Tag Archives: crisis

Migrant crisis hangs more than Costa Rican president’s pay a visit to to Cuba

HAVANA Costa Rican President Luis Guillermo Solis arrived in Cuba on Sunday with plans to boost trade overshadowed by what to do with nearly 5,000 Cuban migrants stranded in his country.

The Cubans started arriving a month ago on their harmful 7,000-km (4,400-mile) overland trek from Ecuador to the Mexican-U.S. border, exactly where Cubans are given legal passage into the United States.

In brief comments to reporters on his arrival, Solis, holding a small Cuban flag, stated his trip was meant to complete Costa Rica’s normalization with Cuba, extend his country’s outreach to the Caribbean and market trade.

When a reporter asked about the migrants, Solis responded, “That will be one of the subjects on the agenda.”

The pay a visit to was planned well just before the crisis. Costa Rica re-established relations with Cuba in 2009, the final nation in Latin America to do so.

When the United States reached detente with Cuba a year ago, it led to a spike in Cuban emigration, partly due to fears the Americans would finish the special therapy that grants them residence with relative ease.

The situation reached crisis proportions when Costa Rica broke up a gang of human smugglers, leaving the Cubans in the lurch.

Costa Rica closed its border following arresting the smugglers, then granted the Cubans short-term visas to pass by means of.

But Nicaragua, a nation further to the north, refused to stick to suit, leaving Costa Rica with an ever increasing quantity of migrants.

Practically five,000 are stuck in shelters on the border and an estimated 1,300 to 1,500 are held up in Panama, one nation to the south, attempting to move into Costa Rica.

The crisis, now termed a humanitarian one by Solis, is positive to prime the agenda when he meets with President Raul Castro on Tuesday.

Cuba has repeatedly blamed the United States’ Cold War-era immigration policy for enticing its citizens to threat their lives and fostering human smuggling.

Solis has promised not to deport the Cubans and to continue hunting for a way to get them to the United States.

Some 43,159 Cubans entered the United States without visas in fiscal year 2015, up 78 percent from 2014 and up 550 percent from 2011, according to a Pew Analysis Center report primarily based on U.S. government data.

Numerous commence by flying to Ecuador, which prides itself on open borders. But Ecuador imposed a visa requirement on Cubans this month in hopes of slowing the flow.

(Reporting by Marc Frank Editing by Daniel Trotta and Jonathan Oatis)

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Thai migrant crisis meeting ends with no any remedy on offer

BANGKOK Thailand named on Friday for concerted action to tackle “irregular” migration in the Indian Ocean, but no substantial options emerged from a regional meeting aimed at stopping this year’s “boat individuals” tragedies in which hundreds drowned.

Representatives from Southeast Asian nations met in Bangkok to hash out a framework to deal with tens of thousands of migrants, most from Myanmar and Bangladesh, who make perilous voyages across the Bay of Bengal and Andaman Sea each year.

The meeting ended with a strategy place forward by Thailand which 5 directly affected nations, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Myanmar and Bangladesh, would contemplate.

“There is still no clarity. We have discussed but not agreed,” Apichart Chinwanno, permanent secretary at the Thai Foreign Ministry, mentioned.

The document being regarded, as European countries struggle to cope with refugees fleeing war in Syria and Iraq, focused on protection of migrants, prevention of irregular migration and prosecution of human smuggling and trafficking networks, he said, but gave handful of information.

“They focused on an data campaign, that’s all. Not about assisting people at sea and not about humanitarian help,” a U.N. official, who declined to be named, told Reuters.

Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai stated the region needed “an explicit and efficient mechanism to handle and control the negative impacts of irregular migration”.

The conference was the second round of talks that had been launched in May possibly amid a migration crisis prompted by a human trafficking crackdown in Thailand.

The crackdown brought on traffickers to abandon four,000 migrants from Myanmar and Bangladesh at sea and was marked by a chaotic spectacle of “maritime ping-pong” as the Thai, Malaysian and Indonesian navies repeatedly pushed desperate migrants in boats away from their waters.

October and November mark the begin of the four-month “sailing season”, the busiest time for smuggling and trafficking ships plying the Bay of Bengal.

Even though some migrants are Bangladeshis escaping poverty at property, several are members of Myanmar’s 1.1 million Rohingya Muslim community who live in apartheid-like circumstances in the country’s Rakhine state.

Myanmar does not think about the Rohingya citizens, rendering them effectively stateless, while denying it discriminates against them or that they are fleeing persecution.

The foreign minister had mentioned the situation of Rohingya citizenship would not be discussed on Friday.

(Editing by Nick Macfie)

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Greek c.bank chief says need political consensus to end debt crisis

ATHENS Nov 29 Greece’s central bank chief referred to as on the country’s party leaders on Sunday to sustain their political consensus to support pull Athens itself out of its monetary crisis when and for all.

His comments came a day soon after Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras failed to safe the backing of Greek opposition parties on tough pension reforms the country has promised to implement by December beneath its latest international bailout.

The Greek individuals are weary after six years of punishing austerity, and legislating in painful pension reforms will be the next large test of Tsipras’s coalition government, which saw its majority shrink to just three seats this month.

“There has been a higher degree of consensus when the (bailout) deal was voted in by a huge parliamentary majority final July,” Greek central bank governor Yannis Stournaras told Mega Television in a statement.

“It (the consensus) ought to be safeguarded to secure political stability, help a definite exit from the crisis and pave the way towards growth,” he stated.

Greece and its international lenders agreed this week on a new set of reforms the country should approve in December to qualify for an additional 1 billion euros in help.

Pension reforms are not part of this list but remain a key concern in order to complete the first evaluation of progress beneath the bailout programme and open the way for negotiations on debt relief. (Reporting by Angeliki Koutantou Editing by Hugh Lawson)

Latvia urges Greece to tighten border to ease refugee crisis

RIGA The president of Latvia has urged Greece to demonstrate a “changed attitude” on border safety to stem a flow of migrants, but sees no want to re-erect Europe’s internal frontiers in response to the refugee crisis or Paris attacks.

President Raimonds Vejonis told Reuters he also backed European help to help Turkey deal with more than 2 million refugees from Syria, even though expressing concern about Russia’s growing involvement in Syria’s civil war.

Hundreds of thousands of migrants fleeing conflict have poured into Europe from the Middle East and Africa this year, straining external borders along Europe’s southern flank.

“This is the cause why we genuinely require a changed attitude of Greece and other people on border safety. They want stronger control and checks of documents on their border since they are the initial country that asylum seekers are reaching,” Vejonis said.

Amid deep divisions more than Europe’s worst refugee crisis considering that Planet War Two, officials from Baltic states have voiced related issues about Italy, whose islands have also faced an influx.

Hundreds of Latvians protested in August against a government decision to accept 250 asylum seekers more than two years as portion of a European Union plan to deal with the migrants.

Vejonis dismissed calls for the Schengen agreement, a free of charge border zone of 26 nations which includes 22 from the EU, to be frozen in light of the refugee crisis or the Nov. 13 attacks in Paris, carried out partly by militants who traveled freely from Belgium.

“I don’t believe that we want to close borders due to the fact in reality these individuals who are involved in terrorism are already mostly European citizens. It indicates our security institutions need to perform more very carefully and intensively to recognize such people and detain them if essential,” he mentioned.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has stated the open border system would only endure if EU member states accepted a permanent, mandatory quota method for sharing out refugees.

But Vejonis mentioned the EU have to initial shore up its external frontiers, specially in the south, establish successful techniques of returning non-war refugees and combat human trafficking.

“If the EU does not solve all these crucial troubles, it will be very difficult in the future to discuss new choices on reallocation and resettlement. It will be a really hot subject for us and if there are no options on these 3 points, it will be extremely tough to continue.”


The EU is due to hold a summit with Turkey on Sunday to talk about help for the two.three million Syrian refugees there, but differences remain more than what Ankara must offer in return.

“From a European point of view we need to have to organize very good border manage, but at the exact same time uncover the mechanisms for helping Turkey handle the two million or more people who have already arrived from Syria,” Vejonis stated.

Latvia is also examining what it can contribute to an anti-Islamic State coalition proposed by France, soon after sending a senior officer to the U.S. command center for the Middle East.

But Vejonis, a former defense minister who is also commander of Latvia’s forces, mentioned Riga’s priority would be to preserve its personal security amid what Western officials have described as Cold War levels of military activity in the Baltic.

“The initial task of our armed forces is to develop new capabilities here since relations militarily among the Baltic states, and between NATO and Russia, are nonetheless quite difficult and we really feel day-to-day the effect of Russian military activities along our borders on land, sea and air.”

With ties in between Moscow and Western capitals thawing following the Paris attacks, some of Russia’s neighbors fear Europe’s commitment to sanctions against Moscow over the Ukraine crisis may be waning as they co-operate in fighting Islamic State.

Vejonis said the EU’s priority in dealing with Russia need to stay complete implementation of a deal to finish fighting in east Ukraine, beneath the terms of the so-known as Minsk agreement, which set a deadline of the end of 2015 for Ukraine to regain full handle over its eastern border.

“No implementation, no good relations with Russia. My opinion is we need to continue negotiations to see how we can preserve sanctions against Russia, but I hope that all parties will actually implement the Minsk Agreement,” he said.

(Added reporting by Gederts Gelzis Editing by Alison Williams)

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Agen Sabung Ayam – Damning report exposes Europe’s escalating housing crisis

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London was located to have the worst house cost to income ratio of eight European capitals. Photograph: Dominic Lipinski/PA

Europe is experiencing a “silent emergency” for housing, with the quantity of young adults living with their parents now at an all-time high, according to a study.

Research carried out by Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit NGO committed to promoting cost-effective housing about the globe, discovered that the 2008 housing crisis triggered by the international monetary crash is by no means over in Europe.

Specialists warn that continuing troubles, such as exploding charges and the numbers of young adults forced to reside at residence, are probably to have a significant economic and social influence across the region.

According to the report, released on Thursday:

  • Much more than 10% of Europeans shoulder housing costs – including rent and heating – in excess of half their household’s income. In central and eastern Europe, households devote between 30 and 50% of their earnings solely on winter heating, and increasing household expenses are contributing to poverty levels and raising the likelihood of people losing their houses.
  • The numbers of young adults aged in between 18 and 34 who are living with their parents is now at an all-time high. The scenario is worst in Slovenia, where 74% still live at house, in Italy it is 66% and in Portugal it’s 55%.
  • Construction of new properties has plummeted by among 70 and 90% in current years, and the amount of social housing does not even cover ten% of people’s requirements.

The study’s authors also tension the rise of a ‘housing poverty’ reality, which has been designed by the growing gap among poverty and affluence in economically vibrant urban centres, and that forces skilled and extremely educated pros to move outside of cities since they they have been priced out of them.

Housing price overburden price

It says European policymakers urgently want to find approaches to create and supply housing for everyone. It recommends revolutionary funding and lending choices, much better use of contemporary creating technologies that would help decrease power costs and make buildings far more resilient, as effectively as new housing policies that would assist encourage social integration.

“Europe wants to look at far better approaches of creating and offering housing that aids people, regardless of class or income, to have a decent location to reside,” according to Greg Foster, the Europe, Middle East and Africa manager of Habitat for Humanity.

“And the trends and threats to Europe’s middle- and low-revenue neighbourhoods require to be analysed and solutions created, to guarantee the region’s cities remain liveable for everyone”.

The NGO is calling on European policymakers to prioritise the provision of reasonably priced, sustainable and liveable housing for all.

The report’s publication is timed to coincide with the European Housing Forum, which is meeting for the third time in the Berlin this week. It will bring collectively housing specialists from around the planet who will go over regardless of whether at a time of growing economic pressures, which has made housing in certain, really costly for many, Europeans can still afford to live in Europe.

The conference is anticipated to concentrate on the impact the refugee crisis will also have on Europe’s housing challenges. In Germany alone residences will have to be discovered for one particular million refugees in the next few months, at a time when social housing building – even with no the newcomers – is at a dismally inadequate level almost everywhere. The refugees’ integration into the housing market place will be one particular of the most crucial challenges of coming years, the authors insist.

Housing in Croydon

Habitat for Humanity desires policymakers to prioritise affordable, sustainable and liveable housing for all. Photograph: Martin Godwin for the Guardian

The authors say households are suffering from a housing expense overburden all through Europe, with expenses such as rent, heating and upkeep eating up to 40% of disposable household earnings in low-revenue groups – that is those whose revenue is under 60% of the typical national earnings – and showing no signs of letting up. The impact is felt each in cities and rural regions and increases the poorer a family members is.

While access to inexpensive housing is becoming increasingly challenging across the continent – it is noticed to be worst in Paris, Helsinki, Amsterdam, Luxembourg, London and Brussels. Comparing the getting energy in eight European capitals, the study shows that London fares worst when it comes to price tag to earnings ratios.

Across the EU, 17% of folks are living in overcrowded situations. The highest price is in Romania, where it is 52%. The authors said the high quantity of young adults living at residence had led to considerably of the overcrowding.

At the exact same time, there are plenty of slow economic regions in Europe that have enormous vacancy prices – largely driven by the financial meltdown, such as Portugal, Greece, Spain and several parts of eastern Europe.

The report also highlights the issue of spatial segregation. In components of Europe, ethnic enclaves and ghettos have formed to home the Roma and Sinti communities – mainly southern and eastern Europe – and migrant communities. They say that of any group, Roma and Sinti face by far the worst all round housing conditions in Europe.

Significantly of the blame for Europe’s housing problems can be place down to the truth that housing across Europe, such as the former communist nations, has increasingly been noticed as consumer goods.

Houses in Aveiro, Portugal

Houses in Aveiro, Portugal. The nation has the third highest proportion of 18-34-year-olds still living with their parents in Europe. Photograph: Alamy

“Housing becomes significantly less reasonably priced as marketplace demand becomes heavily influenced by investment motives, which is illustrated by the evolution of property costs compared with GDP development in most European nations,” according to report authors József Hegedüs and Vera Horvath.

They highlight the unsafe extremes in the UK housing market that have had a hugely distorting effect on housing affordability, concluding: “Individual households have suffered significantly as a result of this imbalance,” not least since “their capacity to adapt to intense market changes is limited”.

The influence of housing privatisation across Europe – like the selling off of a lot social housing – has generated a huge quantity of what the report recognises as “poor owners” – men and women who own their properties, but can not afford to appear right after their properties. The report warns that the deteriorating state of much privatised housing “will turn into a heavy public liability” for considerably of Europe in the coming years.

Although acknowledging that private ownership had its good elements, such as keeping housing costs low and steady and giving people a sense of empowerment, Wolfgang Amman, one particular of the report’s authors, said it had been a mistake to feel that responsibility for housing provision for the poor could be renounced. “Leaving unwilling owners in collapsing structures is no political selection … housing for these in need to have will always be a public service obligation,” he mentioned.

Drawing on lessons learnt from the Balkan crisis of the early 90s, the report also stresses the critical role housing plays in enabling folks to keep in regions that have been ravaged by war and hence in helping prevent mass migration.

It recommends providing priority to rebuilding housing in war-torn regions “as an powerful way to avoid individuals from migrating”. It stated housing is “a shock absorber in occasions of peace, but even more so in instances of post-conflict”.


Rent, heating and maintenance accounts for up to 40% of disposable household finance for low-revenue groups. Photograph: Graham Turner for the Guardian

In suggestions that will resonate in several parts of Europe, the report said that the huge decreases in building was also obtaining a enormous impact on Europe’s housing pressures.

In searching for ways to enhance housing affordability, the

Agen Sabung Ayam – Mental wellness wants urgent extra funding to avert crisis, say trust chief executives | Claire Murdoch

Agen Sabung Ayam

The ideal way to tackle the growing NHS deficit is to deliver a lot more solutions in the community. Photograph: Alamy

The NHS is facing the greatest economic challenge in its history. Figures for the initial 3 months of the economic year reveal an accumulated NHS deficit of nearly £1bn. The independent health thinktank, the Nuffield Trust, says deficits have now turn into the “new normal” in the NHS, with four out of five trusts now in the red. The figures for the second quarter of the financial year are feared to be substantially worse.

Related: NHS facing £2bn deficit and ‘worst economic crisis in a generation’

The position for acute hospital trusts is especially challenging, with 98% of the total NHS accumulated deficit nonetheless in the acute sector. Despite an exceptional record of economic management, deficits are growing in London’s mental health trusts due to rising demand, an ageing population but fewer sources.

In 2014-15, London’s wellness commissioners spent 12% of overall health expenditure on mental health. In 2015-16 that fell to 11% – a transfer of funding from mental overall health to acute trusts. Nationally, mental ill-wellness at the moment accounts for far more than 25% of the total illness burden, but mental wellness solutions obtain less than half that proportion of NHS funding and the amount that goes to mental well being is falling.

The Cavendish Square Group, set up this year by the ten NHS mental wellness trusts in London to speak up for mental healthcare in the capital, is seriously concerned that health commissioners in London will once again raid mental health budgets to support plug the ever-expanding deficits in the acute hospital sector. It can’t be appropriate that we run the NHS on the basis of robbing Peter to pay Paul and it merely cannot go on. We have to improve spending on mental wellness solutions and we should do it now.

The very best way to tackle the expanding NHS deficit is to provide more services in the community. This is particularly true for patients who have each mental and physical overall health difficulties. The expense of caring for folks with combined mental well being and physical overall health difficulties is a lot more than £13bn a year. Increased investment in community and main mental health solutions could dramatically lessen this cost and reduce the NHS deficit.

The imminent report by NHS England’s mental well being taskforce will set out a new 5-year national strategy for mental wellness. Far more than 20,000 individuals such as service users, families, carers and clinicians, have fed their views to the taskforce. It is important that this strategy is correctly funded, with investment directed to frontline mental health services, if we are to realise the parity of esteem all the primary political parties committed themselves to just before the election.

The case for protecting and escalating mental well being budgets is compelling. We owe it to people with mental well being difficulties to guarantee services are as very good as these for folks with physical ill health. And investing effectively in mental health services is one of the most efficient techniques of rising productivity, cutting costs and decreasing the wider NHS deficit.

Correct investment in mental overall health services can have dramatic effects. North East London NHS foundation trust is piloting a new service for individuals with key mental overall health issues that involves constant and concerted engagement with the patient’s wider family or network, combined with considerably reduce prices of medication. It is a model pioneered in Finland, exactly where all healthcare employees acquire education in household therapy and connected psychological expertise. It is increasingly getting employed in Scandinavia, Germany and numerous states in America. The benefits are striking. A lot more than 70% of sufferers with a initial episode of psychosis treated via the open dialogue strategy return to perform or study and in-patient hospitalisation rates are considerably lower.

The ten London mental overall health trusts have taken huge strides to reduce the number of mental well being beds and move solutions into the community. So we can assist the acute sector to discover from our experiences.

Associated: Mental well being price range cuts putting solutions below ‘huge pressure’

We need to have higher stability by way of longer mental health service contracts and budgeting. The cost of contracting solutions for even 12 months is enormous, for commissioners and trusts. The annual budgeting cycle precludes constant, London-wide agreement on longer term high quality improvements, in favour of extended wrangling more than contract values. It is costly, inefficient and destabilising. 5-year service contracts would encourage more collaborative working between clinical commissioning groups and providers and lead to extended-term stability.

We require a healthcare payment technique that incentivises all overall health providers – in principal, acute and mental wellness care – to get people much better quicker and preserve individuals healthier for longer. Funding arrangements in the physical health sector incentivise providers to treat far more individuals, rather than to maintain them properly so they do not require therapy. By contrast, mental wellness providers obtain block payments and are basically asked to do what they can inside their allocated price range.

We also need to have a single, unified regulatory method that ends the conflict in between the Care Quality Commission’s demand that trusts want to employ a lot more employees and Monitor’s insistence that trusts need to spend less cash on staffing. We can not do each.

With concerted action, England could have mental well being solutions that avert physical ill-overall health and hold people at property, but we want to move quickly. Time is running out.

Claire Murdoch is chair of the Cavendish Square Group and chief executive of the Central and North West London NHS foundation trust


Paul Jenkins, vice-chair, the Cavendish Square Group and chief executive of the Tavistock &amp Portman NHS foundation trust

Maria Kane, chief executive of Barnet, Enfield &amp Haringey mental health NHS trust

Wendy Wallace, chief executive of Camden &amp Islington NHS foundation trust

John Brouder, chief executive of NELFT NHS foundation trust

Stephen Firn, chief executive, Oxleas NHS foundation trust

Dr Matthew Patrick, chief executive, South London &amp Maudsley NHS foundation trust

David Bradley, chief executive, South West London &amp St George’s mental overall health NHS trust

Paul Stefanoski, interim chief executive, West London mental well being NHS trust

Dr Robert Dolan, chief executive of East London NHS foundation trust