Tag: Paris

After the UK scare, coronavirus lands in Antarctica
Geopolitics

After the UK scare, coronavirus lands in Antarctica

Coronavirus lands in Antarctica: The first passengers to arrive from the United Kingdom landed in Calais, France, after the French Minister of Transport Jean-Baptiste Djebbari announced last night that air, sea, and rail connections would resume this morning. To travellers over 11 years old is required to show, upon arrival, a negative Covid-19 test. The first ferry to leave Dover, the ‘Cotes des Flandres’ arrived in Calais at around 3.30 am local time, followed shortly after by another ferry. Arrivals from the UK to France were suspended from Sunday, following the new British variant of the coronavirus discovery, which generated panic and concerns among other nations.

The coronavirus pandemic is not under control in France. A new blockade must remain an option, Karine Lacombe, head of the infectious disease unit at Saint-Antoine hospital in Paris, said Wednesday. “On the epidemiological front, the epidemic is not at all under control,” Lacombe told BfmFm TV. Medical experts expressed concern that holiday season could lead to a resurgence of cases in France and Europe. Data released Tuesday showed that France reported an additional 802 related deaths in the past 24 hours and 11,800 new cases.

In addition to France, Belgium and the Netherlands also partially reopen their borders with the UK. The decision arrived to allow their compatriots to return and unblock the traffic of goods. Germany extended the closure of the borders, with both Great Britain and South Africa, the two countries where outbreaks of the new most contagious coronavirus strain have developed, until 6 January. Spain, as well, suspended inbound flights until January 5 and Ireland until the end of the year. Germany recorded over 24,000 cases of coronavirus, and 962 deaths, in the last 24 hours. According to the Robert Koch Institute, whose president Lothar Wieler urged the Germans to give up traveling on holidays to stem the infections.

Singapore authorities have also blocked the arrivals or transit of passengers from the UK following the new variant of the coronavirus’ discovery. The Singapore Ministry of Health has specified that passengers who have been in the UK in the past 14 days will not be allowed to enter the country until further notice. The decision will have consequences, especially for people bound for Australia who stopover in Singapore.

While the White House emergency officer announced her resignation, the virus has landed in Antarctica, the only continent that has so far had no case. The presence of the virus has been recorded on all seven continents. The Chilean military has reported 36 cases of Covid-19 at its Bernardo O’Higgins research station in the Antarctic Peninsula. The infected, including 26 military and ten maintenance workers, were moved back to Chile. The news comes a few days after the Chilean navy confirmed three coronavirus contagions on a ship that had brought supplies and personnel to the research station. The Sargento Aldea ship arrived at the station on 27 November and returned to Chile on 10 December. Three crew members had tested positive on their return to the Talcahuano base. Chile is the sixth most affected country in Latin America, with over 585,000 COVID-19 confirmed cases.

Paris municipality sanctioned for having appointed too many women
Europe

Paris municipality sanctioned for having appointed too many women

Paris municipality sanctioned: The municipal team of the socialist Anne Hidalgo is pinned by the state for having hired too many female officials. As reported by our colleagues of Le Monde, the city of Paris will have to pay a fine of 90,000 euros because it did not respect, in 2018, the Sauvadet law of March 12, 2012, which imposed a minimum rate of each sex for appointments to managerial positions in the public service. For the Civil Service Ministry, in fact, equality between women and men works both ways. The city of Paris has just learned it in a hard way. In 2018, Anne Hidalgo’s team appointed more women than men to senior positions. Unbalanced promotions are now sanctioned, even though the public service is still too slowly feminized.

In France, only one-third of managerial jobs in the public service are held by women. To fight against this under-representation, the Paris town hall thought it was doing well by appointing 11 women and 5 men as directors and deputy directors in 2018. No, replies the ministry, for whom these promotions result in non-compliance with the legal objective of 40% of appointments of people of each sex within the public service, imposed by the Sauvadet law of 2012. Indeed, thanks to These assignments, the rate of female appointments that year rose to 69%. But despite these appointments, the percentage of female senior executives at Paris City Hall was 47%. 

A situation not so unbalanced…

In 2017, the town hall of Lille and the city of Bourg-en-Bresse were victims of the same situation. Conscious of missing the spirit of the law, the government ended up integrating a new provision in 2019. It provides for an exemption from penalties for employers who appoint more men or women if this does not result in an imbalance among the jobs concerned. But for the city of Paris, this measure comes too late. In the eyes of the state, the town hall remains required to pay 90,000 euros in penalties for 2018. A gruesome situation that fortunately does not discourage the municipal team of Anne Hidalgo, who wishes to continue to act to increase the proportion of women in trades traditionally occupied by men.

At Le Monde, Anne Hidalgo deputy in Human Resources, Antoine Guillou, wonders about this fine of 90,000 euros, deeming paradoxical to reproach appointments, which make it possible to catch up with a delay. As the French newspaper notes, the City of Paris is stepping up its efforts to promote gender diversity in the city’s jobs, especially those that are generally occupied by men, such as engineers (who today are only 40% of women) and garbage collectors (5%).

Macron to form a council of Imams
Europe

Macron to form a council of Imams

Macron to form a council of Imams: Europe continues to seek solutions to radical Islam sponsored by the Muslim Brotherhood in the wake of the recent attacks that have bloodied Paris, Manchester, and Vienna. The biggest problems occurred in France, where the government has chosen a hard line against political Islam, ordering the closure of some mosques and Islamic centers considered to be at high risk. Turkey and Qatar were financing most of them.

 In these places were taught ideas not in line with the secular principles of the Republic. To find a solution to the crisis, French President Emmanuel Macron received, on Wednesday evening, officials of the Islamic religion in France. Who presented, at his request, guidelines for the formation of a national council of imams in charge of issuing or withdraw credits when necessary to religious Muslims in France.

The French presidency said Macron also asked his interlocutors to draw up, within 15 days, a “republican charter of values” to which the French Council of Islamic faith and the nine federations that make it up must abide. The Elysée stressed that Macron gave Parliament officials two weeks to prepare this Charter, confirming information published in the newspapers “Le Figaro” and “Le Parisien.”

The French president asked his interlocutors to include in the treaty the recognition of the values ​​of the Republic, specifying that Islam in France is a religion and not a political movement, putting an end to interference or affiliations with foreign countries. The head of the French Council of Islamic Religion, Mohamed Moussaoui, the dean of the Paris mosque, Shams El-Din Hafez, as well as representatives of the nine federations of the French Council of the Muslim religion attended the meeting.

After the two attacks that killed the teacher, Samuel Patty, near Paris, and the killing of three civilians in a cathedral in Nice, Macron has increased his pressure on the leaders of the Islamic religion in France to clean it of foreign influence, from the extremism and political tendencies of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Macron expected that with the formation of the National Council of Imams, the presence of 300 foreign imams in France with scholarships allocated by Turkey, Morocco and Algeria would end within four years. In his meeting with leaders of the Islamic religion, Macron told representatives of the nine federations affiliated with the French Council of Islam that he was aware that some of them had ambiguous positions on these issues, stressing that the time had come to “get out of this confusion.”

Macron warns Islamic organizations and, according to the Elysée, among these nine unions that represent a large portion of French Muslims, there are three that do not adopt a republican view. The president therefore warned his interlocutors that “if some people do not sign this charter, we will conclude,” stressing that he has taken note of their proposals. The Council of Imams will not only be authorized to issue permits to imams and give them an official card, but it can also withdraw them if they violate the “Charter of Values ​​of the Republic,” and the moral code reached by exponents of French Islam. 

Depending on the role of each of them: a prayer imam, a mosque preacher, and a preacher, each imam will need to be familiar with a different level of French and possess academic qualifications equivalent to the university level to fill such positions on French territory. In early October, Macron denounced radical Islam and “Islamist separatism” after a knife attack near the former Charlie Hebdo office.  Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, fuelled the fire by delivering controversial remarks in defense of terrorists and Muslims offended by Charlie Hebdo caricatures, representing the prophet Mohammed.

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