H5N1: Myanmar expels Doctors Without Borders, accuses group of dissension

Burma wants no witnesses to genocidal policies and looking the other way when the killings start up again!

Médecins sans frontières (Doctors Without Borders) has been kicked out of Myanmar after two decades of caring for sick people in one of the world’s poorest countries, and the group said Friday that the decision risks tens of thousands of lives.

The government defended its decision, accusing the group of creating tensions and instability in violence-scarred Rakhine state, where it has faced repeated protests for treating members of the long-persecuted Rohingya Muslim minority.

“Today for the first time in MSF’s history of operations in the country, HIV/AIDS clinics in Rakhine, Shan and Kachin states, as well as Yangon division, were closed and patients were unable to receive the treatment they needed,” the group said in a statement.

via H5N1: Myanmar expels Doctors Without Borders, accuses group of dissension.

Protest For Tuition Fees: Well Done, AUB Students!

A Separate State of Mind | A Blog by Elie Fares

Sitting on the sidelines is good up to a certain point. But there comes a time when you can’t but act. AUB students did that today. And irrelevant me is proud of what they did.

I’m sick and tired of people constantly barraging anyone who goes to AUB and is complaining about tuition fees rising by saying: “you could always go to a cheaper university.”

How is their business what AUB students protest peacefully? When has everyone become so apathetic by default that they can’t but bring down people whose only goal was to be proactive in their own campus, against an administration that has become so corrupt with bureaucracy and is trying to remain afloat on their backs?

When I was at AUB back in 2010, I paid about 10 million LL in tuition fees for my sciences program. My brother whose program classifies under arts (i.e. cheaper than…

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Settlers burn entrance of house in Ramallah village | Maan News Agency

Taking inspiration from US KKK?

Israeli settlers early Thursday torched a house in Silwad village east of Ramallah, residents said.

Locals told Ma’an that settlers set the entrance of the house of Mohammad Hussein Hammad on fire and wrote racist, anti-Arab graffiti on its walls near the eastern entrance of Silwad village.

The house was empty when settlers attacked, they said.

via Settlers burn entrance of house in Ramallah village | Maan News Agency.

Moscow pledges to respect Ukraine’s territorial integrity after Russian flag raised in Crimea | News | DW.DE | 27.02.2014

Russia has denied that Moscow had any hand in the takeover of the local parliament building in Simferopol, the Crimean regional capital on Thursday. Gunmen with rocket-propelled grenades and sniper rifles erected a sign reading “Crimea is Russia” and raised the Russian flag over the building. The gunmen wore black and orange ribbons, a Russian symbol of victory in World War II.

Later there were reports that similar gunmen had taken control of the airport of Crimea’s capital Simferopol. But the AFP news agency reported early on Friday that the airport was open, although a number of armed men in uniform were standing behind the exterior security fence.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Moscow “will respect the territorial integrity of Ukraine” but voiced concerns about the situation in Crimea, according to US Secretary of State John Kerry. After meeting with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier in Washington, Kerry said he had spoken by telephone with Lavrov on Thursday.

via Moscow pledges to respect Ukraine’s territorial integrity after Russian flag raised in Crimea | News | DW.DE | 27.02.2014.

Ukrainian Journalists Rush To Fish Out Deposed President’s Dirty Secrets

KYIV — Someone wanted the records to disappear without a trace under the gray waves of the Kyiv Reservoir. Instead, they are ending up on the Internet for everyone in the world to see.

When ousted Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and his entourage were fleeing the lavish presidential residence at Mezhyhirya, outside of Kyiv, on the night of February 21-22, they apparently dumped hundreds of documents into the reservoir in an amateurish attempt to conceal the information they contain.

But journalists and scuba divers showed up on the scene just hours later and began recovering the soggy papers. Some were floating surreally along the edges of the water; others were recovered in stuffed file folders from the depths.

via Ukrainian Journalists Rush To Fish Out Deposed President’s Dirty Secrets.

Obama Opens the East Coast to Seismic Blasting; Drilling to Come | Michael Jasny’s Blog | Switchboard, from NRDC

Today the Obama administration released its long-awaited Environmental Impact Statement on oil and gas exploration off the east coast.  And not surprisingly, it is a capitulation to the forces of drill-baby-drill.  Within months, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management will start issuing permits for seismic exploration, letting companies troll our coasts from New Jersey to Florida with arrays of high-powered airguns.

via Obama Opens the East Coast to Seismic Blasting; Drilling to Come | Michael Jasny’s Blog | Switchboard, from NRDC.

Not in favor of the testing and not in favor of implying that President Obama personally opened the door for this.

Not acceptable on both counts.

Sevastopol: the Ukrainian port on Russia’s side | Europe | DW.DE | 27.02.2014

Reminds me of coal mine owners who forced workers to attend “rallies” to oppose mine safety and such…

The port is port for Russian Navy – their Guantanamo!

Buses continue to arrive late into the evening, shuttling more demonstrators toting Russian flags.

One thing that’s worrying is the different narratives being expressed. No one can agree on what’s actually happening in the country. Earlier this month, security forces opened fire on demonstrators on Kyiv’s Independence Square, known as the “Maidan,” killing more than 70 people in clashes that also killed and injured policemen.

via Sevastopol: the Ukrainian port on Russia’s side | Europe | DW.DE | 27.02.2014.

Settlers bulldoze Palestinian lands near Nablus to expand outpost | Maan News Agency

Ghassan Daghlas, a PA official who monitors settlement activities in the northern West Bank, told Ma’an that settlers from the Shvut Rachel outpost had decided to expand their illegal settlement at the expense of nearby private Palestinian landowners.

The fields that were leveled belong to Ahmad Ibrahim Hajj Muhammad, he added.

Daghlas said that the Israeli government had granted the settlers construction licenses.

via Settlers bulldoze Palestinian lands near Nablus to expand outpost | Maan News Agency.