Wednesday July 18, 2018
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Iraq lifts ban on international flights to Kurdish airports

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Haider al-Abadi issues a statement lifting ban of international flights on international airports. IANS
Haider al-Abadi issues a statement lifting ban of international flights on international airports. IANS
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  • Iraq lifts the ban on international flights to Kurdish airports
  • Prime minister, Haider al-Abadi issues a statement
  • He also talked about security o the airports

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on Tuesday lifted a ban on international flights to two airports in Erbil and Sulaimaniyah in the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan.

A statement by his office said Abadi signed a decree to lift the ban after receiving positive response from the Kurdish local authorities “to restore the federal authority in the two airports in accordance with the Constitution of Iraq”.

Also Read: US Backtracks on Iraqi, Kurd Cease-fire Claim

Abadi made the announcement during his meeting with the officers of the regional Interior Ministry who were working at the two airports, Xinhua news agency cited the statement as saying.

He also said that a new security directorate will be established to protect the airports in the Kurdish region and it will be under command and control of the federal Interior Ministry.

All the regional airports and border crossings will be linked directly to the main control system in Baghdad, similar to what is done in the other Iraqi airports and crossing, the statement said.

He also talked about the security of airports.

The passports and national ID offices and the employees at the airports of Erbil and Sulaimaniyah will also be linked to the federal Interior Ministry, it added.

Tensions rose between Baghdad and the region of Kurdistan after the Kurds held a controversial referendum last September to approve the independence of the Kurdistan region and the disputed areas.

The Iraqi government later imposed the flights ban on the Kurdish region as part of a package of punitive measures that also included blocking all the border crossings outside the federal control.

The ban on international flights on the region’s international airports of Erbil and Sulaimaniyah forced passengers to apply for an Iraqi visa to transit through Baghdad and Basra international airports to go or leave the Kurdish region.

The independence of Kurdistan is opposed not only by the Iraqi central government, but also by other countries as it would threaten the territorial integrity of Iraq and undermine the fight against the terror group Islamic State.

Iraq’s neighbouring countries, especially Turkey, Iran and Syria, fear that the Iraqi Kurds’ pursuit of independence threatens their own territorial integrity by inspiring the Kurdish population in those countries to seek independence. IANS

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Report: Twitter Users Who Joined Before Age 13 Facing Ban

The Motherboard report said that some users did not enter a date of birth when they signed up on Twitter, but added it to their profile later

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Twitter Goes After Spams and Trolls, Some Users to Lose Followers
Twitter Goes After Spams and Trolls, Some Users to Lose Followers. Pixabay

After the European Union’s new data privacy regulations came into effect on May 25, Twitter started suspending users who, it believes, joined the platform before turning 13, the media reported.

But the process has become messy as this latest wave of suspension has affected many adults, including journalists, technology website Motherboard reported on Wednesday.

Among those affected is Canadian journalist Tom Yun, who is older than 13, the report said.

Twitter notified Yun that “in order to create a Twitter account, you must be at least 13 years old” and “you don’t meet these age requirements”, according to notifications from the microblogging site shared by the journalist on a new Twitter account.

Representational image.
Representational image. Pixabay

The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) stipulates that the age of consent for using online services should not be lower than 13.

The Motherboard report said that some users did not enter a date of birth when they signed up on Twitter, but added it to their profile later.

Twitter cannot legally keep content on its platform that was created by someone under the age of 13, but at the same time it cannot separate content created before age 13 and after, according to the company.

Also Read: Facebook, Twitter Introduce New Guidelines For Political Ads

So the microblogging site opted to suspend users whose provided date of birth indicates they were under the age of 13 when they signed up.

Although suspended users who are now eligible to sign up for the service can create a new account, the process of new suspensions reveals the repercussion for Twitter not enforcing its own rules regarding the minimum age as Twitter has long required that users must be over 13 years old to use the service. (IANS)