28 January 2012

Arab League: Syria Observer Mission Halted 28JAN12 & SYRIA LIVE BLOG from AL JAZEERA 27-28JAN12

THIS last week in Syria has been one of the bloodiest since the peaceful demonstrations started in 2011, the nation is headed in the same direction as Libya, and assad, sadly, seems intent in killing off as many of his citizens before he is finally removed from power. The Arab League must keep it's observers in the country and must keep documenting the atrocities by the government. The U.N. Security Council has a moral responsibility to pass the proposed resolution from the Arab League to bring about an end to the violence. Russia and China may veto the resolution, but do so at their own risk as there will be consequences for their actions in the Arab world. This from HuffPost and from Al Jazeera (click the links in the blog for more information on those post).......

BEIRUT — The Arab League halted its observer mission to Syria on Saturday, sharply criticizing the regime of President Bashar Assad for escalating violence in recent days that has killed nearly 100 people across the country.
The rising bloodshed has added urgency to new attempts by Arab and Western countries to find a resolution to the 10 months of violence that according to the United Nations has killed at least 5,400 people as Assad seeks to crush persistent protests demanding an end to his rule.
But the initiatives continue to face two major obstacles: Damascus' rejection of an Arab peace plan which it says impinges on its sovereignty, and Russia's willingness to use its U.N. Security Council veto to protect Syria from sanctions.
Syrian government forces clashed with anti-regime army defectors across the country on Saturday. At least 20 were reported killed in the clashes and other violence. The new deaths come after two days of bloody turmoil killed at least 74 people, including small children.
The clashes have been the most intense near the tightly-controlled capital since the uprising began in March.
Syrian Interior Minister Mohammed Shaar was quoted by state-media as telling families of security members killed during the crackdown that the government "will continue their struggle to clean Syria's soil of the outlaws."
The month-old Arab observer mission in Syria has come under widespread criticism for failing to bring a halt to the regime's crackdown. Gulf states led by Saudi Arabia pulled out of the mission Tuesday, asking the U.N. Security Council to intervene.
League Secretary-General Nabil Elaraby said in a statement that after discussions with Arab foreign ministers, the organization decided to halt the observers' work immediately because of the increasing violence, until the League's council can meet to decide the mission's fate.
He blamed Damascus for the spike in bloodshed, saying the regime has "resorted to escalating the military option in complete violation of (its) commitments" to end the crackdown, Elaraby said. He said the victims of the violence have been "innocent citizens," in an implicit rejection of Syria's claims that it is fighting "terrorists."
Elaraby's deputy, Ahmed Ben Heli, told reporters that the around 100 observers will remain in Damascus while their mission is "reevaluated."
Ben Heli suggested the observers could resume their work later. Asked if the mission would be withdrawn, he said the halt was "forced by events" and aimed to ensure the observers' safety, but he spoke of a possible "new map" of places where the teams would visit, and said the mission would wait to see what new personnel and logistical help the League would give it.
Elaraby and the prime minister of Qatar were set to leave for New York on Sunday to seek U.N. support for the latest Arab plan to end Syria's crisis. The plan calls for a two-month transition to a unity government, with Assad giving his vice president full powers to work with the proposed government.
Syria has rejected the proposal, saying it violates its sovereignty. Elaraby had previously been due to travel Saturday, but his trip was pushed back to Sunday with no explanation.
The U.N. Security Council began closed-door negotiations Friday on a new Arab-European draft resolution aimed at resolving the crisis, but Russia's envoy said he could not back the current language as it stands.
Any resolution faces strong opposition from China and Russia, and both nations have veto power. Russia's U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin told reporters that the text introduced by new Arab Security Council member Morocco has "red lines" for Moscow, but he's willing to "engage" with the resolution's sponsors.
Churkin said those lines include any indication of sanctions, including an arms embargo. "We need to concentrate on establishing political dialogue," he said.
Arab League chief Elaraby has been holding talks with Russia's foreign minister over the crisis ahead of the visit to the U.N., Ben Heli said.
In the bloodiest incident reported on Saturday, Syria's state-run news agency SANA said "terrorists" ambushed a bus carrying army officers near the tense Damascus suburb of Douma, killing seven of them.
Although Damascus has been relatively quiet since the uprising began, its suburbs have witnessed intense anti-regime protests and army defectors have become more visible and active in the past few months.
Syrian opposition groups had no immediate reports on the ambush in Douma, but the Local Coordination Councils activist network said government troops were attacking several other Damascus suburbs – Kfar Batna, Saqba, Jisreen and Arbeen – using tanks and armored personnel carriers. It added that defectors were fighting advancing troops.
In the eastern oil-rich province of Deir el-Zour, an oil pipeline took a direct hit and caught fire as government troops shelled a town, activists said.
The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the LCC said the early morning shelling of the town of Qoriah killed at least one person and set the pipeline on fire.
Syria's state-run media blamed anti-government "terrorists" for the attack, saying the fire was extinguished four hours later. It said the pipeline carried crude oil from al-Omar field to a station in the area.
SANA also reported that Syrian troops prevented gunmen from crossing from neighboring Turkey into the northwestern province of Idlib. SANA said a Syrian soldier was wounded while many of the infiltrators were either killed or wounded, adding that the rest returned to Turkey.
The Free Syrian Army force of anti-regime military defectors is based in Turkey, and its fighters frequently try to cross into Syria through the mountainous border area in the northwest.
The LCC and the Observatory also reported intense fighting between troops and defectors in the town of Rastan near the restive central city of Homs.
The observatory said at least 34 people, including 15 civilians, three defectors and 16 troops were killed across the country in Saturday's violence while the LCC said 20 died, half of them in the central province of Homs, which has been one of the areas hardest hit by government crackdowns.
Associated Press writers Aya Batrawy in Cairo, and Albert Aji in Damascus, Syria, contributed to this report.
Bassem Mroue can be reached on twitter at
1  of  8
Syrian army defectors patrol a street in Homs province, central Syria, on Wednesday Jan. 25, 2012. Government forces clashed with army defectors and stormed rebellious districts in central Syria on Wednesday, firing mortars and deploying snipers in violence that killed at least seven people, including a mother and her 5-year-old child, activists said. (AP)

Syria Live Blog 27-28JAN12

People continue to take to the streets across Syria, while the uprising is becoming increasingly militarised. The UN says more than 5,400 people have been killed since the uprising began in March. Meanwhile, the government blames "armed gangs" for the unrest and says more than 2,000 members of the security forces have been killed.
We bring you the latest news from various sources.
Al Jazeera is not responsible for content derived from external sites.
Syria said the Arab League's suspension of its monitoring mission in the country was an attempt to influence the United Nations Security Council and increase pressure for foreign intervention, according to state television.
"This will have a negative impact and put pressure on [Security Council] deliberations with the aim of calling for foreign intervention and encouraging armed groups to increase violence," a news flash on Syria Television said.
The Arab League called on President Bashar al-Assad to step down last week and is meeting with the Security Council in the coming days to discuss an Arab peace plan.
"Syria is still committed to the success of the Arab monitoring mission and to protecting the mission observers," the news flash said.
The Arab League said it had suspended its monitoring mission in Syria because of "the critical deterioration of the situation" as fighting continues.

Syria said it regretted and was surprised by the decision to halt its mission monitoring a peace plan in the country.

"Syria regrets and is surprised at the Arab decision to stop the work of its monitoring mission after it asked for a one-month extension of its work," Syrian state television reported in an urgent news flash. 

Al Jazeera's Zeina Khodr has this report from Beirut in neighbouring Lebanon:

Read our news story for more detail and context: Arab League suspends Syria mission 

For our full Syria coverage click here
It has been a day of fast moving developments in Syria. Here’s a quick update:

• The Arab League has confirmed it is suspending its monitoring mission in the country.

• The pan-Arab bloc also says it is holding talks with Russia - one of the main opponents of the Arab League peace plan - ahead of a United Nations meeting on Monday.

• The main Syrian opposition group says it will go to the UN to appeal for protection from President Bashar al-Assad's forces.

• Opposition activists say a further 27 people have been killed in Syria on Saturday.

• There have been fierce clashes on the outskirts of the capital Damascus, and as this picture reportedly shows, heavy shelling in the Baba Amr neighbourhood in Homs:

File 59011

Read our news story for more detail and context:
Arab League suspends Syria mission 

For our full Syria coverage click here.
The Arab League's monitoring mission to Syria has been frozen given the escalation of violence in the country, the Arab League said in a statement.
"It has been decided to immediately stop the work of the Arab League's mission to Syria pending presention of the issue to the league's council," the Secretary-General of the Arab League said in a statement. 
The mission would remain in Syria, a source at the league had earlier told the Reuters news agency, but would temporarily freeze its work. 

The head of the monitoring mission, Ambassador Adnan al-Khodeir, had earlier said that the General Secretariat of the league would take all the necessary procedures to protect the safety of its monitors in Syria.

Read our news story for more detail and context: Arab League suspends Syria mission
The Arab League is suspending its observer mission in Syria because of an upsurge in violence, according to an official.

They have been monitoring the crackdown on dissent in the country.

More soon... 

Louay Safi, a member of the Syrian National Council, the main opposition group, told Al Jazeera in Doha that the Free Syrian Army "is part of the solution".
The council has said it is ready to provide the opposition army with funding and weapons.
Safi described the support in question as "defensive equipments".
"We like them to to keep security forces away from protesters and civilians".
The clip below includes the interview as well as comments from Al Jazeera's Zeina Khodr in Beirut.

Iraqi Kurdish leader Massoud Barzani has expressed support for minority Kurds in Syria.
Barzani, the president of Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region, was speaking at a two-day conference of Syrian Kurds in the Iraqi Kurdish capital of Erbil.
"We do not want to interfere in the affairs of Kurds in Syria, but we will help and support your decisions," he said.
"But on the condition that you remain united during this sensitive period, and that you avoid internal conflicts.
"The situation is important to us because it is a neighbouring country, we have a long border with it, and more than two million Kurds live there. It is important to know their future."
More than 200 Syrian Kurds living in 25 countries took part in the conference, which will conclude on Sunday in Erbil.
Syria's Kurdish community is represented by a dozen squabbling political parties, all of them banned by authorities in Damascus. [AFP]
The Local Coordination Committees report violent clashes between the Free Syrian Army and government forces in Rastan, in Homs province.
The activists say several armoured vehicles and army checkpoints of the regular army.
Sources tell Al Jazeera there are fierce clashes between the Free Syrian Army and security forces in the Damascus suburb of Kfar Batna.
The Gulf Arab states and Turkey are due to meet in Istanbul on Saturday for talks expected to be dominated by the quest for a tough UN Security Council resolution. [AFP]
This video purports to show a protest in the Aleppo neighbourhood of Marjeh this morning. YouTube operates on American time, which probably explains the discrepancy  between the upload date - January 27 - and the date given in the description.
The description says the protesters have gathered outside Maqar Al-Anbiaa mosque. The Syrian Revolution General Commission said nine people were killed on Friday when a demonstration taking off from the same location was attacked with teargas and gunfire.

The New York Times has a report from the Damascus suburb of Saqba, where armed opposition fighters appear to be in control:
At a funeral for one of the more than 5,400 victims of Syria’s unfolding civil war, fighters from the opposition Free Syrian Army kept a menacing watch, their faces covered with scarves and balaclavas as they stood at the edge of a square, carrying assault rifles and grenade launchers. Thousands of demonstrators marched behind the coffin beneath the green, white and black banner of the opposition — not the Syrian government’s flag. Suspected state security agents were grabbed by the crowd."
Assad supporters rallied in front of the central bank in Damascus on Friday, holding pictures of the president and banners denouncing the Arab League.
One sign read: "Walid Muallem is a mountain that winds can't shake, his Saudi counterpart Prince Saud al-Faisal can be shaken without winds and needs a hundred mountains to hold him," referring to the foreign minister's address earlier this week in which he accused Arab nations of trying to internationalise the Syria crisis but said Syria would stay unshaken. [AFP]

Al Jazeera's Zeina Khodr has written a blog on how the opposition is increasingly taking up arms against the state:
Omar, who is originally from Homs but who is living in exile in Istanbul told me: 'This is our right ... It is our right to take up arms and we are not going to shy away from this any longer. We are being killed. We waited for any action from the Arab League and the United Nations and none was forthcoming. All they have been doing is stalling and that has given the regime time to crush the revolution,' he said.
"Omar explained that military councils are now being set up in governorates across Syria. It is part of efforts to organise a command structure. Councils that will be made up of civilians as well as army defectors. 'Yes, civilians who want to hold weapons are joining our struggle,' he said.

Russia's UN envoy says parts of the Arab-European draft resolution on Syria is unacceptable but Russia is ready to "engage" on it [Reuters]
For more on the incident at the Syrian embassy in Cairo, the AFP news agency had this report:
Scores of opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime stormed the Syrian embassy in Cairo on Friday before being dragged away by security forces, an AFP reporter said.

At least 200 protesters forced their way into the building in the Garden City neighbourhood in Cairo, breaking doors and windows, before Egyptian security officials arrived and took them out. No arrests were made.

The embassy was empty because Friday is a weekend day in Egypt.

Syrian Ambassador Yusef Ahmed headed to the embassy after the incident and said he would formally complain to the authorities.
The Syrian embassy is being targeted. We will be sending a formal letter calling for the embassy to be protected. The protection today was very weak," Ahmed told AFP.
The protesters "went into the building. They reached the floor where the ambassador's office is located. Unfortunately they were not resisted," he said as he walked over broken glass and into the building.

"This is a very serious development," he said.
Al Jazeera's Rawya Rageh tweets from Cairo where activists have tried to breach the Syrian embassy:

Fresh violence has erupted in the besieged Syrian city of Homs, a day after armed forces loyal to President Bashar Assad barraged residential buildings with mortars and machine-gun fire and killed at least 30 people, activists have said.
Heavy gunfire erupted for a second day on Friday in the city, which has seen some of the heaviest violence of the 10-month-old uprising against Assad's rule. Activists said at least 33 people have been killed across the country since Thursday.
To read more, click HERE.
A car bomb exploded on Friday at a checkpoint outside the northern Syrian city of Idlib, the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said, citing witnesses on the ground.
The number of casualties was not immediately clear.
Syrian security forces loyal to President Bashar Assad have barraged residential buildings with mortars and machine-gun fire, killing at least 30 people, including a family of women and children in the besieged Syrian city of Homs, activists said on Friday.
The violence erupted on Thursday, but important details were only emerging a day later. Video posted online by activists showed the bodies of five small children, five women and a man, all bloodied and piled on beds in what appeared to be an apartment after a building was hit in the Karm el-Zaytoun neighborhood of the city.
A narrator said an entire family had been "slaughtered" by the government.
The LCC's have increased their death toll for today to 14. Five more deaths are being reported from Homs, and one from Hama.
Firing and violence has been reported in Deir Ezzor, Bokamal in the suburbs of Damascus, in Douma and Kanaker. A heavy security presence, including the presence of snipers, is being reported in Mouadamia and Baniyas.
The Local Co-ordination Committees, a loose umbrella organisation of opposition activists, has released new figures on the violence across Syria today.
The group claims that eight people have been killed so far today: five in Homs, two in Idlib and one in the Qedsaya suburb of Damascus.
In Latakia, the group says that "a number of soliders" have defected near the youth camps in southern Raml, resulting in "an exchange of gunfire with the regime's army before the soldiers were able to withdraw safely".
In the Domair suburb of Damascus, the group says five people, including a retired colonel in the army, were arrested today.
In Assal al-Ward,  a column of tanks was seen advancing towards the Rankous suburb of Damasus, the group said.
The group's update from Douma, where violence has been ongoing, is that communications continue to be cut off, and that the water supply has now also been cut.
The Syrian government has restricted reporting in the country, and does not allow Al Jazeera to report freely from within its borders. As such, we cannot immediately verify these figures.
Members of the Free Syrian Army claim that they have captured members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard operating in Syria.
The man is speaking in Farsi. Here's a translation:
I am Sajjad Hyder Ali from the Islamic Republic of Iran. I am from a team of five specialists. On the date of 24-7-1390, I and my team, under the order of Syrian forces suppressed and fired on ordinary people. We were returning from our place of operation to where we were staying we killed a lot of people in the city of Homs including women and children.
We received orders directly from Syria's security intelligence forces in Homs.
We have a request of Mr. Khameini, leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, to issue the order of the return of all forces that are here to suppress Syrians.
He is quoting the date by the Iranian calendar, which corresponds to January 14.
Update: Questions have been raised over the veracity of the claim that the men are soldiers.
The names of the hostages match the names of five Iranian engineers abducted in December. The names of the engineers were listed by Iranian media. At least one of the Iranians in the FSA video bears a striking resemblance to a kidnapped engineer.
"There has been a terrifying massacre," Rami Abdul-Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-based opposition rights group, has told the AP regarding violence in Homs.
Reports indicate that more than 30 people, including young children, have been killed in a barrage of mortar fire and attacks by armed forces loyal to President Assad.
Both the SOHR and the Local Co-ordination Committees (a loose network of opposition activists) say that more than 35 people were killed in the violence.
Tags homs
Ban Ki-moon, the secretary-general of the United Nations, has urged the UN Security Council to speak in unison on Syria.
"I hope that the Security Council will be able to act," said Ban, referring to a meeting scheduled for 20:00 GMT, when the UNSC will discuss the crisis in Syria.
"We have to seize this moment, we have to help these people. They have been oppressed for so long. Now they have come out, women and young people, they are yearning for these aspirations. That's why I have been urging leaders to listen very
sincerely and carefully to their aspirations," he said.
"I'm going to continue to do that. I'm encouraging that when it comes to the Syrian situation."
Aa senior Russian diplomat has said that the draft resolution on the Syrian crisis that will be discussed by the UN Security Council today is unacceptable because it does not take Moscow's position into account, the Itar-Tass news agency reports.
The resolution, which backs the Arab League's proposals on Syria, contains "no fundamental consideration for our position" and is missing "key aspects that are fundamental to us", Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov was quoted as saying by the news agency.
Activists say that dozens of people have been killed in the last few days in Homs, the AP news agency reports.
Two activist groups have told the AP that the death toll in Homes on Thursday was at least 35, but reports remain unconfirmed.
Witnesses have told AP that they are still gathering information on what exactly happened during Thursday's violence. Many of the reported victims were inside a building in the Karm al-Zaytoun neighbourhood.
Tags homs
The official Iranian IRNA news agency reports that gunmen in Syria have abducted 11 Iranian pilgrims who were travelling by road from Turkey to Damascus.
The report says that 49 Iranians were in a bus which was stopped after leaving the town of Halab on Thursday. Gunmen abducted 11 of them, leaving the rest, who included women, elderly men and three children.
IRNA reports that thieves later attacked the group, stealing their money and valuables.
Pilgrims from Iran, a staunch of ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, routinely visit Syria to pay homage at Shia holy sites.
Saudi Arabia may recognise the opposition Syrian National Council as the "official representative" of the Syrian people, a senior member of the SNC says.
"Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal told an SNC delegation he met in Cairo last week the kingdom will recognise the Council as the official representative of the Syrian people," SNC executive council member Ahmad Ramadan has told Kuwait's Al-Rai newspaper.
He did not say when Riyadh will make the move or whether it will be joined by its five partners in the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) which this week announced that it was following Saudi Arabia's lead in pulling out its representatives from a widely criticised Arab League observer mission to Syria.
Ramadan, who was at that meeting, quoted Prince Saud as saying that Arab governments are holding the Syrian government squarely to blame for the observer mission's perceived failure.

Super Bowl Friday, TOUCHDOWN KIVA!!!!! 27JAN12

HERE are my latest loans through Kiva, and I made them as part of the NY Giants lending team! Check out Kiva and consider making a loan as part of either the NE Patriots or the NY Giants lending teams. I think the Giants will have the most loans, and will win the Super Bowl!!!!

Kiva -- Loans that Change Lives
Touchdown, Kiva!
football field
The Super Bowl is coming, capping off one of the most exciting American football seasons in years. More about that in a minute. Much like this football season, Kiva's 2011 was a year of milestones passed, records broken, and lessons learned.

Success on the Field

In 2011, we introduced social performance badges; twenty six new field partners, including non-traditional partners; Kiva City; and a pilot person to person lending program called Kiva Zip. All of these touchdowns (yes, there will be gratuitous football references throughout this message) are really points scored for our borrowers as we help the working poor around the world access the resources they need to improve their own lives.
The Kiva Team
The Kiva office staff, volunteers, and interns.
And of course, none of this would have happened without some amazing “assists” and ongoing cheering from our lenders. In November, we set a record of $8.8 million in loans funded, only to smash that record in December with $10.5 million in loans for thousands of borrowers around the world. In total, Kiva lenders funded $90 million in loans in 2011, up 26% from 2010.

It was a big year for Kiva staff and volunteers as well. Kiva staff visited over 53 countries, Kiva volunteer translators & editors performed the work of 53 full time employees, 81 Kiva Fellows spent 41,080 hours with our Field Partners, and 87 interns worked on nearly every project across every department at Kiva.

We're excited to be kicking off a New Year, with a goal to do even more in 2012. Check out our full year in review on the blog to learn more.

Are you ready for some football?

Now, to the Super Bowl! If you're not an American football fan, our non-football-loving Kivans have put together some super fascinating data about how football and Kiva surprisingly relate to one other. For the rest of you, we've got a fun proposition.

You might think that the Super Bowl is on February 5, but you're only partially correct. Starting today (January 27) at 12:01am Pacific, the Kiva Super Bowl is officially on.

The New England Patriots Lending Team is taking on the New York Giants Lending Team. The winning team is the team that lends the most money between January 27 at 12:01am and the time the last whistle is blown during the Super Bowl on February 5th. The winning team gets eternal glory, bragging rights, and the satisfaction that they've helped change a lot of lives.

So who's it going to be? Will the fans of The Patriots with Tom Brady in his record-tying fifth Super Bowl prevail? Or will the Giants faithful emulate Eli Manning to score another upset? Join a team today, invite your friends, and find out!
© 2005 - 2011 Kiva. All rights reserved. Kiva is a U.S. 501(c)3 nonprofit organization

Felipa  Agueda
A loan of $625 helps Felipa Agueda purchase ingredients to prepare her dishes.
44% raised, $350 to go

Repayment Term:
7 months (more info)
Repayment Schedule:
Jan 19, 2012
Jan 27, 2012
Currency Exchange Loss:
Default Protection
Not Covered
Your funds will be used to backfill this loan.
Repayments will go to you.

Doña Felipa Agueda is thirty-nine years old. She tells us that she considers herself a hard worker with dreams and the strength to make them a reality. Doña Pipa as she is best know by her group partners has been selling food for twenty five year. She sells delicious soups such as chicken and vegetable, shrimp, fresh fish and iguana. She tells us that she also sells baby clothing such as bottles, rattles, linens and hats. She is happily married to Señor Pedro, a hard working man with whom she has three children. Two of her children, Cristian and Iván, are happily married and she has a daughter, Guadalupe, who is still in school. Her daughter Guadalupe tells us that she is very proud of her mother for working to give her a better future.

Doña Felipa is requesting a loan to buy more ingredients to prepare her foods such as green chili, dried chilies, onion, garlic, tomatoes, chicken, beef, and vegetables to make salads. She is grateful to Fundación for putting their trust in her and helping her business to grow.
View original language description ↓

About the Country

Average Annual Income:
Mexico Pesos (MXN)
Exchange Rate:
13.1758 MXN = 1 USD
A loan of $10,000 helps Marlon to pay for bedding materials.
6% raised, $9,325 to go
Repayment Term:
32 months (more info)
Repayment Schedule:
Dec 30, 2011
Jan 27, 2012
Currency Exchange Loss:
Default Protection
Not Covered
Your funds will be used to backfill this loan.
Repayments will go to you.

Marlon is the proud owner of White Lotus Home, an organic bedding company that makes mattresses, pillows and other bedding products, out of organic fiber. The original business was established in 1981 and Marlon began working at the company in 2002, becoming the sole owner in 2006. Marlon sells his products on the internet, for wholesale and in his store operated out of Highland Park, New Jersey. Marlon works with over 70 distribution partners in over 20 states. In addition, he recently began selling his products in Canada. Customers rave on his website about the quality of product and amazing customer service. Marlon needs capital to purchase bedding materials, in order to keep up with the sales growth in 2011. A loan will help him to make this purchase, also enabling business growth and new customer acquisition.

Additional information about this loan

Important information

Kiva realizes that access to credit is a challenge for entrepreneurs everywhere. Kiva started out as a website focused on developing-world entrepreneurs. In June 2009, Kiva began experimenting with allowing entrepreneurs in the United States to raise money on its website. If this is something you support, please feel free to fund this loan. If you have questions, including how an entrepreneur in your neighborhood might get a loan, please visit our Help Center and click on "Loans in the United States."

About the Country

United States
Average Annual Income:
United States Dollars (USD)

President Obama: Be on the Right Side of History in Egypt and Bahrain! from Human Rights First 25JAN12

THE American government has to make it clear to the government in Bahrain and the transitional government in Egypt that they must honor and respect the human rights of their citizens. Inaction, and the approval of material exported to these countries to be used against their own citizens will result in long term harm to relations. Please click the link and send a message to Pres Obama to stand on the side of freedom, democracy and human rights in Egypt and Bahrain. From Human Rights First......

Join Us On Facebook Tell President Obama: Support Democracy and Human Rights in Egypt and Bahrain! Add us on Google Plus Donate to Support Human Rights First's Work
Tell President Obama: Support Democracy and Human Rights in Egypt and Bahrain!
President Obama asserted in last night's State of the Union address that the United States is a global leader.
He said that the United States "will stand for the rights and dignity of all human beings" and that it "will support policies that lead to strong and stable democracies...because tyranny is no match for liberty."
We agree. But as the people of Egypt build a new government and as human rights defenders and NGO's in Bahrain call for democratic reforms, tyranny continues.
Tell President Obama to support in word and deed democracy and human rights in Egypt and Bahrain!
We've seen a positive impact when the United States leads and it must do so more concretely in the Middle East. Last weekend, President Obama called Egyptian Field Marshal Tantawi to condemn SCAF's recent violence against peaceful protesters and raids in NGO's. He reminded him that an active civil society and respect for human rights are foundations for a stable democracy. We need more of this leadership.
In Bahrain, despite recommendations by its own Independent Commission of Inquiry, the monarchy continues to attack, harass, and detain human rights defenders who are calling for democratic reforms. Medics and peaceful protesters continue to receive unfair sentences in sham trials and international NGO's—including Human Rights First—are denied entry to document abuses. Yet the United States remains silent on these abuses.
To lead in the Middle East, President Obama must give unequivocal support for human rights and democracy in Egypt and Bahrain. He must openly criticize attacks against NGO's and human rights defenders in the region.
Tell President Obama to call for an effective transition to civilian rule in Egypt and an end to violence against peaceful protesters in Bahrain!
Neil Hicks
Human Rights First

Human Rights First is an independent American advocacy organization that challenges our country to live up to its ideals. We press American institutions to respect human rights and the rule of law. When they don't, we step in to demand accountability and justice. Around the world, we work in places where we can harness American influence to secure core freedoms.
Human Rights First,
333 Seventh Avenue, 13th Floor, New York, NY 10001-5004
Join us on Facebook, Follow us on Twitter