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· February, 2012

Stories about Freedom of Speech from February, 2012

Cuba: Worry about Hunger Striker

  29 February 2012

Uncommon Sense hopes that political prisoner Ernesto Borges’ fate will not go the way of so many other hunger strikers, saying: “He needs you to learn his story and to spread it so that his life can be saved.”

Trinidad & Tobago: Battle with Media

  29 February 2012

Afra Raymond outlines what he believes is a “sinister pattern” towards the media in Trinidad & Tobago, since the People's Partnership has been in government. According to Raymond, who elaborated on his views in an accompanying webcast, “…given the boundless nature of the new technology, we are going to see...

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Video Highlights: Defending Human Rights

  28 February 2012

A selection of Global Voices' recent and interesting stories on video advocacy including indigenous rights and recent news from Latin America, East Asia, Western Europe and Sub Saharan Africa selected by Juliana Rincón Parra.

Cuba: Dialogue with the Opposition?

  28 February 2012

“It might be paranoia. In totalitarian states, suspicion and the absurd become habit. But it isn’t insane to think that to give the dissidents a space if circumstances force their hand, could become a part of the island’s mandarin’s calculus”: Iván's File Cabinet puts forward a compelling theory.

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Pakistan: Fighting the Great Firewall

  28 February 2012

The recent blow to the internet freedom in Pakistan has been the announcement of a request for proposal (RFP) for national “URL filtering and blocking system” by the ICT R&D Fund under the Ministry of Information Technology (MoIT). The $10 million system is required to be able to ”handle a block list of up to 50 million URLs".

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Bahrain: #Hungry4BH Trends Worldwide

  27 February 2012

Bahraini netizens, backed by the international community, helped raise the voices of detained political activists on hunger strike, by making their plight a trending topic on Twitter. Mona Kareem reports on the efforts of activists online and on the ground in Bahrain.

Cuba: Working for “The Enemy”?

  27 February 2012

Havana Times reports that “the leading Cuban government website…unleashed a front page attack on blogger Yoani Sanchez…with an article accusing her of working for the enemy (USA) for pay”; Sanchez herself sees a news report “in which the blogger Miriam Celaya and other acquaintances appear, surrounded with epithets such as...

Cuba: More Sunday Detentions

  27 February 2012

Uncommon Sense blogs about yet another Sunday of repression as members of Las Damas de Blanco were again detained by authorities.

Latvia: Flagging for Free Speech

  27 February 2012

Juris Kaža of Free Speech Emergency in Latvia reports that Latvian security police has closed an investigation into an Internet call to desecrate the Latvian flag, which is illegal in the country. The case was closed as there was no evidence of any victim of flag burning.

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Portugal: Web Users Debate Portuguese Private Copying Bill

  27 February 2012

Currently being debated in the Portuguese Parliament is a new bill (PL118) which proposes a tax on any equipment or software capable of recording, copying or storing analogue or digital content, in the name of author's rights. The online community has wasted no time in wading in on the debate, with the hashtag #PL118 duly trending on Twitter.

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Russia: The “Big White Circle” Protest in Moscow

RuNet Echo  27 February 2012

On Sunday, Feb. 26, thousands of people gathered in central Moscow for the Big White Circle protest, forming a human chain along most of the length of the Russian capital's 15.6-kilometer/9.7-mile Garden Ring, protesting against corruption and demanding a fair presidential election, which is to take place in one week, on March 4.

Cuba: Prisoners’ Rights

  24 February 2012

Uncommon Sense republishes a statement by Amnesty International about “former prisoner of conscience Jose Daniel Ferrer Garcia [whose] whereabouts are unknown following his alleged arrest in central Havana, Cuba, on 21 February”; Pedazos de la Isla, meanwhile, reports that “the political prisoner on hunger strike, Ernesto Borges, was taken from...

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Puerto Rico: Blogosphere Denounces Proposed Cybergag

  24 February 2012

The Puerto Rican blogosphere reacted to a measure undertaken by the mayor of the city of Mayagüez, José Guillermo Rodríguez, that would have been used to investigate and prosecute people who criticize his administration on social networks. Even though the Mayor has since decided not to enforce the resolution, he warned that more regulations will come soon.

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