Bluestar continues fleet upgrade with more Enviro400s

first_imgGo-Ahead Group subsidiary Bluestar has taken to 111 the number of new buses added to its fleet over the last five years with the addition of three more Alexander Dennis Enviro400s.They were unveiled by Managing Director Andrew Wickham and Southampton City Councillor Steve Leggett, Cabinet Member for Green City and Place.The three latest Enviro400s represent a spend of over £500,000 by Bluestar, an outgoing that was made prior to the onset of the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.Mr Wickham (pictured, left) notes that government-imposed movement restrictions led to a great reduction in congestion in Southampton. That is something that the bus industry should build on with high-quality services and vehicles, he says.The new buses continue a Go South Coast group trend of specifying high-quality seating. They also come with the customary tables on the upper deck. USB charging points are fitted.Says Mr Leggett (pictured, right): “We welcome Bluestar’s backing as we partner to support the city’s post-coronavirus COVID-19 economic recovery. Bluestar’s investment in a comfortable, low-emission fleet of buses demonstrates its commitment both to the long-term transport needs of Southampton residents and key workers, and to our vision of a cleaner, healthier city.”last_img read more

Hungary lashes out at Soros with poster campaign

first_imgThe Hungarian government launched a poster campaign vilifying the billionaire George Soros.Large posters of the philanthropist appeared all over Hungary in recent days. Soros is depicted smiling, with the text “Let’s not allow Soros to have the last laugh” beside his head. The top of the poster states “99 percent reject illegal immigration.” The government spent an estimated 5.7 billion forints (€19 million) on the campaign.Some posters were placed on tram floors so travelers would walk on the image of Soros’ face. Hours later, Israel’s foreign ministry issued a statement critical of Soros. “In no way was the statement by the ambassador meant to delegitimize criticism of George Soros, who continuously undermines Israel’s democratically elected governments by funding organizations that defame the Jewish state and seek to deny it the right to defend itself.”The campaign comes ahead of a visit to Budapest by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Some local media in Israel reported that Netanyahu’s office may have been involved in the issuing the foreign ministry statement. The leader of Israel’s left-wing Meretz party, Zeheva Gal-On, accused Netanyahu of “supporting world antisemitism” in response to the statement.On Tuesday, a spokesman for Soros said the national campaign was “reminiscent of Europe’s darkest hours.”Spokesperson Michael Vachon denounced the campaign as “anti-European” and said Orbán’s statements that Soros supported millions of people moving to Europe was a “fantasy.”“The Hungarian regime’s xenophobia and demonization of refugees are anti-European,” said Vachon. “Soros’ actual position on migration is that the international community should provide more support to the developing countries that today host 89 percent of refugees and that Europe should accept several hundred thousand fully screened refugees through an orderly process of vetting and resettlement.”The Hungarian government has previously put up posters warning migrants not to take the jobs off Hungarians, and others that stated the 2015 Paris terror attacks were carried out by migrants. Prime Minister Victor Orbán and Soros have been increasingly at odds, including over migration. In a 2016 article, Soros called for Europe to accept 300,000 refugees, while Orbán has rejected EU migrant policy, wanting to keep his borders closed. When the European Parliament issued a resolution condemning the country for the “serious deterioration” in the rule of law and fundamental rights in May, Hungary’s foreign minister, Peter Szijjarto, said it was a “new attack on Hungary by George Soros’ network.”In April, the Hungarian government passed a bill that would close the Soros-founded Central European University, sparking mass protests in Budapest. Hungary also approved an anti-foreign NGO law in June.Jewish groups in Hungary expressed concern that the poster campaign furthers anti-Semitism. Soros is Jewish.Andras Heisler, leader of Hungary’s Jewish community, asked Orbán not to run the campaign, appealing for him to end the “bad dream” of anti-Semitism. Orbán rejected the request.Many posters were defaced with anti-Semitic graffiti, with the words “stinking Jew” written on one in magic marker.Israel’s ambassador to Hungary, Yossi Amrani, condemned the campaign on Saturday, saying it “evokes sad memories but also sows hatred and fear.”last_img read more