“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.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Zambian president urged to protect workers at Chinese-owned mines

Newly elected president Michael Sata must back up rhetoric with action on labour rights, says Human Rights Watch

guardian.co.uk,  Associated Press, Thursday 3 November 2011

Michael Sata, who was elected president of Zambia in September,
has used anti-Chinese rhetoric in the past. Photograph: Jerome Delay/AP

Zambia's new president should back up his anti-Chinese rhetoric with steps to ensure workers at Chinese-owned copper mines are safe and adequately paid, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has said.

In a 122-page report the international rights watchdog said that despite improvements in recent years, safety and labour conditions at Chinese owned mines were worse than at other foreign-owned mines, and Chinese mine managers often violated government regulations.

Complaints about Chinese business practices in Zambia stretch back years. In 2005, an explosion at a Chinese-owned factory in northern Zambia killed 51 Zambian workers. Last year, two Chinese managers were accused of shooting coal miners during a labour dispute. The mine agreed to pay compensation to 13 injured workers and attempted murder charges against the managers were dropped.

Michael Sata, who won presidential elections in September, had for years tried to win votes by stirring up anti-Chinese sentiment. With copper prices booming and many Zambians grateful for Chinese jobs and investment, Sata, who had lost three previous presidential votes, toned down the rhetoric in his successful campaign. But he is still known as a champion of the poor.

"Sata's stated commitments to protect workers' rights are encouraging," HRW said on Thursday. "But simply demanding that Chinese companies improve their practices is insufficient if not accompanied by more effective regulation of the mines."

In Beijing, a foreign ministry spokesman, Hong Lei, said the report did not accurately reflect what was happening.

"The conclusions reached by Human Rights Watch are inconsistent with the facts," Hong said. He said Chinese companies had brought great benefits to Zambia and that systems were in place to protect the safety and rights of workers there.

Over the weekend, Sata held a lunch for Chinese businesspeople in Zambia, telling them previous governments had not done enough to make clear what obligations the Chinese should meet. Sata has appointed the former Zambian president Kenneth Kaunda as his special envoy to China.

"When you give the Chinese a project without specifications, don't blame the Chinese," Sata said at the lunch. "Blame yourself."

Sata has proposed more than doubling the minimum wage and tightening safety and other workplace regulations. HRW called for improvements at the government department that oversees mine safety, saying it lacked staff and money and was plagued by corruption allegations. The rights group also called for higher fines to be imposed for safety violations. It said there was reason to believe government pressure would work.

"There is no question that since first beginning operations, the Chinese-run companies have improved health and safety conditions as well as union relationships," HRW said.

It added that while Chinese companies were still much worse than other mining companies in Zambia, "the improvements make clear that there is neither an inherent link between Chinese investment and poor labour practices nor a complete inflexibility on their part. Indeed, they appear responsive to pressure from host governments and care greatly about their image."

HRW researchers interviewed 95 miners from the four Chinese copper operations in Zambia in November 2010 and July 2011. Researchers also interviewed 48 miners from operations run by other foreign companies, as well as Chinese managers, union and government officials, and medical workers.

Miners at Chinese operations interviewed by HRW described working 12-hour shifts exposed to acid, fumes and dust. They complained about not being compensated for overtime and receiving much lower pay than other foreign companies offer. Workers also said Chinese managers were slow to replace boots, hard hats, respirators and other safety equipment.

Workers said they were threatened with dismissal if they refused to work in dangerous conditions while outspoken union representatives faced retaliation. Workers' rights to join the country's main union were violated by Chinese managers, the report said.

Doctors and nurses in mining towns spoke to HRW of a surge in accidents since Chinese companies took over some mines. "While accidents are not unique to the Chinese-owned mines, union officials, miners who had worked in Chinese and non-Chinese operations, and even government representatives who spoke to HRW all said that the Chinese copper operations were the worst for health and safety conditions," the report said.

Canadian, Indian, South African and Swiss entrepreneurs are among those who invested in Zambian mines along with Chinese companies when the sector was privatised in 1997.

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