Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 12th 2014 Contents A37
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MANILA, PHILIPPINES---The Philippines and
Vietnam condemned a new Chinese law that re-
quires foreign fishermen to seek Beijing's approval to
operate in much of the South China Sea, but China's
Foreign Ministry insisted it has the right do so.
China's assertiveness in pressing its claims in the
strategic waters, which are believed to have signifi-
cant seabed gas and oil deposits, has unnerved its
smaller neighbours and created a potential military
flash point. Anger is especially acute in the Philip-
pines and Vietnam, which believe they have strong
claims on waters off their shores.
The Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs said
in a statement Friday that the new Chinese regula-
tion "escalates tensions, unnecessarily complicates
the situation in the South China Sea, and threatens
the peace and stability of the region."
Vietnamese Foreign Ministry spokesman Luong
Thanh Nghi said the law and other moves by China
in recent months are "illegal and invalid" and seri-
ously violate Vietnam's sovereignty. (AP)
About 300,000 people in
the US state of West Virginia
have been warned not to
drink tap water after a chem-
ical spill into a river near the
The water advisory closed
schools and businesses in
nine counties, and cancelled
a state legislative session.
A foaming agent used in
the coal preparation process
leaked from a tank at Free-
dom Industries on Thursday.
Governor Earl Ray
Tomblin told people affected
by the spill not to drink,
bathe or cook with the water.
President Barack Obama
has accepted West Virginia s
request for a disaster decla-
ration, which allows federal
aid to be used.
Jeff McIntyre, president of
West Virginia American
Water, told the Associated
Press news agency: "Until we
get out and flush the actual
system and do more testing,
we can t say how long this
Charleston Mayor Danny
Jones said at a press confer-
ence on Friday the spill had
been "devastating to the
public at large and to the
people that live in our city."
While the leaking con-
tainer held at least 40,000
gallons (182,000 litres), state
environmental official Tom
Aluise said they were "confi-
dent" that no more than
5,000 gallons escaped.
China and Japan are criticising each other's poli-
cies in Africa as each country pledges more money
for the continent. Japan has suggested China is buy-
ing off African leaders with lavish gifts. Meanwhile
China accuses Japan of courting African support for
a place on the United National Security Council.
Japan's leader Shinzo Abe is touring three nations
in Africa, the first trip there by a Japanese prime
minister for eight years. Abe is expected to pledge
more than US$14bn in aid and trade deals during his
trip to Ethiopia, Ivory Coast and Mozambique.
China has hailed Africa a "golden ground" for for-
eign investment and has pledged to double its aid to
the continent to US$20bn a year.
Abe's spokesman Tomohiko Taniguchi admits
Japan is lagging behind China in terms of investment
in Africa. But he told the BBC that "countries like
Japan, Britain and France cannot provide African
leaders with beautiful houses or beautiful ministerial
The Chinese often pay for public buildings, includ-
ing the African Union headquarters in Ethiopia,
where Abe is due to speak on Tuesday.
Taniguchi said: "Japan's aid policy is to really aid
the human capital of Africa." He said many African
leaders believed that through strong links with
Japan they could obtain industrial expertise and
China insists its aid and co-operation with Africa
are completely selfless.
The Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi told the
Hong Kong newspaper Ming Pao that China does not
approve of "certain countries" which try to compete
with others for their own interests and offer aid to
Africa out of purely political motives.
This appears to be a reference to Japan's at-
tempts to win the votes of African leaders in sup-
port of its bid to be a permanent member of the
United Nations Security Council, something China
JERUSALEM---Ariel Sharon, the hard-
charging Israeli general and prime minister
who was admired and hated for his bat-
tlefield exploits and ambitions to reshape
the Middle East, died yesterday, eight years
after a stroke left him in a coma from
which he never awoke. He was 85.
As one of Israel s most famous soldiers,
Sharon was known for bold tactics and an
occasional refusal to obey orders. As a politi-
cian he became known as "the bulldozer."
He led his country into a divisive war in
Lebanon in 1982 and was branded as indi-
rectly responsible for the massacre of hun-
dreds of Palestinians at the Sabra and Chatil-
la refugee camps outside Beirut when his
troops allowed allied Lebanese militias into
the camps. He later become prime minis-
ter.Sharon s son Gilad announced the death
yesterday afternoon. Sharon s health had
declined this week as a number of bodily
organs, including his kidneys, stopped func-
The life and career of the man Israelis
called "Arik" will be remembered for its
three distinct stages: his eventful and con-
troversial time in uniform, his years as a
vociferous political operator who helped
create Israel s settlement movement and
mastermind of the Lebanon invasion, then
his successful term as a pragmatist prime
minister, capped by a dramatic withdrawal
from the Gaza Strip.
As foreign minister in 1998, Sharon
famously called on Jewish settlers to occupy
as much land as possible before a deal was
reached with the Palestinian: "Everyone
there should move, should run, should grab
more hills, expand the territory. Everything
that s grabbed will be in our hands, every-
thing that we don t grab will be in their
hands," he said.
Years later, the Gaza pullout culminated
a gradual abandonment of the hard-line
policies for which he was known. In the
tumultuous summer of 2005, he pulled all
of Israel s settlers and soldiers out of the
seaside strip, having played a key role in
putting them there in the first place.
Sharon had painted his "disengagement"
plan as a step to reduce friction between
Israelis and Palestinians.
It was accompanied by construction of
a massive separation barrier in the West
While presented as security measures,
they also represented an admission of sorts
that continued control of the fast-growing
Palestinian population could threaten Israel s
Jewish and democratic character.
Ariel Sharon, former
Israeli PM, dies at 85
West Virginia chemical spill creates water warning
Men pour cold water onto themselves during an annual cold-endurance purification ritual at the Kanda Myojin Shinto shrine in
Tokyo yesterday. "Misogi" is a mountain ascetic practice of ritual purification in Japan, in which the participants may immerse
themselves in freezing cold water, stand under waterfalls, and/or do intense breath training. It happens in winter typically close to
New Years at many temples and shrines throughout Japan, and at special places along rivers and at waterfalls, especially in the
mountains. Misogi participants wear white, which represents purity. The men wear only a loincloth known as a fundoshi and a
headband. Women wear a kimono and headband. AP PHOTO
condemn China's fishing law
Japan, China criticise each
other's Africa policies
Major General Ariel Sharon shortly before
the 1967 Middle East War on May 29, 1967.
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