Thousands strike for wage increases in South Africa | Business and Economy News

Commerce unions representing some 800,000 public servants demand pay rises amid rising value of dwelling.

1000’s of public sector employees in South Africa have launched into a nationwide strike demanding higher wages.

Tuesday’s “Nationwide Day of Motion” comes after wage negotiations between commerce unions and the federal government collapsed; the federal government supplied a 3 p.c pay hike, however unions are demanding 10 p.c amid rising inflation.

The dispute between the federal government and its staff piles strain on President Cyril Ramaphosa, as he seeks re-election as chief of the ruling African Nationwide Congress (ANC) get together.

Seven unions – representing about 800,000 public servants, together with these working in hospitals, faculties and police stations – are marching in eight of the nation’s provinces. Final week, members promised to stage picket strains and demonstrations outdoors hospitals, ports and authorities workplaces in a “present of drive”.

“With the quickly elevated value of dwelling … the federal government needs public servants to be at peace with lower than inflation will increase. This can’t stand,” the unions mentioned in a joint assertion final week.

Inflation in South Africa was at 7.5 p.c in September, down from a peak of seven.8 p.c in July.

Earlier this month, labour minister Thulas Nxesi mentioned the federal government would unilaterally implement a 3 p.c enhance throughout the board – a suggestion dismissed by employees’ representatives as “paltry”.

Final week, in an try to avert the strike, the federal government made a remaining provide of an efficient 7.5 p.c wage enhance – comprising 3 p.c pensionable and 4.5 p.c non-pensionable funds. However in a joint assertion on November 18, the unions known as the information of the provide “deceptive”.

Finance minister Enoch Godongwana mentioned throughout his October mini-budget speech that the federal government might solely afford a mean wage enhance of three.3 p.c.

Talking to native channel eNCA information at a march in Pretoria on Tuesday, December Mavuso, the deputy secretary basic for the Nationwide Training Well being and Allied Employees Union (Nehawu), mentioned the unions are open to negotiating “so long as employees obtain inflation-related enhance in order that the worth of their pay packets will not be eroded by inflation”.

“Three p.c is admittedly subsequent to nothing, in order that’s why we wish an enchancment to the provide and the federal government should come again to the negotiations in order that we settle this dispute correctly,” Mavuso added.

He additionally mentioned the unions don’t consider the federal government can’t afford the will increase. “There’s cash, we don’t consider that there isn’t a cash. However the neoliberal programme of austerity that’s applied by authorities is creating issues.”

The strikes happen on the eve of the governing ANC’s elective convention subsequent month. Ramaphosa, who additionally faces accusations he tried to cowl up a multimillion-dollar money theft at his farmhouse, seeks a second time period on the helm of the ANC.

Thousands join anti-Rwanda protests in DR Congo’s Goma | Armed Groups News

Protesters denounce Rwanda’s alleged help for the M23 rebels, who’ve made advances within the countryside round Goma.

1000’s have protested within the jap Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) metropolis of Goma, denouncing Rwanda’s alleged help of M23 rebels, as Kinshasa recalled its interim performing ambassador from Kigali in an additional souring of relations.

The protests on Monday come as M23 have tightened their grip on the encircling countryside.

“We denounce the hypocrisy of the worldwide neighborhood within the face of Rwanda’s aggression,” Mambo Kawaya, a civil society consultant attending the demonstration, instructed AFP information company.

A largely Congolese Tutsi group, the M23 resumed combating in late 2021 after mendacity dormant for years, accusing the Congolese authorities of failing to honour an settlement to combine its fighters into the military.

The group’s resurgence has destabilised regional relations in central Africa, with the DRC accusing its smaller neighbour Rwanda of backing the insurgent group.

The entrance line between the Congolese navy and the M23 had been calm for a number of weeks, however recent clashes from October 20 noticed the insurgent group make advances throughout North Kivu province.

Rebels in latest days seized the cities of Kiwanja and Rutshuru, alongside a strategic freeway resulting in the provincial capital Goma, which lies on the Rwandan border.

On Sunday, the DRC’s authorities ordered the Rwandan ambassador, Vincent Karega, to depart the nation inside 48 hours. Rwanda said that it had famous the choice “with remorse”.

The DRC’s international ministry has recalled the interim cost d’affaires from Kigali and ordered its newly-appointed ambassador to Rwanda to not register his credentials, it mentioned in an announcement on Monday.

DR Congo anti-Rwanda rally
Regardless of official denials from Kigali, an unpublished report for the United Nations seen by AFP in August pointed to Rwandan involvement with the M23 [Arlette Bashizi/Reuters]

On Sunday, Rwanda accused the DRC of escalating tensions between the 2 nations and mentioned its forces alongside the border “stay on alert”.

The insurgent group first leapt to prominence in 2012 when it briefly captured Goma earlier than a joint Congolese-United Nations offensive drove it out.

It’s one in all scores of armed teams that roam jap DRC, a lot of them a legacy of two regional wars that flared late final century.

Regardless of official denials from Kigali, an unpublished report for the United Nations seen by AFP in August pointed to Rwandan involvement with the M23.

The identical report mentioned the M23 plans to seize Goma, an necessary commerce hub of about a million folks, to extract political concessions from the DRC’s authorities.

Rwandan President Paul Kagame tweeted on Monday that he had held a dialogue with UN chief Antonio Guterres on the best way to de-escalate the tensions.

Thousands evacuated as wildfires spread across western US | Climate Crisis News

Large Oregon blaze threatens greater than 2,000 properties as drought, excessive warmth spark fires throughout western United States.

Hundreds of individuals have been evacuated from their properties within the US state of Oregon, as an enormous wildfire shoots clouds of ash and smoke into the air and threatens complete cities.

The Creek Hearth is the most recent to hit the western United States, the place dozens of blazes in California, Idaho, Oregon and Washington state have scorched greater than 3,100sq km (1,200sq miles) to date this summer time.

About 1,200 firefighters and different personnel are working to place out the hearth east of Eugene, Oregon, based on the Nationwide Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG).

The Creek Hearth has grown to greater than 35,000 hectares (86,734 acres) – roughly twice the dimensions of Washington, DC – and it was zero p.c contained as of Monday.

Steep terrain has difficult efforts to include the blaze, and evacuations have been ordered for Lane and Deschutes counties. Authorities say greater than 2,000 properties are in danger.

“They’ve been establishing firelines away from the lively fireplace edge, alongside roads and trails, the place they’ve a greater probability of efficiently stopping the hearth,” NWCG mentioned.

Excessive warmth and withering drought have helped create a extremely flamable threat of fireside within the western US, which consultants say has been worsened by local weather change.

In Oregon, even for these circuitously threatened by the flames, the hearth has made its presence felt: smoke has enveloped the area, creating poor air high quality and well being dangers.

In response to NWCG, “smoke has created unhealthy air high quality for communities east of the hearth as effectively, together with Bend”, a city identified for entry to out of doors tourism.

“Get out of right here as quick as I can,” Herman Schimmel, who moved to the small city of Westfir solely not too long ago, advised The Oregonian newspaper. “That’s all I used to be fascinated about.”

Air high quality alerts have been issued in Oregon, Washington state and Idaho attributable to wildfire smoke.

In the meantime, the Nationwide Interagency Hearth Heart reported that greater than 90 fires are at present burning throughout seven states within the west: California, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.

The Double Creek fireplace in a extra distant space of Oregon has consumed almost 63,000 hectares (155,000 acres) and is about 15 p.c contained.

In California, a scorching heatwave final week strained the state’s energy grid and contributed to fires all through the state.

The biggest blaze proper now could be the Mosquito Hearth within the Sierra Nevada Mountains, which has unfold to greater than 19,000 hectares (47,000 acres) and is 10 p.c contained, based on the state fireplace company Cal Hearth.

Cal Hearth has mentioned that cooler temperatures have helped firefighters, however robust winds proceed to drive the hearth and threaten a whole lot of properties. Greater than 11,000 individuals have been underneath evacuation orders, and almost 6,000 buildings are in danger from the hearth.

South of Los Angeles, the Fairview Hearth is greater than 50 p.c contained after claiming two lives.

Whereas cooler temperatures adopted the California heatwave, thunderstorms have created the chance of flash floods. Greater than 50 individuals have been evacuated following a mudslide north of Los Angeles on Sunday.

Fresh floods hit Bangladesh, hundreds of thousands left stranded | Climate News

Flood state of affairs prone to deteriorate over the following 24 hours in worst-hit areas of north and northeast, officers stated.

Heavy monsoon downpours in Bangladesh’s northeastern and northern areas have stranded tons of of 1000’s of individuals, forcing authorities to deploy the army to conduct evacuation and aid work, in response to native media and official statements.

The Bangladesh army’s Inter Service Public Relations workplace stated on its web site early on Saturday that troopers have been deployed as floods have devastated the northeastern districts of Sunamganj and Sylhet the place 1000’s of properties have been inundated and electrical energy has been lower.

In a press release, the federal government’s Flood Forecasting and Warning Middle in Dhaka, the nation’s capital, stated on Friday that water in all main rivers throughout the nation is rising. The nation has about 130 rivers.

The centre stated the flood state of affairs is prone to deteriorate over the following 24 hours within the worst-hit Sunamganj and Sylhet districts within the northeastern area in addition to in Lalmonirhat, Kurigram, Nilphamari and Rangpur districts in northern Bangladesh.

Hafiz Ahmed, supervisor on the Osmani Worldwide Airport in Sylhet, stated that flight operations within the airport have been suspended for 3 days from Friday as flood water had nearly reached the runway.

Final month, a pre-monsoon flash flood, triggered by an onrush of waters from upstream India’s northeastern states, hit Bangladesh’s northern and northeastern areas, destroying crops and damaging properties and highway community.

Bangladesh was solely recovering from that shock, when this yr’s monsoon set in just a few days in the past bringing contemporary rains which have flooded the identical areas once more.

A nation of 160 million individuals, Bangladesh is low-lying and faces threats of climate-change-related pure disasters akin to floods and cyclones. In keeping with the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Local weather Change, about 17 % of individuals in Bangladesh would have to be relocated over the following decade or so if international warming persists at the moment price.

Thousands expected at Shireen Abu Akleh’s funeral in Jerusalem | Israel-Palestine conflict News

The Al Jazeera reporter’s physique was taken from Ramallah to Jerusalem on Thursday, after she was killed by Israeli forces.

Occupied East Jerusalem – The funeral of Shireen Abu Akleh, the Al Jazeera journalist who was killed by Israeli forces on Wednesday whereas reporting within the occupied West Financial institution, is ready to happen in her hometown of Jerusalem.

Friday’s funeral is anticipated to start with a procession from the St Louis French Hospital in occupied East Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood, the place Abu Akleh’s physique remained in a single day, to the Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem’s Previous Metropolis, the place a funeral service might be held within the afternoon on the Cathedral of the Annunciation of the Virgin.

Abu Akleh, who died on the age of 51, will then be buried subsequent to her dad and mom on the close by Mount Zion Protestant Cemetery.

Hundreds are anticipated to end up for the funeral of the veteran reporter, whose loss of life has sparked outrage amongst Palestinians, elevating fears of a rise in tensions in Jerusalem, after weeks of Israeli military raids on the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, which have injured lots of of Palestinians.

Israeli police raided Abu Akleh’s household residence on Thursday, forcibly eradicating the Palestinian flag from the residence.

Anton Abu Akleh, Shireen’s brother, was additionally summoned by Israeli police on Thursday night.

In line with Israeli media experiences, police warned him that they’d disperse the funeral proceedings if there was an ‘escalation’.

Abu Akleh’s killing has despatched shockwaves all through Palestine and the Arab world.

A veteran journalist for Al Jazeera’s Arabic language tv station, Abu Akleh joined the community in 1997, solely a yr after its launch.

Her loss of life has led to an outpouring of emotion throughout the occupied West Financial institution and Gaza. The reporter was honoured in a number of Palestinian cities from Jenin within the northern West Financial institution, the place she was killed, to Jerusalem, in a prolonged procession.

Al Jazeera’s Palestine bureau chief, Walid al-Omari, described Abu Akleh’s three-day funeral procession as “one of many longest in Palestinian historical past”.

Marches had been held for Abu Akleh in Jenin on Wednesday, and in Nablus, the place docs carried out an post-mortem on her physique.

Her physique was then delivered to Ramallah, the place a memorial service was held for her on the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) presidential compound in Ramallah on Thursday, with hundreds in attendance.

PA President Mahmoud Abbas spoke on the service, rejecting a possible Israeli investigation into her loss of life, and saying that the Palestinians would take the case to the Worldwide Court docket of Justice.

Individually on Friday, Israeli forces carried out a raid within the metropolis of Jenin, with a number of Palestinians reported wounded because of reside ammunition.

Abu Akleh had been frequenting Jenin as a part of her work to cowl an ongoing Israeli marketing campaign to suppress rising Palestinian armed resistance within the metropolis’s refugee camp.

Ukraine civilian deaths ‘thousands higher’ than official toll: UN | Russia-Ukraine war News

A excessive variety of casualties and extent of destruction recommend Russian forces attacking indiscriminately, the UN group stories.

Hundreds extra civilians have been killed in Ukraine within the warfare there, which has been happening for greater than two months, than the official United Nations demise toll of three,381, the pinnacle of the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission within the nation has mentioned.

“Total, to this point, we’ve corroborated 7,061 civilian casualties, with 3,381 killed and three,680 injured throughout the nation because the starting of the armed assault by the Russian Federation. The precise figures are increased and we’re working to corroborate each single incident,” Matilda Bogner advised a information briefing in Geneva on Tuesday.

“Now we have been engaged on estimates, however all I can say for now could be that it’s hundreds increased than the numbers we’ve presently given to you,” she mentioned.

The UN group in Ukraine comprising 55 displays has mentioned many of the deaths occurred from the usage of explosive weapons with a large affect space resembling missile and air assaults.

The excessive variety of civilian casualties and the extent of destruction and injury to civilian objects recommend that the Russians are attacking indiscriminately and disproportionately, the UN group discovered.

Moscow denies targeting civilians and calls its invasion, launched on February 24, a “particular navy operation” to disarm Ukraine and “denazify” it and rid it of what it calls anti-Russian nationalists fomented by the West. Ukraine and its allies say these are baseless claims that Russian makes use of to justify its full-scale invasion.

The group recorded a whole bunch of academic and medical services destroyed or broken throughout the nation, in addition to at the very least 50 Christian, Jewish and Muslim locations of worship of various denominations, half of which the UN mentioned have sustained extreme injury and can’t be used.

Curtailed entry to well being services and medical care has led to a rise in mortality charges, particularly as a result of it was usually too harmful for folks to go away their houses or shelters.

“In Yahidne village, we had been advised about 10 older individuals who died within the faculty basement after spending days or in some instances even weeks unable to go away,” Bogner mentioned.

Bogner mentioned her group was additionally investigating what she described as allegations of rape, together with gang rape, tried rape, pressured nudity, threats of sexual violence towards civilian girls and ladies, males and boys. Ladies and ladies are probably the most continuously cited victims, she mentioned.

“Throughout my latest go to to cities north of Kyiv, we documented quite a lot of instances of sexual violence. In a single city that we visited a girl was raped and killed allegedly by a Russian soldier.  The identical soldier then tried to rape her neighbour. This lady’s husband intervened, however was then shot by the soldier. He later died.”

Bogner spoke of instances of pressured enforcement by Russian troops, who detained civilians, principally younger males, and transferred them to Belarus after which Russia, the place they’ve been held in pre-trial detention centres.

“Total, since 24 February, we’ve documented 204 instances of enforced disappearance [169 men, 34 women, one boy], the overwhelming majority of them by Russian armed forces and affiliated armed teams,” she mentioned.

Bogner additionally spoke of “credible allegations” of torture, ill-treatment and executions by Ukrainian forces towards the Russian invading forces and affiliated armed teams.

“By way of the extent of violations by Ukrainian forces, whereas the size is considerably increased on the aspect of allegations towards Russian forces, we’re additionally documenting violations by Ukrainian forces,” she mentioned.