Sunday, 12 May 2019

The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) said on Saturday that 222 illegal Ethiopian migrants were repatriated from the war-torn Yemen since May 6.

The migrants, who were voluntarily repatriated from Yemen’s capital Sana’a to Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa since on Monday with the help of IOM, were “unable to continue to support themselves or fund their fare home,’’ the UN migration agency said in a statement on Saturday.

“The migrants were left stranded in a country experiencing a deadly conflict,’’ an IOM’s statement read.

According to IOM, the latest flight on Saturday brought back home some 46 Ethiopian nationals, increasing the total number of people assisted in the previous three flights since on Monday to 222.

IOM also noted that “ in spite of the ongoing conflict in Yemen, migrants seeking economic opportunities in Gulf countries continued to make the treacherous journey by land and sea to the Arabian Peninsula.’’

“All along the route, migrants face many challenges in accessing protection and assistance.

”IOM is committed to supporting Yemen and the region in managing migration in a sustainable and humane way,’’ IOM said.

The latest repatriation efforts is said to be the first return movement to take place from Sana’a since mid-March 2019, said the UN migration agency.

“IOM was only able to resume air movements from Yemen in November 2018, having had to suspend them just after the conflict broke out in 2015,’’ IOM said.

Estimates suggest that thousands of Ethiopians trafficked every year expressing optimism to reach the Arabian Peninsula, via Djibouti and Yemen.

In order to look for better economic opportunities in major Middle Eastern countries’ informal job markets, mainly with an aim to find informal jobs in Yemen’s northern neighbour Saudi Arabia.

Desperate Ethiopian migrants, who often attempt to cross the dangerous Red Sea route via neighbouring nation Djibouti, regularly endured deadly incidents along the Red Sea as well as imprisonment and killings in the war-torn Yemen.

In recent years, the Ethiopian government has taken out advertisements in local print and broadcast media outlets to warn its nationals on the dangers of illegal migration, with only limited success.

Published in Travel & Tourism

President Donald Trump has warned China that it should strike a trade deal with the United States now, otherwise an agreement would be far worse for them if it has to be negotiated in his second term.

Washington and Beijing are locked in a trade battle that has seen mounting tariffs, sparking fears the dispute will damage the global economy.

Two days of talks ended Friday with no deal. China’s top negotiator said the two sides would meet again in Beijing at an unspecified date, but warned that China would make no concessions on “important principles.”

“I think that China felt they were being beaten so badly in the recent negotiation that they may as well wait around for the next election, 2020, to see if they could get lucky & have a Democrat win — in which case they would continue to rip-off the USA for $500 Billion a year,” Trump said in a tweet Saturday.

“The only problem is that they know I am going to win (best economy & employment numbers in U.S. history, & much more), and the deal will become far worse for them if it has to be negotiated in my second term. Would be wise for them to act now, but love collecting BIG TARIFFS!”

Trump had accused Beijing of reneging on its commitments in trade talks and ordered new punitive duties, which took effect Friday, on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports, raising them to 25 percent from 10 percent.

He then cranked up the heat further, ordering a tariff hike on almost all remaining imports — $300 billion worth, according to US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer — from the world’s second-biggest economy.

Those tariffs would not take effect for months, after a period of public comment.

Trump also said Saturday that firms could easily avoid additional costs by producing goods in the United States.

“Such an easy way to avoid Tariffs? Make or produce your goods and products in the good old USA. It’s very simple!” he tweeted, echoing a similar message he sent Friday — and even retweeted.

Only a week earlier, the United States and China had seemed poised to complete a sweeping agreement.

Washington wants Beijing to tighten its intellectual property protections, cut its subsidies to state-owned firms and reduce the yawning trade deficit; China wants an end to tariffs as part of a “balanced” deal.

While supporters laud Trump as a tough negotiator, free-trade-minded Republicans have warned that the tariffs could do real damage to the economy, and many farmers — including Trump supporters — say the tariffs have hit their bottom line.

As the trade war spread, China imposed $110 billion in duties on farm exports and other US goods.

Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, from the farm state of Iowa, cautiously welcomed the new tariffs but urged negotiators to reach a quick solution “so we can avoid prolonged tariffs, which we know have an impact on the US economy.

Published in Business

The 18th “Chinese Bridge’’ competition, an annual Chinese proficiency contest for foreign college students, was on Saturday concluded in Kampala, capital city of Uganda.

Under the theme: “One World, One Family,’’ the final round of the competition held under the guidance of the Confucius Institute at Makerere University was featured by presenting speeches in Chinese, question and answer session on China as well as talent shows on Chinese culture.

Seven finalists from Makerere University, Kyambogo University and Ndejje University competed in the final round.

The winner will travel to China to participate in the global competition while the first runner up will get an opportunity to watch the competition in China.

Other competitors won prizes and also were given certificates.

This is the fourth time the competition would be held in Uganda.

There is increasing interest among Ugandans to learn the Chinese language, and several schools in Uganda have started teaching the Chinese language, said Yang Yehua, director of administration at the Chinese embassy.

Published in World
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