Daily Archives: April 12, 2008

Turkey’s midnight express hits ‘World peace’ hitch-hiker

An Italian woman artist who was hitch-hiking to the Middle East dressed as a bride to promote world peace has been found murdered in Turkey.

The naked body of Giuseppina Pasqualino di Marineo, 33, known as Pippa Bacca, was found in bushes near the city of Gebze on Friday. She had said she wanted to show that she could put her trust in the kindness of local people.

Turkish police say they have detained a man in connection with the killing. Reports say the man led the police to the body.

And all that happened in the supposedly western side of turkey near Istanbul imagine what’s going on in other parts!

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Cuban reforms

Recently announced agricultural reforms in Cuba could be the springboard for more changes, says a state newspaper. The official Granma newspaper also welcomes the lifting of restrictions in several sectors of the economy.

It will now be easier for state workers to own their homes and pass them on to their children. Wage limits are to be removed to allow more incentives. Raul Castro has introduced a series of reforms since taking over as president from his brother Fidel in February. These include the removal of some restrictions on the purchase of electrical goods such as mobile phones, microwave ovens and DVD players.

The state has also lifted a ban on its people staying in hotels previously reserved for foreigners – a measure which has only now been officially acknowledged in the latest edition of Granma. The housing reforms will mainly affect people who could lose their state housing when they retire; this includes military families, sugar and construction workers, doctors and teachers. According to government figures, about 85% of Cubans already have legal title to their homes, our correspondent adds. Buying and selling property is still not allowed, however.

The wind of change or the beginning of the end for the last revolution?

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Skopje to hold early election

Disappointing even their only allies the constantly failing US administration and George W. Bush, FYROM legislators have voted to dissolve parliament and hold early elections amid a row with Greece over the country’s name.

Greece correctly wants the former Yugoslav republic to change the stolen name that implies a territorial claim over its northern province of the same name, the historic Macedonia the country of Great Alexander.

Greece blocked Macedonia’s bid to join NATO a week ago over the name issue. FYROM Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski said opposition parties had been blocking his plans for reform. “We remain committed to our goals to join NATO and the European Union,” Gruevski said. “But the necessary reforms are halted with a blockade of parliamentary procedures.”

What remains to see is if the extremist voices will win and keep FYROM out of any legal institution like EU based on a lie or the logic and start serious negotiations with Greece.

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Zambia summit to tackle Zimbabwe

Leaders from Southern African nations are due to meet in Zambia to discuss the post-election crisis in Zimbabwe. Doubts remain as to whether Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe will attend.

Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC party claims it won presidential elections on 29 March but no official results have been released. UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown made his most scathing comments yet on Mugabe, saying he was “appalled” at signs of violence and intimidation.

It was time for the rest of the region to start doing something for the people of Zimbabwe!

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China-Taiwan meeting due

Chinese President Hu Jintao is set to hold a historic meeting with Taiwan’s vice-president elect, Vincent Siew.

It would be the highest-level meeting between the two sides since they split at the end of the civil war in 1949. The meeting is expected to be short one on the sidelines of a regional business conference on China’s Hainan Island. Mr. Siew is the running-mate of Ma Ying-jeou, who was easily elected as Taiwan’s president last month, promising better relations with China.

Is this a message that it will take 60 years till they do something, at least talk with Tibet?

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