Pan Africa Newswire
Zimbabwe revolutionary war veteran and government official, Enos Nkala, 81, has joined the ancestors. He transitioned after the ZANU-PF landslide victory on July 31., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Nkala a hero, says President
August 22, 2013
PRESIDENT Mugabe yesterday mourned veteran nationalist Cde Enos Nkala, who passed on in Harare, describing him as a great, staunch, unyielding and dependable liberation war fighter whose death is a great loss to the nation.Cde Nkala — a founding Zanu nationalist, longtime close friend of President Mugabe and former Cabinet minister — died at a private hospital in
Harare yesterday morning from a complicated ailment that saw his heart and kidneys failing.
He was 81.
Family spokesperson, Mr Herbert Nkala, said his uncle had been admitted to the clinic for the past 10 days.
The Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces told journalists at State House last night that he visited Cde Nkala in hospital on Tuesday night and little did he know that he was bidding him farewell.
‘“I said ‘Enos, Enos, ndauya’ and he opened his eyes and seemed to acknowledge my presence. I inquired from the doctor and he said his condition was very complicated.
“His heart was weak and no longer pumping blood in the normal way. There was a collapse of both the heart and the kidneys. I did not know that my visit to him will be a kind of farewell,” President Mugabe said.
“He is a great fighter for our liberation. Very, very staunch fighter, unyielding, dependable, and a good fighter. Well, perhaps at his age, born in the 1930s, his body was bound to give in.
“I want to say to his family, his wife and children that I am very, very, sorry at their loss which is our loss together. The work that their husband and father has done was not in vain.”
President Mugabe narrated the key roles played by Cde Nkala in the formation of the National Democratic Party and later Zanu, political organisations that executed the liberation struggle.
“We will be discussing what to do with him. I am sure he will be buried at the National Heroes Acre. If a person like him is not buried there, then no one else qualifies.
“We want to see him well buried, well honoured. It is a very sad loss. I will miss him as a great friend. It is a very sad loss to all of us in Zanu-PF. We were shocked by his death,” President Mugabe said.
Vice President Joice Mujuru described Cde Nkala, Zimbabwe’s first finance minister, as a liberation icon who inspired many young people to join the liberation struggle.
“He is one of the nationalists that also contributed to my being during the struggle, an icon of the revolution,” she said.
Cde Nkala, a former home affairs and defence minister, was transferred from Mater Dei Hospital in Bulawayo to a private hospital in Harare after his condition worsened.
His liberation war credentials date back to the 1960s when the struggle for independence was in its infancy.
Mr Herbert Nkala described the late nationalist as an outstanding person who left behind a great legacy.
“He was quite an outstanding person who went through a lot in his life, during the liberation struggle up to his time in government as a Cabinet minister,” Mr Nkala said.
In a statement yesterday, Zanu-PF spokesperson Cde Rugare Gumbo said the revolutionary party was in shock at the demise of the veteran nationalist.
“The party is shocked and saddened by the tragic death of one of the illustrious sons of Zimbabwe, Cde Enos Nkala, this morning (yesterday) at the Avenues Clinic, Harare.
“Cde Nkala was a veteran gallant fighter of the nationalist struggle. He represents that rare breed of nationalist cadres who defied the diabolic racist laws of the Rhodesian settler regime and was always harassed, detained and arrested for his defiant attitude and actions.
“Cde Nkala will always be remembered for being one of the architects of the formation of Zanu in 1963 (which later became Zanu-PF in 1987 after the Unity Accord). Zanu was formed in his house on 8 August 1963 in Highfield.
“Cde Nkala served in Government and held several posts in the 1980s. Burial arrangements will be announced in due course.”
As news of the veteran nationalist’s demise started filtering through, condolence messages poured in with his colleagues describing him as a fearless cadre.
Zanu-PF Bulawayo provincial chairman Professor Callistus Ndlovu said: “He is a founder member of Zanu. In fact, the party was founded at his house. He was a fearless fighter and his contemporaries know that he confronted the enemy without fear.
“At times he used strong language which antagonised him with some people. However, he never kept a grudge and whenever you quarrelled with him it would end there.”
Prof Ndlovu said Cde Nkala was a generous person who assisted a lot of people from Bulawayo to go to school and helped others to get jobs in Harare.
“I would say notwithstanding the negatives about him, Nkala was generally interested in the positive future of his own people. That is why he was concerned about the self-exclusion of his Ndebele people.
“He feared that this might create a generation of marginalised people. He wanted them to be involved,” said Prof Ndlovu.
Zanu-PF Politburo member and outgoing Matabeleland South Governor Cde Angeline Masuku said Cde Nkala was one of the people who steered the liberation struggle.
Zapu leader Dr Dumiso Dabengwa said he worked with Cde Nkala during the days of the NDP in 1960 and got used to him more at Grey Street Prison, now Bulawayo Prison, where they shared the same cell.
“I found him already there in 1961 during the days of zhi and we were made to stay together in a cell for almost four months. While in the cell we discussed the state of the liberation struggle and ideas that we were going to implement after release,” said Dr Dabengwa.
He said Cde Nkala was part of the team that formed Zapu in 1962 before the party was banned.
“In 1963 Cde Nkala and (President) Mugabe formed Zanu and I lost touch with him at that time until I met him again during the negotiations at the Lancaster House Conference,” said Dr Dabengwa.
“He was a critical person who spoke his mind out whether you liked it or not.”
Cde Nkala was born in Insiza District in Matabeleland South Province where he grew up and did his education at local schools.
He worked for an insurance company in Harare where his involvement in politics began. He did not receive much of formal education, but while in prison, he studied accounting.
Cde Nkala was one of the founders of Zanu as the party was formed at his house, 4449 Highfield, Harare in 1963.
He was the party’s first treasurer and held the post until his resignation from politics.
During the war, he served in the party’s high command.
He was detained at Gonakudzingwa for 12 years with leaders such as Ndabaningi Sithole, Leopold Takawira, Edgar Tekere, Maurice Nyagumbo, all late, and President Mugabe.
At independence in 1980 Cde Nkala became the Minister of Finance until 1983 when he was moved to the Ministry of National Supplies.
In 1985, he became Minister of Home Affairs, and then moved over to Defence after the 1985 elections.
Cde Nkala resigned from Government in 1989 at the height of the Willowgate scandal, which involved the acquisition of several vehicles from Willowvale Mazda Motor Industries by individuals in Government.
The vehicles were then sold at exorbitant prices in a market that was starved of new vehicles. Last year, Cde Nkala said he was bitter about the way he was forced to leave politics in 1989, insisting that he chose to resign rather appear before the Wilson Sandura Commission because he was not wrong.
Since then, he was not active in politics until his death. Mourners are gathered at House Number 62 Carrick Road, Borrowdale, Harare, while in Bulawayo they are gathered at Cde Nkala’s house at House Number 9 Eastwood Road, Woodlands.
Cde Nkala is survived by his wife, Thandiwe, eight children, six grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
Kenneth Kaunda and Martin Luther King making a joint statement against US investment in South Africa at the UN in 1965. Kaunda was the former leader of the United National Independence Party which led Zambia to independence., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Kaunda urges renewal of pan-Africanism
August 22, 2013
LUSAKA. — Zambia’s founding President Dr Kenneth Kaunda has asked African countries to rekindle the spirit of pan-Africanism and claim that which belongs to them, the Post of Zambia reported on Tuesday. Kaunda — who is a special envoy of the organisation whose membership is drawn from political parties in Africa — said the creation of the organisation had the potential to strengthen and help Africa and humanity work together for the good of the continent.
“As a believer of pan-Africanism, I am a well-wisher of African people to actively working together for the good of the continent and humanity,” he was quoted as saying by the paper during the organisation’s inaugural executive meeting in the Zambian capital, Lusaka.
The 89-year-old former leader also said it was time for African countries to come together and renew their commitment to fostering unity and justice.
“We must come forward with united strength and claim this century as Africans.
“With your renewed commitment to foster unity and justice, you are able to redress injustices suffered by the African people as a result of local and external factors,” he added.
Dr Kaunda said Africa was today able to face the world as a continent capable of leading itself to prosperity. “We are a friendly people, strong in our cultures. We can interact with others in humility, dignity and yet remain in strength. We should not let the dominant adulterate the values of humanity. We should be wary of ethnic, tribal and religious divisions that are linked to instability of these challenges that threaten development,” he said.
Meanwhile, a coalition of African political parties said yesterday that the International Criminal Court is a tool targeted at African leaders for regime change.
— Xinhua/Post of Zambia.
Participants in the heads-of-state gathering of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) which met in Lilongwe, Malawi on August 17 and 18, 2013., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Communique of 33rd Summit of Sadc Heads of State & Govt
August 21, 2013 Opinion & Analysis
SADC leaders COMMUNIQUÉ OF THE 33RD SUMMIT OF Sadc HEADS OF STATE AND GOVERNMENT LILONGWE, MALAWI: AUGUST 17-18, 2013.
1. The 33rd Summit of the Heads of State and Government of the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) was held in Lilongwe, Republic of Malawi on 17th and 18th August 2013.
2. Summit elected H.E. President Joyce Banda of the Republic of Malawi and H.E Robert Gabriel Mugabe, President of the Republic of Zimbabwe as Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of Sadc, respectively.
3. Summit also elected H.E. President Hifikepunye Pohamba of the Republic of Namibia and Right Honourable Thomas Motsoahae Thabane, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Lesotho as Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of the Sadc Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation, respectively.
4. Summit was attended by the following Heads of State and Government and or their representatives:
Botswana: H.E. President Lt. Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama
DRC: H.E. President Joseph Kabila Kabange
Lesotho: Rt. Hon. Prime Minister Thomas Motsoahae Thabane
Malawi: H.E. President Joyce Banda
Mauritius : The Rt. Honourable Dr Navinchandra Ramgoolam,
Prime Minister Mozambique: H.E. President Armando Emilio Guebuza
South Africa: H.E. President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma
United Republic: H.E. President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete of Tanzania
Zimbabwe: H.E. President Robert Gabriel Mugabe
Angola: Rt Honourable Manuel Vicente, Vice President
Namibia: Honourable Marco Hausiku, Deputy Prime Minister
Seychelles: Rt Honourable Danny Faure, Vice President
Swaziland: Rt Honourable Dr. Sibusiso Barnabas Dlamini,
Prime Minister: Zambia: His Honour Dr Guy Scott, Vice President
5. Summit was also attended by H.E. Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Chairperson of the African Union Commission, (AUC) and H.E. Dr Tomaz Augusto Salomão, Sadc Executive Secretary. In attendance were also H.E. Mr Sindiso Ndema Ngwenya, Secretary General of the Common Market for East and Southern Africa (Comesa);
H.E. Amb Dr Richard Sezibera, Secretary General of the East African Community (EAC); and Dr Esau M. Chiviya, Secretary General of the Sadc Parliamentary Forum.
6. H.E. President Joyce Banda, Sadc Chairperson and host of the 33rd Summit welcomed the Sadc Heads of State and Government and other delegates to the Republic of Malawi. President Banda paid tribute to the outgoing Chairperson of SADC, H.E. President Armando Emilio Guebuza of Mozambique for having provided leadership to the Region. She indicated that her chairpersonship shall focus on poverty reduction and sustainable food production, among other things.
7. The Outgoing Sadc Chairperson, H.E. President Armando Emilio Guebuza of Mozambique, commended Sadc Heads of State and Government, the entire Region, and International Cooperating Partners (ICPs) for the support rendered to him during his tenure as Chairperson. President Guebuza pledged to support President Banda and appealed to all Member States to accord Malawi their usual support as she assumes the responsibility of spearheading the Sadc regional integration agenda.
8. In her acceptance statement, the new Sadc Chairperson and host of the 33rd Ordinary Sadc Summit, H.E. President Banda indicated that Malawi accepts the chairpersonship of Sadc with humility, national pride and a sense of responsibility and shall continue to count on all Sadc Member States for assistance to accelerate the implementation and realisation of the Sadc regional integration agenda.
9. Summit was also addressed by H.E. Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the AUC Chairperson who commended Sadc Member States for the progress made in regional integration. She undertook to ensure that the AUC continues to render support to Sadc Member States in order to realize peace and stability, economic and socio-political development in the region leading to the improvement of the quality of lives of the people of the Region.
10. Summit received the Report of the Outgoing Chairperson of Sadc, H.E. President Armando Emilio Guebuza of the Republic of Mozambique, outlining activities carried out during his tenure of offices on the social, political and economic spheres in the Region, which included investment promotion, resource mobilisation and peace and political stability.
11. Summit commended His Excellency President Armando Emilio Guebuza for his efforts in promoting investment, mobilising resources for the Region and raising the visibility and profile of Sadc.
12. Summit received the Report of the Outgoing Chairperson of the Sadc Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Co-operation, H.E. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, President of the United Republic of Tanzania. Summit noted that the Region remained generally peaceful and stable. Summit commended H.E. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete for successfully steering the Sadc Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Co-operation.
13. On DRC, Summit welcomed the deployment of the Sadc Intervention Brigade in the DRC to contain the deteriorating security and humanitarian situation in the eastern part of the country. Summit commended the signing of the Peace, Security and Co-operation Framework for the DRC and the Region in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on 24 February 2013 and the adoption of by the UN Security Council of Resolution 2098 of 2013 which provides the mandate for the deployment of the Intervention Brigade in eastern DRC under the auspices of MONUSCO.
14. Summit commended the Kampala Talks between the Government of the DRC and M23 and noted that the Talks have become protracted and that, at some point, a reasonable deadline should be considered.
15. Summit urged all Congolese stakeholders to participate in the all inclusive national consultations in the country in order to find a lasting political solution.
16. Summit emphasized the need to hold an urgent joint Summit of Sadc and the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region.
17. On Madagascar, Summit welcomed the establishment of the Special Electoral Court of Madagascar which would pave the way for the holding of free, fair and credible elections in the country.
18. Summit noted with satisfaction the positive developments unfolding in Madagascar, especially with regard to the decision of the newly formed Special Electoral Court to withdraw nine Presidential candidates from the presidential race. Out of the nine candidates, the three namely, Mr. Andry Rajoelina, Mrs Lalao Ravalomanana and Mr. Didier Ratsiraka are also included.
19. While congratulating the Special Electoral Court for its bold decision, Summit urged the Court to speed up the process of holding elections in the country.
20. Summit commended H.E Joaquim Chissano, former President of the Republic of Mozambique and Sadc Mediator on Madagascar as well as H.E. Ambassador R. Lamambra, Commissioner for Peace and Security of the AU Commission for their relentless and fruitful efforts to bring Madagascar back to constitutional normalcy.
21. On Zimbabwe, Summit noted with satisfaction the holding of free and peaceful harmonised elections on July 31, 2013.
Summit commended the Government and people of Zimbabwe for the peaceful manner in which elections were conducted. Summit congratulated the Zanu-PF party and President Robert G. Mugabe for winning the harmonised elections. Summit reiterated its call for the lifting of all forms of sanctions hitherto imposed on Zimbabwe.
22. Summit commended H.E. President Gedleyihlekisa Zuma and his team for their sterling job in facilitating the successful completion of the Global Political Agreement.
23. Summit expressed its deep concern at the removal of the constitutionally elected government in Egypt which has resulted in an escalation of violence and condemned all acts of violence from whichever side it emanates.
Summit deplored the loss of human lives and destruction of property. It called on all parties to exercise maximum restraint and begin the process of inclusive dialogue and reconciliation and to urgently work towards the return of constitutional normalcy. It expressed support for the efforts of the African Union Commission and the AU High Level Panel comprising former President Alpha Oumar Konare of Mali as Chair, former President Festus Mogae of Botswana and former Prime Minister Dileita Mohammed Dileita of Djibouti. Finally, Summit expressed its solidarity with the entire people of Egypt in this challenging and sad chapter of their national history.
24. Summit noted with concern that the economic performance of the Region had slightly deteriorated, largely due to the economic and financial slow down in industrialised countries, in particular in the Eurozone.
25. Summit received a report from the Ministerial task Force on Regional Economic Integration outlining progress made on the Sadc regional economic integration agenda and reiterated its commitment to the establishment of the Tripartite Free Trade Area. Summit noted the finalisation of the Industrial Development Policy Framework for the region.
26. Summit reviewed the status of the implementation of the Regional Infrastructure Development Master Plan (RIDMP) adopted in 2012, and noted progress made in marketing of the infrastructure projects elaborated by the Master Plan through infrastructure investment conferences held within the region and abroad. Summit also commended the Republic of Mozambique for successfully organising and hosting the Sadc Regional Infrastructure Investment Conference in June 2013.
27. Summit reviewed the Regional food security situation, in particular cereal, non cereal, livestock and fisheries production, and noted that the Region will experience slight increases in these products. Summit thus urged Member States to scale-up the implementation of measures to increase agricultural production, reduce post-harvest losses and improve the overall food and nutrition security in line with Dar-es-Salaam Declaration on Agriculture and Food Security.
28. Summit noted progress in the implementation of the Maseru Declaration of 2003 on combating HIV and Aids, in particular, the reduction of new infections and decline in Aids related deaths.
Summit urged Member States to continue intensifying the mobilisation of domestic resources to ensure sustainable financing for scaling up HIV and Aids interventions.
29. Summit noted progress on the status of women representation in political and decision making positions in Sadc Member States. Summit further commended Member States that have achieved high representation of women in political and decision making positions, and urged those that have not yet reached the target to do so.
30. Summit urged Member States to participate fully in the 20th UNWTO General Assembly to be co-hosted by Zambia and Zimbabwe in Livingstone and Victoria Falls during the last week of August, 2013.
31. Summit appointed H.E. Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax from the United Republic of Tanzania to the position of Sadc Executive Secretary.
32. Summit commended the Outgoing Executive Secretary H.E. Dr Tomaz Augusto Salomão, for his outstanding contribution and remarkable achievements during his tenure of office and wished him well in his future endeavours.
33. Summit mandated the Council of Ministers to conclude the process of the appointment of Deputy Executive Secretary, Regional Integration by the end of October 2013.
34. Summit expressed its appreciation to the Government and people of Malawi for hosting the Summit and for the warm hospitality extended to all the delegates.
35. Summit was officially closed by Sadc Chairperson, H.E. President Joyce Banda of the Republic of Malawi.
36. The Deputy Chairperson of Summit, H.E. Robert Gabriel Mugabe, President of the Republic of Zimbabwe invited the Heads of State and Government and all delegates to the next summit to be held in Zimbabwe in August 2014. Done in Lilongwe, Malawi. August 18, 2013.
Commandant Gen. Jim Amos, visits the U.S. embassy compound in Tripoli, Libya, on June 16, 2013. He is speaking with a member of 4th Force Reconnaissance Company., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Libya Plans to Reopen Some Oil Export Terminals
By Mariam Sami, Saleh Sarrar and Maher Chmaytelli - Aug 20, 2013
Libya prepared to open some oil ports closed by labor unrest, as the government vied with guards for control of export facilities. The country’s navy said it would seize any tankers attempting illicit shipments.
The ports of Zueitina and Hariga are ready to resume exports, Ibrahim Al Awami, an oil ministry official, said today from Hariga. Another port, Brega, was operational as of today, a union representative said. Among other terminals, the country’s largest, Es Sider, remains closed. Earlier, the navy said it will forcibly escort back to port any vessel carrying the nation’s crude without authorization, according to a statement carried by the Libyan News Agency.
Brent crude has risen 3.5 percent this month amid the turmoil in Libya, the holder of Africa’s biggest reserves, and disruptions in Iraq and Nigeria. Libya’s production has fallen to less than half the level pumped before the 2011 uprising against Muammar Qaddafi as protests by the Petroleum Facilities Guard, or PFG, for better working conditions has hurt exports.
“A more severe or longer Libyan disruption would be more bullish,” said Mike Wittner, head of oil research for the Americas at Societe Generale SA in New York. “Our base case assumption is that the current strike and current level of disruptions will be over by October.”
A tanker is waiting to load at Hariga, Al Awami, director of the Oil Ministry’s inspection and measurement department, said. The Greek-flagged Hellas Warrior, an Aframax crude oil tanker owned by Polembros Shipping Ltd., is outside the port, vessel-tracking data compiled by Bloomberg show. Storage tanks at the port are full, according to an oil ministry official who asked not to be identified, citing policy.
National Oil Corp. may lift its force majeure on exports of crude and refined products from Es Sider, Ras Lanuf, Zueitina and Brega by the end of the week with the resolution of the strikes, said Al Awami. Local residents expelled members of the Petroleum Facilities Guard who had been holding a sit-in at Zueitina, he said. Es Sider, the largest of Libya’s oil terminals with a capacity of 350,000 barrels a day, has been shut since July 28.
Naval vessels patrolling waters around Es Sider, Ras Lanuf and Brega will search all ships anchored in Libyan waters and return tankers without clearance to port, according to the navy’s statement on LANA.
The navy will end the “illegal presence” of unauthorized vessels and “prevent them from shipping Libyan crude unless there are legal contracting procedures with the National Oil Corp.,” LANA quoted the navy as saying. Prime Minister Ali Zaidan has warned that ships docking illegally at Libyan ports may be removed or bombed.
The force majeure, a legal clause that excuses the seller from making deliveries because of events beyond its control, was applied on Aug. 18, according to a National Oil Corp. document signed by Chairman Nuri Berruien and obtained by Bloomberg News.
Libya produced 800,000 barrels of crude a day last month, down from 1.6 million a day one year earlier, according to a monthly Bloomberg survey. The labor dispute is crippling the government’s main source of revenue, costing at least $1.6 billion, Oil Minister Abdulbari Al-Arusi told reporters in Tripoli on Aug. 15.
While Es Sider and Ras Lanuf remained closed today, another port, Zawiya, has remained open amid closures elsewhere, and the terminals of Brega and Hariga “entered duty today,” Jamal Ben Zuglam, a coordinator of the oil and gas workers union, said today by phone from Tripoli.
Refiners around the Mediterranean Sea are seeking crude from Nigeria to replace Libyan crude because it’s similar in quality, pushing up freight costs between the two locations, JBC Energy GmbH, a consultant based in Vienna, said in a report.
To contact the reporters on this story: Mariam Sami in Cairo at email@example.com; Saleh Sarrar in Hariga, Libya at firstname.lastname@example.org; Maher Chmaytelli in Dubai at email@example.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Voss at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ground troops from the US-backed AMISOM forces enter the town of Wanlaweyn in Somalia. The country has 17,000 troops occupying the Horn of Africa state on behalf of the Pentagon and NATO., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Somalia vows action over alleged rape by AU troops
Publish Date: Aug 22, 2013
NAIROBI - Somalia's government vowed Wednesday to deliver justice in the case of a local woman who alleged she was gang raped by African Union troops and Somali soldiers.
"My team and I are committed to getting to the bottom of this case, and all other allegations of sexual violence," Somalia's minster for human development, Maryan Qasim, said in a statement Wednesday.
"We want perpetrators of crimes to be brought to justice and to build a society where the rights of every citizen are protected."
Qasim, the head of a government team probing the case, distanced herself from an audio recording in Somali media in which she appeared to angrily criticise rape victims for publicising their cases in the press.
Instead, she said she had been "misquoted and misrepresented", and that she had instead been stressing the need to "protect each and every rape victim's identity".
"Rape in all its forms is totally unacceptable," Qasim added. "The government cannot tolerate such incidents, no one should be allowed to violate the rights of Somali women."
Late last week a Somali woman alleged she was kidnapped by three soldiers from the national army, blindfolded and forced into a car, before being handed over to African Union troops to be repeatedly raped.
The unnamed woman, in her late 20s with a young baby, told Somali media that she was unconscious during the attack and says she does not know how many men raped her.
AMISOM, the 17,700-strong United Nations-mandated force that supports the government in its fight against Al-Qaeda-linked Shebab insurgents, said it has launched an investigation together with the Somali army.
AMISOM, fighting since 2007 in Somalia and funded by the UN and European Union, insists it "strongly condemns ... sexual abuse or exploitation".
The force is mainly made up of troops from Uganda, Burundi and Kenya, with smaller numbers from Djibouti and Sierra Leone.
President Farole of Puntland was welcomed in Somalia during a visit in late November 2012. Puntland is a breakaway region in northern Somalia., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
SOMALIA: Puntland Government Statement on New Deal Framework
ON AUGUST 22, 2013
Puntland Government welcomes the New Deal Conference for Somalia, hosted by the European Union in Brussels on September 16, 2013, as the New Deal provides the guiding framework for working partnerships in fragile and conflict-affected States.
Puntland recognizes the importance of the New Deal Framework, signed in Busan on November 29, 2011 in accordance with other international accords including the Paris Declaration and the Dili Declaration. The New Deal is a country-owned and led process that brings structural change to Aid Effectiveness in Fragile States and seeks clear roles and responsibilities for the affected States receiving the aid, in collaboration with Donor Communities and Development Partners.
Underscoring Puntland’s commitment, a Puntland ministerial delegation attended the New Deal signing event in Busan, South Korea, and a Puntland ministerial delegation also attended the New Deal for Somalia launch event, held in Mogadishu on May 14 and chaired by Somali Prime Minister H.E. Abdi Farah Shirdon.
Puntland will attend the New Deal Conference provided that it is given a special arrangement, in light of political divides in Somalia, Puntland’s decision on August 5 to suspend relations with Federal Government of Somalia (FGS), and Puntland’s obligations to uphold its constitutional rights and privileges enshrined in the Provisional Federal Constitution (PFC) of Somalia.
The Government has nominated a Technical Committee consisting of government officials, academics, experts, and lawyers – chaired by Puntland Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation – to coordinate with international partners and g7+.
The Technical Committee is preparing a Critical Priorities Document in line with Peace-building and State-building Goals to be a component incorporated into New Deal Compact for Somalia and the Document will be finalized after engaging in wide consultations with representatives from public and private sectors and civil society.
Source: Puntland State Government
Al-Shabab rally in Somalia where the U.S.-backed Transitional Federal Government is being proped up by the western-funded AMISOM military forces composed largely of Ugandan and Burundian troops., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Somalia gunmen kill two, wound Swedish woman in likely kidnap attempt
Wed, Aug 21 2013
By Abdalle Ahmed
MOGADISHU (Reuters) - Gunmen killed two men and wounded two women, including a Swede, in Somalia's capital Mogadishu on Wednesday when they ambushed a car in what police believe may have been an attempted kidnap.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility. However, al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab militants have kept up guerrilla-style attacks and kidnappings in the city despite being largely pushed out by Somali and African forces two years ago.
Witnesses said the Swede going back to her hotel after giving a speech at the University of Somalia when the gunmen struck near the Turkish embassy.
Student Ahmed Dek said the Swedish woman flung open the rear door of the car and ran under a hail of bullets towards the university. She was bleeding badly from her left side, he said.
A police officer guarding the Swedish woman and a Somali man said to be her translator were killed, police said. A Somali woman from Sweden was also wounded.
Bile Ibrahim, of the criminal investigation department, said police were investigating a possible attempted kidnap.
The Swedish Foreign Ministry confirmed a Swedish woman had been shot and injured and said it was investigating the circumstances of the attack.
The ministry said preparations were under way to move her to Kenya after treatment in Mogadishu. A spokesman for the U.N. hospital there said her wounds were not life threatening.
Somalia has a new elected government that has been in charge for about a year and is attempting to rebuild itself after two decades of civil war and lawlessness, triggered by the overthrow of president Siad Barre in 1991.
Last week, a medical charity that was a lifeline for hundreds of thousands of Somalis announced it was pulling out of the country, saying the threat of deadly violence had become intolerable.
(Additional reporting by Anna Ringstrom in Stockholm; Writing by James Macharia; Editing by Alison Williams)
Edward Snowden support demonstration at the United States embassy in Hong Kong. The FBI says it will pursue Snowden for revealing that the National Security Agency is spying on billions around the world., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
August 21, 2013
Secret Court Rebuked N.S.A. on Surveillance
By CHARLIE SAVAGE and SCOTT SHANE
New York Times
WASHINGTON — A federal judge sharply rebuked the National Security Agency in 2011 for repeatedly misleading the court that oversees its surveillance on domestic soil, including a program that is collecting tens of thousands of domestic e-mails and other Internet communications of Americans each year, according to a secret ruling made public on Wednesday.
The 85-page ruling by Judge John D. Bates, then serving as chief judge on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, involved an N.S.A. program that systematically searches the contents of Americans’ international Internet communications, without a warrant, in a hunt for discussions about foreigners who have been targeted for surveillance.
The Justice Department had told Judge Bates that N.S.A. officials had discovered that the program had also been gathering domestic messages for three years. Judge Bates found that the agency had violated the Constitution and declared the problems part of a pattern of misrepresentation by agency officials in submissions to the secret court.
The release of the ruling, the subject of a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, was the latest effort by the Obama administration to gain control over revelations about N.S.A. surveillance prompted by leaks by the former agency contractor Edward J. Snowden.
The collection is part of a broader program under a 2008 law that allows warrantless surveillance on domestic networks as long as it is targeted at noncitizens abroad. The purely domestic messages collected in the hunt for discussions about targeted foreigners represent a relatively small percentage of what the ruling said were 250 million communications intercepted each year in that broader program.
While the N.S.A. fixed problems with how it handled those purely domestic messages to the court’s satisfaction, the 2011 ruling revealed further issues.
“The court is troubled that the government’s revelations regarding N.S.A.’s acquisition of Internet transactions mark the third instance in less than three years in which the government has disclosed a substantial misrepresentation regarding the scope of a major collection program,” Judge Bates wrote.
One of the examples, was redacted in the ruling. Another involved a separate N.S.A. program that keeps logs of all domestic phone calls, which the court approved in 2006 and which came to light in June as a result of leaks by Mr. Snowden.
In March 2009, a footnote said, the surveillance court learned that N.S.A. analysts were using the phone log database in ways that went beyond what the judges believed to be the practice because of a “repeated inaccurate statements” in government filings to the court.
“Contrary to the government’s repeated assurances, N.S.A. had been routinely running queries of the metadata using querying terms that did not meet the standard for querying,” Judge Bates recounted. He cited a 2009 ruling that concluded that the requirement had been “so frequently and systematically violated that it can fairly be said that this critical element of the overall ... regime has never functioned effectively.”
The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a free speech and privacy rights group, sued to obtain the ruling after Senator Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat who sits on the Senate Intelligence Committee, fought last summer to declassify the basic fact that the surveillance court had ruled that the N.S.A. had violated the Fourth Amendment.
In a statement, Mr. Wyden — an outspoken critic of N.S.A. surveillance — said declassification of the ruling was “long overdue.” He argued that while the N.S.A. had increased privacy protections for purely domestic and unrelated communications that were swept up in the surveillance, the collection itself “was a serious violation of the Fourth Amendment.”
Mark Rumold of the Electronic Frontier Foundation praised the administration for releasing the document with relatively few redactions, although he criticized the time and the difficulty in obtaining it. But he also said the ruling showed the surveillance court was not equipped to perform adequate oversight of the N.S.A.
“This opinion illustrates that the way the court is structured now it cannot serve as an effective check on the N.S.A. because it’s wholly dependent on the representations that the N.S.A. makes to it,” Mr. Rumold said. “It has no ability to investigate. And it’s clear that the N.S.A. representations have not been entirely candid to the court.”
A senior intelligence official, speaking to reporters in a conference call, portrayed the ruling as showing that N.S.A. oversight was robust and serious. He said that some 300 N.S.A. employees were assigned to seek out even inadvertent violations of the rules and that the court conducted “vigorous” oversight.
The ruling focused on a program under which the N.S.A. has been searching domestic Internet links for communications — where at least one side is overseas — in which there are “strong selectors” indicating insider knowledge of someone who has been targeted for foreign-intelligence collection. One example would be mentioning a person’s private e-mail address in the body of an e-mail.
Most of the time, the system brings up single communications, like an e-mail or text message. But sometimes many messages are packaged and travel in a bundle that the N.S.A. calls “multi-communication transactions.”
A senior intelligence official gave one example: a Web page for a private e-mail in-box that displays subject lines for dozens of different messages — each of which is considered a separate communication, and only one of which may discuss the person who has been targeted for intelligence collection.
While Judge Bates ruled that it was acceptable for the N.S.A. to collect and store such bundled communications, he said the agency was not doing enough to minimize the purely domestic and unrelated messages to protect Americans’ privacy. In response, the N.S.A. agreed to filter out such communications and store them apart, with greater protections, and to delete them after two years instead of the usual five.
A Justice Department “white paper” released with the ruling shed new light on N.S.A. surveillance of communications streaming across domestic telecommunications networks. Such “upstream” collection, which still must be targeted at or be about noncitizens abroad, accounts for about 10 percent of all the Internet messages collected in the United States, it said; the other 90 percent are obtained from Internet companies under the system the N.S.A. calls Prism.
The administration also released a partly redacted semiannual report about “compliance” incidents, or mistakes involving the privacy rights of Americans or people in the United States. It found that there had been no willful violations of the rules, and that fewer than 1 percent of queries by analysts involved errors.
The document also showed that the government recently changed the rules to allow N.S.A. and C.I.A. analysts to search its databases of recorded calls and e-mails using search terms designed to find information involving American citizens, not foreigners — an issue that has long concerned Senator Wyden and that was mentioned in a document leaked by Mr. Snowden and published by The Guardian.
The number of “selectors” designed to filter out and store communications targeted at foreigners had gone up steadily, the document said, although the numbers were redacted. And its increase is expected to “accelerate” because the F.B.I. recently made the ability to nominate people for such collection “more widely available to its field office personnel.”
The longest rail line in the world was opened by China on December 26, 2012. China is making new advancements in technology and industry., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
August 21, 2013
Chinese Manufacturing Sector Unexpectedly Grows
By BETTINA WASSENER
HONG KONG — A closely-watched survey of manufacturing-sector activity in China on Thursday provided the latest indication that the world’s second-largest economy appears to have bottomed out after many months of slowing growth.
The early reading of the monthly purchasing managers’ index, compiled by the research firm Markit and released by the British bank HSBC, jumped to 50.1 points in August, from 47.7 in July, and easily beat analyst expectations. The increase, to a four-month high, also took the reading to just above 50 – the level that separates contraction and expansion.
The HSBC P.M.I. for China offers one of the earliest indications each month of how the economy is doing, and Thursday’s reading is likely to solidify expectations that a stabilization that had begun to show through in July has continued into August.
“It confirms that the economy has stabilized in the short term,” Zhang Zhiwei, China economist at Nomura in Hong Kong, wrote in an e-mailed commentary, adding that the downside risks for the second half of this year had declined.
A string of government measures aimed at supporting activity appears to have helped put a floor under the economy. The authorities have announced tax breaks for small businesses and steps aimed at speeding up railway construction in inland and poor areas, for example.
Longer-term, the gradual reacceleration of the U.S. economy could help improve demand for Chinese exports, analysts believe.
For now, however, the improvement in China’s prospects appears to have been largely driven by domestic demand, Mr. Zhang said, pointing to the fact that Thursday’s PMI showed new export orders still declining, but overall new orders picking up sharply.
Bo Xilai, Neil Heywood and Gu Kailai. Gu confessed to the murder of Heywood in a August 2012 trial in China., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
China's Bo appears in public, denies a bribery charge
By John Ruwitch
JINAN, China (Reuters) - Fallen Chinese politician Bo Xilai denied one of the bribery charges against him on Thursday as he appeared in public for the first time in more than a year to face China's most political trial in over three decades.
Bo, the 64-year-old former Communist Party chief of the southwestern city of Chongqing, has been charged with bribery, corruption and abuse of power and will almost certainly be found guilty. But his denial of one of the charges could mean that he will not go quietly.
President Xi Jinping, who wants to rebalance the world's second-biggest economy, will be keen to put the trial behind him with a minimum of fuss to ensure stability and party unity. Bo's downfall has pitted supporters of his Maoist-themed egalitarian social programs against the capitalist-leaning economic road taken by the leadership, exposing divisions within the ruling party as well as Chinese society.
His trial in the eastern city of Jinan marks the culmination of China's biggest political scandal since the 1976 downfall of the Gang of Four at the end of the Cultural Revolution.
Appearing somber, a clean-shaven Bo, whose hair looked like it was still dyed black, stood in the dock without handcuffs, according to a picture issued by the court. He was dressed in a long-sleeved white shirt and stood with his hands crossed in front of him, flanked by two policemen.
"Regarding the matter of Tang Xiaolin giving me money three times, I once admitted it against my will during the Central Discipline Inspection Commission's investigation against me," Bo said, referring to the party's top anti-graft body.
"(I'm) willing to bear the legal responsibilities, but at that time I did not know the circumstances of these matters, my mind was a blank."
State television said Bo did not contest the evidence shown in court.
Bo was charged with receiving about 21.8 million yuan ($3.56 million) in bribes from Xu Ming, a plastics-to-property entrepreneur who is a close friend, and Tang Xiaolin, the general manager of Hong Kong-based export company Dalian International Development Ltd, the court said.
He received the bribes through his wife, Gu Kailai, and his son, Bo Guagua, it said, citing the indictment.
It was the first time that authorities had named the younger Bo in the case against his father. Guagua is now in the United States, pursuing a law degree at Columbia University.
Bo's language suggests that he could fight the charges against him, and the court account did not say whether he had or would plead guilty to any of the charges.
A guilty plea would almost certainly signal he has worked out a deal for leniency, but he is likely to plead not guilty to the abuse of power charge to show that he is a victim of a power struggle, according to a source with ties to the leadership.
Court spokesman Liu Yanjie told reporters that Bo was "emotionally stable and physically healthy" during the trial.
"The court session proceeded in an orderly fashion," he said.
Bo's trial will last for two days and the verdict is likely to be in early September, state broadcaster CCTV said.
The Jinan Intermediate Court said on its microblog feed that five of Bo's family members and 19 journalists attended the hearing. In another picture published by the court, Bo's siblings appeared to be in court. The court said over 100 people filled the courtroom.
Underscoring popular support for Bo, a handful of supporters protested outside the courthouse for a second day to denounce what they said was politically motivated persecution. Police, who had blocked off the courthouse, hustled them away.
One protester's sign read: "The Chongqing experience is good for the country and the people, common prosperity is what the people want". Another held up a photo of Mao Zedong.
Bo also embezzled 5 million yuan from a government project in the northeastern city of Dalian, where he served as mayor, the court said.
The charge of abuse of power against Bo relates to the murder case involving Gu, the court said. Bo was a rising star in China's leadership circles when his career was stopped short last year by the murder scandal involving Gu, who was convicted of the November 2011 murder of British businessman Neil Heywood, a business partner and family friend.
Bo's former police chief in Chongqing, Wang Lijun, has also been jailed for trying to cover up the case. Bo was furious with Wang when he was told that his wife was a murder suspect, and sacked him despite not having party authority to do so, sources with knowledge of the case have said.
Neither did he report the matter to his bosses in Beijing, all of which led to the abuse of power charge, they said.
"Bo violated regulations to block the investigation of the murder in which Bogu Kailai was a suspect," said court spokesman Liu, using Gu's official but rarely used name.
Nevertheless he has been seen by his backers as the victim of a power struggle.
Bo's downfall has triggered heated debate between his leftist followers, who are nostalgic for the revolutionary ideals of the Mao Zedong era, and reformers, who advocate faster political and economic change.
Bo could face a death sentence for his charges, though a suspended death sentence is more likely, which effectively means life imprisonment, or a 20-year term.
The trial will be watched as a test case of China's commitment to the rule of law, especially whether Bo will be given a chance to defend himself.
Yet his guilt is an almost foregone conclusion given that prosecutors and courts come under Communist Party control. Courts have a 98 percent conviction rate.
The new administration of President Xi, who formally took the reins of state power in March, will likely trumpet Bo's case as a success in its fight against deep-rooted corruption. ($1 = 6.1234 Chinese yuan)
(Additional reporting by Judy Hua in JINAN and Sui-Lee Wee, Hui Li and Ben Blanchard in BEIJING, Writing by Sui-Lee Wee; Editing by Ben Blanchard, Ron Popeski and Raju Gopalakrishnan)
Michael Sata, the president of the Southern African nation of Zambia, won office in a stunning result from the national polls. Sata heads the Patriotic Front Party which defeated Rupiah Banda., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Bleeding Zambia Dry
By Thomas C. Mountain
In the past decade the central African country of Zambia has exported some $30 billion of copper yet remains so deeply in debt to western banksters that it spends more in interest on Zambia’s debt that on health and education combined.
Every month for the past ten years some $250 million of Zambian copper has been sold to...Switzerland? And guess what, Switzerland which doesn’t import any real, physical copper, is one of the biggest copper buyers in the world. It’s all about the “circle jerk”, an African based company “selling” it’s metal to its own sister company in Switzerland for dirt cheap, the better to pay fewer taxes to African governments.
Of the $250 million a month that Zambia’s copper ultimately sells for the Zambian government may be getting between $8-10 million. But the story doesn't end there, for the government is contractually bound to provide massive amounts of cheap electricity to the western owned copper mines all the while much of Zambia remains in the dark, literally or paying through the nose to make up for what is given away to the mines.
The infrastructure in Zambia was almost entirely funded by the government, which meant going deeply into debt to the International Misery Fund (IMF). And when copper prices crashed in the past the IMF was there for “emergency assistance”, providing a glucose infusion in one arm while taking whole blood from the other.
The result? Every year thousands of Zambian children die from preventable causes such as malaria and water born diseases along side a host of malnutrition related sicknesses. Never mind the environmental damage and long term poisonings from the copper mines.
The Zambian people have grown so fed up that they elected a white Zambian vice president to see if they could some how cut a better deal, or at least get paid their legal due though even he has thrown up his hands in helplessness and its still business as usual as in bleeding Zambia dry.
Thomas C. Mountain is the most widely distributed independent journalist in Africa, living and reporting from Eritrea since 2006. He can be reached at thomascmountain_at_yahoo_dot_com_
Syrian Permanent Representative to the United Nations Mission Dr. Bashara al-Jaafari listening to the attacks being made on his country by the special envoy Kofi Annan and Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. Syria is under threat of imperialist regime-change., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Foreign Ministry: Allegations of armed forces using toxic gas in Damascus countryside untrue
Aug 22, 2013
Damascus, (SANA) – An official spokesman at the Foreign and Expatriates Ministry said that the cooperation agreement between Syria and the international committee for investigating the use of weapons of mass destruction in some areas in Syria didn't please the terrorists and the countries supporting them, which is why they came up with new false allegations that the Armed Forces used toxic gas in Damascus Countryside.
The spokesman said that the Foreign and Expatriates Ministry affirms that these allegations are false and untrue, and that the Ministry would like to point out that Syria has repeatedly announced that it will never use any weapons of mass destruction against its own people, if such weapons exist.
The spokesman said that these lies and allegations have become well-known to the Syrian government and people, and that the allegations constitute an attempt to prevent the international investigation committee from carrying outs its task and to influence the committee's report.
Syrian armed forces have made progress in recent months against the assaults by U.S.-backed counter-revolutionary combatants. The imperialists are backing the rebels., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Iran: If chemical weapons were used, terrorist groups are to blame
Aug 22, 2013
Tehran, (SANA)- Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, said that the Syrian Government cannot be responsible for a possible chemical attack on Damascus Countryside.
"If the use of the chemical weapons is true, surely the armed terrorist groups are the one which used them as it was proved that they do not hesitate to commit any crime," Zarif added.
Meanwhile, Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs, Hussein Amir Abdullahian expressed astonishment over the talk about the Syrian army's use of chemical weapons in Damascus Countryside as it coincides with the start of the work of the UN investigation mission on the use of the chemical weapons in Syria.
In a statement to al-Mayadeen TV Channel, Abdullahyan said that the international community should prevent the use of the chemical weapons by the terrorists against the Syrian people after they used them in Khan al-Assal near Aleppo.
H. Zain/ F. Allafi
Bradley Manning has been indicted by the United States government for exposing war crimes being committed in Iraq by the Pentagon. He is being used as a scapegoat for the failure of the U.S. in the war., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Bradley Manning should be free
By Jesselyn Radack and Kathleen McClellan, Special to CNN
updated 6:02 PM EDT, Wed August 21, 2013
Army Pfc. Bradley Manning was convicted July 30 of stealing and disseminating 750,000 pages of classified documents and videos to WikiLeaks, and the counts against him included violations of the Espionage Act.
He was found guilty of 20 of the 22 charges but acquitted of the most serious charge, aiding the enemy. He was sentenced to 35 years in prison. Army Pfc. Bradley Manning was convicted July 30 of stealing and disseminating 750,000 pages of classified documents and videos to WikiLeaks, and the counts against him included violations of the Espionage Act. He was found guilty of 20 of the 22 charges but acquitted of the most serious charge, aiding the enemy. He was sentenced to 35 years in prison.
Writers: Pfc. Bradley Manning is one of the biggest whistleblowers in U.S. history
They say the public needs to know about the U.S. war crimes and torture he revealed
Manning should have been sentenced to the 3½ years he already served, they say
Writers: 35-year sentence reflects government's despotic desire to "send a message"
Editor's note: Jesselyn Radack is the national security and human rights director for the Government Acccountability Project, a nonprofit organization founded in 1977 to promote corporate and government accountability. She is the author of "Traitor: The Whistleblower and the American Taliban." Kathleen McClellan is the GAP national security and human rights counsel.
(CNN) -- Pfc. Bradley Manning is one of the biggest whistle-blowers in U.S. history, and his case is one of the Obama administration's unprecedented seven prosecutions against national security and intelligence whistleblowers. His disclosures to WikiLeaks revealed war crimes and torture -- topics that are surely in the public's interest to know.
The fact that the mainstream media around the world reprinted the bulk of his disclosures is evidence of the clear value in knowing what our government is doing.
Manning was sentenced to 35 years, but should have been sentenced to time served already: 3½ years, 112 days of which was improper pretrial detention, also known as torture. He suffered prolonged solitary confinement and was forced to be naked.
Bradley Manning apologizes in court Brian Manning's extended interview Bradley Manning verdict: Messages differ
Manning's trial was sparsely covered by the mainsteam media. The alternative media outlets who did cover the story comprehensively were faced with unprecedented secrecy, so much so that for months of pretrial proceedings, none of the court pleadings was publicly available. America should be better than secret courts and the criminalization of whistleblowing.
The military prosecutors asked the judge to lock Manning up for 60 years in order to "send a message." Sending a message has everything to do with politics and nothing to do with justice.
Although it was not the 60 years that the government asked for, Manning's 35-year sentence is still clearly intended to send a message for his conduct -- conduct that provided the public with evidence of clear wrongdoing and did no harm to the United States. The wrongdoers whose crimes Manning exposed enjoyed far gentler fates.
Like Manning, my whistleblower clients, former National Security Agency executive Thomas Drake, who exposed warrantless wiretapping; and former CIA officer John Kiriakou, who exposed his agency's use of torture, were charged under the Espionage Act. Unlike Manning, they were not convicted under that act, although Kiriakou is serving out a 30-month prison sentence. As in Manning's case, the only person to be truly punished was the whistleblower.
Drake and Kiriakou helped expose two of the biggest scandals of the post-9/11 era, yet they are the only two people criminally prosecuted in connection with them. The message is clear: It is safer for a government employee to violate the Fourth Amendment or to torture detainees or to gun down apparent civilians, as seen in the "Collateral Murder" video that Manning released to WikiLeaks.
(That classified video shows a United States Apache helicopter firing on a group of people in New Baghdad in 2007 who do not return fire. Two of those killed were Reuters' employees; two children were severely injured. An Army investigation found the crew followed the rules of engagement).
Manning's harsh sentence and the government's despotic desire to "send a message" represents yet another dismal step toward secrecy from a presidential administration that once pledged to be the "most transparent in history."
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Abayomi Azikiwe, editor of the Pan-African News Wire, makes a presentation during the MECAWI public meeting on the Palestine-Israeli Conflict. The event was held on January 31, 2009 in Detroit. (Photo: Alan Pollock), a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Real Voices of the 1963 March on Washington
Revisionist history has denied the struggle and programmatic thrust for jobs and freedom
By Abayomi Azikiwe
Editor, Pan-African News Wire
August 28, 1963 marks the 50th anniversary of that fateful day in Washington, D.C. when 300,000 people marched and rallied demanding jobs and freedom. Although in the corporate media this monumental historic event is often referenced, nonetheless, the actual march, the circumstances leading up to it and the organizations and personalities represented at the manifestation, have been largely lost in the public perception of people in the United States.
In typical fashion a brief 10 second clip is taken out of the final speech of the day delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. saying “I Have a Dream.” This was of course the greatest speech of that day summing up the mass sentiment of the people.
Other talks, however, addressed the demands of the movement which had grown out of decades of struggle for equality and self-determination of the African American people. Even important and key aspects of Dr. King’s speech require modern re-examination in light of the developments in 1963 as well as what is happening in 2013.
King noted that the U.S. government had given African Americans a bad check that has been sent back marked “insufficient funds.” He also illustrated how then Southern governors utilized “nullification and interposition” to block the enforcement of civil rights and labor laws.
A Historic Legacy of Mass Mobilization
Some 22 years prior to the 1963 march, A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin had planned a “March on Washington” demanding the end of segregation in the war industry which was building up ferociously in early 1941. Randolph, a Socialist organizer, labor tactician and newspaper editor, called for 10,000 to come to Washington on July 1, 1941.
The call for a “March on Washington” in 1941 prompted President Franklin D. Roosevelt to issue Executive Order 8802 which established the Fair Employment Practice Committee (FEPC) on June 25 just six days before the scheduled demonstration. After the executive action by Roosevelt the march was called off.
Although there were other ideas about calling for marches on Washington during the 1940s, none ever materialized. On May 17, 1957, the Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom was organized by Randolph and Rustin and supported by the newly-formed Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) headed by Dr. King. At the Lincoln Memorial gathering featured speakers included New York Congressman Adam Clayton Powell, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) executive secretary Roy Wilkins, Dr. King and gospel recording artist and Civil Rights Movement supporter Mahalia Jackson performed.
This rally was designed to support the Civil Rights Act of 1957 which empowered the Justice Department to pursue cases involving the suppression of the voting rights of African Americans. The event was attended by 25,000 people where Dr. King delivered one his first national speeches, this one entitled “Give Us the Ballot.”
After 1960, the Civil Rights Movement would take on a more mass character when the student sit-ins began in the South and the people of Fayette County, Tennessee tested the 1957 Civil Rights Act and began to register to vote provoking their evictions by white landowners. The student sit-ins and boycotts lead to the formation of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and the Fayette County struggle prompted the first Tent City of the period where African Americans camped out in opposition to their racist evictions.
Nonetheless, the events of the Spring and Summer of 1963 were critical in the introduction by President John F. Kennedy of yet another Civil Rights Bill in June of that year. The initiative was clearly a response to mass actions in Birmingham, Alabama, Cambridge, Maryland, Somerville, Tennessee, Danville, Virginia, Detroit , Michigan and other cities and rural areas across the country.
In Detroit on June 23, hundreds of thousands marched and rallied in the “Great Walk to Freedom” where Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech was first recorded and publicized by Motown Records. His Washington, D.C. version of the same address has gained greater exposure over the last five decades, but was not the first of such a talk.
Other key speakers at the March on Washington were John Lewis, Chairman of SNCC, whose speech was considered so militant that he was requested by the lead organizers to revise it. In the original draft it states that “We march today for jobs and freedom, but we have nothing to be proud of, for hundreds and thousands of our brothers are not here. They have no money for their transportation, for they are receiving starvation wages or no wages at all.
“In good conscience, we cannot support wholeheartedly the administration's civil rights bill, for it is too little and too late. There's not one thing in the bill that will protect our people from police brutality.”
Lewis also generated controversy when he stressed that “We are now involved in a serious revolution. This nation is still a place of cheap political leaders who build their careers on immoral compromises and ally themselves with open forms of political, economic and social exploitation. What political leader here can stand up and say, ‘My party is the party of principles?’ The party of Kennedy is also the party of Eastland. The party of Javits is also the party of Goldwater. Where is our party?”
Bayard Rustin, often recognized as the actual organizer of the March on Washington, read the demands of the gathering. These demands included that effective Civil Rights legislation be passed immediately with no compromises encompassing full voting rights, the withholding of federal funds to any local and state government that refuses to obey federal civil rights laws, the signing of an executive order ending housing discrimination, full employment, an increase in the minimum wages and other issues.
Women, Civil Rights and the March on Washington
Women played a leading role in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s. It was the arrest of Rosa Parks on December 1, 1955 for violating the segregation laws of Alabama that set off the Montgomery Bus Boycott.
Without the organizing work of the Women’s Political Caucus in Montgomery which printed the leaflets and circulated them telling people to refrain from riding the city buses, the boycott would have never been successful. Ella Baker, a long time organizer in the Civil Rights struggle was the first executive director of SCLC and would later encourage the youth to form their organization, SNCC, in order to ensure the militancy of their anti-segregation campaigns.
By 1963, women were playing leading roles in Cambridge, Maryland, Somerville, Tennessee and within the ranks of SNCC. Yet at the actual March on Washington, only one woman spoke to the crowd although others performed such as Mahalia Jackson, Marian Anderson and Joan Baez.
Dr. Dorothy Height of the National Council of Negro Women (NCNW) in New York was on hand but was not allowed to address the crowd. Mahalia Jackson, who had performed, encouraged King during his prepared speech to veer away after the gospel artist shouted “Tell them about your dream Martin.”
The only woman who spoke during the rally was film star and stage performer Josephine Baker who flew in from her adopted home of France to participate. Baker’s tenure in France largely resulted from the national discrimination facing African American artists in the U.S. during the 1920s and 1930s.
Baker told the crowd that “I have walked into the palaces of kings and queens and into the houses of presidents, and much more. But I could not walk into a hotel in America and get a cup of coffee, and that made me mad. And when I get mad, you know that I open my big mouth. And then look out, ’cause when Josephine opens her mouth, they hear it all over the world. . . .
“I am not a young woman now, friends. My life is behind me. There is not too much fire burning inside me. And before it goes out, I want you to use what is left to light the fire in you.”
After the demonstration Baker wrote to King saying “I was so happy to have been united with all of you on our great historical day. I repeat that you are really a great, great leader and if you need me I will always be at your disposition because we have come a long way but still have a way to go.” She signed the Aug. 31 letter, “Your great admirer and sister in battle.”
The full dimensions of the March on Washington need further exposure to the masses within the U.S. Even today in 2013 there is a need for a march for jobs and freedom.
Dr. W.E.B. Du Bois died on the same day that the March on Washington took place. His death was announced at the rally as well as an acknowledgment of his shift to the left in his latter decades.
Du Bois spanned the political spectrum from Civil Rights and Pan-Africanism to World Communism. All of these currents and their glorious histories have much to inform us about the struggle that we need to wage in the years to come.
Abayomi Azikiwe, editor of the Pan-African News Wire, at the Dr. Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit. The event was part of the Liberation Film Series on March 9, 2013. (Photo: Leona McElvene), a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
One Year After Marikana Tragedy in South Africa
Farlam Commission stalled while exploitative conditions continue
By Abayomi Azikiwe
Editor, Pan-African News Wire
South Africans have commemorated the first anniversary of the Marikana massacre where 34 mineworkers were shot dead by provincial police in Rustenburg. The miners had been on a wildcat (unprotected) strike that had been marked by violence between security forces and the workers as well as clashes involving rival labor unions.
2012 was one of the most intense years of class struggle since the fall of apartheid and the ascendancy of the African National Congress (ANC) to power in 1994. Both “protected” and “unprotected” industrial actions spread throughout the mining industry and other sectors of the national economy.
The source of the conflict within the platinum, gold, iron ore and other extractive sectors stemmed from the capitalist-owned and managed mining firms which are seeking to exploit the workers in order to gain higher rates of profit. Despite the realization of democracy in 1994, the wealth of South Africa is still largely controlled by the largely-white ruling class that is allied with multi-national corporations and financial institutions.
With the global capitalist system in the worse crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s, the bosses are demanding even deeper cuts and overall concessions from their employees. These contradictions came to the fore last August when workers were insisting upon huge pay raises, better working conditions and increased investment in the infrastructure of the mining towns.
Challenges Posed to the Working Class and National Democratic Movements
An alliance of the ANC along with the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) and the South African Communist Party (SACP) has served as the pillar of the post-apartheid society. Although this coalition of left and democratic forces led the anti-racist struggle and won state power for the representatives of the African majority and other oppressed nationalities, the masses yearn for full independence and control of the arable land and the means of industrial production.
Unrest in the mining sector along with agriculture, municipal services and manufacturing has worsened over the last year due to both internal and external factors. The decline in the value of the South African rand, the fluctuation of the prices for strategic minerals and the failure to significantly improve the working conditions of miners and their families created a highly explosive social situation in the country.
In a statement issued by the ANC ruling party it recognizes that “A year since Marikana happened, the African National Congress continues to mourn the lives of the striking miners, security guards and policemen who died during the most tragic unrest since the dawn the democracy. Our thoughts are with the many families, friends and colleagues who lost loved ones and whose lives were altered forever on those fateful days.”
COSATU, which is still the largest trade union federation inside South Africa, also issued a statement on August 15 noting “There was an overwhelming concern that never again must we see such killings in our democratic South Africa. Tragically however, one year later, we cannot say that there have been no further deaths. Just days before the anniversary, NUM woman shop steward, comrade Nobongile Madolo, was murdered near the Lonmin mine, the latest victim of a wave of politically motivated killings in the area around Rustenburg.”
The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) has been in a struggle with the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) over representation of workers in the North West Province around Rustenburg. At present at the Lonmin mines in Rustenburg AMCU is recognized as the majority union and has taken a hostile position towards the NUM.
COSATU expressed its frustration that the investigation into the violence in the North West mining industry which was mandated by the government of President Jacob Zuma has failed to address the fundamental issues leading up to developments in August 2012. A recent agreement signed by NUM and the mine owners to restructure the industry has not resulted in significant changes in working conditions.
This same statement continues “The 11th Congress (of COSATU) welcomed the Independent Judicial Commission of Inquiry appointed by the government to investigate all the events leading to that fateful day. It is therefore bitterly disappointing that one year later, the Farlam Commission is bogged down in procedural arguments and still far from reaching any conclusive verdict on why the massacre occurred, who was responsible or what measures are needed to prevent any occurrence.”
With specific reference to the intransigence of the mine owners, COSATU says it “welcomed the Framework Agreement for a Sustainable Mining Industry, signed by organized labor (with the exception of the National Confederation of Trade Unions (NACTU) and AMCU), organized business and government on 3 July 2013. It committed all role-players to both fundamental transformation of the whole mining industry, and immediate steps to stop the killings and bring those responsible to justice.”
However, the COSATU statement illustrates that “These however remain words on paper. No-one has been arrested for any of the deaths before, during or since the Marikana massacre. A culture of impunity remains throughout the area. Workers and communities live in constant fear. Our fundamental human right to move freely without fear of attack has been shattered.”
The South African Communist Party (SACP) also criticized the operations of the Farlam Commission in investigating the developments surrounding the Marikana massacre. In a statement from the SACP it says that “instead of a well-focused commission of inquiry the proceedings have been turned into a lawyer-heavy, quasi-criminal court process, starring a bevy of highly paid advocates and their teams. Some of the lawyers appear to be more interested in vying for the limelight and claiming billable hours, than in making a serious contribution to establishing a common understanding of the tragedy.”
In order to prevent further police violence and to improve the conditions of the miners these issues must be approached from a revolutionary political perspective. The underlying causes of violence, state repression and poverty in the industry derive from the unequal distribution of the wealth of South Africa which is created by the working people themselves.
Consequently to address these contradictions the mines must be seized by the workers and the state in order to take control of any restructuring efforts. The operations of the mining industry must serve the interests of the workers and the people of South Africa in their determination to eradicate poverty, underdevelopment and economic exploitation.
Even after two decades since the demise of the racist-apartheid system, COSATU points out “The mining industry is also characterized by remnants of apartheid. For decades employers exploited and promoted tribalism, racial segregation and discrimination, which are still to be found in many mines. Racism is institutionally entrenched through continued occupational segregation. While 83.7% of the total workforce in the industry is black, 84% of top management remains white! 72% of middle management is white, and 68% of professional workers and artisans are white.”
At present the mine owners in the platinum facilities are proposing large-scale lay-offs similar to what has occurred in the gold-producing sector. In order to wage a struggle against the further impoverishment of the working class the union leaders must come together to hammer out a program of struggle aimed at ensuring that the mine ownership be transferred to the majority who provided the labor to run these operations for so many decades.
Abayomi Azikiwe, PANW Editor, Featured on Press TV's US Desk: 'Egyptian Military Protects American Interests'
Abayomi Azikiwe, editor of the Pan-African News Wire, featured in Press TV's US Desk graphic. Azikiwe is a frequent contributor to international media., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.Journalist: Egyptian military protects US interests
Tue Aug 20, 2013 3:40AM GMT
To listen to this statement delivered to Press TV's US Desk by Abayomi Azikiwe on Egypt just click on the website below
Editor of Pan-African News Wire Abayomi Azikiwe says the US will not stop its military aid to Egypt as the Egyptian military is protecting US interests in the Middle East.
“At this point, the US administration feels that they cannot boycott relations with the Egyptian military because they are in fact responsible for upholding the United States’ interests in the entire region,” Azikiwe told Press TV on Monday.
The US administration on Friday announced it would continue sending $1.3 billion in military aid to Egypt.
“This military aid has been going on for over 30 years,” Azikiwe said, so “it is important that people inside the United States are joined with pro-democracy [elements]... to bring about a complete halt to all US aid to the Egyptian military.”
An increasing number of American lawmakers are now calling on the White House to suspend aid to the crisis-stricken country.
Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), co-chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and the first Muslim elected to Congress, said on Monday that he would end aid to Egypt.
Senator John McCain, a top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, who initially supported the continuation of US aid to Egypt following the overthrow of Morsi, said he now supported withholding the aid.
Senator Bob Corker (R, Tenn.) also said that the US should “recalibrate” its military aid to Egypt while keeping open lines of communication with the strategically important ally.
Even the Democratic leaders, who generally support the Obama administration’s approach, have opposed the idea of sending aid to Egypt.
Mohamed Morsi-- Egypt’s first democratically elected president-- was removed from power by the military on July 3. Since then, Morsi’s supporters have been holding protests in the streets calling for his return. The Egyptian military has cracked down on the protesters killing hundreds of them.
The White House has not yet called the ouster of Morsi a coup as such acknowledgement would have ended the US aid to Egypt in accordance with US law.
Autoworkers strike in South African on August 21, 2013. The country has been hit by labor strife over the last year., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
SA ‘will pay heavy price’ for strike
August 21, 2013
Pretoria. – Labour experts warned on Monday that lost production and revenue estimated at R700 million a day in the automotive sector would outstrip any material gains of striking workers as up to 30 000 of them downed tools across South Africa.In addition, the country would suffer debilitating reputational damage as much of the vehicle production was for export to overseas markets, in line with the government’s industrial focus.
The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa said the strike was in “full swing” and production had halted at all of the seven major motor manufacturers represented in the country.
These comprise BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota, General Motors, Volkswagen, Nissan and Ford, and include some truck and bus makers. This meant that vehicle output of about 3 000 units a day in South Africa had been affected.
Numsa said one of the truck manufacturers, MAN Truck and Bus SA, had tried to break the strike through the use of “scab labour” and the police, but its spokesman said workers had walked off production lines and operations had halted.
The National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa had estimated losses to be about R600 million a day, which included the negative effect on downstream manufacturing, including automotive components.
But the body’s director, Nico Vermeulen, said on Monday the association estimated only 18 000 workers were on strike.
Volkswagen SA spokesman Matt Gennrich said most workers on the morning shift at its Uitenhage plant had stayed away from work.
BMW SA spokesman Guy Kilfoil confirmed that production of about 345 3-Series sedans a day was halted at the car maker’s Rosslyn plant, near Pretoria.
“The strike has started, it’s in full swing,” said Alex Mashilo, chief negotiator for the vehicle sector of Numsa. Workers wanted a 14 percent increase across the board.
Mr Mashilo said the Automobile Manufacturers’ Employers Organisation was offering 8 percent.
Labour economist Loane Sharp at employment services company Adcorp said the wage negotiations in the vehicle sector had added a “layer of complexity” to collective bargaining in South Africa. The mining, transport and metals sectors have seen violent strikes following last year’s shooting of mine workers by police at Marikana.
Tony Healy, of national labour law consultancy Tony Healy and Associates, said the strike was in the context of the Congress of South African Trade Unions losing ground to rivals unions. “Probably what’s so worrying is the gap between the parties (in the automotive sector) is so big.”
More profitable companies in South Africa were more prone to industrial action over wages, Healy said. In this case Numsa wanted better medical aid conditions and improved shift-work flexibility for its members.
Sharp said Numsa would likely take the opportunity to “flex its muscles” and reach a high wage settlement agreement. This could prolong the strike.
On the other hand, employers might be looking to settle as soon as possible, he said. “While they (car manufacturers) would like to complain . . . they are significant beneficiaries of tariff protection.”
Department of Trade and Industry director-general Lionel October said government support for South Africa’s automotive sector was less favourable compared with Brazil, South Korea or Europe. The government was willing to offer support, and already did, to anybody who was willing to invest.
South Africa offered very low levels of tariff protection compared with many other countries, including its Brics partners. “It is possible to completely separate the auto industry incentive regime and (this) labour unrest,” October said.
Anti-US protest took place outside the American embassy in Pretoria. Obama is in the country for a state visit., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
US adamant illegal sanctions regime stays
August 21, 2013
Jen Psaki Felex
The United States Government has vowed to maintain the illegal sanctions it imposed on Zimbabwe despite President Mugabe’s overwhelming victory in the just ended harmonised elections insisting its position will only be reviewed when it sees “signs of change” on the ground. US State Department spokeswoman Ms Jen Psaki on Monday said the July 31 elections in which President Mugabe and Zanu-PF resoundingly won were flawed and her country had no plans to scrap the embargo against Zimbabwe.
This statement appears to be a direct response to a call to lift the sanctions by Sadc leaders during a summit in Lilongwe, Malawi, where President Mugabe’s re-election was endorsed.
The US stance received brickbats from political analysts who said the country was still to come to terms with the MDC-T’s crushing defeat, a party they had worked with in pursuit of regime change.
Said Ms Psaki: “The United States stands by our assessment that these elections, while relatively peaceful, did not represent a credible expression of the will of the Zimbabwean people due to serious flaws throughout the electoral process.
“We have made it clear to the Government of Zimbabwe and the region that a change in US sanctions policy will occur only in the context of credible, transparent and peaceful reforms that reflect the will of the Zimbabwean people.”
Sadc, the African Union, African Caribbean Pacific, Chinese delegation and a host of international observers have passed the vote as peaceful, free and fair with only the US, Britain and Australia condemning the polls.
Political analyst Professor Jonathan Moyo said it was unfortunate that the US, being the MDC-T financier, was still to come to terms with the impossibility of regime change in Zimbabwe.
“It is understandable that the statements are coming from people whose horse lost the race. They have been funding the MDC-T and obviously they are still to come to reality with the loss. Give them 40 days and 40 nights there is no doubt they will sober up and come to terms with the defeat. It is only after waking up from the dream that they will fall and step in line with the rest of the world,” he said.
Another political analyst, Mr Gabriel Chaibva, said Zimbabweans refused to be puppets of Americans by voting out the MDC-T.
“The people and observers on the ground have spoken and we do not panic because of what the US says,” he said.
“These guys supported the MDC-T to fight for the interests of their kith and kin who are the commercial white farmers, but their project finally collapsed with the elections.”
He said by calling for sanctions, MDC-T leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai should be held accountable for acting in a manner “prejudicial to the economic interests of Zimbabweans”.
Midlands State University lecturer Mr Christopher Gwatidzo said Zimbabwe would never lose sleep because of the statements by the US.
“Many people have endorsed the elections and America is not the whole world,” he said.
“In fact, our elections have provided a benchmark for other countries as we have proved to be a mature democratic society. During the liberation struggle they sided with the Rhodesian government and we should never expect anything positive from them.”
Mr Gwatidzo said it was clear the Americans were taking a cue from Mr Tsvangirai and would never concede defeat.
“Their stance was predictable and were always going to side with the MDC-T,” said another MSU lecturer, Dr Nhamo Mhiripiri.
“They always want to be on top of every situation and if they are to come for any re-engagement they should know that we do not allow them to dictate the pace because these would bilateral negotiations.”
President Mugabe garnered 61,09 percent of the valid votes cast, trouncing Mr Tsvangirai who managed only 33,94 percent.
Amaal oil fields in east Libya. The privatization of the industry is taking place after the counter-revolution against Col. Muammar Gaddafi., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
WTI Extends Biggest Loss in Two Months as Brent Drops on Libya
By Ben Sharples - Aug 21, 2013
West Texas Intermediate slid a third day after declining the most in two months yesterday amid speculation the Federal Reserve will taper economic stimulus. Brent declined in London as Libya prepared to open some oil ports closed by labor unrest.
Futures fell as much as 0.4 percent in New York before the Federal Open Market Committee publishes minutes of a July meeting today, with 65 percent of economists surveyed by Bloomberg predicting the Fed will taper bond purchases in September. The Libyan ports of Zueitina and Hariga are ready to resume exports, the oil ministry said yesterday. An Energy Information Administration report today may indicate U.S. crude stockpiles shrank by 1.5 million last week.
“There is some squaring of positions,” David Lennox, a resource analyst at Fat Prophets in Sydney, said by phone. The market is at the “back-end” of peak demand from the U.S. driving season, he said.
WTI for October delivery was at $104.80 a barrel, down 31 cents, in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 1:37 p.m. Singapore time. It fell as much as 38 cents. The volume of all futures traded was about 28 percent below the 100-day average. The September contract expired at $104.96 yesterday after losing 2 percent, the most since June 20.
Brent for October settlement slid 43 cents to $109.72 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The European benchmark crude was at a premium of $4.89 to WTI. The spread was $5.04 yesterday, the widest since June 28.
Crude inventories dropped 1.2 million barrels in the week ended Aug. 16, the industry-funded American Petroleum Institute said yesterday, according to two people familiar with the report. U.S. gasoline stockpiles fell by 3.7 million barrels. Supplies probably dropped by 1.5 million barrels, according to the median estimate of analysts surveyed before today’s report from the EIA, the Energy Department’s statistical unit.
Distillate inventories, including heating oil and diesel, declined 1.8 million barrels, according to the API. They are projected to increase by 1 million barrels, the survey shows.
Refinery operating rates are expected to have decreased by 0.5 percentage point. U.S. refiners typically boost output to meet increased fuel demand during the so-called summer driving season from late May to early September.
Libya prepared to open some oil ports as the government vied with guards for control of export facilities. The country’s navy said it would seize any tankers attempting illicit shipments.
Libya produced 800,000 barrels a day of crude last month, half the rate a year earlier, according to a Bloomberg survey of output from the 12-member Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. It holds Africa’s largest oil reserves.
WTI may rebound on technical support, data compiled by Bloomberg shows. Futures yesterday halted their decline near an upward-sloping trend line connecting the lows of June 24 and Aug. 8., which is at about $104.90 a barrel today. Buy orders tend to be clustered around chart-support levels.
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