Friday, 28 September 2012

Seminar on discrimination against Christians in Europe

This advertisement caught my eye in the European Parliament the other day. Below is the agenda. I would have thought that 'Discrimination against Christians' would be better English, but these things often get mangled in translation. Nevertheless, I am sure this will be an interesting seminar.

Seminar on
Discrimination of Christians in Europe

Seminar in cooperation with the Members of the European Parliament from the EPP Group, ECR
Group and COMECE

2 October 2012
9:30 - 13:00


9:30 Welcome Speech

Jan Olbrycht MEP, Vice-Chairman of the EPP Group responsible for
Interreligious Dialogue and Religious Affairs (EPP Group)

Konrad Szymanski MEP (ECR Group)

9:45-10:45 Session I:
Reports on the situation of Christians in Europe

Chair Jan Olbrycht MEP (EPP Group)

Dr. Gregor Puppinck, European Center for Law and Justice (France)

A perspective from Strasbourg
Dr. Martin Kugler, Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination against
Christians in Europe (Austria)

Presentation of the 2011 Report of the Observatory on Intolerance and
Discrimination against Christians in Europe

John Deighan, Parliamentary Officer of the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland

Respective report

Daniel Lipsic, Member of Parliament, former Minister of Justice of Slovakia
(Slovak Republic)
10:45-11:45 Session II:
Freedom of religion in Europe: positive developments and
current challenges

Chair Konrad Szymanski MEP (ECR Group)

Francisco Javier Borrego Borrego, Former Judge at European Court for
Human Rights (Spain)

Rocco Buttiglione, Professor of political science at Saint Pius V University in
Rome, Member of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, Member of the
Italian Parliament (Italy)

Mons. Florian Kolfhaus, Official at the Secretariat of State Holy See (Italy)

11:45-12:30 Interventions of MEPs


Mario Mauro MEP, Head of the Italian PdL Delegation in the EPP Group
Charles Tannock MEP (ECR Group)

Silvia Costa MEP (S&D Group)
Anna Zaborska (EPP Group)


Laima Liucija Andrikiene MEP (EPP Group)

Mons. Piotr Mazurkiewicz, COMECE Secretary General

Monday, 10 September 2012

New book on Stalin's war on nature

The release of this new book, written by Scottish Conservative MEP Struan Stevenson, has caught my eye this week.

Here is the blurb from Amazon:
As undisputed leader of the Soviet Union, Joseph Stalin was directly responsible for the deaths of up to 60 million of his fellow citizens, a truly horrific figure which confirms him as one of the most notorious mass murderers in history.
But Stalin not only waged war against his own people he and his successors regarded nature as an enemy that could be overcome by the might of Soviet technology and the brute force of slave labour. The building of vast networks of canals and the diversion of major rivers has created untold environmental damage, whilst Soviet nuclear and biological weapons programmes contaminated vast areas and caused unimaginable agony for human and animal life.
In this book Struan Stevenson travels to the former Soviet republics of Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgystan and Tajikistan. From the Semipalatinsk region of east Kazakhstan, where over 600 nuclear tests were carried out between 1949 and 1990, to the Aral Sea, the desiccation of which has reduced what was the world's fourth largest inland body of water to half the size it was just 50 years ago, he presents a grim catalogue of environmental catastrophe.
As well as talking with those whose lives continue to be cruelly affected by this terrible legacy, he also meets those who are trying to deal with its wider consequences as it threatens to impact far beyond the steppes of Central Asia.
Despite almost insurmountable challenges, however, there ultimately is a strong message of hope as both local and international organizations face up to the effects of disastrous and inhuman Soviet policies.
Buy it here: