World News

UNITED NATIONS: UN Secretary General António Guterres urged governments on Thursday to redouble their efforts for ending violence against women by 2030 as the world began 16 days of activism to highlight the issue.

Violence against women is not inevitable, the UN chief said in a message.Change is possible, and now is the time to redouble our efforts so that together, we can eliminate violence against women and girls by 2030.

For thirty years, the United Nations observes the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and this year it also kick-started 15 days of activism to highlight the issue across the globe.

In Washington, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken described gender-based violence as the ‘shadow pandemic’ and emphasised the need to combat it as an emergency.

We recommit to preventing and responding to gender-based violence as a moral and strategic imperative, as a fairness and equity issue, and as a driver of our collective prosperity and security, he said.

In New York, UN Women chief Sima Bahous said gender-based violence (GBV) was a global crisis. In all of our own neighbourhoods, there are women and girls living in danger.

Around the world, conflict, climate-related natural disasters, food insecurity and human rights violations are exacerbating violence against women, she said.

The United Nations also issued a report, pointing out that more than 70 percent women have experienced violence in some crisis settings.

The report shows that in both rich and poor countries alike, gender prejudice has fuelled acts of violence towards women and girls. And this violence often goes unreported, silenced by stigma, shame, fear of the perpetrators and fear of a justice system that does not work for women,Ms Bahous said.

According to this report: Nearly 1 in 3 women experience violence at some stage and during crises, such as the Covid-19 pandemic, the violence increases.

Data from 13 countries since the pandemic, shows that 2 in 3 women reported living in fear of violence and food insecurity during the pandemic. Only 1 in 10 women said that victims would go to the police for help.

Stopping this violence starts with believing survivors, adopting comprehensive and inclusive approaches that tackle the root causes, transform harmful social norms, and empower women and girls. With survivor-centred essential services across policing, justice, health, and social sectors, and sufficient financing for the women’s rights agenda, we can end gender-based violence,the UN report adds.

The UN also suggests long-term strategies that tackle the root causes of violence, protecting the rights of women and girls, and promoting strong and autonomous women’s rights movements.

UN partner countries last year witnessed a 22 per cent increase in prosecution of perpetrators; 84 laws and policies were passed or strengthened; and more than 650,000 women and girls were able to access help – despite pandemic-related restrictions.

Libya's top electoral body said on Wednesday that the son and one-time heir apparent of the late Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi is disqualified from running in presidential elections that are supposed to take place next month.

According to a list of barred candidates issued by the country's High National Elections Committee, Seif al-Islam Gaddafi is ineligible because of previous convictions against him. He can appeal the committee's decision in court within the coming days..

Seif al-Islam was sentenced to death by a Tripoli court in 2015 for use of violence against protesters who were calling for his father to step down, but that ruling has since been called into question by Libya's rival authorities..

He is also wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of crimes against humanity related to the 2011 uprising against his father.

Libya is set to hold the first round of its presidential elections on Dec 24, after years of United Nations-led attempts to usher in a more democratic future and bring the country’s war to an end.

Adding to the complexity and concerns surrounding the election, the UN's top envoy for Libya recently decided to quit, though he said on Wednesday that he’s prepared to stay on if needed through the vote.

Following the overthrow and killing of Gaddafi, oil-rich Libya spent most of the last decade split between rival governments — one based in the capital, Tripoli, and the other in the eastern part of the country.

Each side in the civil war has also had the support of mercenaries and foreign forces from Turkey, Russia and Syria and other regional powers.

The son of Libya's former dictator submitted his candidacy papers in the southern town of Sabha, 650 kilometres (400 miles) south of the capital of Tripoli on Nov 14. It was the first time the 49-year old, who earned a PhD at the London School of Economics, had appeared in public in years.

He was captured by fighters in the town of Zintan late in 2011, the year when the popular uprising, backed by Nato, toppled his father after more than 40 years in power.

Muammar Gaddafi was killed that same year in October amid the ensuing fighting that would turn into a civil war. The dictator's son was released in June 2017.

STOCKHOLM: Sweden’s Prime Minister-elect Magdalena Andersson on Wednesday handed in her resignation hours after being appointed by parliament, after her budget failed to pass and the junior Green Party quit the coalition government.

While her stint was unexpectedly brief, Andersson made history by becoming the first woman elected to the post of prime minister in Sweden — she was to formally take over on Friday.

The 54-year-old economist who has served as finance minister for the past seven years said she hoped to be elected to the position again soon as the head of a minority government made up of only the Social Democrats.

“There is a constitutional practice that a coalition government should resign when one party quits,” Andersson, a Social Democrat, told reporters.

“I don’t want to lead a government whose legitimacy will be questioned.” Just hours earlier, parliament had elected Andersson after she clinched a last-minute deal with the Left Party to raise pensions in exchange for its crucial backing in Wednesday’s vote in parliament.

But the small Centre Party then withdrew its support for Andersson’s budget, due to the concessions made to the Left, leaving her budget with insufficient votes to pass in parliament.

Lawmakers instead adopted an alternative budget presented by the opposition conservative Moderates, Christian Democrats and far-right Sweden Democrats.

Andersson grudgingly said she would still be able to govern with that budget.

But in an even heavier and surprise blow, Greens leader Per Bolund said his party could not tolerate the opposition’s “historic budget, drafted for the first time with the far-right”, and quit the government.

Among other things, it could not accept the opposition’s planned tax cut on petrol, which it said would lead to higher emissions.

Speaker of parliament Andreas Norlen said he had accepted Andersson’s resignation and would contact party leaders before deciding Thursday how to proceed.

Sweden’s largest daily Dagens Nyheter said in an editorial that the turn of events could end up beneficial for Andersson, whom the Greens have vowed to support in a new prime ministerial vote.

“The Social Democrats can have all the cabinet posts and avoid all the compromises with the Greens,” it noted.

Despite being a nation that has long championed gender equality, Sweden has never before had a woman as prime minister.

After her election, Andersson called it “a special day”, coming 100 years after the Scandinavian country allowed female suffrage.

WASHINGTON: The United States said on Tuesday it will release millions of barrels of oil from strategic reserves in coordination with China, India, South Korea, Japan and Britain, to try to cool prices after Opec+ producers repeatedly ignored calls for more crude.

US President Joe Biden, facing low approval ratings amid rising inflation ahead of next year’s congressional elections, has grown frustrated at repeatedly asking the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, known as Opec+, to pump more oil without getting any response.

Crude oil prices recently touched seven-year highs and although they are still some way short of levels reached between 2011 and 2014, when they broke through $100 a barrel, many consumers are feeling the pain of a dramatic increase from a year ago.

The US announcement was for a release of 50 million barrels, the equivalent of about two and a half days of US demand. India, meanwhile, said it would release 5 million barrels, while Britain said it would allow the voluntary release of 1.5 million barrels of oil from privately held reserves.

Details on the amount and timing of the release of oil from South Korea, Japan and China were not announced. Seoul said it would decide after discussions with the United States and other allies. And Japanese media said Tokyo would detail its plans on Wednesday.

Officials said it was the first time that the United States had coordinated such a move with some of the world’s largest oil consumers.

Opec+, which includes Saudi Arabia and other US allies in the Gulf, as well as Russia, has rebuffed requests to pump more at its monthly meetings. It meets again on Dec 2 to discuss policy but has so far shown no indication it will change tack.

The group has been struggling to meet existing targets under its agreement to gradually increase production by 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) each month — a pace Washington sees as too slow — and it remains worried that a resurgence of coronavirus cases could once again drive down demand.

Recent high oil prices have been caused by a sharp rebound in global demand, which cratered early in the pandemic in 2021, and analysts have said that releasing reserves may not be enough to curb further rises.

“Its not large enough to bring down prices in a meaningful way and may even backfire if it prompts Opec+ to slow the pace at which it is raising output,” said Caroline Bain, chief commodities economist at Capital Economics Ltd.

Benchmark Brent crude was trading above $80 a barrel on Tuesday, up from its levels before the announcement but still well below last month’s three-year high of more than $86.

The release from the US Strategic Petroleum Reserve would be a combination of a loan and a sale to companies, US officials said. The 32 million barrels loan will take place over the next several months, while the administration would accelerate a sale of 18 million barrels already approved by Congress to raise funds for the budget.

“We will continue talking to international partners on this issue. The president stands ready to take additional action if needed, and is prepared to use his full authorities working in coordination with the rest of the world,” a senior US administration official told reporters.

An Opec+ source and several market analysts said the release was not as big as the headline figure suggested.

Chinese President Xi Jinping told leaders of the 10-country Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) at a summit on Monday that Beijing would not "bully" its smaller regional neighbours, amid rising tension over the South China Sea.

Beijing's territorial claims over the sea clash with those of several Southeast Asian nations and have raised alarm from Washington to Tokyo.

But Xi said China would never seek hegemony nor take advantage of its size to coerce smaller countries and would work with Asean to eliminate "interference".

"China was, is, and will always be a good neighbour, good friend, and good partner of Asean," Chinese state media quoted Xi as saying.

China’s assertion of sovereignty over the South China Sea has set it against Asean members Vietnam and the Philippines, while Brunei, Taiwan and Malaysia also lay claim to parts.

The Philippines on Thursday condemned the actions of three Chinese coast guard vessels that it said blocked and used water cannon on resupply boats headed towards a Philippine-occupied atoll in the sea.

The United States on Friday called the Chinese actions "dangerous, provocative, and unjustified" and warned that an armed attack on Philippine vessels would invoke US mutual defence commitments.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte told the summit hosted by Xi that he "abhors" the altercation and said the rule of law was the only way out of the dispute. He referred to a 2016 international arbitration ruling which found China's maritime claim to the sea had no legal basis.

"This does not speak well of the relations between our nations," said Duterte, who will leave office next year and has been criticised in the past for failing to condemn China's conduct in the disputed waters.

Asean groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Xi told the summit that China and Asean had "cast off the gloom of the Cold War" — when the region was wracked by superpower competition and conflicts such as the Vietnam War — and had jointly maintained regional stability.

China frequently criticises the United States for "Cold War thinking" when Washington engages its regional allies to push back against Beijing's growing military and economic influence.

US President Joe Biden joined Asean leaders for a virtual summit in October and pledged greater engagement with the region.

The summit was held without a representative from Myanmar, Malaysia's Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah said on Monday. The reason for the non-attendance was not immediately clear, and a spokesperson for Myanmar's military government did not answer calls seeking comment.

Asean sidelined Myanmar junta leader Min Aung Hlaing, who has led a bloody crackdown on dissent since seizing power on February 1, from virtual summits last month over his failure to make inroads in implementing an agreed peace plan, in an unprecedented exclusion for the bloc.

Myanmar refused to send junior representation and blamed Asean for departing from its non-interference principle and caving to Western pressure.

China lobbied for Min to attend the summit, according to diplomatic sources.

In celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the UAE, the exhibition displays the designs of competition finalists

22nd November 2021, Dubai, UAE: Hotel Indigo has partnered with The Zay Initiative, a non-profit organisation to launch an international design competition to celebrate the UAE’s cultural heritage. The ‘ZAY – THE ART OF UAE DRESS’ has received numerous entries, all showing a very high level of creativity, singularity, and complex details.

Hotel guests and visitors can be a part of the historical journey as the UAE celebrates its Golden Jubilee this year, by visiting the exhibition and voting for their favourite dress. Each vote will automatically enter a raffle with a chance to win an incredible staycation at Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown. The crowned winner and public’s choice will be revealed in a special invite-only event held on Sunday, 28th November 2021, from 4PM to 6PM in Open Sesame social eatery.

After receiving a high level of entries, all showing competitive approaches, the jury has shortlisted five finalists. These received the incredible opportunity to bring their winning designs to life and display their works at an exclusive fashion exhibition at Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown from 2nd November until 15th December 2021. Each winning design will then be part of The Zay Initiative’s permanent collection of Arab attire, where they collect, document, conserve and exhibit traditional Emirati historical attire and their stories for global viewing.

The notable jury includes Feryal Al Bastaki, Founder and Designer of Feryal Al Bastaki Fashion, Dr Reem Tariq El Mutwalli, Founder (CEO) of the The Zay Initiative, Patricia Millns, Fellow of Royal Society of Arts (FRSA), Artist Advisor, and Astrid Lesuisse, Art Manager at Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown and project curator.

This exclusive exhibition showcases the work of competition winners: Pavwan Malik, Pakistani fashion design student at DiDi, Hala Louna Bunni, Lebanese-Iraqi artist, Shaikha Alghaithi, Emirati Fashion Designer, Sauda Akhlad, Indian fashion design student at the American University in the Emirates, and Marwa BenSlil, Libyan fashion design student at the American University in the Emirates.

Talking about the unique initiative, Laura Eggleton, General Manager of Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown said, “We believe that it is essential to preserve and accurately portray the intangible cultural heritage of the UAE, and, we are elated to partner with The Zay Initiative which aims to empower and sustain global cross-cultural dialogue to inspire creative minds.”

She continued: “Through this competition we aim to shed light on the traditional clothing of the Emirati woman, whilst giving a platform for emerging designers to showcase their creative flair.  This exciting competition aims to reach audiences across the globe, allowing people to explore and discover the allure of UAE culture.”



  • November 28, 2021: Grand Finale Ceremony and awards jury
  • December 15, 2021: Last day of exhibition.


For further information and details to be a part of Zay – The Art of UAE Dress, please visit or call +971 (0)54 793 5155




Media Contact: 

Georgina Scott

Account Director 

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050 716 1379





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InterContinental Hotels Group® (IHG®) announced the first Hotel Indigo® branded property in India, GCC and Africa, that opened in October 2020. Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown is a refreshingly vibrant lifestyle hotel for the curious explorers looking to discover the delights of Dubai.

Positioned as a vivacious hub where inspiring minds are brought together and immersed in art, design, and fashion, Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown brings a stimulating environment where guests can experience the architectural exuberance of the new city with the trading posts of the old.







Accra’s premier art gallery announces its upcoming group exhibition [West] African Renaissance in Dubai featuring works by some of its most significant artists from West Africa.

ARTHUR TIMOTHY The Repose, 2021. Oil on canvas. 121.9 x 152.4 cm 48 x 60 inches

Copyright the Artist. Photo courtesy Gallery 1957.

On November 14 and for the duration of one month, Gallery 1957 will open [West] African Renaissance, an exhibition in collaboration with Christie’s Dubai.  On view will be a selection of its most esteemed artists from West Africa, such as Ghanaian artists Gideon Appah, Kwesi Botchway, Joshua Oheneba Takyi, Lord Ohene Okyere Bour, Annan Affotey, Serge Attukwei Clottey, Isshaq Ismail   Godfried Donkor, Arthur Timothy and Afia Prempeh as well as works by Nigerian painters Oliver Okolo, Juwon Aderemi, and Peter Ojingiri. These artists have been trailblazers in what is considered to be a Renaissance for modern and contemporary art from Africa and the African diaspora, with artists from the continent gaining recognition regionally and globally.


Over the last decade, artists from the African continent have been displayed at art fairs, biennials, major exhibitions and are included in the permanent collections of some of the world’s most established art institutions. Art fairs dedicated solely to artists from Africa and the diaspora now take place throughout the world, further defining the importance of modern and contemporary art from Africa—a continent that has always been influential.


The paintings included in [West] African Renaissance capture Africa, and more specifically, the nations of West Africa on the brink of ideological change, as seen by artists within the continent. They mark a West African cultural Renaissance that has been rising for many years. Finally, as the poignant figures in these works seem to say, and as the artists would undoubtedly agree, the world is noticing us.


Marwan Zakhem, Founder of Gallery 1957,


“Working with Christie’s, a vocal promoter of African Contemporary art internationally is an obvious fit,” said Marwan Zakhem. “Our focus has always been to support the careers of West African artists, and to ensure they continue to reach new audiences on the global stage. In partnering with Christie’s Dubai, the ever-flourishing creativity of the continent will continue to be seen by international audiences in a part of the world where collectors have long championed our work.”


Michael Jeha, Chairman Christie’s Middle East,


“Following the ongoing collaboration with 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair, Christie’s is delighted to partner with Gallery 1957 to present a wonderful exhibition of contemporary African art to our longstanding clients and interested audience in the Middle East and beyond. will feature the entire exhibition online to engage an even wider arts community, offering a truly international platform to a very talented generation of African artists,” commented Michael Jeha, Chairman Christie’s Middle East.


About the Artists:


Ghanaian artists such as Isshaq Ismail, Kwesi Botchway, Annan Affotey, Lord Ohene and Afia Prempeh, the latter one of Ghana’s up and coming female artists, are known for their startling take on African portraiture, incorporating the social context of their sitters in each work.


Others, like Gideon Appah and Joshua Oheneba Takyi, delve into abstract figuration, often using the human form as an abstract backdrop within a surrealist setting of objects, luscious landscapes, architecture, daily rituals, and African folklore. Oheneba Takyi, for example, is known for his signature use of the chair in each of his paintings—the inanimate object obscures his human forms through its own shape and color. Gideon Appah, on the other hand, immediately immerses his spectators into a surrealist playground of jewel-like compositions that are akin to dreams. Nature and ghostly reflections of human figures emerge to reflect on the artist’s familial history as well as that of his country. Godfried Donkor’s meticulous paintings incorporate collage amidst his highly detailed figures to explore the socio-historical relationships of Africa and Europe.


Also presented in the exhibition are several of Attukwei Clottey’s intimate charcoal drawings that re-appropriate the use of African masks from the colonial Western artistic practices of the 20th century. Clottey is an artist working in a variety of media, from installation to sculpture, and from photography to performance.


Born  in  Sierra  Leone  to  Ghanaian  parents,  Arthur  Timothy  recently  celebrated  his  first  solo exhibition at Gallery 1957, marking his debut in the country of his birth. A qualified architect, Timothy’s vivid oil paintings offer vibrant depictions of post-colonial life through recollections of his childhood, which was spent in Ghana, Sierra Leone and the United Kingdom.


Nigerian painters on view include Oliver Okolo, Juwon Aderemi, and Peter Ojingiri. Like their Ghanaian artist neighbors, they similarly focus on the African individual, painting men and woman from everyday life but with a heightened sense of abstraction. These artists often play with their subjects’ gaze.

About Gallery 1957

Based in Accra, with a London outpost opened in 2020, Gallery 1957 has a curatorial focus on West Africa. Presenting a programme of exhibitions, installations and performances by the region’s most significant artists, the gallery serves as a vital platform, promoting West Africa’s presence within the art scene by hosting ambitious exhibitions, providing resources for residencies and participating in international art fairs. Founded by Marwan Zakhem in 2016, Gallery 1957 has evolved from over 15 years of private collecting. The gallery now hosts three spaces in Accra – one in the Kempinski Hotel and two in the Galleria Mall – and a London outpost in Hyde Park Gate.


Group Exhibition: [West] African Renaissance - Gallery 1957 in collaboration with Christie’s Dubai

Dates: 14 Nov - 14 Dec, 2021

Opening: 14 November, 2021

Address: Gate Village, Building 5, Podium Level, Dubai International Financial Centre ,Dubai, UAE Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Please click on the links below to download the press material and image.

Press release-Gallery 1957 Christie's Dubai .docx.docx

Michael Jeha


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