Politics

Erdogan Is Weak. And Invincible.

Turkey’s president has rarely been so unpopular. He’s likely to dominate this week’s local elections anyway. Steven A. Cook FP No one ever prospered by predicting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s political demise, but on the eve of Turkey’s local elections this weekend, he and his Justice and Development Party (AKP) seem weaker than ever. If he were not feeling political pressure, he would not be featuring the grotesque video of the Christchurch mosque massacre at campaign rallies, nor would ... Read More »

The strategic consequence of the Chagos Islands legal dispute

At the end of last month, the African archipelago nation of Mauritius secured an important legal victory in its territorial and maritime disputes against its former coloniser, the United Kingdom. Bec Strating Lowy Interpreter The International Court of Justice (ICJ) produce an advisory opinion that rejected the UK’s claims to sovereignty over the Chagos Islands, a small group of atolls in the Indian Ocean. It found instead that the UK had unlawfully separated the islands from the former colony of ... Read More »

Australia’s big media companies would face breakup under Greens’ ‘blow torch’ policy

Sarah Hanson-Young says party would put ‘public interest journalism and the public good’ ahead of profits Amy Remeikis Guardian Australia’s big media companies would be put under a “blow torch” under the federal Greens’ policy, which places breaking up the nation’s media concentration front and centre. Sarah Hanson-Young said the Greens’ policy, finalised in the wake of the Christchurch terror attack and subsequent coverage, as well as the recent Tayla Harris trolling and response, would “reorient priorities” to put “public interest journalism and the public good” ahead ... Read More »

Decentralisation in Tunisia: Consolidating Democracy without Weakening the State

The decentralisation process is polarising Tunisia and risks fueling social and political tensions. ICG In order to fulfill its promise – to reduce socio-regional inequalities and improve public services – all sides must compromise on a new understanding of decentralisation that includes strengthening state services nationwide. Executive Summary Tunisia’s decentralisation process is increasingly in disarray. Through this reform, mandated by the new constitution adopted in January 2014, the central state is to cede certain of its powers to actors and ... Read More »

Australia’s racist image and the communities of faith

Australia has been known around the world for many years now as the rich, empty, selfish country that turns away boatloads of asylum seekers, pays people smugglers to take their human cargo elsewhere, incarcerates children and enacts other appalling human rights abuses. Alan Austin Independent Australia How has it come to this? Australia is now being reported widely as the country that produced the monster who perpetrated one of the world’s deadliest attacks targeting a religious group and an elected senator who ... Read More »

Brexit: It’s so obvious the will of the people has changed – Christine Jardine MP

It’s time for Theresa May to stop pretending the UK is united in its desire to leave the European Union. It never was and the public mood is radically different to three years ago, writes Christine Jardine MP. The Scotsman I could not believe how quickly the numbers were rising. It was changing so quickly that every time you said the latest figure out loud it was instantly out of date. Less than 24 hours after the Prime Minister had ... Read More »

New ABC chairman has history calling out ‘problems’ with multiculturalism

“There are problems with multiculturalism and it’s about time our politicians had the guts to mention some of them,”  wrote Ita Buttrose in 1988 when she was editor-in-chief of the Sun-Herald. Jennifer Duke The Age In the column, Buttrose talks about two-thirds of voters wanting a reduction in immigration levels, Australians fearing “Asianisation” and her hopes for a referendum on immigration. “I don’t object to specific groups of people, linked to their country of birth, congregating in a specific area, but ... Read More »

Algeria opposition propose six-month political transition

A group of Algerian opposition parties and unions proposed on March 23 a “roadmap” to end a political crisis and weeks of protests sparked by the veteran president’s bid to stay in power. ALGIERS – Agence France-Presse Hurriyet President Abdelaziz Bouteflika said on February 22 he would run for a fifth term in April 18 elections, despite concerns about his ability to rule, triggering an outcry in the country which has since… The 82-year-old, who uses a wheelchair and has rarely appeared ... Read More »

Where #MeToo Came From, and Where It’s Going

The movement is moving the culture beneath the law of sexual abuse. Catharine A. MacKinnon The Atlantic From experience, women often assume that any opposition to power will produce retaliation followed by retrenchment: not only that any progress made will be clawed back, but that those pushing for it will be punished. While often realistic, fear of blowback can impede insistence on change and the collective mobilization it requires. Anxiety about backlash, however well founded, keeps one’s antennae endlessly attuned ... Read More »

Secret recordings allege excessive force by guards in Australia’s detention centres

Leaked video and audio reveals tension as onshore detention centres become more like prisons and increasingly house people awaiting deportation Helen Davidson The Guardian Leaked video, audio and images have revealed allegations of excessive force and harassment inside Australia’s network of onshore detention centres. Last year the federal court overruled a ban on detainees having phones, which has allowed snippets of life inside the centres – long closed to media and cloaked in secrecy – to be recorded and leaked out. ... Read More »

Hagia Sophia might be reverted to a mosque, Erdoğan says

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Sunday voiced the possibility of reverting the Hagia Sophia, which has been used as a museum since 1935 and is considered one of the world’s wonders, to a mosque. Daily Sabah “This is not unlikely. We might even change its name to Ayasofya Mosque,” Erdoğan said during a live interview with Turkish broadcaster TGRT. “This is not a strange proposal,” he said regarding the calls to convert the historical building to serve the purpose it ... Read More »

‘Nothing changed at all’ for ISIL sexual violence victims: Nobel laureate Nadia Murad

Despite finding widespread support globally, Nobel Peace Prize winner Nadia Murad has said she feels disappointed that none of the ISIL militants who raped and tortured Yazidiwomen have been… İpek İzci – ISTANBUL Hurriyet “I got e-mails from all over the world. Some people encourage me, some say that they embrace me and my people, some others offer help. I have been exhausted in the last two years. I work hard in the advocacy of vulnerable people, but nothing has changed at all. That makes me very upset,” she told daily ... Read More »

A proposed name for a modern language

One of the features of the Prespes agreement (a remarkable document, because both sides had been willing to accept some things that they would have fought bitterly against in the past) was that the language of the Republic of… John Melville-Jones ekathimerini I am pleased that Greece and North Macedonia are working together to develop a good relationship, although, as I have often said, it will take at least one generation before the… However, in this case, I think that ... Read More »

US and NATO must stand up to Russian aggression on the seas

Five years ago, masked Russian troops in unmarked green uniforms disembarked on the Crimean shore. By Cmdr. Tony Chavez The Hill Within days, Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in the most brazen military land grab since World War II. Much of the focus in the intervening years has been on the ongoing conflict in Donbas in eastern Ukraine. But what has yet to be fully appreciated in the West is that this is, in motives and actions, as much or ... Read More »

David McWilliams: Europe is glued to energy-rich Russia

As Putin marks 20 years in power, he knows how much the world needs his country David McWilliams The Irish Times As the train screeches to a halt, the young man, in his slim-fit Tom Ford suit, alights energetically. This is Revolution Square station, deep beneath Moscow’s congested boulevards. Built in 1938, the station is one of the gems of the Moscow metro system, itself one of the finest pieces of public transport infrastructure in the world. Stalin understood symbols. ... Read More »

World’s tallest building lit up with image of Jacinda Ardern

The world’s tallest building has been lit up with a giant image of New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern embracing a woman at the Kilbirnie mosque in Wellington. Joel MacManus The Sydney Morning Herald The Burj Khalifa, an 829-metre-tall skyscraper in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, beamed out a photo taken by Wellington photographer Hagen Hopkins, as well as the Arabic word “salam” and its English translation, “peace”. Sheik Mohammed, the prime minister and vice-president of the UAE, and ruler of ... Read More »