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Friday, June 22, 2018

PHOTOGRAPHY: Week in pictures June 16 -22 via BBC - THANK YOU

BBC selection of some of the most striking news photographs taken around the world this week.

A Mexican football fan enjoys the World Cup party atmosphere on Nikolskaya Street, near Red Square in Moscow, Russia.Image copyrightCHRISTOPHER FURLONG/GETTY IMAGES
Image captionA Mexican football fan enjoys the World Cup party atmosphere on Nikolskaya Street, near Red Square in Moscow. Defending champions Germany suffered a shock 1-0 defeat by Mexico in a thrilling World Cup match in Moscow.
People gather on the ridge overlooking the Avebury Neolithic henge monument, a UNESCO World Heritage site, as they watch the sun rise on June 21, 2018 in Wiltshire, England.Image copyrightMATT CARDY/GETTY IMAGES
Image captionPeople gather on the ridge overlooking the Avebury Neolithic henge monument, a UNESCO World Heritage site, as they watch the sun rise on 21 June in Wiltshire, England. Constructed in the Third Millennium BC, the Neolithic monument, one of the best known prehistoric sites in Britain, contains the largest megalithic stone circle in the world.
People celebrate ceasefire in Rodat district of Nangarhar province, Afghanistan, 16 June 2018.Image copyrightPARWIZ/REUTERS
Image captionPeople celebrate the Taliban's ceasefire to mark the festival of Eid in the Rodat district of Nangarhar province, Afghanistan.
US First Lady Melania Trump departs Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland 21 June 2018 wearing a jacket emblazoned with the words "I really don't care, do you?" following her surprise visit with child migrants on the US Mexico border.Image copyrightMANDEL NGAN/AFP
Image captionFirst Lady Melania Trump has been criticised for the choice of her jacket worn on a trip to a migrant child detention centre in Texas. The coat featured graffiti writing on the back with the words "I really don't care, Do u?
People take photos with their phones as Lord Vestey, Prince Andrew, Duke of York, Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Anne, Princess Royal arrive by carriage to Royal Ascot.Image copyrightCHRIS JACKSON/GETTY IMAGES
Image captionPeople take photos as Lord Vestey, Prince Andrew, Duke of York, Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Anne, Princess Royal arrive by carriage at Royal Ascot.
A participant competes during a soap box derby in Colombelles, near Caen, France, on 17 June 2018.Image copyrightCHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AFP
Image captionA participant competes in a soap box derby in Colombelles, near Caen in France.
Firefighters battle a blaze at the Mackintosh Building at the Glasgow School of Art for the second time in four years on 16 June 2018 in Glasgow, Scotland.Image copyrightJEFF J MITCHELL/GETTY IMAGES
Image captionFirefighters battle a blaze at the Mackintosh Building at the Glasgow School of Art for the second time in four years.
Dr Samira al-Ghamdi, 47, a practicing psychologist, drives around the side roads of a neighbourhood as she prepares to hit the road on Sunday as a licensed driver, in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on 21 June 2018.Image copyrightZOHRA BENSEMRA/REUTERS
Image captionDr Samira al-Ghamdi drives around her neighbourhood in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, as she prepares to hit the road as a licensed driver. The lifting of the driving ban is a huge moment for the women of Saudi Arabia. Previously they could face arrest and a fine if caught driving, and were reliant on male members of their family to drive them, or hire private drivers.
A woman collects lotus flowers at a lake in Hanoi, Vietnam, 20 June 2018Image copyright/LUONG THAI LINH/EPA
Image captionA woman collects lotus flowers at a lake in Hanoi, Vietnam. The plant is highly valued as its petals can be used in both salads and tea, while the seeds are used in desserts.
Mourners pay their respects during a vigil held in memory of murdered Melbourne comedian, 22-year-old Eurydice Dixon, at Princess Park on 18 June 2018 in Melbourne, Australia.Image copyrightMICHAEL DODGE/GETTY IMAGES
Image captionMourners pay their respects during a vigil held in memory of murdered Melbourne comedian, 22-year-old Eurydice Dixon, at Princess Park in Melbourne, Australia. Dixon was murdered as she walked home through Princes Park after a comedy performance.
All photographs belong to the copyright holders as marked.

UGANDA: Managing Director James Tumusiime leaves The Observer

KAMPALA (THE OBSERVER) - After more than 12 years at the helm as Managing Director of Observer Media Limited, James Tumusiime, 45, on Wednesday left the position to pursue a career in academia and put his health first.

Addressing staff at the Kamwokya-based media house, JT as he is fondly known, said: “When we started, there were 10 shareholders who were also employed by the newspaper. Over the years we have demonstrated that this newspaper is bigger than individuals, as many moved on [two passed away] and that time has come for me”.JT (third right) in a group photo with Observer staff

JT, whose 10-year struggle with debilitating migraine headaches and inflamed sinuses was well-known among staff, had taken a two-month sick leave for proper treatment, but his doctor recommended he should not continue in the stressful newsroom environment.

Used to giving 100 per cent editorially and in his other roles, JT faced his staff members with the difficult decision on Wednesday. His departure was met with glowing praise from his team, who praised him for taking the paper through some of its toughest storms and for being an inspirational leader who would be missed.

“When our founding MD Kevin [Ogen Aliro] died in November 2005 when The Observer was less than two years old, many told us to our faces the paper would collapse. JT was then just an editor, but we chose him to steer us forward and he has done so amazingly since,” The Observer’s Administrative Director Carolyne Nakazibwe said, as staff gave their outgoing MD sustained applause.



The Observer wishes JT well as he remains a cardinal part of the family he helped raise. In the interim, Finance Director Pius Mutekani Katunzi is Acting MD.

COMMENTS


0#1 Lakwena 2018-06-22 17:02
In other words, thank JT for holding the fort this far. We also wish him well, health and wealth wherever he is heading.

Although it isn't that easy, we as much wish the new MD and remain team well.
-1#2 Jama 2018-06-22 19:15
Wish you the best and we shall continue to pray for your recovery.

Meanwhile we shall continue to accompany those you have left behind.

0#3 Apollo 2018-06-22 19:28
Speechless! Whatever and however you did over there, we (I hope) never had enough of it.

About Migraines, you may consider some oriental remedies. There are several of them. Best Wishes.

-1#4 Akot 2018-06-22 19:36
James Tumusiime,

Thank you for giving us chance to make our views heard, even when Ugandans have no taken advantage to put in good use services offered by The Observer to come Together to make their statement as to whom the country belongs!

The Observer continues to give Ugandans chance to talk to one another, share views, yet our people don't see it's through papers like this that people call on one another & UNITE for common purposes, especially to bring change of governance!

As things get worse for Ugandans, I pray it's Ugandans who will UNITE to throw Museveni out & not him Reforming the Republic alone as he wishes & justs goes on!

Ugandans MUST wake up & put to good use space/chance The Observer offers, not to complain for yet another 30 years while doing NOTHING to remove Museveni, but to UNITE & throw him out!...

-1#5 Akot 2018-06-22 19:40
...James Tumusiime, thank you so much, I pray you continue to render service to Ugandans, who, I pray, will finally wake up to appreciate the kind of human work you do, which today is the only means for people to come together to: discuss, share views, unite for common purposes, help one another even from a distance to bring the changes they are/will be proud to make their children part of!

Ugandans are not even aware that without The Observer, Akot would never have had the chance to bore the with: UNITY, citing our dirty past so that we see it's us who have the power to bring the changes necessary then ensure we make it different after & this can only be through our UNITY for common purposes, just as the rest of the word does!...

-1#6 Akot 2018-06-22 19:45
...The Observe is means for Ugandans to talk to one another, especially when public gathering that does not come to praise Museveni-campaign for him...are not allowed: Kayihura made it a point of honour to put in place the most totalitarian army/police that work for only Museveni, right?

The only chance Ugandans have is through media & if our people don't use it to UNITE, they will never get rid of Museveni nor will the outside world say a word about them or how they are ruled!

Just yester day a UN official talked only about refugees in Uganda!

James Tumusiime, good luck for your next post!

ENERGY: Oil report for June 22, 2018


OPEC’s Agreement Sends Oil Prices Soaring

OILPRICE.COM - OPEC issued a 
communique on Friday that called on a return to 100 percent compliance for the group, down from 152 percent in May. The announcement deferred country-specific allocations, likely because they could not agree on the details. The decision likely means that any country with spare capacity will be able to boost production. In practice, Saudi Arabia and Russia will carry the lion’s share. How individual countries make decisions about how much to produce, while still trying to stay below a collective cap, opens up a lot of uncertainty.

Oil up on vague outcome. Oil prices moved up on Friday morning, on expectations that the result from the OPEC+ meeting won’t lead to a supply glut. In recent days, there seemed to be a bit of convergence on a plan to boost production, perhaps by around 600,000 bpd. That amount would merely offset the declines from Venezuela over the past year, and would not plug the entire supply deficit facing the market. “The market caught up a little in terms of realizing that the rumored increase was less than what is necessary to balance the market,” Emily Ashford, director of energy research at Standard Chartered, told 
the WSJ. “Any increase in production will come at the expense of spare capacity so that leaves the market much more vulnerable to future supply shocks,” she added.

OPEC eyed 1 mb/d increase, but couldn’t agree. OPEC’s technical committee recommended a supply increase of about 1 million barrels per day, although press reports widely noted that such an increase would likely only be nominal, and actual barrels put onto the market would reach only about 600,000 bpd because several countries have no ability to boost output. The recommendation came even as Iranian oil minister Bijan Zanganeh walked out of a meeting on Thursday night, although he met with his Saudi counterpart Friday morning. The discord likely led to the vague decision on 100 percent compliance, rather than on country-specific increases.

Oil and gas methane emissions higher than expected. A new 
study finds that the oil and gas industry might be leaking more methane from operations than is commonly thought. The study puts the methane leakage rate at about 2.3 percent of total production, or 60 percent higher than the EPA estimates. The difference is the equivalent of heating 10 million homes, and it also cancels out some of the net climate benefit that comes from switching from coal to gas for electricity.

EPA to put biofuels obligations onto large refiners. In a sign of retreat after outrage from the biofuels and corn ethanol industries, the EPA is 
reportedly set to propose putting biofuels obligations onto large refiners. The agency had issued a series of waivers to smaller refiners, allowing them to get out of buying and blending biofuels, to the anger of the ethanol industry. After the political fallout, the EPA seems to be reversing course, but will shift those requirements onto large refiners. The move is a sign of the political power of the corn lobby, as well as Midwestern Republicans in Congress.

Kimmeridge exits Carrizo, after activist campaign. Activist private equity group Kimmeridge Energy Management 
sold its position in Carrizo Oil & Gas (NASDAQ: CRZO) this week after a campaign to try to change the company’s strategy. Kimmeridge tried to get Carrizo to sell its oil fields in the Eagle Ford and to shift the company’s focus to the Permian. However, Carrizo resisted and Kimmeridge ultimately decided to sell its 8.1 percent stake. Maintaining Eagle Ford assets turned out to be a winner, now that Permian prices have plunged because of pipeline constraints.

U.S. natural gas output to soar 60 percent. A new report from IHS finds that U.S. natural gas production could jump 60 percent over the next 20 years, a finding that suggests the shale gas revolution has decades of running room. Dry gas production could hit 81 billion cubic feet per day this year, but rise to 118 bcf/d by 2037. Natural gas is expected to capture about 50 percent of the electricity market by 2040, up from about a third today.

Libyan forces retake oil terminal. Libya briefly saw the outage of about 450,000 bpd of supply because of attacks from militants, combined with the destruction of several oil storage tanks. Reuters reports that East Libyan forces have retaken the shuttered oil ports of Es Sider and Ras Lanuf, the two largest in the country. The three storage tanks that were destroyed will take years to repair. “Libyan production is very low but we are going to resume very soon,” Mustafa Sanalla, chairman of Libya’s National Oil Corp.,
told reporters in Vienna. “After a couple of days we will resume, we start our operations hopefully.”

Permian DUCs to rise. Pipeline bottlenecks are forcing Permian drillers to leave more and more wells 
uncompleted. The drilled but uncompleted wells (DUCs) has more than doubled from the start of 2017, and should continue to rise as Permian pipelines fill up. “Some companies will have to shut in production, some companies will move rigs away, and some companies will be able to continue growing because they have firm transportation,” Pioneer Natural Resources (NYSE: PXD) CEO Scott Sheffield said.

Corpus Christi port receives funding for upgrade. The Port of Corpus Christi
approved $217 million for upgrades to equip the facility to handle large oil tankers. The 1-million-barrel Suezmax and the 2-million-barrel VLCCs can only partially load at the facility right now. The upgrade will expand the port’s – and the country’s – export capacity.

Global Energy Advisory - June 22nd 2018

The hottest shale oil play in the United States may be nearing its limit in production because of a growing shortage of pipeline capacity. Drillers are already being forced to leave wells unfracked because they have no way of transporting the oil from the wellhead to refineries and in three to four months they might have to start actually shutting down wells because the existing pipelines will be filled to capacity, unable to take in any more crude.

The pipeline bottleneck problem in the Permian started garnering media attention only recently as production in the play boomed, reaching an estimated 3.277 million bpd this month, according to the latest EIA figures. There are plans for new pipelines that will add over a million bpd of capacity but these are yet to be built and until they are the problem will remain.

Pioneer Natural Resources chairman this week said some drillers will be forced to shutter production and others will have to move their rigs elsewhere. A lucky few with a certain pipeline capacity will get to stay and continue pumping as usual, but they are not without their problems.

A recent IHS Markit report says that Big Oil companies in the Permian will need to cough up as much as $30 billion between now and 2020 to meet their production targets for the play. This, the market research firm said, will mean more acreage purchases, mergers and acquisitions as well as higher production costs as the greater demand for oilfield services will boost prices for these services.

Amid shareholder pressure for keeping costs down, Big Oil in the Permian, which includes Exxon, Shell, and Chevron, will have to be really ingenious to juggle these costs with the rising prices for services in the Permian and the need to buy land and smaller drillers. The pipeline capacity shortage will certainly not help them achieve this goal.

Deals, Mergers & Acquisitions

•    Equinor has finalized the acquisition of a 25% non-operated stake in the Roncador oil field from Brazil’s Petrobras for a cash consideration of $2 billion and additional payments of up to $550 million contingent on investments in the field’s production growth. Roncador is the third-largest producing oil field in Brazil, located in the prolific Campos basin. The stake will add some 60,000 bpd to Equinor’s equity production in Brazil.

•    BP has pulled out of a deal with the Australian division of Woolworths for the acquisition of its fuel station network. The supermajor said the $1.32-billion acquisition no longer fitted in with its strategic objectives. Woolworths operated 527 fuel stations and convenience stores across Australia in 2016 when the deal was first announced.

•    Equinor has bought 50% in a 118 MW solar power project in Argentina that will have the capacity to power 80,000 households when completed. The construction should be completed by late 2019 and will cost an estimated $95 million. The other 50% of the project were acquired by another Norwegian company, Scatec Solar. Equinor and Scatec will provide 40% of the equity financing for the project and the rest will come from a bridge loan, again supplied by Equinor. The total of Equinor’s financial participation in the project is $77 million. The final investment decision will e made later this year.

•    Shell has sold its 15% stake in Malaysian LNG and its interests in two offshore fields in Norway as part of its divestment program that followed the acquisition of BG Group three years ago. From the sale of the Malaysian interest Shell will pocket some $640 million and the two Norwegian field stakes will fetch $556 million. The divestment program envisages proceeds of some $30 billion.

Tenders, Auctions & Contracts

•    ConocoPhillips has awarded three contracts for the front-end engineering design of its Barossa offshore gas and condensate field in Australia’s Northern Territory. Conoco operates the Barossa field in partnership with South Korean SK E&S and Australian Santos Energy. Gas from the field will feed the Darwin LNG project after production from the current source of gas for the liquefaction facility, from the Bayu-Undan field will cease in the early 2020s.

•    Mozambique is close to finalizing the contracts for the development of gas fields awarded in a 2015 tender, with winners including Exxon and Eni. The U.S. company plans to drill two wells in the African country once the contracts are signed, and Eni has plans for one well, all to be drilled next year. Mozambique has estimated gas reserves of some 180 trillion cubic feet.

Discovery & Development

•    Nexen Energy, a unit of Chinese CNOOC, said it will go forward with its $300.3-million expansion project in the Alberta oilsands. The expansion will increase bitumen production from the Long Lake project by 26,000 bpd daily, with first of the new oil expected in 2020. The Chinese company’s decision is a rare one amid an exodus of foreign companies from Canada’s oilsands on pipeline bottlenecks and higher production costs but Nexen said in a statement it remains committed to its Canadian operations.

•    Exxon is looking into reports of an attack on a gas pipeline construction project in Papua New Guinea. The project is part of Exxon’s PNG LNG project, which earlier this year suffered a temporary shutdown after a devastating quake. The company said the construction project is going as planned, despite ongoing tensions in the Highlands region, where the pipeline is being built.

•    Total said it expected to start pumping oil in Uganda no earlier than 2021, which is a year later than the initial deadline for the start of production in the east African country. The final investment decision on the Tilenga project that Total operates in partnership with CNOOC and Tullow Oil as minority partner, is seen to be made later this year and production is slated to begin 36 months later. Uganda has estimated reserves of about 6.5 billion barrels of oil and gas but production launch has been repeatedly delayed by disputes between oil companies and the government.

•    Exxon is planning an LNG import terminal on the eastern coast of Australia in anticipation of a projected supply crunch emerging in the beginning of next decade. Exxon is currently active in gas production in the Gippsland basin off the coast of Victoria but output there is seen to drop by half from its current level by 2022. Importing gas seems inevitable and Exxon will face competition from two more LNG import projects, one from AGL Energy and one from Japan’s JERA.

Regulatory Updates

•    Nigeria’s High Court has dismissed a case brought by Shell against the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency for a $3.6-billion fine imposed by the agency on the supermajor for an oil spill from the Bonga field. The company argued the agency had no powers to impose such penalties but the judge ruled in favor of NOSDRA.

•    The Stockholm Court of Appeals has suspended a ruling by the Court of Arbitration in favor of Ukraine’s state gas company Naftogaz against Russia’s Gazprom. The suspension means Gazprom could halt asset seizures pursued by Naftogaz across Europe. The Ukrainian company has appealed the court’s decision and most recently said it had been granted the right to seize Gazprom assets in Britain by a local court.

Politics, Geopolitics & Conflict

•    Israel’s security services have arrested a former energy and infrastructure minister on allegations of spying for Iran.

•    Saudi-led coalition forces have seized the airport in Hodeida, the port city that the coalition and the Houthi rebels have been fighting over for a week already.

•    Colombia has a new president who has bet on improving the investment climate in the Andean country, cutting taxes, and reducing the government’s participation in the economy.














BUSINESS: Rat Slips Into Bank, Chews Over $18,000 Cash Inside ATM

Authorities in India found shredded money inside a local bank and a hungry rat is believed to be the culprit. The damaged money is pictured on June 19, 2018, in Tinsukia, India. Photo: AFP/Getty Images

Rat Slips Into Bank, Chews Over $18,000 Cash Inside ATM

IBTIMES - A rat with expensive taste may have been responsible for damaged currency after a dead rodent was reportedly found in a pile of chewed up money inside an ATM in India.

Technicians responding to a call on June 11 to fix a broken ATM at the State Bank of India in the town of Tinsukia in Assam discovered a dead rat inside the machine alongside a pile of shredded Indian rupee notes, a State Bank of India (SBI) official told Reuters on Thursday.

Bank officials thought the machine was "out of order" since May 20 after patrons complained it stopped producing money.

"The ATM was out of order for a few days and when our technicians opened the kiosk we were shocked to find shredded notes and a dead rat," said SBI branch manager Chandan Sharma.

Multiple reports have the destroyed bank notes at an estimated worth between 1.2 and 1.3 million rupees ($17,662 to $19,000 USD). The notes consisted of 500-rupee and 2,000-rupee denominations, ABC News reported.

Authorities believe the rodent entered the machine through a tiny hole near the ATM's wiring, police superintendent Mugdhajyoti Dev Mahanta said, according to the Guardian.

"We've checked and there is no other criminal or conspiracy angle to the incident. It looks like the rats entered the machine through a small opening for some wires," he said.

SBI owns more than 50,000 ATMs in India, according to Reuters. Many of those machines carry a closed-circuit camera for security purposes. However, police did not find footage of a rat entering a machine after inspecting the surveillance camera, Sharma told Reuters.

Out of the 2.9 million rupees ($42,685) in the ATM, about 1.7 million rupees ($25,022) were undamaged and recovered from the machine. Meanwhile, authorities have launched a full investigation into the incident and look to prevent it from happening again.

TRUMP: Forget Deplorables, You’re Nazis now: Ex-CNBC host smears Trump voters


© REUTERS / Jonathan Ernst

SPUTNIK - In a shocking television outburst, former CNBC host Donny Deutsch upped the ante from calling Trump voters a “basket of deplorables” to “evil” and “bad guys,” comparing them to Nazis for supporting the President of the United States.

Talking to MSNBC TV show Morning Joe on Friday, Deutsch lambasted supporters of US President Donald Trump, calling them all sorts of bad names, which include "evil", "bad guys" and Nazis, not unlike Hillary Clinton, who called potential Trump voters a "basket of deplorables" back in 2016, when she was competing with him for the White House.

According to Deutsch, Trump voters bear full responsibility for any actions the president takes, which he characterized as "evil."

"We no longer can say Trump's the bad guy," he said. "If you're voting for Trump, you're the bad guy."

"If you vote for Trump, you're ripping children from parents," he said, referring to US border policy of taking children of illegal immigrants to internment camps, where children await being transferred to next of kin or a sponsor while their parents go to jail.

"If you vote for Trump, then you, the voter, not Donald Trump, are standing at the border, like Nazis, going ‘you here,' ‘you here'."

Deutsch is not the first one to compare the processing centers for children of illegal immigrants to Nazi practices. Earlier last week, former CIA director Michael Hayden tweeted a photo of a Nazi death camp with the caption, "other governments have separated mothers from children." And the online encyclopedia Wikipedia recently recategorized the US' migrant camps as "concentration and internment camps," placing them alongside the likes of Nazi death camps and those used by the British to control native populations in Kenya and Malaya.

Such comparisons sparked outrage among many. Earlier this week, CNN's Wolf Blitzer, talking in an interview with Hayden, said his grandparents had been murdered at the Auschwitz concentration camp and that no matter how much controversy Trump's policy sparked, "it certainly is not Auschwitz."

SOMALIA: For once, Mogadishu can watch World Cup with little fear - MAYBE UPDF HELD OFF THIS TIME!

FILE - A mural depicting a soccer player is seen on a wall of a stadium in the Hodan district of Mogadishu, Somalia, June 13, 2017.

For Once, Mogadishu Can Watch World Cup With Little Fear

VOA - For years, residents of Mogadishu wanting to watch the World Cup on TV have done so at risk to life and limb. Islamist militant group al-Shabab — an opponent of both sports and entertainment in general — threatened violence against anyone watching the games.

The danger was especially high in 2010, when al-Shabab fighters controlled most of the Somali capital and gangs of Islamists patrolled the city, searching for anyone trying view the games in secret.

"The lucky few, who could watch in the government-controlled areas at the time, did so having one eye on the TV and the other on the door, with the sound turned down," said Ahmed Aden, a 20-year-old Mogadishu resident.

The 2018 World Cup has been different. The tournament is still young, but there have been no reported attacks on Somalis watching the games on TV, either in public or private. Residents of Somalia's capital have been gathering to watch the World Cup on big screens inside hotels, restaurants, and government centers.

While watching a match between Australia and Denmark with dozens of young men in a Mogadishu restaurant, Somalia's Security Ministry spokesman Abdiaziz Hildhiban said the change is due to improved security and a greater willingness of people to ignore what he termed the "terrorists' psychological war."

"For Mogadishu residents, this year is different from the previous years because for the first time in many years, they can freely watch the World Cup in groups with no direct threat from al-Shabab," said Hildhiban."No more physical and psychological war can threaten our youth from enjoying sports."

Shooting soccer fans

Al-Shabab contends that sports are un-Islamic and a waste of time, and that they turn young men away from the group's raison d'etre, jihad.

Al-Shabab fighters shot to death two people watching a World Cup match in a cinema in 2006, and killed more than 70 when it bombed two World Cup parties in Uganda's capital in 2010.

FILE - Damaged chairs and tables lie among the debris strewn after a bomb attack outside an Ethiopian restaurant in Kampala, Uganda, July 12, 2010.

Somalis wishing to watch the Cup were exposed to such violence because few individuals could afford satellite TV in Mogadishu, meaning public screenings were often the only way matches could be seen.

However, an increased presence of Somali government soldiers and African Union peacekeepers, along with private guards at many viewing sites, has made Somalis feel safer about enjoying the World Cup in public.

"In 2014, such crowds of soccer watchers could be an easy target for terrorist attacks, but now it comes after the first Ramadan without a single terrorist major attack in the city for years due to the security we beefed up," Hildhiban said.

The threat of attack has not entirely receded.In April, at least five people were killed and 10 others injured after a bomb was detonated during a soccer game in Somalia's port city of Barawe, a former al-Shabab stronghold.In Mogadishu, al-Shabab has bombed and/or shot up more than 20 hotels and restaurants in the last five years, killing hundreds.

But it is becoming harder for football-haters to keep Somalis away from the country's favorite sport.High-speed internet and satellite TV have taken off in the past few years, allowing more people to watch games from the privacy of their homes.

Somalia's minister for youth and sport, Khadija Mohamed Diriye, believes athletics and the city's reviving entertainment scene will "distract Somali youth from pursuing extremist ideologies and the deadly migration to Europe."

ETHIOPIA: Who Is the Queen of Sheba - VIDEO



Who Is the Queen of Sheba in the Bible?
Investigating the Queen of Sheba and her kingdom



BIBLE HISTORY DAILY - Who is the Queen of Sheba in the Bible? Here is one artist’s depiction of the Queen of Sheba. It comes from the Medieval manuscript Bellifortis by Conrad Kyeser and dates to c. 1405.Who is the Queen of Sheba? In the Bible we are introduced to an unnamed queen from the land of Sheba who travels to Jerusalem to meet King Solomon (see 1 Kings 10; 2 Chronicles 9). Accompanied by many attendants and camels, the Queen of Sheba brings a large quantity of spices, gold and precious stones with her. She is drawn to Jerusalem because of Solomon’s fame, and she tests the king with hard questions. Solomon is able to answer them all.

Impressed by Solomon’s wisdom—and by the riches of his kingdom—she proclaims, “Your wisdom and prosperity far surpass the report that I had heard” (1 Kings 10:7). The Queen of Sheba gives King Solomon 120 talents of gold, precious stones and the largest quantity of spices ever brought to Jerusalem (1 Kings 10:10). In return King Solomon gives the Queen of Sheba gifts and “every desire that she expressed” (1 Kings 10:13). After receiving these gifts, the queen returns to the land of Sheba with her retinue.

The Biblical account of the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon ends there, but later Jewish, Christian and Islamic sources have elaborated the story—adding details to the famous queen’s visit. In his article “Where Is the Land of Sheba—Arabia or Africa?”published in the September/October 2016 issue of Biblical Archaeology Review, Bar Kribus investigates the location of the land of Sheba and looks at the figure of the Queen of Sheba—both in the Bible and in a text called the Kebra Nagast.

The religion section of most bookstores includes an amazing array of Bibles. In our free eBook The Holy Bible: A Buyer’s Guide, prominent Biblical scholars Leonard Greenspoon and Harvey Minkoff expertly guide you through 21 different Bible translations (or versions) and address their content, text, style and religious orientation.

Dated between the 6th–14th centuries C.E., the Kebra Nagast (The Glory of Kings) is an important text to the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. It names the Queen of Sheba as the beautiful queen Makeda and identifies the land of Sheba as ancient Ethiopia. Kribus thoroughly examines the latter claim in his article “Where Is the Land of Sheba—Arabia or Africa?”

According to the Kebra Nagast, Queen Makeda travels to Jerusalem and has a love affair with King Solomon. Makeda then returns to the land of Sheba—giving birth to a son, Menelik, along the way. Menelik is raised in Ethiopia, but when he turns 22, he travels to Jerusalem to meet his father. King Solomon is delighted with his firstborn son and tries in vain to convince Menelik to remain in Israel and succeed him as king. However, Menelik chooses to return to the land of Sheba. Solomon sends the firstborn sons of Israel’s elders with his son from Israel to Ethiopia, and the Ark of the Covenant travels with them. To this day, many Ethiopians believe that the Ark of the Covenant resides within the Chapel of the Tablet next to the Church of Maryam Tsion in Aksum, Ethiopia.


Is this the final resting place of the Ark of the Covenant? Many Ethiopians believe that the Ark of the Covenant resides within the Chapel of the Tablet next to the Church of Maryam Tsion in Aksum, Ethiopia. They believe that the Ark traveled with Solomon’s firstborn son, Menelik, from Jerusalem to the land of Sheba. Where is the land of Sheba? According to the Kebra Nagast, it is ancient Ethiopia. Photo: “Maryam Sion in Axum Nebenbau Mit Der Bundeslade 2010” by Jensis65 is licensed under CC-by-SA-3.0

Ethiopians claim the Queen of Sheba as part of their heritage, and through her union with King Solomon, Ethiopians also claimed a connection between their kings and the Davidic monarchy of Israel. Bar Kribus explains: “Their [Ethiopian] kings were seen as direct descendants of the House of David, rulers by divine right.”

With 11 rock-hewn churches, Lalibela, Ethiopia, is understandably a place of pilgrimage for those in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Explore Lalibela’s spectacular subterranean churches in a web-exclusive slideshow >>

But is the land of Sheba truly ancient Ethiopia, as purported by the Kebra Nagast? Archaeological and historical sources document a Kingdom of Saba (Sheba) during Biblical times in modern-day Yemen. Those in ancient Ethiopia were fully aware of the Kingdom of Saba in southern Arabia—and sometimes even appropriated aspects of their culture.



The Queen of Sheba and King Solomon: Another depiction of the Queen of Sheba is seen in Giovanni Demin’s 19th-century painting Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, which shows the meeting of the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon.

Where is the land of Sheba? Is it in Africa or Arabia? Bar Kribus wades through history, archaeology, tradition and legend as he pieces together the story of the Queen of Sheba and investigates the land of Sheba. Who has the rightful claim to the Queen of Sheba? Read Kribus’s surprising conclusion in “Where Is the Land of Sheba—Arabia or Africa?”in the September/October 2016 issue of Biblical Archaeology Review.