Connect with us

News

Egypt’s Sisi, Biden discuss Gaza cease-fire, reconstruction

Published

 on

U.S. President Joe Biden called Egypt’s President Abdelfattah al-Sisi on Monday and they discussed strengthening the Gaza ceasefire, urgent humanitarian aid to the strip and international reconstruction efforts, the Egyptian presidency said.

The two leaders also discussed ways to revive the peace process between Israelis and Palestinians after the latest wave of violence between the two sides, the presidency said in a statement.

Egypt brokered the ceasefire, now in its fourth day after 11 days of hostilities. Cairo will be a stop during the visit of U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken to the region later on Monday.

“Biden made clear his country’s determination to work to restore calm and restore conditions as they were in the Palestinian territories, as well as coordinating efforts with all international partners to support the Palestinian Authority as well as reconstruction,” the statement said.

In Washington, the White House said in a statement that Biden in the call thanked Egypt for its “successful diplomacy and coordination with the United States” to end the hostilities.

Biden and Sisi discussed the urgent need to deliver humanitarian assistance in Gaza and support rebuilding efforts “in a manner that benefits the people there and not Hamas”, it said.

It was Biden’s second call to Sisi within days to discuss the conflict. But this time, the discussion was expanded to bilateral relations and some regional issues, including Libya and Iraq.

Biden and Sisi exchanged views on the giant Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, which Ethiopia is building on the Blue Nile and Egypt sees as an existential threat, the presidency said. Sudan is concerned about the dam’s safety and about regulating water flows through its own dams and water stations.

The statement said “it was agreed to strengthen diplomatic efforts during the coming period in order to reach an agreement that preserves water and developmental rights for all parties.”

The White House statement said Biden “acknowledged Egypt’s concerns about access to Nile River waters and underscored the U.S. interest in achieving a diplomatic resolution that meets the legitimate needs of Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia.”

Sisi and Biden also discussed human rights in Egypt and their “commitment to engage in a transparent dialogue… in this regard,” the presidency said.

Biden “underscored the importance of a constructive dialogue on human rights in Egypt,” according to the White House statement.

Sisi, who ousted the Muslim Brotherhood from power in 2013, has overseen an extensive crackdown on political dissent that has steadily tightened in recent years. He has said there are no political prisoners in Egypt and that stability and security are paramount.

(Reporting by Mohamed Wali and Nadine Awadalla; writing by Nayera Abdallah and Mahmoud Mourad; Editing by Leslie Adler and Dan Grebler)

Continue Reading

News

Hundreds more unmarked graves found at erstwhile Saskatchewan residential school

Published

 on

An indigenous group in Saskatchewan on Thursday said it had found the unmarked graves of an estimated 751 people at a now-defunct Catholic residential school, just weeks after a similar, smaller discovery rocked the country.

The latest discovery, the biggest to date, is a grim reminder of the years of abuse and discrimination indigenous communities have suffered in Canada even as they continue to fight for justice and better living conditions.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he was “terribly saddened” by the discovery at Marieval Indian Residential School about 87 miles (140 km) from the provincial capital Regina. He told indigenous people that “the hurt and the trauma that you feel is Canada’s responsibility to bear.”

It is not clear how many of the remains detected belong to children, Cowessess First Nation Chief Cadmus Delorme told reporters, adding that oral stories mentioned adults being buried at the site.

Delorme later told Reuters some of the graves belong to non-indigenous people who may have belonged to the church. He said the First Nation hopes to find the gravestones that once marked these graves, after which they may involve police.

Delorme said the church that ran the school removed the headstones.

“We didn’t remove the headstones. Removing headstones is a crime in this country. We are treating this like a crime scene,” he said.

The residential school system, which operated between 1831 and 1996, removed about 150,000 indigenous children from their families and brought them to Christian residential schools, mostly Catholic, run on behalf of the federal government.

“Canada will be known as a nation who tried to exterminate the First Nations,” said Bobby Cameron, Chief of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations, which represents 74 First Nations in Saskatchewan. “This is just the beginning.”

OLD WOUNDS

Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which published a report that found the residential school system amounted to cultural genocide, has said a cemetery was left on the Marieval site after the school building was demolished.

The local Catholic archdiocese gave Cowessess First Nation C$70,000 ($56,813) in 2019 to help restore the site and identify unmarked graves, said spokesperson Eric Gurash. He said the archdiocese gave Cowessess all its death records for the period Catholic parties were running the school.

In a letter to Delorme on Thursday, Archbishop Don Bolen reiterated an earlier apology for the “failures and sins of Church leaders and staff” and pledged to help identify the remains.

Heather Bear, who went to Marieval as a day student in the 1970s and is also vice-chief of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations, recalled a small cemetery at the school but not of the size revealed on Thursday.

“You just didn’t want to be walking around alone in (the school),” she recalled. There was a “sadness that moves. And I think every residential school has that sadness looming.”

The Cowessess First Nation began a ground-penetrating radar search on June 2, after the discovery of 215 unmarked graves at the Kamloops Residential School in British Columbia outraged the country. Radar at Marieval found 751 “hits” as of Wednesday with a 10% margin of error, meaning at least 600 graves on the site.

The Kamloops discovery reopened old wounds in Canada about the lack of information and accountability around the residential school system, which forcibly separated indigenous children from their families and subjected them to malnutrition and physical and sexual abuse.

Pope Francis said in early June that he was pained by the Kamloops revelation and called for respect for the rights and cultures of native peoples. But he stopped short of the direct apology some Canadians had demanded.

Thursday was a difficult day, Delorme told Reuters. But he wants his young children to know “we will get the reconciliation one day with action like today.”

($1 = 1.2321 Canadian dollars)

(Reporting by Anna Mehler Paperny in Toronto and Moira Warburton in Vancouver; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama, Alistair Bell, Grant McCool and Daniel Wallis)

Continue Reading

News

Teamsters votes to fund and support Amazon workers

Published

 on

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, a labor union in the United States and Canada, said on Thursday it has voted to formalize a resolution to support and fund employees of Amazon.com Inc in their unionization efforts.

Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

(Reporting by Eva Mathews in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

Continue Reading

News

Citigroup names new sales head for Treasury and Trade Solutions unit

Published

 on

Citigroup Inc has named Steve Elms as the new sales head for the bank’s Treasury and Trade Solutions (TTS) unit effective immediately, according to an internal memo shared by a company spokesperson.

Elms, who will oversee the management of the global sales teams, has been involved with the bank’s TTS division for over 10 years, according to his LinkedIn profile.

TTS is a division of the bank’s Institutional Clients group. The segment offers cash management and trade services and finance to multinational corporations, financial institutions and public sector organizations around the world.

(Reporting by Niket Nishant in Bengaluru and David Henry in New York; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri)

Continue Reading

Trending