Albania's newly sworn-in president urges political unity
TIRANA, Albania (AP) — Albania’s new president was sworn in on Sunday and urged the nation's political parties to cooperate on the country's future and consolidate the rule of law. President Bajram Begaj, 55, who won after getting 78 votes in the 140-seat Parliament, formally took office at a ceremony in parliament. “I won't stand neutral to anyone putting personal interests above those of our nation,” said Begaj, a former army chief-of-staff general.At a later ceremony at the presidential office the Constitutional Court head handed over the country's Constitution to Begaj.
nine months after the latest parliamentary election, Iraq faces a dangerous escalation. The power struggle in the country is out of control. © Photo: dpa/ Anmar Khalil to stay. After the storm, work in parliament was discontinued until further notice.
for the second time within a few days, demonstrators have occupied the Iraqi parliament in Baghdad - a announcement of the politician and preacher Muktada al Sadr on his rival Nuri al Maliki and Iran. After the first line -up last Wednesday, followers from Sadr had withdrawn after a short time, but when they returned to the building on Saturday, they announced that they wanted to stay there for the time being.
Australian leader wants legislated carbon reduction target
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia’s Parliament sat on Tuesday for the first time since May elections with the new prime minister determined to have a greenhouse gas reduction target enshrined in law. Legislation that would force Australia to reduce its emissions by 43% below 2005 levels by the end of the decade will be introduced Wednesday into the House of Representatives. While Prime Minster Anthony Albanese’s center-left Labor Party holds a narrow majority in the House, it will need the support of senators from outside government ranks to get the bill through the upper chamber.
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Parliamentary work has been set until further notice . Maliki reacted with a demonstration of his own willingness to fight: he was photographed with a assault rifle. Nine months after the latest parliamentary election, Iraq faces a dangerous escalation.
Sadr and Maliki compete for the leadership role among the Iraqi Shiites, the largest population group in the country. Sadr won the elections in October, but failed in the formation of government and withdrew his MPs from Parliament in June. Maliki, who was prime minister from 2006 to 2014, wants to form a pro-Iranian government, but Sadr wants to prevent this.
Iraq: demonstrators enter the Parliament
© AMMAR Karim / AFP Iraq, Manfectation, Parliament L has a political crisis in Iraq goes up a notch. Supporters of the influential Shiite leader Moqtada Sadr invested the Parliament on Wednesday by entering the ultra-secure green zone housing at Baghdad government and embassies, to denounce the candidacy for the post of Prime Minister presented by the opposing political camp.
After the new elections, nothing has improved
video: Demonstrators storm Iraqi parliament (AFP)
The power struggle in the Shiite camp blocks the solution of urgent problems such as rampant corruption, poor power supply and high unemployment. The grievances triggered nationwide protests in 2019 and led to the early new elections last year, but nothing has improved, on the contrary: the competition between Sadr and Maliki now conjures up the horror scenario of a new civil war.
Both politicians can offer thousands of fighters and ignore the official monopoly of violence by state security forces. According to internal statements that came to the public, Maliki is said to have predicted an inner-shy "war". Sadr accuses Maliki of wanting to murder him. This dispute is now tightening with the parliamentary occupations. The government of the executive Prime Minister Mustafa Al Kadhimi is powerless.
'New Cold War': Russia and West vie for influence in Africa
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Russian, French and American leaders are crisscrossing Africa to win support for their positions on the war in Ukraine, waging what some say is the most intense competition for influence on the continent since the Cold War. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and French President Emanuel Macron are each visiting several African countries this week. Samantha Power, head of the U.S. Agency for International Development, went to Kenya and Somalia last week. The U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Linda Thomas-Greenfield, will go to Ghana and Uganda next week.
The 47-year-old Sadr is one of the most dazzling actors in Iraqi politics. As the son of a prominent clergyman who resisted the dictator Saddam Hussein, he enjoys a high reputation with many Shiites. His militia, the Mahdi Army, fought against the Americans after the 2003 US invasion.
Sadr presents itself as a Iraqi nationalist who rejects Iran's interference in his country, but has traveled to Tehran several times in recent years. Although he announced his withdrawal from politics in 2014, Sadr is one of the most powerful politicians in the country: his Saairun alliance won the most parliamentary seats in the 2018 and 2021 elections.
How does Iran react?
Maliki is closer to Iran than his rival Sadr, but has not yet been able to prevail against him. Observers see this a sign of Iran's weakness, which has seen Iraq since the fall of Saddam Hussein as his back yard. For Tehran, Iraq is part of the Iranian sphere of influence from Afghanistan to the Mediterranean, says Iran expert Firas Elias.
But Iran has been losing influence since the murder of General Qassem Soleimani two years ago in Iraq, Elias wrote in an analysis for the Washington Institute for Middle East Policy. Sadr's victory in the elections last year was another defeat for Iran.
The time of the first parliamentary occupation of Baghdad on Wednesday shows how strongly Sadr feels: his followers stormed the plenum during a visit to Esmail Qaani in the Iraqi capital. As the successor to Soleimani, Qaani leads the foreign troop of the Iranian revolutionary guard and is the head of pro-Iranian politicians such as Maliki. He obviously does not want to cope with Sadr. Iran expert Elias reported on Twitter, citing Iranian sources that Qaani wanted to ask his protégé Maliki not to provoke his rivals.
From The Mummy to The Invisible Man, What's Up With Universal's Monsters? .
The Universal Monsters starred in some of the most beloved horror films of all time nearly a century ago but seem to struggle in the modern day.1931 saw Universal Studios release both Tod Browning's Dracula and James Whale's Frankenstein to immense financial success and critical acclaim. Both films ushered horror into a new era, serving as crucial stepping stones for the genre as it evolved in the new post-sound filmmaking world. Other studios rushed to try and capitalize on its success as well, with gothic horror becoming one of cinema's most popular subgenres throughout the '30s, but Universal had a unique position of power.