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Zig’s Place Chat and News Tuesday PM 3-16-21

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butterfly   Parliament begins its session headed by Al-Halbousi

Tuesday 16, March 2021 21:07 The House of Representatives started its forty-fourth session headed by Parliament Speaker Muhammad al-Halbousi, with the presence of 198 deputies .


butterfly   Attempts at persuasion continue until the last moments .. / NINA / Reveals the scenes of the delay in voting on the Federal Court Law

Tuesday 16, March 2021 21:53  The House of Representatives held its evening session today, Tuesday, which was three hours late, while the Presidency of Parliament and the Legal Committee are still engaged in persuasion attempts until the last moments to resolve disputes related to the Federal Court law.

Representatives spoke to the correspondent of the Iraqi National News Agency / NINA /, that “there is an objection to amending the articles of the law, Order No. 30 of 2005 of the Federal Court Law, which Parliament voted at dawn today.”

The deputies referred to the claims of some blocs to pass the amendment by two thirds, as it is related to the constitutionality of the Federal Court, and not a half or simple majority vote as mentioned in the amendment proposal.

The deputies added that “the delay in submitting the vote on the controversial law is due to the attempts to convince the Kurdish blocs of an agreed form of the original law. Otherwise, if the efforts fail, they will return to the amendment of the current law, which was voted by the House of Representatives early Tuesday morning.”

The Presidency of the Council of Representatives announced that the session this evening, Tuesday, will include voting in general, either on the new law of the Federal Court or on the amendment of the law.


butterfly   https://www.shafaq.com/en/Economy/Al-Rafidain-to-grant-10-million-dinars-advances-for-unemployed-citizens

Al-Rafidain to grant 10 million dinars advances for unemployed citizens 2021-03-16 01:34

Shafaq News / Al-Rafidain Bank announced that it will grant 10 million dinars advances for unemployed citizens.

The bank’s media office said in a statement that the advances will help citizens provide job opportunities or establish their own projects.

Furthermore, the office indicated that the advances will be granted according to several criteria, including the borrower’s area ofresidence.

butterfly  https://www.shafaq.com/en/Iraq-News/A-new-MP-instead-of-Aram-Naji-Muhammad-in-the-Iraqi-Parliament

A new MP instead of Aram Naji Muhammad in the Iraqi Parliament 2021-03-16 14:10

Shafaq News / Shabal Hassan Ramadan Safar becomes today, Tuesday a member of the Iraqi Parliament.

Shafaq News Agency correspondent said; Safar replaced the MP Aram Naji Muhammad, the spokesman of the Kurdistan Democratic Party in the Iraqi parliament who died after a long struggle with the Corona virus.

butterfly  https://www.shafaq.com/en/Iraq-News/Iraq-to-begin-implementing-new-regulations-to-contain-Covid-19-epidemic

Iraq to begin implementing new regulations to contain Covid-19 epidemic 2021-03-16 10:59

Shafaq News / Iraq introduced restrictions to help contain the Covid-19 starting March 21.

The government spokesman, Minister of Culture, Hassan Nazim, said in a press conference that a partial curfew is applied from 0900 p.m. to 0500 a.m., including a total curfew on Fridays and Saturdays.

Malls and restaurants to still open but adhering to the Supreme Committee for Health and Safety regulations.

Nazim stated that the virus still threatens the lives and economy noting that “the death rate is about 1.8 percent.

Iraq registered, today 5267 new cases of Covid-19 to take its total to 768352, and reported 39 fatalities to take its coronavirus death toll to 13827.

Sheila  Article & Video: Dr. Hotze on the dangers of the Covid-19 Vaccine — https://www.hotzehwc.com/2021/02/dr-hotze-on-the-dangers-of-the-covid-19-vaccine/

butterfly  https://ninanews.com/Website/News/Details?key=893878

A new deliberative meeting for the Presidency of Parliament and the leaders of the blocs

Tuesday 16, March 2021 23:20 |The Presidency of the House of Representatives held a new deliberative meeting with the heads of political blocs to discuss two axes, the first being the objections of some parliamentarians regarding the existence of a legal breach in voting by a simple majority on the articles of the proposed amendment of Order No. 30 of 2005 of the Federal Court Law, and the other axis for resolving the blocs’ disputes Political parties with the Kurdish blocs on Article 12 of the Federal Court bill.

butterfly https://ninanews.com/Website/News/Details?key=893881

Parliament raises its meeting to Thursday   Tuesday 16, March 2021 23:50 The House of Representatives raised its session to the day after tomorrow, Thursday.

butterfly https://ninanews.com/Website/News/Details?key=893880

Documents .. Approval of a parliamentary request to add proposals related to those covered by transitional justice laws in the general budget

Tuesday 16, March 2021 23:39  The Presidency of the House of Representatives approved an official request submitted by the Parliamentary Committee of Martyrs, Victims and Political Prisoners that includes a set of proposals related to the segments covered by the transitional justice laws.

The Presidency directed the Parliamentary Finance Committee to study the proposals within the application attached to the signatures of 87 deputies from different blocs, for the purpose of their inclusion in the General Budget Law 2021.

butterfly https://ninanews.com/Website/News/Details?key=893872

Tomorrow .. a government parliamentary workshop to develop the education sector

Tuesday 16, March 2021 22:34   The House of Representatives will hold a special workshop tomorrow afternoon, Wednesday, under the auspices of the First Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Hassan Al-Kaabi, in the presence of members of the Education, Finance, Family, Women and Childhood Committees, the Ministers of Education and Planning and the Head of the Advisors Board in Prime Minister, Advisor to the Prime Minister, Deputy Chairman of the Communications and Media Commission, and a number of agents and general managers.

butterfly  https://ekurd.net/iraq-offer-visas-arrival-2021-03-16

Iraq to offer visas on arrival for citizens of 30 countries

Posted on March 16, 2021BAGHDAD,— Iraqi government declared on Monday that citizens of 30 countries are now able to obtain a visa upon arrival to Iraq.

According to the official statement citizens of countries below can now obtain a visa on arrival at Iraq’s airports, land and sea crossings:

Countries that are permanent members of the UN Security Council (USA, UK, France, the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China)

European Union countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands

As well as citizens of Japan, South Korea, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Switzerland.

butterfly  The Iraqi government statement said that citizens of these countries must comply with all Iraqi preventive health measures as decided by the Higher Committee for Health and National Safety.

Iraqi prime minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi previously spoke of Iraq’s need for tourism following the historic visit of Pope Francis earlier this month, which he hopes will boost the country’s international image.

According to Kurdistan Regional Government visitors to Iraq’s Kurdistan Region from Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Lebanon, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and the United States, are eligible for a 30-day visa on arrival.

butterfly  https://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/50/1203/406175/AlAhram-Weekly/World/Will-Iraq-become-an-Islamic-State.aspx      Will Iraq become an Islamic State?

Shia Islamists are attempting to shape the contours of Iraq’s political system, but fears are rising that they might be pushing to turn the country into an Islamic State, writes Salah Nasrawi

Salah Nasrawi , Tuesday 16 Mar 2021  Over the last two weeks Iraq’s lawmakers have struggled to pass legislation that would create a Supreme Federal Court (SFC) to serve as the country’s primary constitutional platform, and is also required for endorsing the results of a crucial early parliamentary election scheduled for October.

A piecemeal approach was adopted by the country’s lame-duck parliament to vote on the bill, which was introduced by the government and backed by ruling Shia groups to avoid the lapse in the set election date after Kurdish and Sunni Arab members showed reservations about some of the controversial terms in the draft law.

The bill thrusts Muslim clerics into the unprecedented watchdog position of deciding on the constitutionality of all Iraq’s laws and their compatibility with Islamic Sharia. Iraq’s constitution states that “Islam is the official religion of the State and is a foundation source of legislation and no law may be enacted that contradicts the established provisions of Islam.”

Opponents to the bill say it violates other provisions of the constitution which clearly states that “no law may be enacted that contradicts the principles of democracy” or “contradicts the rights and basic freedoms stipulated” in the document. They fear it will effectively turn Iraq into a theological state modelled on the Islamic Republic in Iran

Under Iraq’s constitution, which was ratified in 2005, the FSC will be made up of a number of judges, experts in Islamic jurisprudence, and legal scholars, whose number, the method of their selection, and the work of the court shall all be determined by a law enacted by a two-thirds majority of the parliament.

butterfly  However, no such law has yet been enacted and experts in Islamic jurisprudence and legal scholars have not yet been incorporated into the operation of a caretaking court established by the post-invasion Coalition Provisional Authority. The panel has been put on hold after the death and retirement of several of its members, depriving it of a quorum.

Since the beginning of the month the 329-member parliament has voted on several provisions of the SFC draft law but delayed its decision on the disputed articles, unlocking a partisan path for political deal making. In a marathon session that went past midnight Monday, the assembly worked out most of the provisions in the draft bill and adjourned for Tuesday night for a final vote.

For weeks, parliament’s mainstream groups have been involved in horse-trading over the disputed legislation.

For Kurdish MPs, the new law could be an opportunity to let parliament approve the annual state budget which has been held up by the Shia groups’ opposition to the Kurdistan Region Government‘s (KRG) provisions. The KRG wants higher allocations in the federal coffers and to share oil exports.

Kurds also hope that they can extract more concessions on Baghdad’s demands to transfer customs duties and taxes, implementing federal laws and resolving long-term issues that remain hanging between them, including an energy law which will give Kurdistan free reign in exporting oil drilled in the region.

Iraqi Kurds are mostly Sunnis and their ultimate goal is to break away from the rest of Iraq and while it will be difficult for Baghdad to impose a Shia version of Islamic law on them, instability and disruption caused by political chaos could help them to advance their independence agenda.

butterfly The SFC law is also a painful reminder to Iraq’s Sunni Arabs inability to come to terms with Shia empowerment in the post-Saddam era and feel alienated by attempts by the country’s Shia factions to push for an Islamization programme coloured with Shiasim which threatens their religious identity.

Most Sunnis boycotted the referendum on the post-Saddam constitution on the grounds that encourages confessionalism and was a recipe for the end of Iraq as a unified state but Sunnis today are deeply fragmented and many of their political leaders have joined Shia alliances and depend on their support for their political survival.

Attempts to revoke the secular features of the Iraqi state started immediately after the US invasion in 2003 which removed former dictator Saddam Hussein from power. The first such attempt came in December 2003 when Abdel Aziz Al-Hakim, a leading Shia member in the US-installed Governing Council abolished Iraq’s Personal Status Law with the intention of placing family matters in the hands of religious authorities.

The unilateral decision by Al-Hakim, a leader of the then Supreme Council of the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, during his rotating presidency of the Council, caused an uproar among Iraqi women, liberals, Kurds and rights activists forced the then US civilian governor Paul Bremer to cancel it.

A push for state-sponsored Islamization, however, has continued as part of the ruling Shia groups’ drive to implement and apply laws based on Islamic interoperation. For example, the predominantly Shia Council of Ministers in 2014 proposed a draft Personal Status law for Shias which aimed to leave a religious mark on the country’s legal system.

Under the bill, Iraqi Shias would resort primarily to Islamic Sharia law and to Shia courts to conduct personal status affairs, such as marriage, inheritance, child care and women’s affairs such as work and education, which they can only do with male permission.

butterfly  The move would have automatically created Sunni personal status courts and weakened or even abolished Iraq’s long-standing civil law judiciary, pushing the country deeper into Islamization.

The law which would have allowed men to marry girls as young as nine did not go to parliament because of opposition by secularists, the United Nations and world human rights groups for fear that it would further worsen the situation of the rights of women and children in Iraq.

Yet many Iraqi Shias now resort to clerics for conducting marriage and other personal status affairs with rules especially on age and free consent sometimes not followed. In 2019, a BBC investigation uncovered a secret world of sexual exploitation of children and young women by Shia religious figures. The clerics were using Shia Sharia marriage laws to exploit women for profit, all with seemingly total impunity.

Other aspects of forced Islamization in recent years include the rise of religious institutions and practices. Political and militia groups say they are intent on enforcing specific religious strictures at a time when governmental authority is fragile and weak.

Though selling and drinking alcohol is legal under existing law, off-licenses have closed in most of cities and towns in the predominantly Shia south while in Baghdad they are constantly targeted.

butterfly   The enactment of the SFC law will certainly further empower Shia groups to pursue their Islamist agenda with many fearing that the court will play a role similar to that of the Guardian Council and Expediency Discernment Council of the Regime in Iran with supervisory powers over all branches of government.

Clearly, the issue cuts to the heart of tensions in Iraq between the rise of Iran-backed groups within state and society and the anti-establishment movement which has been protesting for more than a year to reject sect-based polices and Iran’s increasing influence, demanding a secular system and a civil state.

The future of the SFC, therefore, has deep implications for Iran whose leaders have repeatedly talked about exporting Iran’s Islamic revolution to other countries in the region and cloning their Islamic state structure and its revolutionary model.

Iran has already emerged as the dominant force in Iraq through allied Shia politicians and paramilitary groups expanding its influence beyond political and security efforts to commercial, business and cultural ties and the imposition of strict religious norms in its neighbouring country will be seen as a step towards the establishment of an Islamic system of government.

While Iraq’s confessional factions could succeed in striking a compromise deal to pass the bill, in ways small and large, the new version of the legislation can hardly be seen as aiming to plug up entry points for Islamisation in the lives of Iraqis.

With all these and other tough challenges, the road for Iraq’s Shia Islamists to declare the country an Islamic State may not be a smooth one, but they will certainly never stop trying. Yet that chilly prospect could be the maelstrom that will bring out the very end of Iraq.

Sheila   butterfly Do you think there are more articles appearing in the last few days – more than before this past week?


Posted on March 15, 2021 by David Robinson

The Keystone Pipeline upon completion would carry more than 800,000 barrels or 33.6 million gallons of oil through the pipeline per day. With no harmful emissions.

A Barrel of Oil is 42 gallons (not to be confused with a 55 gallon Drum). Because a gallon of oil weighs about 7.8 pounds per gallon – most tractor trailer trucks can only carry about 130 barrels of oil at a time – without violating our department of transportation limits of 80,000 lbs. on our roadways. The 80,000 limit includes the truck and the cargo weight TOTAL. (An EMPTY tractor trailer averages about 35,000 pounds in weight.)

It would take 6,154 more trucks going just from Canada to the Gulf Coast for that same oil – EVERY SINGLE DAY – seven days a week !!! Now a rail car holds approx. 30,000 gallons or 700 barrels. It would take trains pulling 1,143 more rail cars per day – EVERY DAY – just to pull the oil equal to that pipeline from Canada to the Gulf Coast. TRAINS and TRUCKS ??? BURNING MORE DIESEL FUEL AND CREATING MORE AND MORE EMISSIONS !!!! All that would be eliminated by the Keystone Pipeline.


Interesting calculations…

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