VIDEO: Protests mar Israel festival

first_imgThe event, dubbed “Camels in Oxford”, was put on as part of iFest, a two-week festival marking the 60th anniversary of the founding of Israel. A protester leads chanting on Broad Street First-year student James Norrie was among those protesting as part of the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign. A group chanting “Free free Palestine, occupation is a crime” have been at the entrance to the festival all afternoon, while slogans including “Celebrating Ethnic Cleansing” have been chalked onto the street. At lunchtime, the Network of Oxford Women for Justice and Peace held an hour-long silent vigil dressed in black cloaks. “The weather has been kind, people are having a great time and seem to be interested.” However, OICS committee member Jacob Turner was happy with how the event had gone.  He insisted that Israeli culture and politics could be kept seperate. center_img Police said that the protests had been peaceful and that no arrests had been made.  Protesters today descended on a Broad Street event organised by the Oxford Israeli Cultural Society (OICS). “I don’t think they [the protesters] have managed to politicise the event.  We got across the message that we wanted to.  People respond better to food being handed out than to shouting,” he said. “This is a celebration of a racialised state, the consequence of which is the occupation of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians,” he said. See also:Comment: Celebrating ethnic cleansing? Comment: OICS responselast_img read more

Controversial study claims there are only two types of tiger

first_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Email Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwecenter_img Tiger numbers have dwindled worldwide, but tiger types may also be about to take a big hit. A controversial new study suggests that instead of nine subspecies of tiger, there are only two. The find could have a dramatic impact on tiger conservation, though not everyone agrees with the study’s conclusions.The nearly 4000 tigers that remain in the wild are usually classed into six subspecies: the Siberian tiger, the Bengal tiger, the South China tiger, the Sumatran tiger, the Indochinese tiger, and the Malayan tiger. Three other subspecies are listed as extinct: the Bali, Caspian, and Javan tigers.Scientists from the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research in Berlin investigated the differences between these subspecies by comparing skull measurements, fur pattern, ecology, and genetics. They used data that have already been published as well as collecting new data on several museum specimens of extinct subspecies. Combining the different traits, they found little evidence to reliably differentiate the nine subspecies. Instead, they report today in Science Advances, they propose just two subspecies: Sunda tigers, made up of Sumatran tigers plus the extinct Javan and Bali tigers, and continental tigers, encompassing all the rest. Genetically, there were differences between the subspecies to be found, says Andreas Wilting, one of the authors of the paper. “But if we looked at all the traits together, we could only reliably distinguish two subspecies of tigers.”The paper will surely cause a stir, says Urs Breitenmoser, a zoologist at the University of Bern, who was not involved in the study. “But I find the work quite convincing and in keeping with other findings in recent years,” like a paper that suggested the Caspian tiger and the Siberian tiger were the same subspecies, he says.Breitenmoser is co-chair of the cat specialist group of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, the organization that draws up the red list of threatened species. Two years ago, the cat specialist group asked a task force to update the taxonomy of all wild cats. Results are expected by the end of this year. “They are going to look at this new proposal as well,” Breitenmoser says.Still, critics are pouncing. Collapsing the three Sunda subspecies into a single one may be reasonable, says Stephen O’Brien, a geneticist at the Theodosius Dobzhansky Center for Genome Bioinformatics in St. Petersburg, Russia, who generated some of the genetic data used in the paper. But the continental tiger shows enough differences genetically to be considered six separate subspecies.Part of the problem is that tigers have had little time to evolve separate subspecies. Fossils suggest that the animals roamed across large parts of Asia 2 million years ago, but then something catastrophic happened. Genetic analysis suggests that about 70,000 years ago most of the animals were killed, probably when Toba, a supersized volcano on Sumatra, erupted. Probably just one small population survived, and all the variation seen today evolved in the last 70,000 years.That is enough time for separate subspecies to be distinguishable genetically, but not morphologically, argues Shu-Jin Luo, a geneticist at Peking University in Beijing who works on endangered species. “Genetic data is much more reliable and objective than morphology,” she says. The nine subspecies can be distinguished genetically and that should be enough, she argues. That’s why she is skeptical of the new study, which also relied on anatomy and ecology.If the new classification is adopted, it would spell some major changes for efforts to save the tiger. “The good thing is that it will make conservation easier”, says Volker Homes, a conservation specialist at the Worldwide Fund for Nature in Germany. For instance, Indian tigers, of which there may be up to 2000, could be used to bolster the population of South Chinese tigers, which are probably extinct in the wild, he says. Also, thousands of tigers born in zoos to parents of various subspecies would suddenly be eligible for breeding and rewilding programs.But there may be negative consequences as well, Homes warns. Many countries are proud of hosting a unique tiger and classing several of these into one subspecies may translate into less effort to save them. “There is a danger that some countries don’t feel as responsible for protecting the tiger anymore, if it is not ‘their’ unique tiger.”last_img read more