Stonebridge Properties Limited (STBR.mu) Q12017 Interim Report

first_imgStonebridge Properties Limited (STBR.mu) listed on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius under the Property sector has released it’s 2017 interim results for the first quarter.For more information about Stonebridge Properties Limited (STBR.mu) reports, abridged reports, interim earnings results and earnings presentations, visit the Stonebridge Properties Limited (STBR.mu) company page on AfricanFinancials.Document: Stonebridge Properties Limited (STBR.mu)  2017 interim results for the first quarter.Company ProfileStonebridge Properties Limited engages in the investment sector where the company focuses on investing in real estate securities and directly in properties, where such investments offer investors both income and capital growth. Stonebridge Properties Limited is listed on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius.last_img read more

Read More →

Fortis Microfinance Bank Plc (FORTIS.ng) HY2017 Interim Report

first_imgFortis Microfinance Bank Plc (FORTIS.ng) listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange under the Banking sector has released it’s 2017 interim results for the half year.For more information about Fortis Microfinance Bank Plc (FORTIS.ng) reports, abridged reports, interim earnings results and earnings presentations, visit the Fortis Microfinance Bank Plc (FORTIS.ng) company page on AfricanFinancials.Document: Fortis Microfinance Bank Plc (FORTIS.ng)  2017 interim results for the half year.Company ProfileFortis Microfinance Bank Plc offers a range of banking products and services for micro and small-to-medium enterprises, individuals, the unbanked and low-end entrepreneurs in Nigeria. The company provides affordable, flexible financial solutions to support the development of entrepreneurship among the unbanked and/or economical disadvantaged businesses and individuals. Fortis Microfinance Bank Plc has an extensive network of branches located in the major towns and cities of Nigeria. Its product offering ranges from transactional accounts, term deposits and loans to microcredit solutions for schooling, rentals and contract financing. The company also offers advice and support through workshops and seminars and corporate events. It has a range of products and services for high-net worth individuals and offers executive management advisory and training services for building human capacity. Fortis Microfinance Bank Plc’s head office is in Abuja, Nigeria. Fortis Microfinance Bank Plc is listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchangelast_img read more

Read More →

I’d accept the Sirius Minerals share offer and buy these two stocks instead

first_imgI’d accept the Sirius Minerals share offer and buy these two stocks instead The Sirius Minerals (LSE: SXX) share price is down by over 10%, as I write, after the company said its efforts to find alternative financing had failed. Here, I’ll explain why I’d accept the 5.5p per share takeover offer from FTSE 100 giant Anglo American. I’ll also look at two natural resource stocks I’d consider buying next.It’s all over nowIn a statement on Friday, Sirius said it had tried and failed to find an anchor investor for the $680m fundraising it would need to continue developing the mine. As a result, this proposal has been abandoned.5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential…The firm repeated its previous warning that if shareholders don’t accept the Anglo American bid, then there is “a high probability” Sirius will be placed into administration. This would result in a total loss for shareholders.Many Sirius shareholders feel the board is selling the firm cheap by recommending Anglo American’s bid. However, the reality is that mining companies like Sirius — with one undeveloped asset and no revenue — are risky bets. The company can’t find funding because the mine isn’t an attractive asset as a standalone investment.Anglo American can fit Woodsmith into its portfolio of mines and will be able to finance the project more cheaply than Sirius. I think the group’s bid of 5.5p per share for Sirius is fair. I’d accept the offer and reinvest the cash elsewhere.North Sea cash machineOil and gas producer Enquest (LSE: ENQ) is highly profitable and generating a lot of cash. The group’s production rose to an average of 68,606 barrels of oil equivalent per day last year. Operating costs averaged just $21 per barrel, leaving plenty of room for profit, even with oil prices under $60 per barrel.Despite all of these attractions, Enquest shares currently trade on just 4.2 times 2020 forecast earnings. Why?The answer is debt. Enquest has too much — $1.4bn at the last count. However, this figure has now fallen from $2bn at the end of 2017. If the company can continue to repay debt despite lower oil prices, then I’d expect the share price to rise steadily to reflect the group’s falling leverage.Enquest’s debt levels mean the shares carry some risk. There’s no dividend, either. But if things go to plan, I could see the shares doubling from current levels.Poised for a big gain?My next pick doesn’t have any debt problems. Indeed, Gulf Keystone Petroleum (LSE: GKP) currently has a net cash balance. However, this firm operates in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. This means it faces continual political risks and the possibility that conflict in the region might disrupt operations.So far this hasn’t happened. Indeed, the company expects to deliver a 30% increase in annual production in 2020. Analysts expect this to drive a 77% increase in earnings per share but, so far, the market isn’t giving Gulf Keystone any credit for this.Perhaps understandably, given the company’s risk profile and mixed history, the market is waiting for proof that CEO Jón Ferrier can deliver. The falling price of oil is also putting pressure on the stock’s valuation.GKP shares currently trade on just six times 2020 forecast earnings and offer a cash-backed dividend yield of 3.2%. I think this could be a buying opportunity. Roland Head owns shares of Gulf Keystone Petroleum. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Roland Head | Monday, 17th February, 2020 | More on: ENQ GKP SXX Our 6 ‘Best Buys Now’ Shares Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his analyst team at The Motley Fool UK have named 6 shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.So if you’re looking for more stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio today, then it might be a good day for you. Because we’re offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our ‘no quibbles’ 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee. “This Stock Could Be Like Buying Amazon in 1997” Enter Your Email Addresscenter_img See all posts by Roland Head I’m sure you’ll agree that’s quite the statement from Motley Fool Co-Founder Tom Gardner.But since our US analyst team first recommended shares in this unique tech stock back in 2016, the value has soared.What’s more, we firmly believe there’s still plenty of upside in its future. In fact, even throughout the current coronavirus crisis, its performance has been beating Wall St expectations.And right now, we’re giving you a chance to discover exactly what has got our analysts all fired up about this niche industry phenomenon, in our FREE special report, A Top US Share From The Motley Fool. Click here to claim your copy now — and we’ll tell you the name of this Top US Share… free of charge! I would like to receive emails from you about product information and offers from The Fool and its business partners. Each of these emails will provide a link to unsubscribe from future emails. More information about how The Fool collects, stores, and handles personal data is available in its Privacy Statement. Simply click below to discover how you can take advantage of this. Image source: Getty Images. last_img read more

Read More →

How to retire early: 3 of the best UK shares to help you achieve financial independence

first_img 5 Stocks For Trying To Build Wealth After 50 Royston Wild has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has recommended Warehouse REIT. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Image source: Getty Images How to retire early: 3 of the best UK shares to help you achieve financial independence Our 6 ‘Best Buys Now’ Shares Simply click below to discover how you can take advantage of this. Click here to claim your free copy of this special investing report now! Royston Wild | Friday, 26th June, 2020 center_img Sick of the daily grind? Want to have more financial independence to allow you to live your dreams? It’s not the stuff of fantasy. Just ask the growing number of ISA millionaires who have been able to retire early from the 9-5 through sensible share investing.There’s a lot of macroeconomic and geopolitical uncertainty out there. Stock markets remain extremely volatile as fears over the consequences of Covid-19, as well as growing trade tensions between the US and China, dominate thoughts concerning global economic growth. These major issues don’t necessarily have to derail your quest to avoid financial independence, though. There’s plenty of stocks out there that should still help you enjoy a very healthy income from your investment portfolio.5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential…Green giantIt’s obvious just by the name why Greencoat Renewables could be a mighty growth share in the years to come. Efforts to cut carbon emissions from lawmakers all over the globe have stepped up several notches in the past couple of years. It’s likely that the Covid-19 crisis will hasten the rush towards decarbonising the environment, too.Greencoat owns a number of wind farms in Ireland. It recently extended its operations to mainland Europe by acquiring a 51.9MW portfolio of French wind farms in March, too. It trades on a forward price-to-earnings ratio of 17 times, which is good value in my opinion, given its terrific long-term growth outlook. A dividend yield north of 5% puts a cherry on the cake.A defensive heroH&T Group is another share that could help you achieve financial independence. It’s one that should suit even those investors terrified of a prolonged economic meltdown. Why? This AIM company operates more than 250 pawnbroking shops the length and breadth of the UK. It can expect demand for its services to rocket as Britons’ finances unfortunately come under increasing strain.It’s why, like Greencoat Renewables, City analysts expect annual earnings to keep growing through to the end of 2021 at least. And it leads to expectations of further dividend rises, too, meaning H&T carries a bulky 5.2% yield today. A forward P/E ratio of 7 times fails to reflect the company’s excellent defensive qualities, in my opinion.Another key to financial independenceThose seeking to achieve financial independence sooner rather than later should also look closely at Warehouse REIT. This company operates warehouse spaces that are in hot demand from retailers and fast-moving consumer goods companies for their e-commerce operations.Online shopping is still a relatively small part of the larger retail pie and so has much more space to grow. And the Covid-19 crisis has given the e-commerce outlook another shot in the arm, potentially adding billions to the value of total transactions in 2020 alone. Warehouse REIT is in one of the box seats to ride this trend yet it trades on an undemanding forward P/E ratio of just 17 times. Combined with a bulky 6% dividend yield I reckon it’s another top stock for long-term investors. See all posts by Royston Wild Markets around the world are reeling from the coronavirus pandemic…And with so many great companies trading at what look to be ‘discount-bin’ prices, now could be the time for savvy investors to snap up some potential bargains.But whether you’re a newbie investor or a seasoned pro, deciding which stocks to add to your shopping list can be daunting prospect during such unprecedented times.Fortunately, The Motley Fool is here to help: our UK Chief Investment Officer and his analyst team have short-listed five companies that they believe STILL boast significant long-term growth prospects despite the global lock-down…You see, here at The Motley Fool we don’t believe “over-trading” is the right path to financial freedom in retirement; instead, we advocate buying and holding (for AT LEAST three to five years) 15 or more quality companies, with shareholder-focused management teams at the helm.That’s why we’re sharing the names of all five of these companies in a special investing report that you can download today for FREE. If you’re 50 or over, we believe these stocks could be a great fit for any well-diversified portfolio, and that you can consider building a position in all five right away. Enter Your Email Address Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his analyst team at The Motley Fool UK have named 6 shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.So if you’re looking for more stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio today, then it might be a good day for you. Because we’re offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our ‘no quibbles’ 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee. I would like to receive emails from you about product information and offers from The Fool and its business partners. Each of these emails will provide a link to unsubscribe from future emails. More information about how The Fool collects, stores, and handles personal data is available in its Privacy Statement.last_img read more

Read More →

Westport River House / Ruhl Walker Architects

first_imgSave this picture!© Peter Vanderwarker+ 16 Share Photographs ShareFacebookTwitterPinterestWhatsappMailOrhttps://www.archdaily.com/610331/westport-river-house-ruhl-walker-architects Clipboard 2011 “COPY” Westport River House / Ruhl Walker ArchitectsSave this projectSaveWestport River House / Ruhl Walker Architects Year:  Manufacturers: Benjamin Moore, Blanco, Bosch, Caesarstone, Carlisle SynTec, Icynene, InSinkErator, KWC, Kohler, Omnia Industries, Subzero/Wolf, Viessmann, Arcadia Custom, Baldwin, Cedar, Escenium HAUS, Halo, VALVO United States Photographs:  Peter Vanderwarker, Nat Rea Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project Architects: Ruhl Walker Architects Year Completion year of this architecture project Landscape Design: CopyHouses•Westport, United States ShareFacebookTwitterPinterestWhatsappMailOrhttps://www.archdaily.com/610331/westport-river-house-ruhl-walker-architects Clipboard Interior Design:Diane CramphinCity:WestportCountry:United StatesMore SpecsLess SpecsSave this picture!© Nat ReaText description provided by the architects. Built on a gentle slope on the Westport River, less than a mile from the coast in southeastern Massachusetts is an unabashedly modern glass house designed for a well known Cambridge general contractor and his wife. Mature oaks and cedars define the property edges and frame dramatic sunset and island views. The architecture expresses the owners’ gregarious way of life, and accommodates their passions for cooking and entertaining their large group of devoted friends.Save this picture!© Nat ReaThe house is technically a renovation, recycling an earlier faux “Saltbox Colonial” house’s foundation. Conceptually, two long, low bar-buildings float above sculpted lawn terraces stepping down to the river, sliding past each other to enhance views and cross ventilation. The river-side bar has a ten foot high by eighty foot long continuous wall of glass that frames views of the river, while the inland bar is shorter and more solid, with windows opening to carefully edited views of the woods.  Between the two bars is a compact circulation zone that terminates at one end in a floor-to-ceiling window facing the woods; the main roof drain is directly above, framing a rain-waterfall that spills into a steel-framed, rectangular bed of river rock in the ground below.Save this picture!First Floor PlanTo control costs, massing and finishes are simple, circulation space is minimal and square footage is limited, all spaces are multi-functional, and details are contemporary riffs on traditional New England conventions.  The overall openness as well as the large proportion of glazing helps the house feel much larger than its actual square footage.  On the upper level is an open living/dining/cooking space, contiguous screened living/dining space, separate exterior decks for cooking and gathering, a home office that doubles as guest room, and a master suite with en suite bath and wall of built-in walnut cabinetry. Newly designed within the existing basement walls are two bedrooms with shared sitting room and bath, as well as a large storage area with slatted walls for boating and beach storage, built below the screened porch.Save this picture!© Nat ReaProject gallerySee allShow lessShare Your Ideas for a Livable City with the Walking Visionaries AwardsArchitecture NewsImages Released of Tadao Ando’s First NYC BuildingArchitecture News Share Houses ArchDaily Reed Hilderbrand “COPY” Gilman, Guidelli & Bellow Inc Products translation missing: en-US.post.svg.material_description Westport River House / Ruhl Walker Architects General Contractor: Projects CopyAbout this officeRuhl Walker ArchitectsOfficeFollowProductsWoodGlassConcrete#TagsProjectsBuilt ProjectsSelected ProjectsResidential ArchitectureHousesWoodHousesWestportUnited StatesPublished on March 27, 2015Cite: “Westport River House / Ruhl Walker Architects” 27 Mar 2015. ArchDaily. Accessed 11 Jun 2021. ISSN 0719-8884Browse the CatalogSinkshansgroheBathroom Mixers – FocusGlass3MInterior Finishes at U.S. Bank StadiumPartitionsSkyfoldMarkerboard Finish for Folding WallsFiber Cements / CementsSwisspearlFiber Cement Cladding Panels in B66 Business CenterMembranesEffisusFaçade Protection – Breather+Metal PanelsSculptformClick-on Battens in WestConnex M8 JunctionPanels / Prefabricated AssembliesBruagBack-Ventilated Facades – CELLONTiles / Mosaic / GresiteMargresPorcelain Tiles – Linea CosmosGlassDip-TechCeramic Printing for Public TransportationAcousticSchöckStaircase Insulation – Tronsole®Porcelain StonewareApavisaSlabs – Wild ForestBulbs / SpotsAmbiance LumiereLighting – ZetaMore products »Save世界上最受欢迎的建筑网站现已推出你的母语版本!想浏览ArchDaily中国吗?是否翻译成中文现有为你所在地区特制的网站?想浏览ArchDaily中国吗?Take me there »✖You’ve started following your first account!Did you know?You’ll now receive updates based on what you follow! Personalize your stream and start following your favorite authors, offices and users.Go to my streamlast_img read more

Read More →

BUPA Foundation honoured at the 2007 ‘Life after Stroke’ awards

first_img The BUPA Foundation has been awarded the Trust Supporter Award at the Stroke Association’s annual Life After Stroke Awards for its “invaluable contribution to stroke research”.The awards ceremony, held at London’s Claridges, recognises the outstanding achievements that individuals have made in fighting the effects of stroke, as well as celebrating organisations which have furthered and encouraged the work of The Stroke Association.The BUPA Foundation is an independent charity that donates funds to medical research and healthcare initiatives across a range of disciplines from medicine to surgery to occupational health. Advertisement Howard Lake | 13 June 2007 | News About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of GoodJobs.org.uk. Researching massive growth in giving. Jon Barrick, Chief Executive of The Stroke Association said: “The BUPA Foundation has a long history of supporting stroke research, which to date totals in excess of £1 million.”The Corporate Supporter Award went to Servier Laboratories. BUPA Foundation honoured at the 2007 ‘Life after Stroke’ awards  15 total views,  1 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

Read More →

Using social media to attract donors

first_img AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis1 Using social media to attract donors  17 total views,  1 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis1 Fundraising online used to mean having a website and using bulk email tools. But charities who think that is enough are going to be left high and dry unless they understand that the world is changing. In fact, it has already moved on, and tomorrow’s donors are using social media tools to conduct their daily lives. Sites such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are the places where, increasingly, communication happens these days. This represents a complete change of mindset when working out how to reach people with your fundraising messages.The challenge is not so much a technical one, although you’ll need to understand enough of the technology in order to integrate data into your systems, it’s the conceptual challenge of understanding how people now expect to communicate, who’s in control, and how to get your message across.So, enough of the challenges, what are the opportunities relating to donor acquisition using social media?Firstly, equip your current donors with the tools to use social networking to reach out to their peers and recruit new donors for your cause. You can do this by offering them a fundraising ‘widget’ (like a badge) to display on their profile page on Facebook, MySpace or similar. This will then be visible to their friends, who can click through to a personalised sponsorship page or your charity’s website. This process known as ‘friendraising’ brings you new donors for nothing, and social media makes it all possible.Secondly, use social networking sites as research tools to build a list of potential supporters for an event. For example, if you’re an organisation planning an awareness event in Birmingham, you might spend a few hours in front of Facebook and MySpace to find groups with similar interests and causes to you in the Birmingham area, and communicate with their members. You may also have existing donors in that area, so communicate with their friends, or better still ask them to do it on your behalf.Third, post an interesting video on the YouTube non-profit programme. This gives you greater visibility than simply having a video on the regular site, and increased branding and upload capabilities.Lastly, use Twitter.com to post daily status updates to your site. Twitter is so-called because it’s like birds in the trees tweeting to one another – short updates, little and often. Your updates should be compelling, maybe a little provocative, but should always include a URL should a follower wish to take action. Followers of your updates might not yet be donors, but the constant drip-feed of updates about your cause might persuade them. A good example of a recent tweet from a conservation charity in Kenya is “Stop – no more donations! We now have enough for construction of 1st toilet. Anymore received will go to 2nd. URL…”.As ever, there’s no magic in the medium, it’s all about how you use it. One thing is certain though, by failing to understand the change in communications represented by social media you’re going to find communicating with prospective donors in the 21st century increasingly difficult.About ASIRobin Fisk is Fundraising Technology Expert at ASI.Advanced Solutions International (ASI) is the leading global provider of software for associations and non-profits, serving the industry since 1991. The company’s premier product, iMIS, is the only complete, upgradeable, web-based, not-for-profit business software system. iMIS has served nearly 3000 customers worldwide. ASI distributes its solutions through a direct sales force and a global network of local solution providers backed by award-winning technical support.www.asieurope.eu Tagged with: Digital Howard Lake | 12 January 2009 | News About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of GoodJobs.org.uk. Researching massive growth in giving.last_img read more

Read More →

British journalist freed after being held hostage in Basra for two months

first_imgNews News Organisation Reporters Without Borders is relieved to learn that Richard Butler, a British journalist who was kidnapped in Basra (590 km south of Baghdad) on 10 February, was rescued by Iraqi soldiers today. Butler was on assignment for the US TV network CBS News. His interpreter, who was kidnapped with him, was released by their captors after three days.“We are happy and relieved that Butler is safe and sound again after two months of being held hostage,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Iraq continues to be extremely dangerous for journalists, five years after the start of the war. We have not forgotten the 14 journalists of whom there has been no word in the many months since their abduction.”Iraqi soldiers found Butler blindfolded and with his hands tied in a house in a Basra district where the military were carrying out a major sweep. It is not clear whether the Iraqi army had been tipped off to his location. An Iraqi officer said his captors were arrested.Butler and his interpreter were kidnapped by gunmen early in the morning of 10 February outside the Qsar al Sultan Hotel in Basra, where Butler was staying. Members of Shiite cleric Moqtada Sadr’s movement succeeded in pressuring the group to release the interpreter three days later.Three journalists have been kidnapped in Iraq since the start of January. One of them, Haidar Mijwit Hamdane, was founded dead in Baghdad. In all, at least 87 journalists and media assistants have been taken hostage in Iraq during the past five years.Click here to read the chapter on Iraq in this year’s annual report on press freedom worldwide, which Reporters Without Borders issued on 13 February. RSF_en April 14, 2008 – Updated on January 20, 2016 British journalist freed after being held hostage in Basra for two months RSF’s 2020 Round-up: 50 journalists killed, two-thirds in countries “at peace” Iraq : Wave of arrests of journalists covering protests in Iraqi Kurdistan Reporters Without Borders is relieved to learn that Richard Butler (photo, ©AFP), a British journalist who was kidnapped in Basra (590 km south of Baghdad) on 10 February, was rescued by Iraqi soldiers today.“We are happy and relieved that Butler is safe and sound again after two months of being held hostage,” the organisation said. Follow the news on Iraq Three jailed reporters charged with “undermining national security” News to go further December 16, 2020 Find out more February 15, 2021 Find out more December 28, 2020 Find out more News IraqMiddle East – North Africa Help by sharing this information IraqMiddle East – North Africa Receive email alertslast_img read more

Read More →

Beset by online surveillance and content filtering, netizens fight on

first_img Open publication – Free publishing – More ennemiesRead in Arabic / اقرأ التقرير بالعربيةRead in Chinese / 看中文The last report, released in March 2011 at the climax of the Arab Spring, highlighted the fact that the Internet and social networks have been conclusively established as tools for protest, campaigning and circulating information, and as vehicles for freedom. In the months that followed, repressive regimes responded with tougher measures to what they regarded as unacceptable attempts to “destabilize” their authority. In 2011, netizens were at the heart of the political changes in the Arab world and elsewhere. They tried to resist the imposition of a news and information blackout but paid a high price.At the same time, supposedly democratic countries continued to set a bad example by yielding to the temptation to prioritize security over other concerns and by adopting disproportionate measures to protect copyright. Internet users in “free” countries have learned to react in order to protect what they have won. Some governments stepped up pressure on technical service providers to act as Internet cops. Companies specializing in online surveillance are becoming the new mercenaries in an online arms race. Hacktivists are providing technical expertise to netizens trapped by a repressive regime’s apparatus. Diplomats are getting involved. More than ever before, online freedom of expression is now a major foreign and domestic policy issue.New media keep pushing back the boundaries of censorshipOnline social networks complicate matters for authoritarian regimes that are trying to suppress unwanted news and information. It was thanks to netizens that Tunisians learned about the street vendor who set himself on fire in Sidi Bouzid and Egyptians learned about Khaled Said, the young netizen who was beaten to death by police outside an Alexandria Internet café. It was thanks to social networks that Sidi Bouzid and Khaled Said became news stories and went on to become cornerstones of the Arab Spring.The revolution of microblogs and opinion aggregators and the faster dissemination of news and information that results, combined with the growing use of mobile phones to livestream video, are all increasing the possibilities of freeing information from its straightjacket. The mixing of journalism and activism has been accentuated in extreme situations such as Syria, where ordinary citizens, appalled by the bloodshed, are systematically gathering information for dissemination abroad, especially by the international news media, so the outside world knows about the scale of the brutal crackdown taking place.Even the total news and information blackout in North Korea, the “Hermit Kingdom,” is being challenged. Mobile phones give those who live near the Chinese border the possibility of being linked to the rest of the world. And the border is sufficiently porous to allow mobile phones, CDs, DVDs and USB flash drives containing articles and other content to be smuggled in from China.In Turkmenistan, an “Information 2.0” war was started by a deadly explosion at an arms depot in the Ashgabat suburb of Abadan in July 2011. For the first time, netizens managed to break through the regime’s wall of silence by using their mobile phones to film video of the explosion and its aftermath and post it online. They subsequently paid a high price.Saudi Arabia’s relentless censorship has not been able to prevent women from fighting for the right to drive or vote and getting their fight relayed on the Internet, attracting the international community’s attention and, as a result, a degree of attention within the country.In 2011, use of online information to rally support was not limited to “political” goals. The Internet also buzzed with condemnation of corruption and social abuses, including the protests by the residents of the Chinese village of Wukan against the seizure of their farmland by unscrupulous officials, and the documentation of electoral fraud in Russia.In Vietnam, it is still dangerous to blog about the Chinese-run bauxite mines and their disastrous impact on the environment. The highland region where the mines are located is virtually sealed off. Its few visitors cannot take cameras, video-cameras or smartphones with them. The aim is to prevent the dissemination of potentially-embarrassing video footage. The Bauxitevietnam.info website is nonetheless managing to obtain information and is doing its best to cover the situation.Internet and mobile phone shutdowns become commonplaceRepressive regimes have learned the lesson. Keeping the media at bay, intimidating witnesses and blocking access to a few news websites are not enough to ensure the success of a news blackout. A much more effective way is to seal off the area concerned to prevent unwanted witness from entering and any digital content from leaving, and to cut off communications by blocking SMS messaging and by shutting down Internet access and mobile phone services in a temporary or targeted manner.Egypt showed the way at the height of the demonstrations at the end of February 2011 by cutting Internet access for five days, an unprecedented move. Other countries, such as Democratic Republic of Congo, Cameroon and Kazakhstan, have blocked SMS for the first ones or suspended the Internet for the last one during elections or unrest, or even ahead of anticipated unrest. China uses the well-tested tactic of suspending communications in cities or provinces when it loses control of the situation. Tibet, Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia were the first victims.Nonetheless, shutting down the Internet is a drastic solution that can create problems for the authorities and can hurt the economy. Slowing the Internet connection speed right down is more subtle but also effective as it makes it impossible to send or receive photos or videos. Iran is past master at this. Syria’s censors also play with the Internet connection speed, fluctuations being a good indicator of the level of repression in a given region.Bahrain is an example of a news blackout succeeding thanks to an impressive combination of technical, judicial and physical censorship methods.More content filteringAs soon as the uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt got under way, most regimes that censor the Internet quickly reinforced online content filtering in a bid to head off any possibility of similar unrest spreading to their own countries. Some regimes have adopted filtering as standard tool of governance, one that strengthens their hold on power. Livestreaming sites and social networks are often the most affected.In Uzbekistan, the government blocked access to forums where ordinary members of the public discussed the Arab revolutions. In China, the word “Jasmine” and the word “Occupy” followed by the name of a Chinese city were blocked online. In Belarus, where there were major demonstrations, the social network Vkontakte was rendered inaccessible. The Kazakh authorities reacted in a similarly disproportionate manner, blocking not only a few “extremist” sites but also the entire LiveJournal blog platform.Turkey seems to have backed away from an announced plan, bordering on the ridiculous, to censor 138 words online. It has nonetheless created a system of online content filtering which, although optional, is seen as a veiled form of censorship.The new Thai government boasts that more online content has been blocked in the past few months than in the previous three years. The grounds given for this new threat to freedom of expression is the need to combat lèse-majesté.Continuing vigilance is needed in Tunisia where Ammar 404, the nickname for the online filtering and surveillance system established by deposed President Ben Ali, could be revived as a result of a possible judicial decision to require filtering for pornographic content.South Korea has decided to increase the number of blocked websites in response to the North’s propaganda. Tajikistan, which does not figure in this report, has blocked Facebook and news websites while Pakistan is accused of wanting to build its own Great Electronic Wall.More content removal, pressure on technical service providersCensors are increasingly trying to enlist private-sector Internet companies in online surveillance and censorship. Some cooperate, others resist. Under government pressure, Chinese micro-blogging websites such as Sina Weibo have had to hire thousands of moderators and now require users to register under their real name.Website hosting companies are under growing pressure to remove content in response to “notice and take down” process, a procedure likely to lead to abuses, as UN special rapporteur on freedom of expression Frank La Rue has stressed. In Thailand, Prachatai news website editor Chiranuch Premchaiporn is facing a possible 20-year jail sentence for failing to react with sufficient speed when told to remove comments posted by site visitors that were critical of the monarchy.India is one of the countries where more and more pressure is being put on Internet service providers and website hosting companies. The authorities there are trying to persuade them to provide a preview of content so that anything “shocking” or liable to provoke sectarian strife can be eliminated.Threat to Net neutrality and online free speech from “right to be forgotten”More and more individuals are requesting that information involving them be deleted from online archives on the grounds of a supposed “right to be forgotten” or “right to digital oblivion.” European commissioner for justice Viviane Reding fuelled concern on 8 November by referring to a proposed directive that would allow anyone to request the deletion of content of a personal nature “for legitimate reasons.”A generalized “right to oblivion,” enshrined in a law, would be hard to reconcile with online freedom of expression and information. Such a law would be hard to implement in practice and could place an impossible obligation on content editors and hosting companies – the complete erasure of online content. A thorough debate is need to determine whether individual rights are not already sufficiently guaranteed by existing legal provisions on the right to privacy, media offences, personal data and recourse to the courts.(Read the response received by Reporters Without Borders from Viviane Reding’s spokesman on March 14th, 2012) Surveillance getting more effective and more intrusiveInternet content filtering is growing but Internet surveillance is growing even more. Censors prefer to monitor dissidents’ online activities and contacts rather than try to prevent them from going online. The police chief in the United Arab Emirates, for example, has acknowledged that the police monitor social networks.The security services no longer interrogate and torture a prisoner for the names of his accomplices. Now they want his Facebook, Skype and Vkontakte passwords. It is the same in Bahrain, Turkmenistan or Syria. The protection of networks of dissidents and reporters’ sources is one of the leading challenges in the fight for information. Foreign reporters visiting sensitive countries should take special precautions in accordance with local conditions. It is no longer enough to take a bullet-proof vest when setting off for a war zone or troubled region. A “digital survival kit” is also needed to encrypt information, anonymize communications and, if necessary, circumvent censorship.Attempts to “phish” for social network usernames and passwords have been reported in Syria and Iran, as well as the use of false security certificates. The attempts were reported in Syria after the authorities had stopped blocking access to Facebook – something that was clearly done not as a conciliatory gesture but in order to facilitate surveillance.The neutralization of encryption, anonymization and circumvention tools is also being prioritized by repressive regimes. Iran is now capable of blocking https and the ports used by Virtual Private Networks. China is able to restrict the number of IP addresses that can connect to the international network at the same time.To enhance their surveillance abilities, repressive regimes turn to specialized companies for ever more effective equipment and software for filtering, monitoring and Deep Packet Inspection. The SpyFiles which WikiLeaks has published are a mine of information on the subject. The companies they use are very often western ones that have been lured by a very lucrative market. They include the US company BlueCoat, criticized for its activities in Syria, the French company Amesys, which supplied Col. Gaddafi, and Vodafone, the target of an ANHRI suit in Egypt. The Italian company AreaSpa finally pulled out of Syria after an international campaign criticizing its cooperation with the Assad regime. The European Parliament has adopted a resolution supporting tougher regulation of exports to repressive countries. A bill with similar aims is currently before the US congress.In her book Consent of the Networked, journalist and Internet specialist Rebecca MacKinnon has rightly stressed the need for Internet users the world over to raise questions about the way technology is used in order to ensure that their rights and freedoms are protected.Propaganda rules the WebNorth Korea has taken its propaganda war against its southern neighbour on to the Web, establishing a presence on social networks. Cuban propaganda continues to attack bloggers who criticize the government, accusing them of being mercenaries working for the American “empire”. China has signed up “50-cents”, bloggers paid to post messages endorsed by the party, ever since the disturbances that shook in Inner Mongolia after a protesting herder was killed by a truck. Propaganda messages like this one have taken root on the Internet: “Dear students and friends, it was just a road accident. Some people with an ulterior motive have interpreted as an ethnic conflict, or linked to oil and gas. The government is taking this case very seriously … We hope that students will not believe the rumours …” The government is believed to have an arsenal of 40,000 microblogs to communicate with the population. Syria’s cyber army is expert in the art of trolling the Facebook walls of opponents and dissidents, often with the aim of discrediting them, and to drown out critical comments with a tide of praise for the government of President Bashar al-Assad. Twitter accounts have been created to exploit the #Syria hashtag, sending out hundreds of tweets with keywords that link to sports results or photos of the country. Bahrain is spending millions to polish its image abroad and give the impression that the country has returned to normal. This has been capped by the announcement that the 2012 Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix, cancelled last year, will go ahead in April. Cyber attacksCyber attacks in the form of distributed denials of service (DDoS) are widespread. Last year saw the rise of groups of hacker such as Anonymous, which were behind cyber attacks on the Tunisian, Egyptian and Syrian governments’ websites. Governments are often behind attempts to hack news websites or independent sites. Even Eritrea was hit. Opposition sites were blocked just as the United Nations was approving sanctions against the country. Sri Lankan sites were also victims of cyber attacks. On the eve of the parliamentary election in Russia, a series of coordinated cyber attacks and arrests of journalists and bloggers took place with the aim of stifling political discussion, which can only take place freely via the Internet. During the demonstrations in Belarus, the Internet service provider BelTelecom redirected web users trying to connect to the Vkontakte social network to sites containing malicious software.Besides a regular army, every country now has a cyber army, which may or may not be official. The reputation of the Chinese cyber police is well established and the Syrian and Iranian cyber armies also play a major role. On 9 April 2011, the netizen Zakariya Rashid Hassan died in custody in Bahrain, a week after he was arrested and charged with inciting hatred, disseminating false news, promoting sectarianism and calling for the overthrow of the government on online forums. March 13, 2012 – Updated on January 25, 2016 Beset by online surveillance and content filtering, netizens fight on The “UAE five”, a group of netizens and activists accused of online subversion and jailed in the United Arab Emirates, were accused of being traitors, as were their families. In Bahrain, the noted dissident Nabeel Rajab is regularly smeared in the media as well as being subjected to physically assault.In Cuba, a pitched battle is in progress between pro-government bloggers and their “alternative” counterparts who criticize the government. The latter, including the blogger Yoani Sanchez, have been the target of a smear campaign in the state-run media and on foreign propaganda sites. Chains of supportBonds have been created between blogospheres and citizens throughout the world have started relaying calls for solidarity, as well as startling images and shocking stories. Global Voices, the international network of bloggers and citizen journalists, has played an important role in the dialogue between online communities and NGOs that campaign for freedom of expression. This report, which presents the 2012 list of countries that are “Enemies of the Internet” and “under surveillance,” updates the report published on 12 March 2011. In order to combat increasingly competent censors, self-styled “hacktivists” have been giving technical assistance to vulnerable netizens to help them share information in the face of pervasive censorship. The campaigns on behalf of the Egyptian blogger Maikel Nabil Sanad and Syria’s Razan Ghazzawi have transcended international borders. The hashtag #OpSyria, started by Telecomix – a decentralised network of net activists committed to freedom of expression – has allowed Syrians to broadcast videos of the crackdown.Last year also saw the development of tools to bypass censorship and blocking of Web access, such as “Internet in a suitcase” and FreedomBox. Cyber freedom activists are working flat-out to respond to increasingly effective censorship tools.Diplomats enter the pictureFreedom of expression on the Internet is no longer the sole preserve of dissidents, geeks and censors. Diplomats have followed in their wake. Statements and joint texts issued by international organizations and coalitions of countries on Internet freedom have multiplied, from the report by Frank La Rue, the UN special rapporteur for the promotion and protection of freedom of opinion and expression, who last June acknowledged Internet access as a basic right, to the ruling by the European Court of Justice condemning Internet filtering and its adverse effects on freedom of expression.At a meeting of the U.N. Human Rights Council in late February, the high commissioner for human rights, Navi Pillay, deplored restrictions on the Internet and the arrests of bloggers in some countries. She declared: “The Internet has transformed human rights movements. States can no longer exercise control based on the notion of monopoly over information.”The U.S. secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, urged the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe to approve a statement guaranteeing online freedoms, believing “rights exercised in cyberspace deserve as much protection as those exercised in real space”. For their part, China, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan defended the principle of a code of good conduct for the Internet, a concept that in reality is aimed as legitimizing censorship. Democracies have a poor recordSome democratic countries are far from blameless. The free flow of news and information online often loses out to internal security, the war on terrorism and cyber crime, and even the protection of intellectual property. Monitoring of the Internet has been stepped up in India since the 2008 attacks in Mumbai. Russia habitually describes sites that do no more than criticize the Kremlin as “extremist” to justify closing them down. Canada has introduced repressive Internet legislation under the label of the fight against paedophilia. The United Kingdom, whose Digital Rights Bill aimed at protecting copyright has been singled out by U.N. Commissioner La Rue, went through a difficult period during the riots last August. In a worrying development, the Canadian company Research In Motion, manufacturers of the Blackberry, made the personal details of some users available to the police without a prior court order. Despite international condemnation and the fact that its laws are outdated, France still applies the Loppsi Internet security law, which provides for official filtering of the Web, and the Hadopi law, which allows for Web access to be cut off to prevent illegal downloading of copyright content, despite several unsuccessful cases. Decrees ordering the application of other laws show that the usual reaction of the authorities is to impose filtering. Australia has yet to scrap its national filtering system, despite waning support and the fact that the type of content it is designed to cover may change. Speeches by U.S. officials on the importance of the fight against online censorship and their financial support for anti-censorship tools is belied by the treatment of WikiLeaks (see the Reporters Without Borders report on the United States and the Internet). Using Visa and MasterCard to cut off its access to funds has hampered the site’s operations. Bradley Manning, suspected of being one of WikiLeaks’ informers, has been detained for several months in dreadful conditions. The founder of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, is the subject of a “secret indictment” which Reporters Without Borders urges the U.S. authorities to clarify. Response of Internet users and netizens of the “free world”Internet users in Western countries cut their teeth with the Occupy Wall Street movement. Many of them took to the streets to protest against the repressive U.S. Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA), which sacrificed Internet freedom for the sake of copyright protection. The operation Stop SOPA and the 24-hour blackout observed by many websites, including Wikipedia, mobilised Web users throughout the world who were potentially affected by these bills to an unprecedented extent. The campaign took off again with a new wave of protest against the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), which up till then had left most people indifferent despite campaigns by the NGOs La Quadrature du Net and Reporters Without Borders. Netizens from all sides understood that these bills could affect on their day-to-day activities. Eastern Europe spearheaded the campaign. Several governments held off ratification. Resistance to ACTA is stronger than ever and the treaty may not see the light of day. Vigilance must be maintained. The next target for Internet activists could be the Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement Directive (IPRED), proposed by the European Union to clamp down on infringements of intellectual property law, which could potentially lead to large-scale filtering of the Internet. Another blow for Web neutrality. Internet sovereignty and fragmentation of the Web Internet sovereignty is an idea that is gaining ground in the minds of national leaders, whether repressive or not. Others have followed the example of the national platform created in Burma in 2010. Several times in 2011, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, true to his nationalist policies, announced the creation of a national Web, a “clean” version of the Internet with its own search engine and messaging service. This may mean two different types of access, one for the authorities and another for the rest of the population, similar to the way the Internet is now structured in Burma. Belarus requires commercial companies to register the websites they have set up in the country. This does not affect news and information sites for the time being. Some countries such as North Korea, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Cuba, and also Iran, censor Internet access so effectively that they restrict their populations to local intranets that bear no resemblance to the World Wide Web. The decision by Twitter among others to apply location-specific censorship confirms the tendency to fall back on national Webs.In 2011, the fragmentation of the Internet gathered pace. Web users were granted varying access depending on where they were connected. This is contrary to the original concept of the founders of the Web. Digital segregation is spreading. Solidarity between defenders of a free Internet, accessible to all, is more than ever needed for the information to continue to flow. Egypt jailed its first political prisoner of the post-Mubarak era, the blogger Maikel Nabil Sanad who was convicted for criticizing the armed forces. RSF_en Organisation center_img Getting rid of awkward witnesses2011 was the deadliest year for netizens, its violence unmatched in the time that dissidents and human rights campaigners have been making widespread use of the Web. Several were killed in Bahrain, Mexico, India and Syria. Dozens of others are probably still to be identified and there will undoubtedly be still more to add to the toll, particularly in Syria. In Mexico, drug cartels hit social network users directly. Three netizens and one journalist were shot dead in cold blood. The headless body of a Mexican Internet activist was found in Nuevo Laredo on 9 November. The victim, nicknamed “Rascatripas” (Belly-Scratcher), moderated the website “Nuevo Laredo en Vivo” which exposed organized crime. A message left beside the body proclaimed: “This happened to me for not understanding that I shouldn’t report things on social networks.” House arrests and “fake releases” abound. China has made this a speciality, as the blogger Hu Jia and cyber-dissident Hada, who campaigns for the rights of the Mongol people, discovered. Vietnam has also used this practice.Inhuman treatment, pressure and unfair tacticsMany Syrian and Bahraini netizens have been tortured in custody. Iranian authorities in particular favour extracting confessions from dissidents then broadcasting them on television. In Egypt bloggers have reported being subjected to degrading treatment during questioning by security forces. At least seven media workers had already been killed as a result of their work in Syria by the end of February this year. Netizens who also paid with their lives included Basil Al-Sayed, Ferzat Jarban and Soleiman Saleh Abazaid.Raids and roundupsAs netizen numbers grow, more and more of them are at risk. At least 199 cases of arrests of netizens were recorded in 2011, a 31-percent increase compared with the previous year. Today, at least 120 netizens are in prison because of their activities. China, followed by Vietnam and Iran, has the largest number of netizens in prison again this year. On 16 February this year, a raid was carried out at the Syrian Centre for Media and Freedom of Expression, similarly in Turkmenistan after an explosion at an arms depot near Abadan killed many civilians. Iran and Vietnam have also used similar methods. Vietnam has attacked Catholic networks and China regularly arrests netizens and dissidents to intimidate their followers. Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo remains behind bars. Reports The 2012 list of the Enemies of the InternetBahrain and Belarus move from “under surveillance” to “Enemies”. Libya and Venezuela had been dropped from the list of countries “under surveillance” while India and Kazakhstan have been added to it.Bahrain and Belarus, new Enemies of the InternetTwo countries, Bahrain and Belarus, have been moved from the “under surveillance” category to the “Enemies of the Internet” list, joining the ranks of the countries that restrict Internet freedom the most: Burma, China, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Vietnam. They combine often drastic content filtering with access restrictions, tracking of cyber-dissidents and online propaganda. Iran and China, in particular, reinforced their technical capacity in 2011 and China stepped up pressure on privately-owned Internet companies in order to secure their collaboration.Iran has announced the launch of a national Internet. Iran and Vietnam have both launched a new wave of arrests, while the bloody crackdown on protests in Syria is hitting netizens hard and is enabling the regime to perfect its mastery of online surveillance with Iran’s help. Turkmenistan has fought its first battle in the war over Information 2.0 while North Korea, which is developing its online presence for propaganda purposes, is confronted with an increase in smuggling of banned communications equipment across the Chinese border. In Cuba, bloggers supportive of the government and those critical of the regime argue online.Saudi Arabia has continued its relentless censorship and suppressed coverage of a provincialuprising. Uzbekistan took measures to prevent Uznet from becoming a forum for discussing the Arab springs. There is one light of hope: the situation is improving in Burma, where the military have permitted the release of journalists and bloggers and the unblocking of news websites, but the legislative and technical tools for controlling and monitoring the Internet have yet to be dismantled.Bahrain offers an example of an effective news blackout based on a remarkable array of repressive measures: keeping the international media away, harassing human rights activists, arresting bloggers and netizens (one of whom died in detention), smearing and prosecuting free speech activists, and disrupting communications, especially during the major demonstrations.In Belarus, President Lukashenko’s regime has increased his grip on the Web as the country sinks further into political isolation and economic stagnation. The Internet, a space used for circulating information and mobilizing protests, has been hit hard as the authorities have reacted to “revolution via the social media.” The list of blocked websites has grown longer and the Internet was partially blocked during the “silent protests.” Some Belarusian Internet users and bloggers have been arrested while others have been invited to “preventive conversations” with the police in a bid to get them to stop demonstrating or covering demonstrations. The government has used Twitter to send messages that are meant to intimidate demonstrators, and the main ISP has diverted those trying to access the online social network Vkontakte to sites containing malware. And Law No. 317-3, which took effect on 6 January 2012, reinforced Internet surveillance and control measures.Movement in “countries under surveillance” listThe countries “under surveillance” list still includes Australia, whose government clings to a dangerous content filtering system; Egypt, where the new regime has resumed old practices and has directly targeted the most outspoken bloggers; Eritrea, a police state that keeps its citizens away from the Internet and is alarmed by its diaspora’s new-found militancy online and on the streets of foreign cities; France, which continues its “three-strikes” policy on illégal downloading, with suspension of Internet access, and wher administrative filtering is introduced by an internal security law and appears with increasing frequency in decrees implementing laws; and Malaysia, which continues to harass bloggers (who have more credibility that the traditional media) in the run-up to general elections.The “under surveillance” list also includes Russia, which has used cyber-attacks and has arrested bloggers and netizens to prevent a real online political debate; South Korea, which is stepping up censorship of propaganda from its northern neighbour and keeps an array of repressive laws; Sri Lanka, where online media and journalists continue to be blocked and physically attacked; Thailand, where the new government sends bloggers to prison and is reinforcing content filtering in the name of cracking down on lèse-majesté; Tunisia, where freedom of expression is still fragile and content filtering could be reimposed; Turkey, where thousands of websites are still inaccessible, alarming filtering initiatives have been taken and netizens and online journalists continue to be prosecuted; and the United Arab Emirates, where surveillance has been reinforced preventively in response to the Arab Spring.Venezuela and Libya no longer under surveillanceIn Libya, many challenges remain but the overthrow of the Gaddafi regime has ended an era of censorship. Before his removal and death, Col. Gaddafi had tried to impose a news blackout by cutting access to the Internet. In Venezuela, access to the Internet continues to be unrestricted. The level of self-censorship is hard to evaluate but the adoption in 2011 of legislation that could potentially limit Internet freedom has yet to have any damaging effect in practice. Reporters Without Borders will nonetheless remain vigilant as relations between the government and critical media are tense.India and Kazakhstan, new additions to the “under surveillance” categorySince the Mumbai bombings of 2008, the Indian authorities have stepped up Internet surveillance and pressure on technical service providers, while publicly rejecting accusations of censorship. The national security policy of the world’s biggest democracy is undermining freedom of expression and the protection of Internet users’ personal data. Kazakhstan, which likes to think of itself as a regional model after holding the rotating presidency of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in 2010, nonetheless seems to be turning its back on all its fine promises in order to take the road of cyber-censorship. An unprecedented oil workers strike, a major riot, a strange wave of bombings and the president’s ailing health all helped to increase government tension in 2011 and led to greater control of information, especially online information: blocking of news websites, cutting of communications around the city of Zhanaozen during the riot, and new, repressive Internet regulations.Thailand and Burma may be about to change placesIf Thailand continues down the slope of content filtering and jailing netizens on lèse-majesté charges, it could soon join the club of the world’s most repressive countries as regards the Internet.Burma could soon leave the Enemies of the Internet list if the country takes the necessary measures. It has clearly embarked on a promising period of reforms, which has included the release of journalists and bloggers and the restoration of access to blocked websites. It must now go further by abandoning censorship altogether, releasing the journalists and bloggers still held, dismantling the surveillance apparatus that was built on the national Internet platform, and repealing the Electronic Act.Other countries to watchOther countries have jailed netizens or established a form of Internet censorship. Even if they are not on these lists, Reporters Without Borders will continue to closely monitor online freedom of information in countries such as Azerbaijan, Morocco and Tajikistan, to name just a few. At the time of writing, Pakistan has invited private-sector companies to bid for the creation of a national Internet filtering and blocking system. Reporters Without Borders has asked the authorities to abandon this project, which would result in the creation of an Electronic Great Wall. If they go ahead, Pakistan could be added to the Enemies of the Internet in 2013. Related documents Download the reportPDF – 2.52 MB Help by sharing this informationlast_img read more

Read More →

Councillors last to know about social housing development in West Limerick

first_imgFacebook Top Fianna Fáil councillor will reject Green coalition deal Advertisement TAGSAbbeyfealeCllr Francis FoleyCllr Michael CollinsCllr Seamus BrowneFianna FáillimerickLimerick City and Council CouncilMunicipal District of Newcastle WestSinn Feinsocial housing WhatsApp Abbeyfeale company getting back to work Fianna Fáil TD Niall Collins appointed as Minister of State Previous articleCould you be Ireland’s next superstar family ….Next articleLimerick students bag a spot in Junk Kouture finals Alan Jacqueshttp://www.limerickpost.ie Email Linkedincenter_img Twitter Print RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Decision to enter Phase 4 of reopening Ireland deferred to August 10 NewsLocal NewsCouncillors last to know about social housing development in West LimerickBy Alan Jacques – February 8, 2018 2976 Mayor Michael Collins.COUNCILLORS expressed their disappointment with the Council this week after claiming they were last to hear about a €1.59 million social housing development in West Limerick.Cathaoirleach of Newcastle West Municipal District, Cllr Michael Collins told the council executive at this month’s area meeting that he was “flabbergasted” not to have been informed about the proposed project for New Street in Abbeyfeale.“An announcement was made for this €1.59 million social housing development in Abbeyfeale. I knew nothing about it. Why were we not informed?” he asked.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up “I am flabbergasted”.Sinn Fein councillor Seamus Browne described the council’s move not to inform local representatives prior to the announcement as “regrettable”. He said the project was considered as “insensitive” in Abbeyfeale, especially considering one family were currently faced with their home subsiding into the river, just 100 yards up the street from the proposed development.“We had no prior knowledge. We should have been made aware of this project. We weren’t even given the opportunity to agree or disagree with it,” Cllr Browne said.“Abbeyfeale has a large population. It has no family resource centre. No family resource officer. It doesn’t even have a Garda station. The town needs the necessary resources. This is deeply unfair to everyone.”Cllr Francis Foley (FF) also told the council executive that he had no prior knowledge of the announcement of a social housing development in Abbeyfeale. He also pointed out there was no full-time Garda Sergeant in the town and the police station was only open one hour per day.by Alan [email protected] Mayor welcomes the re-opening of non-essential retail across Limerick €1.5 million boost for five County Limerick towns from Rural Regeneration and Development Fund last_img read more

Read More →