UK general election: political party manifestos present a mixed bag for press freedom

first_img The Conservative party manifesto, launched on 18 May, contained one significantly welcome provision, which was that the party would not proceed with implementing the second stage of the Leveson Inquiry, and would repeal Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013 – both measures that RSF has campaigned for. RSF and other free expression groups viewed Section 40 as threatening to press freedom, particularly its cost-shifting provision that, if implemented, could have held publishers that did not join the state-approved regulator liable for the costs of all claims made against them, regardless of merit.In contrast, both the Labour and Liberal Democrat manifestos stated that the parties would move forward with stage two of the Leveson Inquiry.“RSF welcomes provisions in the political party manifestos that would strengthen protection of press freedom, such as the Conservatives’ plans to repeal Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013, and the Liberal Democrats’ plans to end mass snooping powers and oppose attempts to undermine encryption. However, a number of other threats to press freedom remain, and this election takes place amidst a worrying overall trend of moves to restrict the media. We call on the next government to ensure that its policies and practices contain respect for press freedom at their core”, said Rebecca Vincent, RSF UK Bureau Director.The Conservative party manifesto made it clear that plans to scrap the Human Rights Act would be revisited in the future, which would have serious implications for the protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, including press freedom. The Conservative manifesto stated that the party “will not repeal or replace the Human Rights Act while the process of Brexit is underway but we will consider our human rights legal framework when the process of leaving the EU concludes”, pledging only to “remain signatories to the European Convention on Human Rights for the duration of the next parliament”.Both Labour and the Liberal Democrats pledged to protect the Human Rights Act, with the Liberal Democrats adding they would oppose any attempts to withdraw from the European Convention on Human Rights.Also significant is the Liberal Democrats’ pledge to “roll back state surveillance powers by ending the indiscriminate bulk collection of communications data, bulk hacking, and the collection of internet connection records”, as well as “oppose Conservative attempts to undermine encryption” and “notify innocent people who have been placed under targeted surveillance where this can be done without jeopardising ongoing investigations”.These provisions align with RSF’s calls in the context of the adoption and implementation of the Investigatory Powers Act. Also known as the ‘Snoopers’ Charter’, and drafted by Theresa May when she was Home Secretary, the law has been referred to as the “most extreme surveillance legislation in UK history”, and RSF has cautioned it could serve as a potential “death sentence” for investigative journalism in the UK as it does not contain sufficient safeguards to protect whistleblowers, journalists, and their sources.Other threats to press freedom remained unaddressed in the manifestos; for example, all three parties failed to clarify their positions on the Law Commission’s alarming proposal for a new ‘Espionage Act’ that would make it easy to label journalists and others as ‘spies’ and jail them for up to 14 years for simply obtaining leaked information. RSF views this proposal as one of the most significant potential threats to press freedom in the UK.In the UK general election context, RSF has already reacted to reports of worrying treatment of journalists by the Conservative and Labour campaigns, as well as the refusal of Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn to participate in televised debates. RSF reiterates its call on all candidates to respect press freedom in their campaigning.The UK dropped two places in RSF’s 2017 World Press Freedom Index, and is now ranked 40th out of 180 countries.Press contact: Rebecca Vincent at [email protected] or +44 (0)7583 137751 Worrying moves under May’s leadership lead to dropped UK ranking in RSF’s 2017 World Press Freedom Index May 19, 2017 UK general election: political party manifestos present a mixed bag for press freedom News to go further RSF_en In the run-up to the 8 June 2017 snap general election in the UK, political parties have released manifestos outlining their plans for governing in the event they are elected. The Conservative, Labour, and Liberal Democrat party manifestos contain a number of pledges with both positive and negative implications for press freedom. Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has analysed these provisions as below. News Organisation Help by sharing this information February 14, 2017 Find out more Follow the news on United Kingdom May 11, 2017 Find out more News United KingdomEurope – Central Asia Freedom of expression News RSF urges politicians to respect press freedom in the UK general election campaign United KingdomEurope – Central Asia Freedom of expression Receive email alerts April 26, 2017 Find out more RSF alarmed by UK proposal to jail journalists as ‘spies’ for obtaining leakslast_img read more

Arlene Arkinson’s sister loses claim for damages for unlawful detention

first_img Loganair’s new Derry – Liverpool air service takes off from CODA Important message for people attending LUH’s INR clinic Arlene Arkinson’s sister loses claim for damages for unlawful detention Pinterest WhatsApp Twitter WhatsApp By News Highland – March 2, 2018 Google+ RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Twitter Arranmore progress and potential flagged as population grows center_img The sister of missing Castlederg teenager Arlene Arkinson has lost her claim for damages for the unlawful detention by the then RUC during a three day search operation of her home in April 1996.The 15 year old disappeared in 1994 after attending a disco in Bundoran.She was last seen in the company of convicted child killer Robert Howard, who died in prison in 2015.Stephen Walsh, the father of Ms. Arkinson’s four children also lost his claim for unlawful detention and a further claim for his unlawful arrest on suspicion of the murder of Arlene Arkinson.In her reserved judgement at the County Court in Derry, Judge Elizabeth McCaffrey said the background to both claims was the murder of Arlene Arkinson on August 14, 1994 after the 15 year old had returned from a nightclub in Bundoran, Co. Donegal.When the claims for damages was heard last December, a now retired police officer told Judge McCaffrey that detectives investigating the teenager’s disappearance and murder received information from a reliable source in April 1996 which necessitated the search of the plaintiffs’ home and that his particular knowledge was that Mr Walsh was complicit in the murder of Arlene Arkinson and that the body had been concealed in the rear garden.Judge McCaffrey said the source of the information, who was described as being reliable by, had stated that Arlene Arkinson died after she was either pushed or fell down the stairs during an argument after her sister Kathleen had reportedly found her in bed with Mr Walsh.She said the fact relatives of the plaintiffs and their solicitor were able to visit them in their home during the operation undermined their claims that they had been illegally detained against their will and said police were also justified in questioning Mr. Walsh on suspicion of murder, even though he was later released without charge.Kathleen Arkinson was awarded £1,500 plus interest for damages caused to her home at 26 Drumnabey Park, Castlederg by police officers searching for her missing sister’s body with a similar sum plus interest also awarded to Stephen Walsh. Facebook Homepage BannerNews Google+ Pinterest News, Sport and Obituaries on Monday May 24th Previous articleCast iron sought for NE Inishowen water upgrade – Mac LochlainnNext articleJust five people awaiting admission at LUH News Highland Nine til Noon Show – Listen back to Monday’s Programme Facebook DL Debate – 24/05/21 last_img read more

Emirates takes over the flights Dubai – Zagreb in the summer flight schedule

first_imgEmirates će nastavit letjeti na ruti Dubai – Zagreb do 26. listopada 2019. godine, nakon čega će partnerska aviokompanija flydubai preuzeti letove tijekom zimskog razdoblja. Strateško partnerstvo između dviju zrakoplovnih prijevoznika iz Dubaija osigurava adekvatan kapacitet kako bi se najbolje zadovoljile potrebe putnika. Due to the planned upgrades on the southern runway at Dubai International Airport (DXB), from April 16 to May 30, 2019, Emirates flights to Zagreb will be scheduled four times a week, on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. From 31 May 2019 onwards, there will be daily flights on the mentioned route with the same aircraft, which will offer passengers 7 weekly flights. Flight EK 129 of the Boeing 777-300ER aircraft will depart from Dubai at 8:30 am and arrive in Zagreb at 12:35 pm local time. The return flight, EK 130 will depart from Zagreb at 15:25 and arrive in Dubai at 23:00 local time.last_img read more

Wairarapa stepdad convicted for smacking toddler

first_imgWairarapa Times-Age 6 Aug 2013A dairy farmer who smacked a 2-year-old on the bottom was told by the sentencing judge that, while it was once acceptable to spank a child, it was now illegal to do so.  Jessie Wayne Smith, 26, was sentenced to supervision after pleading guilty to assault on a child, when he appeared in Masterton District Court last week.  Judge Tony Walsh said it was no longer appropriate for people to smack a child. “Years ago, no one would have turned an eye to this sort of behaviour but now we do. What you did was quite illegal.”In Smith’s case, Judge Walsh said he had gone too far when disciplining his stepson. The police summary stated that on July 13 Smith was at home with his 5-year-old daughter and his partner’s 2-year-old son. While his partner was out buying food, the 2-year-old started throwing toys around his room. Smith entered the boy’s bedroom and spoke to him about an incident earlier in the day where the boy had hit his mother. When the boy laughed at Smith, he pulled the toddler’s nappy down and smacked him on the bottom, with an open hand. The boy started throwing his toys around the room again and Smith spoke to him about mistreating his toys. The child’s response again upset Smith and he smacked him on the bottom again, leaving vivid red hand marks on his bottom which were still visible several days later, along with minor bruising. In explanation, Smith said he was upset by the boy’s lack of respect for his mother and his toys. He said he was also upset he had hit the boy as hard as he had and did not mean to. Defence lawyer Peter Stevens, on behalf of lawyer Frank Minehan, said Smith was attending a parenting programme and would be starting relationship counselling. Smith has no previous convictions for violent offending. The judge said Smith needed to “understand the law is quite clear that children cannot be subjected to this type of assault”. “It’s clear that this little boy did get a real beating from you on this occasion and this must not happen again.” read more

Egypt Foreign Ministry warns against smuggling animals, plants to China

first_imgThe Foreign Ministry has called on Egyptian citizens traveling to China not to take any rare animals or rare plants with them and to follow all proper import procedures in accordance with Chinese law, which stipulates that one must obtain a permit before exporting rare plants or animals. The Egyptian Embassy in China has recently noticed that Egyptian citizens took those items, particularly rare sea horses, as part of their personal belongings while traveling to China, which exposed them to legal accountability by the Chinese authorities, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement Monday.The punishment for smuggling any of those items into China amounts to five years in prison in China, as well as a fine, the statement added.last_img