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Archive for March 2010

Qatar hosts meeting of parties to Endangered Species Convention

March 13, 2010 - DOHA

The 15th meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species brings together experts from participating countries to consider proposals for tighter trade controls on Atlantic bluefin tuna, polar bears, sharks, corals and elephant ivory. CITES meets every three years to change trade rules through amendments to the CITES Appendices. Controversially, Monaco wants the large tunas on Appendix 1, the category that prevents all commercial international trade in the species.

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Ministers of Organization of the Islamic Conference meet about Darfur aid

March 12, 2010 - CAIRO

Ministers of the 57-nation Organization of the Islamic Conference meet in Egypt for an International Donors Conference for the Development and Reconstruction of Darfur. The International Criminal Court at The Hague appears to have backed away from its efforts to see Sudanese President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir behind bars for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in the Sudanese province of Darfur, possibly as a result of the OIC’s opposition to the ICC arrest warrant for Al-Bashir.

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Kenya hosts ICANN meeting

March 7, 2010 - NAIROBI

The recent approval of the use of non-Latin-character domain names eased one long-standing source of tension in the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, but it introduces technical issues that will need to be aired at the Nairobi ICANN meeting. The introduction of the new characters introduces the biggest technical change to ICANN since it was launched 40 years ago. The change comes a month after the United States released sole oversight of ICANN.

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Iraq due to hold vital post-war parliamentary election

March 7, 2010 - IRAQ

Iraq has set a January date for an election for the country’s 275-seat unicameral Council of Representatives, but in December postponed it to March. Whenever the election happens, the potential for violence and boycotts is high. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s Da’wa al-Islamiya Party and its allies made big gains in recent local elections, and is expected to do well again in this second post-Saddam legislative election. The new parliament will elect a prime minister and cabinet.

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Hollywood hosts 82nd Academy Awards

March 7, 2010 - UNITED STATES

The 82nd Academy Awards ceremony will be held at a later date than usual in 2010, one of two changes for the 82nd Oscars by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The second change is described as the most radical revision of the Oscar-night ritual in recent memory. Aimed at winning back audiences for the live broadcast of the ceremony, it expands the pool of Best Picture nominees from five to 10. A change of format helped improve viewer numbers for the 81st Awards, after record low numbers for the 80th Awards.

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SpaceX plans maiden launch of commercial rocket

March 3, 2010 - UNITED STATES

SpaceX plans to launch its Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on Mar 3. A resoundingly successful launch of Falcon 9 threatens the future of NASA’s Ares 1 rocket project, but might not silence critics of the private program. An independent advisory panel claims potential commercial crew transportation providers do not meet NASA safety standards for piloted vehicles.

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UN entity examines status of women 15 years after Beijing summit

March 1, 2010 - NEW YORK

The United Nations General Assembly convenes a meeting during the 54th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) to mark the 15th anniversary of the adoption of the Beijing Declaration in 1995. The commemoration invites a look at wins and losses for women since since the declaration, a task the CSW will undertake at their meeting. The CSW has highlighted climate change as an emerging issue for women, nothing that it exacerbates pre-existing inequalities.

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Karadzic trial resumes

March 1, 2010 - THE HAGUE

The trial of Radovan Karadzic at the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia resumes in March. The former Bosnian Serb leader boycotted the trial when it started in September, and the tribunal has appointed an attorney to represent him should he boycott the resumption of the case. Karadzic faces 11 counts of war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity from the 1992-95 war in Bosnia-Herzigovina when he was president of a breakaway Serb republic. He faces life in prison if convicted.

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United Arab Emirates hosts third Indian Ocean Naval Symposium

March 1, 2010 - ABU DHABI

The third Indian Ocean Naval Symposium at a time when regional super-powers India and China are vying for more presence in an area stretching from Gulf of Aden to the Malacca Straits. The meeting is a cornerstone of the Indian Navy’s aim to increase its influence in the region. Twenty-six littoral countries of the Indian Ocean comprise this pan-Asian maritime security forum. The meeting could upset the Arab world: Pakistan argues that IONS is grouped against the Islamic world.

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