Rana Akbani detained by the authorities

first_imgNews Organisation RSF_en Help by sharing this informationcenter_img March 28, 2011 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Rana Akbani detained by the authorities Rana Akbani, a Syrian journalist working in eastern Libya for the culture section of the Libyan newspaper Al-Shams, went missing after being accused during an interview on Al-Libya TV of bias and lying in her coverage of street demonstrations in Benghazi. She was also accused of collaborating with foreign countries, which is tantamount to being accused of spying. Her family said the Libyan authorities released her on 14 April. last_img read more

A meeting of ministerial minds

first_imgOver two decades, childhood deaths have fallen significantly, from 12 million annually in 1990 to 7.6 million in 2010, a statistic that simultaneously gives cause for hope and motivation for the global health community to keep its shoulder to the wheel.“There are still too many preventable deaths,” Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) Dean Julio Frenk said Monday. “It is within our grasp to make enormous progress to ensure the survival and development of small children.”Frenk told a gathering of more than a dozen ministers of health from various nations that this is a time of opportunity to make gains in child and maternal health. The reason, he said, is that the 2015 deadline for achieving the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals is approaching, and many nations are realizing they’re not on track to achieve them, which could prompt renewed activity.The ministers gathered at the Harvard Kennedy School’s (HKS) Taubman Building for a dinner discussion that ended the first full day of the Harvard Ministerial Health Leaders’ Forum, an event sponsored by the Ministerial Leadership Program for Health, an initiative launched by HSPH and HKS in collaboration with the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation last fall. The forum is designed to allow health ministers to learn from each other’s experiences, draw on the resources of Harvard faculty members, and help the officials to achieve their nations’ health priorities.The three-day forum mixed in speeches with small-group exercises, case studies, and discussions on setting priorities and learning how to work with finance ministers to get projects funded. On Sunday evening, Michelle Bachelet, United Nations undersecretary general for women and former president of Chile, delivered the keynote speech. Ministerial Leadership in Health Program Executive Director Michael Sinclair said the hope is that the forum will help to create a network of sitting health ministers who can serve as resources for each other, sharing best practices and getting advice from each other as they tackle the difficult health problems facing their countries.“The program is to recognize the extraordinary leaders from around the world and create an environment to begin building a network of shared learning and mutual support,” said Frenk, who served as Mexico’s minister of health from 2000 to 2006.On Monday, Frenk addressed the dinner gathering, followed by with Amie Batson of USAID and Mickey Chopra of UNICEF. Batson and Chopra spoke about an upcoming meeting in Washington, D.C., a call to action on improving child health.“Child survival … is truly something that every country, every stakeholder, every family takes responsibility for,” Batson said.At the current 2.2 percent annual reduction in the rate of child death, Batson said the world will fall short of the international goals on child health, which call for a two-thirds reduction in childhood death from 1990 levels.“The question is what the world needs to do differently,” Batson said.Chopra said that rapid progress is possible if governments move maternal and child health up on their priority lists.“The gains we can make are just remarkable, if not miraculous,” Chopra said.The series of eight Millennium global goals include ending poverty and hunger; ensuring universal education, gender equality, child health, maternal health, and environmental sustainability; fighting HIV/AIDS; and creating a global partnership for development.Some discussion focused on how to best implement health programs. Frenk brought up smallpox as an example of an international success — perhaps the greatest one — though it left little improvement in overall health systems in its wake.Such a vertically oriented approach focused on a single disease and a horizontal approach focused on strengthening health systems have their drawbacks. Frenk advocated instead a “diagonal” approach, incorporating elements of both, using focused health priorities to drive broad improvements in the health system.William Hsiao, the K.T. Li Professor of Economics at HSPH, commented near the end of the discussion that we’ve known how to improve maternal and child health, and had the tools to do so, for decades. More recently, we’ve understood the best ways to deliver those tools and apply that knowledge to populations in need, through campaigns to encourage breastfeeding, to vaccinate children, and to improve hygiene. He challenged the ministers in the room, asking them to consider what the barriers are in their own nations to improving maternal and child health.last_img read more

Palace decries int’l media reports linking Duterte to ABS-CBN closure

first_img“This assertion is remarkably erroneous, lacks objectivity and scant in factual basis. Simply, a false narrative,” Andanar said. “NTC’s (National Telecommunications Commission) cease and desist order is an independent and impartial decision.”“Let us be reminded that President Duterte has accepted the apology of ABS-CBN Corporation and this thereby undermines any assumption that the President was behind NTC’s decision,” he added.ABS-CBN’s shutdown on Tuesday evening made international headlines as rights groups, lawmakers, and the general public decried the shutdown during the coronavirus pandemic.President Duterte had repeatedly threatened to block the renewal of the ABS-CBN franchise, which expired on May 4, over unaired political advertisements during the 2016 elections.Late last year, President Duterte even urged the owners of ABS-CBN to just sell the company. But the Chief Executive accepted ABS-CBN’s apology over the issue of his unaired ad last February.“This is not an issue of press freedom but an issue regarding legislative franchise. Democracy, and the free press and free speech that come with it, is very much alive in the country and effectively protected,” Andanar said.“The mandate of a broadcast franchise issuance and renewal is within the authority of the Congress, and not solely of the President, who only signs the law to be executory,” he added.“Decision regarding the legislative franchise of ABS-CBN falls within the purview and wisdom of Congress and ABS-CBN has the right to pursue any and exhaust all legal remedies it deems necessary to resolve the matter,” he further said.Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque, meanwhile, said that President Duterte cannot interfere with the matter since NTC is attached to the Department of Information and Communications Technology, it is a quasi-judicial body that functions independently.“Kung ang Presidente po ay makikialam diyan sa NTC, ‘yan po ay krimen. Ito po ay paglabag doon sa code of conduct for local officials at labag din ito sa anti-graft,” he added./PN MANILA – Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar on Thursday slammed international media reports that allegedly connecting  ABS-CBN’s status to the President Rodrigo Duterte’s threats against the company.last_img read more

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

first_imgAs the 2016 Olympics came to an end, I wanted to focus on some good things, some bad things, and one ugly incident.  There were many super performances by the world’s greatest athletes.  I have already written about swimming and gymnastics, so today I want to focus on track and field.Usain Bolt is definitely the world’s fastest human.  Some people ask why he is so quick. He is 6’5″ with fast leg turnover and an attitude that allows him to relax and not worry so he gets the maximum out of his body.  Ashton Eaton again proved he is the world’s greatest athlete by winning another gold in the decathlon.  The American 100m hurdlers got the first sweep in the history of women’s running events.Unfortunately, Ryan Lochte and his rowdy friends showed the world how some athletes think they can get by with their fame and/or their money.  They seem to think those two things will keep them out of trouble.  At the age of 32 Lochte has earned a great living from his swimming prowess.  As you probably saw, he already has a publicist and a lawyer available at his beck and call.  Let’s hope that the real Olympics for the Americans is not remembered for this incident alone.last_img read more

Cardiff reach Langston resolution

first_img Press Association Cardiff owner Vincent Tan had stated he was confident of reaching an agreement after holding talks with Hammam, and a deal has now been struck. It is believed Cardiff agreed to pay a one-off lump sum and a schedule of further, smaller payments. Tan said: “I am grateful and indebted to Sam Hammam, Michael Isaac and Michael Filiou for their part in this resolution, which brings to a close a lengthy period of uncertainty. “This settlement allows us to look to a new era of financial stability, which should be celebrated by all connected to Cardiff City. “I am delighted, primarily for the supporters of this great club that we can put this matter firmly behind us and plan for our future with confidence.” Hammam will become an honorary life president of the club, while his representative Filiou has taken a place on the board. “This resolution will rightly be regarded as a proud and historic occasion for all associated with Cardiff City Football Club,” said Hammam. “Now that an amicable agreement has been reached, thanks in most part to the vision of Tan Sri Vincent Tan and the important role of Michael Isaac and Michael Filiou, the club can now focus on the exciting Premier League season ahead, while building for the future with optimism.” Tan claimed last week that once an agreement with Langston was secured he would look to convert the substantial amount he is owed by the club into equity in order to ensure Cardiff become debt free. The debt to Swiss-based financial company Langston, of whom former Bluebirds chief Sam Hammam is a representative, was taken out in 2004 and was believed to be worth £24million. Cardiff’s most recent financial figures showed the club were £83million in debt. center_img Cardiff have reached an “amicable resolution” with creditors Langston Corporation over the club’s longstanding debt.last_img read more