ООН нагадала про територіальну цілісність України через російські вибори в Криму

Організація Об’єднаних Націй нагадала 19 березня про резолюції своєї Генеральної асамблеї, які підтримують територіальну цілісність України. Про це у зв’язку з організованими Росією виборами в окупованому Криму заявив речник генерального секретаря ООН Стефан Дюжаррік.

«Що стосується ситуації в Криму, Генеральна асамблея неодноразово висловлювалася, зокрема, в контексті резолюції 68/262 «Про територіальну цілісність України» та резолюції 71/205 «Положення про права людини в Автономній Республіці Крим та місті Севастополь», – наголосив Дюжаррік під час прес-брифінгу в штаб-квартирі ООН.

Ці висловлювання представника ООН відзначило й постійне представництво України при ООН.

«У зв’язку з нікчемними виборами в Криму, речник Генерального секретаря ООН нагадав про резолюції Генасамблеї щодо територіальної цілісності України та визнання Росії державою-окупантом», – вказали українські дипломати.

Центральна виборча комісія Росії 19 березня опрацювала майже 100% бюлетенів на виборах президента. За попередніми даними, чинний президент Росії Володимир Путін набирає 76,7% голосів.

65-річний Володимир Путін фактично керує Росією з 31 грудня 1999-го, коли подав у відставку попередній президент Борис Єльцин. У 2008 – 2012 роках президентом був обраний Дмитро Медведєв. Сам Путін не балотувався на виборах через законодавчі обмеження. У цей період він обіймав посаду прем’єр-міністра.

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The Defector says US Should Take Tougher Stance on North Korea

U.S. President Donald Trump has agreed to an unprecedented face-to-face meeting with North Korea’s Leader Kim Jong Un to discuss the country’s nuclear program. But activists say that North Korea’s human rights violations should not take a back seat at the talks. VOA’s Korean service spoke with a North Korean defector who discusses her experiences growing up in North Korea. VOA’s Jesusemen Oni has more.

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El Salvador Debates Best Way to Counter MS-13 Gang Violence

El Salvador, a Central American country, wrestles with one of the region’s biggest challenges: the rise of criminal gangs like MS-13. Gangs test the government’s policies on policing, detention and crime-prevention initiatives. Different camps debate whether to invest more in strong-hand punitive approaches, social interventions or a combination. Cristina Caicedo Smit has the second of three reports about MS-13.

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Senior US Official Embarks on Visit to Taiwan to Reaffirm US Support

A senior U.S. official will head to Taiwan for what State Department officials say is to “reaffirm long-standing U.S. policy toward and support for Taiwan.”

Alex Wong, deputy assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs, is scheduled to visit Taiwan March 20-22 after meetings in Singapore.

While in Taiwan, Wong will deliver remarks at the American Chamber of Commerce’s annual Hsieh Nien Fan dinner, an opportunity for the American business community to meet with Taiwanese officials to facilitate further interaction in the year ahead.

Wong will also hold discussions with Taiwanese officials on a wide range of matters, according to the State Department.

“It makes sense that the Trump administration is willing to strengthen ties with Taiwan. No one should be surprised,” Bonnie Glaser, director of the China Power Project at Center for International and Strategic Studies, told VOA on Monday. “China’s growing political, military, and economic pressure on Taiwan is a threat to Taiwan’s security and harmful to U.S. interests.”

Wong’s visit will come just days after U.S. President Donald Trump signed the Taiwan Travel Act. The legislation encourages unrestricted two-way travel for officials from the United States and Taiwan. It is also seen as a move to facilitate direct official U.S. contacts with the self-ruled island, which were cut in 1979 when Washington switched diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing.

The informal relations between the United States and Taiwan are governed by the Taiwan Relations Act that was passed by Congress in April of 1979.

As part of the deal, the United States imposed unwritten rules, including prohibiting higher-level American officials from meeting with their Taiwan counterparts, and preventing top Taiwan officials from coming to Washington, D.C.

According to the Taiwan Travel Act, relations between the United States and Taiwan “have suffered from a lack of communication due to the self-imposed restrictions that the United States maintains on high-level visits with Taiwan” since the enactment of the Taiwan Relations Act.

While U.S. and Taiwan officials have already been traveling back and forth to meet, the visits were usually kept low profile to avoid diplomatic repercussion.

China reacted angrily to the bill.

Foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said on Saturday: “We urge the US side to correct its mistake, stop pursuing any official ties with Taiwan or improving its current relations with Taiwan in any substantive way.”

The Chinese Embassy issued a statement saying that certain clauses of the legislation “severely violate the one-China principle, the political foundation of the China-US relationship.”

The move is likely to weigh heavily on US-China ties, which are currently under strain after Trump announced new import tariffs on steel and aluminum.

China claims democratically-ruled Taiwan is part of its territory. China’s relationship with Taiwan took a turn for the worse since the 2016 inauguration of Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, who has refused to endorse Beijing’s view that the island belongs to it.

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US States Fight Trump Drill Plan With Local Bans

Some coastal states opposed to President Donald Trump’s plan to allow oil and gas drilling off most of the nation’s coastline are fighting back with proposed state laws designed to thwart the proposal.


The drilling Trump proposes would take place in federal waters offshore in an area called the Outer Continental Shelf. But states control the 3 miles of ocean closest to shore and are proposing laws designed to make it difficult, or impossible, to bring the oil or gas ashore in their areas.


A look at the issue:


What States Are Doing


States including New Jersey, New York, California, South Carolina and Rhode Island have introduced bills prohibiting any infrastructure related to offshore oil or gas production from being built in or crossing their state waters. Washington state is threatening such a bill. Maryland has introduced a bill imposing strict liability on anyone who causes a spill while engaged in offshore drilling or oil or gas extraction.


“We started thinking about how we control the first three miles of ocean, and there are state rights that we have,” said New Jersey state Sen. Jeff Van Drew, a Democrat who represents the state’s southern coast. “Even if we don’t succeed in banning it outright, we can still make it a lot more expensive to do it in this area. It’s a back-door, ingenious way to block this.”


California Democratic state Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson said a ban on pipelines and docks could force the industry to rely on ships that would then have to sail to the waters of a different state to bring their cargo ashore. “What we can do is make drilling for offshore oil and gas so prohibitively expensive that it won’t pencil out,” she said.


Any Precendent?


In 1985, voters in Santa Cruz, California, required that any zoning changes to accommodate onshore facilities for offshore oil exploration or production must be approved by a vote of the electorate, one of 26 similar ordinances that were adopted in California. An oil and gas industry association unsuccessfully sued 13 of the communities, claiming they were interfering with lawful interstate commerce.


Oil Industry, U.S. Response


Andy Radford, a senior policy adviser with the American Petroleum Institute, said it has been 30 years since the last detailed analysis of potential offshore oil and gas supplies. He said states ought to welcome offshore drilling for the revenue it can produce for them. Offshore energy production in the Atlantic Ocean alone could support 265,000 jobs and generate $22 billion a year within 20 years, he said.


“We should take that step forward to advance our energy future,” he said. “Local communities and workers benefit from energy exploration and production, in addition to these investments generating significant state revenues to fund schools, hospitals and other public services.”


Connie Gillette, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, said “the laws, goals, and policies” of a state adjacent to the Outer Continental Shelf are among the factors the federal government must consider in approving oil and gas leases.


Conflicted in South Carolina


In May 2017, eight months before Trump proposed the nearly nationwide expansion of offshore drilling, a South Carolina legislator introduced a bill to prohibit oil drilling infrastructure in state waters. The bill remains in committee.


South Carolina’s House and Senate both introduced a resolution expressing support for drilling off their state’s coast and criticizing Republican Gov. Henry McMaster’s request to be exempted from the plan, saying the request is “tantamount to the state exercising excessive control of South Carolina’s free market.”

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Cuba Opens Wholesale Market to Sell Basic Staples

Cuba has opened up its first wholesale market in an economy dominated by government-run enterprises.


State-run newspaper Granma says the market is part of an ongoing effort to “reorganize” commerce on the communist island. The market will sell beans, beer, sugar, cigars and other basic staples for 20 to 30 percent less than the products are sold throughout the country.


Since 2010, the government has authorized about 500,000 people to operate private businesses, and many of them have long-sought access to a wholesale marketplace. Their wait is not over. The government says the market known as the Mercabal is only open to 35 worker-owned cooperatives in Havana, at least for now.


The state-run economy accounts for 70 to 80 percent of the Cuban economy.

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New York Councilman Investigating Kushner Real Estate Company

A New York City councilman and a tenants’ rights group said they will investigate allegations that the real estate company formerly controlled by Jared Kushner, a presidential adviser and President Donald Trump’s son-in-law, falsified building permits.

In allegations first uncovered by The Associated Press, the Kushner Companies is accused of submitting false statements between 2013 and 2016, stating it had no rent-controlled apartments in buildings it owned when it actually had hundreds.

Rent-controlled apartments come under tighter oversight from city officials when there is construction work or renovations in buildings. 

The councilman and tenants’ rights group charged the Kushner Companies of lying about rent-control in order to harass and force out tenants paying low rents so it can move in those who would pay more.

They also blame city officials for allegedly being unaware what Kushner was up to.

Rent control is a fixture in many big U.S. cities, where the government regulates rent to help make housing more affordable.

Some tenants in Kushner-owned buildings told the AP that the landlord made their lives a “living hell,” with loud construction noise, drilling, dust and leaking water. They said they believe they were part of a campaign of targeted harassment by the Kushner Companies to get them to leave.

The company denies intentionally falsifying documents in an effort to harass tenants. In a news release Monday, the company called the investigation an effort to “create an issue where none exists.”

“If mistakes or typographical errors are identified, corrective action is taken immediately with no financial benefit to the company,” it said.

The company also said it contracted out the preparation of such documents to a third party and that the faulty paperwork was amended. 

Kushner stepped down as head of his family’s company before becoming presidential adviser. But the AP said he still has a financial stake in a number of properties.

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Уряд пропонує внести зміни до закону про запобігання корупції

Кабінет міністрів України пропонує внести зміни до закону про запобігання корупції. 

Законопроект №8158 зареєстрований на сайті Верховної Ради. 

 Як йдеться у пояснювальній записці, з метою залучення до організації управління держпідприємствами європейських фахівців законопроектом пропонується виключити іноземців нерезидентів, які претендують на посади керівника і заступника керівника, голови та члена наглядової ради деяких юридичних осіб, із числа осіб, на яких поширюються вимоги закону про протидію корупції.

Документом пропонується уточнити, що закон поширюється на керівників та заступників керівників, голову та членів наглядової ради (крім іноземців нерезидентів), виконавчого органу, одноосібний виконавчий орган юридичних осіб, державна частка у статутному капіталі яких перевищує п’ятдесят відсотків, а також осіб, які входять до складу наглядової ради держорганізації, що має на меті одержання прибутку.

Нині відповідний пункт статті 3, яку пропонують змінити, передбачає, що закон про запобігання корупції поширюється на посадових осіб юридичних осіб публічного права, осіб, які входять до складу наглядової ради державного банку, державного підприємства або державної організації, що має на меті одержання прибутку.

Закон про запобігання корупції, серед іншого, встановлює обов’язок подання е-декларацій для певних категорій осіб.

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