Bafana Bafana to host Brazil in March 2014

first_imgBafana Bafana will play five-time world champions Brazil on Wednesday, 5 March, 2014 at the FNB StadiumAfter beating the World Champions Spain 1-0, Bafana will have an opportunity to impress again when they host Brazil on March 5.The Samba Boys will be preparing for the 2014 World Cup as the host nation and one of the hot favourites, after winning the 2009 Confederations Cup. The President of the South African Football Association (Safa), Dr Danny Jordaan confirmed on the associations official website.“A good performance against Brazil will convince the doubters that South Africa is back,” he said.“This is one of the last games Brazil will play before the World Cup and they will be fielding a team of stars who will be absolutely determined to play at their best to make sure they are in the World Cup team. Our team on the other end is also hungry for success. It’s going to be a really good game.” The game is already being hailed to boast the best opponent, since Brazil is arguably the most famous team for neutrals in the country. “For a soccer fan there could be no better present for Christmas and New Year than a ticket to see Brazil,” added Jordaan.After failing to reach Brazil 2014, Safa is aiming for high profile opponents to excite local soccer fans.“If you want to be the best, you have to play the best and our announcement of Brazil today as Bafana Bafana’s opponents in March is testimony to our ambition of making our national side world beaters,” said Jordaan.“Matches between Bafana Bafana and Brazil have always been keenly contested, dating back to the Nelson Mandela Challenge matches and this will be the fourth meeting between the two sides. Each one of the previous matches have been hard fought and provided great entertainment. This one should be really special because the players all know this is an opportunity to shine.” Bafana coach Gordon Igesund wants to set the record straight after losing to Brazil 1-0 away from home, in his very first match in charge. “This is a huge game for us, good for the country and players. We have just beaten Spain and we want to give a good account of ourselves against the in-form Brazilians. To have them here as part of their preparations for the 2014 World Cup shows the amount of respect they have for us,” said Igesund. “I want to thank the President of Safa for making this game happen. “Tickets for the clash will cost R50, R100 and R200. They will go on sale immediately at Computicket outlets and at Shoprite, Checkers and Shoprite-Checkers stores around the country.Kick off is at 19h00.last_img read more

At National Symposium on Liberia’s Symbols, Sis Mary Laurene Brown to Deliver Keynote Address

first_imgOrganizers of the upcoming national symposium on Liberia’s symbols and national awards have selected renowned Catholic Sister Mary Laurene Browne to deliver the keynote address.The event is scheduled for Friday, June 6, 2014 at the Paynesville Town Hall, outside Monrovia. The Friday symposium is the first activity aimed at bringing people together to discuss the essence of the national awards project—the symbols and the possibilities for review. The symposium will be held on the theme, “Reviewing Liberia’s National Symbols to Renew National Identity,” and is expected to bring together Liberians from all walks of life including, women groups, the media, academia and others. Other speakers will include the South African Ambassador to Liberia, Masilo E. Mabeta, Liberia’s Ambassador to Senegal, Brahima Kaba as well as the chairperson of the History Department at the University of Liberia, Dr. William E. Allen, and former Associate Justice and current chairperson of the International Human Rights Commission, Cllr. Gladys Johnson. The one-day symposium, according to a statement, will set the stage for the review of Liberia’s national symbols and awards. Since the 1970’s, Liberians have been calling for changes in the national symbols and awards to reflect the historical realities of the citizenry. It has been argued that the current symbols and awards do not represent the cultural breadth and historical depth of Liberians.   In 1974, President William R. Tolbert Jr., through an Act of Legislature, established a commission to review the Liberian Constitution, national symbols, motto and anthem. The commission was headed by the then Minister of Postal Affairs, Mckinley Deshield and 50 other representatives from the existing counties. The commission concluded that Liberians did not need major changes in the symbols, but suggested changes in the motto and wordings of the seal, which were never done up to present. The report on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), referred to some national symbols as divisive and indicated they were partly responsible for the conflict in the country. The TRC-sponsored National Conference, in its Declaration, recommended among other things, a review of the national symbols and awards. Liberia’s 15-year development plan, the “Agenda for Transformation and the broader National Vision 2030 Initiative also recommend in their lists of priorities on peace and reconciliation sector interventions, “The establishment of a forum of Liberians of diverse backgrounds to discuss issues of national history, symbols and identity and reconciliation.” In reaction to this, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf on February 6 this year launched a National Symbol Review Project under the statutory authority of the Governance Commission with Dr. D. Elwood Dunn as the Project Coordinator.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Left-Handed Amino Acids Explained Naturally?

first_imgThe problem of left-handed amino acids in life’s proteins has remained an evolutionary conundrum for decades (see online book and earlier entries).  Another team has tried to tackle it, and boasted great things for their small returns.  Science Daily said,What is the origin of such asymmetry in biological material?  There are two competing hypotheses.  One postulates that life originated from a mixture containing 50% of one enantiomer and 50% of the other (known as a racemic mixture), and that homochirality progressively emerged during the course of evolution.  The other hypothesis suggests that asymmetry leading to homochirality preceded the appearance of life and was of cosmic origin.  This is supported by the detection of L excesses in certain amino acids extracted from primitive meteorites.  According to this scenario, these amino acids were synthesized non-racemically in interstellar space and delivered to Earth by cometary grains and meteorites.A team in France was able to reproduce the reported excess by warming up some comet-like ice.  The excess the article reported, though, is just 1.3%.  Life needs 100% of one hand or the other.  Their celebration outran their delivery: “This is the first time that a scenario that explains the origin of this asymmetry has been demonstrated using an experiment that reproduces an entirely natural synthesis,” they said.  They believe that circularly polarized light in stellar nebulae produced the slight excess.  “These findings imply that the selection of a single enantiomer for the molecules of life observed on Earth is not the result of chance but rather of a deterministic physical mechanism.”Sorry.  1.3% doesn’t cut it.  It’s like getting 1.3% of the way to Hawaii; you’re still going to drown.  The chance hypothesis is definitely out the window (online book), so astrobiologists are desperately looking for some deterministic mechanism that can deliver 100% pure single-handed amino acids.  How many more years since Pasteur showed this to be a fundamental separator of life from non-life do we give the Darwin Party overtime to figure it out?  Game over!  Charlie lost!    “Two competing hypotheses,” they said.  There’s the either-or fallacy in action.  The reasonable hypothesis they left out is intelligent design: single-handed proteins were purposefully chosen, because life cannot exist without it.  Their false dichotomy is like a choice between fish sticks and fish balls, when what you crave is beef.  Where’s the beef in this evolutionary myth?  It’s all racemic buns, and they deserve a swift paddling.(Visited 6 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

The boy who sees in pictures

first_img21 July 2011“Captain” Kgaugelo Mabjwe is one of eight students of the Umuzi Photo Club, based in the Johannesburg suburb of Braamfontein, who are currently exhibiting their work at the prestigious [email protected] on London’s South Bank.The Wembley to Soweto exhibition is a visual depiction of how photography helped the eight teenagers to unleash their talent and realise their dreams. The exhibition runs until 24 July, and admission is free.The brainchild of internationally renowned photographer John Cole and actor/director David Westhead of Wilton Pictures, the project is also supported by Kweku Mandela, the grandson of former president Nelson Mandela.Mabjwe attended his first workshop with Umuzi (isiZulu, meaning “village”) in 2009. The photo club had been started in the same year by financial analyst David Dini, “to give a voice to young people through the medium of photography”, said Emily Coppel, the project’s facilitator.But the really big break for Mabjwe, Patience Ndhlovu, Siyabonga Sepotokele, Tshepang Masemola, Joao Nzina, Shoneez Cassim and Thapelo Motsumi came when Cole and Westhead approached Umuzi Club.Cole is the photographer who took a shot of the Free Mandela concert, held in 1988 at Wembley Stadium to mark Mandela’s 70th birthday, and which is now on display in the Nobel laureate’s home in Johannesburg.Witness to the World CupEarly in 2010 Cole and Westhead held an in-depth four-week workshop with the eight students, before asking them to be official witnesses to the 2010 Fifa World Cup, which took place in South Africa in June and July that year.The aim of the project was to teach disadvantaged young people how to feed their families with their cameras, said Cole on the exhibition’s website.The teenagers attended the official World Cup opening and recorded some extraordinary images with the wide-eyed innocence and honesty so typical of people their age.Now, the Wembley to Soweto exhibition, which opened on 7 July, is showing 52 of the best pictures.An excited Westhead spoke to Leicester Square Television (LSQ TV) before the opening, relating how this “small” project has snowballed into other projects and opportunities for the eight youngsters. He believes great things are still going to come from them.“The pictures speak for themselves. It’s wonderful. It warrants being exhibited. They [the students] are absolute dynamite.”In the same interview, Cole described his experiences with the group, noting that he was constantly surprised in the best possible sense by what came out of the project.“Some of these pictures are really gritty, really gutsy – the kind of reportage that I cut my teeth on and what makes me love photography so much.”Three of the eight, Thapelo Motsumi, Patience Ndhlovu and Shoneez Cassim, attended the exhibition’s official opening in London. While in the city, they also had the chance to impart some of their photographic knowledge to other kids, this time in London’s East End areas of Streatham and Newham.The young travellers also attended an exclusive photo shoot with renowned actor Alan Rickman, better known for his portrayal of Professor Severus Snape in the Harry Potter film series.As Cassim said in during a LSQ TV interview: “Now when I take a picture it is not just about taking a photograph anymore – it is about asking myself, what can I tell, what will people see when they see it?”International exposureMotsumi was interviewed by Outlook, a programme on the BBC World Service with a listenership of 40-million, where he was able to share the experience of growing up in Johannesburg’s bustling Yeoville suburb, and feeling the weight of a real single-lens reflex camera in his hands for the first time.That was in 2009, when he joined Mabjwe and the group for a workshop at Umuzi. Up to that point he did not think much about photography, he admitted, rather seeing himself as becoming an artist one day.He now refers to his camera as his baby, his friend. “A camera is a powerful tool. You can change people’s lives with it. You can make a difference, you can tell stories with it.”As a result of the Wembley to Soweto exposure, Motsumi has already successfully completed several paid assignments for Marie Claire women’s magazine, South African Breweries, mobile provider Vodacom and Parliament. He continues to do workshops and assignments for Umuzi.Said Cole: “If this has given them some confidence, then I have succeeded. That’s really the important thing. Photography is almost secondary.”On site in AlexMeanwhile, back at home in South Africa, Mabjwe and the rest continue with workshops and programmes offered by Umuzi, and identify for themselves the social issues they wish to address through the lens.Over the July school holidays, the Umuzi team was on site in Alexandra township, east of the city, to record the problems of school drop-outs and teenage pregnancies at the Alex East Bank Clinic.It is an issue close to the heart of the group because it is one of the community’s biggest challenges.“Here in Alex, teenage pregnancy is a big problem, especially at the East Bank High School,” said Precious Ntlabathi, who is doing her first Umuzi workshop.She attributed the problem to kids not knowing enough about the risks, peer pressure, drug and alcohol abuse. “Through my photographs, I hope to raise awareness.”“The idea is for students to start thinking critically about issues affecting them and to become advocates for change through their eyewitness accounts,” added Coppel.Recently, students did a presentation to Parliament on the lack of service delivery in the country. They’ve also exhibited their work in galleries in New York, Antwerp and Johannesburg.After the workshops, exhibitions are usually held in the community to create social awareness through the evocative images.“The hope is to engage the media and people to talk about these issues affecting young people and to bring about some change,” said Coppel.Becoming an Umuzi studentUmuzi participants undergo an intensive selection and interview process. Club staff visit schools in the Johannesburg area, usually at morning assembly, where they introduce the club to the pupils. Afterwards, application forms are handed out to interested scholars.Those selected show enthusiasm and an aptitude for photography. But, said Coppel, it should not be to the detriment of their school work. The target group is Grade 10, pupils around 16 years of age.From the basic workshops, teenagers showing potential in photography can follow Umuzi’s Leadership through Photography course. The club also assists, through various sponsorships, in putting some of the students through formal photographic courses.“The idea is that they learn to become professional,” said Coppel.And today, young Mabjwe, for one, sees himself as someone with a future. From a Diepsloot youngster with no real plans for the future, he now harbours big dreams.“I love photography. Every day I think about taking good pictures. I see myself overseas, working as a freelance photographer one day.”And he has this to say about his work: “I can speak with my pictures. There are many stories inside my pictures.”MediaClubSouthAfrica.com reporter – get free high-resolution photos and professional feature articles from Brand South Africa’s media service.last_img read more

Pattern: A Bundle of Data Mining Modules for Python

first_img7 Types of Video that will Make a Massive Impac… Related Posts How to Write a Welcome Email to New Employees? Pattern consists of six main modules:pattern.web: A toolkit that includes APIs for various Web services, including Google, Gmail, Bing, Twitter Wikipedia and Flickr. It has its own HTML parser and Web spider.pattern.table: A module for working with tabular data, used for storing data from the pattern.web module.pattern.en: A natural language processing toolkit for English.pattern.search: A module containing a search algorithm.pattern.vector: A module containing various tools for analyzing the text of a document.pattern.graph: A module for data visualization using Canvas. Tags:#hack#Tools Why You Love Online Quizzes Pattern is a collection of open source (BSD license) web mining modules for Python from the Computational Linguistics and Psycholinguistics Research Center. It contains tools for data retrieval, text analysis and data visualization and comes with over 30 sample scripts. klint finley Growing Phone Scams: 5 Tips To Avoidlast_img read more

Ronaldo says his ban for pushing referee is ‘persecution’

first_imgReal Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo, left, celebrates after scoring during the Spanish Supercup, first leg, soccer match between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, Aug. 13, 2017. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)MADRID — Cristiano Ronaldo has bitterly criticized his five-game suspension for pushing a referee who had sent him off, describing the ban as “persecution.”Ronaldo wrote on his Instagram account on Wednesday that “it is impossible to remain silent in this situation, 5 games!! It seems exaggerated and ridiculous to me, this is called persecution!”ADVERTISEMENT WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games MOST READ Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief Read Next Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. center_img Ronaldo was given an additional four-match ban for shoving the referee in the back after he was shown the red card.Ronaldo concluded his Instagram message with “Thanks to my teammates and fans for their support.”The message was accompanied by a photo of the moment when referee Ricardo de Burgos Bengoetxea showed Ronaldo the red card.Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane has also criticized the extended ban of his best player.ADVERTISEMENT UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension Ronaldo’s outburst came after the Spanish soccer federation ratified his suspension, which was announced on Monday.The Real Madrid forward will miss the second leg of the Spanish Super Cup against Barcelona later on Wednesday. Madrid holds a 3-1 advantage.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutHe will also miss the first four matches of the Spanish league, which Madrid opens on Sunday at Deportivo La Coruna.Ronaldo was suspended for one match after being sent off during Sunday’s first leg of the Spanish Super Cup. Spanish media reports said Madrid appealed Ronaldo’s second yellow card, when the Portugal forward was booked for diving. Flags of SEA Games countries raised at Athletes Village LATEST STORIES US men’s basketball enters a new world—without its stars Man sworn in as lawyer by judge who sentenced him to prison as a teen 20 years ago View commentslast_img read more

Victor Oladipo scores 26, leads Pacers past Magic

first_imgCayetano: 4 social media groups behind SEA Games ‘sabotage’ CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Pacers: Indiana has made 11 or more 3-pointers in six of its last nine games.UP NEXT:Magic: Host Oklahoma City on Wednesday night.Pacers: At Houston on Wednesday night. Indiana Pacers guard Victor Oladipo (4) loses the ball in front of Orlando Magic forward Jonathon Simmons (17) during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Indianapolis, Monday, Nov. 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)INDIANAPOLIS — Victor Oladipo scored 26 points and Bojan Bogdanovic added 22 to help the Indiana Pacers beat the Magic 121-109 on Monday night, handing Orlando its ninth straight loss.Orlando cut the Pacers lead to 95-91 five minutes into the fourth quarter, but Indiana put together a 13-0 run that lasted nearly three minutes. The Pacers’ fourth quarter surge on offense ultimately proved to be the difference in a game where the Magic fought desperately to snap their losing streak. Oladipo, who was back in the lineup after missing Indiana’s last game due to a bruised right knee, made his first 11 shots before finishing the game 11-for-14.ADVERTISEMENT Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH The Pacers had five players in double figures as Domantas Sabonis scored 19 points while Myles Turner and Lance Stephenson each added 18.Orlando gave Indiana everything it could handle through the first three quarters. The Magic managed to close the deficit and trail 85-84 heading into the fourth quarter after falling behind by double digits in the third quarter. But the Pacers hit their stride during the final 12 minutes and outscored the Magic 36-25 in the fourth.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutJonathan Simmons led Orlando with 21 points.STEADY PACE Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 Read Next View comments LATEST STORIES Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort Since losing 118-95 to Houston on Nov. 12, the Pacers are 6-1. During the same seven game stretch, Indiana has scored 100 or more points in each of its six wins. The Pacers — who average 108 points per game — are now 11-4 in games where they score 100 or more points.MAGIC SPELLDating back to the 2012-13 season, the Pacers have won 17 of their last 19 regular season meetings with Orlando, including the last six matchups with the Magic, leaving former Pacers coach Frank Vogel winless against his old team.TIP-INSMagic: Orlando has now lost nine straight games during a stretch in which it is 2-11 in its last 13 games. … The Magic are now 3-12 when allowing their opponent to score 100 or more points. … With 16 3-pointers Monday night, the Magic have now made at least one three in 841 consecutive games, the fifth longest streak in the NBA.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. IOC judges back truthful whistleblower, ban 5 more Russianslast_img read more

8 days agoTottenham boss Pochettino: I don’t want to buy

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Tottenham boss Pochettino: I don’t want to buyby Paul Vegas8 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveTottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino admits they will not try to buy in January – if the decision is down to him.Jan Vertonghen, Toby Alderweireld, Christian Eriksen have entered the final year of their contracts and can leave for nothing in the summer, while the likes of Danny Rose, Victor Wanyama and Serge Aurier failed to secure exits before the season started.Asked ahead of Saturday’s visit of Watford if the club would be busy in the January window, Pochettino said: “No, I don’t believe so. I believe in the players we have, the players that are at Tottenham today.”I respect the opinion of people who say we need to change something, in or out. But if it is my decision, I am going to stick with players because I know they have the quality. It’s only to unlock some situations that are going on in their minds. We have great quality to achieve the things we are expected to.” last_img read more

Video: Watch Iowa State G Deonte Burton Thrown Down An Awesome Windmill Dunk While Wearing Timberlands

first_imgDeonte Burton dunks in Timberlands.It’s been a pretty good 24 hours for the dunk. There was, of course, Zach LaVine winning the NBA Dunk Contest in spectacular fashion on Saturday night. There was also Kentucky center Willie Cauley-Stein saying he’s “just going to start dunking on people” and former Michigan wide receiver Devin Funchess showing off his athleticism.  There’s also this: Iowa State guard Deonte Burton throwing down an awesome windmill dunk while sporting Timberland boots. That’s just ridiculous. Iowa State (18-6, 8-4 Big 12) is set to play Oklahoma State (17-8, 7-6 Big 12) on Wednesday at 9 p.m. E.T. The game will be televised on ESPNU.last_img

Business ties complicate Muslim states response to Rohingya

first_imgDUBAI, United Arab Emirates – When Rohingya Muslims fled persecution and slaughter in Myanmar in past decades, tens of thousands found refuge in Saudi Arabia, home to Islam’s holiest sites. This time around, Muslim leaders from the Persian Gulf to Pakistan have offered little more than condemnation and urgently needed humanitarian aid.The lack of a stronger response by Muslim-majority countries partly comes down to their lucrative business interests in Southeast Asia, experts say. Much of the Middle East is also buckling under its own refugee crisis sparked by years of upheaval in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Afghanistan.More than 500,000 people — roughly half the Rohingya Muslim population in Myanmar — have fled to neighbouring Bangladesh over the past year, mostly in the last month. The United Nations human rights chief has described Myanmar’s military crackdown and allied Buddhist mob attacks as “a textbook example of ethnic cleansing.”Saudi Arabia is already home to around a quarter-million Burmese people who took refuge in the kingdom under the late King Faisal in the 1960s. The kingdom pledged $15 million in aid to the Rohingya this week.As the world’s biggest oil exporter, Saudi Arabia competes with Russia to be China’s top crude supplier. Expanding its footprint there requires Myanmar’s help.A recently opened pipeline running through Myanmar , also known as Burma, carries oil from Arab countries and the Caucuses to China’s landlocked Yunnan Province. The 771-kilometre (479-mile) pipeline starts at the Bay of Bengal in western Myanmar’s Rakhine state, from where most of the Rohingya have been forced out.In 2011, a subsidiary of state oil giant Saudi Aramco and PetroChina, an arm of China’s state-owned CNPC, signed a deal to supply China’s southwestern Yunnan Province with up to 200,000 barrels per day of crude oil, just under half of the pipeline’s capacity.Saudi Aramco did not immediately respond to a request for comment on shipments through the pipeline.“One could argue that Saudi Arabia is less likely to be outspoken on this (Rohingya) issue because it actually relies on the Burmese government to protect the physical security of the pipeline,” said Bo Kong, a senior associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies who has written about China’s global petroleum policy.The pipeline became operational in April following years of delays. It allows tankers to bypass the Strait of Malacca, cutting typical voyages by about seven days. A natural gas pipeline from Myanmar’s Shwe gas field runs alongside it.Daniel Wagner, founder of consulting firm Country Risk Solutions, said Saudi Arabia is moving ahead with its economic and political agenda in Mynamar and Southeast Asia, yet can still “claim to have stood the moral high-ground” by previously taking in refugees and providing financial aid.“The important point is that natural gas and oil flows through Rakhine state,” he said.Muslim-majority countries have been increasingly promising aid as the number of refugees swells in Bangladesh.Azerbaijan, which also appears to be exporting crude to China through the pipeline, has ordered 100 tons of humanitarian aid to be dispatched.Turkey, which like Iran jostles with Saudi Arabia to be the Islamic world’s centre of influence, has mobilized millions of meals for refugees in Bangladesh and vowed to maintain a refugee camp there. It has also provided clothing, part of more than 150 tons of humanitarian aid supplied overall.Iran, Saudi Arabia’s regional rival, has sent at least 40 tons of aid. Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei recently took a swipe at other Muslim countries with business interests in Myanmar, urging them to ramp up pressure on the government there.“There are tens of Muslim countries and governments, some of whom have financial and economic transactions with them,” he said. “If we sit somewhere and engage in condemnations, what is the use of this?”Images of burnt Muslim villages in Myanmar and of traumatized and often barefoot Rohingya women, children and elderly crossing into Bangladesh sparked protests in several Muslim countries.A large rally was held to denounce the crisis in Indonesia, which is working to boost bilateral trade with Myanmar to $1 billion a year.In Pakistan’s largest city of Karachi, tens of thousands protested. Lawmaker Farhatullah Babar of the Pakistan People’s Party has pushed his government to suspend or at least slow the implementation of defence agreements worth hundreds of millions of dollars with Myanmar.He told The Associated Press that an official responded to his request by saying Pakistan is pressing Myanmar through diplomatic channels to stop the violence.“Pakistan should not be seen as strengthening a regime that is using weapons against its own people,” Babar said. He declined to elaborate on the details of the defence agreements.A report by IHS Jane’s in February said Myanmar two years ago bought 16 JF-17 Thunder aircraft, co-developed by Pakistan and China. The defence weekly said Myanmar is now in advanced negotiations with Pakistan for licensed production of the fighter jet’s advanced third-generation variant.The 57-nation Organization of Islamic Cooperation held an emergency session on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in New York this week to discuss the crisis.The organization, headquartered in Saudi Arabia, issued a lengthy statement earlier this month expressing “grave concern” over the exodus of Rohingya. But unless its member states take tougher action on their own, there is little the OIC can do to pressure Myanmar’s government.Jason von Meding, a specialist in disaster response at the University of Newcastle in Australia, said religious differences are not the only reason Rohingya are being forced out.The government in Myanmar has designated 3 million acres in Rakhine state for development of the area’s rich mineral resources, he said. Farmers and vulnerable minority groups in the state have protested such schemes, calling them land grabs for which they receive little to no compensation.“There’s no question that there is a lot of religious tension and ethnic division in society there,” von Meding said. “The problem is that it’s a convenient excuse for some people to get on with some very dirty political and business dealings behind the scenes.”___Associated Press writers Zarar Khan in Islamabad, Pakistan; Suzan Fraser in Ankara, Turkey; and Nasser Karimi in Tehran contributed to this report.___Follow Aya Batrawy on Twitter at https://twitter.com/ayaelblast_img read more