Month: April 2014

Tuvalu: Population 9,488 Bruises Russia

ussia has been diplomatically wounded of late. As punishment for taking over Crimea, it was isolated in the United Nations Security Council, condemned in the General Assembly by 100 votes to 11, excluded from the G8, and some of President Vladimir Putin’s best friends were sanctioned by the United States. Few of these recent snubs, however, have been quite as embarrassing as that from Pacific microstate Tuvalu, which, on March 31, scrapped its recognition of the Russian protectorates of South Ossetia and Abkhazia and established diplomatic relations with Georgia. The island nation may only have a population of 10,782, but its decision could spell the end of a years-long diplomatic strategy that has cost Russia millions.

Back in 2011, in the heady years after the Russo-Georgian War in 2008, Tuvalu was one of five countries that sided with Moscow in recognizing at least one of the two small, South Caucasus republics as independent, rather than as part of Georgia. Now, that number is down to three: Nicaragua, Venezuela, and Nauru, a Pacific island whose population of 9,488 makes it the second-smallest independent nation in the world, after Vatican City.

Click link below to continue reading:

http://www.newrepublic.com/article/117238/tuvalu-bruises-russia-establishing-diplomatic-ties-georgia

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‘Do it for Denmark!’ campaign wants Danes to have more sex. A lot more sex.

Denmark has a lot of things going for it. Last year, the UN’s World Happiness Report crowned it the globe’s happiest country, citing the nation’s commitment to maternity leave, gender equality, biking, and drinking lots of wine when it’s cold outside.

Its economy is also tops, chugging out $211 billion in annual GDP despite its relatively small population of 5.6 million. Economic inequality? Not a problem. Income distributes more evenly there than most places.

But Denmark has a sex problem. (Re-evaluating that happiness ranking already?)

Well, it’s not exactly a sex problem, per se. It’s more like a baby problem. According to government statistics, Denmark posted a birth rate of 10 per 1,000 residents in 2013 — its lowest in decades. The nation’s birthrate was  9.9 in 1983.

Click below to continue reading:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/03/27/do-it-for-denmark-campaign-wants-danes-to-have-more-sex-a-lot-more-sex/?tid=pm_national_pop

Austria Accepts ‘Joint Responsibility’ for Holocaust Atrocities, President Says

Israeli President Shimon Peres arrives in Austria on Sunday for an official state visit to the country. Photo: Israel Hayom video screenshot.

Israeli President Shimon Peres attended a Holocaust memorial in Vienna with Austrian President Heinz Fischer.

“Today, Austria accepts its joint responsibility with the Nazi criminals,” Fischer said, adding that Austria only relatively recently began the difficult-but-important process of acknowledging its role in the Holocaust and commemorating the country’s Jewish victims.

“I begin my visit to this country by bowing my head before this memorial, paying respect to the thousands of Austrian Jews sent to death camps from Vienna,” Peres said at the ceremony, Israel Hayom reported.

President Shimon Peres and Austrian President Heinz Fischer at the Holocaust memorial service on Sunday | Photo credit: AP

 

Courtesy of  The Algemeiner