January 13, 2010 1 Comment
December 29, 2009 Leave a comment
Mordechai Vanunu, who served 18 years in prison after he revealed Israel’s secret nuclear programme, has been placed under house arrest pending criminal charges for allegedly breaching the terms of his 2004 release, which includes a ban on contacts with foreigners.
A police spokesman, Micky Rosenfeld, said Vanunu was accused of meeting with “a number of foreigners”. The spokesman, however, did not specify who the foreigners were or where they came from. Read more of this post
November 27, 2009 Leave a comment
Iran has confiscated the Nobel peace medal and diploma of Shirin Ebadi, the human rights lawyer who is one of the hardline regime’s most outspoken critics. Her bank account has also been frozen on the pretext that she owes almost £250,000 in tax.
The seizure of the award, unprecedented in its 108-year history, caused outrage in Oslo, where the Nobel Peace Committee is based. The Norwegian Government summoned the Iranian envoy to protest, and the committee said that it would make a formal complaint.
“Such an act leaves us feeling shock and disbelief,” said Jonas Gahr Støre, the Norwegian Foreign Minister. Read more of this post
October 16, 2009 3 Comments
Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding said the country’s parliament would not recognize same-sex marriage while he was in power.
“I make no apology in saying decisively and emphatically that the government of Jamaica remains irrevocably opposed to the recognition, legitimization or acceptance of same-sex marriages or same-sex unions,” Golding said on Tuesday.
The prime minister was opening parliamentary debate on a major proposed amendment to the constitution which would lay out the scope of rights and freedoms for Jamaicans. Read more of this post
September 14, 2009 1 Comment
Five black fire safety directors of West Indian descent sued Bank of America Corp’s Merrill Lynch unit on Friday, accusing it of discrimination on the basis of race and national origin, leading to their 2005 firings.
In a complaint filed in Manhattan federal court, the men said they had worked for six to 17 years at Merrill’s headquarters at the World Financial Center in New York, under contract with American Building Maintenance Inc but “ultimately” under Merrill’s supervision and control. ABM is also a defendant.
The men said that after the September 11, 2001, attacks, Merrill employees made derogatory comments about their Caribbean accents, though they were native English speakers, and ordered them to attend an “English for Professionals Pronunciation Workshop” at nearby Pace University. Read more of this post
December 29, 2008 Leave a comment
Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe is “a mad dictator” who has lost all sense of reality, a United Nations human rights expert said on Monday [22/12/08].
The only way Mugabe can be removed from power is for Europe to convince his “great protector South Africa” to withdraw all support for him, Jean Ziegler, an adviser to the UN’s Human Rights Council, told Swiss Radio. Mugabe, Ziegler declared, “is a former hero of the liberation struggle who has lost all sense of reality…. and become a mad dictator.” He added: “The horror in Zimbabwe today is absolutely intolerable.”
The comments from the Swiss sociologist, who has little sympathy for the Western countries most critical of Mugabe, reflected the despair over Zimbabwe on the rights council.Four other UN rights experts said Zimbabwe could not control a cholera epidemic that has killed more than 1 100 people.
The four – who report to the Human Rights Council on food, health, drinking water and the situation of rights defenders – said Mugabe’s “violations of civil and political rights” made it difficult to get a united response to the crisis.
But the comments from Ziegler, long associated with left-wing causes and development issues and who has good contacts among African leaders and diplomats, were seen as a sign of the wider gloom over Zimbabwe. While most African governments have been pressing for the formation of a unity government between Mugabe’s ruling ZANU-PF party and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), Ziegler said power should go to the MDC.
“After all, they won the elections,” he said, referring to a presidential vote earlier in 2008. Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai won the first round but then pulled out of the run-off after a wave of violence against his supporters.
Ziegler, whose new book “The Hatred of the West” on attitudes in the developing world, has become a best-seller in France and other French-speaking countries, said UN military action to remove Mugabe was prevente by Russia and China. These two, he argued, would veto any move in the Security Council to despatch UN forces to protect the Zimbabwean people, unless such action was supported by the African Union and above all by South Africa.
South Africa had strong historic links with Mugabe, who provided support during the struggle against apartheid, but was “a deeply civilised country” that would be open to real dialogue with the European Union on the issue, Ziegler said.
“Europe should call on South Africa to abandon its support for this mad dictator so as to open the way to a government of the opposition, which won the elections,” he declared.
In other related news
Businessmen who have been accused by the US Treasury of financially supporting Robert Mugabe were operating freely in Britain, the London Times reported on Monday [22/12/08].
This was in spite of UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s declaration that “enough is enough” in Zimbabwe, the newspaper said. Of 21 companies put on a US blacklist by President George W Bush last month, 14 are based in Britain, two in the Isle of Man, one in Jersey and one in the British Virgin Islands.
The other three are based in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Florida and Zimbabwe itself, the Times said. Top of the list of alleged Mugabe pals now under sanction by the US Treasury is the British-based businessman John Bredenkamp.
“Mr Mugabe and his henchmen use a number of ploys to stay in power and live in luxury as their countrymen suffer.
“In this they are said to receive the help of white businessmen, several with British passports, and a number of London-based companies,” the Times said.
It added that Britain had failed to take action against individuals and companies while calling for Mugabe to go.
“By contrast, the US Treasury last month named four financier ‘cronies’ – Mr Bredenkamp, Muller Conrad “Billy” Rautenbach, Nalinee Joy Taveesin and Mahmood Awang Kechik – of Mr Mugabe and put them on a blacklist, freezing their US assets and banning American citizens from doing business with them.”
According to the Times, Bredenkamp has been granted indefinite leave to remain in Britain, and operated some of his businesses from an office in Berkshire
Source: Independent Online SA
July 29, 2008 1 Comment
As athletes, officials and journalists begin pouring into Beijing to prepared for the 2008 Summer Olympics games [which will also be held in six other hosts cities], China police continued their massive crackdown on any and everyone considered hostile and who poses any serious threat or embassrement for China.
From websites to chat rooms, from blogs to video-sharing sites, Chinese authorities are cracking down on persons who dare to pass on information to foreign journalists or post incriminating evidence on weblogs. Such persons are sometimes charged with defamation or divulging state secrets laws or keep under house arrest. Chinese authorities have deployed 100,000 police, 200,000 security guards and neighbour committees to spy on their neighbours for the Chinese Communists Party in an effort to monitor and silence activists who regularly highlight human rights issues or report on forbidden news not reveal by the official news agency Xinhua.
The Reporters Without Borders who are advocates against the Olympic Games being awarded to Beijing in 2001, lists nine things on its website that Chinese authorities must do before the Beijing Olympics Games. These includes
- Releasing all journalists and Internet users detained in China for exercising their right to information.
- Ending the jamming of foreign radio stations.
- Ending the blocking of thousands of news and information websites based aboard
- Lifting the ban on Chinese media using foreign news agency video footage and news reports without permission
- Suspend the policy dubbed “11 Commandments of the Internet” which covers ontent censorship and self-censorship on websites.
As of now it is still impossible for the international media to employ Chinese journalists as part of its reporting base.
- Chinese Dissidents Watched, Arrested As Games Near
- Repression Continues In China, One Month Before Olympic Games
- Dog Gone But What About De Donkey
- 14 Millions Stolen And Lost Travel Dociuments May Be used By Terriorists To Disrupt Olympic Games!!!
- UPDATED – Sabotage Of Beijing Games? – Kidnapping And Sucide Attacks – What’s Next!!!!!!
- Choas Surrounds The Olympic Torch Relay But The Games Are Still On
- Boycotting Of Olympic Opening Ceremony Gaining Momentum
- Lighting Of Olympic Flame Today
June 30, 2008 1 Comment
President George W. Bush called Saturday for an international arms embargo against Zimbabwe in the wake of last week’s “sham election,” and announced that the United States is drafting new economic sanctions that, for the first time, would take aim at the entire government of President Robert Mugabe.
Robert Mugabe, who recently declared that “only God” could remove him from power, have now given himself another – sixth – term in office winning by 85.51% of the total vote cast. Morgan Tsvangirai trailed behind with 9.3 percent of the total vote.
Tsvangirai, who had been expected to pit against ruling Zanu PF candidate and incumbent President Mugabe in the run-off election, withdrew last Sunday, citing various reasons, including increasing political violence and intimidation against the opposition MDC-T.
At his inauguration in Harare on Sunday, the hero of Zimbabwe’s liberation struggle, knows he is facing growing international opprobrium, stricter sanctions, and even calls for armed peacekeepers to be sent to Zimbabwe.
“I think,” said Archbishop Desmond Tutu, “that a very good argument can be made for having an international force to restore peace.”
The call for an international arms embargo, which Bush coupled with a proposed ban on travel by officials of the Mugabe government, is unlikely to be successful. American officials said it would almost certainly run into opposition at the United Nations from South Africa, Russia and China; South Africa’s position has long been that the Zimbabwe election is an internal affair.
Adapted from International Press Reports
- Mugabe Given 24 Hour Deadline By Tsvangirai
- Did The ‘An Yue Jiang’ Delivered Its Arm Shipment To Zimbabwe?
- Weapons For Zimbabwe May Return To China
- UPDATED – Chinese Arms Ship Destined For Mugabe Regime – Document Issued 3Days After Zimbabwe Elections!!!
- UPDATED – Mugabe: It Isn’t Over Until I Say So
May 31, 2008 2 Comments
A couple of weeks ago there was an international uproar surrounding a Chinese ship the An Yue Jiang, carrying weapons of mass destruction umm sorry, ammunition which included assault rifles, mortar rounds and rocket propelled grenades destined for Mugabe’s government.
Such controversy surrounded the vessel that it never got it cargo off loaded at the South African port of Durban where it would have been transported overland to Zimbawe. Last we heard it was sailing back to China.
Or did it? Read more of this post
April 25, 2008 Leave a comment
With 14m stolen and lost travel documents in its database, Interpol will work with Chinese authories to implement a system for conducting checks at Beijing’s airport and other major border entries to prevent dangerous elements from entering China.
Head of Interpol Ronald Noble has warned that there is a “real possibility that the Beijing Olympics will be attacked by terrorists. He said security services in Beijing must be prepared “for the possibility that al-Qaeda or some other terriorist group will attempt to launch a deadly terrorist attack at these Olympics”.
He added that “These activities could range from disruptive behavior, like blocking major transportation routes or infrastructure or interfering with competitions, to more violent acts like assaulting Olympic officials or athletes or destroying property.”
Chinese officials have said that terrorism is the biggest threat to the August Olympic Games and have called for closer international co-operation to prevent possible incidents.
See previous articles – UPDATED – Sabotage Of Beijing Games? – Kidnapping And Suicide Attacks – What’s Next?
[Adapted from International Press Reports]
April 23, 2008 4 Comments
Last week we posted an article on a Chinese arms ship destined to Zimbabwe loaded with 77 tonnes of ammunition which included AK47′s and grenades. The ship was subsequently bar by a judge from unloading the weapons at the South African port of Durban to cross the country to landlocked Zimbabwe. The ship went on to sail to try its luck at other Southern Africa ports.
Now it looks like the vessel, the An Yue Jiang may have no choice but to return to its origins with its shipment of weapons. That’s because Mozambique, Angola and Namibia under international pressure and lead by the Bush administration have also denied access to the ship docking and unloading at their ports in case they risk hurting relations with the US.
China insisted that the shipment of mortar grenades, ammunition and other weapons was part of “normal military product trade between the two countries.”
“As far as I know, the carrier is now considering carrying back the cargo.” China Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said.
The spokeswoman added that the shipment was signed last year and was “unrelated to recent developments” in Zimbabwe.
“I have nothing against the Chinese, but I do have something against the way they are arming the regime in Zimbabwe with war weapons with which our people will be repressed,” MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai told Germany’s Deutschlandfunk radio.
China is under an international spotlight over its human rights record and rule in Tibet ahead of hosting the Olympics games in August. Violent protests have followed the Olympic torch across the globe.
Mugabe is under heavy international pressure to release the results of rh presidential elections, which the opposition Movement fo Democratic Change [MDC] say it was ending the vetern leader’s long rule.
Meanwhile Mr Mugabe’s Deputy Information Minister Bright Matongo said his country had the right to acquire arms from legitimate source, stating that Zimbabwe was not a rebel country.
See previous article – UPDATED – Chinese Arms Ship Destined For Mugabe Regime – Documents Issued 3 Days After Zimbabwe Elections!!!
[Adapted from International Press Reports]
UPDATED – Chinese Arms Ship Destined For Mugabe Regime – Document Issued 3 Days After Zimbabwe Elections!!!
April 19, 2008 2 Comments
April 11, 2008 Leave a comment