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Turkey to deploy Armed Security Guards on Flights



…As Gulf carriers set to enjoy foreign airline U.S. tax exemption cut***

Under the new law recently passed by the Turkish Parliament, armed security guards would be deployed on flights to and from Turkey as precautionary measure against terror attack, according to news report on Thursday.

According to the draft law in Ankara, the guards to serve on planes will be members of staff of the Turkish Interior Ministry, including police officers, instead of personnel from private security companies.

The reports said that at least, one security guard would be deployed on flights regarded particularly as risky.

The security guards would sit on seats at the back of the plane and would dress in civilian clothes, said the report.

According to it, the Turkish authorities will also allow the presence of armed security guards in foreign civil aviation flights to Turkey, provided that the reciprocity principle is reserved.

Under the new law, the Turkish authorities would also allow the presence of armed security guards in foreign civil aviation flights to Turkey, provided that the reciprocity principle is reserved.

In the meantime, a U.S. congressional proposal that would eliminate income tax exemptions for certain airlines could affect major Gulf carriers, potentially worsening an international spat between U.S. airlines and their Middle East rivals.

Media reports on Friday said U.S. airlines had been petitioning the Federal Government for years to intervene in what they saw as unfair competition by the three major Gulf carriers.

The proposal, tucked deep in the Senate tax-cut plan, calls for airlines headquartered in foreign countries to pay the U.S. incorporate tax rate.

Firstly, if the carrier’s home country does not have an income tax treaty with the United States and secondly the carrier’s country of origin has fewer than two arrivals and departures per week operated by major U.S. airlines.

Airways, Emirates and Etihad Airways have for years been accused by U.S. competitors of being illegally subsidized by their governments.

The Gulf carriers denied the accusation.

If the proposal passes, it could leave the Gulf carriers more vulnerable because their home countries – the United Arab Emirates and Qatar – do not have income tax treaties with the United States, according to the Internal Revenue Service website.

A number of nations could possibly also be affected at a time when perceived discrepancies in U.S. trade agreements are facing a critical eye from U.S. corporations and the Federal Government.

The language in the Senate proposal sets the stage for a crackdown in tax leniency for these and other airlines.

This would likely be well-received by American carriers, which have for years petitioned the U.S. government to intervene in the dispute.

Under U.S. tax treaties, entities of foreign countries are either exempt or pay a reduced rate on their income and vice versa for U.S. entities abroad.

Reciprocity agreements, however, are less formal deals that fall short of an official accord, according to Tax aSam Brotman of Brotman Law.

A spokeswoman for Isakson did not mention the Gulf airlines.

“This provision supports American jobs by providing a level playing field and mutual fairness in international passenger aviation,” Isakson spokeswoman Marie Gordon said in an email on Thursday.

“Foreign airlines should not receive preferential tax treatment if their countries choose not to open their markets to U.S. companies.”

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Foreign News

Sri Lankan President Thanks Seychelles Defence Forces For Rescuing Sri Lankan Vessel From Somali Pirates



President Ramkalawan says Seychellois military boarded boat with utmost courage to take complete control

 The Seychelles Defence Forces (SDF) Special Forces and Seychelles Coast Guards on board Coast Guards vessel Topaz led a successful operation to regain control of a Sri Lankan vessel hijacked by armed Somali pirates.

Seychellois special military forces boarded the boat with utmost courage to take complete control of the vessel and rescue our Sri Lankan brothers.

The Commander in Chief of the Seychelles, President Wavel Ramkalawan has spoken to the Chief of Defence Forces, Brigadier Michael Rosette to congratulate the Special Forces and Coast Guards team on a well-executed and successful mission.

“This is the spirit of the Seychelles Defence Forces. Professionalism, courage, and bravery are the tenets of the new spirit in the force. Though small, we will make our contribution to attaining maritime security, peace, and determination in the fight against terrorism to ensure that the world, especially in our part of the Indian Ocean remains a safe and peaceful region. Once again, I reiterate the  pride and confidence of the Seychellois nation in the Seychelles Defence Forces.”

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Foreign News

GoG: Promoting Trans-boundary Management For Sustainable Socio-Economic Development



…Mission builds upon previous efforts by AU-IBAR in the beneficiary countries (Benin and Togo) for the national validation of the report on the State of the Transboundary Marine Environment (SoME)

NAIROBI, Kenya, January 23, 2024/ — From January 21st to 27th, 2024, AU-IBAR is on a mission in the republics of Benin and Togo. The mission is dedicated to supporting the implementation of a Transboundary Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) initiative between the two nations. Funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), under the project “Conservation of Aquatic Biodiversity within the Framework of the Africa Blue Economy Strategy,” this initiative holds the promise of fostering socio-economic development through the judicious use of marine resources.

Collaborative Efforts: AU-IBAR is collaborating with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) body, the Abidjan Convention, and the World Bank-funded West African Coastal Area Management (WACA) Project. The SIDA-funded project, implemented by AU-IBAR, involves an assessment to map the extent of Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) usage in Africa as a management tool for the conservation of aquatic biodiversity and ecosystems in the west, central, and northern regions of Africa.

Mission Objectives: This mission builds upon previous efforts by AU-IBAR in the beneficiary countries (Benin and Togo) for the national validation of the report on the State of Transboundary Marine Environment (SoME). The current objective is to secure joint expert validation of the SoME report and obtain high-level political endorsement for the provisions of the jointly validated report, demonstrating the commitment of both countries to the cause. Participants in the joint validation workshop include WACA project-nominated committee members from Benin and Togo, representatives from the Abidjan Convention, and government authorities from both nations, alongside relevant AU-IBAR staff.

Political Commitment: The opening statements during the joint meeting saw representatives from the Governments of Benin and Togo, the Executive Secretary of the Abidjan Convention, and the representative of the Director of AU-IBAR express unwavering commitment to the transboundary marine management process. Both the Director of AU-IBAR and the Executive Secretary of the Abidjan Convention reiterated their support for the Governments of Benin and Togo in realizing their shared vision for the sustainable management of coastal and marine resources in the designated shared maritime boundary.

Key Outcomes: The pinnacle achievement of the joint meeting is the validation of the study report on the state of the marine environment between Benin and Togo. This validation marks a significant milestone towards establishing the transboundary MSP between the two countries. AU-IBAR Director, DR Huyam Salih, emphasized that this accomplishment is a crucial step forward in enhancing aquatic biodiversity conservation and environmental protection in the Gulf of Guinea.

Conclusion: The joint expert consultation workshop serves as a testament to the collaborative efforts aimed at promoting transboundary management of shared marine aquatic ecosystems in the Gulf of Guinea. The validated report and political commitment from Benin and Togo are integral to realizing the socio-economic development potential inherent in the sustainable use of marine resources. As AU-IBAR continues its mission, the hope is that this initiative will serve as a model for other regions seeking to harmonize efforts for the conservation and management of their shared marine ecosystems.
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Foreign News

U.S.-British Strikes In Yemen Left 5 Dead, Say Houthi Rebels



The U.S. and British military strikes in Yemen have left five Houthi fighters dead and six others injured, the Iran-aligned rebels said on Friday, vowing retaliation.

“The American and British enemy bears full responsibility for its criminal aggression,’’ the Houthi military spokesman Yehya Saree said in a statement.

Saree said the massive attack had targeted several Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen including the capital Sana’a.

“It will not pass unanswered and without punishment.

“The Yemeni Armed Forces will not hesitate to target sources of threat and all hostile targets on the ground and in the sea,’’ he said. 

  • dpa
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