Displaying items by tag: criticism
Israel’s foreign minister, Yair Lapid, has called the Biden administration’s plan to reopen the US consulate in Jerusalem a ‘bad idea’ that could ‘destabilize’ Israel’s new government. He said it would send the wrong message not only to the region or to the Palestinians, but also to other countries, adding, ‘We don’t want this to happen’. His comments come after Biden reportedly discussed the issue with Israel’s ultraconservative prime minister, Naftali Bennett, last week at the White House. The Times of Israel cited unnamed officials as saying the Biden administration agreed to wait to open the consulate until after Bennett’s fragile new government passes a budget in November.
A float depicting Archbishop Charles J Scicluna will take part in Valletta’s carnival parade, despite criticism. Rayvin Galea, the artist behind the float’s design, hopes to get across various issues which he feels have not properly been addressed by the Church. They include its opposition to same-sex marriage, depicted on his float through a figurine of a gay couple on top of a wedding cake, while the Church’s opposition to IVF takes the form of two horned cherubs. Scicluna will wear a military uniform, which represents the Church’s conservative stance on many social issues. Missing will be the words ‘St Joseph’s Home’ above the Scicluna effigy, which would have been a reference to the sexual abuse of children in the late 80s at the church orphanage. The float also features Lady Justice with a blindfold, a balance, and a sword, showcasing the lack of justice received by the victims of the abuse.
Politicians are challenging Donald Trump’s relationship with Saudi Arabia. Senator Elizabeth Warren said that the president has refused to halt weapons sales because he is more interested in appeasing US defence contractors than in holding the Saudis accountable for Jamal Khashoggi’s murder or for thousands of Yemeni civilians killed by those weapons. Senator Bernie Sanders is equally critical of Trump’s relationship with the Saudis, citing it as an example of his liking of foreign dictators. The Senate voted 63-37 to run with Sanders’ resolution to force Trump to end US support for the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen. That same day, it emerged that Riyadh had confirmed a $15 billion deal with defence contractor Lockheed Martin for a missile defence system. One observer said Trump’s determination to preserve Saudi arms sales was an example of the ‘stranglehold of defence contractors on our military policy’.