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Israeli delegation to visit UAE with top Trump aides next week | Israel News

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Top US officials will escort an Israeli delegation to the United Arab Emirates on Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said, in what will the first-ever commercial flight between the two countries in the Middle East.

The high-level meeting would also be the first between the three parties since US President Donald Trump announced on August 13 a Washington-brokered accord on the normalisation of ties between Israel and the UAE.

The UAE-Israeli deal, which still awaits negotiations on details such as opening embassies, trade and travel links before it is officially signed, was slammed by the Palestinians as the latest “betrayal” of their cause by an Arab state.

In a video statement on Tuesday, Netanyahu said White House senior adviser and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien, US Middle East envoy Avi Berkowitz and other US officials will travel together to the UAE with an Israeli delegation led by National Security Adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat.

The US and Israeli officials will fly on board an Israeli airliner directly from Tel Aviv to Abu Dhabi.

Talks will focus on ways to promote Israeli-UAE cooperation in sectors such as aviation and tourism, trade, finance, health, energy and security, Netanyahu said.

“This is a historic agreement. It will bring growth engines … I hope other countries in our region will join the circle of peace.”

The UAE’s WAM news agency and Israel’s Ynet news website reported earlier on Tuesday that the ministers of defence of both countries – Mohammed bin Ahmad Al Bawardi and Benny Gantz – spoke on the phone for the first time publicly.

‘Lose-lose situation’

The deal would make the UAE only the third Arab country to forge ties with Israel, after Egypt and Jordan.

However, the prospect that the agreement could grant the Gulf power access to advanced weaponry previously denied to it has upset Israel, and could emerge as a sticking point in negotiations.

Last week, Trump announced that an agreement was under review for the UAE to buy the F-35fighter jets.

But despite the fact that the US has sold the F-35 to allies – including South Korea, Japan and Israel – sales to the Gulf require a deeper review because of US policy for Israel to maintain a military advantage in the Middle East.

During a visit to the region to showcase US support for Israeli-Arab ties, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo assured Israel on Monday it would retain a military advantage in the region under any future arms deal with the UAE.

Meanwhile, the Palestinians warned the Trump administration against trying to sideline them in its Middle East diplomatic push.

“Recruiting Arabs to recognise Israel and open embassies does not make Israel a winner,” Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said in an interview with Reuters.

“You are putting the whole region in a lose-lose situation because you are designing the road for a forever conflict in the region.”

SOURCE:
Al Jazeera and news agencies





Source – www.aljazeera.com

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Another blow as Judge throws out Kiggundu’s lawyer Muwema

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When court sat on Friday to hear the Kiggundu’s application to stop independent audit, he did not have a written application, and Justice Henry Adonyo instead ordered the plaintiff’s lawyer Fred Muwema to go make a written application seeking court to dismiss the audit and return to court on September 30 for a hearing of the application. But this adds more pressure on Kiggundu who is choking with the loans.

On 31 August, the judge ordered the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Uganda (ICPAU) to carry out and independent audit into the accounts of the businessman and financial statements exchanged between the two parties, and present a report to court.

When asked by journalists why he has filed for an application seeking dismissal of the audit, Fred Muwema had this to say. “We are saying that let the validity and legality of those credit facilities (loans) be decided first before you can audit” He said.

The ruling on the application of the main suit to determine whether the businessman owes loan arrears to the bank is set for 5th October 2020, after which a date for hearing of the case will be set.

Background

Hamis Kiggundu through his companies Ham enterprises and Kiggs International (U) ltd sued DTB branches in Kenya and Uganda for deducting money from his accounts something which the bank contends and said they only acted as per the loan agreement of deducting 30% from Kiggundu’s accounts to recover the credit facilities rendered to him between February 2011 and September 2016

But Court documents filed by the bank in their defense shows that Kiggundu, between February 2011 and September 2016, was granted various credit facilities by the said DTB Banks.

First, via Ham Enterprises Limited, Kiggundu obtained a loan of $6,663,453 and another Sh2.5bn from the DTB (U) to finance his projects in the real estate business.

Later, according to New Vision, he got a facility worth $4.5m through Kiggs International (U) Limited from DTB (K) and mortgaged his properties, which include Plot 328 located at Kawuku on Block 248 Kyadondo, three plots that include 36, 37 and 38 on Folio 1533 Victoria Crescent II situated in Kyadondo and land on Makerere Hill Road on LRV 3716 Folio 10 Plot 923 Block 9.

Documents show that as of January 21, 2020, Kiggundu was in default on payment obligations of $6.298m on the loan facility of $6.663m, as well as sh2.885b on the demand overdraft facility of sh1.5b and the temporary demand overdraft facility of sh1b.

The banks say that Kiggundu was in default on the payment of another $3.662m out of a total loan facility of $4m and another $458,604 on a loan facility of $500,000, as of January 21, 2020.

The DTB consequently served him with a demand notice to either pay up or lose the assets that he submitted as collateral security. The bank threatened to attach a plot on Makerere Hill Road and other prime commercial properties.

Analysts says that Kiggundu’s lawyer is playing delaying tactics aimed at stopping the independent audit as ordered by the court earlier. Kiggundu had wanted court to believe his own audit of loan transactions, but that would amount to injustice to the banks that gave him money-DTB Uganda and DTB Kenya.

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Minister Rukutana charged with attempted murder, remanded

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The state minister for Labour, Gender and Economic Development Mwesigwa Rukutana has been remanded to Kyamugorani prison in Mbarara district.

Rukutana appeared before Ntungamo Grade One magistrate Nazifah Namayanja this afternoon from where he was charged with seven offences related to attempted murder, assault, malicious damage, and threatening violence.

Rukutana was captured in a video that went viral on social media showing him grabbing a gun from one of his bodyguards and started shooting at a vehicle belonging to supporters of his political rival Naome Kabasharira. At the time of the incident, Rukutana had just lost the Rushenyi country NRM flag to Kabasharira.

The prosecution alleges that on September 5, 2020, at Kagugu village in Ntungamo district, Rukutana and others still at large assaulted Julius Niwamanya and threatened to kill or injure him together with three others. The others are Stuart Kamukama, Dan Rwibirungi, and Moses Kamukama. 

It is also alleged that Rukutana also willfully and unlawfully damaged a motor vehicle registration number UAR 840X Toyota Rav 4 type which belongs to Moses Muhumuza.

According to the Judiciary public relations officer, Jameson Karemani, Rukutana has not taken a plea of these charges against him since they can only be tried by the chief magistrate who was not in court today.

As a result, the magistrate decided to send him to Kyamugorani, awaiting his return to court on Tuesday.      





Source – observer.ug

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Lira district headquarters closed over COVID-19

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Lira district headquarters have been closed after one staff tested positive for COVID-19 last week. 

On Monday morning, district staff were blocked at the gate with only the deputy chief administrative officer, his secretary and the receptionist allowed access to their offices. 

Paul Samuel Mbiiwa, the deputy chief administrative officer says that only heads of department will be allowed at the headquarters while the rest will work from home. He adds that the restriction will help to curb the spread of the virus.

“You see corona is not a joke. We have taken a step at fighting it and that is why you are seeing the staff outside. Even in my office here I do not want people to come if there is anything we can discuss on the phone.”

Francis Okello Olwa, a senior community development officer who doubles as the district spokesperson says that the entire district offices will be fumigated and closed for two days.

Health authorities in the district are planning to take samples from all the staff because they could have interacted with the one who tested positive. Currently, there are 19 COVID-19 patients under treatment at Lira regional referral hospital.     

On Sunday four health workers at the hospital tested positive for COVID-19. Dr Patrick Odongo, a senior medical officer at the hospital also succumbed to the virus.  





Source – observer.ug

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