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Britain vows long-term support for overseas territories hit by Irma

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, September 13th, 2017

Despite sending reinforcements and ships to deliver help, France, Britain and the Netherlands have been criticized for not doing enough for the islands that they oversee.

After reviewing the aid operation underway at a British base in Barbados, British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson defended his government’s response to one of the most devastating storms ever to hit the Caribbean.

“We have every sympathy for the suffering of the people. I think most fair-minded people, you’ve not got a thousand troops in the area. I think more than 50 police officers, more police officers coming in tonight, huge quantities of supplies coming in,” said Johnson.

The UK government pledged long-term support on Tuesday to the British territories in the Caribbean hit by Hurricane Irma.

“We’ve seen deployments of UK armed services. They are contributing massively to people’s sense of confidence. It’s all about rebuilding that sense that these beautiful islands have a future, it will take time to rebuild, but the UK is going to be in the lead in that recovery plan,” said the secretary.

Prime Minister Theresa May is expected to announce additional funds for hurricane relief.

Britain on Monday delivered its first humanitarian aid and disaster relief to the Turks and Caicos islands, its overseas territory in the Caribbean.

British Royal Air Force said it has flown more than 20 sorties within the Caribbean since Friday, moving more than 700 passengers into and around the region and delivering more than 70 tons of freight to hurricane-stricken communities. — Reuters

 

 

 

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British PM, locals, condemn calls for beggars to be removed before UK royal wedding

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Friday, January 5th, 2018

“Yes, I don’t agree with the comments that the leader of the council has made. I think it is important that we, councils, work hard to ensure that they are proving accommodation for those people who are homeless, and where there are issues of people aggressively begging on the streets then it’s important that councils work with the police to deal with that aggressive bullying,” said Britain Prime Minister Theresa May.

This was the comment of British Prime Minister Theresa May on the statement of Simon Dudley, the leader of the royal borough of Windsor and Maidenhead Council, on Twitter where he said there had been an “epidemic of rough sleeping and vagrancy” in the town and said he wanted police “to focus on dealing with this before the #royalwedding in May.”

His remarks drew criticism from Prime Minister Theresa May and even from locals.

“I don’t know any aggressive beggars. I don’t know one person who is an aggressive beggar. There is a couple of people that ask for money, but they are homeless people at the end of the day,” said Stuart, a homeless man in Windsor.

“No one has said anything to us, mentioned. But of course, if you see people are lying on the floor, wherever they are, not just Windsor, all around London, it’s a big big problem, big issue. It has to be dealt with in a humane way,” said Rooney.

These were reactions on the idea that beggars need to be cleared by police from the streets of Windsor before the wedding of Prince Harry to girlfriend Meghan Markle because their “detritus” is presenting the picturesque English town in a poor light, the local council leader has said.

Windsor, the oldest inhabited castle in the world which has been a home of British monarchs for almost 1,000 years, attracts 1.3 million visitors every year, while many also visit the town to watch the regular “changing the guard”. — Reuters

 

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France’s Macron announces 12 non-binding commitments towards a decarbonized economy

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, December 14th, 2017

 

At the end of a climate summit organized by France two years after the Paris accord was signed, French President Emmanuel Macron announced 12 non-binding commitments, from a $300 million pledge to fight desertification to accelerating the transition towards a decarbonized economy.

“Today, we have begun to recapture the ground a bit in this battlefield, because concrete decisions were taken, because we were rightly pushed to take these commitments,” said Macron.

Public and private financial institutions pledged to channel more funds to spur the transition to a green economy and investors said they would pressure corporate giants to shift towards more ecologically friendly strategies. Macron said companies who were not “in the club” must be “named and shamed.

Among the commitments, more than 200 institutional investors with $26 trillion in assets under management said on Tuesday they would step up pressure on the world’s biggest corporate greenhouse gas emitters to combat climate change.

“This is not a choice between our planet and prosperity. We choose both. Actually, we can ensure that we are protecting the planet, by investing in the technology of the future,” said UK Prime Minister Theresa May.

“Let’s be aware and take concrete actions. We all have our own way of stopping climate change, but only if we unite our actions, there will be a better place for all, for the polar bears and for us. Let’s make the planet great again. Thank you,” said Eva, an American girl living in Paris.

Meanwhile, the World Bank announced that it would no longer finance upstream oil and gas projects after 2019, apart from certain gas projects in the poorest countries in exceptional circumstances, drawing praise from environmental groups.

“To ensure that we are aligned with our support to their countries to meet their Paris goals, today we are announcing that the World Bank group will no longer finance upstream oil and gas after 2019,” said World Bank President Jim Yong Kim.

However, the summit leaves no headline promise that will likely reassure poor nations on the sharp end of climate change that they will be better able to cope. — Reuters

 

 

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USAID and Colombian firefighters join rescue efforts in quake-stricken Mexico

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Friday, September 22nd, 2017

Members of a Colombian crew loading a plane with equipment and aid for Mexico (from Reuters video)

Rescue workers working against the odds in Mexico City on Thursday received reinforcements from USAID amidst a rising death toll and dwindling hope of finding people alive more than 48 hours after a deadly quake.

Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto reported that there could still be people alive in 10 collapsed buildings in Mexico City.

Concentrating efforts on these areas, 67 U.S. search and rescue experts and five dogs will work alongside local rescue crews.

Colombia is also sending 31 individuals and tons of technical equipment that will be dispersed in quake-stricken areas in Mexico City, Puebla and Morelos.

“For all the women firefighters from Bogota and in the name of the unity, this group is ready to move forward and to do good work. We’ve been training for a long time. It’s been almost ten years that we’ve been getting ready for these kinds of emergencies,” said Cabo Yadira Piamonte, a Colombian firefighter.

This was Mexico’s deadliest earthquake in 32 years, with the death toll currently standing at 233. Parts of Mexico City, home to some 20 million people, are built on an ancient lake bed that trembles easily in a quake. — Reuters

 

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