Stories from 4 January 2009
Samuel Gebru reports that opposition leader Birtukan Medeksa faces life imprisonment for denying that she apologized to the Government for her role in the 2005 unrest. Mamá Etiopía [Es] reports that she's already in jail, the same one as singer Teddy Afro, and describes her as an “Ethiopian Obama”.
Morgan in Rwanda debunks the popular myth amongst expats living in Rwanda that Rwandese are not hospitable and don't invite people over for dinner. She concludes: “knowing how to communicate in the local language is really the only way to learn about a culture beyond the obvious”.
P3jessca5 of Leemu Haari, a Peace Corps volunteer in Niger, reflects on tolerance in her host country by sharing a few stories of encounters with mentally ill people and how others around her reacted to them.
Israeli ground troops have moved further into the Gaza Strip, and naval, air and land bombardment has continued. These are some of the blog posts that have come out of Gaza in the last 24 hours.
Pitso Gauteng of Thinking Aloud reflects on the main events of 2008 in South Africa, and adds a note about the rest of Africa as well.
Hope of This is Zimbabwe shares a recent story in which a little girl was begging drivers to help her take her grandmother to the hospital, and she makes a promise for 2009: not to give up.
Le blog de Yoro [Fr] shows a picture of a news stand in Abidjan, wondering why pornographic publications are displayed so prominently.
Several Latin American bloggers are watching the events unfold in Gaza and they often feel helpless. They use their blogs to demand peace in the region. However, they also feel that after these bombings that achieving peace in the Middle East is now even further away.
Haitian blogger J’ai découvert [Fr] writes about celebrating the Epiphany in Port-au-Prince. “The holiday still remains controversial in Haiti for the country's three most popular religions (Protestantism, Catholicism, and Voodism).”
Photo This & That, the blog of British photographer Edmond Terakopian, posts photographs of yesterday's protest against Israeli military action in Gaza. In a second post, the established and award-winning news photographer of ethnic Armenian descent takes exception to police handling of the demo.
Another year has passed since the 1994 ceasefire put the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno Karabakh on hold, but a lasting peace remains elusive. However, both countries continue to accuse the other of destroying cultural and historical monuments. But, while the issue of the destruction of an ancient Armenian cemetery in the exclave of Nakhichevan is frequently raised, less is known about the cultural loss suffered by Azerbaijan.
Thoughts On The Road returns to Baku, capital of the Republic of Azerbaijan, and recounts a conversation with a local taxi driver on the Nagorno Karabakh conflict. The blog reflects on the effect war has on the human consciousness.
The world has come out in support of Gaza. Hundreds of thousands of people have turned up at rallies and demonstrations over the past five days, which have spanned the globe. From Boston to Beirut, Cape Town to Caracas, citizens have shown their solidarity and support for Gaza. Jillian York zooms in on Flickr for some photo action.
Via Tzitzernak2, a blog has been established dealing with fugitive newspaper editor and opposition activist, Nikol Pashinyan. Currently on the run from the authorities following the 1 March post-presidential election clashes in Yerevan, Armenia, the blog, Nikol Pashinyan, is in Armenian.
Grigory Pasko of Robert Amsterdam presents his views of Russia's Public Chamber as an incompetent replacement of civil society and argues why he thinks so.
Steve LeVine of The Oil and the Glory explains some aspects of the ongoing Russian-Ukrainian gas crisis from the perspective of international energy pricing.
Lituanica quotes and discusses allegations by Baltic media that France would have put pressure on Lithuania by way of the European Union for the closure of the country's Ignalina nuclear power plant. The suggested reason would be France's interest in supporting its own nuclear industry.
Raf Uzar picks out his choice of Poland's top five politicians in 2008 and tells his readers why.
As the country prepared to see in the New Year, Azerbaijan's National Council for Television and Radio banned international radio stations from broadcasting on national frequencies. The decision was effective from 1 January 2009 and affected three radio stations broadcasting on the FM frequency. In a region where tight government control defines the media, the ban was seen by some as an attack on the last remnants of free speech in Azerbaijan.
Gabriela Zabo and Raquel Recuero invite all Twitter users in Brazil to answer 35 questions regarding the Brazilian appropriation of the tool. “We would really appreciate if you also spread the word to your contacts. The more answers, the more reliable the analysis of the use of Twitter by Brazilians...
Lituanica comments on the appointment of Lithuania's first female defence minister and posts a translation of a TV-interview with her on major defence issues.