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First Ministry of Peace in Latin America to be created in Costa Rica

A legislative amendment already passed into Law by Congress would permit the Justice ministry to be renamed the Ministry of Justice and Peace, instead of Justice and Grace, its current denomination. In addition, the legislative amendment will create the National System for Promotion of Peace and Citizen Coexistence, an essential point of this model initiative for Latin America.

Australia’s ABC attempts to justify rise above inflation of military spending

News managers at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation fought against my complaint over their coverage of Australia’s Defence White Paper, which provides for a continuing rise in spending on the military at three percent above inflation’s rate.
As expected, they’ve come out fighting: none of my points has the slightest validity, ABC is fully satisfied with its reporting.

A teacher barters technology for development

For the past eight years, a teacher native to Kenya has been dedicated to recuperating computers and other electronic items discarded for trash. After repairing them with a team of computer experts, he sends them to students in Kenya who have no access to these technologies. Jude Ndambuki developed a new bartering system: “if you plant 100 trees I will give you a computer.”

Lockerbie bomber released on compassionate grounds

Scotland’s Justice Minister Kenny MacAskill released the Lockerbie bomber, Abdel Basset al-Megrahi on compassionate grounds. Al-Megrahi is the only man convicted of the 1988 bombing of Pan Am flight 103 over the Scottish town of Lockerbie. MacAskill made a non reciprocal decision: compassion and mercy for Al-Megrahi although he did not show them to his victims.

North Korea requests bilateral talks with US

A North Korean diplomatic delegation has told New Mexico’s state governor Bill Richardson that Pyongyang wants bilateral talks with the United States about its nuclear programme. Pyongyang seems to have adopted a more moderate course recently: Two US journalists were released and North Korea is sending a delegation to the funeral of former South Korean president Kim Dae-jung.

US Poll: 51% View Afghan War “Not Worth Fighting”

Today is election day in Afghanistan. A new poll shows growing American opposition to the war in Afghanistan. The Washington Post-ABC News survey found 51 percent of Americans view the war in Afghanistan as not worth fighting. Just one-quarter of respondents say they support President Obama’s escalation of the Afghan war with at least 17,000 additional troops.

Disarmament: Disappointment due to Lack of Consensus

Lack of consensus between the participating countries on procedures related to the working agenda of the UNO Conference on Disarmament continues. The calendar to start the negotiations to prohibit the production of materials essential for the production of nuclear weapons is one of the questions that have led to this impasse.

Honduras breaks ties with Argentina

The new Honduran regime has severed diplomatic ties with Argentina in response to the expulsion last week of Honduran ambassador to Buenos Aires, Carmen Eleonora Ortez Williams, because of her support for the military coup. A delegation from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights is currently in Honduras to investigate mistreatment of Zelaya’s supporters.

Israel Declares Shooting of Unarmed American Activist an “Act of War”

In other Mideast news, the Israeli military has declared the shooting of an unarmed American peace activist “an act of war.” The activist, Tristan Anderson, was critically injured when Israeli soldiers fired a tear gas canister directly at his head in March. According to Anderson’s family this would mean that Israel’s government admits that it is at war with civilians.

Iraqi Cabinet Backs Referendum on Troop Withdrawal

Iraqi’s government is backing a vote that could force an early US withdrawal. On Monday, the Iraqi cabinet said it would support holding a national referendum over the US-Iraqi Status of Forces Agreement. The agreement calls for a US withdrawal by the end of 2011. But if Iraqis reject the timetable, US troops would be forced to begin pulling out nearly one year earlier.

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