Saturday, June 30, 2012

Derek Mitchell appointed US envoy to Myanmar

Derek Mitchell appointed US envoy to Myanmar


Veteran diplomat Derek Mitchell will be appointment as America's first Ambassador to Myanmar in 22 years.His appointment has been confirmed by the Senate, the latest in a series of efforts by the US to bring the country out of isolation after five decades of military rule.

Forty seven -year-old Mitchell, who was till now the Special US Representative and Policy Coordinator for Myanmar, is expected to leave for that country soon.

Mursi sworn in as first elected president of Egypt

Egypt, has its fateful day, its elected  president by the people, Mohammed Mursi has been sworn in as the first freely elected President of the country. The swearing in ceremony took place before the Supreme Constitutional Court in Cairo on Saturday. He will be addressing the nation for the first time as the President of Egypt before Cairo University shortly.

The oath taking ceremony took place before 19 member Supreme Constitutional Court in Cairo a short while ago.  Mohammed Mursi is a US educated Engineer from Nile delta who rose from a humble background to the highest ranks of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood. The first civilian President of Egypt will have to contend with the military which has assumed sweeping powers.

Mohamed Mursi to be sworn in Saturday before the Constitutional Court, the presidency announced after differences with the army over the transfer of power. Mursi “will go at 11 am (0900 GMT) Saturday to the Constitutional Court to take the oath before the Court’s general assembly,” said a statement released by the official MENA news agency. Mursi thereafter  go on to Cairo University to celebrate his investiture and address the nation, the statement added. Egypt’s president traditionally takes the oath in parliament, but the country’s top court has ordered the disbanding of the Islamist-dominated legislature.

  By agreeing to be sworn in by the Constitutional Court, Mursi is effectively acknowledging the court’s decision to dissolve parliament.The Muslim Brotherhood, which fielded Mursi as its candidate in the election and from which he resigned after his victory, had insisted that the oath be taken before the legislature.

A debate around the issue of swearing in and attempts are being made to reach a compromise that will satisfy all national forces,” MENA quoted Mursi’s spokesman Yasser Ali as saying earlier. Egypt’s first civilian president, and the first elected since an uprising ousted president Hosni Mubarak last year, still has to contend with the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces.The SCAF, which took control after Mubarak resigned, will retain broad powers even after it formally transfers control to Mursi.

 ”Media reports said Mursi was consulting a cross-section of Egyptian society before appointing a premier and a cabinet mostly made up of technocrats and work on new a constitution

Mursi, the Muslim Brotherhood's candidate, read the oath before the Supreme Constitutional Court, and then speak at Cairo University, before going to an army base for the handover from military rule.Transfer of power  at the Heikstep base by Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, former defence minister for two decades, to hand over to Mursi,thus  making way for an elected president by July 1.

Mursi, the first President since the king was toppled by army officers in 1952 who was not drawn from top military ranks. Muslim Brotherhood, an outfit which propelled Mursi to office, it marks a dramatic reversal of fortunes after decades of repression. He was to be sworn in at 11 a.m. (CET) by the constitutional court, rather than by parliament as is usual.

Mursi took an informal oath of office on Friday in a speech to supporters in Cairo's Tahrir Square, in a slap at the generals trying to limit his power.Paying tribute to Egypt's Muslims and Christians alike, Mursi symbolically swore himself in as the country's first elected civilian president.Mursi, who won a run-off election earlier this month, was received with applause by the tens of thousands of people gathered in the birthplace of the revolt that overthrew dictator Hosni Mubarak last year.He promised a "civilian state" and praised "the square of the revolution, the square of freedom," in what he called an address to "the free world, Arabs, Muslims... the Muslims of Egypt, Christians of Egypt."
"There is no power above people power," the former Muslim Brotherhood figure declared to wild cheers from the crowd."I was one of you and I still am, and I will continue to always be one of you. I came to you because I believe that you are the source of power and legitimacy above all sides," he added.
 Thus Muris had sworn in at Tahrir Square in front of his supporters where he pledged to form a civilian, nationalist and constitutional Government where power flows from the people of Egypt -Muslims and Christians alike.
Media agencies

San Suu Kyi is back to Myanmar

San Suu Kyi is back to Myanmar on Saturday after her five-nation European tour.
She arrived in Yangon after an exhausting two-week visit to Europe was given a reception normally reserved for heads of state and toasted for her peaceful resistance to dictatorship.Suu Kyi, 67, to prepare for the re-opening of Myanmar's fledgling parliament in Naypyidaw on Wednesday when she will take her place -- alongside her National League for Democracy (NLD) colleagues as an elected MP for the first time.

On her first visit to Europe in more than two decades the Nobel Peace laureate visited Switzerland, Norway, Ireland, Britain and France.She delivered a long delayed Nobel lecture, was honoured at her alma mater Oxford University, met pop stars and politicians and charmed the European public with speeches on her decades of struggle and her hopes for Myanmar.On Thursday in Paris she said she was ready to lead the country if required and pledged to work towards embedding reforms ahead of scheduled 2015 national elections.She also expressed delight at her reception and the support the Myanmar democracy campaign has garnered in Europe over the years."So many people from different parts of the world seem to be aware of what we have been struggling for in Burma," she said. "I felt such a tremendous sense of solidarity with us. That has been a surprise."

Parliamentary session is to discuss recent deadly communal violence which flared in western Myanmar, among other issues, and marks the NLD's entry into mainstream political institutions in the country.
The party was repressed for years by the army junta that ruled Myanmar for decades, but a reformist government under ex-general President Thein Sein has made a number of changes since it took office last year.Media agencies

World heritage status to Church of the Nativity


UN cultural body UNESCO ignored Israeli objections on Friday to grant world heritage status to the birthplace of Jesus Christ in the Palestinian city of Bethlehem.UNESCO's 13-6 secret vote to add the Church of the Nativity and its pilgrimage route to the prestigious list was received with a round of rousing applause and a celebratory fist pump by the beaming head of the Palestinian delegation. "These sites are threatened with total destruction through the Israeli occupation, through the building of the separation wall, because of all the Israeli sanctions and the measures that have been taken to stifle the Palestinian identity," the Palestinian delegate said after the vote.
"This global recognition of the rights of the Palestinian people is a victory for our cause and for justice," Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas's spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina said.

Mercosur Suspends Paraguay

Mercosur Suspends Paraguay

Mercosur Suspends Paraguay, Accepts Venezuela as New Member
South American trading bloc Mercosur has suspended Paraguay’s membership in the organization while approving Venezuela as a new member, Mexican media reported.
Presidents of Mercosur member-countries gathered on Friday in Mendoza, Argentina, for an emergency summit following the recent impeachment of Paraguay’s President Fernando Lugo by the country’s parliament.
Mercosur leaders voted to suspend Paraguay’s membership until presidential elections in the country in April 2013, but decided against imposing economic sanctions on one of Latin America’s poorest nations as Paraguay’s economy heavily depends on trade with other Mercosur members.
Mercosur, which comprises Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay as full members, and Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru as associate members, earlier condemned Lugo’s ouster and barred Paraguay’s interim president Federico Franco, whose party supported the impeachment, from attending the summit.
At the summit, the leaders of the bloc approved Venezuela as a new full member starting July 31.
Caracas had been trying to get the full membership for six years, but the move had been blocked by Paraguayan lawmakers despite Lugo’s support of Venezuela’s aspirations.
Venezuela’s President Hugo Chávez said in an interview with Telesur television network on Friday that the country’s full membership in Mercosur would have a powerful “political, geopolitical, and social” impact as it meant “a defeat for imperialism and Paraguayan bourgeoisie.”

Annan calls to end the bloodshed in Syria

Annan calls to end the bloodshed in Syria

Hillary Clinton and Sergei Lavrov
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov believes that the international community has a good chance in Geneva of finding a path forward to stimulate the implementation of Kofi Annan’s Plan on the Syrian conflict.
“We have a very good chance tomorrow in Geneva to find a common denominator and find a path forward in order to stimulate the implementation of of Annan’s Plan from both sides of the Syrian [conflict],” Lavrov said during a briefing after a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in St. Petersburg.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said the Syrian government is ready to withdraw its armed forces from the country’s cities in parallel with the forces of the Syrian opposition.
Russia has said the Geneva conference should include all the permanent members of the UN Security Council, Syria’s neighbors (Iraq, Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon), as well as key players in the region (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Iran) and international organizations (League of Arab States, European Union).
According to UN estimates, some 10,000 people have been killed in Syria since the beginning of a popular uprising against President Bashar al-Assad in March 2011. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Lodon-based organization with a network of activists in Syria, has put the death toll at 12,000.
UN-Arab League joint envoy Kofi Annan on Friday appealed to participants in a Saturday meeting on Syria to “act in unison” to end the bloodshed in the Middle East country, pointing to deep involvement by external powers which is contributing to a worsening situation there.
“Many external powers are deeply involved,” the former UN chief wrote in an article for The Washington Post, noting “Despite formal unity behind the six-point plan, mutual mistrust has made them work at cross-purposes.”
The six-point peace plan devised by Annan has won widespread support but has failed to halt the raging violence and bloodshed in Syria. The envoy blamed the plan’s non-implementation for its failure, and lamented the situation in the Arab nation as one that “could hardly be more grave.”
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said on Tuesday that his country is “in a state of a real war,” calling for all polices and directives directed to win the war.
Without naming any countries, Annan said the external powers, ” intentionally or otherwise,” “have encouraged the government and parts of the opposition to believe that force is the only option.”
“This serves no one’s interest — least of all that of the Syrian people,” he asserted.
Annan announced on Wednesday that an Action Group for Syria, involving world powers and regional players, will meet on Saturday in Geneva to identify “steps and measures” to secure full implementation of the peace plan and UN Security Council resolutions 2042 and 2043, including “an immediate cessation of violence in all its forms.”

Mongolian Democratic Party to form coalition govt

Mongolian Democratic Party to form coalition govt

2012-06-30 08:22:33 – ULAANBAATAR, MONGOLIA .Sagar Media Inc;
The main opposition Mongolian Democratic Party, or MDP, is expected to become the largest force in the country’s parliament. It took the most votes but failed to gain a majority in Thursday’s general election.The pro-free market party is expected to soon begin talks with other parties to form a coalition government.
The election commission said that with 97 percent of the votes counted on Friday afternoon, the MDP had won about 32 percent, followed by the ruling Mongolian People’s Party, or MPP, with 28 percent.
The breakaway party from the MPP, the Mongolian People’s Revolutionary Party, or MPRP, led by former president Nambaryn Enkhbayar, garnered about 20 percent of total vote. MDP has secured 20 seats . The MPP has 15, and the MPRP 4.
The final results will not be known for a while as 28 seats for the proportional representation constituencies have yet to be allocated.
Davaa Batbayar, a candidate from the MDP who was called Kyokushuzan when he was a sumo wrestler in Japan, lost his bid.Retired Yokozuna grand champion Asashoryu’s
elder brother Dolgorsuren Sumiyabazar, from the MPP, lost despite support from his younger brother.
From the Office of the President of Mongolia: The following is a statement released by Mongolian President Tsakhia Elbegdorj to international journalists and organizations observing Mongolia’s seventh parliamentary election upon the conclusion of voting:
“I am proud that the people of Mongolia have cast their ballots today in the seventh free and fair national parliamentary elections since our revolution. On the heels of these elections, we have moved further down the path of democracy and progress for this great nation.
As the democratic anchor of the East, Mongolia has an obligation to our people and to our global allies to continue on the course of expanding freedom and opportunity for all. The votes of our citizens in this week’s elections serve as a reminder that our people hold their leaders accountable for their actions, and that continuing to eliminate corruption, promoting transparency and building economic success for all Mongolians remain national priorities.
To best serve the interests of our people and to advance our global role as a stable democracy, members of all political parties must work together to ensure that Mongolia will meet the challenges of the 21st century. This objective is critical, as only cooperative governance will ensure a proper standard of living for our people, and opportunities for generations to come.
I urge the members of the new parliament to work together to ensure the sustainability of our nation’s precious resources as we pursue meaningful economic opportunities that these assets offer all Mongolians.
Today is a great day in Mongolia’s history. We should be justifiably proud of completing another free and fair election. However, we cannot forget the tremendous, important work that lies before us. I am committed to working closely with the new parliament, civil society groups, business and community leaders to move Mongolia forward. I truly believe that in doing so our people will reap the rewards for themselves and their children that their hopes, votes, and their voices have brought them.”

Yesterday I shared an emotional moment with Barack:”Joe Biden”

Yesterday I shared an emotional moment with Barack:”Joe Biden”

“Joe Biden”
“Naresh Sagar”
Naresh – Yesterday I shared an emotional moment with Barack in the Oval Office after he learned health reform had been upheld.
Barack Obama is a man who refused to give up. No matter how politically unpopular it was, he knew it was the right thing to do.
Tomorrow is the biggest fundraising deadline of this election so far. Romney and the Republicans may outraise us again — you can bet they’ll have a whole slew of special interests who want to see Romney make good on his promise to repeal Obamacare on Day One.
But they can’t beat us if we pull together. Our grassroots movement is unstoppable when we put our minds to it.
Please donate $3 or more today, before the critical deadline:

EU leaders &German parliament approves EU bailout fund

Germany’s Parliament finally approves a permanent euro zone bailout scheme. A new budget rules drawn up by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Both the bills were ratified by Germany’s lower house Bundestag and upper house Bundesrat with the required two third majority.With the ratification of the European Stability Mechanism and “fiscal pact” also called fiscal compact for budget discipline, Germany clarified its intentions to stand by the euro.The 500 billion euro fund ESM will be used to bailout the faltering economies of Italy and Spain.

European leaders have agreed to allow the use of rescue funds to recapitalize ailing banks directly.
European Council President Herman Van Rompuy told reporters about the agreement on Friday following overnight meetings at the EU summit in Brussels.The agreement states that by the end of this year bailout funds will be provided directly to banks rather than through their national governments.The decision comes as the governments of Italy and Spain are urging action to bring down their borrowing costs for financing public debt.Van Rompuy said the EU countries hope to finalize the plans when the region’s finance ministers meet on July 9th.The EU summit agreed to spend 120 billion euro, or about 149 billion dollars, to stimulate economic growth.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Bashar al-Assad rejects foreign mediation

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has rejected international intervention in his country, saying Syria's problems will be resolved by Syrians.Assad made the remark during a one-hour interview broadcast on Iran's state-run television on Thursday. The interview was reportedly recorded one week ago.

Syrian president condemned the United States and European countries for supporting anti-government forces behind the scenes. He added that Arab countries were also involved and that Syrians will not accept any solution proposed by other countries.

Assad said opposition extremists in Syria are colluding with international terrorists to attack civilians.

He said his government will continue using force to crack down on opposition forces. He said eliminating just one terrorist can save many lives.

Fighting between government troops and opposition forces has been escalating across Syria.

The opposition says 104 people, including 20 children, were killed in government attacks on Wednesday alone.

The United States, Russia and other key players in the crisis will meet in Geneva on Saturday.

Hu Jintao in Hong Kong on 15th anniversary

Chinese top  leader is to attend anniversary events and the swearing-in of Hong Kong's new chief executive Leung Chun-ying.China's President Hu Jintao is visiting Hong Kong to mark the 15th anniversary of the territory's return to Chinese control. Protests are planned for the 3-day visit.

Nearly  300 children welcomed Hu as his plane landed at Hong Kong International Airport on Friday.
He told reporters that Hong Kong has made various achievements in the 15 years since the former British colony reverted to China.Stressing that the territory has prospered under China's "one-country two-system" policy, Hu said he hopes to see Hong Kong's latest progress during his visit.

 Security is beefed--up as activist are gearing up of  pro-democracy groups are planning mass demonstrations.Their demands include early direct elections for the post of chief executive, and improvement of human rights conditions in mainland China.

1 de Julio: Final de la Eurocopa 2012 España - Italia


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Instituto Cervantes Nueva Delhi Instituto Cervantes

Fútbol / Football

1 de Julio: Final de la Eurocopa 2012 España - Italia
1st of Juy: Final Eurocup 2012 Spain - Italy
¡Os esperamos para ver la final con nosotros en el Cervantes! Proyectaremos el partido en la cafetería y en el auditorio. Abrimos las puertas a las 23.30h y vemos el partido a las 00.15h de la noche del domingo al lunes.

Join us to watch the final match at Cervantes! We will screen the match at the cafeteria and at the auditorium. Doors opening will be at 11.30pm on Sunday night and the match starts at 00.15am on Monday. 

Instituto Cervantes Nueva Delhi
48, Hanuman Road
Connaught Place
110 001 Nueva Delhi
Tel. : 91 11 4368 19 00
Fax: 91 11 4356 86 92


On the occasion of The 2012 UEFA European Football Championship

UEFA EURO CHAMPIONSHIP 2012 Final Match Spain vs Italy will be screened live in the Multimedia Hall of the Istituto Italiano di Cultura (Italian Embassy Cultural Centre), New Delhi on 2nd July 2012 at 12.15 a.m.


Italian Embassy Cultural Centre
50-E, Chandragupta Marg,
Chanakyapuri, New Delhi - 110 021

Swiss Federer graceful performance at Wimbledon

Britain's Prince Charles made a rare, if fleeting, visit to Wimbledon on Wednesday but lingered long enough to see Roger Federer produce another regal performance on Centre Court and move serenely into the third round.

Swiss Federer, bidding for a record-equalling seventh men's singles title at the All England Club, aired his full repertoire of shots to outclass Fabio Fognini 6-1 6-3 6-2 in front of an appreciative Royal Box and 15,000 entranced fans.
With raindrops hovering around south west London, Centre Court's roof slid shut to enable defending champion Novak Djokovic to reach the third round with a straight-sets win over American Ryan Harrison.
Djokovic completed a 6-4 6-4 6-4 victory just before 10pm local time to set up a clash with 28th seed Radek Stepanek or German Benjamin Becker, one of several matches unfinished on a day of frustrating delays.
Women's top seed Maria Sharapova was poised to follow suit but bad light halted her progress against Tsvetana Pironkova when she led 7-6 3-1 having fended off set points on Court One.
Pironkova, Wimbledon semi-finalist in 2010, made an inspired start and Sharapova recovered from 2-0 and 5-2 down to take the first set 7-3 on the tiebreak.
The 2004 champion broke the Bulgarian early in the second set but was unhappy with the conditions and packed her designer handbag and headed for the locker room after convincing the umpire it was necessary to halt play.
Samantha Stosur became the highest seed to fall at the championships when the Australian was bundled out in the second round by Dutch player Arantxa Rus.
The fifth seed, the only player from the former tennis powerhouse to reach the second round, lost 6-2 0-6 6-4 in a wildly fluctuating match.
"It's a pretty woeful performance by all of us, but it's not through lack of trying or not wanting to be here or anything like that," Stosur said of Australia's failure to have a player in the third round of the singles for the first time since 1939.
She was not the only big name to fall in the women's singles.
Seventh seed Caroline Wozniacki, who began the year as world No. 1, did not even make it past the first round after losing 5-7 7-6 6-4 to Austria's Tamira Paszek despite having two match points in a contest spanning two days.
"(It) really sucks when you lose," was the verdict of the Dane who has made a habit of it this year while sliding down to seventh in the rankings.
Home fans who joined the early-morning queues snaking across the golf course opposite the grounds, were treated to early British cheer when Heather Watson reached the third round of the women's singles by beating American Jamie Lee Hampton.
Andy Murray will continue the quest for a long-awaited British grand slam winner in second-round action on Thursday against giant Croatian Ivo Karlovic.
Federer bowed to the heir to the throne before his match and Charles and his wife Camilla gave the 30-year-old maestro a standing ovation after he thrashed Fognini.
"We are thrilled for the tennis family that they came to watch today," Federer said after a stress-free victory that resembled a royal procession at times.
The languid Fognini played his part in proceedings in the second and third sets but his body language was that of a man just making up the numbers as Federer treated the crowd to some jewel-encrusted tennis in a match that flashed by in 74 minutes.
"I didn't think it was that easy a match," a modest Federer said. "I really tried to focus hard and made sure I played sort of a clean match, which I was able to do again today."
Federer, who last won the title in 2009, will face Frenchman Julien Benneteau in the third round.
Several first-round matches had to be completed on Wednesday after rain and bad light ended play early the previous evening.
Spain's seventh seed David Ferrer finished off Germany's Dustin Brown 7-5 6-4 6-4 but 25th seed Stanislas Wawrinka, who partnered Federer to Olympic doubles gold in Beijing four years ago, lost a five-set cliffhanger to Juergen Melzer.
Three-times runner-up Andy Roddick beat Briton Jamie Baker 7-6 6-4 7-5 and will return on Thursday to play Germany's Bjorn Phau in the second round.
"They tell you to go play, you go play. You can't really stress about what's out of your control. I've done it a million times," Roddick said of the stop-start nature of tennis on Wimbledon's lawns.

Govt reconstitutes NAC

Govt reconstitutes NAC

The government has reconstituted the National Advisory Council (NAC) chaired by Sonia Gandhi by dropping three members and inducting two new faces.

Mihir Shah, Member, Planning Commission, and Ashis Mondal, founder of the Bhopal-based NGO, Action for Social Advancement, have been inducted in the advisory panel for a period of one year.
Noted agriculture scientist M S Swaminathan, bureaucrat- turned-activist Harsh Mander and academician Madhav Gadgil have been denied renomination.
The tenure of the NAC had expired on 31st May. The government reconstituted the advisory panel on Thursday making it a 12-member body, including Chairperson Sonia Gandhi.
Other members of the panel who have been renominated are N C Saxena, Narendra Jadhav, Pramod Tandon, Aruna Roy, A K Shiva Kumar, Deep Joshi, Anu Aga, Farah Naqvi and Mirai Chatterjee.
The tenure of the members of the reconstituted panel is till 31st May 2013.
Jean Dreze, who was appointed member of the NAC in 2009, had quit after the panel had sent its recommendations to the government on the Food Security Bill.
Ram Dayal Munda, a prominent tribal leader and NAC member since 2009, passed away in September last year.
A meeting of the NAC which was scheduled on 29th June has been postponed to 6th July.
Currently, the NAC is deliberating on issues like watershed development, climate-smart agriculture and improving sex ratio at birth.

EU to spend €120 billion for growth

EU officials have agreed to spend €120 billion “for immediate growth measures” to aid the most vulnerable countries of the eurozone. The announcement comes during the latest EU summit that has started in Brussels.

­European Council President Herman Van Rompuy made the announcement at a summit press conference on Thursday. However, the latest reports from the summit suggest that the leaders of Spain and Italy are blocking a final agreement on a stimulus package until they win promises of immediate help in reducing their borrowing costs, AP reports.
An unnamed Italian official says his country’s government is linking the finalizing of the pact to immediate measures to relieve Italy's borrowing costs. A Spanish official says Madrid agrees with the growth plan too, but wants short-term measures at the same time. Both spoke on condition of anonymity while the closed-door talks are underway.
The package includes a €10 billion capital increase for the European Investment Bank as the centerpiece of the long-term growth plan. It also includes infrastructure financing, tax-policy pledges and support of small and medium-sized businesses.
It was originally presented by French President Francois Hollande, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti and Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy in Paris last week. Hollande pressed for the EU growth pact during his election campaign as a balancing measure to the fiscal pact on budgetary discipline backed by Merkel.
Earlier, Van Rompuy and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso also proposed creating a eurozone treasury to issue joint bonds to share the burden of debt-troubled countries. The proposal has been repeatedly ruled out by Angela Merkel, who is calling for the creation of a fiscal union before any further debt sharing.
But while the eurozone continues to shelter incompatible economies, giving power away to “super bureaucrats” is unlikely to solve any problems, points out MEP Nigel Farage.
“Basically, [Van Rompuy] wants the European Union to become a debt union, which may be acceptable to some of the southern countries who are effectively bust. To the northern countries, it is not,” Farage told RT. “The focus is always on Germany: will Chancellor Merkel blink or not?”
Klaus-Peter Willsch, an MP from the German Bundestag said his country should not bear financial responsibility for the rest of the eurozone.
“I cannot explain to my voters why German savings and German tax should go to financing deficits of other countries,” he told RT.
Willsch, who is firmly against any further bailouts, explained that it had been discussed and agreed at the very origins of introducing the euro currency that each country in the eurozone would deal with its own financial problems.
“We erected a legal framework which said strictly each country has to take care of its own budget, each country has to take care or has to limit deficits in their government budget, and there will be no bailout,” he said.
EU leaders will also focus on creating a banking union as a fundamental step towards fiscal integration. They propose the setting up of a single European banking supervisor, as well as working out a common deposit guarantee scheme and a single bank resolution fund to stabilize EU banking.
Both Italy and Spain have been pressing other European countries to intervene in the bond markets to bring down their borrowing costs before they are expelled from the market. However, it still remains in question whether EU leaders are eager to begin such purchases.

Jun 29 Nadal suffers shock Wimbledon defeat

Nadal suffers shock Wimbledon defeat

Rafael Nadal crashed to his worst Grand Slam defeat in seven years on Thursday when Czech journeyman Lukas Rosol, the world number 100, pulled off one of the greatest upsets in Wimbledon history.

Rosol, whose previous five visits to Wimbledon had ended in first round losses in qualifying, stunned the 2008 and 2010 champion, and 11-time Grand Slam title winner Nadal, 6-7 (9/11), 6-4, 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 in the second round.

It was a stunning upset as Nadal slumped to his earliest exit at a major since the same stage of the 2005 Wimbledon championship when he was beaten by Luxembourg's Gilles Muller.

It was also eerily similar to Nadal's stunning 2009 French Open fourth round loss to Robin Soderling when the Swede unleashed a barrage of destructive free-swinging tennis to destroy the Spanish star.

A dramatic evening of Centre Court action, which saw a 45-minute delay as the roof was closed to allow the fifth set and the match to be completed, will go down in history as one of the sport's biggest shocks.

Nadal had played in the last five Grand Slam finals and was fresh from a record-breaking seventh French Open triumph which had confirmed his status as one of the sport's greatest players.

But Rosol put on an awesome display of sustained, big-hitting that left Nadal stunned and bewildered.

Nadal, the champion in 2008 and 2010, and arriving at Wimbledon having captured a record seventh French Open title, had taken the first set on a tie-breaker before his campaign unravelled.

After Rosol had levelled the tie and taken a 2-1 lead on a break in the third, it was clear that the Czech was getting under the Spaniard's skin.

Nadal complained to the umpire over his 26-year-old opponent's constant skipping around on the baseline and his distracting habit of swishing his racquet from side to side as he was preparing to serve.

He was broken to trail 2-1 and the players were involved in a shoulder-charge at the changeover.

When Nadal went long to drop the third set, the historic upset was on the cards, especially with Rosol regularly hitting returns at 85 mph.

But Nadal dominated the fourth set, stretching to a 4-2 lead with a break and securing it 6-2 with a combination of stirring defence and thrilling counter-attacks.

All England Club officials insisted the match should be finished so the Centre Court roof was closed which meant a 45-minute delay before the conditions were right for a fifth set.

On the resumption, Rosol, playing a five-set match for just the third time in his career, broke in the first game and then held his nerve.

He sent down his 21st ace to go to match point and then claimed his historic win with a 22nd to take his place in the record books.

Rosol will face German 27th seed Philipp Kohlschreiber for a place in the last 16.

Italy's 2-1 semi-final win over Germany

Striker Mario Balotelli struck twice to seal Italy's 2-1 semi-final win over Germany on Thursday to leave the Germans' Euro 2012 ambitions in tatters while the Azzurri march on to the final.

The 21-year-old Manchester City star broke German hearts with a first-half header and sublime strike as Joachim Loew's inexperienced team -- the youngest of the 16 at Euro 2012 -- failed to cope with Cesare Prandelli's street-wise Italians.

A late penalty from Mesut Ozil proved no more than a consolation scores for the Germans whose 16-year wait for a major title continues.

Italy is now into Sunday's final in Kiev to face defending champions Spain with the Italians bidding to win their first European crown since 1968.

Victory at Warsaw's National Stadium means Italy maintain their impressive record of having never lost to Germany at a World Cup or European Championships on their eighth meeting at a major tournament.

Having dropped three of his forwards for last Friday's 4-2 quarter-final win over Greece, Loew again tinkered with his starting line-up, but this time it back-fired as the Germans lacked an effective Plan B when things went wrong.

Arsenal-bound Lukas Podolski was hauled off at half-time, striker Mario Gomez also made way for 34-year-old veteran Miroslav Klose after the break, while Toni Kroos barely troubled the Italian defence from the right wing.

Germany had a couple of golden chances early on, but the Azzurri soon asserted themselves and after Riccardo Montolivo tested Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, Italy took the lead on 20 minutes.

Antonio Cassano ghosted through two German defenders and crossed for Balotelli to beat his marker Holger Badstuber and slam his header past Neuer.

It was the first time since the Euro 2008 final Germany had fallen behind in a European Championship match after their ten wins in qualifying and their four wins so far at Euro 2012.

The perplexed looks in the German ranks told their own tale.

Rattled, the Germans tried to reassert themselves with Mesut Ozil and Gomez both squandering half chances, but Italy captain Gianluigi Buffon stood up to the challenge in goal before the Azzurri struck again.

A sublime pass from Fiorentina's Montolivo split the German defence and gave Balotelli all the space he needed to curl his shot past Neuer on 36 minutes.

With the Germans now reeling, Reus was quickly into the action after replacing Podolski and tested Buffon with a well-struck free-kick with an hour gone.

But the Italians were not to be denied their first European final since their Euro 2000 defeat to France when Claudio Marchisio fired wide on 67 minutes and again eight minutes later.

Balotelli made way for Antonio Di Natale on 70 minutes and with time running out, the Udinese forward missed a golden chance with the German defence all at sea.

A handball by Federico Balzaretti in the 92nd minute gave Germany brief hope as referee Stephane Lannoy pointed to the spot and Ozil blasted home the spot-kick, but it was too little, too late.

The Azzurri can now dream of denying world and European champions Spain a third consecutive major title on Sunday.



In the matter of allowing FDI in Retail, repeated statements have been issued by the
Government recently.One such statement of Union Commerce Minister Shri Anand
Sharma wherein he claimed the support of Kearala Government for allowing FDI has
been contradicted by Kerala Chief Minister Shri Oomen Chandy who has said that State
Government had not written to the Centre supporting the FDI as claimed by Mr. Sharma.
Such a misleading statement of Shri Sharma has questioned the creditability of the
Why the Union Government is in great haste to allow FDI in Retail by overlooking the
ground realties of Indian Retail Trade is a matter needs a probe-said the Confederation
of All India Traders (CAIT) which is spearheading a national movement against FDI in
Retail Trade. The Government must clarify the pressures which are forcing for making
such statements. The CAIT has strongly said that any move to allow FDI in Retail will
be protested tooth and nail nationwide by the traders and other Stake Holders of Retail
The CAIT has written a communication to Chief Ministers of all States and has sent
them its publication " FDI in Retail - Assumptions V/s Facts" in order to apprise them
with the ground realties and detrimental affects of FDI in Retail Trade. The CAIT has
also sought an audience with the Chief Ministers.
The CAIT regretted that on such an important issue, the Central Government did not
think it propoer to talk to Traders who are one of the important constituent of Retail
Trade in a situtation where not only the traders but farmers,labourers,hawkers,consu
mers and other sections of the retail trade are bitterly opposing FDI in Retail Trade.
The CAIT has demanded that the unanimous report of the Parliamentary Standing
Committee submitted on 8th June,2009 to Parliament should be made subject matter
of the discussion on this matter.
For more information please contact CAIT, Secretary General, Mr. Praveen Khandelwal@9891015165,

17th Voice&Data 100 annual survey FY12 reveals

Telecom equipment industry posts revenues of Rs 1,13,188 crore 
Nokia, Samsung, Cisco Top 3 players


New Delhi, June 29, 2012: The Indian telecom equipment industry posted marginally lower revenues of Rs 1,13,188 crore in 2011-12 compared to Rs 1,14,133 crore in FY2010-11, according to the 2012 annual survey of the Indian Telecom industry by CyberMedia group’s flagship journal for the telecom industry, Voice&Data.

The17th annual survey, Voice&Data 100, covered over 500 telecom companies in India spanning carrier equipment, enterprise communication equipment, and user device manufacturers.

According to the Voice&Data 100 survey, nearly half of the telecom equipment revenue came from carrier equipment manufacturers, which saw a dip of 5.06% to touch Rs 55,333 crore during the year. In the previous year, FY10-11, the segment had registered Rs 58,285 crore revenue.

Enterprise equipment grew at 8.89% to report revenues of Rs 23,183 crore in the year, up from Rs 21,291 crore in FY10-11. The user device segment that includes mobile handsets, fixed phones, data cards and tablet computers, contributed more than one-third to the total telecom equipment industry, at Rs 34,672 crore, recording a flat growth of 0.33% from Rs 34,557 crore a year ago.

“The survey bears out market apprehensions that the operators have slowed down investments in building, expanding and upgrading their networks. This could have a serious impact on Indian’s tele-density and broadband targets,” says Ibrahim Ahmad, Group Editor, Voice&Data.

The Top 10 Club

Mobile handset maker Nokia had the highest revenue during the year followed by Korean electronics major Samsung. They were followed by telecom equipment manufacturers like Cisco, Huawei, Nokia Siemens Networks, Ericsson, and Alcatel-Lucent. The Top10 club also saw inclusion of software companies like TCS, Wipro and Tech Mahindra.

Source:Voice&Data 100 Annual Survey June 2012

Voice&Data attributes the sharp decline in the carrier equipment revenues to policy uncertainty which restrained many telecom operators from releasing large scale network expansion orders. The Top 10 club also saw Samsung registering highest growth of 57.34% to capture the second position with revenues of Rs 9,000 crore, riding high on its smartphone and tablet portfolio.

Within the carrier equipment business, segments like transmission, telecom turnkey and wireless infrastructure were the biggest losers. Transmission segment dropped 21.88% to report revenues of Rs 3,825 crore (from Rs 4,896 crore last year). The telecom turnkey segment revenue dropped 65.27% to Rs 1,862 crore (from Rs 5,362 crore). The wireless infrastructure segment dipped 40.51% to record revenue of Rs 10,930 crore from Rs 18,374 crore a year ago.

The enterprise equipment business grew by 8.89% to reach Rs 23,183 crore in FY11-12 from Rs 21,291 crore in FY10-11. Enterprise cost saving equipment segments like audio-video conferencing and voice solutions showed significant growth of 16% and 15% respectively. Modem and router industry saw a negative growth as enterprises demanded futuristic and multi-tasking devices like single device working as modem, router and switch.

“Higher spend on enterprise and consumer communications in the last fiscal re-iterates increasing importance of user communications. Operators will have to enhance their services to match user expectations,” added Ahmad.

About Voice&Data100
Voice&Data100 (V&D100) is the most comprehensive annual survey of the Indian telecom equipment and services industry. It is the most trusted and widely used survey for those seeking authentic information on Indian communications. It is also the most comprehensive, as it covers a wide range of segments and is the only 'single source' of such diverse information.

The V&D100 (volume II) for 2011-12 survey will focus on telecom services and service providers, and is slated for release next month.

About CyberMedia

CyberMedia is South Asia's first and largest specialty media house, with fifteen publications (including BioSpectrum, Dare, Dataquest, PCQuest, Voice&Data, and Global Services) in the information technology, telecom, consumer electronics, and biotech areas, and is a media value chain including Internet (, events, and television. The group's media services include market research (CMR), content management and multimedia.

Parasaran and Mrinal Miri Appointed as Members of Rajya Sabha

Parasaran and Mrinal Miri Appointed as Members of Rajya Sabha

The President of India has approved the nomination of Shri. K Parasaran and Prof. Mrinal Miri as Members of Rajya Sabha. The eminent personalities have been nominated under Article 80 of the Constitution of India.
Shri. K Parasaran has been appointed for a term of six years from the date of notification to be issued by the Government. Shri Parasaran was Advocate General of Tamil Nadu and subsequently the Solicitor General of India. He was also the Attorney General of India between 1983-1989. Shri Parasaran was awarded Padma Vibhushan in the year 2011.
Prof. Mrinal Miri has been appointed to the vacancy caused due to the premature demise of Dr. Ram Dayal Munda and his tenure will be upto March 21, 2016. Prof. Miri is a noted philosopher and educationist and has been the Director of the Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla and later Vice Chancellor of North Eastern Hill University. He has been awarded with Padma Bhushan for his contribution in the field of education

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Western countries is affecting daily life in Iran:Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei  criticized the US and the EU for implementing severe sanctions against the country.Khamenei said on Wednesday that western sanctions are intended to create a rift between the Iranian people and their government. He added that such a conspiracy will ultimately fail.

Western countries are stepping up economic sanctions against Iran because of its nuclear development program.A new US law designed to increase pressure on Iran is set to take effect on Thursday. The EU will also begin an oil embargo against Iran July 1st.

The International Energy Agency said sanctions cut Iran's oil exports by 40 percent last year, from 2.5 million barrels a day to 1.5 million.The hard-line stance of western countries is affecting daily life in Iran. Residents in Teheran say they hope their government takes some measures to reduce the high cost of living.

Vietnam,China row on Oil exploration

Vietnam protests China's  on Oil exploration bid in disputed sea.Vietnam  called on China to stop developing offshore oil and gas fields in the disputed South China Sea.

Vietnam's strong protest came after China National Offshore Oil Corporation began international bidding for joint development projects. The contracts are for mining sites in the approximately 160,000-square-kilometer area near Vietnam.

President of Vietnam National Oil and Gas Group Do Van Hau said on Wednesday that China's actions are illegal. He said the mining lots lie within his country's exclusive economic zone.

A Vietnamese foreign ministry spokesperson said the lots are even closer to his country than areas which have been disputed with China for many years.He also stressed that Vietnam has already begun to conduct surveys in the area for joint projects with oversea firms.

A Chinese foreign ministry official said it is natural for China National Offshore Oil Corporation to seek bids to explore the sea. The official said that China hopes Vietnam will not violate its rights to oil and gas in the area.China's maritime authority, the State Oceanic Administration, said four patrol ships departed for the area on Tuesday.Media agencies

Ivan Gasparovic urges EU integration

Slovakia's leader spoke the need for further European economic integration in overcoming the region's credit woes.President Ivan Gasparovic spoke to media in Tokyo on Wednesday ahead of the EU summit. The meeting in Brussels will focus heavily on the debt crisis.

Gasparovic said Slovakian people wonder why they have to pay for the failures of Greece. But he added his people understand that supporting Greece is a guarantee for the future of Slovakia.

Slovakia improved its financial condition by taking strict austerity measures before introducing the euro three years ago. Many Slovakians strongly oppose giving financial support to Greece.

The president stressed integration is essential because the debt crisis can no longer be tackled independently by member states.

Mongolia's go to polls for General election

Mongolians go to polls to elect a new parliament on Thursday, with the main issue to make important choices about how to use the country's vast mineral resources.The voting began at 7AM for the general election held every 4 years to choose members of the 76-seat legislature.
Mongolian People's Party is  main ruling and Democratic Party is opposition parties campaigned with differing visions for developing coal and mineral reserves.The ruling Mongolian People's Party is open to foreign investment, while the opposition Democratic Party is cautious about foreign control.

Among the candidates is a former professional sumo wrestler known in Japan by the name of Kyokushuzan. He is vying for re-election from the Democratic Party.

  Former Yokozuna grand champion Asasyoryu's elder brother is a candidate for the Mongolian People's Party. The former Yokozuna has expressed support for his brother.

 Mongolia introduced electronic voting machines for the first time this election.Polling stations close at 8PM, after which vote counting begins immediately

'Scientific Dating of the Ancient Events from 2000 to 7000 B.C.'

Dear All,

You are cordially invited to Vimarsha the monthly discussion series of Vivekananda International Foundation.

Smt Saroj Bala (Member- Board for Industrial & Financial Reconstruction, Ministry of Finance- Govt. of India & Director- Institute of Scientific Research on Vedas)
will  speak on

'Scientific Dating of the Ancient Events from 2000 to 7000 B.C.'

on Friday, June 29, 2012

at 6:30pm

Venue : Vivekananda International Foundation,
Plot no. 3, San Martin Marg,
               New Delhi-110021

The talk will be followed by an interaction.

Please join us for tea at 6.00 pm.

Manash Bhattacharjee
Asst. Secretary


Instituto Cervantes Nueva Delhi

Instituto Cervantes Nueva Delhi                      Instituto Cervantes
Domingo 1 de julio 2012 / Sunday 1st of July 2012

Proyección: Muestra de cortometrajes vascos 2010-2011

Domingo 1 de julio, a las 4.30pm en el Auditorio. En español con subtítulos en inglés. Entrada libre.


11 cortometrajes que van de la comedia al thriller, pasando por el documental, la reflexión cinematográfica o el cine de animación, nos ofrecen una variada e interesante muestra de la creación cinematográfica vasca de los últimos años (2010 y 2011).

“Bucle” de Aritz Moreno
Un hombre se levanta y se prepara un café. Un hombre se levanta y se prepara un café. Un hombre se levanta y se prepara un café. (sic)

“La gran carrera” de Kote Camacho
Año 1914. El hipódromo de Lasarte anuncia una carrera con un premio nunca visto para el caballo ganador. Se han inscrito los ocho mejores caballos y yeguas del mundo. Aficionados y grandes apostadores venidos de todos los continentes se dan cita para participar en el gran evento: el Gran Premio del Medio Millón.

“La casa del lago” de Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia
Hace años que piensas en largarte. Mira la foto. Otra vez. Sabes dónde está. Una pocilga. Vete. Mátalo. No hables, no digas nada. Whisky. Doce de la noche. No puede explicarlo. Ella tampoco. Esta ciudad está podrida. ¿Dónde está esa vida que te prometieron tus padres?

“Lagun mina” de Jose Mari Goenaga
Ekaitz y Román se conocen en un albergue durante unas vacaciones, y se prometen amistad para toda la vida. Pero algo falla. O su vida es demasiado larga o su promesa excesivamente débil… Ahora tendrán que asumirlo.

“Daisy Cutter” de Enrique García y Rubén Salazar
Daisy Cutter cuenta la historia de una niña de apenas 10 años, Zaira, que (como tantos otros) vive la injusticia de una guerra, con la perspectiva que le permite su tierna e ingenua mirada. Zaira recoge todos los días margaritas para un amigo al que echa de menos; para no olvidarle, para no perderle...

“La media pena” de Sergio Barrejón
De madrugada, un ejecutivo está a punto de pegarse un tiro en su despacho. Cuando ya está casi apretando el gatillo, la llegada inesperada de la mujer de la limpieza le interrumpe. El ejecutivo sólo acierta a esconderse y a espiarla.

“Zeinek gehiago iraun” de Gregorio Muro
Un peligroso juego infantil trastocará la vida de Ander y de su família para siempre.

“Artalde” de Paco Sagarzazu
Un pastor perdido en la ciudad busca su rebaño. Su llamada atrae la atención de algunas personas, que deciden seguirle.

“She’s lost control” de Haritz Zubillaga
No te muevas… ni un pelo… ni pestañees…

“Coptos” de Álvaro Sau
Farid tiene 33 años. Tras años de mala vida, dejó su puesto en el McDonald’s donde trabajaba y se retiró al desierto. En el árido valle del Ryan, lejos de El Cairo, de la revolución, del mundo, conduce su tractor y reza.

“Un novio de mierda” de Borja Cobeaga
Tras cuatro meses sin verse, una chica recibe la visita de su ex novio. 

Film screening: Projection of Basque shortfilms 2010-2011

Sunday 1st of July, 4.30pm at the Auditorium. In spanish with english subtitles. Free entry.

11 shortfilms, going from comedy to thriller, documentaries, cinematographically thinking or animation, offer us a varied and interesting sample of the creativity of the Basque cinema of the last years (2010 - 2011).

“Bucle” (Loop) by Aritz Moreno
A man gets up and prepares coffee. A man gets up and prepares coffee. A man gets up and prepares coffee.  (sic)

“La gran carrera” (The great race) by Kote Camacho
The year is 1914. The Lasarte racetrack announces a race with a never-before-seen prize for the winning horse. Eight of the best horses and mares in the world have registered. Fans and heavy betters from all the continents gather to participate in the great event: the Half Million Grand Prize.

“La casa del lago” (The house on the lake) de Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia
You have been thinking about leaving for years. Look at the photo. Again. You know where it is. A pigsty. Go. Kill him. Don’t talk, say nothing. Whisky. It’s midnight. He can’t explain it. She can’t either. This city is rotten. Where is the life your parents promised you?

“Lagun mina” by Jose Mari Goenaga
Ekaitz and Román meet in a hostel during their holidays and promise a lifetime friendship. But something goes wrong. Either their life is too long or their promise too weak… but now they will have to come to terms with it.

“Daisy Cutter” by Enrique García and Rubén Salazar
Daisy Cutter tells the story of a ten year old girl, Zaira, who (like many others) experiences the injustice of war, with the perspective that her tender and naïve eyes allow her. Zaira gathers daisies every day for a friend that she misses; so as not to forget him, so as not to lose him.

“La media pena” (Half sadness) by Sergio Barrejón
At dawn, an executive is about to shoot himself in his office. When he is just about to pull the trigger, the unexpected arrival of the cleaning lady interrupts him. The executive can only manage to hide and spy on her.

“Zeinek gehiago iraun” by Gregorio Muro
A dangerous children’s’ game will disrupt the lives of Ander and his Family forever.

“Artalde” by Paco Sagarzazu
A shepherd, lost in the city, searches for his flock. His call attracts the attention of some people, who decide to follow him.

“She’s lost control” by Haritz Zubillaga
Don’t move... not an inch... don’t even blink...

“Coptos” by Álvaro Sau
Farid is 33 years old. After years of living on the edge, he left his job at McDonald’s where he worked and retired to the desert. In the arid valley of Ryan, far away from Cairo, the revolution, the world, he drives his tractor and prays.  

“Un novio de mierda” (A crappy boyfriend) de Borja Cobeaga
After three months without seeing each other, a girl receives a visit from her exboyfriend.

Instituto Cervantes Nueva Delhi
48, Hanuman Road
Connaught Place
110 001 Nueva Delhi
Tel. : 91 11 4368 19 00
Fax: 91 11 4356 86 92

Prism,NGO's open debate on new system

Prism, apolitical organisation decided to organize an open debate on New System at Jantar Mantar from October 19- 21,2012.With amendments and change in indian constitution the organisation is proposing steps to eradicate corrupt system and to rejuvenate new System. Prism said,"Everone is talking about changing the System but no one seems to have faintest idea as to what this change would be like and how would we achieve it. The change is not possible with present constitution and require numerous constitutional changes." Further NGo adds The world is looking for new world order and hope Bharat must be pioneer for the same.Prism has its theory of "Theistic Dynamic Equilibrism" for complete and wholesome change.

Pakistan release Surjeet Singh

Pak releases Indian prisoner Surjeet Singh after 30 years Indian prisoner Surjeet Singh, who has served a life term following his arrest on charges of spying in the 1980s, was freed on Thursday from a prison in eastern Pakistani city, reports said. Singh, 69, will be released from Kot Lakhpat Jail in Lahore at 10am on Thursday, a senior official of the prison department of Punjab province said. Policemen will escort Singh to the Wagah land border crossing, where he will be handed over to Indian authorities, the official, who did not wish to be named, said. Singh has been in Pakistani captivity for over 30 years. Awais Sheikh, the counsel for Singh, told the media that the Indian national was arrested by Pakistani police on charges of spying during the regime of military ruler Zia-ul-Haq. Singh was given the death sentence under the Pakistan Army Act in 1985. The death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment in 1989 by then President Ghulam Ishaq Khan. Sources said Singh had held meetings with other prisoners in Kot Lakhpat Jail on Wednesday to bid them farewell. He also requested the authorities to serve him 'sewai' to celebrate his impending release, the sources said. Singh is expected to be repatriated along with 315 Indian fishermen who were on Wednesday freed from a jail in the southern port city of Karachi. The fishermen were released as a goodwill gesture, officials said.

Clashes continue in Syria

An attack on a pro-government television near Damascus killed seven staff on Wednesday, state media said, while a rights group said 17 people died in other violence on the heels of the "bloodiest week" of the 15-month uprising. Live footage broadcast by state television showed extensive damage to the studios of Al-Ikhbariya satellite channel outside the capital with several small fires still burning. "The terrorist groups stormed the offices of Al-Ikhbariya, planted explosives in the studios and blew up them with up along with the equipment," Information Minister Omran al-Zohbi told state television in a live interview. "They carried out the worst massacre against the media, executing journalists and security staff," Zohbi said, adding that a number of staff were kidnapped. Those killed comprised three journalists and four security guards, state media said. Press watchdog Reporters Without Borders called for members of a UN observer mission, which suspended its operations on June 16 in the face of worsening violence, to visit the scene to ascertain the facts. "News organisations should not be used as targets by the parties to the conflict," the watchdog said, "However, we deplore in the strongest possible terms the broadcast by the media of messages inciting hatred and violence against civilians.." In other violence today, 10 soldiers were killed before dawn in the eastern province of Deir Ezzor, while 15 troops defected to the rebels, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. In the northwestern province of Idlib, two civilians and five soldiers were killed, among them a colonel of the elite Republican Guard. More than 15,800 people have been killed since the outbreak of the revolt against President Bashar al-Assad's regime in March last year, the Observatory said.Rebel forces and Syrian army units engaged in deadly combat around elite Republican Guard posts in the suburbs of Damascus, as 116 people were killed across the country on Tuesday. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the death toll consisted of 68 civilians, 41 soldiers and seven rebels. "Violent clashes are taking place around positions of the Republican Guard in Qudsaya and Al-Hama," eight kilometres from central Damascus, the head of the Observatory, Rami Abdel Rahman said. Twenty-eight people were killed in and around the capital, including 15 people in Al-Hama and 11 in Qudsaya during shelling by regime troops. "This is the first time that the regime uses artillery in fighting so close to the capital," Abdel Rahman said. "This development is important because it's the heaviest fighting in the area and close to the heart of the capital." Abu Omar, a spokesman for activists in the Damascus region, said via Skype that "all communication has been cut off in and around Al-Hama and Qudsaya." He charged that regime forces "stormed the areas with tanks" and also spoke of a "massacre" although he gave no further details. The official SANA news agency said, meanwhile, that government forces clashed with "armed terrorist groups" in Al-Hama. "The armed groups attacked citizens and law enforcement forces and blocked the Old Beirut road to use it as a smuggling route for weapons," SANA said. "Dozens of terrorists were killed in the clashes," while others were arrested, SANA said. Weapons were also seized, including "rocket-propelled grenade launchers, sniper rifles, machine guns and a large amount of ammunition," the agency added. The Observatory reported that five people were killed in the eastern city of Deir Ezzor, including a child, as the army pounded several neighbourhoods, while three were killed elsewhere in the province. Thirteen civilians, including two young siblings, were killed in army shelling in the northwest province of Idlib, where two rebels also died in clashes with the government troops, the Britain-based Observatory said. In central Hama province, a rebel battalion commander and a defected officer were killed during clashes between the army and rebels, it added

Competitiveness, climate, security Finn’s priorities Ministry of Finance release Finnish road map of EU presidency. Finland is set ...