By Dialogo July 24, 2014 Special operations and commando forces from Belize, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, the United States and Uruguay will participate in the competition. The opening ceremony for the 10th Fuerzas Comando exercise kicked off the competition, July 23. Prior to the start of the competition, the teams spent two days validating the events and their equipment in preparation for the exercise. The grueling eight-day competition will test the elite forces in areas such as physical fitness, weapons marksmanship, aquatic skills and tactical capabilities. The exercise concludes with a multi-national airborne operation and wing exchange ceremony, July 30, and the closing ceremony, July 31. The Countering Terrorism Fellowship Program or CTFP will take place simultaneously during the competition. This year, senior military and government officials from more than 20 nations will gather in Bogota, July 28-30, to discuss regional challenges such as transnational organized crime and illicit trafficking. The Fellowship Program is designed to improve military-to-military relations and provides a collaborative environment for regional military leaders. Both the exercise and Fellowship Program are aimed at enhancing training and strengthening regional and multinational cooperation, mutual trust, readiness and interoperability of special operations forces in the Western Hemisphere.
UN Secretary-General António Guterres said that women held a central role in UN peacekeeping operations because they had greater access to local communities, improved the protection of civilians and promoted human rights in the line of duty.But the outbreak threatens to upend their most vital work.As a civil military coordination (CIMIC) officer embedded with UNIFIL, First Lt. Rima Eka Tiara Sari is used to interacting with the local community, but now she is mostly coordinating remotely with local authorities and nongovernmental organizations because of the pandemic.“We still do [border patrols] while following protocols like wearing masks, using hand sanitizer and gloves,” Rima told reporters in a virtual briefing on Wednesday, hosted by the UN Information Center in Jakarta. In many of the world’s conflict regions where health may be one of the first casualties, the coronavirus poses a discernible threat to the local population.This is largely the case in south Lebanon, where sporadic skirmishes still occur at the border with Israel, and the only medical facilities are located at the compound of the United Nations peacekeeping mission.The COVID-19 outbreak has had the unintended consequence of putting an end to all direct contact with the Lebanese people, a vital aspect to the work female peacekeepers do, according to Indonesian peacekeepers with the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL). “But other activities like the various [civilian] training programs are postponed until the COVID-19 outbreak ends,” added the 37-year-old psychology graduate from Semarang, Central Java.UNIFIL was formed in 1978 to oversee the withdrawal of Israeli forces from Lebanon and to assist the Lebanese government in restoring its authority. Among its operational activities is patrolling along the “Blue Line” border demarcation between Lebanon and Israel, established by the UN in 2000.Another Indonesian UNIFIL operative, Second Sgt. Yazella Agustin, also lamented that the outbreak had greatly reduced her interaction with civilians.“We can only contact them by phone to ask them about the latest situation, whether it is a problem caused by the coronavirus, an economic situation or other things,” Yazella said at Wednesday’s press briefing.Many medical workers on the forefront of the COVID-19 response are putting their own health at risk to protect the Lebanese people and the UN peacekeepers stationed there. But even such crucial services had been forced to stop, said First Sgt. Imakulata Ngamel, an Indonesian Air Force nurse stationed with the UNIFIL’s Indonesian battalion. “We can no longer accept local patients,” she told the briefing.Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi on Thursday reiterated the nation’s concerns about the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis on countries in conflict, that Indonesia was committed to upholding any and all efforts to resolve conflict and build peace.Earlier this month, the minister noted that the already vulnerable situation in conflict countries had “now worsened […] due to limited health infrastructure, fragile security, challenging economic situations and humanitarian conditions”.According to data on May 29 compiled by statistics site Worldometer, 1,168 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Lebanon, with 26 total deaths. While 699 people have recovered, the country’s economy has been hit hard, with businesses closing down and people losing their jobs.Separately, the Foreign Ministry’s director general for multilateral cooperation, Febrian Ruddyard, said that the safety and security of Indonesian peacekeepers were of utmost priority.“During Indonesia’s presidency of the UN Security Council last year, we specifically raised the issue of the safety and security of peacekeepers through training and capacity building,” he said.Febrian, who leads Indonesia’s Peace Maintenance Mission Coordination Team (TKMPP), said that the government was closely monitoring the latest developments in the field while ensuring that all missions followed the UN’s COVID-19 health protocols.He said that Indonesia was also deliberating a draft UN Security Council resolution on managing the pandemic amid the challenging conditions in conflict areas.“We are paying very close attention to our peacekeepers because they are our assets that we lend to the world, in this case to the UN,” said Febrian.Friday is the 20th anniversary of the International Day of UN Peacekeepers. The day is paying special tribute to female peacekeepers with this year’s theme, “Women in Peacekeeping: A Key to Peace”.UN Undersecretary-General for Peace Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix said in a statement that “ensuring women’s meaningful, equal and full participation in peace operations, as well as in peace and political processes, is key to protecting civilians and building durable peace”.However, women represent just 6 percent of all uniformed military, police, justice and corrections personnel in field missions, according to the UN.As a nonpermanent member of the UN Security Council, Indonesia has advocated for women’s participation in peace processes with an aim to increase the deployment of female peacekeepers to more than 3 percent at present.Out of the 2,852 military and police officers Indonesia has deployed to nine UN peacekeeping operations around the world, only 159 are women.Topics :
ERAFP, the €16bn French public sector pension fund, is to lower the carbon output of a €750m equity portfolio by more than one-third.The scheme – a signatory to the Montreal Carbon Pledge together with PGGM, the UK’s Environment Agency Pension Fund and AP4 – said it would be working with French manager Amundi to lower the carbon intensity of one of its portfolios by 40%.It said the portfolio’s index would employ a ‘best in class’ approach, additionally excluding the 5% of companies deemed most polluting and the bottom 20% of companies in each sector.“While monitoring this mandate closely, ERAFP will continue its work on measuring carbon and climate risks with a particular focus on supporting research and development initiatives aimed at assessing the alignment of investments with climate objectives,” the fund added in a statement. Julian Poulter, executive director of the Asset Owners Disclosure Project, said the main argument for reducing the carbon footprint was not about morals or ethics but financial risk.Philippe Desfossés, chief executive at ERAFP, added: “It is hard to dispute that carbon is a risk. So how can we fulfil our duty of trust if we don’t implement the systems necessary to assess this risk to reduce it? And worse still, having measured the risk, we don’t disclose it to stakeholders?”The Montreal Carbon Pledge hopes to attract institutions worth $3trn to the initiative in time for the Paris climate change talks.Swedish buffer fund AP4 and France’s Fonds de Réserve pour les Retraites previously committed €1bn each to low-carbon indices designed with Amundi.,WebsitesWe are not responsible for the content of external sitesLink to homepage of Montreal Carbon Pledge
Image courtesy of MHPAThe United Kingdom has booked a couple of Qatari liquefied natural gas cargoes for its two import facilities at the Milford Haven waterway. The 210.110-cbm LNG carrier, Duhail is scheduled to dock at the Dragon LNG terminal at Waterston, Milford Haven in Pembrokeshire on April 20.The second cargo is heading to the South Hook liquefied natural gas terminal onboard the Al Sadd LNG carrier. The vessel with 210,000-cbm cargo capacity is scheduled to arrive at the facility on April 23.Both cargoes have been lifted at the Ras Laffan liquefied natural gas complex in Qatar the shipping data from the Milford Haven Port Authority shows.The South Hook LNG terminal, owned by Qatar Petroleum, ExxonMobil and Total, can provide around 20 percent of Britain’s natural gas requirements.The Dragon LNG terminal at Waterston, Milford Haven in Pembrokeshire, is owned by Shell (50 percent) and Petronas (50 percent).The facility has a maximum gas send out rate to the NTS of 7.6 billion cubic meters of gas per annum. The terminal can supply up to 10 percent of the UK’s energy needs. LNG World News Staff
Sharing is caring! Tweet Share Share Flag of Barbados. Image via: flagsofnet.comBRIDGETOWN, Barbados — Barbados Fertility Centre (BFC) will be featured in the Vanguard documentary ‘Under the knife abroad’, which airs on Monday 14 November 9:00pm PST/8:00pm CT on Current TV. The documentary looks at the future of US healthcare and how many Americans are forced to leave their homes for affordable treatment outside of the US. BFC is a JCI accredited centre of excellence for IVF treatment and is considered to be one of the leaders in the field of reproductive medicine with success rates as high as 71% for women under 35. These success rates are attributed to the cutting edge technology employed by the medical team combined with the relaxing option of undergoing treatment on the Caribbean island of Barbados, which is only 3 hours from Miami and 4 hours from New York with daily direct flights. With treatment costs less than half at BFC of what US couples are paying for IVF at home. The airing of the documentary also coincides with the launch of The Fertility App, available from the App store, which has been developed by BFC to support every woman who has made the life changing decision to start a family covering everything from ovulation through to a positive pregnancy test. Dr Juliet Skinner, head clinician at BFC said. “We pride ourselves on offering our patients the latest in technology to help them conceive, and are delighted to be able to share our knowledge with women across the globe via The Fertility App.” Infertility affects one in six couples worldwide, and if a couple tries to conceive for more than 12 months without success then they need to seek medical advice. The app has been designed to help women conceive with an ovulation calculator, which is connected to the calendar. This then syncs with the users device to send them alerts and reminders. The user can add appointments and medications and there is a full medical glossary explaining all the medical terms associated with both male and female fertility. There is also a full description of pre conception supplements and medications and their effects on the body when trying to conceive. BFC have also compiled a list of the most frequently asked questions from their patients and there is a healthy lifestyle section to improve a couple’s chance of success. Within the Fertility App there is the opportunity to connect with BFC on Facebook and Twitter for daily updates from the medical team, they can also watch videos on the BFC YouTube channel and connect with other people trying for a baby in the patient support forum. If a couple have had no success after 12 months and need medical assistance they can also connect directly with the BFC medical team from within the app and request a consultation with Dr Skinner or go directly to the BFC website for more information. Caribbean News Now 15 Views no discussions Share HealthLifestyle Barbados leads the way in fertility healthcare for US patients by: – November 11, 2011