Category Archives: Europe

Italy condemns Haiti earthquake relief efforts as ‘vanity parade’

The Guardian
Guido Bertolaso, who led Italy’s relief efforts after L’Aquila quake, condemns lack of leadership among foreign aid missions

An Italian government official has criticised the presence of US soldiers in Haiti after the earthquake, saying they don't have a 'close rapport with the territory'. Photograph: Carlos Barria/Reuters

The Italian government official who led the country’s response to the L’Aquila earthquake has condemned relief efforts in Haiti as a disorganised “vanity parade”, ahead of an international conference on rebuilding the devastated half-island.

Guido Bertolaso, the head of Italy’s civil protection service, said there had been a fundamental lack of leadership thus far in foreign aid missions to Haiti, warning also that the large US military mission in the country was not entirely helpful. Continue reading Italy condemns Haiti earthquake relief efforts as ‘vanity parade’

Viewpoint: Young Catholics should not be encouraged to join the Army

Independent Catholic News
By: Catherine Hand
Catherine Hand, from Tideswell in Derbyshire writes:
“I do not think it right that the Army should be allowed to come to a careers evening in our school,” I said as a governor of our local Catholic comprehensive school.  Amazement, surprise and incomprehension greeted me. Continue reading Viewpoint: Young Catholics should not be encouraged to join the Army

Nigeria-Italy Human Trafficking Rises Sharply

One World
ROME, Sep 11 (IPS) – An alarming rise has been recorded in the number of Nigerian girls trafficked to Italy.

Women farming in a field in Nigeria. MikeBlyth (flickr)
Women farming in a field in Nigeria. MikeBlyth (flickr)

Last year 1,782 young girls from Nigeria arrived in Lampedusa, compared to 166 in 2007, human rights organisations say. Lampedusa, an Italian island 205 km from the Italian coast, located between Tunisia and Sicily, is used as a holding centre for migrants, particularly from Africa.

Human trafficking has become the third biggest source of income for criminal organisations globally, following drug and arms, according to a report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) published earlier this year. Close to 80 percent of people trafficked, mostly women, are sexually exploited, the report says. Continue reading Nigeria-Italy Human Trafficking Rises Sharply

Africa: Economy and Human Rights

AfricaFocus Bulletin Sent by Sr Michael Theresa Brauer, SND

Editor’s Note 

“Our first demand in our new campaign [“Demand Dignity”] is to the G-2 leaders, USA and China. The United States does not accept the notion of economic, social and cultural rights while China does not respect civil and political rights. We call on both governments to sign up to all human rights for all.” – Irene Khan, Amnesty International Continue reading Africa: Economy and Human Rights

Switzerland eases banking secrecy

BBC

UBS gave US authorities details of 300 American clients last month
UBS gave US authorities details of 300 American clients last month

Switzerland, the world’s largest offshore financial centre, has agreed to accept concessions on bank secrecy.

However, while it will now abide by international rules on bank data sharing, it said it would only respond to “concrete and justified” requests.

The government added that it would still protect banking customers from “unjustified watching from abroad”.
Continue reading Switzerland eases banking secrecy

Catholic project helps migrants find work, make London their home

By Simon Caldwell
Catholic News Service

LONDON (CNS) — George Tatar has slept on the streets in five different countries since he left Romania two years ago. For the last eight months he has been living out of a sleeping bag in central London. From shop doorways, underpasses and subways he has learned to love the city. Now he wants to stay.
Continue reading Catholic project helps migrants find work, make London their home

Report from annual J&P Network conference

Independent Catholic News

On the bright, sunny weekend of 18 – 20 July over 350 J&P activists from across England and Wales gathered at Swanwick for “Hear My People Cry”, the 30th annual National Justice and Peace Network conference, organised in this year of the Capital of Culture by Liverpool archdiocese J&P Commission. The conference aimed to shine the light of faith-filled living onto some of the undersides of modern life, without leaving people feeling that they were powerless to work for change. Before looking at some of the problems faced in communities, Fr Tom Cullinan reminded delegates about the Pastoral Cycle. There was a sigh of recognition when he pointed out that all charisms have their shadow side and that the shadow for J&P is self-righteousness. Thus forewarned, delegates were invited to See – Judge ­ Act. Continue reading Report from annual J&P Network conference