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Eugene

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Boston, MA
Member since: Wed May 12, 2004, 04:41 PM
Number of posts: 46,831

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Tempers fray in Mexico as new controls frustrate U.S.-bound migrant caravan

Source: Reuters

WORLD NEWS APRIL 3, 2019 / 6:47 PM / UPDATED AN HOUR AGO

Tempers fray in Mexico as new controls frustrate U.S.-bound migrant caravan

Jose Cortez
4 MIN READ

MAPASTEPEC, Mexico (Reuters) - Tempers frayed among hundreds of mostly Central American migrants gathered on Wednesday in southern Mexico, delayed as Mexican officials sought to slow down the U.S.-bound flow that President Donald Trump is determined to turn back.

Since last week Trump has repeatedly threatened to close down the U.S.-Mexico border if Mexican officials do not do more to thwart the migrants, potentially harming tens of billions of dollars in trade, but has also praised Mexican efforts following his outbursts.

The Mexican government has vehemently denied changing policy in response to threats, but has appeared to slam the brakes on its practice of awarding so-called humanitarian visas that allow migrants from other countries to pass freely within its borders.

Without such papers, they are vulnerable to harassment and deportation from officials.

As many as 1,500 men, women and children traveling in a large group or caravan from Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Cuba were gathered in the town of Mapastepec in Chiapas state, unable to obtain the temporary visas.

-snip-


Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-immigration-mexico-caravan/tempers-fray-in-mexico-as-new-controls-frustrate-u-s-bound-migrant-caravan-idUSKCN1RF2U1

Nuclear regulators were unaware of transfer of sensitive technical information to Saudi Arabia

Source: Washington Post

Nuclear regulators were unaware of transfer of sensitive technical information to Saudi Arabia

By Steven Mufson April 2 at 7:54 PM

When the Trump administration on seven occasions authorized companies to share sensitive nuclear energy information with Saudi Arabia, it was supposed to consult with several agencies, including the independent Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

But NRC Chairman Kristine L. Svinicki testified before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on Tuesday that she did not know whether the agency had been consulted, and if so whether it had raised any concerns.

At one point Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) asked four questions in a row about the agency’s participation, pausing after each one, and Svinicki and her four fellow commissioners remained silent.

“I know you don’t have sign-off authority, but none of you at this table know whether the NRC raised any concerns about entering in these 810 authorizations?” he asked.

“I do not,” Svinicki replied.

-snip-

The exchange between Van Hollen and Svinicki illustrates growing concern in Congress over the Energy Department’s authorization of Part 810 information — nonclassified but sensitive details about nuclear energy reactors U.S. companies are trying to sell to Saudi Arabia.

-snip-


Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/nuclear-regulators-were-unaware-of-transfer-of-sensitive-technical-information-to-saudi-arabia/2019/04/02/2bf7e9ee-5587-11e9-9136-f8e636f1f6df_story.html

The Islamic State's refugees are facing a humanitarian calamity

Source: Washington Post

The Islamic State’s refugees are facing a humanitarian calamity

By Erin Cunningham and Kamiran Sadoun April 2 at 6:45 PM

AL-HOL, Syria — A humanitarian crisis is erupting in northeastern Syria as tens of thousands of people who fled intense fighting in last month’s decisive battle against the Islamic State are flooding into a desperately overcrowded tent camp atop a rocky hill here.

More than 73,000 people, mostly women and children, are now packed into the sprawling al-Hol camp, under the control of U.S.-backed Kurdish forces. The camp, which opened in 1991 to host Iraqi refugees from the Persian Gulf War, was originally designed to hold barely half that number.

Amid a sea of white tents, thousands sleep in communal spaces, and children defecate outside. The war wounded are often left untreated. Thousands more are malnourished. There are just three mobile clinics at the camp, and local hospitals are swollen with patients critically wounded in the war. Those with non-life-threatening injuries often are given painkillers or antibiotics and sent on their way.

Last week, 31 people died on the way to the camp or shortly after arriving because of traumatic injuries and malnutrition, according to the International Rescue Committee, bringing the total number of such deaths to 217.

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Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the-islamic-states-refugees-are-facing-a-humanitarian-calamity/2019/04/02/e5e1ca42-54aa-11e9-aa83-504f086bf5d6_story.html

Saudi women activists back in court as West watches

Source: Reuters

WORLD NEWS APRIL 3, 2019 / 5:07 AM / UPDATED 7 HOURS AGO

Saudi women activists back in court as West watches

Stephen Kalin
3 MIN READ

RIYADH (Reuters) - Nearly a dozen prominent Saudi women activists returned to court on Wednesday to face charges related to human rights work and contacts with foreign journalists and diplomats, in a case that has intensified Western criticism of a major Mideast ally.

Three of the women - blogger Eman al-Nafjan, academic Aziza al-Yousef and conservative preacher Ruqayya al-Mohareb - were temporarily released last week on condition they attend future sessions.

They were seen entering the courthouse on Wednesday.

Riyadh’s criminal court had been expected to rule on requests for temporary releases for the others, but sources familiar with the proceedings said no decision was announced.

Instead, the public prosecutor replied to the women’s defences, the people said without providing details. Few of the charges have been made public in the highly scrutinised case.

-snip-


Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-saudi-arrests/saudi-women-activists-back-in-court-temporary-release-ruling-expected-idUSKCN1RF0W6

A Previously Unknown Portrait of a Young Harriet Tubman Goes on View

Source: Smithsonian Magazine

A Previously Unknown Portrait of a Young Harriet Tubman Goes on View

“I was stunned,” says director Lonnie Bunch; historic Emily Howland photo album contains dozens of other abolitionists and leaders who took an active role

By Allison Keyes
smithsonian.com
March 26, 2019

The power exuded by a previously unknown portrait of Harriet Tubman is tangible. The escaped slave, who repeatedly returned to the South risking her life to bring hundreds of enslaved people North to freedom, stares defiantly into the camera. Her eyes are clear, piercing and focused. Her tightly waved hair is pulled back neatly from her face. But it is her expression—full of her strength, power and suffering—that stops viewers in their tracks.

“Suddenly, there was a picture of Harriet Tubman as a young woman, and as soon as I saw it I was stunned,” says a grinning Lonnie Bunch, founding director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. He’s talking about a portrait of Tubman contained in an 1860s-era photography album belonging to abolitionist Emily Howland.

“All of us had only seen images of her at the end of her life. She seemed frail. She seemed bent over, and it was hard to reconcile the images of Moses (one of Tubman’s nicknames) leading people to freedom,” Bunch explains. “But then when you see this picture of her, probably in her early 40s, taken about 1868 or 1869 . . . there’s a stylishness about her. And you would have never had me say to somebody ‘Harriet Tubman is stylish.’”

But Bunch, a historian with expertise in the 19th century, then looked a little deeper at the portrait of this woman Americans think they know so well. Not only did she escape slavery and conduct hundreds of others to freedom along the Underground Railroad, she served as a spy, a nurse and a cook for Union Forces during the Civil War. She also helped free more than 700 African-Americans during an 1863 raid in South Carolina, which earned her another nickname: General Tubman. Bunch says the photograph celebrates all of those facets of Tubman’s life.

-snip-


Read more: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/previously-unknown-portrait-abolitionist-harriet-tubman-young-woman-goes-view-180971796/


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