Tag «杭州百花坊官网»

China: RSF welcomes the awarding of Swedish PEN Prize to detained publisher Gui Minhai

first_img News Receive email alerts Reporters Without Borders (RSF) commends the awarding of Swedish PEN’s 2019 Tucholsky Prize to Swedish publisher Gui Minhai, arbitrarily detained in China since 2015 despite serious health concerns. Help by sharing this information to go further June 2, 2021 Find out more November 20, 2019 China: RSF welcomes the awarding of Swedish PEN Prize to detained publisher Gui Minhai RSF_en News Follow the news on Asia – Pacific Mongolia : RSF urges presidential candidates to voice support for press freedom Organisation Pakistani TV anchor censored after denouncing violence against journalists ChinaSwedenAsia – PacificEurope – Central Asia Condemning abusesInternational bodies DisappearancesImprisonedImpunityUnited Nations June 10, 2021 Find out more News ChinaSwedenAsia – PacificEurope – Central Asia Condemning abusesInternational bodies DisappearancesImprisonedImpunityUnited Nations In rural India, journalists face choice between covering pandemic and survival June 7, 2021 Find out more Swedish publisher Gui Minhai, 55, arbitrarily detained in China and still awaiting a trial date after having been kidnapped in Thailand in 2015, was awarded the 2019 Tucholsky Prize on Friday November 15th by the Swedish PEN, an association promoting freedom of speech. Sweden’s Culture and Democracy Minister Amanda Lind handed out the prize despite open threats from Chinese Ambassador in Sweden Gui Congyou.“The case of Gui Minhai reminds us that a citizen of the European Union can be kidnapped and detained for four years without any valid reason and in total impunity by Beijing,” denounces Erik Halkjaer, the president of Reporters Without Borders (RSF) Sweden. Cédric Alviani, head of Reporters Without Border (RSF) East Asia Bureau, urges the international community “to increase pressure on China to obtain the release of Gui Minhai and all other journalists and bloggers detained.”Gui Minhai is the last detained of the five “Causeway Bay booksellers” that were abducted by the Chinese regime in 2015. He is currently detained for alleged “illegal business operations,” “disclosure of state secrets ” and for “illegally spending time with foreign diplomats.” In 2017, the Chinese authorities prevented him from seeing a doctor proposed by his embassy despite symptoms corresponding to a serious neurological disease.RSF has called multiple times for Gui Minhai’s release, and has submitted his case to the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (UNWGAD).China, with at least 120 journalists behind bars, ranks 177th out of 180 countries and territories in the RSF World Press Freedom Index 2019. In stark contrast, Sweden is ranked 3rd. Newslast_img read more

Better government across Africa

first_imgMo Ibrahim at the 6 October launch ofthe 2008 Ibrahim Index of AfricanGovernance, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.(Image: Mo Ibrahim Foundation)Mary AlexanderNearly two-thirds of sub-Saharan African countries are enjoying better governance, according to a new report by the Mo Ibrahim foundation. The 2008 Ibrahim Index of African Governance, published in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia yesterday, has given 31 of the region’s 48 countries a better score than that of the 2007 index.The index, produced by a team from Harvard University, assesses government performance in five broad categories: participation and human rights; rule of law; transparency and corruption; human development; and sustainable economic opportunity.Coming out top of the overall ranking was the island nation of Mauritius, with a score of 85.1 out of 100. Second was the Seychelles with 79.8, third Cape Verde with 74.7, fourth Botswana with 74, and South Africa came in fifth with 71.5.The country with the worst governance was Somalia, with an overall score of only 18.9 out of 100. It was joined at the bottom of the ranking by the Democratic Republic of Congo with 29.8, Chad (33.9), Sudan (34.2) and Angola (43.3).‘The real story coming out of Africa’The foundation was set up by Sudan-born entrepreneur Mo Ibrahim in 2006 to support great African leadership.“Obscured by many of the headlines of the past few months, the real story coming out of Africa is that governance performance across a large majority of African countries is improving,” Ibrahim said at yesterday’s launch.“I hope that these results will be used as a tool by Africa’s citizens to hold their governments to account, and stimulate debate about the performance of those who govern in their name.”Apart from producing the index, which was first published in September 2007, the Ibrahim Foundation also confers the Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership, which at US5-million is the largest annual prize in the world.A selection panel headed by former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan awards the prize to a retired African head of state who demonstrated excellence in leadership during their time in office. In October 2007 the inaugural prize went to former Mozambique president Joaquim Chissano.The 2008 Ibrahim Index is based on data from 2006, the last year with reasonably complete data available for sub-Saharan countries.“A time lag in indices of this nature is standard practice,” the foundation said in a statement. “This is mainly due to problems with data collection and availability. The Ibrahim Index, with its two-year time lag, is more up-to-date than many other indices.” The 2007 index was produced from 2005 data.Human rights and developmentIn the participation and human rights category, which assesses participation in elections and respect for civil and political rights, 28 sub-Saharan countries improved their scores from 2005 to 2006.“Many of these have demonstrated improved participation in elections generally deemed free and fair by international observers,” the foundation said. “However, many issues remain across the continent in this area, particularly with regard to women’s rights.”Eighteen countries regressed, while only two remained the same. The countries showing the greatest respect for democracy and freedom were Mauritius, with a score of 92.2, Liberia (87.9), Botswana (87.4), South Africa (86.3) and Sao Tome and Principe (83.4).Liberia also saw the greatest improvement, jumping 48.9 points from its 2005 score of 39. Mauritania lost the most ground in participation and human rights, falling 29.6 points from 60.4 in 2005 to 30.8 in 2006.The category which saw the greatest improvement overall was human development, which looks at rates of poverty, health, sanitation and education. Here 35 countries improved from 2005 to 2006, while only six worsened and seven remained the same.Mauritius again came out at the top, with a human development score of 89.9. It was followed by the Seychelles (88.4), South Africa (68.7), Botswana (68) and Gabon (67.8).Economic opportunitySub-Saharan Africa’s next best performance was in the sustainable economic opportunity category, in which 34 countries improved their scores and 11 lost ground. The category looks at economic growth in the context of environmental sustainability, and includes the subcategories of wealth creation, macroeconomic stability and financial integrity, the arteries of commerce, and environmental sensitivity.In the arteries of commerce section, the foundation found that, “Nearly all countries have recorded progress in generating access to technology, with 40 countries improving their scores for internet usage and 44 countries improving their scores for phone subscribers.”The top scorers for economic opportunity were Mauritius (71.4), the Seychelles (70), South Africa (63.5), Gabon (61.6) and Botswana (58.2).Rule of law and safetyTwenty-four countries improved their scores in the rule of law, transparency and corruption category, while 19 regressed and only three remained unchanged. This category looks at the ratification of critical legal norms, judicial independence and efficiency, and corruption.The countries best upholding the rule of law were Cape Verde (86.1), Botswana (81.6), Mauritius (80.5), the Seychelles (80.4) and South Africa (78.1).South Africa’s worst performance was in the category of safety and security, coming in at 42nd out of 48 countries. This category, which looks at national security and public safety, also saw the slowest progress overall, with only 13 countries showing improvement from 2005 to 2006, 10 regressing, and 25 remaining the same.The safest and most secure sub-Saharan African countries in 2006 were Cape Verde (100), Gabon (100), Sao Tome and Principe (100), Rwanda (98.4) and the Comoros (94.4).Do you have queries or comments about this article? Email Mary Alexander at [email protected] articlesAfrica: fast factsAngola heads for democracy Useful linksMo Ibrahim FoundationAfrican UnionKennedy School of Government, Harvard Universitylast_img read more

SA tourism growth beats world average

first_img18 April 2013 South Africa stands out as a tourist destination in the world, Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk said on Tuesday. “Last year we grew at more than double the world average – 10.5% for January to November 2012, compared to a global average growth of four percent,” he said at an awards ceremony in New York. “With growth rates of more than double the world average and quadruple the world average if one takes overseas visitors into account, we can look back very favourably on 2012.” He said tourism remained stable in South Africa in the midst of the 2008/2009 global financial crisis. “South Africa is indeed a unique and varied destination which offers tourist experiences that suit every taste and budget,” Van Schalkwyk said. “Visitors to South Africa stand in awe of how much this country has to offer, which includes the variety of experiences, the value for money, our world-class tourism infrastructure, and of course our culturally-diverse people.” He said 2013 was a special year for South Africa, as it had entered its 20th year of democracy. “Irrespective of what news agencies may tell you, South Africa still remains a story of hope, a story of inspiration, and a story of the future,” Van Schalkwyk said. “That’s why more and more people want to come to our country and see it for themselves. Sapalast_img read more

Rookie legislator leaves Tory caucus over decisions affecting francophones

first_imgTORONTO — A Progressive Conservative legislator who publicly denounced Ontario’s decision to eliminate the independent office of the French-language services commissioner and a planned French-language university has left the Tory caucus.In a letter to the Speaker of the legislature, Amanda Simard says her decision is effective immediately, and she will remain in parliament as an independent.The rookie legislator, who represents a largely Franco-Ontarian riding, broke ranks with Premier Doug Ford’s government over the two controversial decisions affecting about 600,000 francophones in the province.Simard said Wednesday that she was not satisfied by the government’s announcement late last week that it would create a commissioner position within the office of the provincial ombudsman, establish a Ministry of Francophone Affairs, and hire a senior policy adviser on francophone affairs in the premier’s office. She said the partial backtracking was not enough.Ford has said the measures announced in the fall economic statement were necessary to bring down the province’s deficit, although he has not said how much would be saved.Simard argued Wednesday the moves would not “contribute in any meaningful way” to the provincial belt-tightening.The Canadian Presslast_img read more