Stories from 27 September 2012
Jordan: Inkitab Group to Hold Second Used Book Fair
After the success of their first event, the Inkitab Group which works to promote reading, will hold their second used book fair in the Jordanian capital Amman on October 1, 2012.
Armenia: A New Response to Hate Crime?
Unzipped: Gay Armenia comments on news of an attack on transsexual sex workers in Yerevan, the Armenian capital. The blog notes that not only did the victims report the crime, but that the police formerly accepted it as such while also using ‘acceptable non-discriminatory wording.’ The blog implies that if...
Iran: President Ahmadinejad's Men in Trouble
As President Ahmadinejad addressed the UN General Assembly on September 26, a foreign ministry spokesperson was attacked by protesters in New York and a government press adviser was arrested in Iran.
Spain: Proposed Changes for Abortion Law
The 28th of September is the celebration of the Campaign for the Legalization of Abortion, which has taken place for years in Latin America and the Caribbean and this year will be celebrated all around the world for the first time. The group known as“Feminismos 15M”[es] has chosen this date...
Puerto Rico: Plagiarism Revealed Through the Net
Janet Marilyn Hernández, a Venezuelan blogger and public relations professional, discovered that her thesis was plagiarized in a newspaper article and blog post written by professor Ivan Ríos of the University of Puerto Rico. Using email, posts, Twitter and Facebook she brought the situation to the attention of the University and the mainstream press. The professor has since resigned.
The Slap that Changed China's History
On September 24, the former police chief of Chongqing, Wang Lijun, was sentenced to 15 years in prison on four charges: bending the law for personal interest, defection, abuse of power and corruption. He is at the center of China's biggest political scandal in recent memory, the murder of a British businessman by the wife of Chongqing Communist Party high flier Bo Xilai.
Russia: Yekaterinburg Police Raid Regional Internet Publication
On September 27th Yekaterinburg-based internet news portal URA.ru was raided by city police, reports [ru] Evgeny Roizman, local anti-drug campaigner. Roizman is dating the editor-in-chief of the portal, Aksana Panova, who has apparently managed to leave the country before masked operatives arrived at her apartment and scared her mother and young son [ru]....
Georgia: A Caucasian Abu Ghraib
Eva Anderson, a Senior Analyst with Transparency International, examines the recent prison abuse video scandal in Georgia as the country prepares for crucial 1 October Parliamentary Elections. The blog post in particular looks at the penitentiary system and the urgent need for reform.
Mexico: Writing from Jail
Enrique Aranda Ochoa writes literature from jail. Convicted of kidnapping in 1997 with a sentence of 50 years in prison, Enrique has used his time in jail to write six novels and earn various literature awards. His latest book, available for purchase in an electronic format, focuses on the mysteries of the Mayans.
Chad: Challenges to Freedom of Expression as Social Protests Grow
The recent arrests in Chad of three union officers and the editor of an independent newspaper are symptomatic of a disintegration of freedom of expression in the country. These arrests have come after protest movements against the impoverishment of Chad’s population and the privatization of the country’s resources.
Colombians Cautiously Optimistic About Peace Talks with FARC
The Colombian government is planning its first set of negotiations with FARC in a decade. While many Colombian bloggers welcome this decision, others do not see the negotiations leading to the end of decades of violence and criminal activities.
Spain: Two Journalists on Trial for Revealing Corruption in Catalonia
On September 27, Albano Dante and Marta Sibina, editors of the magazine Cafè amb Llet, will appear in court in Catalonia, Spain. The journalists are being sued for libel by an advisor to the Catalan president after alleging that senior officials are involved in corruption of the health care system.
Jamaica: Storm Saulter on Film & New Media in the Caribbean
The 2012 Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival continues this week and one of the most high-profile regional attendees is Storm Saulter, the Jamaican director whose first feature film, Better Mus’ Come, received critical acclaim upon its release in late 2010. In this post, he talks about his new offering, filmmaking in the Caribbean and how new media is helping to change the landscape.
Peru: Activists Begin “Civic Crusade” in Defense of the Nanay River
In our first post in this tree-part series we briefly introduced some water-related issues in Iquitos, and later presented the controversy generated by the transnational Conoco Phillips and their exploration and search for hydrocarbons in the Nanay River basin. In this post we continue addressing the issue and discuss how organizations like the Water Committee are fighting this problem.
China: Intraparty Democracy
Qian Gang from China Media Project reviewed the discussion and development of Intra-party democracy within the Chinese Communist Party through the so-called “open nomination and direct election” in the election of grassroots representatives.
Guatemala: Profiting from Catastrophes
Kevin from the Guatemala Solidarity Network blog points readers to an article by Danilo Valladares published in Inter Press Service about “‘big disaster business’ – profiting from catastrophes.” In a country as vulnerable to natural disasters as Guatemala, a “state of public calamity” is frequently declared – to the joy...
Iran: Eight Years of Deception
International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran has released a short video “demonstrating and highlighting systematic cover-ups accompanying the marked rise in human rights violations over the eight years of his presidency”.
A Ghanain App at TechCrunch Disrupt
Erik writes about a Ghanaian tech team that pitched at TechCrunch Disrupt event: Saya is an app for texting. That mixes SMS, Facebook chat and hyperlocal findability to get in conversations with those near you. They’re on Android, Blackberry and waiting for their iPhone app to be approved.
Will China Fall Prey to the ‘Skyscraper Curse'?
By 2022, the number of skyscrapers in China will reach 1,318 compared to 563 in the United States. But according to one theory, the world's tallest buildings often rise on the eve of economic downturns...
Kenya: Safari 7s Rugby Tournament Excites Fans
One of the biggest sporting events in East Africa came alive between 21-23 September, 2012, in Kenya's capital city, Nairobi - the Safari Sevens, a rugby seven-a-side tournament which started in 1995 but has grown into a fixture in the Kenyan sporting calendar.
Uruguay: Legislators Move Forward Bill to Depenalize Abortion
After 14 hours of intense debate, Uruguay’s Chamber of Deputies voted 50 to 49 in favor of depenalizing abortion during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Twitter was abuzz during the whole day as Uruguayans shared their opinions on abortion and the bill under debate.