Monthly Archives: February 2013

Israel tries to destabilize and weaken Syria


President al-Assad: Israeli Aggression Reveals Israel’s Role in Destabilizing Syria

February 3, 2013

President Bashar al-Assad said that the Israeli aggression on a scientific research center in Jamraya in Damascus countryside reveals Israel’s role, in collaboration with the hostile foreign powers and their tools in Syria, to destabilize and weaken Syria so as to force it to give up its national and Pan-Arab stances and principles .

Receiving Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, Saeed Jalili on Sunday, President al-Assad stressed that Syria is capable of confronting current challenges and repelling any aggression targeting the Syrian people and their historic and cultural role, thanks to the awareness of the Syrians, the might of the Syrian army and Syria’s adherence to the path of resistance.

Jalili expressed trust in the wisdom of the Syrian leadership in dealing with the aggression that targets Syria’s pioneering role, stressing Iran’s full support to the Syrian people in confronting the Zionist entity and its keenness on continuing coordination with Syria for confronting external conspiracies and schemes that aim to destabilize the region.

Jalili conveyed Iran’s appreciation for the political solution plan for solving the crisis announced by President al-Assad and the Syrian government’s steps to implement it, reiterating Tehran’s readiness to offer all help needed for making the national dialogue a success as it is the only way out of the crisis.

The two sides also discussed the outstanding cooperation relations between Syria and Iran and the two leaderships’ mutual keenness on further enhancing them in all fields.

The meeting discussed the situation in the region in general and Syria in particular, especially in the aftermath of the blatant Israeli aggression on Jamraya scientific center in Damascus Countryside.

In a relevant context, Foreign and Expatriates Minister, Walid al-Moallem held a meeting with Jalili, in which al-Moallem stressed that the Israeli aggression on Syria proves its direct complicity with the armed terrorist groups to destroy the infrastructure and sabotage development centers in Syria.

He added that the consistency of roles between Israel and these terrorist groups stresses Israel’s hostility and violation of the rules of the international law.

In turn, Jalili condemned the Israeli raid on Syria, considering it as a proof on Israel’s aggressive nature and its being a threat to the security and stability in the region.

Deputy Foreign and Expatriates Minister Fayssal Mikdad, Assistant Foreign and Expatriates Minister, Ahmad Arnous, Director of Asia Department at the Ministry , the Iranian Ambassador in Damascus and the delegation accompanying Jalili attended the meeting.

R. Raslan/ H. Said/ M. Ismael


French troops in Algeria and Syria


French troops in Algeria

Between 1954, when the Algerian uprising against French colonial rule broke out, and 1962, when Algeria became an independent republic, some two million French soldiers crossed the Mediterranean to fight against the FLN’s (National Liberation Front) guerrillas in an operation that marked a generation. Most of these soldiers were conscripts. In Paris, the developing war in Algeria led to the fall of six prime ministers, the collapse of the IVth republic, the return of General de Gaulle to power at the head of the Vth republic — a vehicle of his own creation — and near civil war following an attempted right-wing coup in Algiers.

During the war, atrocities were committed on both sides, and after it, with the general amnesty declared at Evian as part of its negotiated settlement, many of these were officially forgotten. France turned to interior self-modernization, while Algeria began a process of nation-building under the tutelage of the victorious FLN.

More recently, however, there has been a move to disinter the past in the wake of recent, well-publicized revelations in France concerning the extent of human-rights violations, specifically the torture and murder of those suspected of being members or sympathizers of the FLN, by the French army in Algeria and by the authorities in France itself. In recent months both the French president, Jacques Chirac, and the prime minister, Lionel Jospin, have referred to these reports, mostly stressing the need to consider them in their historical context and talking of the need for “national healing” to take place. “Let history do its work,” said Chirac, interviewed recently on the television channel TF1. Former generals have also appeared on television admitting that they used torture to interrogate suspects during the Algerian War.

With the official records of the period remaining largely closed, however, and with those committing them never having been held accountable either for their orders or for their acts, other voices have been a lot less diplomatic than have those of the political establishment.

French troops in Syria

In 1920, an independent Arab kingdom of Syria was established under king Faysal of the Hashemite family. His rule ended after few months, following the clash between Syrian forces and regular French forces at the battle of Maysalun. French troops occupied Syria later that year after the league of Nations put Syrian under the French mandate. With the fall of France in 1940, Syria came under the control of the Vichy Government until the British and Free French occupied the country in July 1941. Continuing pressure from Syrian nationalist groups forced the French to evacuate their troops in April 1946, leaving the country in the hands of a republican government that had been formed during the mandate.

Actually, the self-proclaimed Free Syrian Army is called the “sole legitimate representative of the Syrian people” by the French neo-colonial leaders.

Photo: French soldiers in Algeria

Human trafficking


Over the past decade, “trafficking in persons” or “human trafficking” for commercial sexual exploitation has been one of the fastest growing areas of international organized criminal activity. In simplest terms, human trafficking is “a cruel, ruthless, and cynical form of human exploitation, a serious crime, and a gross violation of human dignity.” In legal terms, it is “the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons, by means of threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve consent of a person having control over an-other person for the purpose of exploitation.”

Even though the terms “human trafficking” and “human smuggling” are at times used interchangeably, the critical factor that distinguishes trafficking from smuggling is the use of force, coercion and/or deception in order to exploit the victims. In other words, while human smuggling refers only to the illegal transport of a person across international borders for benefit or profit and does not necessarily entail exploitation, human trafficking entails sexual exploitation, forced labor, slavery, or practices similar to slavery.

Each year, hundred thousands, even millions of persons are trafficked and used as commodities. According to the United States Department of State, 700,000 to 2 million people, of whom 35% are under the age of 18, are trafficked each year. According to the United Nations (UN) estimates of 2008, about 2.5 million people from 127 countries have been trafficked to 137 countries in that particular year for purposes such as forced labor, sexual exploitation, the removal of organs, and forced marriages. In addition, 2009 estimates of Amnesty International indicate that 4 million people are trafficked or smuggled across borders annually. In addition to international trafficking, internal trafficking—trafficking that does not cross national borders—claims an estimated additional four to twenty-seven million persons to that figures. These worrying numbers indeed reveal a human tragedy of massive proportions.

By Arda Bilgen on 25/3/2012

Jelena Bjelica: les filières du crime organisé et de la prostitution


De la Roumanie à la France, Jelena Bjelica remonte les filières du crime organisé et de la prostitution. Rencontres, témoignages, son récit donne la parole aux femmes bafouées et aux organisations qui les défendent.

On suit avec elle l’itinéraire de prostituées de l’Est : comment elles se sont fait piéger, comment elles ont vécu l’enfer et comment elles ont survécu… Les mots sont durs, mais le récit est limpide. Et surtout nécessaire.

Ce livre n’est pas un essai, c’est un cri de révolte. Contre les politiques corrompus, contre les profiteurs de misère, contre les gouvernements occidentaux qui ferment les yeux.

Engagée mais lucide, Jelena est avant tout une journaliste. L’enquête est minutieuse, elle fait taire les rumeurs et dissipe les légendes. D’une part, elle dénonce, à l’Est, l’implication des politiques dans l’organisation de la traite et, d’autre part, en Europe occidentale, elle souligne l’incohérence des programmes de lutte.

L’Europe communautaire qui se cherche n’a visiblement pas encore trouvé un système efficace pour protéger les victimes de l’exploitation sexuelle. Car comme le souligne Jelena, la lutte doit être mené à l’échelle du continent.

Ce livre est également l’occasion de rendre hommage aux associations qui dénoncent les réseaux criminels et qui défendent les prostituées (Le Bus des Femmes, le Nid, Karo, la Strada…). Elles fournissent à ces femmes un accompagnement sanitaire nécessaire (distribution de préservatifs), et leur apportent un soutien moral indispensable.

Jelena nous offre donc un témoignage simple et bouleversant, un livre plein d’humanisme et de compassion. Avec cet ouvrage, la traite des femmes n’est plus un mythe, une réalité fantasmée, c’est désormais une expérience concrète que nous devons combattre.

10 octobre 2005

Prostitution: l’esclavage des filles de l’Est

Photo: Jelena Bjelica admitted to the degree of Master of Arts in Journalism by Kijac Head of School Dr. Willem Houwen. – Photo by Isak Vorgucic

Syria: Human Rights Activists | mercenaries of death


A Reminder That Terrorists Have Been Beheading for 2 Years Now in Syria

The following content has been identified by the YouTube community as being potentially offensive or inappropriate. Viewer discretion is advised.

Don’t let the media mislead you anymore. Terrorists have been sent into Syria by the USA and were called peaceful human rights activists at the very beginning of the Obama/Clinton plan to overthrow Bashar Al Assad.

All carefully planned, how their name has changed by the media, who still call them rebels in Syria, but terrorists in other countries. The media don’t even call them the FSA anymore, because it is obvious from all their films that they are Al Qaeda.

Just in case any of you missed was happening at the time, this film was uploaded in May 2011. One of many films of beheadings I was sent at the time. The US and the Western media will have you believe that Al Qaeda has only recently joined a revolution, but this is not true, as this has been carefully planned from the start by the USA, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Al Jazeera as one of their propaganda tools.

Turkey was the sucker that had to do what the USA told them too. Recep Tayyip Erdogan was helped into his position in Turkey by the USA and now he has to do what he is told as payback. Just another puppet of the USA.

Top export and abuse of children

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Delegation of the European Commission to the United Nations
EU-UN related questions
Madam Sarah Curran
Information Officer
222 East 41st Street 20th Floor New York, NY 10017
United States

Brussels, 19th Mars 2007


Dear Madam,


More than 900,000 children each year are victims of abuse or neglect, and research shows that this has far-reaching negative effects on our society. Children and youth who have been abused or neglected are more likely to use alcohol and drugs, fall victim to teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, suffer from depression and mental illness, be involved with law enforcement, and abuse their own children. And the direct costs to our society for the damage resulting from child abuse and neglect are enormous.

Attempts by Western families to adopt children from poor nations have fuelled a rogue market in young lives.
Overseas adoption is big business, and growing: last year, more than 2,150 Ukrainian children and almost 8,000 Russian children were adopted to foreign countries. Most of those went to the US, where Russia is second only to China as a provider of adoptees and Ukraine ranks sixth. Italy and Spain adopt hundreds of children each year, as do Canadians.

In an industry fuelled by money and the desperation of would-be parents, and complicated by haphazard or non-existent regulations, private agencies and corruption among poorly paid officials, there are countless tales of fraud – babies sold twice to different families, adoption facilitators who have made off with thousands, mothers who were duped into giving up their newborns.

Romania, which 15 years ago had massive media coverage over the state of its orphanages, passed a law in July limiting foreign adoption to a child’s grandparents. Last month, France and Romania set up a committee to help 130 French couples already in the process of adopting Romanian orphans.

I’m sure that you share my concern about child maltreatment and adoption, and recognize this as a tragedy that demands european and international leadership.

It’s the best response to such an immense and complex issue and I believe is the most effective way to focus the public health and child welfare resources necessary to create a safe, caring, and healthy future for our children.




To sign the petition:


Babies-for-sale trade faces a global crackdown

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Attempts by Western families to adopt children from poor nations have fuelled a rogue market in young lives. But at last action is being taken. Carolyn Wheeler reports from Lviv, Ukraine

The thick stack of photographs pulled from a manila envelope in Maria Chernyk’s cupboard explains all she has to say about foreign adoptions. Each year, the director of Lviv’s Orphanage No 1 sends a handful of children overseas: most to the United States, many to Italy, some to Germany, France and Canada, one to a Ukrainian couple in Manchester.

She tracks them with this collection of photos: a sweet blond boy with a crossed eye, a slender, solemn-faced girl who needed heart surgery, a little boy so traumatised by his past that he never spoke.

Each family paid dearly for the privilege of being parents, over £15,000 in many cases, to cover travel, agency fees and the demands of dozens of bureaucrats.

Chernyk is a staunch defender of the web of bureaucracy and money that foreign adoption has become: her orphanage is better able to care for the children left behind with donations that include a television, new carpets and medicines. And the children adopted are – judging from the photographs – well cared for far from the run-down orphanage and far from the politics threatening the adoptions of others like them.

‘I am in favour of, and will continue to support, international adoption, because I have seen the results,’ said Chernyk, whose orphanage is so strapped for resources she had to ask a friend abroad to collect milk powder last year.

Overseas adoption is big business, and growing: last year, more than 2,150 Ukrainian children and almost 8,000 Russian children were adopted to foreign countries. Most of those went to the US, where Russia is second only to China as a provider of adoptees and Ukraine ranks sixth. Italy and Spain adopt hundreds of children each year, as do Canadians. British parents applied to adopt 26 Russian children last year – none from Ukraine, where adoption is on hold over a disagreement over regulations.

China is still a reliable source of girls but eastern European countries are also popular. A child who looks like his or her parents leads to fewer embarrassing questions in the playground or supermarket. It is often faster to get a baby or toddler from abroad and adopting from another culture, particularly a country where adoption records are sealed and poverty is rampant, takes away some of the fear of a birth mother coming knocking.

In an industry fuelled by money and the desperation of would-be parents, and complicated by haphazard or non-existent regulations, private agencies and corruption among poorly paid officials, there are countless tales of fraud – babies sold twice to different families, adoption facilitators who have made off with thousands, mothers who were duped into giving up their newborns.

Some families spend thousands only to go home empty-handed, after finding the child referred to them is ill, or not the right age, or gender, or that the official required to approve an adoption is ill or has been fired. Even in above-board adoption cases, large donations to orphanages are considered mandatory, whether as money or in clothing, food or medical supplies and adoptive parents are counselled to bring gifts for a long list of government officials to help things go smoothly.

‘I have to be careful what I say, but an awful lot of $100 bills were floating across tables in Kiev and Odessa. It did appear to open things up and get things moving,’ said Brad Parr, a 47-year-old Texan who adopted a two-year-old Ukrainian girl two years ago, after weeks of arguing with officials, weeding through listings and travelling from orphanage to orphanage. ‘It worked out we got a great kid but we had to put a lot of pressure on them – you’re not going there to be a tourist. You’re going to conduct business.’

And the business is lucrative. A decade ago, several doctors and nurses in Lviv were charged with accepting bribes and forging documents, even coercing mothers into giving up their newborns or telling them their babies had died, to allow them to be adopted abroad.

Today, Ukrainian adoption officials won’t talk about that case, except to say it was the catalyst for sweeping changes to foreign adoption laws. Families from abroad who could once take babies straight from maternity homes, must now wait for older children who have spent a year listed with the National Adoption Centre’s registry, and may not look at any child other than the given referral. Private agencies, which flourish in other countries, are now illegal in Ukraine, though a number operate outside Ukraine to co-ordinate documents and arrange translators.

But baby-selling accusations have popped up in almost every country that permits foreign adoptions. In June, British Children’s Minister Margaret Hodge suspended all adoptions from Cambodia over charges of falsified documents, illegal adoption facilitators and the coercion of mothers to hand over their children.

For many young Cambodian orphans, adoption means a much sought-after ticket to prosperity and security but the darker side is widespread reports of unscrupulous brokers buying infants from poverty-stricken parents and selling them, at a huge profit, to Western couples.

More than 2,300 children have been adopted by foreigners in Cambodia in the last six years. The Prime Minister, Hun Sen, suspended all foreign adoptions for a short period four years ago but then lifted the ban, pending legislation regulating the industry.

‘It’s the worst form of exploitation. The parents are often desperate and will turn a blind eye or simply do not want to know,’ said one charity worker in the capital, Phnom Penh. ‘This country is without a proper system of law and pretty much everything can be bought: officials, permits, people. The problem is the demand not supply. If we stamp it out here it will go elsewhere.’

Middlemen persuade women in dirt-poor villages to give up their babies for between $20 and $50 or babies are bought directly from orphanages in Cambodia, which has a long tradition of children being sold into prostitution or slavery.

Main Dim, 40, was divorced with five children when she became pregnant by a man who abandoned her. Worried that she would not be able to care for another child, Main Dim agreed to sell her baby for $50. ‘He was crying when I let him go. So was I,’ she said. Still, she is seen as ‘the lucky one’ in her village of Laing Kout. Unlike others, she gets $100 a year from the American family and has received dozens of pictures: the boy bundled in ski clothes, in a bath with his blond-haired sister and another Cambodian brother.

‘I still miss him, but when I see the pictures I’m happy, because he does have a better life than any I could give him,’ she said, showing off a radio given to her by the boy’s new family. ‘If they offered to give him back, of course, I’d want that. But at least I know he’s being taken care of.’

Sou Soam, 64, hopes that’s true for her grandson, too, but she has no way of knowing. She sold the day-old boy for $40 after her daughter died in childbirth seven years ago. ‘I just want to see how he’s grown, what he looks like,’ said Sou Soam. ‘I had no money and five other grandchildren to care for.’

Most Cambodian parents think they were doing the right thing. Run Chenda, sold by her mother into prostitution aged nine for $80, says children who go to rich foreigners are the lucky ones. ‘If I could trade places with any of them, I would,’ she said.

In Azerbaijan, six doctors and nurses are now on trial on charges of illegally handing over nearly 200 children to foreigners for adoption. A temporary moratorium has been declared on foreign adoptions in the country until the rules are re-examined.

Romania, which 15 years ago had massive media coverage over the state of its orphanages, passed a law in July limiting foreign adoption to a child’s grandparents. Last month, France and Romania set up a committee to help 130 French couples already in the process of adopting Romanian orphans.

In Russia, where tabloids fed on the news that German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder had adopted a Russian child and that actress Angelina Jolie planned to, deputy prosecutor-general Vladimir Kolesnikov said bribery and fraud is still widespread. Last year a man was jailed after selling 558 children over the course of eight years.

‘There is trafficking in children in Russia,’ said Ekaterina Lakhova, head of the Duma committee on family affairs and a critic of foreign adoption. She points to reports of Russian children being abused in their new families: an American couple in New Jersey were jailed for 10 years for abusing their seven-year-old adopted son, Viktor, who died of hypothermia after being made to sleep in an unheated cellar, and a Colorado woman recently tried to re-sell her Russian daughter on the Internet.

‘We are unable to monitor the support of Russian children adopted by foreigners. Russia’s jurisdiction does not transcend the borders of our country,’ Lakhova said.

In 2000, President Vladimir Putin required all adoption agencies in Russia to obtain certificates, a process that temporarily halted adoptions and left the country with about 90 private agencies, more than half based in America.

But Russia is now about to go further. After a series of committee hearings last week, the Duma is considering a draft law to limit adoptions to countries that have signed a bilateral agreement. This would temporarily halt adoption to Britain and Italy, and entirely end adoptions to Canada and the US. Lakhova estimates some 100 agencies work illegally in Russia.

‘It is virtually impossible to bring people abusing these procedures to criminal or administrative responsibility. There is a need to establish state control over the adoption procedure in Russia and to ensure the rights of adopted children abroad.’

As the political debate continues, would-be parents are faced with a long, expensive and uncertain process while orphanage directors worry that a major source of donations will dry up.

‘I would tell those politicians [who would block adoptions], then provide these children with a good life,’ Chernyk said. ‘I am always struggling with people like that. I am used to it. But every time I hear that, I say just try. You just try to come here and take care of these kids, wash them, feed them, clothe them.’

The orphanage, a 30-year-old brick building in a grey suburb, receives state money only for food, medicine, utilities and staff. It’s a paltry amount: Employees are paid an average of 400 hryvnya, £40, per month; the budget allows 2,000 hryvnia, or £203, a year for medicine for 120 children, and 130,000 hryvnya, £13,200, for food.

Between 10 and 14 children share a room with two carers, small white beds lined up end to end, and a picture of Jesus with lambs on the wall. Murals, painted by volunteers in the common rooms, break up the monotony and each room is spotlessly clean. An upstairs room boasts a television and a new rug; a playroom is crammed with toys, all courtesy of charities in Ukraine and abroad.

But the hallways are dark, their lightbulbs burnt out with no money to replace them, or turned off to save electricity. The hallway floors and staircases are cold, bare cement. Paint peels and the smell of cabbage wafts through the hallways.

It is an existence of little hope for children caught in a legal limbo: those left here by a parent who has little to no contact, but will not relinquish parental rights. For the few available for adoption, the thought of a family of their own – even one far away that speaks a different lan guage – is an obsession. Gifts left behind by adoptive parents, books, a stack of Canadian flags, are constant reminders. Meanwhile, the children don’t know the world outside these walls but they all say: ‘I want a mother, I want a father.’

‘All kids want a family,’ Chernyk said. Adoption advocates, who are also working to make adoption more appealing to local families, say any move to tighten regulations will condemn thousands of children to a life that ends on the street’.

‘I feel really sick about what was pronounced there,’ said Boris Altschuler of Russias Right of the Child advocacy group. ‘We must be grateful that these people save our children, more than 7,000 a year, and give them the happiness of life in a family. We should not be counting the money in their pockets.

Sunday November 21, 2004