Asma Jahangir, the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, wrapped up a week-long visit with a statement in which she noted that the country only emerged from 27 years of armed conflict in 2002, and that many people can practise their religion freely due to “a measure of tolerance within Angolan society.”But she pointed out that a law on “freedom of religion, consciousness and worship discriminates against religious minorities… It contains stringent requirements for registration including membership of 100,000 persons who are domiciled in Angola.”Ms. Jahangir said several Christian groups and the Muslim community have yet to be recognized, even though they have submitted registration applications. “Other religious minorities have no chance of recognition,” she noted.She urged the Government to reform the law, and said she had been encouraged by its openness to review the code’s provisions. The Rapporteur, who serves in a personal and unpaid capacity, acknowledged that the “Government’s invitation to me represents a commitment to transparency in the area I cover, and also allows outside scrutiny of its human rights record.”In the north-western province of Cabinda, security forces continue to violate human rights, she observed. “These violations and the intra-religious conflict within the Catholic Church are inter-related and represent challenges to the full enjoyment by all of the right to freedom of religion or belief.”Four men were arrested on 12 July for peacefully protesting against the newly-appointed bishop at a mass, and three of them were sentenced to suspended sentences “under a draconian Colonial Decree dating from 1911.”In the course of her visit, Ms. Jahangir received several reports of violence, intimidation, harassment and arrests by State agents of those seen to be associated with the crisis in the Catholic Church, she said.Angola is also affected by a “dominant global trend” linking Muslims to international terrorism, the Rapporteur said, with high-ranking Government officials reported to have stigmatized Islam’s followers in the media.In addition, she expressed concern about the negative impact of witchcraft, which is widespread and has a long history in Angola, with reports that children are sometimes accused by their families of being witches.Ms. Jahangir’s final report will be presented to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva next March. 28 November 2007Although the freedom of religion is enshrined in the Angolan constitution, an independent United Nations human rights expert today voiced concern that the right to practise religion or belief is infringed in the Southern African nation.
___Facing Trump’s tariffs, some companies move, change or waitWASHINGTON (AP) — Some are moving factories out of China. Others are strategically redesigning products. Some are seeking trade loopholes or even mislabeling where their goods originate — all with the goal of evading President Donald Trump’s tariffs on Chinese imports. But most of the companies that stand to be hurt by Trump’s tariffs are hunkering down and waiting — waiting because they don’t know when, whether or how his trade war with China will end or which countries the president might target next.___Netflix subscriber drop hints at streaming-service fatigueNEW YORK (AP) — How much is too much for streaming video? Netflix price increases during the second quarter seem to have spooked subscribers, and raise the question of how much people are willing to pay for the bevy of streaming services headed for launch this year and next.___House approves $15 minimum wage, Senate prospects are dimWASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats approved legislation Thursday to raise the federal minimum wage for the first time in a decade — to $15 an hour. But the bill has almost no chance in the Republican-controlled Senate. The increase, from what’s now $7.25 an hour, would be phased in over six years. It also raises the tipped wage to the same level. A minimum wage hike has been a top Democratic campaign promise, intended to address income inequality that’s driving the 2020 political debate.___Facebook’s Libra gets stark warning from G-7 finance chiefsCHANTILLY, France (AP) — Finance chiefs from the Group of Seven rich democracies have issued a stark warning that cryptocurrencies like Facebook’s Libra should not be allowed before “serious regulatory and systemic concerns” are put in check. France, which chaired the G-7 finance meeting, said Thursday that it is worried that encrypted digital currency could spiral out of control.___Trump: Administration to review Pentagon computer contractWASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump says the administration will “take a very long look” at a massive multibillion-dollar contract the Pentagon is about to award for a cloud computing system. Amazon Web Services Inc., a division of Amazon, and Microsoft Corp. are finalists for the contract estimated to be worth as much as $10 billion over a decade. Trump says he’s been hearing “tremendous complaints” from other companies that the contract was not competitively bid.___About 10,000 au pairs to get paid in class-action settlementDENVER (AP) — About 10,000 live-in childcare workers from around the world will be paid an average of $3,500 each under a class-action settlement that alleged exploitation of the mostly young women who perform the jobs. U.S. District Judge Christine Arguello gave final approval to the $65.5 million deal for au pairs on Thursday in Denver.___Union Pacific delivers 4% better 2Q profit on lower expensesOMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Union Pacific Corp. delivered 4% more profit in the second quarter even though it hauled less freight because it cut its expenses by 7%. Operational improvements at the railroad helped it beat Wall Street expectations. The Omaha, Nebraska-based company said Thursday it earned $1.57 billion, or $2.22 per share, in the quarter. That’s up from $1.51 billion, or $1.98 per share, a year ago.___Automaker BMW names production chief Zipse as new CEOFRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — BMW has named its top production manager, Oliver Zipse, as its next CEO to lead the luxury automaker through a shift to new ways of doing business such as electric vehicles and offering cars on a per-use basis. The Munich-based company said in a news release that Zipse, 55, would succeed Harald Krueger, who said July 5 he would not seek to renew his contract when it expires next May.___South Korean political parties back Moon in Japan trade rowSEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korean liberal and conservative parties have vowed to co-operate to help the Seoul government prevail in an escalating trade row with Japan. After a meeting between the parties’ leaders and South Korean President Moon Jae-in, they announced plans to create a “pan-national” emergency body to respond to Japanese trade curbs on certain technology exports to South Korea. They urged Japan to withdraw the new export controls.___US stock indexes shake off an early loss and close higherNEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks reversed course from an early slump and closed higher Thursday to break a two-day losing streak after technology and bank stocks rallied. IBM rose after reporting solid results and helped lift the technology sector. Banks including BB&T and SunTrust led financial stocks higher. Medical equipment makers including Danaher helped health care stocks reverse course after an early loss. A plunge in Netflix sank communications companies.___The S&P 500 index rose 10.69 points, or 0.4%, to 2,995.11. The Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 3.12 points to 27,222.97. The Nasdaq composite rose 22.04 points, or 0.3%, to 8,207.24. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks rose 4.85 points, or 0.3%, to 1,555.62.The Associated Press