ينتقل إلى قاعات أن 1، أن 2 وأن 3 من مركز معارض شنغهاي الدولي الجديد شنغهاي، 8 تموز/يوليو، 2016 / بي آر نيوزواير / — سيتم عرض طائفة كاملة من منتجات الصوت والإضاءة والمسرح والتسلية المهنية من أكثر من 500 ماركة وشركة رائدة في الصناعة في معرض برولايت + سانوند شنغهاي 2016 الذي سيعقد في […]Read more
WASHINGTON — Next week, international powers mark one year since the announcement of the most sweeping diplomatic agreement in decades: The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, colloquially known as the Iran nuclear deal.
But has Iran complied? Has the West? From what we know, all sides are abiding by the agreement. But we are in early stages yet.
The Iran deal outlines a multi-phased action plan to govern Iran’s nuclear work over fifteen years, and we remain in the very first stage of that plan.
While powers are marking the JCPOA’s one year anniversary, the deal has technically been in effect for only six months. That’s because, while the deal was adopted last July, ‘Implementation Day’ was first declared in January after Iran had completed a series of requisite tasks.
Before implementation, Iran was compelled to reduce its uranium stockpile to less than 300 kilograms, neuter its plutonium heavy-water reactor, cease nuclear enrichment operations in its mountain facility in Fordow, disconnect and store two thirds of its centrifuges, and allow for international inspectors to set up new monitoring systems in its declared facilities.
So to Western governments, many of the most urgently troubling dimensions of Iran’s nuclear work were actually addressed before the agreement formally began. And all of these tasks were verified as complete in January.
To remain in compliance, Iran now must maintain those levels of enrichment, number of active facilities and size of its nuclear infrastructure throughout several years– the number of years depending on the sunset clauses for each specific provision.
While some broad terms of the agreement are indefinite, most provisions in the deal end in either ten or 15 years. And many of those provisions address highly technical aspects of Iran’s nuclear program: From its acquisition of nuclear-related materials to its experimentation or use of those materials, and everything in between.
And some of Iran’s actions are easier to verify than others, which makes it impossible to state with absolute confidence that Iran is abiding by the agreement in its entirety. This is a source of many critical concerns, although the architects of the deal say that no perfect deal could have been achieved.
Iran has thus far abided by its commitment to keep its enrichment of uranium under 3.67 percent, for example, and it is operating only with the agreed-upon 5,060 1970s-era centrifuges. Higher enrichment levels achieved in more efficient and advanced centrifuges would drop the time Iran would need to acquire enough highly-enriched uranium for a nuclear bomb, effectively to zero.
What is more difficult to verify is whether Tehran is producing or acquiring plutonium or uranium metals or their alloys, or conducting R&D on plutonium or uranium metallurgy, in violation of the agreement, from purchases on the black market and in undeclared research facilities.
The inspection regime in the JCPOA is hailed as the most advanced ever achieved through diplomacy, but it still governs only Iran’s declared nuclear supply chain: The uranium mines, mills, storage facilities and enrichment facilities that Tehran chooses to tell the UN about. Thus, UN declarations that Iran is in compliance in actuality refer to Iran’s compliance to the terms of the JCPOA within those facilities.
Iran is still required within one year of implementation to ship out of country all of its spent fuel from its lone plutonium reactor in Arak. Tehran says it is working with Beijing on a scheme to redesign this heavy-water IR-40 reactor– another obligation of the deal.
International powers and bodies– chiefly the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency, which polices the deal– have declared Iran in full compliance up until this point, and no formal party to the deal has challenged this.
Nor has Israel questioned whether Iran is in following the letter of the UN Security Council law in public, although it remains possible that classified intelligence suggests otherwise.
But the concerns of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last year, when he publicly fought the agreement, were twofold. He firstly worried that Iran would violate the deal in undetectable ways– through undeclared channels and facilities, too sophisticated for the inspections regime to pick up on. But he secondly feared that Iran would abide by the agreement to a tee; That the agreement would allow Iran to glide toward an internationally legitimatized, industrial-sized nuclear program once several of these sunset provisions expire. And the political ramifications of this second concern will not reverberate for several more years.
On Implementation Day, January 16, President Barack Obama signed all relevant executive waivers to relieve US sanctions on Iran passed specifically to target its nuclear program. And the UN Security Council, the European Union and its financial agencies and regulators followed suit.
Iran’s government generally seems content that its partners on the other side of the negotiating table– the US, United Kingdom, France, Russia, China and Germany– are in compliance with their sanctions-related commitments. But there have been at least three instances in which they have explicitly accused the US of violating the deal.
The first instance came after the president signed a bill restricting the travel of Iranian dual nationals, or of foreign nationals who had recently visited Iran, who previously had access to the US visa waiver program. No citizens of or recent visitors to Syria, Iraq, Iran or Sudan are able to travel to the US visa-free anymore, including those living, working or also enjoying citizenship in Europe.
That new law infuriated Iranian officials, who accused the US of seeking to hamper new business in Iran by restricting the travel opportunities of potential investors. US Secretary of State John Kerry swiftly wrote to his Iranian counterpart, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, assuring him that the bill would do no such thing and that the State Department has the power to offer frequent waivers.
Secondly, Iran is now warning the US Congress not to attempt to halt its $25 billion purchase of American-made Boeing aircraft, which Tehran maintains is necessary to upgrade its dangerously aging domestic fleet.
Doing so would violate the agreement, Iran contends, pointing to a provision of the JCPOA which commits the US to “allow for the sale of commercial passenger aircraft and related parts and services” for “exclusively civil aviation end-use.”
But it is that last part– “exclusively civil aviation end-use”– that has some members of Congress convinced the Boeing deal can legally be halted, in compliance with the JCPOA. That’s because the US Treasury Department, State Department, and intelligence agencies all assess that Iran Air and its subsidiary, Mahan Air, are complicit in illicit arms transfers to Lebanon-based terrorist organization Hezbollah or in the assistance of Syria’s embattled president, Bashar Assad.
Tehran’s third effort to cast the US in violation amounted to a broader critique, delivered by no less than Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, on June 21.
Khamenei tweeted of a “US betrayal in #JCPOA”– referring generally speaking not to any technical violation of the accord, but to his impression that the US is seeking to undermine the spirit of the deal by dissuading business investment in Iran.
He questions whether Treasury Department officials are truly sending the message to international investors that their assets are safe in the Islamic Republic. US officials say that they cannot control the will and business decisions of investors, who may continue to view Iran as a long term risk.
But Khamenei’s critique represents a political challenge to the agreement– one of several sure to arise with increasing veracity in the years to come.Read more
Rome, Italy (PANA) – While Africa is expected to experience its slowest growth rate this millennium, the President of the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Kanayo Nwanze, has brought a strong message of optimism to government and business leaders gathering for the Grow Africa Investment Forum and the World Economic Forum on Africa (WEF) in Kigali, Rwanda, this week. Full text…
©-Panapress-09 may 2016 09:55:10-thread Agriculture (479words)Read more
Kenya and Israel have developed strong cooperation on matters of agriculture and water technologies.
During his visit, Netanyahu and Kenyatta discussed issues in the health and immigration areas.
They attended a farewell ceremony for Kenyan students leaving for Israel for further studies in water technologies and irrigation as part of an Israel-funded program.
Netanyahu’s maiden tour of Africa started with a visit to Entebbe, Uganda on Monday, coinciding with the 40th anniversary of the Israeli commando raid on Entebbe airport which freed Israeli hostages from a hijacked plane.
He will also visit Rwanda and Ethiopia.
Kenyan leader woos Israeli investors during Netanyahu’s visit
NAIROBI (Xinhua) — Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has called on Israeli business community to take advantage of the country’s enormous natural resources and invest.
He was speaking at a Kenya-Israel Business Forum which brough together business people from the two countries and was also attended by visiting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Kenyatta said the main objective of his government was to expand and improve the country’s economy.
“We are doing our best to harness that latent potential through the regional infrastructure projects we are pursuing—the internal roads we are laying, the Standard Gauge (railway) line we are constructing, the unparalleled investments in energy we are making,” he said.
He called on Israeli entrepreneurs to seek to invest in the country, saying they are not only guaranteed short term gains but long term stable profits.
He pointed out that the country has a wealth of natural resources as well as a young and dynamic population coupled with a strategic geographical location which is an access point to a big market in East Africa.
He said the government was reforming the education sector to “ensure that our education evolves to meet the needs of our local market and the global market of the 21st century.”
“Again, that’s another area where I hope we will learn from Israel,” he added.
He said the phenomenon of Israel’s economic success remained a global inspiration and spoke to many countries including Kenya.
Kenyatta said the two nations were yet to exploit their full extent of economic cooperation, adding Netanyahu’s visit provided a platform to explore numerous and diverse business opportunities.
Addressing the entrepreneurs, Netanyahu urged Israeli entrepreneurs to invest in Kenya.
He said his government had both strategic national and global interests in Kenya’s prosperity and that it would only be prudent for his countrymen to utilize investment opportunities available in the East Africa’s largest economy.
“Come and invest in Kenya—the opportunities are great, there is an inflection point where the economy can take off,” he said.
He added the two governments were ready to reduce any business risks that might arise.
Netanyahu arrived in Nairobi on Monday night for a three-day visit, which is part of his four-nation Africa tour.
Kenya and Israel sign deals on health, immigration to boost ties
NAIROBI (Xinhua) — Kenya and Israel have signed agreements on immigration and health during Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to Kenya.
Speaking after talks with Netanyahu in Nairobi, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said the 50-year relationship between Kenya and Israel was set to be strengthened after the two countries signed more pacts and agreed to work more closely on security issues.
“The agreements will allow us to build the capacity of our health systems and professionals in the area of emergency preparedness and resources as well as specialised medical services,” Kenyatta said during a joint news conference.
Netanyahu arrived in Nairobi on Monday night for a three-day visit as part of his African tour, which has taken him to Uganda.
Kenyatta said the future of Kenya-Israel friendship was bright and would bring more development and improved security for Kenyans.
“Kenya will benefit in terms of training, equipment, technology and strategic intelligence,” he said.
On his part, Netanyahu said Israel viewed Kenya as its best partner in Africa and that the two countries shared common opportunities.
Netanyahu said Israel had been supporting Kenya in fighting terrorism and sharing intelligence information with Kenya.
Kenya has suffered several bloody attacks by Somalia-based Al-Shabaab militants in recent years.
Netanyahu said Israel would work with Kenya to gain itself a foothold in Africa as the continent rises economically.
Netanyahu pushed for Kenya to back Israel’s bid to be granted an observer status at the African Union, for which Kenyatta pledged full support.
During the meeting, Kenyatta also spoke about the peace process between Israel and Palestine, adding Kenya was for sustainable solution.
Kenya tightens security as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits
NAIROBI (Xinhua) — Security has been tightened in the Kenyan capital Nairobi as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu begun a three-day visit Tuesday after arriving from neighbouring Uganda.
Nairobi County Police Commander, Japheth Koome, said security had been beefed up in Nairobi and its environs for the visit of Netanyahu and his delegation of about 50 businessmen.
A police helicopter was intermittently doing rounds over the skies of the capital city.
Netanyahu will hold talks with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and visit some places in Nairobi, thus affecting movement of vehicles.
Police said there would be disruptions of traffic flow in Nairobi following the arrival of Netanyahu and urged motorists to cooperate with traffic officers on the ground.
There was a major traffic snarl-up Tuesday in the city following temporary closure of at least seven roads.
Hundreds of passengers were stranded waiting for commuter buses to come, while some buses capitalized on the disruptions to hike fares.
“We have been here since 6:00 a.m. and there are no vehicles and I don’t know what time I will reach at home.
“Those (buses) that are coming however have hiked their prices,” one of the affected commuters said.
Some motorists, who were caught unawares, said they had been stuck on the road for more than three hours following the blockade.
Kenya and Israel have collaborated on projects such as an ongoing maize irrigation project in the East African nation.
During Netanyahu’s visit, Kenya and Israel are expected to sign or reaffirm cooperation agreements, signifying enhanced partnership between the two nations.
On Monday evening, Kenyatta joined other regional leaders as well as Netanyahu in a summit in Entebbe, Uganda.
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, Rwandan President Paul Kagame, South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir, Zambian President Edgar Lungu, and Tanzanian Foreign Minister Augustine Mahiga attended the summit.
The two-hour meeting focused on ways to scale up cooperation between the African countries and Israel on issues of security and economic development.
A statement issued in Nairobi on Tuesday said the meeting—the first of its kind—emphasized the need for increased regional and international collaboration in all fields to combat terrorism, including cyber security and information gathering.
In a joint declaration issued at the end of the summit, the leaders said terrorism was a major threat to international peace and security.
The regional leaders also agreed on the importance of close cooperation between their governments and Israel to explore new ways of partnership on capacity building and utilization of innovative technologies, particularly those in the renewable energy sector.
Speaking at the summit, Netanyahu underscored the invigorated relationship between Israel and Africa on economic development and security issues.
He singled out the war against terrorism as a major area of partnership, saying teamwork was key to “fighting forces that want to take us back”.
He assured the regional leaders of Israel’s support to Africa’s development.
Israel is ready to share its experience on health, technology, agriculture and water resource management with Africa, he said.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tells Africa Israel is staunch ally
JERUSALEM (Xinhua) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has pledged that Africa has no better ally than Israel in addressing security and development issues, amidst the second day of his visit to Africa.
Netanyahu is on a four-day quest to Africa, seeking to strengthen ties with the continent and finding new allies to counter the increasing Palestinian influence in international bodies like the United Nations.
He is the first ruling Israeli prime minister to visit Africa since the late Yitzhak Rabin visited Morocco in 1994.
On Tuesday, he met with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta for a talk on security, intelligence, cyber, energy, agriculture, and trade, according to a statement by the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office.
Netanyahu said in a joint press conference in Nairobi that both nations must join forces against the “resurfacing of a new form of terrorism.” He added “I think we see eye to eye on the nature of this problem, and I think Africa and Israel overwhelmingly see eye to eye on this.”
Noticing the deadly attacks by extremist groups in Nairobi’s Westgate Mall in 2013 and in the Garissa University in 2015, he stated that terrorism makes Israel and Kenya “natural partners.”
“I know that working together will help us defeat the scourge of this terror even faster. And when I say working together it’s Kenya, Israel and other African countries that have an equal stake in defeating the forces of this radicalism that threatens all our societies,” he said.
Kenyatta said that nations that oppose terror should work together.
“That’s why I strongly believe it’s critical for us reevaluate our relationship,” he said.
Netanyahu said that Kenyatta told him he would assist Israel to restore its status as an observant country at the African Union, an organization comprised of 54 African nations.
“It tallies with our desire to join with African countries, creating a new partnership for security and development,” Netanyahu said.
Netanyahu was the first incumbent Israeli prime minister to visit Kenya.
The two nations had strong ties, but their relations strained in the 1970s amidst pressures by Arab countries and Israel’s strong support of South Africa’s apartheid regime.
Netanyahu’s tour includes visits to Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, and Ethiopia, and meetings with leaders from these countries in addition to South Sudan, Zambia, and Tanzania.
DALLAS – There was a lot of glamour, music and humor at the first-ever African Film Festival in Dallas, Texas, July 1-3. But for filmmakers it was a serious opportunity to show their cinematic products, connect with one another and share their visions …Read more