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Edited by Syed M. Aslam
Dec 11 - 17, 2000

*** "GLOBALISATION EXPANDS THE OPPORTUNITIES for unprecedented human advance for some, but shrinks those opportunities for others and erodes human security."

(Activists at an international health meeting in Savar criticising the UN for wavering off the track of equitable development)

*** "WHO ARE THE AUTHORITIES trying to fool? They can no longer fool us. Solidarity is good indeed, but it cannot, in any case, be used to hide the government's failure to alleviate poverty."

(A Moroccan jobless graduate commenting on the campaign launched by King Mohammed VI to raise funds for the poor and the lack of genuine welfare policy)

*** "NAME A SINGLE ORDINARY CITIZEN in whose favour the minister's privilege was exercised. Has any poor man ever been given a quota in recognition of his services to the democracy? . . . Is it's a privilege to plunder national wealth while the common man remains deprived of clean drinking water? The tillers of the land were not allowed to benefit from land reforms either."

(Justice Khalilur Rahman Ramday lambasting the privilege for allocating of LPG quotas 'for those who fought for democracy' during a case heard by a five-member bench of the Lahore High Court. He mentioned Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto, both two-time prime ministers)

*** "GOVERNMENTS ARE, more and more, blocking access to the Internet to guard against information that's critical of them or offensive to the culture. Tools like this can counteract that trend."

(Cindy Cohn, an attorney working for an Internet free-speech organisation in San Francisco, commenting on about-to-be released software by group of anonymous hackers which will bypass restrictions to access websites otherwise banned by a national government)

*** "MOST OF THESE CHEMICALS didn't exist 50 years ago. Now they're building up in the bodies of every living being on earth. They're contaminating the food we eat, the air we breathe and the water we drink."

(A statement issued by environmental pressure group Greenpeace which staged a demonstration in front of a convention centre in Johannesburg which is the venue of negotiations on a global treaty to ban toxic pollutants)

*** "DESPITE THE HUMAN, material and economic losses and the return of a punitive policy, the Palestinian people remain determined to continue the struggle against Israel."

(Palestinian National Authority declaring continuation of struggle despite heavy-arm tactics against unarmed and besieged Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied territories)

*** "AMERICA HAS TURNED SADDAM HUSSEIN into the devil to justify its physical and military presence in the Middle East. President Saddam is more popular now than he was before the embargo was imposed."

(French foreign minister Claude Cheysson on his arrival to Baghdad along with 115 European politicians, clergymen and members of NGOs in defiance of US-led UN sanctions on Iraq)

*** "I HAVE BROUGHT 6,000 letters and petitions to ask the King to stop the suffering and cruelty of the dog skin trade and to improve animal welfare in the country generally."

(British animal rights activist Kim Cooling who presented a petition to the King of Thailand to step in to halt the slaughter of some 33,000 dogs in the country every year for their meat and skins)

*** "THIS IS A GOOD GESTURE but Vajpayee needs to improve it. He needs to say that Kashmir is a disputed territory and should be resolved through tripartite talks (between India, Pakistan and Kashmir)."

(Leader of pro-independence All-Party Hurriyet Conference of Indian-occupied Kashmir, Abdul Ghani Lone commenting on peace initiative from Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee)

*** "IF THIS HAD BEEN a cricket match, a lot of people would have been tempted to look a lot more closely at the result."

(Indian national media lampooning the winning of Miss World title for the fifth time suggesting the victory of recent Miss World Priyanka Chopra was stage-managed)