Week 20 - 28/02/2021

Published on 28 May 2021 at 19:34

Germany Acknowledges Genocide in Namibia

Germany has officially acknowledged that it committed genocide during its colonial-era occupation of Namibia, and announced a financial support gesture.


German colonisers killed tens of thousands of Herero and Nama people there in early 20th Century massacres.


Foreign Minister Heiko Maas on Friday acknowledged the killings as genocide.


"In light of Germany's historical and moral responsibility, we will ask Namibia and the descendants of the victims for forgiveness," he said.


Mr Maas added that Germany would, in a "gesture to recognise the immense suffering inflicted on the victims", support the country's development through a programme worth more than €1.1bn (£940m; $1.34bn).


The agreement will reportedly see funding paid over 30 years through spending on infrastructure, healthcare and training programmes benefiting the impacted communities.


Ireland becomes first EU Country to recognise Israel's illegal settlements as a de facto annexation

The Government has recognised Israel's illegal settlements as a de facto annexation of Palestinian land.


Minister for Foreign Affairs, Simon Coveney, said a Sinn Féin motion on the issue "is a clear signal of the depth of feeling across Ireland."


"The Government shares that grave concern," he said.


"The scale, pace and strategic nature" of Israel's settlement action "is de facto annexation", Minister Coveney told deputies.


He said that Ireland is the first EU state to say so, adding that he does not "do it lightly".


Sinn Féin's spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, John Brady, who introduced the motion, welcomed this remark.


Fans Set to Return to Sporting Events 

Plans before Cabinet will see spectators allowed return to certain sports events in June, with the Government currently considering proposals on relaxing Covid-19 restrictions on outdoor events from next month.


They include the Leinster v Dragons rugby game at the RDS on 11 June. On the same day there will be fans in attendance at the Shamrock Rovers v Finn Harps game and the Cork City v Cabinteely fixture, under the proposals.


Racegoers will be able to watch racing at the Curragh at the end of June.


On 20 June the camogie league final at Croke Park will have fans in the stadium.


Attendances at inter-county games later in the season could be significantly higher than previously predicted.


EU Places Sanctions on Belarus 

27 leaders of the European Union have declared sanctions, as well as sealing the airspace above Belarus, following the forced landing of a Ryanair plane in the country last Sunday.


Journalist Roman Protasevich and his girlfriend Sofia Sapega were escorted off the flight, which had been scheduled for Vilnius, Lithuania, where they were both living, in what Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary declared “state-sponsored hijacking”.


Protasevich, a Belarus native living in exile in Lithuania, was well-known to the Belarusian authorities. He was a journalist who had made himself known by operating an influential government opposition telegram channel, Nexta, which was highly instrumental in the organising of last year’s protests, following alleged election fraud.

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