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Progressive Alliance

The Progressive Alliance is a political international of social-democratic and progressive political parties and organisations founded on 22 May 2013 in Leipzig, Germany. The alliance was formed as an alternative to the existing Socialist International, of which many of its member parties are former or current members; the Progressive Alliance claims 140 participants from around the world. The first step towards the creation of the Progressive Alliance was the decision in January 2012 by Sigmar Gabriel chairman of the Social Democratic Party of Germany, to cancel payment of the SPD's £100,000 yearly membership fee to the Socialist International. Gabriel had been critical of the Socialist International's admittance and continuing inclusion of undemocratic political movements into the organization. An initial Conference of the Progressive Alliance was held in Rome, Italy on 14–15 December 2012, with representatives of 42 political parties attending, they included Pier Luigi Bersani, leader of the Democratic Party of Italy, Harlem Désir, Chair of the French Socialist Party, Hermes Binner, Chair of the Argentinian Socialist Party, Peter Shumlin, Democratic Governor of Vermont, Mustapha Ben Jafar, Secretary General of the Tunisian Democratic Forum for Labour and Liberties.

Present were representatives of the Indian National Congress, the Workers Party of Brazil, PASOK of Greece. The Dutch Labour Party supported the formation of the organization, as did the Swiss Socialist Party, the Social Democratic Party of Austria. During the Council of the Socialist International in Cascais, Portugal, on 4–5 February 2013, 50 political parties discussed on the sidelines the formation of the Progressive Alliance, including the Movement for Democratic Change of Zimbabwe; the official foundation of the organization was held on the 22 May 2013 in Leipzig, Germany, on the 150th anniversary of the formation of the General German Workers' Association, the predecessor of the SPD. The organization stated the aim of becoming the global network of "the progressive, social-democratic and labour movement", it was reported that representatives of 70 social-democratic political parties from across the world attended the event. The Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats group in the European Parliament joined the organization upon its official foundation.

Many member parties are affiliated to the Socialist International. In September 2013 the Democratic Party of Cyprus announced that it was negotiating to join the Progressive Alliance and that its representatives were to attend a seminar of the international in Stockholm on 24 October. On 4–5 December 2014, a Progressive Alliance conference was held in Lisbon for member parties of the S&D group. A regional seminar was held on 25 September 2015 in Batu Ferringhi, which hosted delegates from the Democratic Action Party of Malaysia, Democratic Party of Japan and Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle. On 25 April 2016 the organisation held a seminar in São Paulo hosted by the Workers' Party of Brazil; the Progressive Alliance lists the parties and organisations which participate in the network, rather than claiming members. Official website

Lockdown (Lost)

"Lockdown" is the 17th episode of the second season of the American drama television series Lost, the 42nd episode overall. The episode was directed by Stephen Williams, written by executive producers Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof, it first aired on ABC in the United States on March 29, 2006. The character of John Locke is featured in the episode's flashbacks, revealing how he broke up with his romantic partner Helen. In the present, the Dharma Initiative station that Locke is in and inexplicably places itself under lockdown, leaving him and his captive Henry Gale to find a way out and input the numbers before the station's countdown ends. Meanwhile, Jack plays a card game with Sawyer before a large package of food is discovered to have mysteriously dropped on the island. "Lockdown" was seen by an estimated 16.21 million American household viewers. The episode received positive reviews from critics, with praise given for the plot development and Emerson's performance. Locke is preparing to propose to his girlfriend, Helen, at a picnic, but while he is preparing the lunch, she notices Locke's father's name in the obituaries, so they postpone the picnic to attend the funeral.

No one else is there, except two mysterious men standing in the distance. There is a silver Mercedes with a driver who continuously glares at Locke throughout the funeral far away. At the conclusion of the service, Locke stands next to the coffin and says, "I forgive you." It is revealed that he has opened his own business inspecting homes. After checking the home of Nadia, he sees the same silver car near his house, finds that it is his father driving it, who had faked his own death to escape from the two men who are trying to kill him because of a "retirement con", he wants Locke to go to the bank to get the money for him from a safety deposit box, keep $200,000 as payment. After going to the safety deposit box and collecting the money, Locke returns home and encounters the two mysterious men who question him about the validity of his father's death and search his work bag; when Helen asks Locke about the situation, he says that he has not seen his father. When Locke meets up with his father at the motel, he tells his father that he is planning on marrying Helen.

But when he leaves, he sees Helen has followed him, she is hurt by his lies. She breaks up with Locke. Locke gets down on one knee and proposes, but Helen shakes her head and drives away, leaving Locke to stare at his father getting into a taxi cab to leave as well. Henry Gale tries to convince Locke and a suspicious Jack that he was making a bad joke about leading Sayid's group into a trap. After Jack and Locke argue about what to do next, Jack storms off, leaving Locke to put Henry back in the armory; when Jack reaches the beach, he sees Kate and Sawyer playing poker with some DHARMA Initiative playing cards. After showing that he knows a lot about how to play, he challenges Sawyer to a game to win back the medicine that Sawyer has been hoarding. Jack says he'll collect the medicine later. In the hatch, while Locke is pedaling on the stationary bike, he hears static noise coming from the speakers throughout the hatch though there are still 47 minutes left on the timer. A few seconds a female voice counts down from ten, the blast doors begin to shut when she reaches zero, but Locke wedges one open with a crowbar.

He enlists Henry Gale's help to further open the doors, forcing one up a couple of feet and sliding a toolbox underneath to prop it open. Locke tries to slide through the gap. One of the metal poles on the underside of the door impales his leg. Since the timer is still counting down, Locke tells Henry how to get into the computer room through the vents to input the numbers, Henry agrees to the mission on the condition that Locke will protect him from the other survivors. While Gale is gone, the timer begins to beep signaling the beginning of the one-minute countdown the alarm stops, there is a whirring noise and the lights go out. Seconds blacklights come on and for thirty seconds a diagram is revealed on the blast door that Locke is trapped under, it appears to be a multi-layered map of the island, but it is only shown before the ordinary lights turn back on and the blast doors retract to their normal positions. Henry tells Locke that he did what Locke asked him to do. On the beach, Kate sees a flashing light in the jungle, when she and Jack investigate, they find an enormous package of food attached to a parachute.

They are joined by Sayid, Ana Lucia, Charlie, who have returned from their expedition. When Jack enters the hatch, he grabs Henry off of the injured Locke, though Locke tries to defend Henry, saying that he was helping him after the blast doors came down. Sayid confirms that they found the balloon and the grave and they were where Henry had said they were. However, Sayid adds that he was still skeptical as to the validity of Henry's story, so he dug up the grave to verify it was his wife's, found a man's body instead, which held the photo ID of a black man named Henry Gale; this confirms the survivors' suspicion. "Lockdown" first aired in the United States on March 29, 2006. An estimated 16.21 million viewers watched the episode. Writing in 2009 for IGN, Chris Carabott gave the episode 8.7 out of 10, pra