Philippines Energy Secretary to QNA: Visit of HH the Amir Paves Way for Bilateral Energy Cooperation

HE the Republic of the Philippines’ Secretary of Energy Raphael P.M. Lotilla expressed optimism about the visit of HH the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani to the Philippines with regards to fortifying bilateral energy relations by accelerating the approval of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Energy Cooperation between the Department of Energy in the Philippines and QatarEnergy.

His Excellency told Qatar News Agency that the State of Qatar is a global key player in the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) industry and is widely known as a top global dry natural gas producer, LNG exporter, and natural gas reserves holder, which has a good reputation for keeping its geopolitics apart from its supply commitments, expressing his hope to benefit from these capabilities.

HE the Secretary of Energy said that the continuous and active coordination between the key officials of the Philippines and Qatar regarding energy matters signifies the utmost interest of both countries in strengthening bilateral energy relati
ons to a higher level, adding that since 2018, both sides have made significant efforts to enter into a MoU on Energy Cooperation, which evolved over time and through a series of communications.

Lotilla added that work is currently underway to finalize the MoU on energy cooperation with QatarEnergy, which once signed, will elevate bilateral energy ties and bear the fruit of bilateral efforts.

The Secretary of Energy of the Philippines also pointed out that the Philippines faces several challenges when it comes to the energy sector, such as the electrification of unserved and underserved rural areas, delays in transmission projects that hamper the attainment of the RE targets, the heavy reliance on imported and conventional fuels, and the volatility of oil prices in international markets.

HE the Secretary of Energy said that despite all that, the Philippines is trying to turn these challenges into opportunities, through enhancing energy sources, particularly renewable energies, importing LNG from Qatar, and
by responding to emerging energy challenges and issues to ensure a sustainable and stable energy supply.

His Excellency added that the Philippines is pursuing a sustainable path towards clean energy and a low-carbon future, and that for it to achieve this envisioned future, the Philippine agenda was crafted aimed at facilitating access to affordable energy, securing a reliable and resilient energy supply, and transitioning to clean and sustainable energy sources.

His Excellency said that in order to encourage investments in the energy sector, the Philippine government has strengthened its coordination with various energy stakeholders by establishing linkages between government offices and entities involved in processing energy projects, permits, and applications, in order to create an attractive investment environment and manage energy generation and distribution projects.

The Secretary of Energy of the Philippines expressed hope that this visit will be an opportunity to enjoin Qatar to invest in the imple
mentation of energy projects in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), particularly in the advancement of the power sector and the upgrading of the transmission and distribution backbone in the off-grid and remote areas in Mindanao, which His Excellency added is the second-largest island in the Philippines, having substantial and growing energy needs despite being rich with RE resources, with some of its areas still lacking access to electricity due to not being connected to the main power grid.

HE Raphael P.M. Lotilla pointed out that the Philippines allows 100 percent foreign ownership for Renewable Energy (RE) technologies and has in place a Green Energy Auction Program (GEAP) in order to promote a competitive method for setting RE power supply rates in the country.

Source: Qatar News Agency

QRCS Completes Seasonal Assistance for Non-Food Items in Northwest Syria.

Doha: Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) has successfully concluded the project of seasonal assistance for non-food items to mitigate the impact of winter on the most vulnerable displaced people in northwest Syria.

Funded by Qatar Fund For Development (QFFD), the project was primarily intended to provide essential winter aid to 10,000 displaced families living in camps, in addition to distributing e-vouchers to beneficiaries which helped them purchase winter requirements from sales centers distributed to multiple regions based on their desire, conditions and needs.

The items included heating fuel, carpets, blankets, and tent insulation kits which strikingly helped improve the life of roughly 53,000 displaced people and enabled them to surmount their suffering during chilly weather and mitigate its impacts on them and their children.

The project culminated in a productive cooperation between QFFD and QRCS and was among a series of humanitarian projects funded by QFFD and carried out by QRCS in several countr
ies around the globe, particularly in the impoverished countries that grapple with humanitarian crises, conflicts and disasters.

Source: Qatar News Agency

Rescue Crews Pull Out Bodies of 190 Palestinians from Mass Grave in Gaza’s Khan Younis

Rescue and ambulance crews in the Gaza Strip pulled out on Sunday the bodies of 190 Palestinian martyrs in Al-Nasser Medical Complex, after the israeli occupation forces withdrew from the city of Khan Younis, south of the Gaza Strip.

Press sources told Palestinian news agency (Wafa) that the rescue and ambulance crews began pulling out the bodies of dozens of Palestinian martyrs on Sunday morning from a mass grave in Khan Younis.

The same sources indicated that the bodies of about 500 missing Palestinians were found dead in the Khan Younis massacre, adding that about 2,000 Palestinians have disappeared after the occupation forces withdrew from several areas in the Gaza Strip.

The corpses belong to Palestinians of different groups and ages, who were killed by the occupation forces during their raid of the complex, after which they buried them in a mass, the sources added.

Wafa confirmed that the largest number of martyrs are victims of mass graves and hospital raids, including children, explaining that the
occupation forces deliberately bulldoze dozens of bodies and bury them before withdrawing from any area in the Gaza Strip.

Source: Qatar News Agency

Qatari Student Coterie Wins Higher Rankings in Arab AI Olympiad Contest

Doha: A coterie of students from Qatar achieved advanced places in the 3rd edition of the Arab Artificial Intelligence Olympiad contest held in Jordan with the participation of 350 Arab students at the school and college levels.

Organized by the Arab Robotics Association in partnership with STEAM Center, the competition was intended to employ the skills of secondary school students and imbue them with global talents, as the 21st century witnesses a rapid evolution in the world of technology, particularly in the areas of algorithms, mathematics, programming, computer vision, cybersecurity, data analysis and embedded systems.

The event brought together students from five Qatari secondary schools, 14 technology track students, three trainers, alongside the team supervisor and senior guidance expert in the Information Technology Department at the Ministry of Education and Higher Education (MoEHE), Aisha Al Mansouri.

Omar Bin Khattab secondary School ranked first at the level of the Arab region in computer visi
on, with Musab bin Amir Independent Secondary School for Boys and the Qatar Science and Technology Secondary School for Boys being ranked second in cybersecurity at the level of the Arab region.

Additionally, the Qatar Science and Technology Secondary School for Boys ranked third in the embedded systems at the level of the Arab region, with the Qatar Science and Technology Secondary School for Boys winning the Arab championship title in all contests.

The participation of the Qatari team came under the supervision of MoEHE, represented by the Information Technology Department, in pursuit of conducting enhanced activities that broadly support the technology track students and upgrade their skills in robotics and AI.

Source: Qatar News Agency

Israeli occupying forces kill Palestinian woman in West Bank

Palestine General Authority for Civil Affairs announced Sunday the martyrdom of a Palestinian woman after she was shot by occupying forces in the northern valley.

Labiba Ghannam, aged 43, has been reported deceased by the Authority to the Ministry of Health. The incident occurred at the Hamra military checkpoint in the city of Tubas, as stated in an official press release from the Authority. The National Campaign to Recover the Bodies of Palestinian Martyrs confirmed in a press release that occupying forces detained the bodies of three martyred individuals after shooting them in Al-Khalil and the northern valley.

Occupying forces are holding 497 bodies, including 26 prisoners, 51 children, and 6 female martyrs, in refrigerators and cemeteries. Notably, these numbers do not include the detained martyrs in the Gaza Strip since October 7th, for which information is currently unavailable.

Source: Kuwait News Agency