Since 2009, Premier Brad Wall’s government and Saskatchewan agencies have paid more than $3 million to a U.S. law firm to fund an ambitious lobbying onslaught in Washington, D.C., on the long-stalled Keystone pipeline proposal and other energy and trade issues.
The law firm Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough has helped the premier work the halls of Congress, hobnob with the cream of U.S. policy-makers and introduce himself to the American media-government establishment. In some cases, members of the U.S. Congress who met with Wall received political contributions from Nelson Mullins before or after their contact with the premier, according to U.S. government documents.
via Saskatchewan pays millions to open doors for Brad Wall in Washington | Toronto Star.
The original US$40 billion campaign to provide a million low-cost homes, entitled “For the Sake of Egypt’s Youth”, was initiated last March by the Dubai-listed firm and then field marshal Abdel Fattah El Sisi in the lead up to Egypt’s presidential elections.
The deal, widely seen as a symbol of this country’s commitment to Cairo’s military-backed government, came as UAE aid flowed into Egypt following the ousting of the president Mohammed Morsi.
But what was hailed early on as one of the region’s most ambitious housing projects has been hampered by issues including confusion over funding sources.
The most recent road bump came after the head of the armed forces eengineering corps, general Kamel El-Wazir, seemed to blame Arabtec for the project’s current temporary suspension by not agreeing to certain “national conditions”.
via Arabtec pushing hard in Egypt as mega project stalls | The National.
Pressing Refresh Notes: Promises…promises…right before elections. I guess it doesn’t matter where we live in the world. Same old story.
Namibia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs denounced media reports which cited a letter allegedly written by Namibia’s ambassador to China Ringo Abed, to the foreign affairs permanent secretary, concerning China’s plans to establish a naval base at Walvis Bay, and described the letter as indisputably fake. The ministry specifically mentioned The Namibian’s article on 20 January 2015, headlined “Chinese naval base for Walvis”, that story highlighted the content of a confidential letter by Abed dated 22 December to foreign affairs PS Selma Ashipala-Musavyi in which Abed is quoted as saying “a [Chinese] delegation will visit Namibia … for discussions … on the way forward regarding plans for the proposed naval base in Walvis Bay”.
via Newsline: Namibia’s Foreign Ministry Claims Letter of Ambassador To China Was Fake | Diplomatic Briefing.
So when I heard about the supposed demise, I got in touch with a few of my contacts from my days in government to see what the deal was. At one department, supervisors were effectively told that the program was over without any context. But at another federal science department, there was a bit more information presented.
According to my anonymous government contacts, the whole issue began when a VF challenged their employment status. Because VFs are paid directly from NSERC, this person argued, they should be receiving benefits as well, and treated as fully fledged employees. They took their case to the Canada Revenue Agency, who arbitrates on such matters, and the CRA ruled that VFs are employees of NSERC. As result, NSERC pulled the plug.
via Future of Visiting Fellowship postdoc program in doubt | The Lab and Field.
The American Consulate in Jerusalem has decided to hire and arm 35 Palestinian security guards from East Jerusalem to be employed as escorts to American diplomats’ convoys in the West Bank, Israeli news site Ynet reported. The plan, initiated by the consulate’s chief security officer, Dan Cronin, is a breach of a 2011 agreement between the consulate and the Israeli government, which determined that only former Israeli combat soldiers hired by the consulate would be allowed to carry weapons.
via Newsline: US consulate to arm Palestinian guards in spite of Israeli law | Diplomatic Briefing.
In anticipation of talks to re-establish diplomatic ties between the U.S. and Cuba, Miami officials say they don’t want a Cuban Consulate. Next week, a top state department official heads to Cuba to discuss how the U.S. and Cuba will restore diplomatic ties, and one thing that has to be worked out is the opening of embassies and consulates in both countries.
via Newsline: Miami Rejects Hosting Cuban Consulate, But Tampa Wants It | Diplomatic Briefing.
Yes I am confused ….
I could add that I am ignorant , not really understanding politics. Today the Canadian Foreign Minister was thrown with eggs and shoes as he was exiting the Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. An announcement made by Saeb Eriqat was condemning the Canadian government and its blind support to Israel..
As a result we throw the man with eggs??? Why did they invite him in the first place? Since when freedom of expression was so explicitly allowed? People cannot gather in tens before they are kicked out from squares. Why was it so easy to have a gathering next to the Ministry?
via Smashing eggs and burning cars…. rule of lawlessness | nadiaharhash.
Pressing Refresh Notes: I agree. It’s funny how many times one can notice how certain groups are suddenly “allowed” to do things that would NEVER be able to occur before.