3 top stories from home and away
By P.M. Fadden
WORLD VIEW – Peace is Possible
In an era primed by strife, the government of African nation South Sudan has shown peace can be possible by reaching a power-sharing agreement with the country’s main rebel group.
The deal, which will see a rebel leader return to power as one of the nation’s five vice-presidents, is aimed at ending a five-year civil war responsible for the killing tens of thousands and displacement of millions.
South Sudan President Salva Kiir and rebellion leader Riek Machar signed the deal in neighboring Sudan. According to BBC World Service, the current accord marks the first success in the wake of several failed attempts at finding a peaceful solution.
NATIONWIDE – Under Siege
U.S.-born actor Steven Seagal, 66, has been appointed special envoy to improving ties between Russia and the United States.
The Russian foreign ministry made the announcement on its official Facebook page saying the unpaid position was similar to that of a United Nations’ goodwill ambassador. Seagal would promote U.S./Russia relations “in the humanitarian sphere.”
Seagal was granted Russian citizenship in 2016 and has praised President Putin as a great world leader reports BBC US & Canada Service.
FRONTIER FOCUS – Clean Up Crack Down
With court order in hand, city contractors are at long last seeking unkempt properties around Anchorage.
Since taking office in 2015, the administration of Mayor Ethan Berkowitz and the Anchorage Assembly have been exercising legal and financial methods to get the owners of abandoned and blighted properties to secure, clean up and fix what they own.
According to ADN, officials say the properties attract crime and drive down the value of neighboring homes.
The new initiative has included court orders, a new pool of cleanup funds and the boarding-up of buildings. City attorneys now explore different aspects of the foreclosure process as a way to apply pressure and also repay city expenses.