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Egyptian Schools to Teach Peace Treaty With Israel for First Time

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  • As Minister for Universities calls for an inquiry on anti-semitism at Oxford Univerisity

The 1979 peace treaty between Israel and Egypt will be taught in Egyptian schools for the first time, according to a report by Army Radio on Tuesday.

The historic accord, signed in Washington by Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat under the auspices of United States President Jimmy Carter, has not been taught in Egyptian schools until now.

Army Radio reported that one of its journalists had seen a new Egyptian history textbook that includes a chapter on the peace deal.

The section on the treaty in the textbook speaks of the two countries having “ended the state of war” and of “each side respecting the sovereignty and independence of the other side,” according to the report.

Egypt’s ex-president Hosni Mubarak lays on a gurney inside a barred cage.

It said that the new textbook was part of a widespread overhaul of educational content for schools announced by the Egyptian Education Ministry two years ago.

The role of former president Hosni Mubarak in the 1973 War – he was commander of the Egyptian air force – is significantly reduced in the book, compared to the portrayal of Mubarak when he was president.

Mubarak maintained good, if low-key, ties with Israel. That changed when the president was ousted in 2011 and a Muslim Brotherhood government headed by Mohammed Morsi was elected in June 2012.

But Morsi’s overthrow by then-army chief Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in July 2013 led to improved ties and cooperation. Jerusalem reopened its embassy in Cairo last September, five years after Israeli diplomats were forced to flee the building when protesters stormed it.

Meanwhile, Oxford University was yesterday ordered by the Government to investigate allegations of widespread anti-Semitism as it was engulfed by new claims that students were escaping punishment for racist attacks.

The university’s Jewish society released a dossier of eight separate racism allegations against the Oxford University Labour Club (OULC) following the resignation of co-chairman Alex Chalmers, who said a large proportion of members “have some kind of problem with Jews”.

Ed Miliband, a former member of the club, postponed a speaking event at the society, while Jeremy Corbyn was urged to “personally look into” the claims.

A letter from the Israeli embassy in London condemned students for their “disgraceful activity” as committee members were accused of singing a song called Rockets over Tel Aviv.

One member was also allegedly disciplined – but not excluded – by their college for organising a campaign of harassment which saw one student facing regular calls of “filthy Zionist”.

Oxford Jewish Society, which listed the new allegations, said it was “appalled at such shocking prejudice”.

However, one Corbyn supporter and former member of the OULC claimed he was a victim of a “anti-Semitism smear campaign” as he welcomed the departure of Mr Chalmers.

Max Shanly, 25, a former student at Ruskin College, claimed in a Facebook post that Mr Chalmers was “a man who I have on good authority went round Oxford spreading a rather nasty false allegation of anti-Semitism against me (entirely without basis in reality and thus libellous – he’s lucky I don’t sue him) as part of a wider smear campaign against me in Oxford by elements on the Right of the party”.

Mr Chalmers, an undergraduate at Oriel College, quit earlier this week after claiming some members of the club sympathised with Hamas.

Yesterday, Jo Johnson, the minister for universities, demanded investigations in a letter to Louise Richardson, the university’s vice chancellor. “There can be no justification for attacks on Jewish students, and no tolerance for institutionalised racism” he wrote.

Mr Miliband, the former Labour leader, was due to address the club on March 4. He was described by his spokesman as being “deeply disturbed to hear of reports of anti-Semitism”.

Oxford University has said it “does not tolerate any form of harassment or victimisation”.

Labour MPs said they were “deeply concerned”. Louise Ellman, vice chairman of Labour Friends of Israel, said she was also “deeply disturbed” by the OULC’s support for Israel Apartheid Week, adding that comparisons between Israel and apartheid-era South Africa “are a grotesque smear”.

Dozens of public figures, including John Bowers, principal of Brasenose College, Baroness Deech, former principal of St Anne’s College, and two leading lawyers, Lord Carlile and Lord Pannick, signed an open letter to the Labour club stating that they “observed with horror” the reports.

Signatories to the letter urged OULC to reverse its “distressing decision” to enforce Israeli Apartheid week.

Labour Students, has launched an investigation, with which OULC said it would cooperate. A Labour spokesman said the party “condemns anti-Semitism in any form”.

Mr Shanly said: “I oppose all forms of discrimination and am appalled by racism.” Mr Chalmers could not be reached for comment last night.

Haaretz with additional report from Telegraph

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WAIVER CESSATION: Igbokwe urges NIMASA to evolve stronger collaboration with Ships owners

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…Stresses the need for timely disbursement of N44.6billion CVFF***

Highly revered Nigerian Maritime Lawyer, and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mike Igbokwe has urged the Nigeria Maritime Administration and safety Agency (NIMASA) to partner with ship owners and relevant association in the industry to evolving a more vibrant merchant shipping and cabotage trade regime.

Igbokwe gave the counsel during his paper presentation at the just concluded two-day stakeholders’ meeting on Cabotage waiver restrictions, organized by NIMASA.

“NIMASA and shipowners should develop merchant shipping including cabotage trade. A good start is to partner with the relevant associations in this field, such as the Nigeria Indigenous Shipowners Association (NISA), Shipowners Association of Nigeria (SOAN), Oil Trade Group & Maritime Trade Group of the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA).

“A cursory look at their vision, mission and objectives, show that they are willing to improve the maritime sector, not just for their members but for stakeholders in the maritime economy and the country”.

Adding that it is of utmost importance for NIMASA to have a through briefing and regular consultation with ships owners, in other to have insight on the challenges facing the ship owners.

“It is of utmost importance for NIMASA to have a thorough briefing and regular consultations with shipowners, to receive insight on the challenges they face, and how the Agency can assist in solving them and encouraging them to invest and participate in the maritime sector, for its development. 

“NIMASA should see them as partners in progress because, if they do not invest in buying ships and registering them in Nigeria, there would be no Nigerian-owned ships in its Register and NIMASA would be unable to discharge its main objective.

The Maritime lawyer also urged NIMASA  to disburse the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF)that currently stands at about N44.6 billion.

“Lest it be forgotten, what is on the lips of almost every shipowner, is the need to disburse the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (the CVFF’), which was established by the Coastal and Inland Shipping Act, 2003. It was established to promote the development of indigenous ship acquisition capacity, by providing financial assistance to Nigerian citizens and shipping companies wholly owned by Nigerian operating in the domestic coastal shipping, to purchase and maintain vessels and build shipping capacity. 

“Research shows that this fund has grown to about N44.6billion; and that due to its non-disbursement, financial institutions have repossessed some vessels, resulting in a 43% reduction of the number of operational indigenous shipping companies in Nigeria, in the past few years. 

“Without beating around the bush, to promote indigenous maritime development, prompt action must be taken by NIMASA to commence the disbursement of this Fund to qualified shipowners pursuant to the extant Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (“CVFF”) Regulations.

Mike Igbokwe (SAN)

“Indeed, as part of its statutory functions, NIMASA is to enforce and administer the provisions of the Cabotage Act 2003 and develop and implement policies and programmes which will facilitate the growth of local capacity in ownership, manning and construction of ships and other maritime infrastructure. Disbursing the CVFF is one of the ways NIMASA can fulfill this mandate.

“To assist in this task, there must be collaboration between NIMASA, financial institutions, the Minister of Transportation, as contained in the CVFF Regulations that are yet to be implemented”, the legal guru highlighted further. 

He urged the agency to create the right environment for its stakeholders to build on and engender the needed capacities to fill the gaps; and ensure that steps are being taken to solve the challenges being faced by stakeholders.

“Lastly, which is the main reason why we are all here, cessation of ministerial waivers on some cabotage requirements, which I believe is worth applause in favour of NIMASA. 

“This is because it appears that the readiness to obtain/grant waivers had made some of the vessels and their owners engaged in cabotage trade, to become complacent and indifferent in quickly ensuring that they updated their capacities, so as not to require the waivers. 

“The cessation of waivers is a way of forcing the relevant stakeholders of the maritime sector, to find workable solutions within, for maritime development and fill the gaps in the local capacities in 100% Nigerian crewing, ship ownership, and ship building, that had necessitated the existence of the waivers since about 15 years ago, when the Cabotage Act came into being. 

“However, NIMASA must ensure that the right environment is provided for its stakeholders to build and possess the needed capacities to fill the gaps; and ensure that steps are being taken to solve the challenges being faced by stakeholders. Or better still, that they are solved within the next 5 years of its intention to stop granting waivers”, he further explained. 

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Breaking News: The Funeral Rites of Matriarch C. Ogbeifun is Live

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The Burial Ceremony of Engr. Greg Ogbeifun’s mother is live. Watch on the website: www.maritimefirstnewspaper.com and on Youtube: Maritimefirst Newspaper.

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Wind Farm Vessel Collision Leaves 15 Injured

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…As Valles Steamship Orders 112,000 dwt Tanker from South Korea***

A wind farm supply vessel and a cargo ship collided in the Baltic Sea on Tuesday leaving 15 injured.

The Cyprus-flagged 80-meter general cargo ship Raba collided with Denmark-flagged 31-meter wind farm supply vessel World Bora near Rügen Island, about three nautical miles off the coast of Hamburg. 

Many of those injured were service engineers on the wind farm vessel, and 10 were seriously hurt. 

They were headed to Iberdrola’s 350MW Wikinger wind farm. Nine of the people on board the World Bora were employees of Siemens Gamesa, two were employees of Iberdrola and four were crew.

The cause of the incident is not yet known, and no pollution has been reported.

After the collision, the two ships were able to proceed to Rügen under their own power, and the injured were then taken to hospital. 

Lifeboat crews from the German Maritime Search and Rescue Service tended to them prior to their transport to hospital via ambulance and helicopter.

“Iberdrola wishes to thank the rescue services for their diligence and professionalism,” the company said in a statement.

In the meantime, the Hong Kong-based shipowner Valles Steamship has ordered a new 112,000 dwt crude oil tanker from South Korea’s Sumitomo Heavy Industries Marine & Engineering.

Sumitomo is to deliver the Aframax to Valles Steamship by the end of 2020, according to data provided by Asiasis.

The newbuild Aframax will join seven other Aframaxes in Valles Steamship’s fleet. Other ships operated by the company include Panamax bulkers and medium and long range product tankers.

The company’s most-recently delivered unit is the 114,426 dwt Aframax tanker Seagalaxy. The naming and delivery of the tanker took place in February 2019, at Namura Shipbuilding’s yard in Japan.

Maritime Executive with additional report from World Maritime News

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ADEBAYO SARUMI: Doyen of Maritime Industry Marks 80th Anniversary, Saturday 

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