. The second decision I have made is the closure of borders. We must ensure that no one enters to commit any crimes and that those who have committed the crimes that we have unfortunately seen can also be arrested if they should leave the territory. “ he said.


Giacomo Pratali


Winter ices migrants flows but not concerns

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Only a year ago, in 2014, the most important route into Europe for migrants was across the Mediterranean sea, in boats of up to 800 passengers from the North African coast to Italy (Lampedusa sas primary destination) or Malta: the southern route. So far in 2015, migration along the alternative eastern route has rised.



Matter of fact, during 2012 a fence was erected on the border between Turkey and Greece, forcing migrants to take boats from the Turkish coast to nearby Greek islands or travel north to the Bulgarian border. In 2014, Bulgaria began building its own fence to prevent this.

In September 2015 alone, 156,000 immigrants took the eastern route compared to just 7,000 in the same month the previous year.

The Schengen area makes things easier once the migrants have entered Hungary or Slovenia, but, on the other hand, things are getting much harder to deal, to administrate for these countries. In early July, Hungary began building a fence on its Serbian border, forcing the migrants on the west route through Croatia, often entering Hungary from there and a second fence was built on the Croatian border in October, pushing people up to Slovenia. Actually, Slovenia is building a fence itself. Balcans countries are struggling in order to face the situation. Albanian Government has already stated that the country will make what’s in it’s possibilty to mitigate the pressure in the area.

European countries are forced, under pressure, to find long term solutions, Germany in first place.

Angela Merkel, German Chancellor and most powerful woman in the planet, is facing risks on her own political body, over migrants crise . When migrants began to arrive in large numbers over the summer, she announced publicly that they were to be welcomed rather than turned away. Considering that an imponent number of Syrians living in Turkey have been able to make a living only because of temporary employment or casual labor, but , as Turkish economy has begun to deteriorate, unemployment has grown by being unaffordable, those Syrians are also leaving Turkey. So, what’s next?

Germany is home to the vast majority of past Turkish immigrants into Europe, and tensions have long been high over the issue. Syrians have a explicit and strong case for asylum, and it is extremely hard to repatriate them. The European Union wants to keep the Balkan countries from confronting one another over migrant flows. At the same time, the bloc wants to keep borders within Europe as open as possible to preserve the union’s structure while apportioning them fairly across the Continent. The Oct. 25 summit likely discussed all of the possible solutions along the migrant route and most summits during last two years have tried the same.

As temperatures drop immigrant flow will arrest the emergency. The latest flows have also revealed a drop in the portion of migrants from Syria and a rise in Afghan and African migrants, partly because of cheap Turkish Airlines flights to North Africa. Unlike Syrians, authorities will find it much easier to send back migrants from these points of origin.

But the fact is that war keeps on radicalizing in Syrian territories, which is much more than a preview on warmer season to come: migrants are most likely not stopping their desperate journeys.


Sabiena Stefanaj


Business value and risk management

Defence/Miscellaneous di

All businesses face similar risks in their daily routine. Understanding what risks we are going through is not as simple as it seems to be. But it is sure, no matter what business we are involved in, that we have to deal with risks of different nature, that will hit our interests in various ways and will affect the health of our business.

The way it will happen is strictly linked to two points, that are pivotal: the first concerns the planning of the appropriate countermeasures, the second concerns the actions. This two big areas include multiple activities, that all start from the very understanding of the meaning of risk.

Considering the risk and therefore the possibility that an undesired event might take place is, first of all, an assumption of responsibility. It is so because it involves the structure of the business as a whole. It involves not only the money but the people behind them, involves the physical infrastructure (consider the example of a natural disaster), the IT infrastructures.

Risk can be defined as the probability that a damaging event has to happen. It is therefore a probability, which means that is based on two opposite considerations, that finally determine the likelihood of an event, given some variables: whether if an undesired and harmful event will happen or not. From here it comes natural that, before considering the probability of an event, and whether we are going to face it or not, or whether we will rather consider it or not, we have to accept it. This is the first step, a step we could call “the acceptance” of the risk. Gaining acceptance of risk will give us big advantages. This step is going to shape decision making policies in all the aspects of the organization, since it is related with the factor that is probably the most important among all those involved in the processes: the human factor. Gaining acceptance of risk means gain acceptance of the role of uncertainty. Especially in a globalized world, guided by the globalizations of the financial flows (volatility of the financial markets) and the globalization of the information, that amplifies and differentiates incomes and outcomes.

A comprehensive understanding of risk must take into consideration also the consequences of the event. This is even more important because it allows us to focus not only on data and scenarios that, at least at the beginning can seem to be unclear and dispersive, but allows us to stay focused on the importance of our business, showing what could be the consequences once one or more events will take place. We are not talking about a step, neither we are talking about an overnight and immediate success.

Then, what risk management is? It can be considered as a process, a sum of actions focused on a specific but not static path, whose goal is to foreseen accidents to whom oppose a predetermined action. What a good risk management policy is aimed to do is to protect the value at a firm. The value can be considered as the intrinsic and extrinsic merit of the assets, that will ultimately bring an increase of money, better reputation and so on. So we have tangible and intangible value (think about the value of the experience of the employees). And despite the intangible value is often underestimated because apparently not able to bring added value or profit, it is the very treasure of every corporation.

A good risk management policy is, after all, a process through which the elements involved are able to be exploited as best as possible and, by doing this, the involvement of the team is paramount (consider the importance of the Human Resources Manager or Consultant, once far from being at the center of the organization policy, now the core of the biggest and larger success firms). It gives, by the accuracy of the process and the assessment, the possibility to share knowledge, share participation.

Therefore, a good business policy is able to do two pivotal things: on one side it protects and improves the expertises of the single members of the team (and acts as a glue among them), and at the same time allows the business to wisely pinpoint critical factors, elements, verify them and solve the issues. This way it helps evolve the business and the people involved in it. Never take it for granted. This process will give a corporation the benefits of the establishment of a better networking policy between people, colleagues, teams and different corporation environments. The comprehensive use of the good tools in risk management practices will help create a better networking grid in the business, allowing all the floors communicating, acting, assessing and evaluating in a fluid and pragmatic manner.

The assets then can be included in three big categories. Human, organizational and structural asset. What can undermine the value of a business is usually called threat, but the possibility that a single or multiple set of threats are able to harm the interests of a business is increased by the existing links between all the assets and their vulnerabilities. We can imagine a vulnerability as an intrinsic feature of an asset. More, having every asset its own vulnerability (or vulnerabilities) and being connected in a grid with other assets, a harmful event could show up as a cascade process, as a multiplier of threats itself.

Risk has, in its definition (although we have to consider the little convergence of the numerous definitions of the term) a downside and an upside, that are known as crisis and opportunity. Without a correct risk management process we won’t be able to exploit the opportunity. But being concerned about risk doesn’t have to mean that a manager has to avoid it tu cur: the process of managing and assessing risks has one important goal, at the very end. The core of the processes to minimize damages and avoid useless risks, focusing instead on those that are worth it. It’s true that every risk that aims to a better life, more knowledge or more money it’s theoretically worth it. Minimizing risks and minimizing losses, means take those risks that really worth efforts. So, a business that decides not to be exposed to risks, is unlikely to generate new incomes. A business that is exposed to the wrong risks is likely to suffer big losses. What risk management is supposed to do is just a “check and balance” between risk and reward.

Risk management has to be addressed with a wider view. Theories have usually provided different ways to look at it, often too narrow, though every sector has its own policy and methodology. The narrower is the risk a company decides to consider, the more it will be prepared to face it. It is, simply, a more complete and competitive view of risks that enabled, at the very end, their victory and success.
Francesco Danzi


Libya: agreement in the balance

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Tobruk rejects the Council of Presidency, but does not formally vote on the proposal on 9 October. International Community is waiting for Tripoli response. National unity government hangs in the balance. However, Leon mandate at maturity and Daesh radicalization require a quickly change.

UN envoy Bernardino Leon buoyancy at the end of favorable negotiations on October 9, in which it was drawn up draft agreement and national unity government designations, contradicts Tobruk Parliament rejection on October 19 of Presidential Council submitted by the United Nations.

Then, not a formal vote against the deal. However, the 153 deputies of the Assembly have sent a powerful message to the United Nations and Tripoli. A discontent consisted of seventy representatives, who are ready, as reported by Libyan Herald, to distance themselves from the Tobruk position.

Now, there is waiting for Tripoli response, even if the premises on October 19, when draft was turned down by GNC head Nuri Abu Sahimin, who has disapproved “formal invitation to New York in the presence of Tobruk Foreign Minister, supported by an illegal parliament since resolved by the Constitutional Court, a Libyan delegate to the UN removed by Congress and Egypt and Emirates Foreign ministers “.

However, Tobruk Parliament’s mandate has just officially expired Monday, October 19 (though it has since been extended). Just as Leon, to whom will succeed the German Martin Kobler and close to the failure of his mission in Libya. And EU military, economical and social plan in support of the national unity government, announced by High Representative Federica Mogherini last October 20, seems unrealistic if Tobruk and Tripoli will not say yes to the United Nations draft.

In addition to the joint statement of several countries in recent days, the reactions of the last hours minimize what happened in Tobruk: “It did not approve nor reject. It was only decided not to submit the proposal to the vote of the Chamber of Representatives “, Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni said. While Leon reiterated that “the process goes on. There is no chance for small groups or personalities to hijack this process. The political solution is the only real alternative,” Leon restated.

Next hours are crucial. The several institutional deadlines but, above all, Daesh radicalization in a strategic city as Benghazi demands an urgent political unique solution.

Giacomo Pratali


DAN EUROPE tests underwater drone

CADDY is an underwater drone and floating satellite designed to understand the body language of a scuba divers in distress.

The Cognitive Autonomous Diving Buddy, from where the acronym originates, is an EU-funded project currently being tested to ensure it is smart enough to be used by divers who scan the seabed alone.

“When you consider that half of diving accidents involve unaccompanied scuba-divers, CADDY will surely revolutionise the underwater experience. DAN Europe is very proud to contribute to the development of such a revolutionary piece of technology, especially since it guarantees diver safety, which is pivotal for our organisation,” said Prof. Salih Murat Egi, coordinator of the project for DAN Europe.

As part of the project, DAN is currently involved in the vehicle testing and regulating the manoeuvring capabilities of the devices to ensure all equipment used is safe.

“Diver safety is an essential component of the CADDY project and whenever diver safety is involved, DAN steps in. We’re here to represent the diving community and assist to build future technologies that will take diving to the next level,” he added.

CADDY is essentially composed of two ‘robots’ operating autonomously — one from the surface and another one from the vicinity of the diver. The latter will interpret a scuba-diver’s behaviour and is intelligent enough to detect anomalies. Meanwhile, the surface robot navigates the underwater drone and can communicate with the command centre in case of emergency.

CADDY has three main functions to ensure a safe and carefree diving experience: guide the diver, continuously monitor his body language, and assist his work through automated camera and torch light.

“DAN’s team of experienced researchers is also reviewing a system that generates an automatic diver status report generation system and testing the use of sophisticated acoustical communication technologies that relays the diver cognitive status to the command center” said Prof. Egi.

The diving buddy will also be trained to guide a diver from one spot to another on a predefined path so in case of emergency, the diver will be steered to a safe route to the surface or vessel.

Greece, Spannaus: “Why does the EU insist on a policy that doesn’t work?”

Europe/Miscellaneous di

Greece’s debt crisis is one of the hottest geopolitical issues at the moment. Germany imposed a rescue package last week. The United States played a role of political deterrence towards the EU, to avoid the possibility that Athens could go into Moscow’s sphere of influence. To talk about these issues, European Affairs interviewed Andrew Spannaus, journalist and Director of

With Tsipras’s full-scale surrender, has Greece essentially become a protectorate of Brussels, or better, of Berlin?

“Europe wasted a great opportunity. After talking about the need to shift from austerity to growth, in essence nothing has changed. The European establishment – led by Germany, but don’t let the others off the hook – doubled down, using every weapon possible rather than admit to the failure of its economic policy over the last twenty years.
This is a defeat not only for Greece, but for Europe itself, which has shown 1. that it is unwilling to recognize its own mistakes, and refuses to question the fanatical adherence to budget parameters; and 2. that in this form Europe is not compatible with democracy.
The biggest question is: who’s giving the orders in Brussels and Berlin? Why does the EU insist on a policy that doesn’t work? It’s one thing to have to clean up problems and inefficiencies from the past, but the decision to make the situation worse through a policy of budget cuts and new taxes shows that something else is afoot. Europe has abandoned the best parts of its own history and now answers to other interests.”


“Despite the mistakes made in the past five months, I am proud that I have defended our people.” This is what Tsipras said to the Greek Parliament, at the time of the vote on the measures imposed by Europe. In your view, Did Syriza betray its electoral mandate and the result of the referendum?

“Over the past few months the Greek government alternated between a hardline position and a softer one. The goal was always to influence the negotiations and obtain some concessions. At a certain point it looked like Tsipras had decided to get serious: first with the opening towards Russia, and then the referendum. In the end though, he gave in to the blackmail and demonstrated that he wasn’t willing to risk the consequences of a full break-up.
The Greek people clearly rejected austerity; the problem is that in theory they wanted to remain in Europe as well. So while Tsipras certainly deserves some criticism, the fact remains that the two goals were incompatible: Europe = austerity, so there was no solution.
It’s not over yet. If the plan that Greece has accepted is actually implemented then the situation will get even worse; things could flair up again soon. Moreover, the political debate has changed: it’s impossible now to hide the contradictions and weaknesses of the current economic policy. Sooner or later there will be political leaders, and maybe entire countries, who will refuse to continue in this direction.”


The International Monetary Fund has said that Greece’s debt is unsustainable. Will the EU plan go forward anyway?

“The plan will go forward, but it won’t work. The first “rescue” packages for Greece – in which public money was used to save the private banks, in particular those in Germany and France – were supposed to create the conditions for economic recovery. The same was said for Italy. In reality the result was a drop in GDP, at catastrophic levels in Greece (-30%).
The notion that this type of debt can be repaid through spending cuts is simply absurd. The solution is to restructure and cancel part of the debt, and above all to implement a policy of investment to spur growth. This means ignoring certain dogmas, for example by increasing productive public spending. The part of the debt which is real, and not just due to speculative maneuvers, can be repaid only if the economy is actually growing; the current policy prohibits this, and thus can only fail.”


How big a role did the United States play in facilitating the negotiations between the EU and Greece? Was there, and is there, a real possibility that Athens could get closer to Moscow?

“A myth exists in Europe, about how the United States is against the Euro and afraid of the European Union. However, even if we were to grant the premise that the U.S. sees Europe only as a competitor, there is nothing to be afraid of as long as the current economic policy remains in place.
In the name of political union the strength and cohesion of the nations of Europe is being destroyed. The foundation of the EU was quite different, but starting in the 1990s a shift was made to the so-called “free market” policy that allowed large financial interests to dominate the economy. This is good for a few, not for the many.
Secondly, this myth has been debunked by the American position in this crisis: the U.S. didn’t want to see Europe break up, precisely due to the risk of a geopolitical shock. Tsipras showed that he understood the stakes when in St. Petersburg he said that a “new economic world is being formed,” while “the center of gravity of economic development is shifting.”
The West decided to close ranks, to avoid giving an opening to our “enemy” Putin. However the reality is that Europe’s policy of continuous austerity risks making the alternative of the BRICS even more attractive: numerous countries are already breaking away from the Western financial institutions precisely in order to avoid being controlled by a system dominated by large financial interests.”
Giacomo Pratali


Europe and the US in support of the national unity of Libya

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The Governments of France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States of America reaffirm their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of Libya, and to ensuring that Libyan economic, financial, and energy resources are used for the benefit of all Libyan people.
Talks of peace between Tobruk and Tripoli governments can’t stop them: “At a time when the UN-sponsored political process is making progress towards a lasting resolution of the conflict in Libya, we express our concern at attempts to divert Libyan resources to the narrow benefit of any side in the conflict and to disrupt financial and economic institutions that belong to all Libyans”.
Libyans establishments and economy are independent: “We reiterate our expectation that those on all sides representing Libya’s independent institutions, namely the Central Bank of Libya (CBL), the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), the National Oil Corporation (NOC) and the Libyan Post Telecommunications and Information technology company (LPTIC) will continue to act in the long term interests of the Libyan people pending clarification of unified governance structures under a Government of National Accord”.
National unity is necessary to fight Islamic State: “We reiterate that Libya’s challenges can only be addressed by a government that can effectively oversee and protect Libya’s independent institutions, whose role is to safeguard Libya’s resources for the benefit of all Libyans.  Terrorists are exploiting this conflict to establish a presence in Libya and will take advantage of Libya’s national wealth to advance their appalling transnational agenda”.
France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States of America reiterate support for all Libyans: “Libya is fortunate to have the resources to enable it to become a peaceful and prosperous nation, with a powerful and positive impact on the wider region. We urge all Libyans to support the continued independence of its financial and economic institutions”.

Moas, droni e medici in soccorso ai migranti

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Migrant Offshor Aid Station (MOAS) insieme a “Medici senza frontiere” ha lanciato lo scorso 2 maggio la missione di soccorso nel mediterraneo in aiuto alle imbarcazione in difficoltà dei crescenti flussi migratori verso l’Europa.

Il MOAS con la usa nave M.Y. Phoenix di quaranta metri presidia il tratto di mare che divide l’Italia alle coste libiche e che ha visto naufragare e affondare tanti barconi carichi di speranze.

Questa missione è una risposta concreta alla grande crisi umanitaria che si è accesa in questi mesi con l’avanzare della guerra e del califfato nero.
MOAS.EU_infographicsIl dibattito su cosa fare e come farlo si è acceso lentamente spinto soprattutto dalla pressione dell’opinione pubblica ma ancora senza una risposta concreta mentre in quel tratto di mare i barconi continuano a partire e affondare.

La risposta concreta sono i quaranta metri di nave, i due Droni CAMCOPTER S100 che partono per monitorare le condizioni delle imbarcazioni sospette e  il team formato da  due medici e un’infermiera messi a disposizione da Medici senza Frontiere.

Second rescue_lr“Mentre gli altri dibattono ancora circa i pro e i contro del salvare vite umane, noi restiamo convinti che nessuno merita di annegare” ha detto il direttore di MOAS Martin Xuereb. “L’anno scorso abbiamo salvato circa 3000 persone in 60 giorni, quest’anno staremo in mare per sei mesi per soccorre tutti coloro che per una ragione o l’altra hanno deciso di intraprendere un viaggio così rischioso nel Mediterraneo. Nel 2015, abbiamo deciso di avere a bordo MSF per rendere la missione MOAS ancora più efficiente. Siamo estremamente orgogliosi di poter offrire la nostra competenza e il nostro supporto ai centri di coordinamento Italiani e Maltesi per lo scopo comune di salvare vite umane” ha continuato Xuereb

MOAS è composto da volontari, professionisti della sicurezza, personale medico, e ufficiali marittimi esperti che si impegnano  per aiutare a prevenire ulteriori catastrofi in mare.

La ONG è stata fondata da Christopher Catrambone e Regina Catrambone che nel 2006 hanno fondato a Tangeri, un’azienda leader a livello mondiale specializzata in assicurazione e assistenza in situazioni d’emergenza. Dopo i 400 migranti annegati nei pressi dell’isola italiana di Lampedusa nel 2013, i Catrambone decisero di fondare MOAS.

Essi sperano che l’iniziativa umanitaria ispirare gli altri a livello globale a contribuire nel dissipare ciò che Papa Francesco chiama “globalizzazione di indifferenza”.
Drone takeoff_lrIl direttore delle operazioni Martin Xuereb è nato a Malta, ha una laurea in Scienze e un Diploma in Sociologia presso l’Open University in seguito ha conseguito un master in Studi Internazionali al Kings College di Londra, e si è formato in Italia e nel Regno Unito presso la Royal Military Academy Sandhurst e il Royal College of Studi per la Difesa.

Durante la sua carriera militare, Xuereb ha condotto molte missioni di aiuto umanitario nel  Kosovo devastato dalla guerra e moltissime altre missioni di ricerca e soccorso sono state portate a termine durante il suo mandato di capo della Difesa di Malta.

Professionalità, esperienza e passione sono gli ingredienti fondamentali di questa organizzazione che lo scorso anno ha salvato 3.400 persone in 60 giorni, questa missione durerà 6 mesi.

Il MOAS è una organizzazione non governativa senza fini di lucro che mantiene tutta la sua organizzazione grazie alle donazioni che possono essere fatte anche on line sul loro sito , anche un solo piccolo contributo permetterà ala nave un ora di navigazione in più, ai droni di sollevarsi ancora, ai medici di restare in mare ancora e salvare tante vite umane.


Alessandro Conte

Ukraine, Msf report: it’s a humanitarian emergency

Europe/Miscellaneous di

Ukraine is one of the topics on the international board. Over 15000 injured patients, 1600 pregnant women followed by hospitals, about 4000 people with chronic diseases. These numbers are reported by Gabriele Eminente, Msf Italy Director-General, in our interview.

 Where does Msf work in Ukraine? Which are its activities?

Msf planned its humanitarian intervention in a different way because of the kind of conflict which developed in Ukraine in the last year. We usually work with our facilities and fields after an emergency. However, we chose an operational strategy base on five teams which could move with greater perception and portability on territory. The area that i mean is the front line and the band immediately behind. Some groups are located in Donetsk and Lugansk, but we have mobile units for two reasons. The first one, watching Kramatorsk bombing, it’s because we are supporting local hospital and health care facilities: unfortunately, civilian targets have not enough protected. The second one concerns the lack of water, food, power and above all drugs in Donbass region, which we are equipping where they’re missing.

Then we give a psychological assistance to an exhausted population. We’ve already started a hundred talks with individuals and about two thousand with group of people.

But Msf was already in Ukraine before the civil war because there is a high percentage of people affected with Hiv and multidrug-resistant tubercolosis.


Hospitals and health centers are constantly under attack from the beginning of the year: after the second Minsk agreement, does the humanitarian corridor eventuality exist?

First of all I want to note the two requests from Msf to Ukrainians and separatists: the instant cease fire; population’s releasing from bombed areas. About the humanitarian corridor, Debaltseve context is one of the most critical as it’s halfway between Donetsk and Lugansk and it’s an important road and railway intersection: so, it’s an essential military target for the warring parties. At the beginning of February, it’s announced the opening of a corridor to exit remaining civilians, but it’s been very difficult to enforce it. It’ll be crucial to verify how the troops will transpose institutional directives.


How did war progress in the last year?

This crisis have lived many steps. Last summer was particularly bloody, as Malaysian shot down. The cease fire on September 2014 was a breakdown. And it started a new violent spell between 2014 and 2015. There’s two changes from last year to now. First one we are in the middle of winter. Second one this permanently war has been increasing other effects: Kiev has stopped payment of salaries and financial flows to public servants who live in the eastern regions. This has played up lack of cash, food, and drugs. Msf has collected testimonies from civilians, particularly women and children, who has been forced to refuge in a homeless half-finished center.


How are Ukrainian and Pro-Russian populations, especially children, wounded after so many wartime trauma? How will this factor influence peace process?

 As in other similar contexts, there are deep psychological wounds to heal. Our current work is explicitly focusing on the immediate mental assistance. Citizens have shared in two different languages and cultures parts. But now we need end war and save them.


The Un have reported more than 5000 victims since Ukrainian crisis.

 I think we have gone over. Ourselves we are observing in Ukraine. Msf’s intervention in Donetsk and Lugansk regions clearly speaks: over 15000 injured patients, 1600 pregnant women followed by our hospitals, about 4000 people with chronic diseases. These alarming informations are showing us a real war near our countries. Perhaps Europe and Italy have not exact feeling about Ukrainian situation yet.


Is Ukrainian war underestimated by Western and European countries?

This crisis has not interested the opinion like other conflicts yet. The media have showed the search for a diplomatic solution in recent days. But this event could due to an high and low evolution of Ukrainian war. However, we are speaking about an European fight: it’s hard to understand why there’s not a steady attention about it.

Alessandro Conte
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