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Issue #1685      May 20, 2015

Region Briefs

According to an interview with Basir Noori, spokesman of the National Union of Afghanistan Workers, more than 7.2 million eligible workers in the country are currently unemployed, nearly 24 percent of its total population. More than four million Afghans live in the neighbouring countries of Pakistan and Iran. Najibullah, an Afghan waiting to enter Iran for work, said that unemployment and poverty forced him to leave the country to find a job to support his family. Another Afghan, Karimullah, who has a similar background to Najibullah, said that he will not leave the county if he can find a job with a monthly wage of around $190 dollars.

Vietnamese President, Truong Tan Sang, recently visited the Czech Republic where he received a warm welcome from the Communist Party of the Czech Republic and Moravia Chairman, Vojtech Filip. Both sides praised the bilateral cooperation between the two countries in the past 65 years. The President believed that the Czech Party would play a bigger and a more important role in domestic politics. The Chairman congratulated Vietnam on the successes in economic reform and that he wished to increase cooperation.

According to a press conference in Hanoi, Vietnam, the banking sector will provide more than A$700 million to the Central Highlands region, funding power plant construction, transportation and agriculture development. The banking sector in socialist countries provides funds to alleviate poverty and hunger, ensure social security, improve living standards and upgrade infrastructure.

A Chinese boss spent more than A$16 million, giving 6,400 of his employees a free four-day long trip to France and Monaco, in order to celebrate his company’s 20th funding anniversary and to show appreciation to the workers.

More than 24 people (including the Socialist Party of Malaysia Chief) were arrested after participating in a large Malaysian May Day rally by thousands of people. Most of the arrested were human rights activists and reform campaigners. There was increasing criticism of the country’s Sedition Act that empowers police to arrest the political opposition to the government. Malaysian Prime Minister, Najib Razak, recently pushed for even harsher penalties, allowing people to be detained without judicial review.

The US Human Rights delegation to the UN faced furious questioning and criticism from more than 100 countries’ UN representatives. A recent UN human rights record of the United States showed that country’s violations in law enforcement abuse, racial, sexual and religious discrimination, and illegal detention and torture. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Hua Chunying, said that any country which went through a UN review “should be modest enough to listen to the advice of various countries, work hard to resolve its own human rights problems and improve its human rights status”.

Next article – Culture & Life – Candidates and capitalism

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