Pirelli: a Video Illustrating 11 Years of Annual Reports

MILAN, Italy, March 13, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Financial statements that can be leafed through like art books. Since 2010, Pirelli’s annual report has changed guise, becoming a publication enriched by the contribution of personalities from the world of art and culture from all over the world. A brand storytelling project that, for the past 11 years, has used essays, images and artwork to tell the story of the company, going beyond the figures, in line with a tradition that has always seen Pirelli at the forefront in promoting its corporate culture with innovative forms of communication.
Cartoonists, writers, street artists, scriptwriters, calligraphers, musicians, philosophers, ceramists and illustrators alike have enriched the company’s annual reports over the years: artists with different backgrounds, nationalities and generations who have portrayed the company’s soul in original and unique ways. An artistic journey illustrated in the video ’11 Years of Pirelli Annual Reports,’ a visual summary of the works, texts and graphics that have been featured in Pirelli’s annual reports from 2010 to 2021, while waiting to discover the creative approach that will be used in the 2022 annual report.

The first creative project linked to Pirelli’s annual report, in 2010, saw the involvement of photography students from NABA (New Academy of Fine Arts) in Milan, who were called upon to interpret a theme that has become increasingly relevant over time, that of sustainability. Then, in 2011, it was the turn of designer Stefan Glerum, who interpreted the values of Pirelli: reliability, flexibility, speed, technology and innovation. In 2012, it was the turn of New Yorker cartoonist Liza Donnelly, who interpreted in graphic form the ten words chosen by university students from around the world on the most significant values for their future. The 2013 annual report saw writer and screenwriter Hanif Kureishi coordinate 10 young international talents in reworking the concept of the wheel in the project ‘Spinning the Wheel.’ In 2014, street art was showcased with works by the Brazilian Marina Zumi, the German Dome and the Russian Alexey Luka, focusing on themes such as the street, mobility and multiculturalism. The following year, in 2015, Pirelli called Russian artist Pokras Lampas, an exponent of modern calligraphy, to represent the value of uniqueness – hence the title of the publication: ‘Every Mark is Unique’ – through handwriting and fingerprints; the report also included the text ‘Like the sentinel moon’ by writer Javier Marias. The 2017 ‘Data Meets Passion’ annual report described Pirelli’s digital transformation, illustrated by the artist Emiliano Ponzi and with the contribution of three internationally renowned writers: Mohsin Hamid, Tom McCarthy and Ted Chiang. In 2018, the annual report was dedicated to 25 years of ‘Power is Nothing Without Control,’ with images evocative of the pay-off that identifies Pirelli around the world and texts by three internationally renowned authors: Adam Greenfield, Lisa Halliday and J.R. Moehringer. In 2019, resilience was the central theme of ‘The Road Ahead,’ with unpublished texts by writer Emmanuel Carrère and essayist John Seabrook, and illustrations by visual artist Selman Hoşgör. ‘The Human Dimension’ was the title of the 2020 annual report, in which three authors – Luciano Floridi, Michele Masneri and Jia Tolentino – reflected on the importance of human capital and the impacts that technological and social transformations have on people. Finally, in 2021, several internationally renowned artists – Giovanni Mengoni, Tu Yonghong, Lisette Correa, Brazilian Art Collective and Andrei Cavassi – created works of art inspired by the sounds, colours and atmospheres of five Pirelli factories around the world, accompanied by original texts by the theologian and philosopher Vito Mancuso and writer Nadia Owusu.

For more information:

Press Office LaPresse – ufficio.stampa@lapresse.it

LINK VIDEO: https://we.tl/t-S1my8tg94A

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8786974

PharmaLedger Association Launches Digital Trust Ecosystem in Healthcare

photo PharmaLedger video release link

original image of PharmaLedger event and link to video release

BASEL, Switzerland, March 13, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The PharmaLedger Association™ (PLA), a not-for-profit based in Switzerland, announces the endorsement of its 3-year strategic plan to implement and promote a Digital Trust Ecosystem in healthcare (DTE-H) at its Annual General Meeting held in Lucerne, Switzerland on 1 March 2023. The member organizations also confirmed the appointment of eight Directors to its board, delivering on PLA’s core value of “Ecosystem Leadership.”

Representing the diversity of healthcare, PLA’s founding members comprise of large and small pharmaceutical companies, research organizations, patient representative organizations, non-profit organizations, technology, and healthcare service providers. PLA has confirmed its mandate as a pre-competition umbrella organization delivering common and interoperable digital solutions in the areas of Product TrustDecentralized Clinical Trials, and Supply Chain Traceability.

  • Products & Project: In Q1 2023, PLA will release the first qualified product, electronic Product Information for implementation by its members.
    In Q2 2023, the Association will continue with the development of new products in its innovation xLab, including of a product digital twin, decentralized identities, and verifiable credentials to facilitate visibility, security, traceability, and trust in all areas of healthcare.
  • Governance & Compliance: PLA will leverage its capability to develop, qualify, launch, and maintain products in healthcare’s highly regulated environment by ensuring continuous adherence to antitrust, intellectual property, data privacy, and Computerized System Assurance guidelines.
  • Ecosystem Engagement & Growth: The association will continue to onboard new members and engage with authorities, trade associations and standards development organizations, ensuring growth and financial viability.
  • Platform Technology & Security: PLA will focus on easing adoption of new solutions with its members and users while maintaining the cybersecurity benefits of its architecture.

The formation of PLA and the endorsement of its mission by diverse members of healthcare is a major milestone. This paves the way for delivery of widely trusted blockchain-based platforms with new open-source healthcare solutions to create value for patients and ecosystem stakeholders. PLA is grateful to its 20 founding members and invites all healthcare related organizations to learn more and engage towards the realization of a trusted Healthcare 4.0.

“Blockchain is a team sport. PLA has started with a diverse and strong team of members with a common vision and who believe in real change. With PLA we have the right vehicle, resources, and roadmap to take patients to a better place in healthcare,” Daniel Fritz, Executive Director, PharmaLedger Association.


PLA is the result of the successful completion of the PharmaLedger research project, a €22 million, 30-member consortium with 12 large pharma companies and 18 public partners, funded under the European Union (EU) and European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA)’s Innovative Health Initiative.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/0682572a-b8ac-4b5b-885b-8af008287cff

Contact – info@pharmaledger.org / www.pharmaledger.org

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 1000797758

Oxford Population Health and SomaLogic deliver 28 million proteomic data points on China Kadoorie Biobank samples

BOULDER, Colo., March 13, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — SomaLogic, Inc., a leader in proteomics technology, recently completed the 7,000-plex assay on and delivered data for 4,000 plasma samples from the China Kadoorie Biobank (CKB), one of the world’s largest prospective studies. The SomaLogic team provided more than 28 million data points from the assay which will be combined with other available genetic, lifestyle, anthropometric and health outcome data to address a range of research questions. This work builds on a successful history of SomaScan® Platform utilization in some of the world’s largest population proteomics biobank projects, including the EPICMESA, Fenland, Whitehall II, HUNT3, CRIC, COPD Gene, Spiromics, deCODE and ARIC datasets.

Professor Zhengming Chen, Richard Peto Professor of Epidemiology at Oxford Population Health and UK-Principal Investigator of the China Kadoorie Biobank, said “The large-scale application of proteomics assays in big population biobanks such as CKB will be a game changer. Building on the experience gained in these initial 4,000 samples, we will seek to extend the use of the proteomic assay to a much larger number of samples in the near future.”

The China Kadoorie Biobank (www.ckbiobank.org) was established to investigate the main genetic and environmental causes of common chronic diseases in the Chinese population. Between 2004 and 2008, over 510,000 adults were recruited from ten geographically defined regions of China, with extensive data collection by questionnaire and physical measurements, and with long-term storage of blood samples for future study. All participants are now being monitored for fatal and non-fatal health outcomes through linkage with established registries and health insurance databases in the study areas.

This large, well-established study will be a uniquely powerful and rich resource for investigating the main causes of many common chronic diseases over the next few decades, and the information generated has the potential to improve understanding of disease etiology, risk prediction and development of new treatments. The project is a long-term collaboration between Oxford Population Health, Peking University and the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences.

SomaLogic’s proprietary SomaScan Platform is designed to be a universal platform that can be applied across research and discovery, translational research and biopharmaceutical development, and clinical applications. SomaLogic can run approximately 7,000 protein measurements on a single 55 microliter plasma or serum sample. The company has run more than 550,000 samples to date.

About SomaLogic 
SomaLogic (Nasdaq: SLGC) seeks to deliver precise, meaningful and actionable health-management information that empowers individuals worldwide to continuously optimize their personal health and wellness throughout their lives. This essential information, to be provided through a global network of partners and users, is derived from SomaLogic’s personalized measurement of important changes in an individual’s proteins over time. For more information, visit www.somalogic.com .

About Oxford Population Health
Oxford Population Health (the Nuffield Department of Population Health) is a world-leading research institute, based at the University of Oxford, that investigates the causes and prevention of disease.

We have over 750 staff, students and academic visitors working in a number of world-renowned population health research groups, including the Cancer Epidemiology Unit (CEU), Clinical Trial Service Unit and Epidemiological Studies Unit (CTSU), and the National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit (NPEU), and other groups working on public health, health economics, ethics and health record linkage. Oxford Population Health is also a key partner in the Oxford University Big Data Institute.


Forward Looking Statements Disclaimer
This press release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and other federal securities laws. All statements, other than statements of historical fact included in this press release, regarding our strategy, future operations, financial position, estimated revenues, projections, prospects, plans and objectives of management are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements generally are identified by the words “believe,” “project,” “forecast,” “guidance,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “intend,” “strategy,” “future,” “opportunity,” “plan,” “may,” “should,” “will,” “would,” “will be,” “continue,” “will likely result,” “possible,” “potential,” “predict,” “pursue,” “target” and similar expressions, although not all forward-looking statements contain such identifying words. Forward-looking statements are predictions, projections and other statements about future events that are based on current expectations and assumptions and, as a result, are subject to risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements do not guarantee future performance and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors.   Many factors could cause actual future events to differ materially from the forward-looking statements in this press release, including factors which are beyond SomaLogic’s control. You should carefully consider these risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to, those factors described under Part I, Item 1A – “Risk Factors” in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and other filings we make with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These filings identify and address important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual events and results to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements, and SomaLogic assumes no obligation and does not intend to update or revise these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should any of the assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary in material respects from those projected in these forward-looking statements. The Company will not and does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as may be required under applicable securities laws.

Media Contact
Emilia Costales

Investor Contacts
Lauren Glaser

Marissa Bych
Gilmartin Group LLC

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8786241

ResMed’s Annual Global Sleep Survey Finds 8 in 10 Adults Experience Signs of Disruption Related to Their Quality of Sleep

  • 81% of respondents experience one or more symptoms indicating poor sleep quality, despite 64% saying they’re satisfied with the quantity of their sleep
  • Women and older generations are less satisfied with the quality and quantity of their sleep compared to the survey’s overall average
  • Annual survey aims to raise awareness for sleep health during National Sleep Awareness Week and World Sleep Day

SAN DIEGO, March 13, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — ResMed (NYSE: RMD, ASX: RMD) announced today the results from its 2023 Global Sleep Survey in conjunction with National Sleep Awareness Week (March 12-18) and World Sleep Day (March 17) to raise awareness for the importance of sleep as a key component of physical and mental health.

The survey found that despite 64% of respondents saying they are satisfied with the quantity of their sleep, more than 80% report experiencing symptoms of disruption related to their sleep quality, with consumers most commonly reporting mood changes, such as depression or irritability (33%), waking up with a dry mouth or sore throat (30%), difficulty concentrating during the day (30%), and excessive daytime sleepiness (29%).

The 2023 Global Sleep Survey asked more than 20,000 respondents from 12 countries during January 2023 about the quantity and quality of their sleep, bedtime routines, and sleep habits and found differences in respondents’ quantity and quality of sleep based on location, gender, and age:

  • Respondents from India (84%), Mexico (69%), and China (66%) are most satisfied with their quantity of sleep, while those in Australia (47%), Japan (46%), and the UK (45%) are the least satisfied with the quantity of their sleep.
  • 8 in 10 respondents reported one or more symptoms of sleep disruption related to sleep quality; Mexico (87%), France (87%), and South Korea (85%) had the highest rates of reported symptoms, while Japan (60%) had the lowest.
  • 60% of women report being satisfied with their quantity of sleep (the least of any gender), compared to 68% of men and 65% of nonbinary respondents. Women (83%) and nonbinary (94%) respondents were more likely to say they have at least one symptom of poor sleep compared to men (79%).
  • 52% of women report regularly waking up with a negative feeling in the morning (e.g. cranky, anxious, miserable), with 26% saying they’re still tired. Conversely, 58% of men report they are more likely to wake up feeling positive (e.g. happy, refreshed, calm, energetic).
  • 43% of Gen Xers and Boomers and 49% of the Silent Generation report that they aren’t satisfied with the quality of their sleep, compared to only 37% of Millennials and 31% of Gen Zers.

Despite a majority of survey respondents reporting they wake up with symptoms of poor sleep quality – one-third (33%) of respondents have not been tested for sleep apnea or sought medical help for other sleep conditions because they do not believe they have sleep-related medical conditions. Additionally, 49% of respondents said their doctor has never asked them proactively about their sleep quality.

“Prioritizing sleep is one of the most effective ways to improve your health, and poor sleep can increase the risk of diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and depression,” said Carlos M. Nunez, M.D., chief medical officer for ResMed. “It’s critical to have an honest discussion with your healthcare provider about your sleep habits and seek help if you’re experiencing patterns or symptoms of poor sleep as it could point to a more concerning health issue or sleep disorder such as sleep apnea.”

What’s Keeping People Up at Night and Tools They’re Using to Improve Their Sleep
Additional findings of ResMed’s 2023 Global Sleep Survey address what’s keeping people up at night and how people use technology to improve sleep. Findings include:

  • Amidst global reports of potential economic instability, anxiety/depression (33%) and work-related concerns (33%) are the two most cited reasons for keeping people up at night – an increase compared to a similar question asked in 2022 (29% and 22%, respectively).
  • Anxiety/depression was most commonly reported as the reason keeping people up at night in Brazil (46%), the U.S. (45%), Australia (42%), and the UK (42%) – and least reported in Japan (24%), India (22%), and Germany (21%).
  • Among consumers whose sleep has gotten worse over the past year, nearly one-third say financial pressures have caused the decline in their sleep quality (32%), with those in the U.S. (41%), Mexico (39%), and India (37%) reporting the highest impact.
  • 43% of Millennials report using a sleep tracker to keep records of their sleep patterns and quality of sleep, higher than Gen Z (35%), Gen X (28%), Boomers (15%), and the Silent Generation (7%).

To learn more about ResMed’s 2023 Global Sleep Survey or to take a quick self-assessment for your risk of sleep apnea, visit SleepForBetterTomorrow.com. Plus, learn about the digital health technologies that are transforming how we sleep, breathe, live, and care for patients on ResMed’s new podcast series, Awaken Your Best, hosted by Dr. Nunez and available anywhere you stream your favorite podcasts including on Spotify and Apple Podcasts. The first episode premiers today – Monday, March 13 – featuring a conversation on the latest digital health trends with Gary Shapiro, acclaimed author and president and CEO of the Consumer Technology Association.

Survey Methodology
ResMed 2023 Global Sleep Survey included 20,069 total participants across the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, South Korea, Mexico, Japan, Singapore, Australia, Brazil, China, and India, conducted in January 2023.

For generational comparisons, the survey defines Gen Z as ages 18-26, Millennials ages 27-42, Gen X ages 43-58, Baby Boomers ages 59-77, and the Silent Generation ages 78-95.

About ResMed
At ResMed (NYSE: RMD, ASX: RMD) we pioneer innovative solutions that treat and keep people out of the hospital, empowering them to live healthier, higher-quality lives. Our digital health technologies” and cloud-connected medical devices transform care for people with sleep apnea, COPD, and other chronic diseases. Our comprehensive out-of-hospital software platforms support the professionals and caregivers who help people stay healthy in the home or care setting of their choice. By enabling better care, we improve quality of life, reduce the impact of chronic disease, and lower costs for consumers and healthcare systems in more than 140 countries. To learn more, visit ResMed.com and follow @ResMed.

For media For investors
Kristin Deuber Amy Wakeham
+1 614.975.4186 +1 858.836.5000
resmed@allisonpr.com investorrelations@resmed.com

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8786245

Philips appoints Julia Strandberg as Chief Business Leader of the Connected Care businesses

March 13, 2023

Amsterdam, the Netherlands – Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA), a global leader in health technology, today announced the appointment of Julia Strandberg as the Chief Business Leader of its Connected Care businesses, effective April 24, 2023. Ms. Strandberg will become a member of Philips’ Executive Committee reporting to Philips CEO Roy Jakobs. As of April 1, 2023, Philips’ Connected Care businesses will comprise the Monitoring, Sleep & Respiratory Care and Enterprise Informatics businesses.

Ms. Strandberg (American, 1974) joins Philips from Pear Therapeutics, where she served as the Chief Commercial Officer leading the commercial team that built, launched and grew their prescription digital therapeutics offering. Prior to this, Ms. Strandberg led a healthcare business consulting firm focused on driving client growth, and before this, she led Medtronic’s global Health Informatics and Monitoring business, and was the global marketing leader for the Patient Monitoring business within Covidien’s Respiratory & Monitoring group, which was acquired by Medtronic. Ms. Strandberg started her career at 3M, where she worked across a number of roles at the company.

“On behalf of Philips’ Executive Committee, I am delighted to announce that Julia Strandberg will join Philips as our new Chief Business Leader of the Connected Care businesses and member of the Executive Committee,” said Roy Jakobs, CEO of Royal Philips. “Julia brings deep, multi-disciplinary expertise, including in informatics and monitoring, to Philips. Passionate about improving the healthcare experience for patients and providers across care settings, Julia understands how to deliver in the global healthcare ecosystem and adds extensive experience in developing and commercializing medical technologies.”

Ms. Strandberg succeeds Dan Leonard, who took on the role of Chief Business Leader Connected Care ad interim when Roy Jakobs became CEO in October, 2022.

Philips’ strong brand and compelling purpose appeal to and attract talent, and the company has therefore continued to strengthen the organization with new health technology talent, including seasoned leaders with deep expertise. Ms. Strandberg ’s appointment to Philips’ Executive Committee builds on the recent appointments of Wim Appelo as Philips’ Chief Operations Officer and Steve C. de Baca as Philips’ Chief Patient Safety & Quality Officer, as well as the promotion of Jeff DiLullo to Philips’ Chief Market Leader of North America.

Additional information on Philips’ Executive Committee can be found here.

For further information, please contact:

Ben Zwirs
Philips Global Press Office
Tel.: +31 615213446
E-mail: ben.zwirs@philips.com

Derya Guzel
Philips Investor Relations
Tel.: +31 20 59 77055
E-mail: derya.guzel@philips.com

About Royal Philips
Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a leading health technology company focused on improving people’s health and well-being through meaningful innovation. Philips’ patient- and people-centric innovation leverages advanced technology and deep clinical and consumer insights to deliver personal health solutions for consumers and professional health solutions for healthcare providers and their patients in the hospital and the home. Headquartered in the Netherlands, the company is a leader in diagnostic imaging, ultrasound, image-guided therapy, monitoring and enterprise informatics, as well as in personal health. Philips generated 2022 sales of EUR 17.8 billion and employs approximately 77,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. News about Philips can be found at www.philips.com/newscenter.

Forward-looking statements
This release contains certain forward-looking statements with respect to the financial condition, results of operations and business of Philips and certain of the plans and objectives of Philips with respect to these items. Examples of forward-looking statements include statements made about the strategy, estimates of sales growth, future EBITA, future developments in Philips’ organic business and the completion of acquisitions and divestments. By their nature, these statements involve risk and uncertainty because they relate to future events and circumstances and there are many factors that could cause actual results and developments to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these statements.


GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 1000797685

AFM has initiated an investigation into irregularities in trading of Azerion shares

Amsterdam, 13 March 2023 – Today Azerion has announced an investigation by the Autoriteit Financiële Markten (AFM), which according to AFM-information known to the Company, appears to be related to compliance with article 15 of the Market Abuse Regulation and seems to be focused on the shareholders of Principion Holding B.V., including Azerion co-CEOs Atilla Aytekin and Umut Akpinar. Principion is Azerion’s largest shareholder.

Based on the information available and the information provided by co-CEO Atilla Aytekin, he decided, in close consultation with the Supervisory Board, that the interests of the Company and its stakeholders are best served by him temporarily stepping aside at this moment in time from his duties and responsibilities as co-CEO of the Company.

The operational leadership of the Company remains with Azerion’s Executive Committee and broader leadership team, with Umut Akpinar as CEO and Ben Davey as CFO. This is a continuation of the current day-to-day practice for organic and inorganic activities. The team remains focused on fulfilling Azerion’s strategy and dedicated execution of the business plan.

The AFM approached Azerion on Tuesday 7 March 2023 to obtain information. The Company is fully available to answer any questions of the AFM.

The Supervisory Board has installed a Special Committee to steer the process and to be kept fully informed.

The Company is limited in its possibilities to provide further information pending the investigation, and will share information if and when appropriate.

About Azerion
Azerion is a high-growth digital entertainment and media platform. As a content-driven, technology and data company, Azerion serves consumers, digital publishers, advertisers, and game creators globally. Azerion’s integrated platform provides technology solutions to automate the purchase and sale of digital advertising for media buyers and sellers, supported by in-market sales and campaign management teams. Through our technology, content creators, digital publishers and advertisers work with Azerion to reach the millions of people across the globe that play Azerion’s games and view its distributed entertainment content to increase engagement, loyalty, and drive e-commerce.

Founded in 2014 by two Dutch entrepreneurs, Azerion has experienced rapid expansion driven by organic growth and strategic acquisitions. Azerion is headquartered in Amsterdam, the Netherlands and is a publicly traded company listed on Euronext Amsterdam.

This press release contains information that qualifies as inside information within the meaning of Article 7(1) of the EU Market Abuse Regulation.

For more information visit: www.azerion.com

Investor Relations



The companies in which Azerion Group N.V. directly and indirectly owns investments are separate legal entities. In this announcement “Azerion”, “Azerion Group”, “Company” and “Group” are sometimes used for convenience where references are made to Azerion Group N.V. and its subsidiaries in general. Likewise, the words “we”, “us” and “our” are also used to refer to Azerion Group N.V. and its subsidiaries in general or to those who work for them.

This press release is for information purposes only. The information contained in this press release does not purport to be full or complete and, in particular, is not intended to form the basis of any investment decision. No reliance may be placed by any person for any purpose on the information contained in this press release or its accuracy, fairness or completeness. Azerion will not be held liable for any loss or damages of any nature ensuing from using, trusting or acting on information provided.

This press release may include forward-looking statements. All statements other than statements of historical facts may be forward-looking statements. Words and expressions such as believes, estimates, plans, projects, anticipates, expects, intends, may, will, should or other similar words or expressions are typically used to identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors that are difficult to predict and that may cause the actual results of Azerion to differ materially from future results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Any forward-looking statements reflect Azerion’s current views and assumptions based on information currently available to Azerion’s management. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and Azerion does not assume any obligation to update such statements, except as required by law. No assurances can be given that the forward-looking statements will be realised. No representation or warranty is made that any of these forward-looking statements will come to pass or that any estimated result will be achieved. Accordingly, no undue reliance should be placed on any forward-looking statements.

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 1000797634

Xi’s Consolidation of Power Equals Suppression in China, Conflicts Abroad, Analysts Say

Chinese President Xi Jinping’s latest move to bolster the power of the Communist Party and tighten its grip on society is a manifestation of the Communist ideology and will likely result in increased suppression at home and intensified conflicts with the West, according to analysts.

The annual national parliamentary session, which ended Monday, endorsed reforms that would boost the party’s control over state institutions.

The National People’s Congress on Friday approved a plan to reorganize central government institutions under the State Council, or Cabinet, including the formation of a financial regulatory body, a national data bureau and a revamp of its science and technology ministry. The party’s institutional reform plan was due out after the end of the parliamentary session Monday.

Since Xi came to power, he has headed two rounds of reforms – in 2013 and 2018 – setting up party groups to oversee policy changes in law and order, foreign affairs, finance and security.

Over the past 10 years, the Communist Party has moved from collective leadership with the general secretary, considered first among equals on the elite Politburo Standing Committee — a practice established in the “reform and opening” era after the Cultural Revolution — to Xi’s supreme leadership, analysts say.

In 2018, Chinese lawmakers amended the constitution abolishing presidential term limits – paving the way for Xi to rule for life. In a further move to assert his authority, the party pledged to uphold the “Two Establishes,” party-speak for loyalty to him, in a historical resolution passed in 2021.

Analysts say Xi’s reforms are the opposite of the “reform and opening” policy launched by paramount leader Deng Xiaoping in 1978, to diminish the party’s role in the government. They say Xi’s agenda would give major power to the party to set policy, while the State Council and its government ministries would merely see that the policies were implemented.

“Xi thinks he is the 21st century Mao. He feels so firm in his socialism faith and is the only one who could achieve so much,” said Willy Lam, senior fellow at the Washington-based Jamestown Foundation.

Chen Daoyin, a former associate professor at Shanghai University of Political Science and Law, says Xi’s preference for “jizhong liliang bandashi (concentrating on big things)” has its origin in Marxism-Leninism.

“It is the Communist Party’s nature to control. They only share power when they have no choice,” Chen said, adding that Lenin’s view of “party building” was that power should be firmly in the hands of the leaders.

Since Xi took power, he saw upholding the Communist Party’s one-party rule as his historical mission, having said in an internal speech in 2012 that when the Soviet Union collapsed, “Nobody was man enough to stand up and resist.”

“He is determined to become this man who ‘saves the party and the nation,’” Chen said. “Following this logic, he needs to grab power in the party, government, military, police and ideology to rejuvenate the country.”

And in the party’s eyes, the emergence of a civil society and business class is a threat to its rule, says Chen.

Chinese authorities have not only decimated China’s fledgling civil society in a series of crackdowns on human rights lawyers, liberal scholars, journalists, NGO workers and unofficial churches, but in recent years, they have also targeted technology companies such as Tencent and Alibaba and their bosses.

“People’s awareness of rights has awakened, and they want to get involved in public policymaking,” Chen said. “So, the party believes it must implement control, so they won’t demand power sharing anymore.”

Professor Chung Kim-wah, a social scientist formerly with the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, said Xi’s reversal of Deng’s reform agenda, his cult of personality and attacks on speech and civil freedoms, have alienated China from the international community.

“People had once hoped that economic reform would lead to changes… I should think nobody harbors this illusion anymore,” he said.

Lam believes China’s growing friction with the United States over trade and technology as well as Taiwan, the South China Sea and Ukraine issues, will mean that its economy will not rebound easily from the stagnation brought on by three years of a “zero COVID” policy.

“Xi won’t budge, so the problems will become more severe,” Lam said. “There is no way to bring about a reconciliation. The differences are too fundamental.”

Domestically, Xi’s consolidation of power will also augur more troubles ahead, analysts say.

In the absence of democratic elections, the Chinese Communist Party’s legitimacy depends on economic performance and nationalism, but with the economic slump and widespread discontent over the draconian COVID-19 restrictions, “the party’s legitimacy is wearing thin,” Lam said.

In late November, the stringent COVID measures sparked protests across China and escalated into a call for more freedoms. Elderly Chinese also protested in recent weeks against cuts to medical benefits. Although the unrest was quickly quashed, the frustrations are expected to grow. Xi’s consolidation of power could escalate suppression. Lam says authorities could increase social control and thwart potential unrest more effectively with the help of information gathered by the newly established data bureau.

Chung said Xi’s centralization of power would impact international politics and the economy.

“To a certain extent, I feel the Cold War has returned. This further consolidation [of] power makes the whole process harder to turn around. Would China take more military risks to defend itself?” Chung asked.

Li Shaomin, a professor at Old Dominion University in Virginia, said it is important to remember that the Chinese Communist Party has never abandoned one-party dictatorship.

“Now China has national strength, it feels it can implement absolute power. It can brandish its sword in front of the world,” Li told a VOA Chinese language current affairs program.

Chen warned the lack of checks on power means huge mistakes can be easily made, and given China’s connection with the world, the consequences could have a tremendous impact. He cited the example of how the authorities’ suppression of news of the emergence of COVID three years ago led to its rapid spread around the world.

“This could lead to a disaster, and this is the dreadful thing about the concentration of power,” Chen said.

Source: VOA

Two people arrested in connection with shooting in Baku

The Prosecutor General’s Office and the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Azerbaijan have released joint information in connection with the armed incident that took place on March 10 on Samad Vurghun Street in the Nasimi district of Baku, Trend reports.

According to the information, the criminal case opened in connection with the incident is being investigated by the Prosecutor General’s Office.

Following the activities carried out by the prosecutor’s office and employees of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, reasonable suspicions were revealed that Shahmar Ismayilov, born in 1995, and Vugar Guliyev, born in 1998, who had previously colluded with other persons, opened fire from illegally acquired firearms in order to kill Nijat Akbarov due to personal animosity.

The shooters missed Akbarov, while Tamerlan Huseynov, born in 1983, and Fagan Rahimli, born in 2002, who were at the scene, received injuries of varying severity.

Ismayilov and Guliyev, who were detained as suspects as a result of investigative and operational measures, were charged under Articles 29, 120.2.1, 29, 120.2.4 (murder attempt in a generally dangerous way by a group of persons by prior conspiracy), 228.2.1 (illegal acquisition of firearms) and other articles of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Azerbaijan.

On the basis of a court decision, a measure of restraint in the form of arrest was chosen against them.

When examining the scene and the car driven by one of the suspects in the crime, one pistol, cartridges and shells, as well as other evidence of importance to the case, were found and seized.

Investigative and operational-search activities in the criminal case are ongoing, and further information will be published.

Source: Trend News Agency

Macron wages covert war against Corsicans

The French authorities have long been demonstrating a biased stance toward Azerbaijan. The Senate and the National Assembly have repeatedly adopted anti-Azerbaijani resolutions. Meanwhile, French MPs have been the major initiators of the resolutions adopted in the European Parliament against Azerbaijan. The country’s politicians, led by French President Emmanuel Macron, make harsh remarks against Baku, and the French media periodically publish anti-Azerbaijani articles commissioned by the Macron government. The public structures of France act more as representatives of the Armenians, rather than their own citizens.

Following the theses sent by Macron, French officials, the country’s legislative body, and the media declare that Azerbaijan “doesn’t respect the Armenian people and the Armenian language”, “doesn’t ensure the rights of the Karabakh Armenians”, try to give a false appearance that Azerbaijan allegedly “committed” or “plans to commit” the “genocide” of the Armenian inhabitants of Karabakh. No fact is presented in this case.

Unlike Baku, Paris is currently engaged in erasing the culture and language of one people from history under non-combat conditions.

Thus, the court of Corsica has recently issued a ruling that suspended the use of Corsican in public institutions on the island, citing the lack of legal framework for the language following Article 2 of the French Constitution. This language will no longer be used during debates in the Corsican Assembly. This decision further aggravated relations between Paris and the Corsican activists. Both locals and influential Corsican politicians are protesting against the decision to use only French on the island. They argue that such a decision by the central government is discriminatory and violates international law. President Macron has repeatedly stated that Corsica must always obey Paris, there can be no question of independence.

As one can see, ethnic and cultural terrorism against the Corsicans in France is carried out at the state level. Macron launched an undeclared war against the Corsicans. Paris doesn’t take into account the rights of Corsicans within the country but interferes in the internal affairs of Azerbaijan, located thousands of kilometers from France. What kind of values can the French authorities bring to the world by banning the use of a language spoken by over 150,000 people within the country? Naturally, none…

France, violating international conventions, restricts the rights of Corsicans, forbidding them even to speak their native language. In contrast to such far from democratic behavior of Paris, Azerbaijan treats all the people living on its territory equally. The country respects their cultural rights, and the right to speak their native language. And France should learn a lot from Azerbaijan in the issue of ensuring the rights of ethnic groups.

Source: Trend News Agency

Now target is to work more on diversification of our economy – President Ilham Aliyev

Last 20 years was the years of rapid economic growth, mainly driven by energy sector. Now the target is to work more on diversification of our economy, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said at a meeting with heads of Germany’s leading companies in Berlin, Trend reports.

“Because with respect to the structure of GDP, most part of the GDP is now produced in non-energy sector. But still, our export mainly is oil and gas,” President Ilham Aliyev emphasized.

Source: Trend News Agency