Section: World

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Unrealistic Covid-19 expectations

Giuseppe Bignardi

How many more variants of concern are we going to see? Some scientists believe there may a limited number of mutations that increase the ability to spread ad evade immunity: thus, the Covid-19 virus might have already played its best cards. However, there is no certainty about this.

Nigerian military violence petition

North East Bylines

“ I am glad that we have finally had a response from the government on this, nearly nine months later and that that there is an investigation into the violence and the SARS unit has been disbanded, but I and the Nigerian diaspora in the U.K. want to see tougher action from the UK government to show that further violence is not acceptable and to help clamp down on corruption.”

Solidarity with Hong Kong protestors: global campaign 12 June

Julie Ward

Before the sentencing, Lee said: “I am ready to face the penalty and sentences. I am proud I can walk with the people of Hong Kong on the road to democracy. I want to dedicate the song ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ to the Hong Kong people. We will walk together even in darkness with hope in our heart.” Amnesty International in its latest campaign briefing describes the jailing of these opposition leaders a “violation of international law”.

MBE for campaigner for UK nationals in the EU

Clarissa Killwick

“Rights have been lost, that’s true. Our achievements pale into insignificance compared with what has been lost. I would like to expand the network we have created to include all British citizens who are committed to a positive debate on migration, and the protection of all rights. Somehow, we need to pave the way for the future of people mobility.”

Asylum policies do not reflect our country’s values

Giuseppe Bignardi

To understand how important asylum-seekers and migrants are, we need to look no further than our Cabinet Ministers! Boris Johnson is the great-grandson of a Turkish politician who sought refuge in the UK. Priti Patel’s Ugandan Indian parents migrated to the UK just years before the dictator Idi Amin ordered the expulsion of the Asians from Uganda. Dominic Raab is the son of a Jewish Czech refugee. Rishi Sunak’s Indian parents came from East Africa.

Amnesty International is sixty years old

Julie Ward

Beneson’s call to action was a heartfelt response to appalling abuse of power by state apparatus. He intended a simple year long campaign focused on ‘prisoners of conscience’. 60 years later the work of Amnesty International continues to be just as important

APPG

Global vaccine rollout: APPG session 2

Carol Westall

”Yesterday Archbishop Tutu got his jab months after young and healthy people in the UK. Why, ask yourself why we have limited supplies. Why the UK’s stance on IP hoarding and overbuying meant that someone over 80 got his vaccine on the 18 May 2021. Also we took part in the AstraZeneca trial, the Johnson and Johnson trial and Pfizer trials and others, yet we were not guaranteed access. So much for the Commonwealth.”

Theatre

Dance theatre spectacular in the North East

North East Bylines

The Two Fridas is motivated by one of the world’s most famous self-portraits [The Two Fridas by legendary Mexican artist Frida Kahlo] which is being brought to life from the canvas to the stage through an intriguing mixture of storytelling, dance, music and live performance.. It is a dance theatre spectacular.

Review

The age of surveillance capitalism

Dylan Neri

Book review: The age of surveillance capitalism In the twentieth century, two visionary texts cast their shadows over the future of our species. One was George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, with its horrific vision of a brutal totalitarian state grounded in the concept of ‘War is Peace’, in which the population is coerced into a state […]

Children’s rights: do we care?

Debbie Williams

“People don’t care about the rights of children, they only pay lip service to it, especially when a shocking story appears in the media e.g., baby P, or Marcus Rashford and the school meals story”

Covid-19 vaccines: the balance of self-interest and altruism

Giuseppe Bignardi
vaccines

Giuseppe Bignardi writes about the roll-out of vaccines across the world; the UK and US rank close to the top, but it’s also essential to consider which countries are exporting their vaccines around the world. A balance must be struck of self-interest, altruism, and diplomacy; right now, Boris Johnson has shown just selfishness.

The devil’s in the detail

Cross Border Services Group

All else being equal, why would a British tiler living in the UK be your first choice for work in Switzerland, rather than a British tiler living locally in a neighbouring EU country (of which Switzerland has several)? And why should the consumer in Switzerland be denied that choice? Within the microcosm of the Cross-Border Services group alone, this means that the translator living in the UK can legitimately deliver services on-site in Switzerland, but the translator living in Rome cannot. It would seem all UK citizens are equal, but some are more equal than others.

When is an expat not an expat?

Clarissa Killwick

Little account has been taken by either side of real human beings, their practical problems, level of integration and especially the impact on families. The UK’s post-Brexit Immigration Bill effectively shuts the door on its own citizens from returning to live in the UK after March 2022 if, with their EU spouses and family, they cannot meet the Minimum Income Requirement.

Covid passports, sporting events and international travel: more from the All Party Parliamentary Group on coronavirus

Carol Westall

“The other dimension .., is what these passports will be used for. Will they be used for international travel, will there be a matter of restricting … activities like going to a football game, will they be used to restrict everyday activities like going to a bar, going to a restaurant, will they be used to restrict essential activities like going to a supermarket or to a job. These have very different implications.

North East People

Teaching in Leeds

Jim Walker

In 1970, I returned to Britain from my teaching post at the University of Dar es Salaam and got a fixed-term job in the Overseas Education Study Group (OESG) in the Institute of Education at the University of Leeds. Our students were teachers whose governments had sent them to us to undertake advanced courses in […]

LettersUPDATED

Letters

Editor Letters

The first broken Brexit promise of 2021 was Mr Gove’s, “never to weaken the environmental protections that we have put in place while in the EU” – but already, in the first week of January, the sugar beet producers have been granted permission to use pesticides containing the neoniconitoid thiamethoxam…

Climate change catastrophe!

Robina Jacobson

[The earth has been lent to us] “for our life; it is a great entail. It belongs as much to those who follow us as it does to us, and we have no right by anything we do, to involve them in any unnecessary penalties, or to deprive them of the benefit we have in our power to bequeath.”

North East People

Teaching in East Africa

Jim Walker

What a difference from Uganda in climate! Fort Portal is over 5000 feet above sea level, Kampala is over 4000 feet but Dar es Salaam is at sea level. The university is on a hill outside the city but, although we got a bit of a sea breeze, the humidity was very uncomfortable. Largely owing to the influence of the President, Julius Nyerere, political development in Tanzania was more advanced than it had been in Uganda but one British custom remained unchanged: the working day.

North East People

Teaching in Uganda: Part 2

Jim Walker

As I mentioned in the first part of Teaching in Uganda, the teachers’ wives did not work. At that time none of the couples had children living with them, they had a “houseboy” to do all the work around the house and a “shamba boy” to look after their garden. But my wife Anne could not stand the idea of such idleness. She was a nurse by profession but the school had no post for such a person.