Thursday, February 21, 2019

'SWAPO Leadership Misled by Report'
News | 2019-02-20Page no: 1
by Sakeus Iikela
The Namibian
Photo: Peya Mushelenga

A REPORT presented to Swapo by urban and rural development minister Peya Mushelenga on the Okahandja Town Council is at the heart of the disputes between councillors and the party leadership.

Swapo's Otjozondjupa regional coordinator, Susan Hikopua, claimed yesterday that Mushelenga's report to secretary general Sophia Shaningwa misled her to reshuffle the Okahandja municipality's leadership.

Hikopua said this in an interview with The Namibian, following Monday's meeting which discussed the defiance of Rundu and Okahandja councillors.

She said Mushelenga's report was also discussed at a meeting chaired by president Hage Geingob.

Monday's meeting was called after Rundu councillors who were removed by Shaningwa last week threatened to take the party to court to challenge the recall.

Hikopua confirmed that the politburo will decide the fate of the councillors from the two towns.

She said Mushelenga's report contained “wrong information, which caused the feeling that it was better for us to now rotate the councillors, but that was rectified last night”.

However, Mushelenga denied this, saying the report had concrete information, and that the same information presented to Shaningwa was also submitted to his office by the Okahandja town management.

“The information I presented is the information I have in black and white that was also presented to my office,” he added.

The controversy about the report comes at a time when several senior party leaders are questioning Shaningwa's decisions which are backfiring on her.

The Namibian understands that Swapo's politburo met yesterday to discuss Shaningwa's decision to remove Rundu councillors.

The meeting also discussed the defiance by Okahandja councillors when they retained Johannes 'Congo' Hindjou as mayor, despite Shaningwa's orders to demote him.

It was unclear by last night whether the politburo would reverse Shaningwa's recent decisions, including the removal of Rundu councillors.

However, the online local newspaper, Namibia Daily News, reported yesterday that Geingob had revoked Shaningwa's decision to recall Rundu councillors.

The Namibian could not confirm this. The online media house also reported that: “Geingob was adamant that proper pronunciation on the matter will be revealed when the Swapo politburo meets next week”.

Shaningwa has been accused of not consulting grassroots' leaders on changes at town councils.

Political analyst Ndumba Kamwanyah agreed with these concerns, and said that the number of controversies in the ruling party could “easily be linked to Shaningwa's leadership style”.

He said: “I think it is time for her [Shaningwa] to reflect and ask herself tough questions”.

“Why are these things happening? Is it because of her approach? Or is it something beyond her control and the leadership of the party? That is what leaders do. Yes, there is a conflict, but it is also an opportunity for the leadership to reflect, and maybe change the approach on how they address some of these things,” he stated.

Kamwanyah added that the ruling party's top-down approach of imposing decisions on the people was not favourable.

“The reason for having structures in the party, for example districts and branches, is to enhance the voices of the people to participate in the democratic process.

“But when things are done through instructions from the top, there is a problem in terms of the democratic process within the party because it seems to me that it is a top-down approach. That approach to me does not work because people are going to revolt at one point, and that is what you are seeing with the councillors defying party orders,” he said.
Politburo to Decide Defiant Councillors' Fate
News - National | 2019-02-19
by Sakeus Iikela
The Namibian

SWAPO's politburo will decide whether or not to remove recently sworn-in Rundu and Okahandja town councillors from their positions for defying orders by secretary general Sophia Shaningwa.

Following the rebellion, Shaningwa summoned the councillors to a meeting in Windhoek on Monday.

The Namibian understands that the meeting resolved to maintain the status quo until a final decision is taken by the party's politburo. It is not clear when the politburo will meet over the issue.

Monday's meeting was called after Rundu councillors, who were removed by Shaningwa last week, threatened to take the party to court to challenge their recall.

Shaningwa last week removed three councillors from Rundu for allegedly defying party directives and voting for opposition party leaders at the town council.

Okahandja councillors on Friday also voted against the party's directive after they retained mayor Johannes Hindjou, despite orders to demote him to an ordinary councillor.

The councillors were then called to a meeting yesterday in Windhoek to explain why they had defied Shaningwa's directives.
Operation Transparency: Over 450,000 Illegal Foreigners Leave Angola
Luanda, ANGOLA, February 20 - The National Security Council has recommended to pursue the Operation Transparency which forced 453, 022 illegal foreign citizens to leave the national territory, from September 2018 to present date.

The information is contained in a statement released at the First Ordinary Session of the National Security Council held Tuesday, under the guidance of the President of the Republic and Commander-in-Chief of the Angolan Armed Forces (FAA), João Lourenço.

The Council found that the goals set through the implementation of the Multi-sector measures provided for in the Executive Operational Strategic Plan for Combat Illegal Immigration and Illicit Trafficking in Diamonds have been attained.

The Session analysed information provided by Lieutenant General Américo Valente, Coordinator of the Advanced Coordination Office of Operation Transparency, from September 2018 to February 2019.

The document clarifies that of the 453,022 foreign citizens who left the country, 35,884 were repatriated administratively, 416,496 left voluntarily and 842 transferred to Luanda for repatriation to their countries of origin.

Also, as the result of operation, the document mentions  159 Cooperatives and 289 Houses, involved in the illicit purchase of diamonds, as having been closed and the seizure of large monetary sums.

The source also quotes 34,480 carats in diamond and 121,783 precious stones as having been seized.

Some 178 backhoe loaders, 30 loader machines, 40 bulldozers, 18 earth moving machinery, 11 agricultural tractors, 346 light and heavy vehicles, 481 motorbikes and 31 bicycles, were also seized during the operation.

They include 123 dredgers, 87 washers, 511 motor pumps, 16 rafts, 98 pneumatic boats, 15 diamond detectors, 128 air compressors, 248 scales, 155 generators, 214 safes, 160 containers and 114 firearms.

The actions carried out under Operation Transparency continue to force the withdrawal of citizens involved in diamond smuggling.

The National Security bodies have dismantled and expelled national and foreign citizens dedicated to plundering of resources in the provinces of Malanje, Uige, Lunda Norte, Lunda Sul, Cuanza Sul, Bié and Cuando Cubango.

The operation was extended later to the provinces of Luanda, Bengo, Zaire and the sea, where, many immigrants, fleeing the diamond-rich areas, try to escape the effects of the Operation.

Four National Air Force aircraft supported the process, with transportation of illegal immigrants and the staff  involved in the Operation.
MoU with Mozambique a Milestone, Says Davies
Photo by Creamer Media
Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies

20TH FEBRUARY 2019
BY AFRICAN NEWS AGENCY

Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies says the memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Mozambique and South Africa on economic cooperation is a milestone.

Davies was speaking at a signing ceremony in Cape Town with his Mozambican counterpart, Dr Ragendra Berta de Sousa, who signed on behalf of his country.

The MoU will provide a broad basis for cooperation between the two countries, which will assist in finding new approaches and strategies of consolidating, expanding and deepening areas of economic development, investment promotion, industrial, trade and technical cooperation, the minister said.

“The signing of this MoU is a key milestone in our bilateral relations and cooperation for a number of reasons: it is a new generation type of an agreement that is based on a couple of new departures.

"The first one is that it is very much detailed about the level of cooperation and specifically identifies a number of infrastructure projects that we will be collaborating on. Secondly, it is time-bound as it will last for only five years after which it can be renewed,” Davies said.

He said also that the MoU was a perfect fit for the DTI's vision of investment-led trade into the rest of Africa and that a unit, Trade Invest Africa, was established to drive this initiative.

“Mozambique is a very significant trading partner for South Africa and we have a sizeable surplus with the country," Davies said.

"By building investment relations we are creating the basis for a more equitable and more balanced pattern of trade in line with our approach of positioning South Africa as a development partner on the continent.

"That is the basis on which we cement the whole of our sustainable and long-term trade and economic relations throughout the continent,” he said.

De Sousa said the MoU would go a long way in strengthening economic relations between SA and Mozambique and contributing to increasing collaboration, partnerships, trade and investment between the two countries.

Sectors that will be explored for cooperation under the MoU include agriculture and agro-processing; special economic zones and industrial parks; mining, processing and value-addition of natural resources; transport and communications infrastructure; pharmaceuticals; tourism; clothing and textiles; creative industries; and manufacturing.

Total trade between the two countries has remained strong over the past five years, increasing from R39.5-billion in 2013 to R50.8-billion in 2017.
Son of Mozambique's Ex-president Arrested in Graft Case
17 February 2019 - 08:29
BY AFP

Mozambique's former president Armando Guebuza. File Photo.
 Image: Johannes Myburgh / AFP

The son of Mozambique's former president Armando Guebuza was arrested on Saturday in a legal crackdown on suspects linked to a $2 billion government debt scandal, local media and judiciary sources said.

Ndabi Guebuza, the oldest of Guebuza's four children, was picked up from his home in the capital Maputo.

Maputo-based independent STV channel said he was arrested in connection with a government debt which plunged the country into its worst financial crisis.

"He is one of the eight arrested by order of the Attorney General," a judiciary source who asked not to be named, told AFP.

Mozambican authorities this week arrested seven other suspects, including businessmen and intelligence officials in connection with the debt scandal.

The scandal came to light in 2016, a year after the ex-leader Guebuza left office following a 10-year tenure.

It is alleged that while he was still in power, the government in Maputo had taken out loans amounting to $2 billion to buy a tuna-fishing fleet and surveillance ships, but hid the transaction from parliament and international donors.

An independent audit found that a quarter of the loan amount was diverted, and unaccounted for.

When the debt was revealed, Mozambique -- which is one of the world's poorest countries and relies on donor aid -- was plunged into the worst financial crisis in its history as donors froze contributions.

The United States alleges at least $200 million was spent on bribes and kickbacks, including $12 million for former finance minister Manuel Chang, who allegedly signed off the debt.

Chang, 63, was arrested at Johannesburg's O.R. Tambo International Airport on December 29 on a US extradition request over his alleged involvement in the fraudulent loans to state firms. He was denied bail on Thursday.

Ndambi Guebuza, who is a businessman, is alleged to have received $9.7 million in bribes, according to a US indictment.
Mozambique's Ex-intelligence Head, Chair of Three State Firms Arrested
15 February 2019 - 15:47
BY REUTERS

Mozambique's former finance minister Manuel Chang appears in court during an extradition hearing in Johannesburg on January 8, 2019. Five more people were arrested on Friday relating to the country's $2bn debt scandal.
Image: REUTERS/Shafiek Tassiem/File Photo

Five people, including the ex-head of Mozambique's intelligence services and the chairman of three firms linked to the country's $2bn debt scandal, have been arrested in Mozambique, a police source said on Friday.

The source said those arrested also included the ex-private secretary to former president Armando Guebuza, and that some possessions, including luxury cars, had also been seized.

"Acting on the order of the attorney-general's office ... we made the arrests of five people," the police source told Reuters by phone, without giving the reason for the arrests. "I cannot give you further details," he said.

Antonio Carlos do Rosario, former director of Mozambique's intelligence unit, was arrested alongside Teofilo Nhangumele, the chair of state-run Proindicus, Ematum and Mozambique Asset Management, the police source said.

Reuters was not able to immediately contact the representatives of the individuals named by the source as being arrested.

The three state-run companies are at the centre of a $2bn fraudulent loan scandal that has already led to arrests in Britain, SA and US.

The loans were guaranteed by the Mozambican government, but it did not disclose them, prompting the IMF and other donors to cut off support.

That triggered a currency collapse and debt crisis that Mozambique is still struggling to recover from.

Meanwhile a South African court denied former Mozambican finance minister Manuel Chang bail on Friday, one of his lawyers said, meaning he will for now remain in custody in connection with the same fraud case.

Chang, who denies wrongdoing, has been in custody in SA since December 29, when he was arrested on US charges related to his alleged role in the debt scandal.
Burundi, Somalia Call for Summit to Discuss AMISOM Troop Withdrawal
AFP

Burundi and Somalia have called for an emergency summit to discuss the contested withdrawal of 1,000 Burundian troops from the Horn of Africa nation before the end of the month.

The African Union is gradually scaling back its Amisom force in troubled Somalia, and announced late last year that the Burundian soldiers must leave by the end of February.

Burundi has strongly opposed the drawdown of its troops, a valuable source of foreign currency in the country, which has seen donor funding cut since a political crisis broke out in 2015.

“We agreed to call an urgent summit of Amisom troop contributing countries to review this decision,” Burundi President Pierre Nkurunziza said after an official visit by his Somali counterpart Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed.

Over to the African Union

A source at the AU, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the names of the soldiers to be sent back to Burundi had already been decided and would leave between February 21 and 26.

Burundi’s Foreign Minister Ezechiel Nibigira recently returned from Egypt where he secured the support of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who earlier this month took over the rotating presidency of the AU, a high-ranking source at the ministry told AFP.

Somalia appreciates Burundi’s contribution

Somalia’s president meanwhile praised the sacrifice of Burundi’s soldiers who were “among the first” deployed to the country.

The AU has a 21,500-strong force, Amisom, to support Somalia’s fragile internationally-backed government and fight Shabaab jihadists blamed for scores of bloody attacks.

The force is to be gradually scaled back as Somalia’s embryonic armed forces are trained up and deployed to replace them.

Burundi has the second-largest contingent in Amisom with 5,400 troops, after Uganda, which has 6,200 men. Other contributors are Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya.

Burundi has lost between 800 and 1,000 soldiers in Somalia.

Participation in Amisom is a valuable source of hard currency, and the scaleback is likely to have a big impact on Burundi — every quarter, the AU pays it around $18 million (15.7 million euros).
Is Ethiopia Mediating a Deal Between Somalia and Somaliland?
Daniel Mumbere
Africa News

The government of Somalia on Wednesday applauded Somaliland’s president Musa Bihi for his cooperation, after years of tension over sovereignty questions.

‘‘The FGS considers this move a progressive step in the right direction and applauds President Bihi’s commitment in this regard,’‘ read part of a tweet posted on the official Somali presidency account.

The tweet followed a meeting between Bihi and Ethiopia’s prime minister Abiy Ahmed in Addis Ababa.

Media reports had indicated that Somalia’s president Mohamed Farmaajo would join the two leaders, but this was not to be.

Instead both Abiy and Bihi discussed regional peace and integration, in addition to bilateral ties.

‘‘We discussed ways to strengthen the bilateral relationship and trade collaboration of the two countries,’‘ Bihi said in a tweet after the meeting.

FanaBC, which is affiliated to the Ethiopian government reported that Bihi had acknowledged Abiy’s efforts to consolidate regional integration and accepted the premier’s call to further strengthen the close working relationship between the Somaliland Administration and Federal Government of Somalia.

Somalia, Somaliland conflict

Somaliland declared unilateral independence from Somalia on May 18, 1991, but despite having its own currency, parliament, military and legal system, it is still under pressure to hold talks with Somalia.

It is regarded by the international community as an autonomous region of Somalia and not a sovereign state.

Last year, Somalia and Somaliland engaged in a war of words following the signing of an agreement to manage the latter’s Berbera port.

Under the tripartite agreement signed in March, Ethiopia acquired a 19% stake in the port, joining Somaliland and DP World of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) under a 30 year concession.

Somalia declared the agreement ‘null and void’ saying Somaliland had no authority to enter into international agreements, to which Somaliland responded by saying FGS had ‘declared war’.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Ethiopia PM Meets Leaders of Ex-Ogaden Rebels in Addis Ababa
Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban
Africa News

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on Tuesday held talks with leadership of the country’s former rebel group, the Ogaden National Liberation Front, ONLF.

Even though ONLF and the office of the Premier have yet to confirm the meeting, Harun Maruf, a VOA journalist who extensively covers the Horn of Africa said the meeting took place in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.

In Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed holds first official meeting with ONLF leadership delegation led by chairman Mohamed Omar Osman and six members of the executive committee, he said in a tweet.

It is the first meeting between the two parties since ONLF fighters and leaders returned to the country from their base in Eritrea.

The group in January lauded the efforts of the PM in restoring peace to the Ogaden region – i.e. the eastern Somali Regional State, SRS.

Abiy has also kept close contact with the region, officially meeting the regional president, Mustafa Omer, and president of the governing party, Finance Minister Ahmed Shide; to help resolve an intra-party friction.

The former SRS president Abdi Mohamoud and other top officials are currently the subject of judicial processes with charges of inciting violence and gross human rights abuse.
Joseph Kabila, DRC's Ex-president Who Loves to Drive Himself
Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban 
Africa News
19/02 - 10:36

Most former presidents across the world are taken care of by the state for the rest of their lives. Their housing, transport, salary even travel and general upkeep is the state’s responsibility.

Africa’s most recent ex-president is Joseph Kabange Kabila who it appears prefers to drive himself – maybe sometimes.

The most recent incidence of Kabila driving himself was last Sunday, February 17, when he met with his successor, Felix Tshisekedi. Kabila drove himself in an antique vehicle to the meeting and drove himself back.

Throwback to January 25, a day after he handed over – the first peaceful and democratic power transfer – Kabila left the presidential mansion but hopped into the driver’s seat of a pickup and drove off, as security detail followed in another vehicle.

Kabila was president of the Democratic Republic of Congo, DRC, for eighteen years till in late January 2019 when he handed over to Tshisekedi.

In the run up to the elections, Kabila had also been cited driving himself to a series of meetings. He won two disputed elections and overstayed his tenure by two years citing inability to hold a poll to replace him.

Political watchers say Kabila is likely to stage a return to the presidency given that the law allows him to contest for the seat after serving his two terms and leaving.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Anti-Slavery Campaigns in Britain and Their Impact on the Formation of the United States
The leaders of the 18 th century separatist movement from England were not motivated by a
genuine desire for freedom and equality

By Abayomi Azikiwe
Editor, Pan-African News Wire
African American History Month Series No. 2
Wednesday February 13, 2019

If the so-called American Revolution of 1776 was truly committed to breaking with monarchical
and autocratic rule from the United Kingdom then why did slavery grow at a rapid rate after the
achievement of independence of the former 13 colonies in North America?

This is an important political question since even in the 21st century there are repeated
references by elected officials in both houses of Congress, the White House and the Supreme
Court to the “Founding Fathers” and “Framers of the Constitution.” What is not mentioned by
these career politicians and lifetime jurists is that many of the authors of the U.S. Constitution
were large-scale slave owners themselves.

These wealthy landowners and slave masters did not see any reason to liberate the more than
700,000 Africans living in the former colonies by the conclusion of the 1780s. The existence of
slavery was quite profitable and with the discovery of the cotton gin in 1793, the expansion of
involuntary servitude across the South and extending further west empowered the planters to
the point where as a result of the Constitutional Convention of 1787 they were able to
dominate the House of Representatives through a provision declaring that enslaved Africans
could be counted as three-fifths of a person.

In an article published by Paul Finkelman of the Albany Law School in New York: “The three-
fifths clause provided the extra proslavery representatives in the House to secure the passage
of the Missouri Compromise of 1820 (bringing Missouri in as a slave state); the annexation in
1845 of Texas, which was described at the time as an ‘empire for slavery’; the passage of the
Fugitive Slave Act of 1850; the law allowing slavery in Utah and New Mexico; and the passage of
the Kansas-Nebraska Act in 1854 (which opened the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain
territories to slavery). None of these laws could have been passed without the representatives
created by counting slaves under the three-fifths clause.” (https://www.theroot.com/three-
fifths-clause-why-its-taint-persists-1790895387)

Some Aspects of the Anti-Slavery Movement in Britain in the Late 18th Century

While the descendants of the British colonialists were divorcing themselves from the Crown, a
burgeoning anti-slavery movement was taking hold in England. London was the largest center
of the Atlantic Slave Trade where enormous profits earned from the exploitation of African
labor was set to spawn the rise of industrial capitalism in the 19 th century.

An important episode in the history of jurisprudence related to the legal basis for African
enslavement was the case of Somerset v. Stewart which was heard and decided in London
during 1772. James Somerset was an African purchased in Virginia and held by a Scottish
merchant and customs officer.
(http://www.ouramericanrevolution.org/index.cfm/page/view/m0149)

Somerset was brought from Virginia to England by Charles Stewart with the intent to continue
his enslavement. Somerset fled from captivity and was later imprisoned. He filed suit in the
British courts demanding his freedom based upon the lack of sufficient English law recognizing
slavery within the unwritten constitution.

Although there were codes under British customary law which reinforced slavery, the courts
found that there was no legal basis for the ownership of Somerset by Stewart. The although
narrow ruling was not intended to free enslaved Africans from bondage it provided the impetus
for the abolitionist movement in both Britain and what later became known as the U.S.

A summary of the ruling states that: “In a decision handed down by William Murray, Baron
(later Earl) of Mansfield and Chief Justice of the Court of King's Bench, the court narrowly held that ‘a master could not seize a slave in England and detain him preparatory to sending him out
of the realm to be sold’ and that habeas corpus was a constitutional right available to slaves to
forestall such seizure, deportation and sale because they were not chattel, or mere property,
they were servants and thus persons invested with certain (but certainly limited) constitutional
protections.”
(http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/pathways/blackhistory/rights/slave_free.htm)

The decision was hailed by the African population and anti-slavery proponents in Britain.
Granville Sharp, a staunch advocate for the elimination of slavery had taken up the case on
behalf of Somerset advising his lawyers on the arguments put forward in the case.

Sharp had written a tract in 1769 entitled “A Representation of the Injustice and Dangerous
Tendency of Tolerating Slavery”, considered a foundational publication of the abolitionist
movement of the 18 th century. Gaining a reputation through the Somerset Case and previous
attempts at freeing enslaved Africans, Sharp was approached by Olaudah Equiano in 1781 to
seek his support in exposing the Zong massacre.
(https://www.britannica.com/biography/Granville-Sharp)

Equiano, also known as Gustavus Vassa, wrote in his autobiography that he was captured in
West Africa in the region now known as southeast Nigeria. He would be taken to Virginia where
he worked to purchase his own freedom. Later he would be a co-founder of the Sons of Africa,
an organization of emancipated people in Britain committed to the elimination of slavery.
(http://abolition.e2bn.org/people_25.html)

The Zong was a British slave ship from Liverpool which captured 400 Africans setting sail later
from Accra in West Africa. While traveling to the Caribbean island of Jamaica, many of the
people on board were sickened including both European sailors and enslaved Africans.

After the deaths of 70 slaves and sailors on board, the captain Luke Collingwood authorized the
throwing of Africans overboard resulting in the brutal deaths of another 133 people. This was
done for the purpose of collecting insurance on the enslaved. The incident was widely
publicized and consequently mobilized the Free African community and abolitionist movement
in Britain.

Claims for the payment of the insurance were denied by the Baron of Mansfield who had ruled
in the Somerset decision. Nonetheless, despite gallant attempts by abolitionists, the European
crew was never convicted of murder. The ruling in the case said the killing of Africans was
warranted under such circumstances as the purported lack of water, food and the prevalence
of disease.

An historical website, blackpast.org, said of those in authority related to the attempt to
prosecute the responsible individuals: “Great Britain’s The Solicitor General, Justice John Lee,
however, refused to take up the criminal charges claiming ‘What is this claim that human
people have been thrown overboard? This is a case of chattels or goods. Blacks are goods and
property; it is madness to accuse these well-serving honorable men of murder… The case is the
same as if wood had been thrown overboard.’” (https://www.blackpast.org/global-african-
history/zong-massacre-1781/)

Just a decade later after the acquittal of the perpetrators of the Zong massacre, Captain John
Kimber was placed on trial for the torture and murder of an African woman aboard the slave
ship Recovery. Through the efforts of the abolitionists in Britain, Kimber was brought before the
court, even though he was not convicted.

These developments illustrated the inherent racism within the British legal system. Such
occurrences prompted the persistence of the anti-slavery campaigns. Africans such as Equiano
and Ottobah Cugoano through the Sons of Africa grouping spread the consciousness related to
the humanity of Black people. (https://face2faceafrica.com/article/sons-of-africa-the-early-
political-group-formed-in-the-1700s-by-freed-slaves-in-london)

The Sons of Africa worked closely with the Society for the Abolition of the Slave Trade. Thomas
Clarkson, a co-founder of the Society, along with ten other anti-slavery advocates, persuaded
parliamentarian William Wilberforce to introduce legislation demanding the end to human
bondage. However, it would take decades of work to bring about the abolition of slavery in the
British Empire.

Cugoano was kidnapped by the British in the West Africa region of today’s Ghana in 1770 being
taken to England. He would win his emancipation and publish a book in 1787 entitled:
“Thoughts and Sentiments on the Evil and Wicked Traffic of the Slavery and Commerce of the
Human Species.” (http://abolition.e2bn.org/people_26.html)

As opposition to slavery increased through political actions along with mass rebellion, the
British parliament would pass the Slave Act of 1788 and Amelioration Act of 1798 related to the
treatment of Africans in bondage under the control of England. Later in 1807, the British
parliament would pass the Slave Trade Act, ostensibly outlawing the transatlantic trade. The
trade would continue illegally and the domestic production and trade in enslaved Africans
satisfied the demands for unpaid labor within the growing cotton plantations of the southern
U.S. Later in 1833 the Slavery Abolition Act was passed by the British parliament. Nevertheless,
Africans in the Caribbean were forced to undergo a period of apprenticeship leading to years
more of virtual enslavement and consequent rebellion.

Other events such as the Haitian Revolution against France from 1791-1803 resulted in the
founding of a Black Republic in the Caribbean, heightened the fears of the slave owning class
which maintained its political advantage through the American legislative system. It would take
a series of slave rebellions in the U.S. from 1800 through 1859 to escalate the intransigence of
the planters provoking their secessionist ambitions leading to a civil war from 1861-1865, which
created the conditions for the legal abolition of African slavery in the U.S.
(https://www.questia.com/library/7253938/american-negro-slave-revolts)

The Legacy of Slavery Extends Into the 21 st Century

African American historian Gerald Horne published a study on the impact of the anti-slavery
movement in Britain and the motivations for independence by the founders of the U.S. during
the late 18 th century. The book entitled: “The Counter-revolution of 1776: Slave Resistance and
the Origins of the United States of America”, advances a thesis which conflicts with the
conventional assumptions fostered by the educational system related to the separation of the
13 colonies from Britain.

An abstract of the Horne research project released in 2014 says: “Prior to 1776, anti-slavery
sentiments were deepening throughout Britain and in the Caribbean, rebellious Africans were
in revolt. For European colonists in America, the major threat to their security was a foreign
invasion combined with an insurrection of the enslaved. It was a real and threatening
possibility that London would impose abolition throughout the colonies—a possibility the
founding fathers feared would bring slave rebellions to their shores. To forestall it, they went
to war.” (https://nyupress.org/books/9781479893409/)

154 years since the legal abolition of involuntary servitude in the U.S., the descendants of
Africans formerly enslaved are still facing national oppression and economic exploitation. Today
the criminal justice structures serve as the principal mechanism of social containment and
institutional repression. Inevitably it will take a revolutionary struggle to complete the genuine
emancipation of the African people in America.
400 Years (1619-2019) After the Beginning of African Enslavement in the British Colony of
Virginia
Six months from now a commemoration of the long saga of struggle against national
oppression and economic exploitation

By Abayomi Azikiwe
Editor, Pan-African News Wire
African American History Month, Series Number One
Commentary

In late August of 1619 approximately twenty Africans were brought to the shore of Jamestown
Settlement in Virginia, then a colony of Britain, having been captured by Portuguese colonizers
in the Ndongo and Kongo kingdoms (in the vicinity of modern day Angola, Republic of Congo-
Brazzaville and the Democratic Republic of Congo) and then stolen again in route to Vera Cruz
on the coast of Mexico by British traders operating a warship flying a Dutch flag for the purpose
of labor exploitation.

After being marched 100-200 miles from inland West-Central Africa, the 350 captives were
loaded at the slave-port of Luanda on to the vessel San Juan Bautista. The British traders
attacked the San Juan Bautista near its destination and took 50-60 Africans placing them on the
White Lion and Treasurer ships directed towards Virginia where these vessels initially landed at
Point Comfort (Hampton today). (https://historicjamestowne.org/history/the-first-africans/)

It has been reported that the majority of Africans arriving on the White Lion were acquired by
wealthy British planters including Governor Sir George Yeardley and Abraham Piersey. At this
time there appeared to have been no specific laws related to enslavement in the colony.

Nonetheless, these Africans could not have been considered as indentured servants since after
1640 their terms of enslavement were extended. By 1660 in Virginia the slave status of Africans
brought to the colony for the purpose of servitude was made permanent.

The Treasurer, which arrived at Point Comfort several days later in August 1619, possibly
unloaded seven to nine Africans, and quickly left setting sail to the Caribbean island of
Bermuda. Records kept by British colonialists indicate that by March 1620, 32 Africans were
living in the colony of Virginia scattered throughout homes and plantations around the James
River Valley.

Over the next century-and-a-half when the European inhabitants of the 13 British colonies
revolted against colonial rule and established the United States (1776-1783), the first census
taken in 1790 revealed that nearly 700,000 Africans were living in slavery. The former colonies
which had the largest number of enslaved Africans were four states which had more than
100,000 people in bondage in 1790: Virginia (292,627); South Carolina (107,094); Maryland
(103,036); and North Carolina (100,572).

By 1860 on the eve of the Civil War (1861-1865) nearly four million Africans were living in
slavery while some 500,000 were considered legally free. Most of these free Africans were still
subjected to national oppression and racial discrimination many being denied the right to vote
and own property, with some exceptions.

Of course African slavery can be traced back even further in the region now known as North
America. The Spanish colony of Florida engaged in this economic system dating back until at
least 1563. (https://legacy.lib.utexas.edu/taro/utcah/02980/cah-02980.html#a0)
Spain and Portugal were the first two European states to engage in the capturing and
enslavement of Africans dating back to the 15 th century. According to one source: “Just as
Castilian concessions in 1479 helped put Isabel on the throne of Castile, similar recognition of
Portuguese claims in Africa in 1494 helped to secure Spanish interests in the Americas. As a
result, it was Spain, rather than Portugal, that first made extensive use of enslaved Africans as a
colonial labor force in the Americas.”
(http://ldhi.library.cofc.edu/exhibits/show/african_laborers_for_a_new_emp/the_spanish_and
_new_world_slav)

Slavery, Colonialism and the Destruction of Black Civilizations

Africans were not brought to the Americas as enslaved persons. There have been many studies
which document the existence of civilizations and high cultures which refute the attempts to
justify European domination through unscientific claims of inherent inferiority.
(http://www.centerformaat.com/files/African_Origin_of_Civilization_Complete.pdf)

All along the West and East coasts of the continent into the interior there was the consolidation
of kingdoms, city-states and nation-states. Many of these civilizations are popularly known as
Ghana, Mali, Songhay, Ile-Ife, Kongo, Ndongo in the west and central interior extending north
and east into Nubia, Egypt, Axum, the Swahili Coast, Zanzibar, Mutapa (Zimbabwe), Zululand,
Basutoland, etc. (https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/326812/africans-and-their-
history-by-joseph-e-harris/9780452011816/)

The Atlantic Slave Trade represented the beginning of the systematic destabilization of African
societies. Resistance to enslavement and colonization was a consistent theme within African
history from the 15 th to the 19 th centuries. (https://searchworks.stanford.edu/view/1682348)
It would take four centuries of European capitalist intervention to set the stage for widespread
colonial rule across the continent. During this period long established kingdoms and cultures
were decimated which dislocated millions setting the stage for further exploitation and
oppression.

Eric Williams documented that the link between the transformations of mercantilism into
industrial capitalism was dependent upon the profits accrued from the slave trade. In the areas
of banking, commerce, shipping and mass production of commodities the burgeoning economy
of Britain would lay the foundation for industrial capitalism on a monopoly scale.
(https://archive.org/stream/capitalismandsla033027mbp/capitalismandsla033027mbp_djvu.txt

Inside the U.S. itself the rise of the cotton industry fueled the capitalist production outlets in
the northern non-slave holding states after the early 19 th century, intensifying the demand for
slave labor supplied by the African people. W.E.B. Du Bois wrote on the indispensable role of
African labor in the building of the U.S. into an industrial power by the conclusion of the Civil
War. (http://ouleft.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/blackreconstruction.pdf)

With the aftermath of the eras of slavery and colonialism, Africa was placed in a position of
dependency in regard to the imperialist system. The international division of labor, trade and
economic power was controlled by the Western European states and the U.S. Walter Rodney
addressed both the character of African societies and their impact by imperialist nations. The
development of Europe was a direct result of the exploitation of Africa.
(http://abahlali.org/files/3295358-walter-rodney.pdf)

National oppression required a repressive state apparatus to ensure the perpetuity of the
capitalist system. Even after the conclusion of the Civil War and a brief period of
Reconstruction, violent attacks on the African American people both judicially and extra-
judicially, were designed to keep the former enslaved in line with the objective of the
exploitative system.

“The Red Record: Tabulated Statistics and Alleged Causes of Lynching in the United States”
written by anti-lynching crusader and journalist Ida B. Wells-Barnett in 1895 represented the
first social scientific study of the phenomenon of state-sanctioned racial terrorism directed
against African Americans during the post-Civil War years through the later decades of the 19 th
century. Thousands of African Americans were lynched in these years and this level of
repression and brutality continued into the first half of the 20 th century.
(https://archive.org/stream/theredrecord14977gut/14977.txt)

Even today in the 21 st century, African Americans are disproportionately incarcerated in penal
institutions, they are affected way out of proportion to their presence in the general population
by police brutality and other forms of bigoted violence by hostile forces, as well as suffering
from the ravages of the capitalist system in the modern period where the gap between rich and
poor inside the U.S. and the world is widening.

2019: The Year of Return

Acknowledgements of the 400 th anniversary of the enslavement of Africans in Virginia have also
been recognized by the West African state of Ghana where many people were captured and
taken into bondage. The current President of the country, Nana Akufo-Addo, has welcomed
Africans in the Diaspora to visit and even relocate to Ghana this year.

This is by no means a novel idea. The founder of modern Ghana, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, who was
the first Leader of Government Business, Prime Minister and President of the First Republic
from 1951-1966, maintained an open door policy towards Africans born in the West.

One fundamental distinction under the Nkrumah government was that it was categorically
committed to the realization of Pan-Africanism by the establishment of a continental
government. Nkrumah was also a socialist and anti-imperialist realizing that the acquisition of
national independence was only the first step in bringing about the total liberation, unification
and social emancipation of Africans. Moreover, that this movement towards the socialist
unification of Africa was part and parcel of the world movement against imperialism.

A historical correction of the social impact of centuries of slavery, colonialism and neo-
colonialism requires much more than a symbolic gesture. Africans both on the continent and in
the Diaspora are still being subjected to capitalist exploitation.

In fact the world economic system remains a reflection of the material legacy of the rise and
dominance of European imperialism over the last six centuries. This current international
situation requires a fundamental shift in the nature of global relations along with the creation
of structures which can guarantee freedom and justice for those victimized by institutional
oppression and exploitation.
Cote d’Ivoire Western-backed Neo-Colonial President Says Someone Responsible for Election Deaths
Former Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo was ousted by
French imperialism and recently acquitted by the
dreaded ICC in the Netherlands.
AFP
2019/2/11 20:03:40

Cote d'Ivoire's President Alassane Ouattara has refused to comment on the acquittal on crimes against humanity of his predecessor Laurent Gbagbo at the International Criminal Court (ICC) while insisting investigations would continue.

"No reaction from me, it's an ongoing trial," Ouattara said in an interview with Radio France International in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa where he was attending an ­African Union summit.

But he added, "Someone must be responsible for the 3,000 deaths. I hope that justice will shine a light on that. It is what the victims are asking for."

ICC judges acquitted Gbagbo and his aide Charles Ble Goude on charges stemming from a wave of violence after disputed elections in the west African nation in 2010.

More than 3,000 people died on both sides of the Cote d'Ivoire conflict after Gbagbo refused to concede defeat to Ouattara, his internationally backed rival.

Gbagbo, the first former head of state to stand trial at the ICC, is currently living in Belgium under conditions pending a possible prosecution appeal following the acquittal on January 15.

He had been held in the Netherlands since 2011.

The ICC's unwillingness to let Gbagbo return to Cote d'Ivoire is thought to have been linked to the country's refusal to surrender Gbagbo's first wife, Simone, despite an outstanding ICC warrant for her arrest for her role in the post-election violence.
Africa's Working-age Population to Reach a Billion by 2030 Amid Rising Jobless Rate: Report
Xinhua
2019/2/11 14:44:27

File photo shows people taking part in a demonstration along the streets of Addis Ababa, capital of Ethiopia, Jan. 17, 2018. (Xinhua/Michael Tewelde)

Africa's working-age population is expected to rise from 705 million in 2018 to nearly 1 billion by 2030, leading to higher unemployment in the continent, according to new report published by the African Development Bank (AfDB).

The African Economic Outlook 2019, which was launched on Friday on the margins of the 32nd African Union (AU) summit at the AU headquarters in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, said the African continent would add about 295 million new working-age population by the year 2030, pushing the continent's working-age population up by 40 percent.

"As millions of young people join the labor market, the pressure to provide decent jobs will intensify," the report said.

At the current pace of labor force growth, the report said, the African continent "needs to create about 12 million new jobs every year to prevent unemployment from rising."

"If current trends continue, only half of new labor force entrants will find employment, and most of the jobs will be in the informal sector," the report said. "This implies that close to 100 million young people could be without jobs."

The report also stressed that the rapid growth achieved in Africa in the past two decades "has not been pro-employment."

Strong and sustained economic growth is necessary for generating employment, but that alone is not enough, the report said, stressing that the source and nature of growth also matter.

The report, which also analyzed Africa's current macroeconomic performance and future prospects, said that after "tepid" real GDP growth of only 2.1 percent in 2016, Africa's economy recovered with a 3.6 percent growth in 2017 and a 3.5 percent growth in 2018.

African economies are also projected to pull the continent's average growth up to 4 percent in 2019 and 4.1 percent in 2020. The projected growth is said to be higher than other emerging and developing economies as a whole, but lower than the economic growth of China and India, the report said.

According to the report, 40 percent of African countries are projected to see growth of at least 5 percent in 2019.

The report, however, stressed that the challenge for African economies "is to achieve a higher growth path that is inclusive and pro-employment."

Current and future projected economic growths are "not fast enough to address persistent fiscal and current account deficits and unsustainable debt," the report said.

The 2019 African Economic Outlook also indicated that Africa's macroeconomic and employment outcomes are better when industry leads growth, saying that "industrialization is a robust pathway to rapid job creation."

The report pointed to five trade policy actions that "could bring Africa's total gains to 4.5 percent of its GDP, or 134 billion U.S. dollars a year."

Eliminating all of today's applied bilateral tariffs in Africa, keeping rules of origin simple, flexible, and transparent, removing all non-tariff barriers on goods and services trade on a most-favored-nation basis, implementing the World Trade Organization's Trade Facilitation Agreement to reduce the time it takes to cross borders and the transaction costs tied to non-tariff measures, are among the five trade policy actions that would revive the continent's economic growth in the near future.

Negotiating with other developing countries to reduce by half their tariffs and non-tariff barriers on a most-favored-nation basis is another important trade policy element recommended to uplift the continent's growth.

The African Economic Outlook, published yearly by the African Development Bank, highlights economic prospects and projections for the continent as a whole and for each of the 54 countries.

This year's theme, "Integration for Africa's Economic Prosperity," is said to be in line with the AU's mission toward promoting sustainable development at the economic, social and cultural levels as well as the integration of African economies.
Chinese A shares a ‘Haven’ for Overseas Investors
By Xie Jun and Chu Daye
Global Times
2019/2/19 20:28:40

Opening-up yields vast opportunities for foreign capital: analysts

Investors track stock prices on big screens at a local brokerage firm in Nanjing, capital of East China's Jiangsu Province on Tuesday. Photo: VCG

China's stock market could attract as much as 600 billion yuan ($88.6 billion) in 2019, as investors eye opportunities in sectors ranging from high-technology companies to the real economy, after China vowed to further open up the financial sector and global indexes included Chinese stocks.

The projected net inflow would be almost double last year's net inflow of 300 billion yuan of overseas capital into the A-share market, according to Fang Xinghai, vice chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission.

Fang told a recent forum that the increase is due in part to the inclusion of Chinese stocks to global indexes.

Kang Chongli, director of the strategy department under Lianxun Securities, forecast a net inflow of 500 billion yuan into A shares this year, according to a report he sent to the Global Times on Tuesday.

In 2019, overseas investors have even quickened moves to pour capital into A shares. Just so far this year, more than 100 billion yuan worth of overseas capital has flowed into the A-share markets, according to figures calculated by Yang Delong, chief economist at the Shenzhen-based First Seafront Fund Management Co, in a report he released on Tuesday.

Good timing

The increase may have been boosted by the inclusion of Chinese assets in benchmark indexes such as MSCI's absorption of A-share stocks and the Bloomberg Barclays bond index. The inflows are also being drawn by the low valuations in the Chinese stock market.

"The A-share market is becoming a 'haven' for overseas capital, at a time when risks are accumulating in the US and European stock markets. There's the possibility that those markets might slide at any time. A-share markets, on the contrary, have bottomed out and can only rebound now," Dong Dengxin, director of the Financial Securities Institute at Wuhan University of Science and Technology, told the Global Times on Tuesday.

As A shares gradually built momentum for a solid rebound in recent weeks, overseas investors felt that it was time to jump into the pool.

In an interview with the Global Times in December, Guy Strapp, chief executive at Eastspring Investments, the Asian investment management arm of London-based insurer Prudential, said that "given that we start from a cheap base, (around April) can be an attractive entry point... as well as excellent timing." Eastspring Investments is set to launch its first private fund product focusing on A-share issues around April this year in the mainland.

After the Spring Festival holidays, the Shanghai Composite Index rose from 2,653.90 points on February 11 to 2,755.65 points on Tuesday, while the Shenzhen Component Index rose from 7,919.05 points to 8,440.87 points during the same period.

"This kind of rise is already quite unusual for overseas investors, considering the slight fluctuation in the US and European markets," Dong said.

Opening-up push

Financial sector opening-up and the strength of the Chinese economy are also behind this broad trend, analysts said.

So far this year, China opened up its credit-rating sector to foreign capital. It also eased restrictions on the Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor and the RMB Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor programs, making it easier to move funds out of the Chinese mainland.

Luo Yuding, Shanghai-based financial and equity market expert and independent board director of brokerage firm Sinolink Securities, said financial opening-up measures concerning cross-border capital flows will have the most direct impact on foreign investment into A shares.

"Domestic investors should abandon their pessimistic outlook so as not to miss this round of opportunity," Luo told the Global Times on Monday.

Opening-up measures will also continue, with moves like the launch of the stock link program between Shanghai and London, which is widely expected to take place before the end of this year.

The government's reforms involving the science and innovation board will also provide plenty of chances for overseas investors. "Apart from major blue-chips, science companies are also sought after by overseas capital. I am sure that if a 'Chinese Microsoft' or a 'Chinese Apple' debuts on the science and innovation board, foreign investors won't miss it," Dong said.
Falling Value of Bitcoin Hits Related Companies in China
By Zhang Hongpei
Global Times
2019/2/19 22:23:40

Workers conduct tests on Bitcoin miners at a Bitmain production base in Shenzhen, South China's Guangdong Province. File photo: VCG

The glory days of Bitcoin-related business, including mining machines of the coin, may be over in the past year as the falling value of the cryptocurrency is hitting demand for related products.

Chinese crypto-mining giant Bitmain Technologies has laid off almost two-thirds of its employees, mainly those engaged in several business lines such as blockchain, artificial intelligence and semiconductors. The company's headcount now stands at about 1,000, compared with more than 3,000 prior to the layoff, domestic news site jiemian.com reported Tuesday, citing a former employee.

Bitmain accounted for more than 70 percent of the world's miner sales. Miners are facilities with thousands of machines that create Bitcoin by solving complex mathematical puzzles.

Bitmain saw its revenues and profits soar in 2017, triggered by a boom in demand for miners as the digital currency entered a bull market.

However, sales nosedived in 2018 as the coin's value shrank, directly leading to the mass layoffs, said the jiemian.com report.

At the end of 2018, Bitcoin had witnessed a nearly 80-percent drop in network value, falling from $280 billion to $56 billion and the broader market lost nearly $700 billion of total capitalization, media reports have said.

The Beijing-based start-up reportedly began cutting its workforce in December. Bitmain Technologies could not be reached for comment as of press time.

Guo Dazhi, research director with the Zhongguancun Internet Finance Institute, told the Global Times on Tuesday that businesses related to Bitcoin and blockchain have been affected to varying degrees in the past year due to the declining trend in the market.

Huobi Group, a Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange, also "optimized" its staff last year. "But we'll continue to hire new people," a PR representative of Huobi told the Global Times on Tuesday.

Huobi.com, a popular domestic Bitcoin trading platform, was shut down in September 2017 after Chinese authorities ordered a ban on initial coin offerings (ICOs).

The People's Bank of China (PBC), the country's central bank, and several other agencies released a document on September 4, 2017, in which they voiced concerns over risks in virtual-currency trading and suggested measures to curb such risks, including barring new issues of ICOs.

As of last April, Bitcoin trading platforms had virtually disappeared from the Chinese mainland, according to the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission.

Zhou Xiaochuan, the former governor of the PBC, said in a press conference in March last year on the sidelines of the annual session of the National People's Congress that the development of digital currencies should be carefully watched and more discretion should be exercised over virtual asset trading.

According to Zhou, regulation of the emerging sector should be dynamic.

"It is still the trial-and-error phase for the development of digital currencies. But blockchain, the underlying technology of the coin, should be encouraged and pushed forward as its day is coming," said Guo.

"Blockchain is currently transforming from a concept to a practical application. In the process, both opportunities and risks remain," he added.
A Message to the US: It’s Time to Prove How Huawei Serves As a Security Threat
By Chen Qingqing
Global Times
2019/2/17 21:33:39

Europe should not let politics hinder its chances in 5G era

Talk is cheap. It's time for the US to stop groundless accusations and provide concrete evidence to prove how China's Huawei Technologies is a security threat.

Huawei has become a hyped topic lately at global conferences and in politicians' speeches. During the annual Munich Security Conference (MSC) held in Germany from Friday to Sunday, not surprisingly, questions concerning the Chinese technology giant were raised repeatedly. No matter how many times Chinese officials and senior executives from Huawei have denied the accusations that the privately held firm poses security risks to telecom networks and spies for the Chinese government, some politicians, like US Vice President Mike Pence, simply reject this without any ground.

Pence repeated the same accusations at the MSC, saying that Chinese law requires Chinese telecom equipment suppliers to provide the country's security apparatus with access to any data that touches their networks or equipment. That's his argument about how Huawei could serve as a security threat.

At the same event, Yang Jiechi, a senior Chinese official, rebutted this rhetoric. He reiterated that Chinese laws do not require companies to install a backdoor or collect intelligence.

What Pence said is try to lobby European countries to follow suit by barring Huawei from their 5G network development, which is another step in the US-led geopolitical campaign against China's technological rise. US officials have become much more active recently in asking Europe to join the anti-Huawei game. US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo did the same thing earlier in Hungary.

But in all of their comments, there has been no single shred of concrete evidence provided.

If US authorities insist that the Chinese company is a threat, it is time to show evidence to other countries that there are loopholes in Huawei's equipment and products, rather than turning 5G into the subject of political or ideological discussions.

Every telecom network supplier has to make efforts to ensure network security. And it's very natural that authorities have concerns over the network security.

In the UK, Huawei has responded actively to local government's concerns on this matter. As mentioned by Huawei Rotating Chairman Eric Xu Zhijun in a recent interview, Huawei has worked together with the UK government in putting in place the HCSEC, known as the Cyber Security Evaluation Center, to embark on partnerships to address the concerns of the UK government that there might be backdoors in Huawei's products.

Also, Robert Hannigan, former director of the UK intelligence agency GCHQ, said in a recent op-ed article that there has been no evidence showing malicious Chinese state-sponsored cyber activity through Huawei's technology.

Xu said in the interview that when the company worked with the UK government, Huawei delivered its source code to the HCSEC, which was then checked by British nationals with the UK's highest level of clearance DV, who later found no backdoors in the products.

Later this month, major European carriers, governments and industry representatives will gather in Barcelona, Spain for the MWC19, the most important industry event. For sure, 5G will be a major topic during this gathering.

The GSMA recently called on policymakers not to lose focus on policy objectives, and secure networks should be achieved through a fact-based and risk-based approach.

It emphasized that mobile operators, as well as some government security agencies, have meticulously tested mobile network infrastructure for years and have not discovered any evidence of wrongdoing.

An attendee to the MSC said that Huawei has always been a hyped topic at the event, even though some people do not really understand what the company does. This reminded me of a recent French TV debate on whether French carriers should ban the company from the nation's 5G network. The host of this program, who could not pronounce the name of the Chinese company correctly, is unlikely to lead the debate in unbiased way.

Europe should better understand Huawei through facts and not let this well-coordinated geopolitical campaign hinder its catch-up in the next generation of mobile technology. 
US ‘Trying to Disrupt’ China-CEE Ties
By Yang Sheng
Global Times
2019/2/11 21:43:39

Pompeo’s visit aims to shift focus from economy to security: observers

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's trip to Central and Eastern Europe this week is meant to contain and sideline China and Russia's influence in the region, and to make security a mainstream issue for the region rather than economic development, said Chinese observers.

Pompeo visits Hungary on Monday before traveling on Tuesday to Slovakia and then Poland, where he will co-host a conference on security in the Middle East with the Polish government, US news portal Politico reported on Monday.

Cui Hongjian, director of EU Studies at the China Institute of International Studies, told the Global Times on Monday that Central and Eastern Europe is an "arena of struggle among great powers."

Even though China is different from other major powers, since its presence is focused on economic development rather than security, such as the 16+1 cooperation (16 regional countries plus China), the West still considers China engaged in the power struggle, he said.

Pompeo wants to make up for a lack of US engagement that opened the door to more Chinese and Russian influence in Central Europe, US officials told Reuters on Monday. "This is overdue and needed," a senior US administration official told Reuters, speaking on condition of anonymity. "Our message is we have to show up or expect to lose."

"Our efforts at diplomatic engagement are aimed at competing for positive influence and giving allies in the region an indication of US support and interest in order to have alternatives to China and Russia," the official said.

In the past few years, the 16+1 framework has already made economic cooperation the mainstream of Central and Eastern Europe, but recently, due to the Ukrainian crisis and the pullout of the US from the INF treaty (Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty), Washington is trying to transform the mainstream in the region from economic cooperation to security, according to Cui. 

Washington is also concerned about China's growing presence, in particular the expansion of Huawei Technologies, the world's biggest telecoms gear maker, in Hungary and Poland, Reuters reported.

On the issue of Huawei and 5G, which is also related to security, the US intends to use its advantage in security to push China's economic influence out from the region, Cui said.

Yang Xiyu, a senior research fellow at the China Institute of International Studies, told the Global Times on Monday that "the US is good at using technologies to threaten other countries' security, and Edward Snowden has proved it. That's why it is so nervous about Huawei and 5G."

However, 5G is a key infrastructure in the next round of technological revolution, so choosing to cooperate with the US and closing the door on China's 5G will serve Washington's interests but will harm those of Central and Eastern European countries, Yang noted.
Principles for US-China Negotiations
Global Times
2019/2/19 21:45:13

Chinese Vice Premier Liu He will visit the US on Thursday and Friday to continue high-level trade negotiations. His new title as Chinese President Xi Jinping's special envoy indicates the importance and authoritativeness of the talks. As preparation for the event, consultations at vice-ministerial-level between China and the US were recovered on Tuesday.

The world's stock markets surged Monday due to the optimistic prospects on the deals that Beijing and Washington are expected to make. US President Donald Trump praised "big progress" in the trade deal on Twitter. His words further stoked the stock markets of the US, which reached the highest in two months and so increased pressure on the Trump administration to close the deal with China.

Analysts believe that if the two countries couldn't come to an agreement, and as a result the US imposes more tariffs on Chinese products while China responds with fiercer countermeasures, it would be a catastrophic strike to global stock markets.

In terms of avoiding such blows, the Trump administration is probably the most pressured. Thus in general, by the end of the trade negotiations, China and the US have become more psychologically equal.

Both sides have showed their strength and volition in the unprecedented trade war: The US didn't easily stop and China was not that fragile to be defeated. However, it has proven no empty talk that in a long-term trade war, both sides would eventually lose.

President Xi and President Trump reached consensus on December 1 and put the two countries back onto the win-win track. The consensus has responded to the situation, conformed with people's wishes and reversed the pessimism of the market.

Starting December 2018, rounds of consultations resolved a large number of divergences. The outcome has been sufficient to outline a new face of China-US economic and trade cooperation and to bring an incalculable impetus to both sides' economic development.

In the final phase of the talks, both sides must keep calm, treasure the already-made achievements and promote smoother and fairer China-US trade cooperation.

US demand for China's structural reform must stay in line with China-US trade cooperation and coordinate with China's reform and opening-up. The talks must not try to force Beijing to change its economic governance or even its development path.

The final deal should attend to the interests of nongovernmental organizations that ultimately carry out economic and trade cooperation.

China and the US must sign an agreement that will inspire their people,  heralding accelerated economic development. Only such deals can withstand the test of history.
Venezuela Will Never Be Alone
The history of U.S. wars shows with great eloquence that the use of force is the modus operandi of this country’s rulers. There is nothing new in the script now being used, except for the names of figures involved. Once again the pretext of humanitarian aid is fabricated to justify an intervention

Eduardo Palomares Calderó | informacion@granmai.cu
Ángel Freddy Pérez Cabrera | freddy@granma.cu
February 19, 2019 10:02:20

The history of U.S. wars shows with great eloquence that the use of force is the modus operandi of this country’s rulers. There is nothing new in the script now being used, except for the names of figures involved. Once again the pretext of humanitarian aid is fabricated to justify an intervention.

“Respect the peace,” “No coup, no intervention,” “Defend the people’s right to choose their own path,” are just some of the phrases repeated these last few days in Cuba, in workplaces and schools, in agricultural cooperatives and community centers across the country, because Venezuela has committed a sin: standing on its own two feet with its head held high, resisting imperialist pretensions. Venezuelans have committed the sin of being free.

“It is inadmissible that the Yankee government is using the opposition to destroy the great conquests achieved by the Bolivarian Revolution,” Miriam Isaac Reginfo, a technician at Santiago de Cuba’s Architectural Construction Enterprise No. 57, told Granma.

She worked for three years in the sister country as an inspector for the housing mission, in the state of Miranda, and recalls the thousands of buildings she saw erected in the five municipalities she covered, all for needy families, including many who lost their homes in landslides.

“All of this is at risk now,” she said, along with programs devoted to education, sports, culture, science, food production, the environment and economic development - so hated by the U.S. government because they are no longer permitted to plunder the country’s riches as they once did.

"Therefore, as stated in the Revolutionary Government statement, which we have just supported with our signatures, we will do whatever is necessary. Today dignity and action are required, because just as Fidel said that after Girón, all the peoples of Latin America were a little more free, if the example of Venezuela is lost, that freedom will be endangered.

"We will never leave Venezuela alone," she emphasized, "and I think that the world will not abandon it to fate either, because the bloodbaths and the retreat of history, to which U.S. military interventions have always led, supported by a few puppet governments, cannot be the destiny of the children of Simón Bolívar.”

María Cristina Díaz Montalván, a shopkeeper in the Villa Clara neighborhood of Sabino Hernández, insisted that these are times in which unity is needed to preserve the sovereignty and independence of the sister nation.

Likewise, Elías René Pérez Molina and Florencio Altunaga López, delegates to the XXI Congress of the Cuban Workers Federation (CTC), condemned U.S. aggression, which is directed toward seizing Venezuela’s natural resources and putting an end to Latin American unity, they said.

“If they think we are going to sit idly, they are wrong,” said Digna Morales Molina, director of the Commerce and Gastronomy Enterprise in Villa Clara, and recalled José Martí's phrase: "Give me a way to serve Venezuela: she has in me a son," an idea repeated today by millions of Cubans and honest citizens of the world, who know very well what it would mean for this nation to lose its independence.

IN CONTEXT

President Donald Trump delivered an offensive speech in Miami, reiterating the threat of military aggression against Venezuela.

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez said it is time to take a stand, beyond political differences, in defense of peace, and emphasized that the humanitarian aid issue is being used as a pretext to launch a war for oil.

Trump has violated Venezuela’s sovereignty, by recognizing a puppet president invented in Washington, the minister tweeted.

Rodriguez noted that Trump has added McCarthyism to the Monroe Doctrine and has reiterated that all options are open. “The danger of military aggression is real. The history of Our America has demonstrated this.”
Maduro Rejects 'Nazi-Like' Trump Speech, Fake Humanitarian Aid
The Bolivarian Republic will survive and will continue to “pursue its diverse ideas” while respecting the diversity and beliefs of others, the Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said. | Photo: EFE

18 February 2019
Telesur

Donald Trump wants to impose white supremacy on Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro said.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s only thoughts are to stay in the White House and his humanitarian aid is just a show, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said of Trump’s “Nazi-like” speech in Miami, Monday.

"What is it that Trump loves from Venezuela? Oil, coltan, diamonds ... the worst thing is that there are people from Venezuela who serve as puppets. The humanitarian aid is a show, they rob us US$30 billion dollars and they offer us US$20 million in rotten food," Maduro said during a televised response just an hour after Trump concluded his speech in Florida.

"Today Donald Trump was in Miami with a tired rhetoric, questioning the right of our free country to adopt the ideas of human, Christian socialism, with an almost Nazi-styled speech to stunt different ideologies," said Maduro.

Throughout his speech in Miami, President Trump hashly criticized socialism, defining it as an ideology "based on ignorance."

Trump told the crowd of expat Venezuelans and Venezuelan-Americans gathered at Florida International University, “Socialism insists on absolute conformity, it’s not about justice, or equality, or lifting up the poor. It’s about power for the ruling class. And the more power they get, the more they crave. They want to run everything."

Maduro responded, “Donald Trump wants to ban ideologies, political diversity and wants to impose the unique perspective of the white supremacists from the White House."

The United States believes they own Venezuela and have the power to dictate the nation’s future, Maduro said, adding that he believes the U.S. wants to enslave citizens.

However, the Bolivarian Republic will survive and will continue to “pursue its diverse ideas” while respecting the diversity and beliefs of others, the Venezuelan president said.

Over the last year, the northern power has repeatedly attempted to overthrow democratically elected Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro through various means. First with sanctions, then with threats of a militarized intervention, and more recently coercing its allies to back the self-proclaimed interim president, the opposition lawmaker, Juan Guaido, all with the purpose of confiscating Venezuela’s vast oil reserves, according to U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton.

Trump’s proposal of a militarized intervention into the Bolivarian nation has been rejected by Congress, however, the president has continued his attempts to violate international law and send unsolicited “humanitarian aid” to the “poor Venezuelan boys and girls.”

During the interview, Maduro also noted that although the “humanitarian aid” from the United States has remained in Colombia, the country has continued to receive assistance from the United Nations and also recently received 300 tons of aid from Russia.

Earlier this week, another shipment of medical supplies, weighing an incredible 933 tons arrived to Puerto de la Guaira, Venezuela from Cuba, China, Russia, Palestine, Turkey, among others.

Over 22,570 units of spare parts for medical equipment, 192,000 kit for diagnostic tests and "more than 100,000 kit for cytology" were included in the shipment, which Health Minister Carlos Alvarado said is received regularly in the port city.
Mexican Envoy to UN Asserts Need for Dialogue in Venezuela
Juan Ramon de la Fuente (L) speaks at a public hearing in the Chamber of Deputies, in Mexico City, Mexico, Jan. 25, 2016. | Photo: EFE

19 February 2019
Telesur

Mexico is committed to peace and dialogue as the only solution to the Venezuelan situation.

The new ambassador of Mexico to the United Nations, Juan Ramon de la Fuente, presented his credentials Monday to the U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, and confirmed that his country is committed to dialogue to solve the situation in Venezuela, regardless of the attitude of the U.S. President Donald Trump.

"Regardless of what Donald Trump says today, Mexico's position will not vary with respect to Venezuela, which is to leave the door open to dialogue, which cannot be ruled out in any situation," De la Fuente said and recalled that "we want to find a peaceful solution (...) because impositions, sanctions, are not the best way (...) The solution will only come with peace and dialogue."

Juan Ramon de la Fuente, former Secretary of Health and former Rector of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), has been involved with the U.N. since 1985 as a consultant to the World Health Organization (WHO) on issues of mental health, addictions and violence.

In 1995 he was vice-president of the World Health Assembly in Geneva and in 1998 he chaired the United Nations Council against AIDS (UNAIDS) in Paris.

He was also a member of the Council of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco) on several occasions and in 2009, at the invitation of the then U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, he joined the Council of the United Nations University, based in Tokyo.

Asked about Mexico's attitude towards President Trump's willingness to raise an anti-immigration wall on the border between the two countries, the new Mexican ambassador said that this is a matter of "internal U.S. policy," so "it deserves our respect beyond agreeing or not."

In any case, the ambassador made it clear that this is not in line with the vision and policies advocated by Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO), who supports dealing with immigration and border problems in collaboration with the U.N. and in line with the Marrakesh agreement in a more orderly regulation of migratory flows.
Trump's Miami Speech High on Hyperbole Against Venezuela, Cuba
“We seek a peace- all options are open," U.S. President Donald Trump said, without publicly eliminating the fear of a militarized intervention. | Photo: Reuters

18 February 2019
Telesur

Changes were coming to socialist Latin American countries, Trump said, without expanding further or offering any concrete measures.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s talk in Miami, Florida Monday was high on hyperbole and low on concrete plans, despite previews illustrating a more direct criticism of Venezuela’s political situation and the Bolivarian military’s position.

During the thirty-minute speech, the president reaffirmed his country’s support for the self-declared interim president, Juan Guaido, and attacked socialism and its role in Latin America and alleged attempts to bring it to the United States.

Trump told the large Venezuelan congregation gathered at Miami’s Florida International University, “A new day is coming to Latin America."

"The end of socialism has arrived in our hemisphere and in all parts of the world, not only in Venezuela but also in Nicaragua and Cuba," said Trump, who stressed his attack on socialism by defining it as an ideology "based on ignorance."

Over the last year, the northern power has repeatedly attempted to overthrow democratically-elected Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro through various means. First with sanctions, then with threats of a militarized intervention, and more recently coercing its allies to back the self-proclaimed interim president, the opposition lawmaker, Juan Guaido, all with the purpose of confiscating Venezuela’s vast oil reserves, according to U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton.

Trump’s proposal of a militarized intervention into the Bolivarian nation has been rejected by Congress, however, the president has continued his attempts to violate international law and send unsolicited “humanitarian aid” to the “poor Venezuelan boys and girls.”

Earlier Tuesday, the president urged Venezuela’s military to abandon Maduro and side with Guaido.

Trump went on to say to the far right crowd that the current path toward democracy is irreversible in Venezuela and that “Venezuelan military officials have a clear choice - work toward democracy for their future and the future of their families, or they will lose everything they have.”

“The United States knows where military officials and their families have money hidden throughout the world… so they "should listen to President (Juan) Guaidó and allow humanitarian aid to enter Venezuela," the White House said.

Minutes after Trump’s speech, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez tweeted, “Miami president's offensive speech #EEUU confirms the threat of military aggression against #Venezuela. It is time to pronounce ourselves, above political differences, in defense of #Peace. Humanitarian aid is a pretext for a war of oil plunder.

“Trump offends the sovereignty of #Venezuela, the cradle of the Liberator and independence. The solidarity of the #Cuba Bolivarian and Chavez Revolution,  President Maduro and the civic-military union. Paradoxically, Trump tries to impose a puppet "president" invented in Washington,” the diplomat wrote.