Sao Paulo metro strike to continue Monday despite court ruling

admin   •   June 10, 2014   •   2219

A soccer fan holds a Brazilian flag in front of two policemen outside Ana Rosa subway station during the fifth day of metro worker’s protest in Sao Paulo June 9, 2014.
CREDIT: REUTERS/KAI PFAFFENBACH

(Reuters) – Sao Paulo’s metro workers voted to stay off work for a fifth day on Monday even after a court declared the strike illegal, complicating preparations for the World Cup opening match.

Another vote on the strike was scheduled for Monday at 1 p.m. local time (1600 GMT), after a rally in downtown Sao Paulo in which they will be joined by homeless’ workers and other social movements.

“The (metro workers’) union sent an official request to President Dilma Rousseff asking her to help the category reopen talks with the (Sao Paulo) state government,” which controls the subway system, the union said in a note on Sunday.

A court on Sunday set a 500,000 reais penalty ($223,000) for each day they stay off work from Monday. It also declared the strike illegal, paving the way for state-owned Companhia do Metropolitano de Sao Paulo to lay off striking workers.

Metro workers’ demand a 12 percent pay rise, but Metro has offered 8.7 percent.

With major subway lines closed since Thursday, commuting in Brazil’s largest city has been chaotic.

The strike snagged several FIFA officials in over two hours of traffic as they arrived for a conference ahead of the World Cup last week, which kicks off with a Brazil v Croatia match in Sao Paulo on Thursday.

On Friday, police used tear gas to break up a demonstration blocking access to one metro station. [ID:nL1N0ON0UG]

Frustration with broken promises and the ballooning cost of new World Cup stadiums contributed to widespread protests that drew over a million Brazilians into the streets during a warm-up tournament last year. This year, the largest demonstrations so far have been from homeless groups and striking workers using the backdrop of the World Cup to press their causes.

($1 = 2.24 Brazilian reais)

(Reporting by Silvio Cascione and Camila Moreira; Editing by Bernard Orr)

Malacañang slams blogger’s tweet on Duterte belatedly receiving FIFA jersey

Maris Federez   •   November 3, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The office of the President on Sunday (November 3) slammed the move of what it called the “rambunctious political opposition”.

A Twitter account purportedly associated with an official of the Aquino administration uploaded a “spliced” video supposedly showing that President Rodrigo Duterte did not receive a football jersey during the signing of a memorandum of understanding between ASEAN and FIFA in Bangkok on November 2.

The MOU signing was part of the Southeast Asian region’s plan to jointly host the FIFA World Cup in 2034.

In a statement released by Malacañang, Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said, “the official photo of the President, easily accessible in the Facebook account of the Presidential Communications, immediately puts a lie to this sinister false news.”

He added that it has become predictable that the seeming hate campaign against the President will not cease until his last day in office.

“The latest dirty political stunt underscores the obsession of PRRD’s foes to embarrass him and put him to ridicule at every opportunity presented to them,” Panelo said

“The popularity and the acceptance of the President by those who overwhelmingly voted him into office cannot, however, be eroded or diminished, no matter how these incorrigible whiners and nitpickers try hard to destroy him. The more they throw mud at him, the more he comes out clean and appreciated by the people,” he concluded. (with details from Rosalie Coz) /mbmf

Iraqis defy tear gas, upcoming curfew as protests stretch on

Robie de Guzman   •   October 29, 2019

 Iraqi protesters react after police fired tear gas at them during a protest at al-Tahrir square, central Baghdad, Iraq, 28 October 2019. EPA-EFE/MURTAJA LATEEF

Thousands of people in Baghdad continued their protests at Tahrir Square in central Baghdad on Monday (October 28), defying a curfew scheduled to be imposed from midnight until 6am (2100GMT to 0300 GMT).

Protesters took to the streets for a fourth day, despite having endured bloody clashes over the weekend and an overnight raid by security forces seeking to disperse them.

At least 74 Iraqis were killed and hundreds wounded across the country on Friday (October 25) and Saturday (October 26) as demonstrators clashed with security forces and militia groups in the second wave of this month’s protests against Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi’s government.

More than 200 people have been killed in October so far.

Iraqi security forces on Monday fired tear gas at school and university students who defied a warning from the prime minister and joined anti-government protests.

A spokesman for Abdul Mahdi, whose position is increasingly precarious as he faces the largest challenge since he came to power a year ago, said on Sunday (October 27) that anyone disrupting work or school days would be severely punished.

Mass street protests in Baghdad and other cities in the southern Shi’te heartland against economic hardship began at the start of the month and resumed on Friday after a pause of about two weeks. (Reuters)

READ: DFA cautions Filipinos against travel to Iraq

(Production: Haider Kadhim, Mohammed Al-Ramahi, Mohammed Katfan, Hannah Ellison)

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US Military: No footage on Baghdadi’s death will be released

Robie de Guzman   •   October 29, 2019

US President Donald J. Trump answers a reporter’s question as he participates in a briefing with senior military leaders in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, DC, USA, on 07 October 2019. At right is United States Army General Mark A. Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. EPA-EFE/Ron Sachs

Islamic State (IS) leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s remains had been disposed of and there were no plans to share footage on his death, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley announced on Monday.

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Sunday that al-Baghdadi had been killed in a U.S. military operation in Syria.

Trump said earlier that part of the footage on the operation would be released, but military sources said that the footage might expose some confidential information about the U.S. military, adding that the footage should go through strict checks before it is published.

The Associated Press on Monday released footage taken by a witness when the U.S. military launched a raid in northwestern Syria — but the authenticity of the footage has not been verified.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Monday expressed “prudent welcome” to Baghdadi’s death, saying the U.S. has made a big contribution to fighting terrorism “if confirmed”.

The Russian Defense Ministry said on Sunday that it does not have reliable information about the U.S. operation in the Idlib de-escalation zone in Syria that allegedly killed IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi on Monday stressed that the extremist ideology and the support for it still exist in the Middle East, and the death of Baghdadi was a “creature” killed by the U.S.

On the same day, Iranian government Spokesman Ali Rabiee said al-Baghdadi’s death is the end of a symbol of “destructive terrorism,” and the U.S. should end its interventions in the Middle East. (Reuters)

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