Headlines for Wednesday, December 05, 2012
- Year: ÿþ2
- Length: 5:35 minutes (2.56 MB)
- Format: MP3 Mono 22kHz 64Kbps (CBR)
Los Angeles port strike ends with deal
Four hundred fifty Port of Los Angeles and Long Beach clerical workers went back to work today after an eight-day strike. Thousands of longshore workers had joined them in solidarity, bringing shipping operations to a standstill at the nation's largest cargo terminal. FSRN’s Chris Bennett reports.
The International Longshore and Warehouse Workers Local 63 and port management reached an agreement two hours after federal negotiators arrived to help mediate the conflict Tuesday. Terms of the accord are not yet public and still subject to approval by the union. The clerical workers had demanded that their jobs remain in Southern California and that management cease the practice of outsourcing middle-class jobs to low-wage states and countries. The Ports denied they were doing this. But Union spokesman Craig Merrilees said the issue of job outsourcing had been resolved. After deal was announced, LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa told Reuters, "The employers are not going to outsource." At least eighteen freight ships diverted their cargo during the strike to other ports in Mexico, Panama, and Northern California. Chris Bennett, FSRN, Los Angeles.
Iowa students protest closing of Center for Human Rights
Students are rallying on the campus of the University of Iowa today. The action in Iowa City is to protest the imminent closure of the University's Human Rights Center. From KRUU in Iowa, James Moore reports for FSRN.
The University of Iowa Center for Human Rights says it aims to promote and protect human rights through research, education and public service. Administration decided to shut down the UI Center last summer due to budgetary concerns, and issued termination notices to its staff. Student on campus are now organizing to keep it open. Amy Weissman is Associate Director of the Center.
"Of course, very heartened by the incredible support that students have demonstrated and really rallied to articulate the value of human rights education on our campus. This work of the Center is central to the university's mission and it reflects its values. And I think it's worth a relatively small financial commitment on the part of the university to keep it operating and to keep opportunities for students alive that otherwise will disappear."
More than 2,000 signatures have been gathered on a petition appealing to the administration to reverse its decision.
"This is heading in the opposite direction of every other Big 10 school and other universities that the University of Iowa likes to compare itself to. I mean, this is not the way higher education is going, so they have some kind of blinders on, so helpfully this will help to take them off."
Supporters of the Center are drawing inspiration from a student and faculty mobilization in 1999. There, the administration tried to close the school’s International Writing Program, but changed their minds after a public outcry. James Moore, FSRN, Fairfield, Iowa.
Morsi supporters add chaos to opposition protests
Supporters of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi clashed with protesters who oppose a new draft constitution and rules limiting the courts’ power over the executive branch. The confrontations happened outside the Presidential Palace, where yesterday tens of thousands gathered in a massive demonstration, reportedly the largest since those that brought down the former government. Reuters reports Islamists took down the tents of Morsi’s opponents, who had launched a sit-in. The opposition is comprised of a wide array of leftist and moderate groups who oppose the shift to the right they say is encoded in the proposed constitution. A referendum is planned for December 15th.
NATO approves PATRIOT missiles on Turkey’s border with Syria
The NATO military alliance has approved Turkey's request to install PATRIOT surface-to-air missiles along the Syrian border. FSRN's Jacob Resneck reports.
Turkey's foreign ministry has applauded the NATO’s green light of Turkey's request for German, Dutch and American anti-aircraft missile batteries on its border. The move has sparked speculation of a shift towards a broader military intervention in Syria. But NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen told reporters in Brussels today that's not the case.
“These deployments will be of purely defensive nature. We have no offensive intentions. It's not a preparation of a No-Fly Zone. So our position remains the same.”
But Rasmussen echoed recent comments by President Barack Obama that Syria's chemical weapons remain a concern.
“And yesterday, NATO Foreign Ministers expressed their grave concerns. And, of course, you could also consider that a timely warning to the Syrian regime that they shouldn't even think of using such chemical weapons.”
Turkey made its request after a recent spate of cross-border attacks by Syria targeting fleeing rebels and fears about the country’s missile arsenal. The PATRIOT missiles are expected to be installed at the beginning of next year. Jacob Resneck. FSRN.
Rescuers struggle to access typhoon-damaged villages
The death toll from a powerful typhoon in the Philippines has topped 270. Rescue workers struggled to search for hundreds of missing people mainly on the southern island of Mindanao. Officials have told international media that it’s not uncommon for entire families to have been killed. Landslides and flooding are being blamed for most of the damage and deaths. Rescuers still haven’t reached some of the more remote villages in the disaster zone.