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  • Koshe Survivors Still Struggle

      Though it has been five months since the deadly garbage hill slide occurred in Koshe Open Garbage Dumpsite in Addis Ababa, survivors of the incident are still complaining about unfulfilled promises and harsh living conditions, The Reporter has learnt. Survivors told The Reporter this week that they have faced harassment from officials for sharing their current conditions to the media. “Previously, you came to us to hear about our problem,” a survivor, who requested anonymity, told The Reporter. “The fact that you came brought more problems and harassment from officials from the wereda.” “The officials came with a story published in your newspaper and harassed us for disclosing information to media,” the survivor said. “Because of the story, they stopped food rationing for almost two weeks,” the anonymous survivor claimed. A week ago The Reporter paid a visit to a temporary shelter, which also served as youth sport center. Even though the survivors were promised that they would get a house, close 90 individuals including women, children and the elderly are still living in the youth center. The people that were met by The Reporter expressed their fear and concern for sharing their conditions to the media. On the other hand, there were others who said that they are fed up with the conditions and that they do not fear of openly talk about what is happening. The Reporter observed that the people, who were originally arranged to live in two separate rooms, are now residing in a very congested fashion. In that regard, in one of the rooms, which is made of corrugated sheets, close to 60 people have been living since the tragedy. This room is shanty at best with the wind and rain creating unfavorable conditions to children who are exposed to the kiremt cold.
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  • The 9 most welcoming countries to raise a family in as voted by expats

      Moving to another country for a new job and life can be daunting. When you put children into the mix, finding the right home is even more difficult. 46% of expatriates around the world have children of their own but only 21% are currently raising their children abroad, according to expat networking group InterNations. The group conducted a survey of 3,000 families who live and work abroad and found that some countries are significantly more friendly towards new families than others. Switzerland, Russia, and Austria ranked as the least friendly countries towards families. Here are the 9 friendliest: 9. Turkey -- Expat families say this country is incredibly welcoming to children but rated it negatively for safety and security due to political instability. 8. Mexico --"Mexicans do not only welcome families with a friendly attitude, but expats in general," says InterNations. 7. Australia -- The country ranks highly for friendliness but does even better when it comes to leisure options available to children. Australia also ranks highly for work-life balance. 6. Greece -- The country is high in the rankings for friendliness but expats voted the country poorly across other subindexes, such as education options. 5. Thailand -- The Asian country comes in near the top for being incredibly welcoming to expat families. 76% of respondents also said that they feel positively about their children's health here. 4. Costa Rica -- This country is a favourite among expats in general for its low cost of living. 74% say they are "satisfied with the local leisure activities for their kids" and over 91% rate the friendliness towards children as positive. 3. Taiwan -- The country excels in everything from quality of life to happiness with personal finance situations. 97% of respondents also said they rate the country's attitude towards children positively. 2. Israel -- The country is popular with families, thanks to its high rating "with regard to education and health," says InterNations. 1. Uganda -- "Every single parent rates the friendliness of the local population towards children positively, and 68% are even completely satisfied with the warm attitude towards families," said InterNations. Read more

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  • Blast leaves dozens dead in Pakistan's Lahore

    At least 25 killed and scores wounded in a suicide attack claimed by the Taliban targeting police in the eastern city. The explosion took place near one of the city's largest office towers, home to a government-sponsored technology park [Arif Ali/AFP] Islamabad, Pakistan - A suicide attack targeting police personnel in the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore has killed at least 25 people and wounded scores more, officials say. The attack targeted police assisting in a drive to clear the Ferozepur Road, a main road in Pakistan's second city, of illegal construction and street vendors on Monday, provincial Law Minister Rana Sanaullah told media. The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) group claimed responsibility for the attack, confirming they used a suicide bomber on a motorcycle. Jam Sajjad Hussain, a senior rescue official, confirmed the death toll, saying that at least 52 wounded had been moved to nearby hospitals. The explosion took place near one of the city's largest office towers, home to a government-sponsored technology park. READ MORE: Deadly bomb blast targets census team in Lahore "It was a very loud noise for a split-second," said Zaair Hussain, a witness who was working in the building when the explosion occurred. "There are lots of police and ambulances surrounding the site." Read more

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  • Strike against new tax spreads to Ethiopia’s capital

    Owners of small retail shops in Africa’s largest open-air market observe strike against new tax ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia Owners of small retail shops in the Africa’s largest open-air market, located in Ethiopia’s capital, observed a strike on Monday against a new tax. A deserted view was witnessed at the Merkato market, in a clear indication that protests which started in small towns has spread to the capital Addis Ababa, with annual deadline for filing of annual tax returns fast approaching in mid-August. Earlier this month, Ethiopian government introduced a new tax, targeting businesses with an annual turnover of up to 100,000 Ethiopian birr ($4,300). "My income is very small. They (the authorities) estimate my daily income to be as much as 5,000 Birr ($214). I am diabetic... I spend much of the day sleeping. Where can I get that huge money from?" Fantu Bedaso, a retailer of grains who is in her late 60s, told Anadolu Agency. "I filed my complaints with the government, but to no avail," she said while sitting in front of her small shop. Many retailers in the area, not wanting to disclose their names or get filmed due to fear of government’s retribution, told Anadolu Agency that they are coming together to voice their concern in more organized manner. Read more

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  • 'Keys to kingdom' leaked by Sweden exposing military secrets and EU secure intranet

    Names, photos and addresses of air force pilots, people under witness relocation, SEAL team operators and more were leaked. Sweden's government has exposed sensitive and personal data of millions, along with the nation's military secrets, in what is now considered to be one of the worst government IT disasters ever. The leak, which occurred in 2015, saw the names, photos and home addresses of millions exposed. Those affected include fighter pilots of Swedish air force, police suspects, people under the witness relocation programme, members of the military's most secretive units (equivalent to the SAS or SEAL teams) and more. The leak occurred after the Swedish Transportation Agency (STA) decided to outsource its database management and other IT services to firms such as IBM and NCR. However, the STA uploaded its entire database onto cloud servers, which included details on every single vehicle in the country. The database was then emailed to marketers in clear text message. When the error was discovered, the STA merely sent another email asking the marketing subscribers to delete the previous list themselves. According to local reports, the value of data leaked was tantamount to handing over the "keys to the kingdom". IBM's Serbian branch was also allegedly contracted to operate Sweden's secure government intranet,  which in turn is connected to the EU's secure network STESTA. In other words, the EU's secure network was also exposed to those who gained access to the database. What is worse, those provided access to the database are allegedly foreign nationals in countries that are increasingly pro-Russia and anti-EU. "The net effect here is that the EU secure Intranet has been leaked to Russia by means of deliberate lawbreaking from high ranking Swedish government officials. Even if there are additional levels of encryption on STESTA, which there may or may not be, this has "should never happen" written all over it," said Rick Falkvinge of the privacy advocating organisation Private Internet Access. Read more

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  • Israel Removes Metal Detectors From Holy Site Entrance

    JERUSALEM — Israel began removing metal detectors from entrances to a major Jerusalem shrine early Tuesday morning to defuse a crisis over the site that angered the Muslim world and triggered some of the worst Israeli-Palestinian clashes in years. The Israeli security Cabinet had met for a second straight day Monday to find an alternative to the metal detectors, which were installed following a deadly Palestinian attack at the holy site. Associated Press photos showed a worker dismantling one of the devices at Lions Gate before 2:00 a.m. "The Security Cabinet accepted the recommendation of all of the security bodies to incorporate security measures based on advanced technologies ("smart checks") and other measures instead of metal detectors, Israel announced early Tuesday morning. It said the measure will "ensure the security of visitors and worshippers" at the holy site and in Jerusalem's Old City. It added that police will increase its forces in the area until the new security measures are in place. Israeli media earlier reported high resolution cameras capable of detecting hidden objects would be deployed. Israel erected the metal detectors after Arab gunmen killed two policemen from inside the shrine, holy to Muslims and Jews, earlier this month. The move incensed the Muslim world and triggered violence. The fate of the site is an emotional issue at the heart of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. Even the smallest perceived change to delicate arrangements pertaining to the site sparks tensions. Read more

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  • New Livestock Traceability System Launched

    nbsp;&   Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, July 25, 2017 – With the financial and technical support of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), through its Livestock Market Development activity, the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries today launched the Ethiopian Livestock Identification and Traceability System. Fully implemented, the system will help to gather information regarding source/origin of the animal, type of husbandry, and management system in place resulting in quality products for consumers and increased incomes of farmers. For the last two years, USAID, through a livestock sector market improvement pilot project worth $1.4 million (over 32 million Ethiopian Birr), has supported the ministry in establishing the system, which is required to make the Ethiopian livestock sector more competitive in accessing international markets. The Livestock Identification and Traceability system tracks animals using tamper-proof plastic twin ear tags. The tags capture relevant data regarding source of the animal, necessary measures in place to control and prevent occurrence of major animal diseases, and medical and diagnostic data necessary to ensure the animal’s health and the quality of its meat. All recorded data is stored in a central database server purchased by USAID, which is housed inside the ministry’s data center. The system will make it possible to improve the quality and quantity of the Ethiopian livestock and livestock products destined for export markets. “The system marks a turning point in the livestock sector of Ethiopia because animal identification and traceability are important factors for livestock market in today’s global market,” said Stephen Morin, a representative of USAID Ethiopia. “This traceability system will promote the growth of a commercial livestock sector capable of competing in both domestic and international markets.” USAID supported the ministry by providing day-to-day guidance on issues related to general legal framework development, animal identification and traceability systems development and on implementation of the system. To this end, USAID provided financial and technical support for an international exposure visit for relevant stakeholders to Namibia. USAID’s five-year Livestock Market Development activity is implemented as part of the U.S. Government’s Feed the Future initiative and contributes to the Government of Ethiopia Agricultural Growth Program to improve smallholder incomes and nutritional status in four regions of Ethiopia.

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  • The Khalid Adem Conundrum

     Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, July 25, 2017 -This is not a fiction. It’s an ugly truth of Khalid Adem, an Ethiopian, who imprisoned ten years in the United States of America for he falsely convicted of genital mutilation of his two years old daughter. His case was identified as “a high profile case of the first kind in the U.S.”, according to CNN, Atlanta media. A man who in 2006 became the first person in the United States to be convicted of female genital cutting was deported to his home country, Ethiopia, after serving 10 years in prison, the New York Times March 14, 2017 reported by quoting U.S’s federal authorities. After deportation to Ethiopia, Khalid Adem is writing a book which narrates the court process and the false witness of presented by his South African wife. Titled “Tears of Injustice”, is to be available on the market “after a month”, according to Khalid. “Adem, who had no criminal record, could have been sentenced up to 40 years in prison. He held his face in his hands and wept loudly after the jury’s verdict was read,” the Associated Press news reads. “Tears of Injustice is about a journey. This one man’s journey and a journey and a journey to the point at which our society collects facts, pass judgement, and not properly issue justice. The difference between right and wrong are disputable. Sometimes reasoning and circumstance blur the line between the two. This is exactly why, in matter that are unclear, we have justices system. A system divided by plaintiff and defendant held in court, before a jury of your peers, with a judge to bring order,” he wrote on a draft introduction of his new book availed to DireTube. On Saturday, July 22 late night Tadias Addis Show phone conversation Khalid disclosed that, “The conviction was totally a fabrication story of my former wife, whom we used to nag each other”. “I really miss my daughter Amirah Khalid, hope we’ll see her one day, if the goodwill of the almighty is there,” he put his optimistic opinion.  

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  • Ethiopia – Saudi Arabia amnesty expires: arrests, deportation looms

    A bilateral amnesty program between Ethiopia and Saudi Arabia in respect of Ethiopians illegally resident in the oil-rich Gulf nation expires today after a months’ extension elapsed. The process till this stage has involved the issuing of the initial 90-day amnesty – during which time authorities in Addis Ababa expressed worry over the slow rate of return. At a point there was a huge return then an extension of 30-days was granted. This effectively means that Saudi can now resort to forcible deportation and imprisonment of persons who failed to take the program and to return home. It is better if our citizens come back home before various problems arise seizing the opportunity they are given even in the remaining short period. The Ethiopian government helped facilitate exit visas for thousand of its nationals who were illegally resident in Saudi, most of them had gone to work as labourers. Figures indicate that there are about 400,000 such illegal residents but so far only about 60,000 of them have taken the amnesty program to return, the BBC’s reporter in Addis Ababa reports. Below is a brief timeline of events since March 2017. March 29, 2017 – Saudi Arabia issues a 90-day notice for all undocumented workers to quit the Kingdom. May 21, 2017 – Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn expressed worry over the refusal of nationals illegally resident in Saudi Arabia to return home despite a 90-day amnesty program. Desalegn said he feared that the Saudi government will resort to forcibly deport Ethiopians. He is quoted by the Ethiopia News Agency as saying, “the situation that made the Saudi Government forcibly deport our citizens is being created. Therefore, it is better if our citizens come back home before various problems arise seizing the opportunity they are given even in the remaining short period”. May 27, 2017 – The Ethiopian government said it had secured exit visas for about 40,000 undocumented citizens living in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The Foreign Affairs chief traveled to Saudi and held talks with officials in Riyadh. June 24, 2017 – Information Minister reported that 35,000 nationals had returned home on the program and that 85,000 of them had been granted exit visas at the time. He also disclosed that some returning citizens had taken other routes besides flying in. Assuring that those who left Saudi via ship and rail. Most of them are in neighbouring Djibouti and Sudan. June 28, 2017 – The Ethiopian government requested for an extension of the amnesty of the over 400,000 nationals expected back home, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said only 45,000 had returned home. June 30, 2017 – The extension requested by Ethiopia was granted by Saudi authorities – a further 30-days. Ethiopian Ambassador to the UK, Hailemichael Aberra confirmed the extension to the BBC on saying “Ethiopia is trying its best to welcome the people from Saudi Arabia”. “A taskforce has been established at several levels … 110,000 have been registered and the others are being encouraged to register to get their visas and come back home,” Aberra said. With the amnesty having expired today (Tuesday 25 July, 2017), Ethiopians who failed to return home will be forced back. They could also face detention and fines according to Saudi law. Ethiopia has one of the largest undocumented migrants in Saudi Arabia working as construction and domestic workers. Local media reports that a number of them have complained of inability to afford tickets to leave the country. The government sent envoys to help facilitate the repatriation via the national airline Ethiopian Airlines. This follows a similar campaign launched in 2013 that saw more than 2.5 million undocumented migrants leave the country. The move is part of Saudi’s national campaign to rid the country of the huge number of illegal migrants. Read more

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  • Conjoined twins facing early death to undergo surgery to seperate their heads

      The twins from Bangladesh are joined at the head and could die at any moment. Birth defects can at times result in heartbreaking stories of children suffering a terrible ordeal and even facing death at an early age. Cases of twins born attached to each other have been reported for the past several years, and at many of them have been known to cause severe consequences for the babies. Rabia and Rukia from Bangladesh were born with heads joined together and this poses a risk of them dying at an early age. The twins who face death at any moment finally have hope since they will be undergoing surgery to separate their heads. While their mother had a normal pregnancy, the parents didn’t have any idea about the twins being conjoined until they were delivered. While doctors said that they will have to wait for two years, the surgery coming early is a blessing for the girls born in July last year. Meanwhile the parents who are teaching at a local school made an appeal to the government for financial help since they couldn’t raise funds for the surgery. Read more

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