click links in text for more info
SUMMARY / RELATED TOPICS

Palestinian National Authority

The Palestinian National Authority is the interim self-government body established in 1994 following the Gaza–Jericho Agreement to govern the Gaza Strip and Areas A and B of the West Bank, as a consequence of the 1993 Oslo Accords. Following elections in 2006 and the subsequent Gaza conflict between the Fatah and Hamas parties, its authority had extended only in areas A and B of the West Bank. Since January 2013, the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority uses the name "State of Palestine" on official documents; the Palestinian Authority was formed in 1994, pursuant to the Oslo Accords between the Palestine Liberation Organization and the government of Israel, as a five-year interim body. Further negotiations were meant to take place between the two parties regarding its final status. According to the Oslo Accords, the Palestinian Authority was designated to have exclusive control over both security-related and civilian issues in Palestinian urban areas and only civilian control over Palestinian rural areas.

The remainder of the territories, including Israeli settlements, the Jordan Valley region and bypass roads between Palestinian communities, were to remain under Israeli control. East Jerusalem was excluded from the Accords. Negotiations with several Israeli governments had resulted in the Authority gaining further control of some areas, but control was lost in some areas when the Israel Defense Forces retook several strategic positions during the Second Intifada. In 2005, after the Second Intifada, Israel withdrew unilaterally from its settlements in the Gaza Strip, thereby expanding Palestinian Authority control to the entire strip while Israel continued to control the crossing points and the waters off the Gaza Strip's coast. In the Palestinian legislative elections on 25 January 2006, Hamas emerged victorious and nominated Ismail Haniyeh as the Authority's Prime Minister. However, the national unity Palestinian government collapsed, when a violent conflict between Hamas and Fatah erupted in the Gaza Strip.

After the Gaza Strip was taken over by Hamas on 14 June 2007, the Authority's Chairman Mahmoud Abbas dismissed the Hamas-led unity government and appointed Salam Fayyad as Prime Minister, dismissing Haniyeh. The move wasn't recognized by Hamas, thus resulting in two separate administrations – the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and a rival Hamas government in the Gaza Strip; the reconciliation process to unite the Palestinian governments achieved some progress over the years, but had failed to produce a re-unification. The PA received financial assistance from the United States. All direct aid was suspended on 7 April 2006, as a result of the Hamas victory in parliamentary elections. Shortly thereafter, aid payments resumed, but were channeled directly to the offices of Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank. Since 9 January 2009, when Mahmoud Abbas' term as president was supposed to have ended and elections were to have been called, Hamas supporters and many in the Gaza Strip have withdrawn recognition for his presidency and instead consider Aziz Dweik, the speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council, to be the acting president until new elections can be held.

In November 2012, the United Nations voted to recognize the State of Palestine as a non-member UN observer state. The Palestinian Authority was created by the Gaza–Jericho Agreement, pursuant to the 1993 Oslo Accords; the Gaza–Jericho Agreement was signed on 4 May 1994 and included an Israeli withdrawal from the Jericho area and from the Gaza Strip, detailed the creation of the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian Civil Police Force. The PA was envisioned as an interim organization to administer a limited form of Palestinian self-governance in the Areas A and B in the West Bank and Gaza Strip for a period of five years, during which final-status negotiations would take place; the Palestinian Central Council, itself acting on behalf of the Palestine National Council of the PLO, implemented this agreement in a meeting convened in Tunis from 10–11 October 1993, making the Palestinian Authority accountable to the PLO Executive Committee. The administrative responsibilities accorded to the PA were limited to civil matters and internal security and did not include external security or foreign affairs.

Palestinians in the diaspora and inside Israel were not eligible to vote in elections for the offices of the Palestinian Authority. The PA was separate from the Palestine Liberation Organization, which continues to enjoy international recognition as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, representing them at the United Nations under the name "Palestine". General elections were held for its first legislative body, the Palestinian Legislative Council, on 20 January 1996; the expiration of the body's term was 4 May 1999, but elections were not held because of the "prevailing coercive situation". On 7 July 2004, the Quartet of Middle East mediators informed Ahmed Qurei, Prime Minister of the PA from 2003 to 2006, that they were "sick and tired" of the Palestinians failure to carry out promised reforms: "If security reforms are not done, there will be no international support and no funding from the international community"On 18 July 2004, United States President George W. Bush stated that the establishment of a Palestinian state by the end of 2005 was unlikely due to instability and violence in the Palestinian Authority.

Following Arafat's death on 11 November 2004, Rawhi Fattouh, leader of the Palestinian Legislative Council became Acting President of the Palestinian Authority as provided for in Article 5

Hyperolius nitidulus

Hyperolius nitidulus is a species of frog from the family Hyperoliidae. It is found on the West African savannas between Guinea and Mali in the west and Nigeria and Cameroon in the east. Common name plain reed. Hyperolius nitidulus are medium-sized reed frogs with a rather blunt snout. Males vary is size between 23–29 mm and on average weight about one gram. Females are larger and heavier than males, their body size can vary between 24–32 mm with an average weight of about two grams before laying eggs; this species has a large choana, not hidden beneath edge of mandible like in most Hyperolius species. They have a large tongue, broad and shaped like a heart, their dorsal view is roundish and sometimes a bit pointy. From a lateral view their body is flattened but some have a round truncate; the position of the naris is close to snout tip than to the eye. Skin is laterally smooth and with small warts. Body is half cylindrical with thin limbs, they have extra skin folds. Fingers and toes have circummarginal discs.

Males have a median subgular vocal sac, used for calling. During their juvenile stage their color is beige with a darker flanked stripe at the side from snout to vent; as an adult they exhibit metachrosis, this color change is based on many factors such temperature, humidity. During the night the uniformly color is beige and during the day the color can vary between yellow and orange with spots. During the dry season the juveniles become white as they aestivate the skin in the inside of their limbs becomes red due to the underlying capillary network. Adults are insectivores consuming taxa such as Drosophila, Phormia and Calliphora. Breeding occurs during wet season, May–October. During mating season males will migrate to temporary ponds and at times stay there and wander between ponds. Males on average stay for several days or weeks, while females only visit the ponds only for oviposition. While in the ponds males begin calling between dusk and midnight. Males have two distinct calls. Mating call is short metallic that can last from 0.16–0.24 seconds with an average frequency of 2.04–3.43 Kilohertz.

Territorial call sounds like a “croak”. On average each calls can last from 0.28–0.36 seconds with a frequency of 0.98–2.0 Kilohertz. Males tend to become aggressive; the female deposits her eggs in the water, attaching the clutch underwater where there is vegetation at the bottom of the pond. Females have the ability to lay 94–800 eggs per clutch. Females are able to produce several clutches during one mating season. Nonetheless, clutch size will decrease. There is no parental care. Eggs are white with a dark brown animal pole. Two to fives days after the egg were laid the embryos start to hatch; the tadpole development may take longer. Free-living larvae stay in the vegetation areas at the edge of the feed of algae. During this period the larvae are at high risk of many predators such as dragonfly and beetle larvae and most fish; the tadpole stage lasts six to eight weeks. For the frog to mature it requires about two months. Hyperolius nitidulus inhabit margins of swamps and lakes in savanna and bushland habitats.

It is a adaptable species that occurs in many human-modified areas, such as cultivated land and gardens. Hyperolius nitidulus live in an environment with a wet season that can be cold and humid, an hot and dry season. During the hot and dry season the frog is dependent on water therefore it has special adaptations to survive the extreme climate. Hyperolius nitidulus is known for its unique aestivation behavior during the dry season. During dry season Hyperolius nitidulus do not seek shelter or hide, they expose themselves to the sun by sitting on dry plants to reduce rapid water loss and can remain in this sitting position for months without food or water; the juveniles only move. They sit with their legs held to the body and feet hidden under their skin folds. During this period, since there is no food or water intake, the juvenile frog does not urinate or defecate; the body stores all nitrogenous waste as urea in body purines. As the hot weather increases the dorsal skin of the frog becomes white due to the presence iridophores that can reflect light like a mirror since they are filled with purines crystals.

Juveniles are the only ones that survive a dry season because most adults cannot adapt to the changes in living condition and die. Juveniles born in the first 2/3 of the wet season have enough time to mature and reproduce in the same season; these juveniles must mature and use all their energy for growth and reproduction, which prevents them from preparing for the dry season that lies ahead. Juveniles that are born in the last third of the wet season take their time maturing and prepare themselves for the dry season; these last juveniles do not reproduce, they allocate all their resources to energy storage to be able to survive the dry season and hope to reproduce the following wet season

Microcotyle nemadactylus

Microcotyle nemadactylus is a species of monogenean, parasitic on the gills of a marine fish. It belongs to the family Microcotylidae. Microcotyle nemadactylus was first redescribed by Dillon & Hargis. Caballero y Caballero and Bravo-Hollis erected the genus Paramicrocotyle to describe Paramicrocotyle tampicensis and Paramicrocotyle atriobursata off Mexico. However, Microcotyle nemadactylus was returned to the genus Microcotyle and Paramicrocotyle is considered a junior subjective synonym of Microcotyle. Microcotyle nemadactylus has the general morphology of all species of Microcotyle, with a flat elongated fusiform body comprising an anterior part which contains most organs and a posterior part called the haptor; the haptor is symmetrical and weakly delineated from body proper, bears 94–102 clamps similar in shape and dissimilar in size, arranged as two rows, one on each side. The clamps of the haptor attach the animal to the gill of the fish. There are two small buccal suckers located at the anterior extremity, with a rim armed with small, toothlike papillae.

The digestive organs include an anterior, terminal mouth, a short esophagus, extending to the posterior margin of the genital atrium, a muscular pharynx, a posterior intestine with two lateral blind-ending branches. Each adult contains male and female reproductive organs; the reproductive organs include an anterior genital atrium consisting of an outer muscular rim of radiating fibers and an inner portion armed with numerous spines, with spines, a dorsal vagina, a single tubular folded ovary, 16–25 follicular testes which are posterior to the ovary. The eggs are fusiform, with filaments at both end. Microcotyle nemadactylus resembles Microcotyle bassensis from the gills of Platycephalus bassensis off Australia, they differ in measurements and arrangement of atrial spines. The specific name of this species, relates to the generic name of the type host fish, Nemadactylus macropterus; the tarakihi Nemadactylus macropterus is the type-host of Microcotyle nemadactylus. The species has been first described from fish caught off New Zealand.

It has been recorded from the type-host from Lakes Entrance, eastern Victoria and from the Peruvian morwong Cheilodactylus variegatus

Metrosideros diffusa

Metrosideros diffusa, the white rātā, climbing rātā or in Māori akakura, is a forest liane or vine endemic to New Zealand. It is one of a number of New Zealand Metrosideros species which live out their lives as vines, unlike the northern rata, which begins as a hemi-epiphyte and grows into a huge tree, it is one of three white flowering rātā vines. White rātā is the most common climbing rātā in the wild, found in lowland forests throughout the North and Stewart islands. Metrosideros diffusa has small shiny leaves up to 2 cm or more; the leaves are rounded at the tip. Flowering is from mid-spring with white or pale pink flowers. Metrosideros diffusa is not grown in cultivation, but is available from specialist native plant nurseries within New Zealand. In addition there is one known cultivar, Metrosideros diffusa'Crystal Showers' sold by Blue Mountain Nurseries in Tapanui; this is a slow growing groundcover with white flowers but green variegated foliage. Carmine/crimson rātā Colenso's rātā Large white rātā Scarlet rātā Small white rātā

Kokkino Chorio

Kokkino Chorio is a village situated in the Chania regional unit of Crete, Greece. It was the filming location of the 1964 film Zorba the Greek starring Anthony Quinn, Alan Bates, Irene Papas and many locals; the village plays host to a tunnel complex, used in World War II by the Nazis as an artillery spotting position. The area has been bought by a local property developer who has subsequently built a large number of houses on the site, obliterating in the process an old gun emplacement. In 2006 a memorial to those killed during world war two was constructed at the entrance to the tunnels. Access is possible. Kokkino Chorio has three churches: St. George's, located at the entrance of the cave and used on St. George's Day; the main church, used weekly and at other times during Lent/Easter and Advent/Christmas is St. Haralambos and is located in the village square. Kokkino Chorio is located near Plaka, Gavlahori and Kambia. A Mini Market has opened in Kokkino Chorio selling a range of goods, from food to household appliances.

There is a Glass blowing factory in the village with an embryo taverna attached. Above Kokkino Horio one can see Calapodha; the coastline northwest of the village is an interesting place for a stroll due to the ground formation and the caves, such as the cave of Petsi. Another cave called Katalimata, located at the centre of the village, is an interesting site

Tamajón

Tamajón is a municipality located in the province of Guadalajara, Castile-La Mancha, Spain. According to the 2006 census, the municipality has a population of 205 inhabitants and has a surface area of 116.28 km². The inhabitants are called Agallonero-a, it comprises the town of Tamajón and the districts of Almiruete and Muriel. A 16th-century church, dedicated to the Asunción de Nuestra Señora, overlooks the entrance to the town. Two kilometres to the north is the Hermitage of the local Patron saint. Built in the 16th century, it was extended in the 18th century; the "Enchanted City of Tamajón" is close by, an area where the local limestone has been eroded and forms fanciful shapes and caves