Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 31 n° 344

Posts Tagged ‘countries’

Terrorist content online: MEPs agree to start negotiations with EU countries

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 28 settembre 2019

• Internet companies would have one hour to remove terrorist content
• Penalties of up to 4% of the company’s turnover in case of persistent breaches
• Online platforms should not be subject to general monitoring obligations, nor compulsory use of filters
Civil Liberties MEPs agreed on Tuesday to begin discussions with EU ministers on new EU rules to tackle the dissemination of terrorist content on the internet.
According to the draft legislation, internet companies hosting content uploaded by users (like Facebook or YouTube) that offer their services in the EU will have to remove terrorist content when told to do so by the competent national authority, at the latest within one hour of receiving the order.The European Parliament adopted its position on this proposal last April and the Civil Liberties Committee today confirmed it with 55 votes in favour to 6 against and 4 abstentions. EP and Council negotiators will soon begin the discussions on the final form of the rules.MEPs do not want platforms to be obliged to monitor the content they upload or to have to apply automatic filters. Parliament also wants to ensure that free speech and press freedom are guaranteed, so MEPs made it clear that the expression of polemic or controversial views on sensitive political questions should not be considered terrorist content.
Negotiations with the Council of the EU may start as soon as the negotiating mandate is confirmed by plenary, which will consider the proposal at the 9-10 October session in Brussels.

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InnoEnergy start-ups have created 1,741 jobs and have brought energy access to 56,000 people in developing countries

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 17 ottobre 2018

Copenhagen, Denmark, The sixth edition, taking place in Copenhagen on 17 -18 October, focuses on the theme “The Future is Now”. InnoEnergy has welcomed more than 700 attendees from over 40 countries to join 150 cutting edge sustainable energy innovations.InnoEnergy, Europe’s sustainable energy engine supported by the EIT, has launched its inaugural impact report today at The Business Booster (TBB) in Copenhagen. The report reveals that InnoEnergy’s work supporting energy start-ups is having a direct impact on Europe’s clean energy transition, with its start-ups having created 1,741 jobs across Europe and brought energy access to 56,000 people in developing countries since 2011.Other key findings revealed in the report include that InnoEnergy´s assets will generate 1,147 GWh of power from clean energy sources, save 809.5m€ in energy costs and reduce carbon emissions by a total of 5.5m tons over 25 years, the equivalent to removing 47,000 cars from the road.
Elena Bou, Innovation Director at InnoEnergy, said during an exclusive press conference at TBB: “It is amazing to see the impact we are achieving together and to cement our position as the trusted innovation partner – guiding businesses on their journeys. Our 200 start-ups have brought innovative technologies to life that are meeting the energy challenges of our changing society. Whether it is by reducing greenhouse emissions or creating jobs, these companies are creating a noticeable impact on the way Europe thinks about, develops and uses sustainable energy.” Recent start-up success stories from the report include the Swedish wave power technology company CorPower Ocean, which has developed and tested a technology to turn waves into electricity with the aid of buoys. Patrik Möller, CEO of CorPower, said during the press conference: “Wave energy is a huge opportunity for Europe to establish a new industry, with significant job creation and export business potential. In our recent deployment in Orkney, Scotland, we have just demonstrated fundamental improvements in survivability and efficiency.” CorPower is planning to build its first pilot arrays from 2021 to 2023 and pre-commercial farms from 2023.Pro-Drone, the leading developer of automated drones for wind turbine blade inspections, on the other hand, is reducing the costs for onshore wind turbine services by €1,000 per inspection.André Moura, Founder & CEO of Pro-Drone, told the journalists: “We have already carried out over 2,300 blade inspections in Europe and South America in our first year of commercial operation. We are proud to be delivering robust, high quality and safe inspections to over 15 clients with ambitious plans to grow globally in 2019.” Pro-Drone´s latest feature is an automatic damage identification tool that is helping inspectors to reduce their assessment time while improving their accuracy and robustness.

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‘Spirit of Wipro’ Run 2018 Held in 125 Cities across 34 countries

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 24 settembre 2018

Wipro Limited (NYSE: WIT, BSE: 507685, NSE: WIPRO), a leading global information technology, consulting and business process services company, today organized the 13th edition of the ‘Spirit of Wipro’ Run in 125 cities across 34 countries. Several thousands of Wipro employees, their friends and families, alumni, customers, partners and suppliers came together for the Run. The theme for this year’s Run was ‘We Before Me’, a concept rooted in the spirit of camaraderie that drives the ‘Spirit of Wipro’ Run and celebrates the collective passion of participants and teams whose goal is to connect rather than just compete.The Run is an annual global initiative to champion and reinforce the core values of the organization: Be passionate about clients’ success, Treat each person with respect, Be global and responsible, and Unyielding integrity in everything we do. Abidali Z Neemuchwala, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director, Wipro Limited said, “Everything we do at Wipro is firmly rooted in the ‘Spirit of Wipro’. The ‘Spirit of Wipro’ Run embodies that commitment. Long distance running requires perseverance, long days of physical and mental preparation, and determination for the cause. It is fantastic to see the collective spirit of Wiproites and our clients and friends across the globe who put ‘We Before Me’ to make the Run a success.” Saurabh Govil, President and Chief Human Resources Officer, Wipro Limited said, “The ‘Spirit of Wipro’ Run is among the largest employee engagement events in the world. It is a great manifestation of what the spirit of togetherness and genuine collaboration can achieve. The Run that brings together our employees, their families and friends, clients, partners and suppliers, emphasizes our commitment towards putting greater common good over individual interests.”
The ‘Spirit of Wipro’ Run 2018 was organized in New Jersey, Portland, Mountain View, Atlanta, Tampa, Boston, Austin, Dallas, Nottingham, Reading, Perth, Melbourne, Sydney, Edmonton, Ottawa, Dublin, Yokohama, Kuala Lumpur, Curitiba, Guadalajara, Mexico City, Cebu, Manila, Doha, Dubai, Dalian, Singapore, Johannesburg, and Zurich among other cities. In India, the ‘Spirit of Wipro Run’ was held in 15 cities, including Bangalore, Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Pune and Kolkata. The event saw an officially timed 21K or half marathon in Bangalore, Chennai, and Pune. This apart, timed 10K races were held in Bangalore, Pune, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai, and Hyderabad.Each year the proceeds from the Run are used towards social causes identified by participants, globally. The funds raised by the runners globally are matched by Wipro Limited and are used by Wipro Cares, the community initiatives arm of Wipro Limited. In the United States, where Wipro has a significant presence, the funds will be used to support K-12 education support programs in underserved communities. In India, the 2018 edition of the Run will support the educational needs of underprivileged and disadvantaged children.

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CTA Says New NAFTA Agreement Must Include Three Countries and Focus on Key Issues

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 4 settembre 2018

The following statement is attributed to Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, Consumer Technology Association (CTA), regarding President Trump’s notification to Congress of plans to update the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA): “We’re encouraged by the open dialogue between the Trump and Peña Nieto administrations, working toward a modernized trade agreement that recognizes the technology sector’s critical role in American economic growth. At the same time, we are concerned that excluding Canada from a final agreement will limit our export opportunities and hurt the U.S. economy.“Nevertheless, to maintain America’s innovation leadership a renegotiated agreement must: reduce barriers to digital trade by eliminating tariffs on content such as e-books and software; protect intellectual property rights and innovation with a balanced copyright approach including fair use and intermediary liability protections; eliminate technical barriers to trade; and recognize parity in rules of origin.“The technology sector is critical to America’s economic growth and global leadership. We urge the administration to focus on these key innovation priorities as negotiations evolve.”

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Carestream’s Successful R&D Efforts Earn 36 U.S. Patents In 2017; 43 Additional Patents in Other Countries

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 25 gennaio 2018

CarestreamCarestream Health was awarded 36 new patents from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office last year for innovation in radiography; cone beam CT imaging; healthcare IT; and other areas. The company also received 43 additional patents in European and Asian countries last year.New medical image capture technologies related to the development of cone beam computed tomography (CT) systems designed for orthopaedic extremity imaging
Enhancements to Carestream’s portfolio of healthcare IT systems that manage, store and share patient data and medical imaging exams
Continued technology advances in Carestream’s growing portfolio of radiology systems that can enhance diagnostic image quality for a wide range of healthcare providers; and
Advancements in Carestream laser imagers that provide affordable output of digital X-ray exams onto medical film and paper.
The company’s product portfolio includes digital imaging systems for general radiology and specialty areas such as orthopaedics and pediatrics; digital laser imagers that output medical images to film and paper; and the latest healthcare IT solutions and cloud-based services for hospitals, clinics and physician practices. (photo: Carestream)

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EU countries must step up fight against sexual abuse of children, say MEPs

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 16 dicembre 2017

european parliamentTake measures against new forms of online crime, such as revenge porn and sexual extortion. Strengthen police and judicial cooperation to protect migrant children. EU member states must work more closely with each other and with Europol and the IT industry to fight sexual abuse and exploitation of children, said Parliament on Thursday.MEPs approved a non-legislative resolution assessing the implementation of the 2011 EU directive on combating sexual abuse of children. The text, drafted by Anna Maria Corazza Bildt (EPP, SE), was passed by 597 votes to 6, with 20 abstentions. Web pages containing child sexual abuse material must be quickly removed and, when this is not possible, member states should block access to those pages for users within their territory, MEPs say.
National authorities should enhance cooperation with the IT industry, as well as with third countries and Interpol, to speed up notifying and take-down procedures, in the cases where illegal content is made available from abroad, the text adds. It suggests drawing up blacklists of web sites containing child sexual material, to be shared among member states and with Europol and Interpol, and communicated to internet providers. Adequate financial and human resources, reinforced cross-border information exchange and updated digital investigative techniques are key to protecting children against sexual abuse and exploitation, they insist. MEPs worry about the threats and risks to which children are exposed online, particularly recruitment. They also demand specific measures to combat new forms of crime online, such as revenge porn and sexual extortion. Member states that have yet to do so, should criminalise online grooming, cyber stalking and luring children online, they add. MEPs highlight the special vulnerability of migrant children to abuse, trafficking and sexual exploitation and call for stronger police and judicial cooperation, and rapid exchange of information, to trace missing children. The resolution urges member states to introduce mandatory criminal background checks for persons applying or volunteering for activities or jobs with access to children, and to “systematically exchange information on individuals posing a risk to children”. MEPs want to prevent sex offenders moving unnoticed from one member state to another to work with minors.
Parliament notes that most cases of sexual abuse and sexual exploitation of children are not reported and calls on member states to develop or reinforce child helplines, which should be free, confidential and available round the clock, to provide help and support for victims and ensure their fundamental right to be heard. Finally, MEPs urge member states to ensure that victims receive legal aid, psychological support and assistance. Anna Maria Corazza Bildt (EPP, SE), rapporteur, said: “”Member states must do more, better and faster to ensure zero tolerance against child sexual abuse online and offline. The focus should be on removing illegal material at source and blocking when this is not possible, with faster procedures and safeguards. We also urge the internet industry to take their share of responsibility for working out innovative solutions to protect children”.

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Octapharma Donates 30.5 Million International Units of Its Medicine Nuwiq to Treat People with Haemophilia in Developing Countries

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 24 novembre 2017

HaemophiliaOctapharma is pleased to announce the completion of a charitable donation of 30.5 million international units of its human cell-line derived recombinant factor VIII product, Nuwiq®, in collaboration with Project SHARE, North Andover, Massachusetts (USA).Up to 75% of the world’s estimated 400,000 people with haemophilia have little or no access to treatment that resolves life- and limb-threatening bleeds, and enables surgery and rehabilitation. A humanitarian program, Project SHARE facilitates the donation of blood-clotting factor products for the treatment of people with haemophilia in need of factor replacement therapy in countries where these medicines are scarce or still unavailable.Over the last nine months, donations of Nuwiq® have been reaching seriously ill people in need in 16 countries: Armenia, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Cambodia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Fiji, Kenya, Honduras, Myanmar, Nepal, Nicaragua, Philippines, Romania and Venezuela.“We are deeply grateful to Octapharma for allowing us the privilege to serve those with haemophilia in developing countries who have limited or no access to treatment. These donations are saving lives,” said Laureen A. Kelley, the founder of Project SHARE.
“Octapharma has been committed to improving the lives of people with Haemophilia A since 1983. We are glad to continue our donation initiatives, providing access to patients with haemophilia in countries with little to no access to therapy,” remarked Olaf Walter, Board Member at Octapharma AG in Lachen, Switzerland.“The haemophilia factor concentrates are used on patients suffering from serious joint and musculoskeletal complications and life-threatening bleeds,” said Walter Mwanda, Patron of the Kenya Haemophilia Association. “Assistance to one you do not know is great, and to a child is even greater. The Kenyans, mainly children living with haemophilia, thank you very much.”“We cannot thank Octapharma and Project SHARE enough to for being so kind and generous,” said Suraksha Mani, of the Nepal Haemophilia Society. “We had limited factor stock when we received the Nuwiq® delivery. People in rural areas now have better access to factor concentrate. We believe this donation has already made positive changes in the lives of many people with haemophilia in Nepal. It has been life-saving and is helping to prevent disabilities.” “This donation of Nuwiq® will help families with haemophilia in Honduras,” said Maria del Carmen of the Honduran Haemophilia Society. “The use of this medicine will serve families because their children and young people will have factor doses in their homes and therefore not miss classes in their schools and universities.” Antonia Luque, Venezuelan Association for Haemophilia, added “We are currently going through a crisis for which we do not have the medicines that people need. There are currently 2185 people living with haemophilia A in Venezuela. Please accept our gratitude for such a valuable donation that will come to relieve cases of our population who are suffering from haemophilia A.” (photo: Haemophilia)

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Class action against UK Government for failing in ‘duty of care’ to British citizens in countries like the UAE

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 18 ottobre 2017

CozyA landmark class action against the UK government is being prepared by clients of Radha Stirling, David Haigh and a UK Queen’s Counsel.The action is based on the UK government’s failure in its duty of care towards citizens about the dangers of places like Dubai and the UAE. The Government has failed to give sufficient warning to UK nationals travelling to the Sharia governed desert state, it has failed to respond to requests for help for British citizens who fall foul of the strict laws, and when it does respond, it takes almost no action on behalf of its citizens.The Treaty between the UK and UAE on judicial assistance in civil and commercial matters. (2009) states in Article 1 that, “Nationals of one Party shall, in the territory of the other Party, enjoy the same judicial protection as nationals of the other Party and shall have the right of access to courts of the other Party under the same conditions as those for the nationals of the other Party.” This is clearly not the normal experience of UK Nationals in countries like the UAE.Radha Stirling, CEO of Detained in Dubai and Managing Partner at Stirling Haigh, a UK based legal advisory firm, along with Queen’s Counsel, have reviewed a number of cases of British nationals who have suffered legal abuse abroad. They are fielding calls from citizens seeking to join the action and expect the total number of complainants to be in the vicinity of 50-100.Statements taken so far have included everything from small debt cases, wrongful arrest, false imprisonment and detention without charges, to large commercial cases where the UK hasn’t enforced the Treaty and large amounts of money have been lost.The breaches have left UK businessmen and private individuals flailing as Emirati companies are allowed to steal from UK businessmen with impunity. In the UK, they are protected by the lack of enforcement of the treaty and in the UAE, they are protected by the courts and the law, while UK nationals remain fully exposed, imprisoned and in many cases left penniless.The recent case of Dr. Haddad who has lost millions of pounds of profits and investments in KMG holdings will feature prominently in the lawsuit. Dr. Haddad was a successful businessman in the UAE, and a partner in the highly profitable KM Holdings when he was illegally deprived of his corporate assets by his local business partner, who then employed Habib Al Mulla to file a series of frivolous civil cases against him.Mr Haddad stated “The aim of this was to lock me out of my own business and to appropriate my shares in the company.In order to achieve this, Habib Al Mulla illegally represented both partners in the same civil case, without having obtained Power of Attorney. During this farcical court case, Al Mulla “confessed” on my behalf (with no legal authority to do so) to the crime of embezzlement, which ultimately led to my being criminally charged, and to the theft of my GBP 250,000 pound share in my own company.”
Radha Stirling has issued a statement on the recent developments within the action, she says that, “repeated warnings have been issued to the UK FCO, by myself and other individuals concerning the inadequacy of their protection and the inaccuracy of their advice. Dr Haddad has spoken to them personally about his case, they admitted that the treaty has been breached but still refused to enforce it. The UK FCO have refused to make themselves publicly accountable, instead giving preference to diplomatic relations and protecting trade agreements; even to the detriment of UK citizens.”Ms. Stirling continues, “Because Emiratis are the largest investors in the UK, they are being protected over the interests of UK nationals when it comes to business. Emirati companies are overtly favoured and using assets stolen from UK businessmen in the UAE to make their investments. It’s time for the treaty to be enforced thoroughly to stop all breaches, the UK government needs to make it known that it is on the side of its citizens, rather than foreign business investors. ” Radha Stirling said “The FCO, while giving some travel advice, have not provided remotely sufficient information to the British public to help them avoid arrest. The majority of British nationals travelling to the UAE are committing ‘crimes’ without knowing it, such as sharing certain posts on Facebook and Twitter, drinking alcohol on the flight, sharing a room with their partner, holding hands in public and so on. The government does not advise citizens of the serious flaws in the judicial system that could leave people locked up for years merely on one person’s hearsay accusation. The UK Courts will not even extradite people to the UAE and in their high court ruling stated this is because of the “real risk of human rights violations and unfair trials”. If the UK courts are aware of the risks, the government needs to follow suit and advise their citizens.”

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Renewable energy will be cheapest electricity in G20 countries by 2030

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 7 luglio 2017

amburgoHamburg. Wind energy and solar power will be the cheapest form of power generation in every G20 country by the year 2030 at the latest, a new Greenpeace Germany report has found.Ahead of the G20 Summit in Hamburg, the Greenpeace Germany-commissioned study also found that in about half of the G20 countries, renewable energy has been cheaper or equal in price to electricity generated from dirty coal or hazardous nuclear power plants since 2015.”There can be no excuses anymore. Climate protection increasingly makes economic sense across the G20 as renewable energy becomes cheaper than dirty coal and nuclear,” Greenpeace Germany energy expert Tobias Austrup said.“Any G20 country that is still investing in coal and nuclear power plants is wasting their money on technology that will not be competitive in coming years. The G20 now has a responsibility to send a clear signal that accelerating the clean energy transition is not only the right thing to do for the climate, but also for the economy.”The Finnish Lappeenranta University of Technology study, commissioned by Greenpeace, calculates the electricity generation costs in all G20 countries for the years 2015 and 2030.The study found that wind farms already generate the cheapest form of electricity in 2015 in large parts of Europe, South America, the US, China and Australia. Due to rapid technical progress and falling price, in 2030 solar energy will be so cheap that it will be even cheaper than wind power in many G20 countries. Global investments mirror the results of the Greenpeace study. UN figures reveal that in 2016 investments in renewables were double that of investments in conventional power stations. About 55 percent of the added electricity capacities were based on renewable energies last year – a record figure.
US President Trump, however, is mistakenly promoting coal and nuclear power.”Trump’s energy policy is simply a bad deal,” Austrup added. “The US has excellent conditions for expanding its wind and solar energy capabilities and states like California, Texas or Iowa will not miss this chance.”

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Researchers develop faster and cheaper cardiac imaging test for developing countries

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 26 Mag 2017

pragaPrague, Czech Republic Researchers in the UK and Peru have developed a faster and cheaper cardiac imaging test that can be used in developing countries, according to the results of the INCA-Peru study presented today at EuroCMR 2017.1 The scan is three times faster, less than one-fifth of the cost, and changed clinical management in 33% of patients.Cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) is the gold standard for diagnosing many cardiovascular diseases. It is used to measure the structure and function of the heart, and to assess scarring on the heart muscle after a heart attack to predict if another will occur.Lead author Dr Katia Menacho, a cardiologist from Peru and PhD student at University College London (UCL), UK, said: “In Peru just two public hospitals offer CMR – each performs 12 scans on one day a week. Five private hospitals provide CMR at $USD 600–800 per scan. Public hospitals without CMR refer to the private sector and it takes up to three months to approve the paperwork, delaying diagnosis and treatment.” The Impact of Non-invasive CMR Assessment (INCA)-Peru study was set up to develop and test an ultrafast CMR protocol for wider uptake in Peru. The study was an international academic and political collaboration between Peru, the UK, the USA and Brazil.An initial protocol was developed at UCL which reduced average scan time from 60 to ten minutes. It was successfully used in Thailand to assess cardiac and liver iron overload in patients with thalassaemia major.2 The protocol was adapted for the INCA-Peru study by adding the contrast agent gadolinium which is critical for the detection of cardiac fibrosis and infarction, and the diagnosis of various cardiovascular diseases. It was tested in a pilot study of 50 patients at UCL and each scan took 15 to 20 minutes.For the current analysis, the ultrafast CMR protocol using contrast was tested over two days at two hospitals in Peru, accompanied by training for local cardiologists, radiologists, and technicians. The study included 100 patients with suspected cardiomyopathy and 11 healthy controls. All of the patients were under local cardiology care and had never been assessed by CMR.There were no scan-related complications. All scans were diagnostic, although two patients had a repeat scan (one due to failure of contrast delivery and one to confirm unexpected cardiac amyloidosis). Gadolinium based contrast agents were administered to 95% of patients (5% of patients had iron overload).Each ultrafast CMR scan took 18 minutes on average and cost $USD 150. The most common underlying diagnoses were hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (21%), non-ischaemic dilated cardiomyopathy (17%), and ischaemic cardiomyopathy (11%), plus 20 other diagnoses including tumours, congenital heart disease, myocardial iron overload, amyloidosis, vasculitis, and apical thrombus.CMR had an impact on the clinical management of 33% of patients. CMR revealed a new, unsuspected diagnosis in 20% of patients, leading to a complete change in management. In 30% of patients no further cardiac testing was needed (coronary angiography, computed tomography, cardiac biopsy).“We showed that this ultrafast CMR protocol can be used to accurately diagnosis patients leading to changes in clinical management,” said Dr Menacho. “The protocol takes one-third of the standard scan time at a fraction of the cost.”INCA-Peru researchers will follow-up the patients for two years to evaluate the impact of diagnosis by ultrafast CMR on long-term morbidity and mortality.Dr Menacho said: “Accurate diagnoses provided by CMR have reduced morbidity and mortality in Europe and we hope to find the same in Peru. If we show long-term benefits on prognosis we will seek support from the Peruvian government to provide ultrafast CMR at more hospitals in Peru. The accurate diagnosis provided by CMR should lead to more targeted patient care and better outcomes.”

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EU countries that do not host asylum seekers should not get EU solidarity funding, says lead MEP

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 11 marzo 2017

europa-comunitariaAll EU countries must share responsibility for hosting asylum seekers arriving in Europe. So it follows those that refuse to do so should not get solidarity funding from other EU member states, Cecilia Wikström (ALDE, SE), lead MEP on the reform the Dublin asylum system told the Civil Liberties Committee on Thursday.Ms Wikström presented her draft report on the proposal to review the Dublin III Regulation, which determines the member state responsible for processing an asylum application. She proposed making several amendments to the Commission´s proposal:
no option for member states refusing to accept asylum seekers to pay a “solidarity contribution” of €250,000 per person instead. If an EU country refuses to participate in the relocation system, then it should not be eligible for solidarity payments from other member states, through the European Structural and Investment Funds,
transfers of asylum-seekers to other EU countries should be automatically triggered when the first country has reached 100% of its allocated share (not 150%, as proposed by the European Commission),
no “admissibility checks” ahead of relocation,
faster family reunification and special focus on children, and applicants for international protection should have the option to register as a group (maximum 30 people) upon arrival in Europe. They would then be transferred together.

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Refugees: MEPs demand emergency winter aid and transfers to other EU countries

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 20 gennaio 2017

Female refugeesEU and national authorities should provide emergency aid to help migrants and refugees to cope with freezing temperatures and snow in several parts of Europe, MEPs urged on Wednesday. They also called on EU governments to keep their promises to transfer thousands of asylum-seekers, particularly from Greece, to other countries. Several speakers called the plight of refugees in the Greek islands, but also in other countries like Serbia and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, “unacceptable” and some asked how many people have to die of cold before the EU reacts. Many MEPs underlined that only 6% of the 160,000 asylum-seekers who should have been relocated from Greece and Italy have so far been moved. “We are not proud of this very painful situation”, said humanitarian aid Commissioner Christos Stylianides, who explained that the EU had allocated enough money to help Greece cope with this unprecedented conditions, but that “some weaknesses on the ground did not allow this money to be utilised in the best way”.

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Resettlement of refugees from third countries to the EU

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 15 novembre 2016

Female refugeesThe proposal for a new law setting up an EU Resettlement Framework will be debated at a hearing in the Civil Liberties Committee on Monday afternoon 15.00-17.00. MEPs will be presented with a study on resettlement programmes across member states and statements on the proposal by the UN refugee agency UNHCR, International Organisation for Migration, IOM, and NGOs.The aim of the Commission’s proposal, presented on 13 July 2016, is to provide a unified procedure for resettlement across the EU by establishing a common set of standard procedures for the selection and treatment of resettlement candidates, and set broad geographical priorities from where the resettlement will take place. Member states will still be able to decide how many people will be resettled each year. The Commission proposes to provide €10,000 from the EU Budget for each person resettled. The proposal is part of the Commission’s strategy for an European Agenda on Migration communicated on 13 May 2015. Parliament’s rapporteur is Malin Björk (GUE-NGL, SV). A delegation from the Civil Liberties Committee in September visited Lebanon on a fact finding mission in relation to the Committee’s legislative work on the Resettlement Framework.

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MEPs urge EU countries to take more asylum-seekers from Italy, Greece and Turkey

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 17 settembre 2016

mediterraneoEU countries must honour their pledges to accept refugees relocated from Greece and Italy, to relieve migratory pressure on these two “frontline” countries, and at the same time discourage irregular entries by opening up legal and safe routes to the EU, MEPs said on Thursday.In a non-binding resolution approved by 470 votes to 131, with 50 abstentions, Parliament rejected a European Commission proposal to take 54,000 places from a scheme for relocating asylum seekers from Greece and Italy to other EU member states, and use them to resettle Syrian refugees from Turkey in the EU instead, as part of the migration deal agreed between Turkey and EU leaders last March. Under the Commission proposal, EU countries could deduct Syrian refugees needing international protection who they take in from Turkey from the numbers of asylum-seekers whom they have pledged to relocate from Greece and Italy.The deal between Turkey and EU leaders requires the EU to take in one Syrian refugee from Turkey for each Syrian returned from the Greek islands to Turkey. Parliament objects that the intra-EU relocation scheme should not be mixed up with the resettlement one, which involves a non-EU country. “Resettlement should not take place at the expense of relocation”, says the text prepared by Ska Keller (Greens, DE). MEPs note that the need for emergency relocation from Greece and Italy to other EU member states is expected to remain high, pointing to the urgent humanitarian situation in Greece and the risk of deterioration in Italy. During the debate in plenary, Keller underlined that the relocation scheme is a true solidarity instrument that “needs to be strengthened, not watered down”. The problem, she added, is that member states are “simply not doing enough” and complained that some countries have not even taken a single refugee.In the resolution, MEPs stress that even though EU countries have agreed to relocate a total of 160,000 asylum-seekers within two years (two separate decisions were taken in 2015, for 40,000 and 120,000 places, respectively), only a small percentage of people have so far been relocated (see updated figures). They therefore urge EU countries to make available at least one-third of their promised relocation places by 31 December 2016.
The text also asks that Afghan, Iraqi and Eritrean refugees be made eligible for relocation within the EU. It notes that in 2015, Afghans were the second largest group of asylum-seekers in the EU, with an unprecedented number of around 180,000, many of whom were unaccompanied minors with special protection needs.

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LIBE meetings on 4/07 and 7/07 (Strasbourg): EU Border Guard / Counter terrorism / Safe countries of origin / Visas

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 2 luglio 2016

StrasbourgStrasbourg. Monday (19.00-19.45) European Border and Coast Guard – rapporteur Artis Pabriks (EPP, LV). Vote on the text informally agreed with the Council.
New directive on combating terrorism – rapporteur Monika Hohlmeier (EPP, DE). Adoption of draft report and on the opening of interinstitutional negotiations. Press conference with the rapporteur on Tuesday 5 July at 9.30.
Thursday (10.30-11.20)Establishing an EU common list of safe countries of origin for the purposes of common procedures for granting and withdrawing international protection – rapporteur Sylvie Guillaume (S&D, FR). Adoption of draft report and on the opening of interinstitutional negotiations.
Review of the visa suspension mechanism – List of third countries whose nationals must be in possession of visas when crossing the external borders and those that are exempted. Rapporteur Agustín Díaz De Mera (EPP, ES). Adoption of draft report.
Directive on legal aid for suspects or accused persons deprived of liberty and in European arrest warrant proceedings – rapporteur Dennis de Jong (GUE, NL). Vote on the text informally agreed with the Council.
Presentations and debates
Proposal of a visa waiver for Georgia – rapporteur Mariya Gabriel (EPP, BG). Presentation of draft report. Monday, 19.45-20.00

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Global faith leaders unite in support of Paris Agreement on climate change

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 25 aprile 2016

climate_changeOn Thursday at the New York headquarters of the United Nations, an event a generation in the making will take place. After years of action ranging from grassroots advocacy to international climate change conferences, more than 150 countries are expected to sign the Paris Agreement on climate change on this day. A total of 195 countries adopted the agreement, which will enter force in 2020. The high-level ceremony takes place on Earth Day, 22 April.This event is an important step in implementing the international agreement, which outlines measures to hold global temperature increases to well below 2°C and pursues efforts to limit it to 1.5°C. The Paris Agreement also acknowledges that many vulnerable peoples and communities are at increased risk as global climate patterns change and become more unpredictable. To accompany this historic event, religious leaders from around the world have signed an interfaith statement in support of the “full and ambitious implementation of the Paris Agreement and of all other decisions adopted at COP 21.” CEC President Rt Rev. Christopher Hill KCVO, DD is among the signatories, “People of faith and goodwill profoundly welcomed the Paris Agreement on climate change. But now implementation is necessary to give cash value to Paris. The world looks on expecting action.”
CEC has supported church action leading to the Paris Agreement, including a Pilgrimage for Climate Justice. It will continue this work, especially in the upcoming European Christian Environmental Network (ECEN) assembly in June in Helsinki.The statement underscores that caring for Creation is a shared responsibility and unites people in action for the good of the global family. “This agreement gives us hope that a change of mind is occurring in humanity. It needs to be seen in our actions—on the level of our governments, the big and small businesses, our communities and churches, and our own everyday lives,” remarked Fr Heikki Huttunen, general secretary of CEC and signatory to the interfaith statement. “We need to learn to see the world and its life as a whole: our treatment of the natural environment is not merely an ecological issue, it is in essence a moral issue.”

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Refugees: MEPs call for humanitarian response and overhaul of asylum rules

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 8 ottobre 2015

turchia-ist3The new scheme to relocate asylum seekers from Greece and Italy to other EU member states, dialogue with Turkey on cooperation to stem and manage migration flows, and budget measures to respond to the unprecedented refugee crisis, were among the topics tackled in Tuesday morning’s debate with European Council President Donald Tusk and Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker on the outcome of the 23 September informal EU summit.
MEPs regretted the European Council’s apparent lack of ambition to tackle the most serious refugee crisis since World War II. Some advocated reforming the Dublin rules (for determining which member state is responsible for handling asylum applications), opening legal migration channels and fighting smugglers criminal networks. Measures such as strengthening controls at the EU’s external borders and identifying, registering and fingerprinting migrants at the “hotspots” were also addressed in the debate.
Humanitarian concern for refugees as winter draws nigh
The humanitarian situation of refugees within the EU and neighbouring countries was the focus of a second debate with Commission First Vice-President Frans Timmermans and Luxembourg’s minister for relations with the European Parliament during the Presidency of the Council of the EU, Nicolas Schmit.
“The tough period is now, we can expect to see an increase in refugee flows before we are fully into the winter months. This is also a time when difficult decisions have to be taken to ensure the ‘hotspots’ are fully implemented and the budget is made available for the very EU responses the Council has committed to”, said the Chair of the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee, responsible for migration and asylum, Claude Moraes (S&D, UK). (full statement)
Migration will also be high on the agenda of the Justice and Home Affairs Council on 8-9 October and of the next European summit on 15-16 October.
Parliament and Council to co-decide on migration and asylum rulesThe European Commission’s current proposals under the co-decision procedure, on which Parliament and Council legislate on an equal footing, are for:a permanent relocation mechanism for asylum seekers within the EU – rapporteur: Timothy Kirkhope (ECR, UK),an EU common list of safe countries of origin – rapporteur: Sylvie Guillaume (S&D, FR),changes to the Dublin rules for determining which member state is responsible for processing applications for international protection of unaccompanied minors – rapporteur: Cecilia Wikström (ALDE, SE),a review of the EU Visa Code, including provisions on humanitarian visas – rapporteur: Juan Fernando López Aguilar (S&D, ES),a legal migration measure on entry and living conditions for non-EU students and researchers – rapporteur: Cecilia Wikström (ALDE, SE), andthe “smart borders” package, including a proposal for an “entry-exit system” to prevent overstaying in the EU, and thus irregular migration – rapporteurs: Agustín Díaz de Mera (EPP, ES), for the entry-exit system, and Tanja Fajon (S&D, SL), for the registered traveller programme (the Commission is expected to present a new “smart borders” package in late 2015/early 2016).

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EU helps developing countries to ensure sustainable fisheries and food security

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 2 ottobre 2015

europa-261011-cIn the frame of the European Year of Development 2015, October is dedicated to Food Security issues. See the short animated video about the co-operation of EU with developing countries in fisheries for the sustainable management of seafood resources that enhances food security and offers opportunities for trade and growth.The EU is committed to eradicate poverty around the world through focused funding and partnership agreements with developing countries that promote co-operation, mutual interests and mutual responsibility. See the short animated video about the importance of co-operation in fisheries for the sustainable management of seafood resources and the opportunities for trade and growth between the EU and developing countries.

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Civil society leaders speaking at a Our Voices press conference in Rome positively assessed the impact of the Pope´s Encyclical, “Laudato Si´

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 9 luglio 2015

vaticano“The Encyclical represents the most visible expression of the widespread increase in religious engagement of every major faith tradition around the climate crisis”, the Rev. Fletcher Harper, priest of the US Episcopal (Anglican) church stated. Coordinator of Our Voices, the interfaith global movement for climate action and executive director of GreenFaith, the US-based think tank for religion and ecology, Fr. Fletcher stated that “one recent example was the recent Multi-Faith Emerging Leaders Convergence in Rome (29 June to 1 July) organised by Our Voices to train 100 young faith leaders from 40 countries and all major faith traditions in advocacy and outreach on climate change issues, with strong emphasis on the Encyclical. The preceding large and widely reported interfaith climate change march on 28 June to St. Peter´s Square involved broad representation of both faiths and civil society movements, earning a much appreciated public welcome from the Pope after the end of his Angelus message”. “Fighting climate change is fighting poverty and injustice. All of us share the Encyclical´s impatience at the lack of progress in the UN climate negotiations. Decisive action is needed now, we urge world leaders not to miss the opportunity at the next negotiations in Paris in December. The growth of the climate movement in the faith community and more broadly has provided the kind of political cover that world leaders need in order to act.” According to Wael Hmaidan, Director of the 900-NGO Climate Action Network International the Encyclical set high standards for global political action. “Whatever comes out of the forthcoming high-level global meetings, such as the new Sustainable Development Agenda at UN General Assembly in September and the Climate negotiations in Paris in December, will be compared to the visionary nature of the Encyclical. This document makes clear what needs to happen to address climate change, which is to gradually and without delay replacing fossil fuels with sustainable solutions, especially renewable energies. Will the international political community be brave enough to commit to this vision?” Speaking for the Italian Climate Network, Dr. Federico Brocchieri, Coordinator of ICN’s youth section, said that the Encyclical would have “a very important role in increasing awareness worldwide, particularly in Italy. It may not have a direct impact on the UN negotiations, although it could help us measure how far the action taken by For more information contact: media@ourvoices.net | alex.price@ourvoices.net
governments in Paris will be in line or not with the targets set by science. Our organization undertakes a broad range of activities both to inform the Italian public but also to influence the outcome of the climate negotiations, participating in a major recent push by youth organisations for the concept of intergenerational equity to be included in the current negotiating text for Paris.” Josianne Gauthier, Director of the In-Canada Programs at Development and Peace
(Canada) said that “as the Encyclical makes clear, fighting climate change and poverty must go together. Our member organisations will be promoting it in their countries, and running a massive campaign, Create a climate of change. We in Canada will be campaigning this autumn to educate the government of Canada. CIDSE calls on everyone to effect a personal transformation and change of lifestyle. If the public demands something of government which is coherent with its personal choices, then surely politicians cannot ignore popular will. We are hopeful that change is possible, and happening: we have to hold on to the idea of humans being capable of doing good.” “The CIDSE network of 17 Catholic development NGOs, to which my organisation belongs, in partnership with the Holy See´s Pontifical Council on Justice and Peace organised a broad gathering of diverse catholic and non-catholic representatives as well as scientists on 2-3 July in Rome to celebrate the launch of the Encyclical.We see this document as a real call to action and prayer, especially for Catholics.” Isaiah Toroitich, Global Policy and Advocacy Co-ordinator of ACT Alliance (a coalition of 147 non-Catholic Christian NGOs active in over 140 nations) said that his alliance was focusing on advocacy activities relating to climate finance, adaptation, loss and damage and low carbon development. “We immediately welcomed the Encyclical in a press statement. We feel it gives us an additional moral and ethical imperative that supports our calls for equity and climate justice.” ” The document addresses the world community, it is an inspiration to all civil society to boldly ask for higher ambition from governments. The Holy Father called out powerful governments and businesses that seem to have been concealing the problem to show an honest and genuine commitment to address the issues.“ “We will continue referring to the Encyclical in our work, particularly in Africa at the forthcoming launch next month of the Mozambique to Kenya two-month bicycle pilgrimage involving many thousands of young people, supported by our Climate Change Ambassador, the Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa, the Most. Rev. Thabo Magkoba.“ The former senior climate change negotiator and Climate Commissioner of the Philippines, Yeb Saño, who now leads the Our Voices People´s Pilgrimage for Climate Action, culminating in his heading a 1500km/ 26-person walk from Rome to Paris starting on 30 September, envisions this activity “as a special journey bringing a rich tapestry of spiritual traditions from all over the world. The Pilgrimage pays homage to every community that stands up against climate change and shows resilience.” “Together we will have totalled 40,000 kms, or the equivalent of the world´s circumference: the Encyclical also has 40,000 words. As we reach Paris we will be joined by pilgrims from all over Europe while other pilgrimages will be happening across the world. Of course, it will doubtless take much more than our pilgrimage and civil society mobilisations to improve the outcome of the Paris negotiations compared to current expectations – we need a spiritual and ecological conversion on a planetary scale”.

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Trade agreements and data flows: Safeguarding the EU data protection standards

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 13 giugno 2015

BruxellesBruxelles Tuesday, 16 June, 10.00 – 12.30, room Paul-Henri Spaak (PHS) 3C050Several trade negotiations and trade agreements including services (TTIP, TISA, CETA) touch upon areas that have an impact on data flows between the EU and the partner country (e.g. financial services, telecommunications). To which extent do these negotiations respect the EU’s acquis on data privacy? What are the views of our trading partners on these issues? Which offensive and defensive interests are at stake? These are some of the issues to be addressed in a hearing jointly organised by the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee and the International Trade Committee on “Trade agreements and data flows: Safeguarding the EU data protection standards” on Tuesday, from 10.00 to 12.30.
The hearing, co-chaired by Bernd Lange (S&D, DE) and Claude Moraes (S&D, UK), will be divided in two panels, one on “Data flows, localisation and global value chains: offensive and defensive interests at stake”, and the other on “Data flows between the EU and partner countries: how to comply with the EU standards on data protection and fundamental rights?”. Hearing’s webpage

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