Obama eases curbs on Cuba travel Robert Gibbs said the measures would allow Cubans to enjoy 'basic human rights' US President Barack Obama has approved measures that will allow Cuban Americans to travel more freely to Cuba, his spokesman has said. Cuban-Americans will also be allowed to send more money to relatives in Cuba. The move, announced by White House spokesman Robert Gibbs, comes after Mr Obama last month signed a spending bill easing some economic sanctions on Cuba. Mr Gibbs said the aim was to promote democracy and human rights on the Caribbean island. "The president has directed the secretaries of state, treasury and commerce to carry out the actions necessary to lift all restrictions on the ability of individuals to visit family members in Cuba and to send them remittances," said Mr Gibbs. The changes fulfilled a pledge made by Mr Obama during his presidential campaign and would help bridge the gap between divided Cuban families, he added. The US had imposed a commercial blockade on Cuba since the Communist revolution that brought Fidel Castro to power in 1959. Regional summit Restrictions would also be lifted on US telecommunications companies applying for licences to operate in Cuba, Mr Gibbs added.
Cuban-Americans are eager to help their families in Cuba That move could open the way for a greater flow of information to the island via the internet, says the BBC's Kevin Connolly in Washington, although much will depend on the attitude of the Cuban government itself. "The president would like to see greater freedom for the Cuban people," said Mr Gibbs. "There are actions that he can and has taken today to open up the flow of information to provide some important steps to help that." The move comes as Mr Obama prepares for a summit with regional leaders in Trinidad later this week. The US president has indicated he would be open to dialogue with Cuba's leaders. But he has said that, like previous American presidents, he will only consider a full lifting of the US embargo once Cuba's communist government makes significant moves such as the holding of democratic elections. Cuba's President Raul Castro has said he is prepared to negotiate with the new US administration, providing there are no preconditions. President Obama clearly believes that engagement may yet achieve what the half-century embargo never did, says our correspondent: real political change in Cuba. But there is no talk for the moment of opening diplomatic relations or of lifting the general trade embargo, he adds
I WAIT ONLY THE DAY THAT GOD TAKE WITH HIM FIDEL CASTRO AND THIS CAUNTRY CAN TO BE FREEE...WONDERFUL CLIMATE...WONDERFUL GIRLS...CUBA IS A DREAM
Ms Saberi has been in Iran for six years, working and doing research An Iranian-American journalist accused of spying in Iran went on trial this week and a verdict is expected soon, an Iranian official has said. "The first trial meeting on Roxana Saberi was held yesterday [Monday]," judiciary spokesman Ali Jamshidi told a news conference in Tehran. "I think the verdict will be announced soon, perhaps in the next two or three weeks," the official added. Ms Saberi, 31, is being held in Evin prison near Tehran. She worked briefly for the BBC three years ago. She has also worked for the American public radio network NPR and the TV network Fox News. She has been in custody in Tehran since late January. 'Baseless' Ms Saberi originally faced the less serious accusations of buying alcohol, then working as a journalist without a valid press card, but last week Iranian prosecutors accused her of spying for the US. ROXANA SABERI Raised in Fargo, North Dakota, by Iranian father and Japanese mother Wins state beauty pageant before studying at Northwestern University in Chicago, and Cambridge University in the UK 2003: arrives in Iran as a freelance reporter for BBC and Fox News among others 2006: Iran authorities revoke her press credentials January 2009: arrested in Tehran for buying wine April 2009: tried for espionage The Justice Ministry said she is being tried in a closed hearing of Iran's revolutionary court, which handles national security cases. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has demanded her release. Mr Jamshidi criticised the US state department for saying the accusations against Ms Saberi were "baseless". "That a government expresses an opinion without seeing the indictment is laughable," he said. No more details of the case have been released, and Ms Saberi's lawyer says he has been told not to speak to the media. A US-Iranian national, Ms Saberi has spent six years in Iran studying and writing a book. Her parents arrived in Tehran earlier this month and were allowed to see her for 20 minutes. According to her lawyer, they found her in good health and good spirits.
Pyongyang says it launched a communications satellite on 5 April North Korea has vowed to walk out on international talks to end its nuclear programme, and said it would restore its disabled nuclear reactor. The unusually strong statement follows criticism by the UN Security Council of its recent rocket launch, which critics say was a long-range missile test. North Korea says its launch was part of a peaceful space programme, designed to put a satellite into orbit. China and Russia have appealed for the North to return to negotiations. China, Pyongyang's closest ally, called for "calm and restraint" from all sides. A Foreign Ministry statement said that Beijing hoped "all sides will... continue to advance and push forward the six-party talks and the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula". Moscow expressed regret at the North's decision, while Japan said it "strongly urges" Pyongyang to return to the negotiating table. Last week, Japan renewed unilateral economic sanctions against North Korea for another year because of its rocket launch. 'Unbearable insult' The six-party talks, involving North and South Korea, China, Japan, Russia and the US, have seen many setbacks since they began more than five years ago. NUCLEAR CRISIS Feb 2007 - North Korea agrees to close its main nuclear reactor in exchange for fuel aid June 2007 - North Korea shuts its main Yongbyon reactor June 2008 - North Korea makes its long-awaited declaration of nuclear assets Oct 2008 - The US removes North Korea from its list of countries which sponsor terrorism Dec 2008 - Pyongyang slows work to dismantle its nuclear programme after a US decision to suspend energy aid Jan 2009 - The North says it is scrapping all military and political deals with the South, accusing it of "hostile intent" 5 April 2009 - Pyongyang launches a rocket carrying what it says is a communications satellite 14 April 2009 - After criticism of the launch from the UN Security Council, North Korea vows to walk out of six-party talks Engage, appease, oppose? N Korea a problem for Obama Timeline: North Korea North Korea now says it is walking out for good, after describing the UN action as an "unbearable insult". The North Korean Foreign Ministry said the UN statement - condemning its rocket launch and tightening existing sanctions - infringed its sovereignty and "severely debases" its people. The ministry said it would "strengthen its nuclear deterrent for its defence by all means". The North also said that it would restore its partially disabled Yongbyon nuclear reactor - the fuel source for its 2006 atomic test. Pyongyang partially dismantled the plant in 2008, as part of an international agreement which guaranteed it aid and diplomatic concessions in exchange for disabling its nuclear facilities. The BBC's diplomatic correspondent Jonathan Marcus says this latest instalment of the North Korean drama has been seen by many analysts as a predictable attempt by Pyongyang to gain the attention of the new US administration. How far the North Koreans are really willing to go in unpicking the current deal is not clear, he says. With growing uncertainty about the internal political dynamics in Pyongyang, and a much tougher sounding leadership in South Korea, it may not be easy to get these talks back on track, our correspondent says. International condemnation Pyongyang's defiant response came shortly after the 15-member Security Council unanimously condemned the long-range rocket launch on 5 April. The council also ordered the UN Sanctions Committee to begin enforcing both financial sanctions and an existing arms embargo imposed after the 2006 tests. There had been hope that the unified statement could pave the way for a return to the talks, which have stalled over the inability to verify the shutdown of Yongbyon. North Korea had previously threatened that any criticism of the rocket launch would cause it to walk away from the negotiating table.
THE ITALIAN SAILORS ARE YET HOSTAGE BY PIRATES THE ITALIAN NAVY HAS TO TAKE EXAMPLE FROM THE US NAVY...CANNON SHOT THE PIRATES....ANY DEAL WITH THE TERRORIST ANYWAY I'M HAPPY FOR MR PHILIP Somali Pirates Hold American Captain Hostage SHARE High drama unfolded on the high seas today as a cargo ship with a crew of 20 Americans sailing off the coast of Somalia was hijacked by a group of armed pirates. Even after the unarmed sailors overpowered the Somali pirates and reclaimed control of their vessel, pirates managed to take the ship's captain hostage. Somali pirates hijack an American ship and take the captain hostage.The destroyer U.S.S. Bainbridge has arrived on the scene of the cargo ship, a defense official tells ABC News. The Navy warship came equipped with a seahawk helicopter and small boats to send boarding parties. A spokesman from the ship company Maersk, which owns the hijacked vessel, say they've had contact with the ship's crew and they're tired, but safe. The crew was in contact with the pirates, but officials were waiting to determine how to proceed with the negotiations at daybreak. The pirate mother ship also is in the vicinity, a defense official said. A crew member told CNN this afternoon that Capt. Richard Phillips was on the ship's lifeboat with negotiations ongoing. He said the crew tried to exchange the captain for a captive pirate, but apparently the pirates reneged on the deal. With Phillips held hostage, 34-year-old Shane Murphy, the ship's chief officer, is in charge, his wife Serena Murphy told ABC News today. "He's very tough, he's very take-charge," she said. "I have 100 percent confidence in him. He's quite a man." Serena Murphy received a call from her husband this afternoon, at which point he said, "I'm alive. I'm safe. I love you," Serena recalled. RelatedHow to Fend Off a Somali Pirate AttackWATCH: U.S. Crew Re-Captures Ship From PiratesWATCH: Capt. Shane Murphy on Pirate Threat"He said, 'I'm negotiating for the safe return of the captain," Serena told ABC News. "It's going to be a little hectic for the next two to three hours." Serena was holding her 8-month-old son, Jason, in her arm in the front yard of the couple's Seekonk, Mass., home when the call came, she said. They also have a 3-year-old son, Dylan. The crew turned the tables on the pirates who hijacked their ship after a high seas chase. Once overpowered by the crew, the pirates tried to board their skiff, but the motor wasn't working, a Defense Department official told ABC News. The pirates are now in one of the ship's lifeboats with the ship's captain in their custody. The Defense official added that there are no pirates on board the ship. In an interview last month, Murphy talked about the danger faced by cargo ships from pirates.
"All the vessels transiting the areas are on heightened watch capabilities. Everyone is prepared. They are putting up as much of a defense as they can," he said. "There is no telling when or where the attacks are going to happen and the amount of vessels that transit the area, it is impossible to patrol them all. ... The difference with the Somali pirates is they are more just armed thugs or bandits and they are ruled by the law of the gun in that country now." Secretary of State Hillary Clinton expressed concern for the safety of the crew. "We're deeply concerned. We're following it very closely," Clinton said at a meeting at the State Department. "More specifically, we are now focused on this particular act of piracy and the seizure of the ship that carries 21 American citizens. More generally, we think the world must come together to end the scourge of piracy." President Obama, who first learned of the hijacking situation shortly after returning to the United States Tuesday night, emphasized his extreme concern for the security of the crew, according to a senior administration official. At the State Department this afternoon, acting spokesman Robert Wood said the situation was "fluid at the moment," adding, "I'm seeing contradictory reports." Wood added that he could not confirm reports of a U.S. diplomat on board the ship.
Well this Easter days i have work on my last field demography…i haven’t been in vacation unfortunately only the night after the 10:00 pm i have put the beak outside of my door for as drink…or a coffee but for the rest…demography has been my only thought with the cooperation of the rain I have choice to stay to work we have been with the rain together one high degree 22°…nothing to worst of this anyway we have call every relatives in gerroa (new south Wales au ) where this days there is my cousin renato from London for found the parents (my uncle “zio” Salvatore, my aunt “zia” Olga) and introduce them his new girlfriend that she has origin Italian too.. we have call the relatives from roma, napoli, catania, palermo etc etc for the easter wishes …a vacation hot and wet, very good…but is not enough a little rain for to prevent me to go after dinner to do 4 steps for drink something to the bar…I go every night…after a day of work I deserve 1 minute of relax…..