first_imgSome of the most active companies traded Thursday on the Toronto Stock Exchange:Toronto Stock Exchange (16,179.89, down 51.36 points)Canopy Growth Corp. (TSX:WEED). Health care. Up $3.58, or 9.69 per cent, to $40.51 on 10.9 million shares.Aurora Cannabis Inc. (TSX:ACB). Health care. Up 45 cents, or 5.02 per cent, to $9.41 on 9.6 million shares.Bombardier Inc. (TSX:BBD.B). Aerospace, rail equipment. Up three cents, or 0.59 per cent, to $5.09 on 8.8 million shares.Enbridge Inc. (TSX:ENB). Oil and gas. Up $1.56, or 3.68 per cent, to $43.90 on 5.6 million shares.First Quantum Minerals Ltd. (TSX:FM). Miner. Down 88 cents, or 4.61 per cent, to $18.20 on 5.1 million shares.Aphria Inc. (TSX:APH). Health care. Up 54 cents, or 4.60 per cent, to $12.29 on 4.8 million shares.Companies reporting major news:Magna International (TSX:MG). Auto parts. Down $2.61, or 3.24 per cent, to $78.00 on 1.2 million shares. The Canadian auto parts company has signed a deal to buy Italian company OLSA S.p.A., a maker of automotive lighting products, for about $354 million.Maple Leaf Foods (TSX:MFI). Consumer packaged goods. Up $1.08, or 3.36 per cent, to $33.24 on 517,872 shares. Maple Leaf has signed an agreement to buy two poultry plants and associated supply from Cericola Farms, a privately held company. The plants are in Bradford, Ont., and Drummondville, Que., and together process a total of about 32 million kilograms of chicken per year.last_img read more

first_imgLONDON — British Prime Minister Theresa May’s parliamentary allies are warning they could remove support from her minority government if she does not alter her Brexit deal with the European Union.Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party struck a deal last year to back May’s Conservatives on major legislation. But the Protestant, pro-U.K. party opposes the Brexit deal’s plans for keeping the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland open after Brexit.In a warning to May, DUP lawmakers abstained late Monday during several votes on finance bill, and voted against the government on one amendment.DUP lawmaker Sammy Wilson said the votes were “designed to send a political message to the government.”Writing in Tuesday’s Belfast Telegraph, May said the deal “puts Northern Ireland in a fantastic position for the future.”The Associated Presslast_img read more

first_imgNEW YORK — It pays more than ever to be an investor. U.S. companies have sent a record amount of cash to their shareholders as dividends this year as their profits continue to pile higher.The increase is key for shareholders, offering a bit of stability in what’s been a stomach-churning year for the stock market. The S&P 500 index has twice plunged by 10 per cent, and it was clinging to a 1 per cent gain for the year, as of Wednesday evening. After including dividends, though, its total return was 2.3 per cent.Wall Street is forecasting the choppiness to continue in 2019, partly because of slower growth in economies and corporate profits around the world. So any cushion for investors would be a welcome one. Three years ago, for example, dividends were the sole reason investors got anything out of their S&P 500 index funds. The index dropped 0.7 per cent that year, but with dividends its total return was 1.4 per cent.With less than a month left in 2018, companies in the S&P 500 index have already topped last year’s record of $419.8 billion in total dividends paid, according to Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at S&P Dow Jones Indices. Tyson Foods, Anadarko Petroleum and D.R. Horton all announced dividend hikes of at least 20 per cent last month. The biggest payer in the S&P 500 is AT&T, and Silverblatt says it may announce a boost to its payout in coming weeks to make it 34 consecutive years of increases.Companies have the wherewithal to do all this because their profits continue to surge. Across the S&P 500, earnings per share jumped nearly 26 per cent during the summer from a year earlier for the strongest growth in eight years. Besides dividends, companies have also been setting aside more of their profits for repurchases of their own stock as methods to return cash to shareholders. That’s been to the chagrin of critics pushing for higher pay for workers.The dividend increases aren’t just in the United States. Globally, payouts hit a third-quarter record this year, according to Janus Henderson. The $354.2 billion in total dividends was up 5.1 per cent from a year earlier, and growth was particularly strong in emerging markets.In China, big increases by banks, insurers and energy companies helped drive Chinese payouts up 14.6 per cent, for example. That marked a return to growth following three years of declines.Stan Choe, The Associated Presslast_img read more

first_imgTORONTO — Rising interest rates and slower income and population growth helped temper demand for new mortgages in the second quarter, according to Canada Mortgage Housing Corp.The federal housing agency says fewer Canadians opened new mortgages in the three-month period ending June 30, even though the total number of active mortgages and the value of those mortgages rose during the same quarter compared with a year ago.In a report which analyzed mortgage and consumer credit trends from credit agency Equifax, CMHC found that there were 205,000 new mortgages in the second quarter of 2018, down 11.9 per cent compared with a year ago.The decline came as the total number of active mortgage loans grew by 1.3 per cent to six million loans, while the average loan value grew by 3.7 per cent to $205,980.CMHC says the country’s total outstanding mortgage balance also rose, up five per cent to $1.23 trillion from the same period a year earlier.The housing agency says a low national unemployment rate helped temper the number of mortgages left unpaid for 90 days or more.It found that the number of delinquent loans fell to the lowest point since data became available in 2012. The total value of mortgages unpaid for 90 days or more fell 10.4 per cent to $2.4 billion during the period compared with last year.The report says those between the ages of 35 to 44 years old had the highest mortgage payments with a monthly average of $1,380.Mortgage loans accounted for a rising share of total debt at 66.5 per cent, says CMHC.The average monthly amount of non-mortgage debt, including credit card, car loan, line of credit and home equity line of credit, was $405 for mortgage holders. For non-mortgage holders, the monthly total was $267.Follow @LindaNguyenTO on Twitter.Linda Nguyen, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

first_imgPolice are asking anyone with information to please call Fort Nelson RCMP at (250) 774-2700, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.No further information is available at this time. FORT NELSON, B.C. – The Northern Rockies RCMP and North District Major Crime Unit are investigating the suspicious death of two people south of the Liard Hot Springs.On Monday, July 15, 2019, at approximately 7:19 a.m. Northern Rockies front line officers were called to an area on the highway approximately 20 kilometres south of Liard Hot Springs.Upon attendance, police discovered two adults deceased. Both deaths appeared to be suspicious and Northern Rockies RCMP called for assistance from North District Major Crime Unit.last_img read more

first_imgWashington: US President Donald Trump has said he expects to have a “very fruitful” meeting with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping next month in Japan, amid escalating trade conflict between the world’s two largest economies. Speaking to reporters at the White House on Monday, Trump also said he expects to meet his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. “We are going to be meeting, as you know, at the G20 in Japan. And that will be, I think, probably a very fruitful meeting,” Trump said on the possibility of his meeting with Xi. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince Salman ‘snubbed’ Pak PM Imran, recalled his private jet from US: ReportThe President’s remarks came as trade war between the US and China escalated after Trump last Friday increased the import duty on Chinese products worth USD 200 billion from 10 per cent to 25 per cent. He has also started the process of a similar increase on the remaining Chinese imports of over USD 300 billion. “We are taking in, right now, hundreds of billions of dollars. We are taking in billions of dollars of tariffs…. We have never taken in 10 cents until I got elected. Now we are taking in billions and billions…. In addition to that we have another USD 325 billion that we can do, if we decided to do it,” Trump said. “So we are taking it in tens of billions of dollars. We have never done that before with China. We have never done that before with anybody, frankly, because we have been taken advantage of all of our trade deals,” he said. Also Read – Iraq military admits ‘excessive force’ used in deadly protestsThe G-20 Summit would also be the first opportunity for a meeting between the Indian prime minister and Trump after the election results are declared in India on May 23. However, Trump, during his interaction with the media at his Oval Office, made no mention of any meeting other than that with Xi and Putin on the sidelines of the G-20 Summit. Like the Trump-Xi summit in Argentina last November, all eyes will again be on the two leaders in Japan because of the ongoing trade tension. Ahead of the meeting between Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and President Putin on Tuesday, Trump said on Monday that it made sense for the US to get along with Russia. “I’ll be meeting with President Putin also. I think the message is that there has never been anybody that’s been so tough on Russia but, at the same time, we’re going to end up getting along with Russia. It makes sense to get along with Russia,” he told reporters at his Oval Office.last_img read more

first_imgCasablanca- According to news outlet Finance News, Casablanca’s Megarama Cultural Center will host from 4th to 5th December the 10th edition of the International Gathering of Andaloussi Music. A concert will be reorganized the following day, December 6th, at Mohammed V Theater in Rabat, followed by another concert on December 7 at Mazagan Beach Resort in El Jadida. The Moroccan Ministry of Culture organizes these events in partnership with the Association of Fans of Moroccan Andaloussi Music. Colorful rhythms of Andaloussi music from different countries, namely Morocco, Spain, Algeria and Tunisia, will provide the audience with an exceptional, uplifting experience typical of Andaloussi music.The Ministry of Culture together with the Association of Fans of Moroccan Anndaloussi Music organize these events as part of its efforts to preserve and promote Andaloussi music,  a significant aspect of Morocco’s rich cultural patrimony. Andaloussi Music is deemed a noble music, and has especially a strong presence in the Moroccan elite formed largely by citizens with Arab-Andalusian origins, based in cities such as Fez, Tetouan, Rabat, Salé, Marrakesh, Chefchaouen, Tangier and Oujda.© Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributedlast_img read more

first_imgRabat – According to the Party of Authenticity and Modernity, a Moroccan opposition party, the government of the Republic of Paraguay announced the withdrawal its recognition of the so-called Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (founded by the Polisario Front).According to a statement issued by the party following a visit by its leader to Paraguay, the parliament of this Latin American country made an “important declaration.”Paraguay  decided to “to suspend its relations Polisario, which it considers as an armed separatist movement, and to support international legitimacy,” in finding a political solution to the conflict, the PAM said according to Anadolo agency. This is the third country in less than three months to withdraw its recognition of the Polisario’s RASD after Haiti and Panama which signals the dwindling legitimacy of this separatist movement as a representative of the Saharawis.During his meeting with Mohammed VI at the White House last November, President Obama pledged to continue supporting the efforts made by the United Nations to find a mutually-agreed solution to the conflict, adding that the Moroccan autonomy plan presented to the security Council in 2007 is “serious, realistic, and credible.”“The United States has made clear that Morocco’s autonomy plan is serious, realistic, and credible, and that it represents a potential approach that could satisfy the aspirations of the people in the Western Sahara to run their own affairs in peace and dignity,” said the White House.© Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributedlast_img read more

By Ismail ElouafiFez – Germany has announced its decision to construct for the first time a production factory for one of its most important industrial sectors, the armaments industry, in Algeria.Germany’s decision is the result of an agreement between the German Ministry of the Economy and the German government and Rheinmetall AG, a German Fuchs armor production specialist. The company will soon begin construction of its first factory in Algeria. According to the German newspaper Die Zeit, the factory will be built about 400 km east of the City of Algiers and will boast a budget of 28 million Euros, only a small portion of the agreement totaling 2.7 billion Euros.Fuchs armor will be produced under the original German factory’s license. Egypt, another country greatly in need of Fuchs armor, has continuously expressed an interest in the product as a way to counter Islamists in the Sinai Peninsula.In the first week of August, Germany’s vice chancellor, Sigmar Gabriel,  refused to allow export of construction of the factory to the Ukraine.According to the Algerian newspaper, Ennahar, this agreement dates back to 2008 when Chancellor Angela Merkel met Algerian President Abdelaziz Boutaflika to examine the political stability of his country before signing the agreement.Photo by AFP© Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed read more

Washington  –  The International Monetary Fund (IMF) highlighted the “commendable progress” made by the Moroccan economy with growth rate prospects expected at 4.5% in 2015.“We expect the Moroccan economy to strengthen going forward. In 2015, economic growth is expected to reach about 4½ percent, inflation is projected to remain low (around 1½ percent), while the fiscal deficit continues to narrow,” IMF Mission Chief for Morocco, Jean-François Dauphin, said on Monday.In light of the ongoing reform process, Dauphin pointed out the promising economic outlook of the country saying that “growth could further accelerate and reach the 5-5½ percent range over the medium term”. Dauphin, who made the statements in an article published in the IMF Survey Magazine: Countries & Regions, also described as “commendable” the efforts undertaken by Moroccan authorities to maintain macroeconomic stability despite the difficult external environment, noting that the country is called upon to deploy more efforts to consolidate macroeconomic gains.“There’s still more to be done to foster higher and more inclusive growth by lowering unemployment and poverty incidence, notwithstanding progress made in the last decade,” the IMF official said.While applauding Morocco for undertaken reforms to reduce economic imbalances over the last three years, Dauphin said the IMF supports Morocco’s economic program through a Precautionary and Liquidity Line, “to help address economic vulnerabilities.”“The authorities have implemented a package of economic reform policies, supported by an IMF Precautionary and Liquidity Line, to help address economic vulnerabilities,” he said, citing in particular the “significant reduction” in the fiscal deficit following an “impressive reform” of the subsidy system.As a result, the current account deficit has also narrowed and foreign exchange reserves have increased. The emergence of new export sectors and the recent decline in international oil prices have also played a role in the rebalancing process.The IMF official also noted that the emergence of new export sectors and the recent decline in international oil prices have also played a role in the rebalancing process.He also recalled the adoption in November 2014of a new organic budget law, which” is expected to strengthen and modernize the budget framework” adding that “a new banking law was also adopted, which broadens the regulatory and supervisory role of Morocco’s Central Bank”.In the same vein, Dauphin recommended “continued reforms to strengthen the competitiveness of the economy through further improving the business climate, fostering greater access to credit for households and small and medium-sized enterprises, improving governance and transparency, and investing in infrastructure and education.With MAP read more

Rabat – ‘Gladiator’ star Russell Crowe is reportedly coming back to Morocco next year in order to shoot scenes in the historical survival drama “Sand and Blood.”A report by Variety said Saul Dibb’s Sand of Blood will be the biggest shoot in Morocco next year.The production is based on the true story of an American ship that was wrecked on the Saharan coast of West Africa in the early 19th century. Russell Crowe will play the captain who negotiated for the safety of his men when they were captured by tribesmen.‘Sand and Blood’ will be the second movie that Russell Crowe films in Morocco, after his epic “Gladiator” which was shot in 2000 in Ouarzazate, southern Morocco.Highly acclaimed by Hollywood producers, Morocco has become one of the most popular film destinations and home to many successful international films.In 2014, Morocco hosted large-scale Hollywood shoots like Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (pictured) and Tom Hanks’ upcoming drama A Hologram for the King.In 2015, several international TV and film productions were shot in Morocco, including scenes for “Spectre,” the last film in the James Bond saga and the global hit “Game of Thrones. read more

Brasilia – Morocco is in the top three of the favorite destinations for Brazilians to spend the Christmas and New Year Holidays, a survey conducted by the travel site “Viajanet” said according to Maghteb Arab Agency (MAP). In terms of ticket sales, Morocco ranks third behind Cancun in Mexico and Orlando in Florida, says the study, supported by the Brazilian news agency “ANBA”, a body of the Arab-Brazilian Chamber of Commerce.The Austrian capital Vienna and Egypt respectively come in fourth and fifth positions, while Paris, Bariloche (Argentina), Washington DC, Florida and Amsterdam close in the Top Ten, adds the same source. In an attempt to diversify Morocco’s markets, Morocco’s Minister of Tourism, Lahcen Haddad, said last month that his ministry would launch a promotion strategy in some promising markets, such as Germany, Brazil, Russia, Netherlands, the UK and the Middle East.As part of Morocco’s strategy to attract more Brazilian tourists, Royal Air Maroc is set to launch a new route linking Casablanca to Rio de Janeiro next year.The new Casablanca-Rio de Janeiro route will be officially inaugurated on May 2, 2016. The new flight will be added to RAM’s existing flights into Brazil on a triangle route alongside Sao Paulo.The state-owned carrier will operate a twice weekly Casablanca – Sao Paulo – Rio de Janeiro – Casablanca flight and a single weekly Casablanca – Rio de Janeiro – Sao Paulo – Casablanca flightStarting on September 11, 2016, the second route will get an additional weekly flight, boosting the overall schedule to Brazil to four times weekly. read more

Toronto –  Safely insulated in his office building while last Wednesday’s terrorist attack occurred, Muddassar Ahmed decided he needed to do something to support the city he loves. Only hours later Muslims United For London was launched and a fundraiser was born.Wednesday began much like any other day for London’s Muddassar Ahmed. He never imagined that by the end of that day he would be spearheading an effort to raise financial support for the victims of London’s worst terrorist attack in years.Muddassar AhmedAccording to a report in the Independent, he had been at work only about ten minutes that morning before his attention was drawn to a commotion outside his office window. Nothing prepared him for the sight he witnessed. “I was shocked to see the injuries and the loss of life outside my window,” he said. A man later identified as Khalid Masood had propelled his rented vehicle into crowds of pedestrians as they made their way across Westminster Bridge, injuring more than 50 people and ultimately killing three. After crashing the vehicle into a gate, he started approaching Parliament House on foot. When he was confronted by a pair of unformed officers, he lashed out with the knife he was carrying, fatally wounding PC Keith Palmer. Moving closer to his target, he was confronted once more only this time the officers were armed. Masood was finally stopped and died from his gunshot wounds.Sequestered in his office building for four hours, Ahmed could only look on in horror and helplessness. It was then he decided he had to do something productive and the idea of fundraising came to his mind.Muslims United For London was born later that same day and donations began almost immediately. Ahmed shares his inspiration on the fundraiser’s website. “I reflected on what it means to be a born-and-bred Londoner and found myself proud of how security and medical services responded.”Though the idea was born from a Muslim Londoner’s desire to do something “proactive” to show his support for the victims and their families, Ahmed encouraged people from all faith groups to donate and show support and solidarity. He also acknowledges that, although money hardly replaces the lives lost and irrevocably shattered, he believes it was important to show unity and compassion in such a terrible time. “While no amount of money will bring back the lives lost or take away from the pain the victims and their families are going through, we hope to lessen their burden in some way.”The goal for Muslims United For London was to raise $30,000. With the total collected already reaching $34,500, it seems Ahmed’s message has struck a chord. For Muddassar Ahmed, the issue is a simple one, “… doing something proactive is part of the solution.” read more

Rabat –  Tarfaya is home to Africa’s largest wind farm and it generates enough power for 1.5 million homes, but it is only the start of Morocco’s green revolution.The World Bank showed in 2015 that 97 percent of Morocco’s energy came from imported fossil fuel, but this is beginning to change.Built within two years and opened in 2015, the plant in Tarfaya has the capacity for 300 MW. Siemens, the company responsible for the 131 turbines, states on its website that “the renewable power from Tarfaya’s wind turbines is expected to offset 900,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions each year. ” This is equivalent to 150 million trees.Wind energy in Morocco is a largely untapped market. The Moroccan Investment Development Agency estimates the country’s potential in wind power to be 25,000 MW, yet in 2010 the installed capacity was just 280 MW.42 percent of Morocco’s energy will come from renewable sources by 2020, and the target for 2030 is 52 percent. Tarfaya’s wind farm, which is valued at USD 1.4 billion, is necessary to achieve this.The energy it generates provides 15 percent of the 2000 MW wind energy target set by the Moroccan government, and each day the turbines generate enough electricity for a city the size of Marrakesh.CNN has said that Morocco is “leading the charge against climate change,” but to do this, the Kingdom must use renewable energy sources other than wind.Concentrated solar plant Noor 1 is just outside of Ouarzazate and is one of the world’s biggest solar plants. When its construction is fully completed in 2018, the plant will generate enough energy for a million homes, and perhaps more to be exported to Europe.The Climate Investment Funds finance group has determined that the plant will decrease carbon emissions by about 760,000 tons each year.The World Bank has even said that this plant will “reduce the country’s energy dependence by about two and half million tons of oil”.By the end of 2015, Morocco had 1,770 MW of hydro power, the largest of them being the 465 MW Afourer Pumped storage station opened in 2004.The Kingdom is keen to increase the use of hydropower, and in November 2015 it obtained a loan of EUR 35 million from the European Bank for Reconstruction & Development to renovate 12 of its small and medium-sized hydro-power plants.Biomass is energy from organic materials, and due to the large amount of agricultural resources within Morocco, biomass within the country has the potential to generate 950 MW.Additionally, the Green Morocco Plan, a recent project by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fishing, aims to obtain 400 MW by 2030 through “agricultural production and new regulations for waste management.”This Green Morocco Plan aims to triple the income of almost three million people living in rural areas, but it is not the only project conscious of local communities.The wind farm in Tarfaya gives MAD 400,000 to the area each year. This money is used for local projects like Tarfaya’s street lighting program, as well as to support local youth.The plant also prefers to employ local residents – civil engineer Hafsa Tarfaoui works at the Tarfaya wind farm and says that when recruiting “the priority is finding a person from this area,” although this can be challenging when locals do not possess necessary qualifications.A study conducted this year by Stanford University showed that Morocco had the potential to run only on green energy by 2050, and that this would create more than 88,000 jobs and give USD 3.5 billion to the Moroccan economy.For this to happen, it is essential that Morocco listens to Abdeladim Lhadi, High Commissioner for Water, Forests and the Fight Against Desertification of Morocco, who said “we’ve done a lot, but we still have a lot to do in the coming years.” read more

TORONTO — Books that explore the emergence of a new China, the manipulative goals of authoritarian Russia, and the end of post-war democracy are on the short list for the Lionel Gelber Prize.The five titles include Elizabeth C. Economy’s “The Third Revolution: Xi Jinping and the New Chinese State” from Oxford University Press and Timothy Snyder’s “The Road to Unfreedom: Russia, Europe, America” from Tim Duggan Books.Also on the list is Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt’s “How Democracies Die,” published by Crown.The jury also liked Rania Abouzeid’s “No Turning Back: Life, Loss, and Hope in Wartime Syria” from W.W. Norton & Company, and Adam Tooze’s look at the aftermath of the 2008 economic crisis, “Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crises Changed the World,” from Viking.Founded in 1989 by Canadian diplomat Lionel Gelber, the $15,000 award honours non-fiction books in English on foreign affairs that seek “to deepen public debate on significant international issues.”It is presented annually by The Lionel Gelber Foundation in partnership with Foreign Policy magazine and the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy at the University of Toronto. The winner will be announced Feb. 26.The Canadian Press read more

COPENHAGEN — The Norwegian Intelligence Service says GPS signal disruption as seen during major NATO drills in Norway last year “is of particular concern” for the military and “is also a threat to civil aviation in peacetime.”The intelligence agency said Monday in its annual report that the signal jamming “represents not only a new challenge” for NATO members, but saying Russia’s ability to projects its power “in peace, crisis and war will increase.”Norway and Finland have protested against the incident during NATO’s Trident Juncture drills between Oct. 25 and Nov. 7, with Oslo saying Russian forces on the Arctic Kola peninsula were behind the GPS interference. Moscow denies any involvement.The GPS jamming isn’t believed to have caused any accidents.The Associated Press read more

Rabat – Minister of Governance and General Affairs Lahcen Daoudi has finally spoken about what pushed him to submit his resignation request after he joined a sit-in against the major boycott campaign on June 5.In an interview with Al Jazeera, Daoudi said that he decided to resign from the government to reduce the damage to his party, the Justice and Development Party (PJD).He explained his “unplanned” participation in the sit-in in front of Parliament, saying that the sit-in coincided with his arrival in the Parliament for a parliamentary committee meeting. He added that he participated for fear that a crowd of protesters would surround him. The sit-in was organized by employees of Centrale Danone, which has been under boycott by Moroccan consumers since April 20. Danone fired many of its employees due to the effects of the boycott. In his interview, which was published Saturday, Daoudi recognized that he may have made a “hasty decision.”The minister, who angered boycotters, added that his participation was to defend employees rather than Centrale Danone.Since the sit-in last Tuesday, the PJD released a series of statements denouncing Daoudi’s participation in the sit-in. In the first statement released Wednesday night after an extraordinary meeting, the party considered the action “unreasonable” and “inappropriate.”The party has also appreciated Daoudi’s decision to resign from the government.On June 8, the party released another statement, denying it had received a resignation request from Daoudi.The statement notes that it learned about his intention to resign and “hailed his courageous decision,” but never received his resignation request.Since the launch of the boycott on April 20, Daoudi has angered boycotters by defending Centrale Danone and the national economy. In May, Daoudi said that the boycott is going on for “no reason.”King Mohammed VI has not yet approved Daoudi’s resignation request, as required by the Moroccan constitution.Subsequently, Daoudi participated in the Government Council of Thursday, June 7. read more

Rabat- In a large meeting with government ministers on Monday, July 30, to discuss measures needed to accelerate projects mentioned in his Throne Day speech, the King pledged to personally supervise development projects. For the 19th anniversary of King Mohammed VI’s accession to the throne, the monarch gave his customary ceremonial speech addressed to the Moroccan nation from the capital city of the Rif region, Al Hoceima.Following the speech, the sovereign attended a meeting with Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani, Minister of State in charge of Human Rights Mustapha Ramid, Interior Minister Abdelouafi Laftit, Minister of Economy and Finance Mohamed Boussaid, and Minister of Agriculture Aziz Akhannouch, among other ministers. At the closing of the meeting, the sovereign pledged to personally supervise the relevant projects and remove all that might hinder their progress.The King stressed that special attention should be paid to achieving trust and social justice in the Moroccan society between economic and political trade unions and by using the country’s resources fairly.The King reiterated the need to improve social supports and create more job opportunities and business facilities.The King also gave high priority to the development of education and the health system and the 2025 water plan to solve shortage problems in many regions of Morocco during the discussion.As per the speech, the King urged ministers to focus on the ‘RAMED’ health coverage program, suggesting that they should collectively work to correct the country’s health system “characterized by blatant disparities and poor management” and bring positive change for citizens. read more

Whether formal or casual, wedding invitations these days are meant to set the tone for the celebration, reflecting the themes of the weddings themselves.Heavier, more expensive papers reflect fancy black-tie weddings. Simple textured invitations with interesting fonts reflect celebrations in a more contemporary style. And florals reveal more classically romantic events, experts say.DESTINATIONS“One of the biggest trends we’ve been seeing are printed envelope liners, particularly for destination weddings. So if you’re getting married on a beach, there are liners printed with seashells, or maybe light blue with waves,” says Rachel Sylvester, senior lifestyle editor for Real Simple magazine.Kyle Williams, lead merchant for wedding stationery at the Chicago-based, design-oriented Paper Source, which has 130 stores across the country, says, “Destination weddings are a huge trend now, and we’re responding with invitations that speak to various destinations, like beach scenes, or mountain vistas, or grapes and flowers for Napa Valley weddings.”ColoursNo matter what kind of celebration it is, couples are becoming more creative with colour, experts say.“You often see a color-on-colour approach to invitations, with a lot of couples pairing blush pink with orchid, for example. In addition to invitations, there’s an attraction to a range of colours reflected in things like bridesmaids dresses, which are increasingly in any array of related colours instead of all the same colour,” she says.FLORALS and GREENERY“Florals and greenery are really working right now. It’s really more about the execution. The trend started a few years ago with leaf motifs, and now we see it in lilacs, lavender and eucalyptus leaves,” Williams says.LUXE MATERIALS“When couples come in to look at invitations, paper quality is the first thing they look at,” Williams says, adding that thicker papers and fancy envelopes and liners are hot items.“If it’s a black-tie wedding, for example, it’s top-quality thick paper and envelopes with a bit of shimmer,” he adds.CRAFTYYou can design and print your own invitations, use a professional designer or stationer, or go with an in-between option, using online retailers like Shutterfly or Minted.If you decide to make your own, Sylvester recommends aiming for interesting calligraphy, or hiring a calligrapher to handwrite names and addresses beautifully for you.WEBSITESWebsites are a must now, experts agree, and can be mentioned on whatever type of invitation you choose.“Your website is a catch-all place for wedding information that is very detailed, and an important way of getting news about any last-minute event changes to your guests,” Sylvester says.“It’s poor form to include anything about your registration in your invitation,” she adds. “A wedding website is a more appropriate place to include a link to a registry, if you go that route.”It’s also a good place for links to maps and hotels, and a place to post photos after the event.ECO-FRIENDLY“All of our paper is mostly recycled, and that’s something people really expect now,” says Williams.“Plantable wedding invitations embedded with seeds are a great sustainable option, as is vegetable-based ink. And for those who want to go beyond paper, there are even rustic-looking invitations made of thin, laser-cut wood,” says Sylvester, of Real Simple.“E-cards are certainly less expensive and more environmentally friendly, but paper is by far more popular,” she says. “At the end of the day, aside from the photos, you have your dress and your invitation suite (invitations, R.S.V.P. cards and thank you notes) that encapsulate who you are and what the wedding was like, and will remain a memento for years to come.”Katherine Roth, The Associated Press read more

Rabat – The line between theological and nationalist sentiments has often become blurred throughout the ongoing Israel-Palestine crisis. However, recent comments calling into question the nationality of Jesus of Nazareth have stood out, sparking widespread controversy and debate.Over the weekend, on July 6, American political activist Linda Sarsour — a Muslim and outspoken supporter of Palestine— reignited debate over the nationality of Jesus by claiming that the religious figure was Palestinian.“Jesus was Palestinian of Nazareth and is described in the Quran as being brown copper skinned with wooly hair,” she tweeted on Saturday. The comment received subsequent backlash from hundreds of critics, many of whom accused Sarsour of making historically inaccurate and politically-driven claims.Despite the heavily targeted criticism against Sarsour, the activist’s argument is by no means new. Her comments echo those previously made by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.“We celebrate the birth of Jesus, a Palestinian messenger of love, justice and peace, which has guided millions from the moment that his message came out from a small grotto in Bethlehem over 2,000 years ago,” Abbas said during a Christmas speech in 2014.The comments match a statement from earlier this year made by the Somali-American Representative Ilhan Omar. In April, Omar retweeted a New York Times op-ed claiming that “Jesus, born in Bethlehem, was most likely a Palestinian man with dark skin.”Though Sarsour’s comments attracted hundreds of critics, one of her more prominent detractors was Yair Netanyahu, a right-wing activist and the son of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.“Are you that stupid? On the cross above Jesus’ head was the sign ‘INRI’ – ‘Iesvs Nazarenvs Rex Ivdaeorvm,’” the young Netanyahu replied, “Which means in Latin – Jesus of Nazareth king of the Jews! The Bible say that Jesus was born and raised in Judea!”The prime minister’s son was joined by many disparagers who pointed out that Jesus is widely considered to have been Jewish; however, Sarsour argued that to be Jewish or Palestinian is not mutually exclusive.“Palestinian is a nationality not a religion,” Sarsour wrote. “Your point is not negated. Jews lived with Palestinians in peaceful co-existence before there was a state of Israel.”During the brief twitter war sparked by Sarsour’s comments, the activist turned to political discussion. She condemned the “military occupation” of Bethlehem, the scriptural birthplace of Jesus.“Why so upset by the truth. Jesus was born in Bethlehem aka بيت لحم in Arabic,” Sarsour tweeted. “Bethlehem is in Palestine. It’s currently militarily occupied by Israel and home to a predominately beautiful Palestinian Christian community. Yes, the birthplace of Jesus is under military occupation.”Although this instance was not the first time debate has erupted over this issue, many within the pro-Israel camp have seen the comments as an attempt to politicize history and erase Jewish ties to the Israeli territory.Despite this criticism, the Israeli side has certainly never hesitated to weaponize history as a tool for furthering its own political goals, especially through its efforts to conceal war crimes committed during the Nakba.Meanwhile, as both Israel and Palestine’s fervent commitment towards proving ties with Jesus of Nazareth fuels further conflict, the same prophet’s message of peace and universal brotherhood seemingly eludes them. read more