Mare Liberum

Blog Multilíngue de Relações Transatlânticas

segunda-feira, 19 de março de 2007

Ministro dos Negocios Estrangeiros cubano visita países europeus

in Tribuna de la Habana (19/03/07)

Fructíferos los resultados de la visita a países europeos

La Habana, marzo 19.- Felipe Pérez Roque, ministro de Relaciones Exteriores de Cuba, calificó de fructífera la gira que realizó por varios países europeos, donde constató un amplio movimiento de solidaridad con el pueblo cubano y su Revolución.

A la llegada a esta capital, el Canciller cubano declaró a Radio Rebelde que los objetivos del periplo fueron cumplidos, entre ellos la reactivación del trabajo del Movimiento de los Países No Alineados, que
preside Cuba, en la UNESCO.

Pérez Roque destacó la actuación de Cuba en el Consejo de Derechos Humanos, donde denunció las maniobras de algunos aliados de Estados Unidos que impulsan allí una campaña para continuar usando ese ente en función de sus intereses.

También explicó que la actual administración de Estados Unidos pretende así proseguir su política de presionar, hostigar y castigar a los países que se rebelan contra sus dictados y el orden internacional
que ellos hoy se proponen instaurar.

El ministro cubano informó que durante este periplo sostuvieron importantes encuentros con otros cancilleres y jefes de delegaciones, a la vez que fue muy útil el intercambio de puntos de vista, no siempre
coincidentes, con las autoridades de Italia, Portugal y España.

Quid Iuris?

Bush Warns U.S. Security Will Suffer if Troops Withdraw From Iraq

in Washington Post (19/03/07)

Asserting that the war in Iraq "can be won" with U.S. resolve, President Bush appealed to the American people today for patience as he pursues a plan to tamp down violence in Baghdad, and he warned that national security would suffer a "devastating" blow if U.S. troops were to withdraw from Iraq next year as demanded by congressional Democrats.

In a brief televised speech to the nation on the eve of the fourth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Bush hailed what he said were signs of progress in a joint U.S.-Iraqi operation to secure the Iraqi capital from mounting insurgent and sectarian violence.
"Four years after this war began, the fight is difficult, but it can be won," Bush said toward the end of his five-minute speech. "It will be won if we have the courage and resolve to see it through."

He cautioned that the Baghdad security plan "needs more time to take effect," and he warned that there will be "good days" and "bad days" as it unfolds. But he said the Iraqi government was making "good progress" toward meeting political and economic benchmarks aimed at achieving national reconciliation, although he acknowledged that "there is a lot more work to be done."
Bush urged Congress to pass a "clean" emergency spending bill to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, giving U.S. forces the "flexibility" they need without attaching money for unrelated domestic projects and without including a timetable for withdrawal from Iraq. He made the comments after meeting with his national security team at the White House and conferring via satellite video hookups with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and with top U.S. military and civilian officials in Iraq.

"It can be tempting to look at the challenges in Iraq and conclude that our best option is to pack up and go home," Bush said. "While that may be satisfying in the short run, the consequences for American security would be devastating."

Democratic leaders in Congress nevertheless vowed to press ahead with proposals to gradually withdraw U.S. troops, saying the Bush administration has been consistently wrong about Iraq from the beginning.

Bush announced the start of the war in a televised address from the Oval Office at 10:15 p.m. on March 19, 2003, shortly after U.S. forces launched predawn airstrikes on March 20 Baghdad time aimed at then-president Saddam Hussein. U.S. ground forces, spearheaded by the Army's 3rd Infantry Division, began pouring across the border from neighboring Kuwait shortly after nightfall on March 20, 2003, as the invasion got underway, meeting scant initial resistance.

By April 7, U.S. troops had driven into Baghdad west of the Tigris River, seizing an area of palaces and government villas that now is known as the Green Zone, a heavily fortified section of the capital that harbors the U.S. Embassy and key installations of the Iraqi government. On April 9, 2003, Hussein's 24-year-old regime collapsed, and his statue was hauled down from a central plaza. He was captured eight months later near his hometown of Tikrit by U.S. forces and was hanged by the Iraqi government on Dec. 30, 2006.

In a television interview on the eve of the fourth anniversary of the U.S. invasion, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said it was "worth the sacrifice" to have toppled Hussein. But she acknowledged early U.S. mistakes in the war, such as not sending in enough troops at the beginning, and she asked Americans "to be patient" as the administration presses ahead with a new plan to secure the war-ravaged Iraqi capital.

Since the invasion, a persistent insurgency -- unanticipated by the Bush administration -- and rampant sectarian violence have dispelled the initial euphoria that greeted the ouster of Hussein. Some 3,200 U.S. troops have died in Iraq and more than 24,000 have been wounded. Iraqis have fared far worse, with civilians bearing the brunt of the violence. According to Iraq Body Count, an antiwar Web site that monitors civilian deaths in Iraq, as many as 65,160 Iraqis have been killed in the four-year-old conflict.

As the White House marked the anniversary with no end to U.S. involvement in sight, congressional Democrats were promoting a plan to bring U.S. combat troops home by the end of August 2008. The plan was included in a $124 billion emergency spending bill that is being considered by the House of Representatives this week. The bill includes $95.5 billion to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The White House has threatened to veto any bill that includes such a withdrawal plan, and presidential spokesman Tony Snow warned today that the House Democrats' plan would lead to American defeat.

"That is not a fund-the-troops bill but a withdraw-the-troops bill," Snow said this morning before Bush's speech. "We think that is an approach that is conducive to defeat. It is a recipe for failure, not for victory."

The plan "would provide victory for the enemy and not the much-needed and deserved victory for the people of Iraq," Snow said. "Furthermore, it would forfeit the sacrifice that our troops have made in the field."

Unlike Rice, Bush acknowledged no strategic errors in Iraq in today's speech from the Roosevelt Room of the White House. Instead, he defended his decision to remove Hussein from power, saying the invading forces did so "to eliminate the threat his regime posed to the Middle East and to the world." He also expressed satisfaction that "the world is rid of Saddam Hussein" and said that Iraq's "democratic leaders are now working to build a free society that upholds the rule of law, that respects the rights of its people, that provides them security and is an ally in the war on terror."

Now, he said, "our most important mission is helping the Iraqis secure their capital" to permit further economic and political progress.

Bush said that in his conversations this morning, Maliki and the top U.S. commander in Iraq, Army Gen. David H. Petraeus, "emphasized that the Baghdad security plan is still in its early stages and success will take months, not days or weeks." Yet, he said, there are "hopeful signs," including the deployment of three additional Iraqi army brigades to Baghdad, the lifting of political restrictions on troop movements in areas such as the capital's Shiite Muslim stronghold of Sadr City and the establishment of U.S.-Iraqi "joint security stations" in Baghdad.

Citing "aggressive operations" against both Shiite and Sunni Muslim extremists, as well as al-Qaeda terrorists, Bush said large weapons caches and two major car bomb factories have been uncovered.

But with fewer than half the planned U.S. reinforcements having arrived so far, Bush said, "The new strategy will need more time to take effect. And there will be good days and there will be bad days ahead as the security plan unfolds."

He said lawmakers considering the emergency war appropriations bill "have a responsibility to pass a clean bill that does not use funding for our troops as leverage to get special interest spending for their districts. And they have a responsibility to get this bill to my desk without strings and without delay."

Listing the "devastating" consequences that he said would flow from a pullout of U.S. forces, Bush warned that "a contagion of violence could spill out across the entire country," eventually engulfing the rest of the Middle East.

"The terrorists could emerge from the chaos with a safe haven in Iraq to replace the one they had in Afghanistan, which they used to plan the attacks of September 11, 2001," Bush added. "For the safety of the American people, we cannot allow this to happen."

In response, Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) issued a statement blasting the administration for "four years of failure in Iraq" and vowing to force a change in course.

"By diverting attention from al-Qaeda and stretching our troops to the breaking point, the Iraq war has made America less safe, not more," Reid said. "After four years of failure in Iraq, the president's only answer is to do more of the same. With the blessing of Senate Republicans, he's committing more U.S. troops to an open-ended civil war. It's a flawed policy, proven wrong by events on the ground. To succeed in Iraq, we must have a new direction."

Quoting Petraeus as saying the war can only be won politically, Reid said the United States must force Iraq's political factions to resolve their differences. But an attempt by Senate Democrats to exert such pressure by setting a deadline for U.S. withdrawal a year from now was "blocked by Senate Republicans" last week, he said. However, "we will not stop until they listen to the American people and change course in Iraq," he said.

Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) said in a separate statement, "Patience is not a strategy. As we enter the fifth year of war in Iraq with American soldiers policing a civil war between Iraqis, it is clear we need a new policy, and change must come from Congress."

He added, "Nearly every prediction this administration has made about Iraq has been wrong." It has been wrong about the cost of the war, its duration and the strain it would place on the U.S. military, he said.

"Unless this administration is willing to accept more and more years of war in Iraq with no end in sight, we need a regional, diplomatic strategy for peace and a deadline for redeployment to pressure Iraqis to solve their differences," Kerry said.

Rep. John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), the House minority leader, warned that as lawmakers debate the Democrats' plan, "we cannot be blind to the fact that al-Qaeda and its supporters will be paying attention." He called on Congress to recommit to defeating radical Islamic terrorism and to "provide a clean troop funding bill without extraneous or unnecessary spending."

Saying that "Americans do not support choking off resources for our troops," Boehner pledged that Republicans would "continue our fight this week on the House floor to strip the Democrats' bill of the dangers it presents to American troops and to our national security."

Quid Iuris?

sexta-feira, 23 de fevereiro de 2007

Crise na Somália

In Le Figaro (

"La violence s’est de nouveau emparée de la capitale somalienne un mois et demi après la chute des tribunaux islamiques.

Des combats entre des assaillants non identifiés et des soldats éthiopiens ont éclaté à Mogadiscio après une attaque menée par ces hommes armés contre une base de l'armée éthiopienne située dans le bâtiment de l'ancien ministère de la Défense.

Des obus de mortier ont été tirés par les assaillants dans les rues de la capitale avant que les sodats gouvernementaux ne ripostent avec des tirs de char et d'artillerie lourde. Des fusillades ont ensuite suivi. Les affrontements ont duré plus d'une vingtaine de minutes. On ignore, pour le moment, le bilan humain définitif de ces combats. Mais au moins un civil a perdu la vie.

Depuis la chute début janvier des tribunaux islamiques, qui contrôlaient une grande partie du centre et du sud de la Somalie, une cinquantaine de personnes, en majorité des civils, ont été tuées à Mogadiscio dans des attaques menées par les rebelles.

Déploiement de troupes ougandaises en Somalie

Ces opérations de harcèlement visent en particulier les forces gouvernementales somaliennes, les autorités politiques et l'armée éthiopienne, qui soutiennent les institutions somaliennes de transition. Selon le gouvernement somalien, ces attaques sont le fait de 3 000 miliciens islamistes, qui avaient menacé de mener une guérilla contre les autorités.

Vendredi, une délégation ougandaise conduite par le ministre ougandais de la Défense Crispus Kiyonga et le chef des forces armées ougandaises, Aronda Nyakairima, est arrivée à Mogadiscio. Celle-ci s'est entretenue avec des représentants du gouvernement somalien sur les modalités du déploiement des bataillons ougandais de la force de paix de l'Union africaine (UA) prévue en Somalie."

Quid Iuris?

segunda-feira, 19 de fevereiro de 2007

José Lello eleito presidente da Assembleia Parlamentar da NATO

in Publico

José Lello, secretário nacional do PS para as relações Internacionais, foi hoje
eleito por unanimidade, em Bruxelas, presidente da Assembleia Parlamentar da NATO, organização onde já assumia uma das vice-presidências.

Em declarações à agência Lusa a partir de Bruxelas, José Lello disse estar "muito feliz" com a nomeação, sobretudo "por se tratar da primeira vez que um português ocupa este cargo". "É um grande desafio e um lugar de responsabilidade. O meu contributo será para esbater as eventuais diferenças entre os aliados e fazer uma síntese que contribua para o bom entendimento", referiu.

José Lello substituirá o holandês Bert Konders, que vai assumir o lugar de ministro da Cooperação e Desenvolvimento do Governo de Haia.

Em 60 anos de história da organização, que integra delegações parlamentares de 27 países membros da Aliança Atlântica, será a primeira vez que um deputado português chega à presidência.

Citando o ensaísta Eduardo Lourenço, o também deputado socialista observou que "os portugueses parecem ter um certo talento para facilitar o relacionamento entre os povos". Entre os desafios que irá deparar-se, José Lello apontou "a situação no Afeganistão, onde os aliados estão muito envolvidos e as questões da segurança e da luta contra o terrorismo, fenómenos actualmente bastante complexos".

O responsável revelou que amanhã irá ter a sua primeira reunião com o secretário-geral da NATO, Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, e uma outra com membros do conselho e embaixadores dos vários países aliados.

Na Assembleia Parlamentar da NATO estão também representadas delegações de observadores (caso da Rússia e de países da Bacia do Mediterrâneo) e uma delegação do Parlamento Europeu, da qual fazem parte, entre outros, os eurodeputados socialistas portugueses Ana Gomes e Paulo Casaca.

Além de vários cargos na direcção do PS, José Lello desempenhou durante os governos de António Guterres as funções de secretário de Estado das Comunidades, entre 1995 e 1999, e de ministro da Juventude e do Desporto, entre 1999 e 2002.

Quid Iuris?

sexta-feira, 16 de fevereiro de 2007

Vamos Caçar Gambozinos

Primeiro Post deste Blog, que foi criado por um computador da biblioteca da Universidade dos Açores.
Um grande abraço.