Category Archives: UK

UK, US & France Secure UN Sanctions Against Salah Badi

FCO statement on United Nations Sanctions Committee decision to sanction militia leader Salah Badi

Foreign & Commonwealth Office

Foreign & Commonwealth Office

FCO statement on United Nations Sanctions Committee decision to sanction militia leader Salah Badi.

A Foreign Office spokesperson said:

The UK – along with our US & French partners – has secured United Nations Security Council agreement to sanction Salah Badi under the terms of UN Security Council Resolution 2213 (2015). We will continue to hold to account those seeking to undermine stability and security in Libya.

Salah Badi is the senior commander of the Al Somood Brigade, a militia opposed to the UN-recognised Government of National Accord. He has worked consistently to undermine a political solution in Libya. In August and September 2018, Salah Badi played a leading role in heavy clashes in Tripoli in which at least 120 people were killed, most of whom were civilians.

This designation will subject Salah Badi to a travel ban and asset freeze, thereby sending a clear message from the international community that acts of violence against the Libyan people will not be tolerated. The UK will not allow those seeking to obstruct peace and stability in Libya to act with impunity.

12-16 November 2018: HMA Kate Smith Travels To Northern Greece

British Ambassador Kate Smith CMG travelled to Northern Greece for a series of meetings with local authorities and businesses

British Ambassador Kate Smith CMG travelled to Northern Greece for a series of meetings with local authorities and businesses

British Ambassador Kate Smith CMG travelled to Northern Greece for a series of meetings with local authorities and businesses

The 5-day long trip to Northern Greece included a series of meetings with Greek officials, visits to local businesses whose operation is linked to the UK and speeches.

Starting from Alexandroupolis, British Ambassador Kate Smith CMG met the Mayor of Alexandroupolis, Evangelos Lambakis with whom they discussed the future potential of the region. She also had a meeting with the General Regional Police Director of Eastern Macedonia and Thrace, Lt General Nikolaos Menexidis with whom she discussed cooperation in tackling organised crime before their visit to the Evros area.

The Ambassador visited the port of Alexandroupolis where Chairman Mr. Christos Doukas briefed her on the prospects of this key Northern Greece port.

In Kavala, the Ambassador met Deputy Head of Region Mr Theodoros Marcopoulos and Kavala Mayor, Mrs. Dimitra Tsanaka and had very useful discussions about the challenges and the opportunities the area faces, with emphasis to energy given the significance of the completion of the TAP project.

Following on energy theme, the Ambassador visited the Prinos off-shore oil field operated by Energean Oil & Gas where the team briefed her on the operation in the area and the Prinos contribution to energy sources diversification.

The Ambassador also visited the Thrace Group plant in Xanthi – one of the top producers of Technical Fabrics and Packaging Solutions with presence in 11 countries, incl. the UK, in which 20% of its operation is taking place. She also travelled to Serres to visit the KRI KRI plant – one of the most dynamic industries of dairy products, with 50% of its yogurt exports being directed to the UK.

Moving on to Thessaloniki, the Ambassador addressed the students at the American College of Thessaloniki (ACT) on the relations between ‘Britain and Europe’ in view of the UK’s exit from Europe, touching upon to different perspectives on Brexit.

On Thursday 15 November, she participated in the THESSALONIKI SUMMIT 2018 joining a panel discussion on ‘European perspective and connectivity, industrial development and cooperation in the Western Balkans’ and sharing her viewpoint on the progress made and the challenges faced in the wider Balkans region.

This trip is included as part of a series of visits the British Ambassador Kate Smith CMG has been conducting across Greece.

PSVI Film Festival: Fighting Stigma Through Film

The UK Government invites you to attend its film festival on Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict on 23 & 24 November 2018 in London

PSVI Film Festival

PSVI Film Festival

The UK Government is taking the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative to the big screen for the first time. The ‘Fighting Stigma Through Film’ festival will take place on the 23 & 24 November 2018 at the British Film Institute (BFI) in London.

The festival aims to harness the power of film and cinema to help fight the discrimination so often faced by survivors of sexual violence in conflict. Over two days there will be screenings of 38 films and documentaries from around the world – sharing stories of survivors and the inspiring people working alongside them. Among the titles, the festival will host the world premiere for Leslie Thomas’ film ‘The Prosecutors’ which explores the battle for justice survivors face.

The event is supported by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, the Prime Minister’s Special Representative on Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict, Pramila Patten, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict, and Angelina Jolie, UNHCR Special Envoy.

Alongside screenings, the PSVI film festival will display thought-provoking art installations and showcase the work of organisations striving to end of the horror of sexual violence in conflict. Workshops will be running throughout, led by prominent experts on various PSVI topics, offering the chance to learn more about these important issues and ask questions.

Register to attend

Admission is free and all are welcome to come along and watch a film, join a workshop, or explore the exhibition.

Doors are open on Friday 23 November from 10am to 2pm and Saturday 24 November from 9am to 9pm.

For more information and to register your attendance please visit our Eventbrite page.

Why is the PSVI campaign so important?

Sexual violence as a weapon of war continues to destroy, destabilise, and demoralise individuals, communities and societies across the world.

As well as leaving a physical wound, sexual violence leaves a social stigma – which becomes a global problem crossing generations. Ending the cycle of sexual violence in conflict and its associated stigma is vital for upholding international peace and security.

The UK remains highly committed to preventing and responding to conflict-related sexual violence, following the launch of the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative (PSVI) by former Foreign Secretary, Lord Hague, and UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie, in 2012.

The PSVI has three objectives:

  • tackle stigma
  • secure justice and accountability
  • prevent sexual violence in conflict

The film festival marks the one year countdown to a PSVI international conference, which the UK will host in 2019 five years on from the 2014 Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict. The event will celebrate progress, address remaining challenges, and secure further commitments to action.

Government Supports Charities To Go Digital

Government announces £1 million funding to support programmes helping charities to improve their digital skills

Tech Meeting

Tech Meeting

  • £1 million to expand training programmes for charities to improve digital skills
  • Fund follows a commitment in the Civil Society Strategy to support charities to build their digital confidence
  • Training to enable charities to develop an understanding of how technology can make it easier for them to achieve their goals

Charities across England will have the opportunity to improve their digital skills through a new £1 million digital training fund for the sector, Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright announced today.

The Digital Leadership Fund will give industry leaders’ free access to training or heavily subsidised courses to boost their digital skills and develop a wider understanding of how technology can help them fulfil their mission.

Training available for charity bosses will include learning how to maximise online fundraising tools, build a social media presence or modernise their operational delivery by embedding updated IT systems.

Training may also include learning how to harness emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence, to achieve their charitable objectives.

The fund supports the government’s recently published Civil Society Strategy, which outlined plans to help charities build their digital capabilities to benefit service-users and wider society.

Jeremy Wright, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said:

We want charitable organisations to thrive in the digital age and are committed to helping them get the most out of technology, which can act as an enormous force for good.

Through this programme, charity leaders will have more opportunities to enhance skills and boost employee confidence while creating a greater and more positive impact on people and their communities.

This programme is in addition to the £400,000 Digital Inclusion Fund which was launched in August to help older and disabled people acquire digital skills. Projects are expected to include the teaching of basic skills such as booking GP appointments online, using apps to communicate with friends and family, and making the most of search engines.

It will also harness the power of tech to get people online and support the Digital Strategy, which sets out Government’s ambition to create a world-leading digital economy that works for everyone.

The Digital Leadership Fund is to organisations that are currently providing training to improve charities’ digital skills.

Applications close on Friday December 7th.

Justice Minister Chairs Roundtable On Media Access To Courts

Newspapers, broadcasters and online platforms will today discuss open justice and access to courts at a roundtable hosted by Justice Minister Lucy Frazer

Ministry of Justice

Ministry of Justice

  • Discussion on how to maintain and enhance media access to courts
  • 18 media representatives due to attend
  • Part of ongoing engagement between the MoJ, HMCTS and the media

The invitation was extended by the government as part of its ongoing court and tribunal reform programme, which will allow people more efficient access to justice.

The roundtable, to be held at the Ministry of Justice this afternoon (Thursday, 15 November), seeks to invite views and suggestions on how to maintain and enhance media access as modernisation continues.

Justice Minister, Lucy Frazer, said:

Open justice is a fundamental part of our legal system and impartial court reporting is crucial in maintaining public confidence.

As we continue to reform our courts and tribunals, it is important that we work with the media to ensure access is maintained and, where possible, enhanced. This roundtable is an opportunity to do just that and I’m grateful to all those sharing their views with me.

Legal Policy and Regulatory Affairs Director, News Media Association, Santha Rasaiah said:

Open Justice and court reporting cannot be compromised by Court Reform. The NMA therefore warmly welcome the minister’s initiative and the opportunity for local, regional and national news media to discuss direct the all important practicalities of maintaining media access and contemporaneous coverage.

The roundtable will be attended by representatives of a range of large and small news organisations from across England and Wales, including editors and reporters, to help support and promote the principle of open justice.

This is part of ongoing engagement between the Ministry of Justice, HM Courts and Tribunal Service (HMCTS) and the media to protect and enhance court access for journalists. It follows updated media guidance developed by a working group of media, MoJ and HMCTS representatives that was issued to all courts and tribunal staff last month.

This group is now being reshaped to consider how the reform programme can support and enhance media access as part of our wider commitment to open justice.

Notes to Editors
  1. Today’s roundtable is due to be attended by the representatives from the following media: Press Association; ITN; BBC; Evening Standard; News Media Association; Huffpost UK; Johnston Press; Express and Star (Wolverhampton); Coventry Evening Telegraph; News UK; Associated Newspapers; The Sun; Guardian Media Group; Manchester Evening News; Newsquest; Daily Telegraph; Buzzfeed; Society of Editors.
  2. The Government is investing £1 billion in reforming and modernising courts and tribunals. We want to ensure that those who come into contact with the justice system not only have a fair system but that the process is as simple and straightforward as possible:
  • Whether you have committed a minor motoring offence so that you can make your initial plea online. Some 1500 pleas are dealt with online every week. Court staff and the police automatically receive the completed online plea form as soon as the defendant has submitted it, reducing delays.
  • If you are a small business and you have a claim against a supplier you can make a small money claim online — with over 3,000 claims issued in the first month, cases moving through more quickly, and user satisfaction over 80% during the pre-launch pilot.
  • Or you are getting a divorce you can apply for it online – this process has cut errors in application forms from 40% to less than 1%, saving people time and trouble during a traumatic time.
  • Or your parent has died you can apply for probate online -which has also cut errors, sped up the process, and has a satisfaction rate of more than 90%.
« Older Entries