Thursday 27 September 2012

Arab league seeks criminalization of blasphemy, USA stand firm on its defense of free speech

Arabs seek blasphemy ban; US, Russia spar on Syria

Associated Press

UNITED NATIONS (AP) -- The head of the Arab League called Wednesday for the international community to criminalize blasphemy, warning that insults to religion pose a serious threat to global peace and security. The comments put him squarely at odds with the United States and many of its western allies, which are resolutely opposed to restrictions on freedom of expression.

Also at Wednesday's U.N. Security Council session, the U.S. and Russia offered starkly differing assessments of the situation in Syria, underscoring the global body's inability to unite around a strategy to end the Arab country's civil war. Whereas Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton decried Syrian President Bashar Assad's "murdering of his own people," Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov accused the U.S. and other countries of encouraging terrorism.

But perhaps the most controversial argument came from the Arab League's Nabil Elaraby, who told the U.N. Security Council that if the west has criminalized acts that result in bodily harm, it must also criminalize acts that insult or cause offense to religions. He condemned the violence that erupted throughout the Muslim world in response to an anti-Islam film produced in the United States. But, he said that unless blasphemy laws are enacted and enforced, similar incidents could happen again.

"While we fully reject such actions that are not justifiable in any way, we would like to ring the warning bell," Elaraby said. "We are warning that offending religions, faiths and symbols is indeed a matter that threatens in international peace and security now."

"If the international community has criminalized bodily harm, it must just as well criminalize psychological and spiritual harm," he said. "The League of Arab States calls for the development of an international legal framework which is binding ... in order to confront insulting religions and ensuring that religious faith and its symbols are respected."

Elaraby maintained that the 21-member Arab League valued the freedom of speech but stressed that "we don't see any relation between freedom of expression which aims at enriching culture and building civilization of the one hand and activities that merely offend and insult the beliefs, culture and civilization of others."

Individual members of the Arab League, including Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, have issued similar calls.

Elaraby spoke at a special session of the Security Council called to discuss developments in the Middle East, including the crisis in Syria and the stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Speaking later at the same meeting, Clinton did not address Elaraby's comments. On Tuesday, though, President Barack Obama gave a powerful defense of free speech rights as he spoke to the U.N. General Assembly. He strongly defended the U.S. Constitution's guarantee of the freedom of expression, "even views that we profoundly disagree with."

Clinton said the protests exposed "deep rifts" within the Arab Spring's new democracies that extremists were able to exploit. She said the U.S. would work closely with the region's new democracies, specifically on helping them restore security. Threats she cited included extremists trying to "hijack" Tunisia's democratic progress and al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula's dangerous presence in Yemen.

"The riots underscored the challenges of building security forces focused on protecting people, not regimes," Clinton told foreign ministers from the 14 other U.N. Security Council members. "Training, funding, and equipment will only go so far. It takes the political will to make hard choices and tough changes that will build strong institutions and lasting security."

On Syria, Clinton joined other ministers in complaining that the U.N. Security Council has been unable to unify behind a plan to end the violence in Syria and promote a political transition. Clinton said the council was "paralyzed." French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said it was "shocking" that the council had been unable to act. Advocates say almost 30,000 people have died since March 2011, but China and Russia have blocked Security Council action on Syria.

Without mentioning any country by name, Lavrov blamed the U.S. and its European and Arab allies for the continued violence.

"A significant share of responsibility for the continuing bloodshed rests upon the states that instigate the opponents of Bashar Assad to reject the cease-fire and dialogue and at the same time to demand unconditional capitulation of the regime," he said. "Such an approach is unrealistic and in fact it encourages terrorist methods that the armed opposition is using more and more often."

Earlier Wednesday, Clinton said western and northern African nations need to tighten security on their borders to combat the increased movement of extremists, weapons and drugs. She called the Sahel region is a "powder keg" of hunger, displacement and insecurity, and said the world can't ignore the situation.

TBN to start promoting apostasy and ecumenism from the holy land :Trinity Broadcasting Network Purchases Property for Studio in Jerusalem


Roger Oakland's letter to Paul Crouch regarding TBN promoting Roman Catholic dogma

Trinity Broadcasting Network Purchases Property for Studio in Jerusalem

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 26, 2012 /Christian Newswire/ -- Trinity Broadcasting Network, the world's largest Christian broadcaster, announced that it has purchased property in Jerusalem where it will build a state-of-the-art studio to produce programming for TBN Shalom and its other global networks. For nearly 40 years TBN has enjoyed a close relationship with the people of Israel, and last year, through its affiliate in Russia, launched the TBN Shalom Network to broadcast Christian programming to the millions of Russian Jews who have returned to Israel over the past 30 years.

Matt Crouch, TBN's Vice President of Administration, said establishing a production facility in Israel is a gesture of love that has long been a dream of his parents, TBN founders Paul and Jan Crouch. "My parents have hosted scores of tours to the Holy Land, helping thousands of Christians understand and embrace God's great love for this land and people," Matt said recently in a broadcast from the new property in Israel. "In the late 1970s they even hosted a series of programs from the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem, beaming them back to the states via satellite. Soon they'll have the joy of knowing that everyday the message of the gospel is being sent all over the world from the City of David."

Matt, who with his wife Laurie recently led over 1,800 people on a record-setting tour of the Holy Land, explained that TBN's new Jerusalem facility will be located on a mountain whose Hebrew name means grace. "From this mountain the message of grace will go, literally, around the world," he said "The message of grace will emanate from the hill of grace, just as it did when Jesus ministered here."

Dr. Paul Crouch, who joined his son for the historic announcement, noted that unlike most land in Israel, which is leased from the state, TBN was able to purchase the property for the studio outright, giving the network a permanent location in Israel. "For generations to come," he said, "this facility in the heart of Israel will stand as a testament to the faithfulness of our many partners, whose prayer and financial commitment are enabling TBN to broadcast hope and healing to every corner of the earth."

Pastor Rick Warren Hospitalized, Awaiting Diagnosis

Pastor Rick Warren Hospitalized, Awaiting Diagnosis  

By Lillian Kwon , Christian Post Reporter

September 26, 2012|8:52 am

Pastor Rick Warren of Saddleback Church was hospitalized Tuesday after experiencing pain in his arms.

The renowned Southern California pastor will be undergoing a series of tests to determine what the cause is though the doctor's "diagnostic guess" is that he has an inner ear virus that may have spread to the nerves in his neck and down his arms.

"[P]ray for a quick and accurate diagnosis, a fast remedy," he asked his megachurch in an email Tuesday late afternoon.

Warren explained that he began to feel under the weather last weekend. Then on Monday night, he started to experience pain down both his arms and numbness in all his fingers.

With Warren hospitalized, he has canceled Vision Night, which was scheduled for Thursday. Congregants expected to hear their pastor share what's on his heart about where the Lord is leading their church.

"I'm disappointed by this delay since I am super excited about what I have to share at Vision Night. But I learned a long time ago to always go with the flow and trust God when plans get messed up. His timing is always best," he said in the email.

US gives Uganda faith based organization over 17b to fight HIV/Aids


Pretending to care when the truth is that they do not really care: 11,604 Ugandan patients living with HIV/AIDS stranded as USAID funded project ends

US gives Uganda 27b to fight HIV/Aids
Publish Date: Sep 27, 2012
By John Odyek

Three Ugandan organisations fighting HIV/Aids have received a total of US$10.75m (sh27b) from US President Barack Obama.  

The five-year grants were awarded under the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The recepients are local faith-based organizations providing comprehensive HIV/AIDS support, treatment, and prevention services.

They include: e Uganda Episcopal Conference-Uganda Catholic Medical Bureau received US$ 5.4m (sh13.6b) to provide comprehensive, quality HIV prevention, care, and treatment services that promote and safeguard the health of communities through faith-based health care service providers in 12 sites located in 11 districts in the central, northern, and western regions of Uganda.

 Uganda Protestant Medical Bureau gets U$ 2.45 m (sh6.2b) to provide high-quality services to people living with and affected by HIV in six health facilities in the districts of Amolatar, Bushenyi, Sheema, Kabarole, Kampala, and Jinja.

They will provide Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission services, safe male circumcision, voluntary counseling and testing, adult treatment, pediatric treatment, services targeting orphans and vulnerable children, TB/HIV treatment, laboratory strengthening, and provision of ARV drugs.

And, the Children's AIDS Fund Uganda receives US$ 2.9 m (sh7.3b) to provide comprehensive services beyond basic HIV care and treatment, including patient support groups, dental care, assistance with school fees, discordant couple support groups, income-generating activities, and client-led community outreach activities.

These will be offered in four clinics the Family Hope Center (Kampala), Family Hope Center (Jinja), Kabwohe Clinical Research Centre (Mitooma District), and Bushenyi Medical Centre (Bushenyi District).  

Since PEPFAR was established in 2004, the USA has focused on supporting the Government of Uganda in its efforts to scale-up HIV prevention, care, treatment, and support services through direct financial support and technical assistance to both governmental and non-governmental implementing partners working at the national, district, and community levels.

The majority of CDC-Uganda's implementing partners are local organizations that directly provide services to the Ugandan people.

Wednesday 26 September 2012

Conformed to the Image of the Devil : Devil looking Hotel shooting suspect admits to crime spree

27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. (Genesis 1:27)


And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.(Genesis 6:5-6)

First Read:



 Hotel shooting suspect admits to crime spree

Man charged with attempted murder in two-hour standoff with police at hotel.

The man accused of shooting a police officer Thursday at a hotel near Merrill Field later admitted to stealing cars and burglarizing homes to feed a heroin addiction, charges say.

It was those Hillside break-ins police were investigating when Jason W. Barnum opened fire from a bathroom at the Merrill Field Inn, police say. His weapon: A handgun stolen in the recent burglaries and vehicle thefts, according the charges. One officer was lightly injured in the gunfire and is expected to return to work Tuesday. 

Two officers shot back, striking Barnum in the right arm, said Lt. Anthony Henry.

Described by police as a "serial burglar," Barnum spent most of the past decade in prison on burglary and forgery convictions. The 37-year-old is now charged with attempted murder in the two-hour standoff that emptied the hotel, froze traffic on Fifth Avenue and drew nearly every on-duty police officer in the city.

Investigators arrested two others who were in the hotel room with Barnum -- Stephanie Callis and Sam Williams Jr. -- on warrants. District Court Judge Alex Swiderski set Barnum's bail for the more serious charge at $500,000 at the Anchorage jail Friday afternoon.

Standing at the court lectern, Barnum shifted his weight from one foot to the other, glancing occasionally -- the white of one eye black with tattoo ink -- at reporters and bail bondsmen sitting in the gallery.

More charges may follow. Police say they're still piecing together what happened at the hotel and investigating Barnum's role in the string of Anchorage break-ins. Unlike many burglars, police believe Barnum wasn't waiting for people to leave their homes. He was sneaking in while the owners were still inside, Henry said.

Investigating the Hillside burglaries and reports of someone rifling through vehicles, police received a report of an abandoned Toyota pickup in a parking lot near Merrill Field Inn.

Surveillance footage obtained from the hotel showed a man hauling a tote from the stolen truck into room 209. The man later threw the tote in a trash bin, the charges say.

Three police officers went to the room to investigate. What happened next is confusing, the charges say. Three people were inside, and all three knew police were at the door. Barnum hid in the bathroom with Callis, prosecutors say.

The third person, Williams, told police that Callis was sick. The woman began making "retching sounds" from behind the closed door.

Barnum later told police he urged Callis to fake being sick in hopes of discouraging police from coming in the bathroom.

Suspicious that Callis was hiding something or someone, police demanded she come out anyway. Williams was already in handcuffs when the door opened.

As Callis walked out, Barnum opened fire, the charges say.

The police officers may not have known Barnum was there until the gunfire began. He never said why he started shooting, Henry said.

Two officers were in the hotel room at the time, Henry said. Another officer and a police supervisor waited just outside the door.

A bullet grazed the back of one of the officers, police say.

"It kind of unzipped him, and the doctors stitched him up," said Police Chief Mark Mew.

The wounded officer has not been publicly identified. He was treated and released from a local hospital and plans to return to work next week, Mew said.

The injured officer and another officer shot back, striking Barnum. "I believe it fractured his upper arm," Henry said.

Callis and Williams were taken into police custody while Barnum remained in the room until shortly after 1 p.m., when he surrendered, slumped and bleeding.

Inside the hotel room police found a backpack containing jewelry, jewelry boxes, mementos and other items.

Since 2001, Barnum has spent roughly 8 1/2 years in prison. He was most recently released Dec. 30, 2011, after serving more than a year on a parole violation, according to the Department of Corrections. His distinctive tattoos once aided police investigators when a bank teller took note of the markings on his head and neck as Barnum tried to cash a stolen check.

Among Barnum's convictions, according to court records:
• 1993 -- first-degree burglary
• 1994 -- burglary, larceny
• 1999 -- resisting arrest, drunken driving
• 2000 -- Second degree forgery, second-degree theft.
• 2004 -- first-degree burglary, fourth-degree assault and resisting arrest

In 2000, Barnum cashed two checks stolen from an Anchorage home for $890, the charges say. He was connected to another burglary that year when guns, jewelry, checks and other items were stolen from two other homes, court records show. 

In one 2004 case, Barnum was spotted walking out from behind a garage wearing a white hard hat. When the homeowner confronted him, Barnum mumbled that he was looking for a light pole, according to a police complaint. The homeowner went inside to find his house ransacked.

A series of burglaries Wednesday night and Thursday morning led police to Barnum's hotel, but he may be connected to other break-ins that investigators don't know about, Henry said. The thefts have been reported in the upper Hillside and Rabbit Creek area, he said, with about seven known burglaries so far.

"When people do burglaries, they generally do businesses at night because no one is there. They generally do residences during the day because no one's there," Henry said. "When you go into people's homes at night, that's very risky behavior."

Police said they don't know where Barnum had been living since leaving prison. He and his companions had rented the hotel room for at least one night and reserved it for one more when they were discovered by police.

Where was the devil she worships when the pics were take!!!Maama Fiina’s husband sues Red Pepper over nude photos

Maama Fiina in a Pipe Smoking Devils Invocation ritual


Uganda’s Satanic priestess Maama Fiina allegedly in hiding after her nude pictures leak to the press

Maama Fiina’s husband sues Red Pepper over nude photos

Wednesday, 26 September 2012 00:29

Written by Siraje Lubwama

Hajji Ismail Ssekidde, the husband to renowned herbalist, Sylvia Namutebi aka Maama Fiina, has dragged Red Pepper and its Luganda sister publication Kamunye to court, accusing them of constantly publishing his wife’s nude pictures.

Through his lawyer, Isaac Kimaze Ssemakadde of Web Advocates & Solicitors, Ssekidde filed the case in High Court yesterday, alleging among other things that the respondents’ arbitrary act of giving unsought publicity in the tabloid newspapers and online publications of the sexuality of his wife infringed his human rights and freedoms protected by laws of Uganda.

Ssemakadde told us last evening that his client yesterday secured a temporary injunction banning the two tabloids from further publishing the nude photographs of his wife and related defamatory stories until the main suit is heard and disposed of.

“The applicant seeks a declaration that the information, photographs and other materials for the respondents’ publications complained of in this application were gathered and disseminated without following proper journalistic ethics and standards and in contravention of the Press and Journalists Act, Cap. 105,” the plaint reads in part.

In an affidavit accompanying the application, Ssekidde describes himself as a businessman in Ndeeba as well as husband of Namutebi with whom he is blessed with ten children – six of whom are minors.

Ssekidde, who wants Shs 20bn compensation among other things, alleges that his family was at the beginning of July 2012 troubled by “rogue journalists” who threatened to publish the photograph of his wife in the nude. He alleges they acted on their threats on September 13, 2012.

“The photographs and articles in question concern my wife in uncovered and relaxed position in what clearly is a private setting – a bed room – where  peeping Toms, snoops and voyeurs should not be… the photographs were  published to harass and embarrass my wife and destabilize our marriage,” Ssekidde states.

He says the photographs and articles in question are highly unpleasant not only to the couple but also their children, family, friends and relatives. Ssekidde says he is aware that his wife is not ashamed or embarrassed by her sexuality, but it is private and that publication of the said photos has suddenly killed the peace and harmony that they have tirelessly built over the years.

“The applicant shall also prove that the respondents threaten and intend to continue publishing the photographs and articles complained of in the forthcoming issues of their tabloid newspapers unless they are restricted from doing so by this honourable court,” the plaint adds.

Besides compensation, Ssekidde also wants the tabloids to not only disclose their source of the photographs but also destroy them all.

“The Applicant also seeks an order directing the Media Council and the Broadcasting Council to take swift and severe disciplinary action against the aforesaid persons,” the plaint goes on.

Red Pepper Banned from Publishing Mama Fiina’s Nude Pictures


Posted by Sandra Birungi on September 26, 2012        

Red Pepper and sister paper, Kamunye have been banned from publishing any more nude pictures of Maama Fiina by court.

The court reached the decision after Hajji Ismail Ssekidde, the husband to Sylvia Namutebi aka Maama Fiina dragged Red Pepper and Kamunye accusing them of constantly publishing his wife’s nude pictures.

Hajj Ssekidde through his lawyer, Isaac Kimaze Ssemakadde of Web Advocates & Solicitors filed the case in High Court yesterday. Ssemakadde said these publications infringed his human rights and freedoms protected by laws of Uganda.

A temporary injunction was secured banning the two tabloids from further publications. “The applicant seeks a declaration that the information, photographs and other materials for the respondents’ publications complained of in this application were gathered and disseminated without following proper journalistic ethics and standards and in contravention of the Press and Journalists Act, Cap. 105,” the plaint reads in part.

Ssekidde and Maama Fiina have ten children, six of whom are minors. He wants shs 20bn compensation. “The photographs and articles in question concern my wife in uncovered and relaxed position in what clearly is a private setting – a bed room – where  peeping Toms, snoops and voyeurs should not be… the photographs were  published to harass and embarrass my wife and destabilize our marriage,” Ssekidde states.

He says the photographs and articles are unpleasant not only to the couple but also their children, family, friends and relatives. “The applicant shall also prove that the respondents threaten and intend to continue publishing the photographs and articles complained of in the forthcoming issues of their tabloid newspapers unless they are restricted from doing so by this honourable court,” the plaint adds.

Besides compensation, Ssekidde also wants the tabloids to not only disclose their source of the photographs but also destroy them all.

“The Applicant also seeks an order directing the Media Council and the Broadcasting Council to take swift and severe disciplinary action against the aforesaid persons,” the plaint goes on.





Tuesday 25 September 2012

Man in control or God in control? Gender Selection Has Become A Multimillion-Dollar Industry

Man in control or God in control? Gender Selection Has Become A Multimillion-Dollar Industry  

Written for Slate by Jasmeet Sidhu
Megan Simpson always expected that she would be a mother to a daughter.

She had grown up in a family of four sisters. She liked sewing, baking, and doing hair and makeup. She hoped one day to share these interests with a little girl whom she could dress in pink.

Simpson, a labor and delivery nurse at a hospital north of Toronto, was surprised when her first child, born in 2002, was a boy. That’s okay, she thought. The next one will be a girl.

Except it wasn’t. Two years later, she gave birth to another boy.

Desperate for a baby girl, Simpson and her husband drove four hours to a fertility clinic in Michigan. Gender selection is illegal in Canada, which is why the couple turned to the United States. They paid $800 for a procedure that sorts sperm based on the assumption that sperm carrying a Y chromosome swim faster in a protein solution than sperm with an X chromosome do.

Simpson was inseminated with the slower sperm that same day. Fifteen weeks later, she asked a colleague at the hospital to sneak in an after-hours ultrasound. The results felt like a brick landing on her stomach: another boy.

“I lay in bed and cried for weeks,” said Simpson, now 36, whose name has been changed to protect her privacy. She took a job in the operating room so she would no longer have to work with women who were giving birth to girls.

Simpson and her husband talked about getting an abortion, but she decided to continue with the pregnancy. In the meantime, she looked for a way to absolutely guarantee that her next child would be the daughter she had always dreamed about. She discovered an online community of women just like her, confiding deep-seated feelings of depression over giving birth to boys. The Web forums mentioned a technique offered in the United States that would guarantee her next baby would be a girl. It would cost tens of thousands of dollars, money Simpson and her husband did not have. Simpson waited until her third son was born. Then she began to make some phone calls.

The conventional wisdom has always been this: Given a choice, couples would prefer sons. That has certainly been the case in places like China and India, where couples have used pregnancy screening to abort female fetuses. But in the United States, a different kind of sex selection is taking place: Mothers like Simpson are using expensive reproductive procedures so they can select girls.

Just over a decade ago, some doctors saw the potential profits that could be made from women like Simpson — an untapped market of young, fertile mothers. These doctors trolled online forums, offering counseling and services. They coined the phrase “family balancing” to make sex selection more palatable. They marketed their clinics by giving away free promotional DVDs and setting up slick websites.

These fertility doctors have turned a procedure originally designed to prevent genetic diseases into a luxury purchase akin to plastic surgery. Gender selection now rakes in revenues of at least $100 million every year. The average cost of a gender selection procedure at high-profile clinics is about $18,000, and an estimated 4,000 to 6,000 procedures are performed every year. Fertility doctors foresee an explosion in sex-selection procedures on the horizon, as couples become accustomed to the idea that they can pay to beget children of the gender they prefer.

Inside a fourth-floor office suite off a palm-tree-lined street in Encino, Calif., in an embryology lab, two men wearing maroon scrubs peer into high-tech microscopes. The men are fertilizing human eggs with sperm samples collected earlier that day. After fertilization and three days of incubation, an embryologist uses a laser to cut a hole through an embryo’s protective membrane and then picks out one of the eight cells. Fluorescent dyes allow the embryologist to see the chromosomes and determine whether the embryo is carrying the larger XX pair of chromosomes or the tinier XY. The remaining seven cells will go on to develop normally if the embryo is chosen and implanted in a client’s uterus.

The lab is part of the Fertility Institutes, a clinic set up by Jeffrey Steinberg, one of the most prominent gender selection doctors in the United States. In his spacious, oak-paneled office down the hall, Steinberg is surrounded by photos of his own naturally conceived children. His clinic is the world leader for this gender selection technique, known as preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD). “We’re by far number one. Number two is not even a close second,” he said.

The United States is one of the few countries in the world that still legally allows PGD for prenatal sex selection. The procedure was designed in the early 1990s to screen embryos for chromosome-linked diseases. It is illegal for use for nonmedical reasons in Canada, the U.K., and Australia.

Steinberg’s gender-selection patients are typically around 30 years old, educated, married, middle to upper class. They also typically have a couple of children already, unlike the women in his waiting room undergoing in vitro fertilization and hoping to conceive any child at all.

Statistics on gender selection are sparse. A 2006 survey by Johns Hopkins University found that 42 percent of fertility clinics offered PGD for gender selection. But that was half a decade ago, before many clinics undertook aggressive online marketing campaigns to drive the demand.

Gender selection is the primary business at Steinberg’s Fertility Institutes, with nurses casually asking couples in the waiting room whether they, too, are interested in selecting the gender of their baby. Business quadrupled when Steinberg started advertising PGD for gender selection.

Steinberg said he never intended to make gender selection his niche. But then the ethics committee of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, a nonprofit organization that attempts to set standards in the industry, came out against prenatal sex selection for nonmedical reasons in 1994. The group said the practice would promote gender discrimination and was an inappropriate use of medical resources. That made Steinberg angry.

“I took it on as a challenge,” he said. “The fact that they didn’t like it, and the fact that I saw nothing wrong with it, made me more aggressive.”

He advertised in Indian-American and Chinese-American newspapers. Local groups accused him of stoking cultural biases for boys in those communities, and his ads were pulled by the publishers.

In 2009, Steinberg came under a worldwide media firestorm when he announced on his website that couples could also choose their baby’s eye and hair color, in addition to gender. He revoked the offer after receiving a letter from the Vatican. Steinberg seems to enjoy the attention, whether good or bad. After all, the publicity only helps bring in more patients to his clinics.

Many women who undergo PGD for gender selection discovered the procedure in online forums. Reading the posts on these forums is like entering another world. Users adorn their avatars with pink and princess imagery. They talk about their desperation to have daughters. They share notes on the process of going through PGD, recounting in detail their own experiences: blood-test results, drug effects, in vitro cycles.

Daniel Potter, the medical director of the Huntington Reproductive Center, has written more than 1,000 posts for and answered forum members’ questions about the procedure and its costs. He arranged in-person and phone consultations with forum members, including Megan Simpson. In 2011, he even started a personal website where he calls himself the “gender selection expert.”

From posting on message boards to using Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube, fertility doctors have appropriated 21st-century marketing methods to bring a 21st -century technology to the masses. Competition is stiff for search-friendly domain names for clinic websites and sponsored Google search ads. For example, there’s, not to be confused with There’s also and, all websites maintained by fertility clinics promoting PGD. These sites are filled with glossy stock photos of happy families, polished YouTube videos of doctors making their pitch, and patient testimonials in numerous languages.

In May 2008, Simpson and her husband traveled to California to undergo PGD at the Laguna Hills branch of the Huntington Reproductive Center. There, she met up with some of the women she had made friends with online. “We went shopping and picked out girly clothes and dreamed of the day we could have a baby to wear them,” Simpson recalled.

Three days after arriving in California, Simpson underwent egg retrieval surgery. Eighteen eggs were retrieved; of these, 11 were mature and were fertilized.

Her husband left after the surgery to return home and take care of their three boys. After resting for five days, Simpson returned to the clinic for her embryo transfer.

She was met with devastating news: all of her embryos were found to be chromosomally abnormal. None were useable.
“I cried. And cried some more,” recalled Simpson. “All that money, the drugs, the travel, time off work. The money.”

Despite the financial and emotional setbacks, she wanted to try PGD again, soon. Three months later, she was back in Laguna Hills. She had taken out $15,000 on a line of credit to pay for the second attempt.

She went through the whole process again. This time, the embryos were good to go. An ultrasound was used to guide a catheter containing the embryos into her uterus. Six days later, Simpson took a pregnancy test. It was positive.

When she was 15 weeks pregnant, she asked a friend at work to once again sneak her into an after-hours ultrasound. Simpson was anxious, haunted by the memory of her last ultrasound.

But this time, it was different. She was pregnant with a girl.

After nearly four years and $40,000, Simpson’s dreams of being a “girl-mommy” were finally going to come true.

Simpson gave birth to her daughter during a home delivery in her bathtub in 2009. “The moment she was born, I asked if it was still a girl,” she recalled.
Simpson had to work six days a week right up until the delivery and months afterward to repay the loan she took.

“My husband and I stared at our daughter for that first year. She was worth every cent. Better than a new car, or a kitchen reno.”

Much of the evidence that Americans preferentially choose girls is anecdotal, as no larger body tracks gender selection procedures. But data from Google show that “how to have a girl” is searched three times as often in the United States as “how to have a boy.” Many fertility doctors say that girls are the goal for 80 percent of gender selection patients. A study published in 2009 by the online journal Reproductive Biomedicine Online found Caucasian-Americans preferentially select females through PGD 70 percent of the time. Those of Indian or Chinese descent largely chose boys.

So where does this preference come from? And with the sex-selection rhetoric in the United States centered around “family balancing,” a feel-good term that implies couples are rationally planning their families, is it still sexist to choose for girls?

For Jennifer Merrill Thompson, the reasons were simple. “I’m not into sports. I’m not into violent games. I’m not into a lot of things boys represent and boys do,” she said. Thompson is the author of Chasing the Gender Dream, a self-published book that documents her use of gender-selection technology to conceive her daughter.

Interviews with several women from the forums at and yielded the same stories: a yearning for female bonding. Relationships with their own mothers that defined what kind of mother they wanted to be to a daughter. A desire to engage in stereotypical female activities that they thought would be impossible with a baby boy.

The American Society for Reproductive Medicine says it’s concerned that gender selection is leading otherwise healthy women to undergo unnecessary medical procedures, and that fertility doctors might turn their attention away from treating infertility to pursue a more lucrative specialty. And the group points out the possible psychological harm to children born through gender selection. They fear these children would be pressured to live up to the stereotypes of the gender that was picked out and paid for by their parents.

“It’s high-tech eugenics,” said Marcy Darnovsky, director of the Center for Genetics and Society, a Berkeley, Calif. nonprofit focused on reproductive technologies. “If you’re going through the trouble and expense to select a child of a certain sex, you’re encouraging gender stereotypes that are damaging to women and girls. …What if you get a girl who wants to play basketball? You can’t send her back.”

Despite the objections from some medical ethicists, it seems that gender selection, like many aspects of fertility medicine, will remain legal and unregulated in the United States.


Preparing teens for sexual immorality without limits: Teen Birth Control: Doctors Urge IUDs and Implants for Girls

Teen Birth Control: Doctors Urge IUDs and Implants for Girls

By Associated Press |

Teenage girls may prefer the pill, the patch or even wishful thinking, but their doctors should be recommending IUDs or hormonal implants — long-lasting and more effective birth control that you don’t have to remember to use every time, the nation’s leading gynecologists group said Thursday.

The IUD and implants are safe and nearly 100 percent effective at preventing pregnancy, and should be “first-line recommendations,” the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists said in updating its guidance for teens.

Both types of contraception are more invasive than the pill, requiring a doctor to put them in place. That, and cost, are probably why the pill is still the most popular form of contraception in the U.S.

But birth control pills often must be taken at the very same time every day to be most potent. And forgetting to take even one can lead to pregnancy, which is why the pill is sometimes only 91 percent effective.

An IUD, or intrauterine device, is a small, T-shaped piece of plastic inserted in the uterus that can prevent pregnancy for up to 10 years. An implant is a matchstick-size plastic rod that releases hormones. It is placed under the skin of the upper arm and usually lasts three years.

The new guidelines don’t tell teens not to use other methods, but “if your goal is to prevent a pregnancy, then using an implant or an IUD would be the best way to do this,” said Dr. Tina Raine-Bennett, head of the committee that wrote the recommendations.
The organization’s previous guidelines, issued in 2007, also encouraged the use of IUDs and implants among teenagers. The new guidelines go further in saying physicians should discuss the two types of birth control with sexually active teens at every doctor visit.

The gynecologists group said condoms should still be used at all times because no other birth control method protects against AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases.

While it may sound surprising that such invasive contraceptives are being endorsed for teenagers, 43 percent of girls ages 15 to 19 have had sex, a government survey found. Most are using some kind of effective birth control, but only about 5 percent use the long-lasting devices, the gynecologists group said.

In 21 states, all teenagers can get contraceptives without parental permission, according to the Guttmacher Institute, which tracks laws affecting women’s health. A few other states allow it under certain circumstances.

The IUD and implant cost hundreds of dollars. The new health reform law requires health insurance plans to cover birth control without co-payments. Also, some publicly funded health clinics offer birth control free or at a reduced cost.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has been more cautious and has not endorsed specific methods of birth control, but is updating its guidance. Some pediatricians have been reluctant to recommend IUDs for teens, partly because of concerns over infection risks; an older model was blamed for infertility.

Dr. Paula Braverman, a University of Cincinnati physician involved in updating the academy’s position, said the gynecologists’ advice does a good job of clarifying misconceptions about IUDs and implants.

An IUD called the Dalkon Shield that was sold in the 1970s was linked to dangerous and sometimes deadly infections. Newer IUDs have been found to be safe, and the gynecologists group said the risk of pelvic infections increases only slightly during the first three weeks after insertion.

The hormonal implant has been updated, too. The newest kind uses just one thin rod; an older type no longer sold in the U.S. used six rods that sometimes didn’t stay in place. IUDs and implants can be removed at any time with no lasting effect on fertility, the gynecologists group said.

“The ones on the market today are extremely safe,” said Dr. Mary Fournier, an adolescent-medicine specialist at Chicago’s Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital, who praised the new recommendations. “That is what everybody should be telling their patients.”

She said she already recommends IUDs for her patients and is being trained in how to insert birth control implants.

Raine-Bennett, research director for women’s health at Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, Calif., said she gets mixed reactions from her patients about both methods.

“Some of them say, ‘Great! Something that I don’t have to think about.’ Others are, like, ‘Hmmm, something in my body?’ It really varies,” she said.

Doctors need to be sensitive to that and provide detailed information to dispel any myths and allow teens to make informed decisions, Raine-Bennett said.

America for Jesus 2012: A National Solemn Assembly for Which Jesus?

America for Jesus 2012: A National Solemn Assembly for Which Jesus?  


Diane Conklin
Christian Research Service
September 22, 2012

One Nation Under God, Inc. (ONUG) is an organization founded by the late Apostle and Bishop John Gimenez of Rock Church International.  He received a prophetic word and consequently believed he had a God-given mandate to turn America back to God in prayer.  Since 1980, ONUG has sponsored several “solemn assemblies”:

  • 1980 – Washington for Jesus 80 on the National Mall in D.C. – This solemn assembly was focused on God healing the land
  • 1981 -1982 - America For Jesus – These were citywide rallies held from California to the Florida that were solemn assemblies for regions to pray for the nation
  • 1988 – Washington for Jesus 88 on the National Mall in D.C. – This prayer gathering was a time of repentance for a failing church
  • 1996 – Washington For Jesus 96 on the Capitol Steps of the Mall in D.C. – This assembly focused on bringing down strongholds & activating a new generation
  • 2004 – America For Jesus 2004 on the National Mall in Washington D.C. – This rally was originally a prayer event for Latinos in the church of America but eventually was opened up for everyone to attend to pray for the nation
  • 2007 – The Assembly 2007 in Virginia Beach Virginia on the Oceanfront – This rally was organized to rededicate America back to God through the planting of the cross to renew the 400 year old covenant of Chaplain Robert Hunt and the Jamestown colonists

The latest solemn assembly, America for Jesus 2012 (AFJ), has the current bishop of Rock Church at its helm, Anne Gimenez, wife of the late bishop, who states:

I never dreamed God would speak to me to call a national solemn assembly for 2012.  But God confirmed the word again and again; however, this call is different. We are naming it America for Jesus and we are gathering for prayer in Philadelphia, the birthplace of our nation- where all of our foundational documents were ratified—the Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation and the U.S. Constitution.


The AFJ2012 website references the “state of emergency” in our nation as part of its Mission objective:

America is in a state of emergency evidenced by the symptoms of widespread moral depravity and economic meltdown. Education, government, and man’s wisdom cannot solve this problem. There is only one remedy that truly can “heal the Land”-

2 Chronicles 7:14  If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. God required four things of His people before he would hear them. 1) humility 2) prayer 3) seek the Lord & 4) repentance.


When I consider this brief overview of all the solemn assemblies sponsored by ONUG, how is it that America continues down its path of “widespread moral depravity and economic meltdown?”  With the admonition to pray at each assembly over the decades, such as with AFJ2012: “Pray with a massive army of intercessors to beseech heaven for the greatest awakening that our nation has ever seen” (, why is America still plummeting?

Could it be that the sovereign God of the Bible is not a New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) dominionist?  Could it be that God will not honor professing Christians that dishonor Him by relying on subjective words, feelings, impressions, and prophetic impartations over and above, or even alongside, His eternal Written Word?  Could it be that unbiblical, hyper-Charismatic tenets and practices are wicked ways that God will forgive once repented of?  Do those steeped in their folly seek the Lord, Who is Holy forever, not knowing they are “wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked” (Rev 3:17)?

The AFJ Prayer Encounter Week #13, Sept 17-Sept 23, 2012, has as its Theme: Restoring Healing in Our Land, with a Prayer Focus: “Pray for the Third Great Awakening to heal the heart and soul of America, and bring an abundant harvest of souls” (  Cindy Jacobs, keynote speaker along with Bill Johnson at the AFJ2012 AwakeNow Conference (which includes worship, healing, and prophetic activation), references this Third Great Awakening:

We believe that the outpouring of the Holy Spirit that came on November 11, 2009, in Kansas City signaled the beginning of a Third Great Awakening that we prophesied would come to America and the world. November 11th was the day the Pilgrims made covenant with God in Plymouth, Massachusetts. Many intercessors across the nation are crying out to God for the nation to once again become “a city set on a hill.” If we continue to pray and call out to God, the nation will shift.

She also states the following about “differing variables that can affect the timing and/or coming to pass of these words”:

“All prophecy not contained in Scripture is conditional.”


Could this Third Great Awakening ”prophecy” be conditioned upon the unconditional, scriptural prophecy that says, “Let no one in any way deceive you, for it [the Day of the Lord] will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed…that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders?” (2 Thess 2:3,9; emphasis in the original).  Whatever the Third Great Awakening is purported to be or even ends up being (false revival/harvest/signs and wonders), it ultimately doesn’t stand a chance against what Scripture reveals about God’s non-negotiable plans to reveal His glory and sovereignty in the affairs of man.  Can those in the NAR/Dominionism group humble themselves enough to accept this and repent?  Only God knows if it is too late for them or America.

Finally, our country needs prayer that is consistent with the apostolic teachings as preserved in the Scriptures; not from the NAR’s man-centered prophetic, political, and social agenda.

For a list of featured AFJ2012 participants and sponsors, also see

Christian Research Service carries a variety of articles and information on the New Apostolic Reformation. Visit our website at

Monday 24 September 2012

When utterances of African leaders make God laugh: “Am now 68 years and one of the things I don’t have a budget for is sickness’’. He explained that he no longer shook hands as a precaution against the deadly Ebola virus. Museveni

Museveni explains why he stopped shaking hands

Publish Date: Sep 24, 2012

By Vision Reporter

President Yoweri Museveni has called on Ugandans to be more careful with their health saying most of the diseases in Uganda are preventable and can be managed if people were more sensitized.

“Am now 68 years and one of the things I don’t have a budget for is sickness. This is because am a very determined person and I don’t want a situation where I can’t do anything because am sick,” he said.

The President said unlike flue which is airborne, AIDS is a sickness people hunt for and spread to others.

“AIDS you already know where it is and alcohol. You wonder why people should drink until their cheeks are swollen. If I was drinking alcohol, I would not serve you for all this time. You may wonder why I don’t shake hands but wave,” Museveni said.

He explained that he no longer shook hands as a precaution against the deadly Ebola virus. The recent Ebola outbreak in Kibaale district in Western Uganda killed nineteen.

“When it appeared, I made broadcasts because I take sickness very seriously and told people to stop shaking hands. With Ebola you just shake hands and you get it. Fortunately this was managed and it stopped spreading, many people would have died. The last patient was discharged two weeks ago and the health workers are under quarantine until they are cleared. WHO sets these regulations to manage the disease. The Ministry of Health will announce the end of Ebola on October 4. I want people to learn the same. It is not bad manners if I wave,” he said.

The President warned people living in disaster prone areas near Mount Elgon, saying they risked disasters such as landslides and floods.

“This mountain is a gift from God. If we play around with it, it will turn against us. Some of the cheap politicking by some leaders who tell people to go and get malewa (bamboo) because they have always done so is wrong. When people die those who misled them go into hiding. Let us stop these games. This is very serious. These mountains are very dangerous. They are a great gift to us, to Uganda and to Africa but can be dangerous,” he said.

Museveni said while people need to use part of the mountain for agriculture they must know where to stop and if they don’t God will stop them.

“It is like when you are shaving hair, you don’t feel pain but when you cut deep into the skin you must stop. The wells and springs which come from the mountains are like your veins. The Bagisu circumcise but they know where to stop, they can’t cut off everything, people will die,” he said.

The President who was the chief guest at the groundbreaking ceremony and fundraising for Bulambuli district Headquarters administration offices, later launched the environmental restoration drive in Bulambuli  and cautioned leaders against poor planning saying they can’t do everything at a go.

The district received the mandatory sh100m from government for the district headquarters. The district also wants government to tarmac various roads in the region, provide electricity and build industries.

“The economy of Uganda had collapsed by 1986 and tax collection was very low. Now the economy has been revived and we are collecting more taxes. We started programmes like the UPE and USE which takes a lot of money – about one trillion. We will do infrastructure selectively.  If we say that we do all at once, it’s not possible, that is bad planning. Why don’t you start with something small and work on the headquarters later,” he said.

Museveni said with electricity now in Moroto, government is working on establishing a cement factory at Katikere in Moroto district where there is more limestone than in Tororo and Hima next year and are also planning for a tomato factory in Bulambuli.

He said in November, there will be a budget retreat for NRM Members of parliament so that principles of budgeting are clear to everybody to know why they budget for some things and not others.

This will later be followed by another retreat for District chairpersons and CAOs. He was happy to note that coffee seedlings have been planted widely in the region saying this is the real solution to household incomes. He urged leaders to sensitive the people about household incomes saying even without tarmac, families can still engage in income generating activities.

We will not cut Defence budget, says Museveni

By Emmanuel Gyezaho

Posted  Tuesday, September 25  2012 at  01:00
In Summary
President Museveni yesterday said the government will not slash the Defence ministry budget in the wake of an impasse over additional funding for the health sector. MPs have vowed to block the budget unless additional funding for the health sector is found.

President Museveni yesterday said the government will not slash the Defence ministry budget in the wake of an impasse over additional funding for the health sector.

“Nobody can cut… we cannot agree to the cutting of defence. I cannot agree because Defence is underfunded already,” the president said.

The President suggested they were “many other things” that the government is yet to accomplish in its building of the defence sector.

He added that the government would find a way of meeting the financial demands of the health sector.

For close to three weeks now, the Executive has been locked in a budget disagreement with Parliament over a proposal, by the MPs, to re-allocate money from various ministries, including Defence, to save Shs39.2 billion for the recruitment and welfare of health workers.

The MPs argue that the health sector is in dire need of more funding but government says it can only work on a stop-gap measure - to employ 1,000 midwives - as the sector waits for next financial year.

At the media briefing at his country home in Rwakitura, the President also said while Uganda has not signed any new contracts to acquire additional fighter jets, this does not rule out a future acquisition.

“We have not signed any contracts for new jets but if we get new funds in the future, we will continue building our airforce,” he said. “This, however, doesn’t rule out in the future that we may be buying new jets. Building our army is a continuous process.”

Mr Museveni also said that the government will replace the three Mi-24 attack helicopters which crashed on Mt Kenya on August 12. He said money for use in replacing the aircraft has been saved through “some economies”. The President had earlier denied reports that he has hand-picked a Chinese firm as contractor for the Karuma hydro power project.

Museveni calls ministers over budget deadlock

By Yasiin Mugerwa 

Posted  Sunday, September 23  2012 at  01:00

In Summary
Unrest. The president reportedly stormed out of an NRM caucus meeting last week after a section of the meeting heckled him when he said he could not sacrifice the defence budget for anything. Lawmakers want the health sector budget allocation increased.
A deepening budget crisis in Parliament inflamed by a health sector in “shambles”, has forced President Museveni to summon a crisis Cabinet meeting tomorrow to discuss a give-and-take deal that would ease the passing of this year’s budget.

Sources told Sunday Monitor that the discussion in Cabinet will focus on the government option of discussing the politics involved and the implications of rising this year’s Shs11.4 trillion budget by Shs39.2 billion for health sector.

Junior Finance Minister Fred Omach is expected to argue in Cabinet that any attempts to bow to pressure in Parliament would “disorganise” the budget priorities and that this would require the ministry to align the budget afresh, hence delaying its execution.

The Budget Committee of Parliament has since recommended that wasteful areas in some votes be cut by 30 per cent to raise the Shs39.2b needed to motivate and recruit more health workers in the country.

This proposal was rejected by the President after Parliament recommended that defence budget be cut by Shs15 billion. The President on Monday reportedly stormed out of the NRM caucus meeting at State House after he was heckled by defiant NRM members. Trouble started after the President said he couldn’t “sacrifice the defence budget for anything”.

The President has proposed that the budget be approved and the government brings a supplementary request at a later date to address the challenges in the health sector. The president also said government would recruit 1,000 midwives this year and that the health sector will be prioritised next financial year.

“If they don’t listen to us, we are going to pass the budget as recommended by the Budget Committee, but not as Executive wants it,” Wilfred Niwagaba (NRM, Ndorwa East) said, adding: “For us to delay the process, we are only helping the government to see sense in helping the people who are dying in hospitals without doctors and drugs.”

Sunday Monitor understands that there will be an NRM caucus tomorrow to discuss the Cabinet position on the standoff holding the approval of this year’s budget.

The NRM Caucus on Thursday had tasked Ministry of Finance to work with Ministry of Health with a view of finding the required funds through re-allocations within the budget or a supplementary.

On Wednesday President Museveni summoned Speaker Rebecca Kadaga to State House where the President reportedly demanded to know why Parliament was holding the passing of the budget. But Ms Kadaga explained that she had asked the budget committee to harmonise the budget figures with the Executive after members vetoed a budget without the money for health sector.

The budget deadlock has increased the pressure on government to fix a “dilapidated” healthcare system and wobbled the centre of power in a rising political contest that has unsettled the relationship between Legislature and Executive.
The government failure to provide Shs260b to health sector has infuriated lawmakers who are now accusing the government of being “insensitive” to health of Ugandans. The government has blocked the proposed Budget Committee recommendations to cut Shs39.2b from wasteful expenditures.

Asked what will happen in the event that the government refuses to adjust the Shs11.4 trillion budget to take care of health sector, the former Shadow Finance Minister, Mr Oduman Okello, said the government would operate without a budget.
“The budget will not be passed and the service delivery will definitely be curtailed, but who is to blame?”
Nicholas Opio, an independent legal analyst, said the power of Parliament is admittedly limited to approval.
It is useful to distinguish between approval and allocation. The duty of allocation is the preserve of the Executive but the allocation is subject to the approval of Parliament.
In arriving at approvals, Article 155 (4) requires that an appropriate committee of the house provides recommendations to parliament - the recommendation then provides a basis for approval or non-approval of the budget by the house.

Russia says Uganda to buy six more jets


Posted  Sunday, September 23  2012 at  01:00

In Summary
Secret deal? Supplier makes details of the deal public although army denies existence of such a project.
Uganda has started negotiations with Russian state arms export company over a possibility of purchasing six more fighter jets, nine months after sealing similar transaction with the same arms company, a Russian international state news agency, Rianovosti, claims.

However the army spokesperson, Felix Kulayigye said yesterday that he is not aware of the developments save for the rumours being peddled by a website. “Stop wasting your time, I am not aware about this move.”

Speaking on Friday at an arms exhibition in South Africa, the company’s Deputy Director Alexander Mikheyev, disclosed to the Russian International News Agency that Uganda has contacted them with a view to purchase six more Sukhoi Su-30 multirole fighter jets to add to its earlier half a dozen collection it bought early this year.

“Uganda signed its first contract to buy six Su-30MK2 fighters this year, he said.” Now, we are talking about an option, the Ugandans expressed interest in buying another six aircraft of this type,” Rianovosti quoted Mr Mikheyev as saying.

The government in April also first denied reports that it had bought six new fighter jets from Rosoboronexport, valued at about Shs654 billion.

The deal turned out to be controversial when investigation found that government took $740 million (about Shs1.7 trillion) worth of taxpayers’ money from Bank of Uganda to buy the fighter jets and other military hardware from an unknown country.

In the same conference, Mr Mikheyev also said that his company, Rosoboronexport, has also signed a contract to sell six Mi-17 helicopters to Ghana.

Other deals
The Russian arms exporter is also discussing with a number of countries for the creation of post-sale maintenance centres for Russian-made helicopters sold to these countries.

A team of Rosoboronexport officials is currently in South Africa as part of the Russian delegation attending Africa Aerospace and Defence arms show in Pretoria (September 19-23).

Russia is expected to be one of the largest exhibitors at the event, along with Germany and the US. The company said in a press statement that Russia will present several full-scale weapon systems together for the first time at the international arms exhibition Africa Aerospace and Defence 2012.

“The exhibition in the Republic of South Africa is the largest one on the continent, and it plays an extremely important role in strengthening our positions in Africa. We have planned a very tight schedule of meetings at this exhibition on many issues concerning air defence, air, land and sea systems. And we expect it to be very fruitful”, says the deputy director general of Rosoboronexport.

The Rosoboronexport delegation expects that visitors to the exhibition will pay special attention to advanced Russian-made defence products.
In the air systems segment are the Mi-17 and Mi-35 type helicopters, MiG-29M/M2 and Su-30MK2 fighters as well as the new Yak-130 combat trainer aircraft.

The statement further states that the military technical cooperation of Russia with African states was given fresh momentum by visits of the President of the Russian Federation to the Republic of South Africa in September 2006, to Egypt, Angola, Namibia and Nigeria in July 2009. Russia also was visited by Presidents of Angola in October 2006, of Uganda in August 2009, of Namibia in May 2010, of the Republic of South Africa in August 2010, and of Equatorial Guinea in June 2011.