Raul Connolly

“Pakistan has demanded an apology and explanation from the United States over a drone strike in a tribal region, which officials said killed 35 people,” ABC.net.au said on March 18. It said it was the seventh US drone strike in nine days. The article said it was the most lethal drone strike North Waziristan region since the US military escalated its bombing of Pakistani areas near the Afghan border in 2008. A Pakistani foreign ministry spokesperson Tehmina Janjua said: “The government of Pakistan strongly condemns the drone strike which has resulted in a large number of casualties …
Squatters have taken over a mansion in London owned by the son of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, AFP said on March 8. The eight-bedroom house in Hampstead, north London, is owned by Seif al-Islam Gaddafi. The article said: “Members of a campaign group called ‘Topple the Tyrants’ said they had occupied the mansion and wanted it transferred to the people of Libya.” “The plush home, in a secluded, leafy close surrounded by some of Britain’s most expensive residential streets, boasts an indoor swimming pool, a sauna room and a cinema room.”
A NATO airstrike killed nine children collecting firewood in eastern Afghanistan on March 2, Afghan officials have said. A March 2 WashingtonPost.com article said the deaths in Konar province “became the latest irritant in the tense relationship between President Hamid Karzai and the international force in the country”. The top NATO commander, US general David Petraeus, issued an apology for the error, which the occupying forces blamed on “faulty communication”.
“Haiti’s infamous dictator ‘Baby Doc’ Duvalier, returned to his country this week, while the country's first elected President, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, is kept out”, Mark Weisbrot wrote in the January 20 Huffington Post. “These two facts really say everything about Washington’s policy toward Haiti, and our government's respect for democracy in that country and in the region.”
Twenty-six children in Gaza were shot by Israeli troops near the border during 2010, a Save the Children report found. AlJazeera.net reported on January 18 that the report found: “Children in Gaza are coming under regular gunfire from Israeli soldiers while scavenging in the ruins of buildings bombed during the Israeli invasion of Gaza in 2009 ...”
Bolivian Vice-President Alvaro Garcia Linera has posted all US diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks that pertain to Bolivia on his official website, the Associated Press said on December 8. Garcia Linera said he wanted people to know the “barbarities and insults” of what he called Washington's “interventionist infiltration”. The Bolivian government, headed by left-wing President Evo Morales, has faced US-backed attempts to overthrow it. In September 2008, Morales expelled the US ambassador.
The Venezuelan government released a statement accusing the United States of provoking the ongoing conflict between North and South Korea to further US interests in the region, Venezuelanalysis.com said November 26. The statement came amid escalating tensions, as the US and South Korea carried out military exercises in disputed waters North Korea claims as its own.
The Venezuelan government has begun distributing the first of 350,000 portable Canaima laptop computers to be provided to public elementary school children by the end of the year, Venezuelanalysis.com said on November 17. Education minister Jennifer Gil said: “The Canaima Plan is a milestone and a technological innovation. It allows us to keep deepening our integral and massive education system that does not involve just students, but the entire family environment, parents, representatives and teachers.”
“The National Front of Popular Resistance (FNRP) expresses its energetic condemnation of the massacre against the campesino community in El Tumbador, Trujillo, in which our companeros Ignacio Reyes, Teodoro Acosta, Siriaco Munozm Raul Castillo and Jose Luis Sauceda were assassinated”, the FNRP said in a November 16 statement. All of those killed were members of the Campesino Movement of Aguan (MCA). The campesino activists were killed by assassins hired by pro-US oligarch Miguel Facusse, who helped fund the coup that overthrew president Manuel Zelaya last year.
Frank Mugisha, chair of the NGO Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMU), is no stranger to receiving threats because of his sexual orientation, a November 5 Amnesty International statement said. “But when a Ugandan tabloid published his personal details in October and called for him and others to be hanged for ‘recruiting children’”, the statement posted on Amnesty.org continued, “he knew there would be a struggle ahead — on the streets and in the courts”.

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