Libyan navy rescues over 200 migrants

first_imgLibyan navy rescues more than 100 immigrants FILE PHOTO:Mediterranean Sea. Rescue operation 20 miles of the coasts of Libya. (Photo by Fabrizio Villa “2013 Getty Images)”The Libyan Coast Guard on Friday rescued more than 200 migrants off the country’s western coast, the International Organization for Migration in Libya (IOM Libya) said.“Over 200 migrants were returned to Libyan shore by the coast guard,” the IOM Libya tweeted earlier Saturday.“While our staff are at the disembarkation point to provide needed emergency assistance, we reiterate that Libya is not a safe port,” said the United Nations Migration Agency in Libya.Libya has become a preferred departure point for migrants hoping to cross the Mediterranean Sea into Europe due to the insecurity and chaos in the North African country following the 2011 uprising that toppled former leader Muammar Gaddafi.The Libyan navy said it has rescued nearly 500 illegal immigrants off the country’s western coast over the past few days.“There are over 600,000 migrants in Libya, many of whom are in need of assistance especially as conflict continues,” the IOM Libya said. Libyan navy rescues 458 migrants off western coast Relatedcenter_img Libyan navy rescues 22 migrants off western coast FILE PHOTO:Mediterranean Sea. Rescue operation 20 miles of the coasts of Libya. (Photo by Fabrizio Villa “2013 Getty Images)”last_img read more

What ought to be done to improve Indian indentured Caribbean historiography?

first_imgThis is my final column on indentured immigration to Guyana. I do hope my write-ups on the topic over the preceding months have been informative and inspiring to readers. My larger hope is that the various symposiums planned during early March on addressing 100 years of indentured emancipation as well as how Indians have evolved since this time will be well-supported, well-attended and beneficial to Guyanese society at a time when ethnic divisiveness is at the deepest.I am pleased to announce that there have been some determinations or new developing trends in Indian indentured historiography in the Caribbean. Most notable is a peasant rebellion and resistance discourse against plantation power and dominance, which has essentially analysed indenture from the position of the labourers or from a non-elite perspective. This is an achievement we should be proud of since it underscores the urge of regaining the reins of our history.The general argument of the developing historiographical trends is that while Indians were abused by their overlords, they also used various forms of resistance techniques to improve their lives. They possessed the adaptive and adaxial capacity to deal with the throes of indenture, to speak back to the power holders of indenture, to look out for their unfortunate brothers and sisters of indenture, and to plan a better life beyond the institutionalisation of indenture.Likewise, Devi Hardeen argues that there are significant studies on the Black Atlantic, White Atlantic, and other Atlantic Studies but practically nothing on the Brown Atlantic, or brown people from India in the Caribbean. Hardeen asks for more macro-level analyses of Indian indenture. Do I agree? Absolutely! But when this will happen appears to be, in my judgment, an exercise in waiting.While the above new approaches are encouraging, the study of Indian indenture in the Caribbean must be supported by scholars and institutions in the field. One priority should be to tackle the problems of insularity and inconsistency not only within the discipline but also among writers of indentureship. The lack of comparative analyses of indenture, a concept common to other disciplines, should also be addressed. The spirit of community and cooperation in the study of indenture should be preferred rather than the preference for insular objectives.Academic institutions within the Caribbean, especially in Guyana, Trinidad, and Suriname with large Indian populations, must go beyond their current support and participation in the study of indenture. More young individuals should be encouraged through promotion, advisement, and financial assistance to study indenture. They should be encouraged to take field trips to various plantations as well as gravesites in these countries to reconstruct memories of indenture rather than relying solely on archival records. To be fair, the University of the West Indies in Trinidad, and to a lesser extent, the University of Suriname, has made some significant strides in the study of indenture under the leadership of most well-learned scholars in the field. The same cannot be said of the University of Guyana where the study of indenture has practically ceased.I argue that a revised and forward-looking programme for the study of Indian indenture can only be practical when actions match declared intentions and when policies match realities. So in this regard, a journal on indenture should be developed to go beyond the current scattered attention given to indenture in a few journals. Few individuals would argue against the thought that a journal of indenture based in the Caribbean would likely resolve the problems of indentured studies dispersed in various journals around the globe, which has become a nightmare for researchers and doctoral students to access even in the age of globalisation. Additionally, a clear focus of the journal will potentially relieve the burden of journal editors to reject submissions of articles on indenture on the basis that they are unsuitable for their journals. Moreover, it might also reduce the disappointment among writers on indenture who are unable to find a suitable place for their work.By any measurement, until there is a journal for indenture studies in the Caribbean, the field of indenture studies will most likely remain loose and uncoordinated, searching for a home. But more importantly, a journal of indenture studies will serve as a platform for rigorous debates, international engagement, openness, the introduction of new modes and models of thoughts and ideas, among other things. It might attract financial assistance through various international agencies and advertisements, which in turn can be used to set up an indenture fund for emerging students and scholars in the field. Of course, all of what has been discussed so far will not materialise without financial support. There must be first and foremost a radical approach of investigating what happened to the unclaimed remittances submitted to the colonial banks by deceased Indians during indenture. Retraction from this prerogative would reveal a shameful display, particularly from the perspective of our deceased ancestors, how little we have achieved and how far we still have to go. So far, the silence on this matter is frightening. These funds, if reclaimed, should be used wisely to study indentured servitude in the Caribbean, and hopefully, iron out some of the deficiencies in Indian indentured historiography.([email protected]).last_img read more

SA small-scale farmers take on hunger

first_img25 October 2013 The government has set aside R2-billion to support the Fetsa Tlala (End Hunger), President Jacob Zuma said at the launch of the food production initiative in Batlharos outside Kuruman in the Northern Cape on Thursday. Fetsa Tlala seeks to promote self-sufficiency by helping communities to produce food – including maize, beans, wheat, sunflower, ground nuts and potatoes – on communal and under-used land. The initiative aims to help small-scale and smallholder farmers put one-million hectares of land which has been lying fallow under production over the next five years, as well as to help small businesses process the crops once they have been harvested. Zuma said that Fetsa Tlala also aimed to shift perceptions about the importance of agriculture and farming in general, noting that agriculture was one of six job drivers – along with mining, tourism, the green economy, manufacturing and infrastructure development – identified in the government’s New Growth Path. Encouraging people to go back to farming “We are encouraging people to go back to farming. We are encouraging every household to develop a food garden. We want to see women’s co-operatives and community groupings focusing on vegetable production, livestock or chickens to earn a living and fight hunger and poverty.” Zuma said that, while South Africa’s overall food insecurity figure was declining, there were still families that lived in poverty. At the same time, the country remained a net importer of food. The worst poverty is concentrated in South Africa’s former apartheid “homelands”, which account for 13 percent of the country’s land and were home to half of the black population before 1994. “These areas have remained extremely poor and underdeveloped, and are heavily dependent on remittances from workers in industrial South Africa,” Zuma said, adding that South African agriculture continued to be characterised by a racially skewed distribution of assets, support services, market penetration, infrastructure and income. “Some 36 000 large-scale farmers control over 86-million hectares of farmland, while 1.4-million black farmers have access to about 14-million hectares of farmland.”Support, markets for small-scale farmers Zuma said there was a significant amount of land that still lay fallow in South Africa’s rural areas, some of which had been freed up through land reform. Smallholder farmers, communities and households would be given assistance in developing this land through the provision of mechanisation support, distribution and technical services. Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson, addressing a business breakfast briefing in Johannesburg last month, said her department had already brought 200 000 hectares of land under producbtion on seven province – the goal being one-million hectares by 2019. “Once the food is produced and harvested through Fetsa Tlala, we will then ensure that there is sufficient support for SMMEs [small, medium and micro enterprises] in the agriculture, forestry and fisheries processing sectors to mill the meal or pack the vegetables.” Joemat-Pettersson said the department would also work with the Department of Trade and Industry to establish markets for small-scale farmers, fishers and foresters. “This is no dream; it is already happening on the ground, where thousands of hectares have been successfully placed under production – some for consumption, and some for sale, stimulating local economies. “Government runs hospitals … we have the South African National Defence Force, school feeding schemes, and prisons. Smallholder farmers and producers should have a market in these organisations,” she said. “Government should be buying food straight from our smallholders and creating viable markets for them. This is what Fetsa Tlala is about. It is about unlocking the economies of rural areas.” Source: read more

Growth to make it easier to say ‘hola’ to Latin America

first_imgPhoto: Latam Getting around Latin America is set to become easier over the next two decades as a growing middle class ensures that air travel doubles.Plane maker Airbus is predicting the regions middle class will grow from $350 million people to 520 million by 2037.And as that happens, more and more Latin Americans will be saying hola! (or ola!) to air travel.The European aerospace giant says passenger traffic in the region has already doubled since 2002 and it is forecasting that trips per capita will increase from 0.4 in 2017 to almost 0.9 in 2037.There is also a changing in the mix of traffic with intra-regional travel growing faster in 2017 than the historic market leader, domestic traffic.Airbus says less than half of the region’s top 20 cities are connected by one daily flight creating a great potential for the region’s airlines to build intra-regional traffic”.The aviation “megacities” in Latin America  — Panama City, Bogota, Buenos Aires, Lima, Mexico City, Santiago and Sao Paulo — are expected to be joined by Mexico’s Cancun and Rio de Janeiro.READ: Latam launches major international expansion. The manufacturer  defines megacities as those with more than 10,000 long-haul passengers daily.In terms of aircraft, the Airbus Global Market Forecast predicts the Latin America and Caribbean region will need 2,720 new passenger and freighter aircraft valued at $US349 billion to meet the rising demand.This is almost double the existing fleet of 1420 aircraft and breaks this down into 2,420 small and 300 medium, large and extra-large aircraft.Of these, 940 will be for replacement of older-generation aircraft, 1,780 will be due to growth, and 480 are expected to remain in service. The result will be a fleet of 3200 aircraft by 2037.“We continue to see growth in the region’s air transport sector, despite some economic challenges,’’ Airbus Latin America and Caribbean president Arturo Barreira said at an airline forum.“With two of the world’s top 13 traffic flows expected to involve Latin America, and traffic expected to double, we are very optimistic that the region will continue to be resilient.“Also, with intra- and inter-continental demand rising, Latin American carriers will be in a very strong position to increase their footprint in the global long-haul market segment.”Separately, Airbus announced Tuesday that Europe’s easyJet had converted purchase rights for 17 A320neos to firm orders.The manufacturer said this took the budget carrier’s combined order for the NEO to 147, including 30 A321neos, and meant easyJet has ordered 468 A320 Family aircraft to date.“This repeat order cements easyJet’s position as the largest European operator of our leading A320 family,” said Christian Scherer, Airbus chief commercial officer.The aircraft are configured with 186 seats in a single class configuration and powered by Leap CFM engines.last_img read more