UNbacked Quartet hopes new Palestinian government leads to renewed engagement

The so-called diplomatic Quartet on the Middle East, comprising the UN, European Union (EU), Russia and the United States, conferred in Cairo in what UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Alvaro de Soto termed a “good” working-level meeting. The Quartet, seeking a two-State solution, has frozen contacts, and donors have withheld contributions, pending a commitment by the Hamas Government to renounce violence, recognize Israel and accept agreements already signed between Israel and the Palestinians.The Quartet today reiterated a statement it made after a top-level meeting in September, welcoming Palestinian efforts to form a unity government in the hope that the platform of such a Government would reflect these principles and allow for early engagement, Mr. de Soto said. These include a commitment to non-violence and recognition of Israel’s right to exist.He also hoped that such a Government could help to reduce the sort of Palestinian rocket attacks into Israel which today “tragically claimed” one Israeli life in the town of Sderot.The Quartet discussed the security situation in the area where Israel’s shelling of the occupied Gaza Strip killed 19 Palestinian civilians, including eight children and seven women.While in Cairo, Mr. de Soto intends to meet with Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit and with Amre Moussa, Secretary-General of the League of Arab States. read more

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Stress management workshop to be held for employees

Headaches. Low energy. Upset stomach. Chest pain. Tense muscles.These are just a few symptoms of stress. Occasionally feeling stressed is your body’s natural way of responding to an unfavourable, demanding or even positive circumstance. Long-term stress, however, may lead to more serious physical ailments such as heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes as well as mental illnesses such as depression or anxiety.  Coinciding with Bell Let’s Talk Day and Thrive mental health week, Brock’s Office of Human Resources is hosting a complimentary workshop on stress relaxation techniques Wednesday, Jan. 31 from noon to 1 p.m. in Plaza 410. Facilitated by Brock’s Employee Assistance Program provider, Morneau Shepell, the seminar will help employees better understand stress response, teach them how to manage stress and will provide an opportunity to practise both proactive and reactive stress-reducing exercises.  “We all deal with stress,” says Kathryn Walker, Manager, Health Management and Wellness. “Everyone can benefit from attending this workshop. Participants will leave with practical tools and examples that will assist them in relaxing and coping with inevitable stress.” Brock employees are invited to register for Stress Relaxation Technique on Focus on Learning. The seminar is limited to 30 participants. read more

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