“Jasmine Revolution”
Symbol of peace: Flowers placed on the barrel of a tank
in very much calmer protests than in recent days in Tunisia

'The Protester' - Time Person of the Year 2011

'The Protester' - Time Person of the Year 2011
Mannoubia Bouazizi, the mother of Tunisian street vendor Mohammed Bouazizi. "Mohammed suffered a lot. He worked hard. but when he set fire to himself, it wasn’t about his scales being confiscated. It was about his dignity." (Peter Hapak for TIME)

1 - TUNISIA Democratic Change / Freedom of Speech (In Transition)

How eyepatches became a symbol of Egypt's revolution - Graffiti depicting a high ranking army officer with an eye patch Photograph: Nasser Nasser/ASSOCIATED PRESS

2 - EGYPT Democratic Change / Freedom of Speech (In Transition)

''17 February Revolution"

3 - LIBYA Democratic Change / Freedom of Speech (In Transition)

5 - SYRIA Democratic Change / Freedom of Speech (In Transition)

"25 January Youth Revolution"
Muslim and Christian shoulder-to-shoulder in Tahrir Square
"A Summary" – Apr 2, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Religion, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Intelligent/Benevolent Design, EU, South America, 5 Currencies, Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Middle East, Internet, Israel, Dictators, Palestine, US, Japan (Quake/Tsunami Disasters , People, Society ...), Nuclear Power Revealed, Hydro Power, Geothermal Power, Moon, Financial Institutes (Recession, Realign integrity values ..) , China, North Korea, Global Unity,..... etc.) -
(Subjects: Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" (without a manager hierarchy) managed Businesses, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)
"The End of History" – Nov 20, 2010 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll)
(Subjects:Abraham, Isaac, Ishmael, Muhammad, Jesus, God, Jews, Arabs, EU, US, Israel, Iran, Russia, Africa, South America, Global Unity,..... etc.) (Text version)

"If an Arab and a Jew can look at one another and see the Akashic lineage and see the one family, there is hope. If they can see that their differences no longer require that they kill one another, then there is a beginning of a change in history. And that's what is happening now. All of humanity, no matter what the spiritual belief, has been guilty of falling into the historic trap of separating instead of unifying. Now it's starting to change. There's a shift happening."

“ … Here is another one. A change in what Human nature will allow for government. "Careful, Kryon, don't talk about politics. You'll get in trouble." I won't get in trouble. I'm going to tell you to watch for leadership that cares about you. "You mean politics is going to change?" It already has. It's beginning. Watch for it. You're going to see a total phase-out of old energy dictatorships eventually. The potential is that you're going to see that before 2013.

They're going to fall over, you know, because the energy of the population will not sustain an old energy leader ..."

African Union (AU)

African Union (AU)
African Heads of State pose for a group photo ahead of the start of the 28th African Union summit in Addis Ababa on January 30, 2017 (AFP Photo/ Zacharias ABUBEKER)

Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela
Few words can describe Nelson Mandela, so we let him speak for himself. Happy birthday, Madiba.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Iraq parliament approves PM's anti-corruption plan

Yahoo – AFP, W.G. Dunlop, 11 Aug 2015

Iraqi protesters rally against corruption and poor services on August 7, 2015
in the holy city of Najaf (AFP Photo/Haidar Hamdani)

Baghdad (AFP) - Iraq's parliament on Tuesday unanimously approved Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's reform programme aimed at curbing the corruption and government waste that sparked widespread anger and weeks of protests.

Abadi on Sunday proposed a series of measures to combat graft, streamline the government and improve services after the protests and a call from Iraq's top Shiite cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani for drastic change.

But both Abadi's reform programme and an additional list of measures also approved by parliament only outline steps to be taken. Actually implementing them will be a difficult process fraught with potential political and legal challenges.

"It was unanimously approved," parliament speaker Salim al-Juburi announced to applause after the vote, which was held without a debate as soon as the plan was read in a session attended by 297 of 328 MPs.

Abadi issued a statement congratulating the Iraqi people on the passage of the plan and pledging "to continue the path of reform even if it costs me my life".

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi proposed a series of measures to combat 
corruption, streamline the government and improve services after weeks of protests
 and a call from Iraq's top Shiite cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani for drastic
change (AFP Photo)

Later in the day, the premier called in another statement for the country's anti-corruption body to present the names of those suspected of wrongdoing so they can be prevented from leaving the country and referred to the judiciary.

One of the most drastic of Abadi's reform proposals, which were approved by the cabinet on Sunday, was a call for the posts of vice president and deputy prime minister to be eliminated "immediately".

UN welcomes reforms

Abadi's plan also calls for an end to unofficial but prevalent "political and sectarian quotas" for senior officials, for increased oversight to prevent corruption, and for services to be improved.

Juburi had urged MPs to sign off on the reforms, but said that a "complementary" parliamentary reform plan was needed to add to and "adjust" Abadi's measures in keeping with the law and the constitution.

Iraqi lawmakers take the oath collectively during a parliamentary session 
in Baghdad on June 14, 2010 (AFP Photo/Ali al-Saadi)

That plan overlaps with Abadi's proposals on various points, while adding others.

New measures include calling for "negligent and corrupt" ministers to be presented for no-confidence votes, the "activation" of a law providing for the removal of excessively absent MPs, and limits of two terms for the premier, president and parliament speaker.

The parliamentary plan was also read and approved without debate, and the session -- most of which was taken up by the reading of the two plans -- ended some 30 minutes after it began.

The acting head of the UN Iraq mission, Gyorgy Busztin, said in a statement that he welcomed Abadi's reform proposals.

An Iraqi man listens on his portable radio
 to the speech of parliament speaker
Salim al-Juburi in downtown Baghdad on
August 11, 2015 (AFP Photo/Sabah Arar)
Busztin said that dissatisfaction over corruption "can be manipulated by terrorist groups for their own ends," at a time when the country is battling to regain ground from jihadists from the Islamic State group.

The approval is a victory for Abadi, but the question now becomes how thoroughly the measures will be implemented, and what politicians and other officials may do to try to thwart them.

Thousands protested

"All Iraqi politicians officially support reform and the fight against corruption but they all engage very heavily in corruption," said Zaid al-Ali, author of "The Struggle For Iraq's Future".

"They have to say that they support reform, but they will work against it."

Ali also said that removing the post of vice president would require an amendment to the constitution, a process that includes a popular referendum that is unlikely to be held at this time.

Iraqi men demonstrate in support of Prime 
Minister Haider al-Abadi's reform plan at 
Baghdad's Tahrir Square on August 9, 
2015 (AFP Photo/Haidar Mohammed Ali)
Amid a major heatwave that has seen temperatures top 50 degrees Celsius (120 degrees Fahrenheit), protesters have railed against the poor quality of services, especially power outages that leave just a few hours of government-supplied electricity per day.

Thousands of people have turned out in Baghdad and cities in the Shiite south to vent their anger at the authorities, putting pressure on them to make changes.

Various parties and politicians have sought to align themselves with the protesters' calls for reforms to benefit from the movement and mitigate the risk to themselves.

People have protested over services and corruption before, but the demonstrations failed to bring about significant change.

Protestors' demands were given a boost on Friday when Sistani, who is revered by millions, called for Abadi to take "drastic measures" against corruption, saying that the "minor steps" he had announced were not enough.

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