Reporter arrested over bullet-proof vest in topsy-turvy Thailand

first_img RSF_en Bullet-proof vests are meant to save your life but in Thailand they can get you arrested, as Hong Kong-based photo-journalist Hok-chun “Anthony” Kwan learned when officials at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport found a bullet-proof vest and helmet in his bags as he was about to fly home on 23 August. ThailandAsia – Pacific Covid-19 emergency laws spell disaster for press freedom August 26, 2015 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Reporter arrested over bullet-proof vest in topsy-turvy Thailand The authorities arrested Anthony Kwan on a charge of “possessing an illegal weapon” and, for the time being, are preventing him from returning to Hong Kong.Bullet-proof vests and helmets are regarded as controlled military equipment under Thailand’s 1987 Arms Control Act and users are supposed to have a licence issued by the defence ministry. The law is nonetheless rarely applied to the many reporters who use bullet-proof vests while covering Thailand’s frequent political protests.Kwan was freed on bail on the afternoon of 24 August but his passport has been confiscated and he is forbidden to leave Thailand pending formal indictment. His lawyer, Pawinee Chumsri of Thai Lawyers for Human Rights, said he has been told to report to the court every 12 days until the prosecutor’s office decides whether or not to prosecute.He could be tried by a military court and is facing a possible five-year jail sentence or a fine of 50,000 bahts (about 1,230 euros).“We urge the judicial authorities to rescind the order that prevents Anthony Kwan from leaving Thailand and to drop the charges against him,” Reporters Without Borders secretary-general Christophe Deloire said.“It is unacceptable that a journalist trying to protect himself in a dangerous environment should be prosecuted in this way. Physical safety measures such as bullet-proof vests and helmets are essential for media personnel. We expect the Thai authorities to allow reporters to protect themselves instead of making protection more complicated.” Deloire added: “We also point out that journalists who apply for a licence to wear protective equipment rarely get a response from the competent government authorities, which shows that they are being hypocritical. Reporters must be able to avoid being shot like rabbits.”Kwan, 29, works for Initium Media, a Chinese-language news website based in Hong Kong. The website sent him to Bangkok to cover the aftermath of the Erawan shrine bombing, whose 22 fatal victims included two young people from Hong Kong.Media outlets and reporters were repeatedly targeted by both soldiers and demonstrators during the frequent clashes between the different political factions and the army before the May 2014 coup.Hiroyuki Muramoto, 44, a Japanese cameraman working for Reuters, was shot dead during violent clashes between the army and deposed Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s “Red Shirt” supporters in Bangkok on 10 April 2010. Italian freelance photographer Fabio Polenghi, 45, was killed in similar circumstances on 19 May 2010. Neither was wearing a bullet-proof vest.The situation of foreign journalists has been very precarious in Thailand since the military coup. They have reported finding it increasingly difficult to obtain or renew work visas and accreditation, while the Foreign Correspondent’s Club of Thailand has been the target of repeated pressure and intimidation by the junta.Media personnel, especially foreign investigative reporters, were already exposed to threats before the military takeover, but the threats have been exacerbated by the political tension created by the military.Thailand is ranked 134th out of 180 countries in the 2015 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index. Thai premier, UN rapporteurs asked to prevent journalists being returned to Myanmar News News News Red alert for green journalism – 10 environmental reporters killed in five years ThailandAsia – Pacific to go further Receive email alerts Follow the news on Thailand Help by sharing this information May 12, 2021 Find out more August 21, 2020 Find out more News Organisation June 12, 2020 Find out morelast_img read more

Neymar becomes goodwill ambassador for world’s disabled

first_imgBy Stephanie NebehayGENEVA, (Reuters) – Neymar, fresh from his first win with Paris St Germain and his world-record signing for the club, became a goodwill ambassador for Handicap International yesterday, pledging to work for millions who are “less visible” but deserve equality.The Brazilian forward, whose 222 million-euro ($259.72M) signing from Barcelona this month doubled the world- record transit fee, mounted a huge statue of a chair outside the U.N. in Geneva that symbolises landmine victims.He kicked a soccer ball to fans standing below and into the U.N. grounds. Surrounded by his parents, Neymar Santos (Sr) and Nadine Santos, he wore a black baseball cap and Handicap International black t-shirt with the inscription ‘Repair Lives’.“I would like to begin by thanking you all for what you do for the least visible in the world, so they become more visible.“I have to say that I am very pleased to be here and to be the new ambassador,” the 25-year-old told a news briefing.Neymar, asked what work or field visits he planned, replied:“I hope this will be a very successful partnership and that we will be able to help a large number of people,” he said. “Millions want their rights, they want to be treated better. That’s what we are here for and that is what our aim is.”last_img read more

Jacks head to Canada for program finale

first_imgHumboldt State football will pay a visit to Simon Fraser’s home in Burnaby, B.C. on Saturday to clash with the Clan in its last game of the season and final game in program history. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m.The Lumberjacks fought hard in last weekend’s overtime game against Azusa Pacific but ultimately came up short 20-17. Three Green and Gold quarterbacks played in Saturday’s game after starter Joey Sweeney and backup quarterback Andrew Tingstad suffered injuries. Senior quarterback …last_img read more

How Did Earth Get Its Phosphorus?

first_imgThe element phosphorus is hard to get to a planet’s surface where it is needed.Phosphorus, abbreviated P with atomic number 15, is an essential element in all living organisms. How do organisms use phosphorus?Phosphorus is an essential element in nucleic acids (DNA, RNA).The energy molecule ATP has three phosphate groups. A cell spends enormous effort recycling ATP.Phosphorylation is an important regulatory step in many cell processes.Cell membranes are composed of phospholipids.Bones and tooth enamel get their hardness from hydroxyapatite, a phosphorus-containing mineral.Phosphorus is taken up by plants from the soil. Its availability can be a limiting factor in ecosystems.Lack of phosphorus can cause malnutrition.“Oxidative phosphorylation” builds ATP in cells. A chain of complex molecular machines in mitochondria and chloroplasts sets up a proton gradient by carefully extracting electrons from the digestion of our food and passing them through a sequence of reactions (the citric acid cycle), with oxygen as the final acceptor in the electron transport chain. The resulting proton gradient then powers ATP synthase, a rotary engine, that uses the energy to “snap” phosphate groups onto ADP in three reaction centers (see animation by CMI). The ATP molecules can then be sent throughout the cell to power numerous enzymatic reactions that require the energy, such as the walking kinesins that carry cargo, and the numerous enzymes that operate on DNA in the nucleus.For all its value to life, phosphorus can also be toxic. Some of the most potent neurotoxins and pesticides contain phosphorus.Molecular machines at work in a living cell (Illustra Media)A highly reactive atom, phosphorus is never found in its elemental form on earth. Its elemental abundance is one gram per kilogram in Earth’s crust, about 16 times as plentiful as copper. On our planet, most of it is found in insoluble rocks. Phosphate mines have much of the element from the decomposed remains of living organisms.It would be hard to imagine a habitable planet without phosphorus, because most astrobiologists recognize the uniqueness of nucleic acids, ATP and phospholipids for cells. So this poses a question: how did Earth become blessed with so much of this element?Planetary Sources of PhosphorusAn article on NASA’s Astrobiology Magazine purports to tell us “How Phosphorus Came In from the Cold.” Below the pretentious headline of this just-so story, we begin to see problems: “phosphorus is rare” in interplanetary dust clouds. “It is even more scarce in the rest of the Solar System,” Sarah Wild writes. “Phosphorus is one of the key elements in biology,” says Matthew Pasek, an astrobiologist and geochemist at the University of South Florida.Unlike the other elements essential for life, phosphorus is mainly found in solid form, whereas the likes of hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen are often found as a gas. “[Studying phosphorus] keeps us grounded in actual hard rock samples. Unlike the others, there is no obvious gas form, so has to come from rock sources,” Pasek says. “We hope to tie that eventually to biology and life.”Some meteorites contain phosphorus. The problem, then, is how to get those rocks to Earth in sufficient quantities to season the crust with it. Secular cosmologists believe that all the elements beyond lithium (atomic number 3) were “cooked” by supernovae. Phosphorus, therefore, had to come from a supernova, then get incorporated into interstellar dust clouds, from which they believe planetary systems were made. Pasek worries, though, in his recent paper in Icarus, that “Phosphorus would not have been present as a volatile throughout much of the Solar nebula.”Through a convoluted series of steps, Pasek brings phosphorus in from the cold outer reaches of the solar system by suggesting that it existed in a rare gaseous form called phosphine (PH3) in the cold outer reaches of the Solar System beyond Saturn. (Out to Saturn, it would have been locked up in solids.) From there, Pasek has the problem of getting that phosphide gas to Earth. Also, meteorites from those far reaches could have brought phosphorus to Earth in the form of phosphides. How they could have been distributed equally on the early earth was not addressed.One critic of Pasek’s model says that it is “contentious that gas movement toward the Sun, which was not modeled in the paper, could be faster than the diffusion of gas away from the Sun.” It would seem that the latter would predominate.This is an ongoing problem for astrobiologists, in other words. But it’s fun to get paid for thinking about problems that may not have a naturalistic solution. “The work was supported through NASA’s Emerging Worlds Program,” the article ends. “NASA Astrobiology provides resources for this and other Research and Analysis programs within the NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) that solicit proposals relevant to astrobiology research.” NASA money, of course, is taxpayer money.Maybe we need to add another zone to our list of habitable zones: the “Phosphorus Availability Zone.” But this is only a problem for materialists. The Creator tells us in His word that He “made the world to be inhabited” (Isaiah 45:18). Obviously he put the ingredients required for life where they were needed, in the abundances required.See more about habitability requirements in Dr Henry Richter’s book, Spacecraft Earth: A Guide for Passengers, chapter one.For earlier articles on phosphorus and biology, see:Most exoplanets are not habitable (26 June 2018)Why astrobiologists hammer planets (26 Sept 2016)Fooling around with OOL (31 May 2010).Invent animals: Just add phosphorus (11 June 2007)or search on “phosphorus” in the search bar. (Visited 490 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Without a nation there is nothing to brand

first_imgNation branding challenges and successes faced by Eastern European countries such as Ukraine, Bulgaria and Kosovo, in the wake of political and social change in the region since 1989, were held up as lessons in nation branding.Professor Nadia Kaneva offered the analysis in a presentation titled “The branded national imagination and its limits: Insights from the post-socialist experience” given at a Brand South Africa Competitiveness Forum for South African academia. Held at the University of Pretoria, Tshwane, on 5 October 2016, the forum aimed at in-depth analysis of global and domestic issues influencing the reputation and competitiveness of the nation’s brand.“As communism was ending, the Romanian flag allowed for a discourse around the future of the Nation” says Dr. Nadia Kaneva @Brand_SA forum pic.twitter.com/31tJ98AQhF— Guido van Garderen (@GuidovGarderen) October 5, 2016Presenting at the event were key academics in the fields of business, humanities and political science, from a host of South African universities and tertiary institutions.The goal of the dialogue is to compile all presentations and contributions into a peer-reviewed journal, with a view to positioning South Africa as a thought leader in nation branding. Key to the success of that journal will be the keynote contribution from Kaneva.Bulgarian-born Kaneva is an associate professor in the University of Denver’s media, film and journalism faculty. She is a globally respected and widely published researcher who uses critical sociology and media studies to dissect the commercialisation of politics and culture in Eastern Europe through nation branding and reputation-building.Kaneva’s ultimate conclusion – that in order to be more effective, an imagined nation brand should align closer to and more realistically to the changes in the nation and its people – was honed through extensive research on radical changes in Romania after the fall of communism, post-conflict Kosovo during the 2000s and the relationship between Ukraine and Russia as recently as three years ago.The lessons learnt in the research can be just as easily applied to any nation brand, especially for emerging economies like South Africa, she says.In introducing Kaneva, University of Pretoria deputy dean of humanities Professor Maxi Schoeman highlighted the importance of getting an outsider view on building South Africa’s brand internationally, someone objective enough to weigh up the differences and similarities between the country and nations with similar histories.The science and application of nation branding was now very much part of mainstream academia and an essential tool for governance, Kaneva said at the start of her presentation. As a legitimate interdisciplinary field, the study of nation branding included elements of media and marketing ideas, anthropological study, business theory and sociology.Yet, Kaneva argued, developing and managing a national brand and reputation would always be a highly political and therefore delicate process, the success of which did not always lie in the area of savvy marketing or critical theory.This was evident in post-socialist Eastern Europe countries experiencing the swift changes of political and economic experiments, Kaneva said.Extensive global multichannel marketing campaigns by Romania and Kosovo highlighted each country’s promise in its people and economics in a vastly depoliticised way, focusing on things such as tourism and investment and replacing a more realistic national identity with something more market-oriented, in other words, what “the outside world wanted to see”.In 2009, two years after gaining independence, Kosovo’s first attempt at marketing the country to the outside world was in the form of a television commercial, The Young Europeans. While carrying a positive message of reconciliation and cultural tolerance as well as an eagerness to partake economically in the European Union, it told little about the country and its people to outsiders (investors, tourists) that would differentiate it from any other European nation.While initially successful, there was a negative reaction from citizens, who felt misrepresented by this imagined nation brand. As Kaneva says, a rejection of idealised, imagined branding is ultimately counter-productive to what a country brand really wants to achieve.Watch The Young Europeans:At the crux of the argument, Kaneva says, is honesty with the nation brand, creating an identity that can actually be recognised by the people it is supposed to be representing.Offering solutions to link the imagined nation brand closer to reality, Kaneva highlighted the following:Recognise that nation branding has a political element and embrace it, with all its shortcomings and diversities.Invest in programmes and policy that encourages and grows both citizen engagement and development in the nation and its brand: let people inform the national message.Look beyond the data of perception ratings to formulate effective nation brand evaluation and measurement: outside views, particularly those formulated with data, are important, but other research models are necessary to get the complete picture of a nation.Diminish the focus and use of transnational mass media nation brand advertising; look to niche marketing opportunities for creating a truer, most consistent national image and reputation.Concluding her presentation, Kaneva said that reconstructing and refreshing national identities, particularly for nations with a history of significant political and societal transformation, should always consider the transformations of the people it represented, adding that, “without a nation there will be nothing to brand”.Download full presentationSouthAfrica.info reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SouthAfrica.info materiallast_img read more

Harvest continues Between the Rows

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Jevon Rockwell, Erie CountyWe’ve been really moving along now. We have 800 acres of beans off. The first beans we cut were in the mid-40 range and those were our worst. Since then we have been in the mid-60 range and we did have a 45-acre field average 84 bushels and those were weighed across the scale.In some places on the lighter ground or gravel ridges it seems like the beans died off and then started re-growing. The beans themselves are dry but some of the stems are green. I think those beans got too dry and stalled out for a while then started re-growing. These late rains and nice weather we have had, though, helped them even out and they are easy harvesting now.Either today or tomorrow we are going to get wheat planted. Sitting in line at the elevator has been eating up my schedule as far as getting wheat planted. Probably tomorrow I’ll get it planted.We have not touched any corn yet. We have been cutting about 200 acres of beans a day so in about three days we’ll be done with beans. We’ll go right into corn. A lot of it is starting to break over. I was next to a corn field yesterday cutting beans and you could see corn down pretty bad. It is time to get going with the corn.We have been moving right along. It is good to have nice weather.For the rest of this week’s reports, click here.last_img read more

Sales Is the Free Exchange of Value

first_imgImagine someone has something that you want or need. You want to acquire what is that they have, meaning it has value to you. But it also has value to the person who presently possesses it. Some laws prevent you from taking it from them under cover of darkness—or by force.What are you to do in this situation?Wait. You have an idea. You have something of value that you would be willing to exchange for the object of your desire. If the person who has what you want would trade what they have for something they value equally (or more), an exchange is possible. Maybe even likely.This is sales. It is the free exchange of value between willing parties. Neither party is compelled or forced to make an exchange of the value they possess or create, regardless of how much another party may want or need it.Both parties are capable of influencing the other party to believe there is more value in what they have, with one side building up the value and offering what they have for a certain price, the other side working to suggest that it isn’t worth the asking price and offering less to obtain it.Who determines what something is worth? It may be true that the person possessing a thing being sold sets the price based on what they are willing to accept. However, it is equally true that the buyer sets the price because they have the power to choose not to pay the asking price and walk away or find an alternative.Where more value is created, more value is captured. Where less value is created, less value is captured. Value is in the eye of the possessor and the beholder, which means I may believe something is valuable that you think is worthless. What is important enough for you to spend a great fortune to obtain might be something that wouldn’t move me to act at all.When people believe that the word “sales” has a negative connotation, recognize that none of us would have anything that we want without these fundamental ideas being in place as far back as when Grok had two woolly mammoth steaks, and Glub could make a fire. Get the Free eBook! Want to master cold calling? Download my free eBook! Many would have you believe that cold calling is dead, but the successful have no fear of the phone; they use it to outproduce their competitors. Download Nowlast_img read more

DeMarcus Cousins fouls out of Warriors debut in win over Clippers

first_imgTS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening LATEST STORIES SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Curry scored 14 of Golden State’s 29 points in the third, including their final eight for an 81-72 lead.Tobias Harris led the short-handed Clippers with 28 points. Rookie guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander tied his career high with 24 in their season-worst fifth straight loss. They played without injured Lou Williams, and Danilo Gallinari left with lower back spasms.Cousins picked up his third foul 32 seconds into the second quarter. Then he hit a 3-pointer for the Warriors’ first basket of the period, bringing loud cheers from their many fans at Staples Center.Cousins missed his first shot but came right back with a one-handed slam off Durant’s bounce pass for the Warriors’ first basket. Cousins was called for two fouls in the first three minutes and sat down.The Warriors took their first double-digit lead in the first four minutes of the third when the Clippers missed their initial six shots. Golden State opened on a 14-2 run with five different players scoring, including a basket by Cousins before getting his fourth foul, to go up 66-53.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Is Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola? MOST READ Kyrie Irving stays hot with 38 points, leads Celtics to close win over Grizzlies Golden State Warriors center DeMarcus Cousins, center, dunks as Los Angeles Clippers forward Tobias Harris, left, and Warriors forward Draymond Green watch during the first half of an NBA basketball game Friday, Jan. 18, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)LOS ANGELES — Stephen Curry scored 28 points, DeMarcus Cousins added 14 before fouling out of his Warriors debut after being sidelined for nearly a year, and Golden State pulled away in the third quarter to beat the Los Angeles Clippers 112-94 on Friday night for its seventh straight victory and sixth in a row on the road.The Warriors shot just 9 of 37 on 3-pointers on a night when Curry made only three from long range. Fellow Splash Brother Klay Thompson missed all four of his 3-point attempts.ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Cousins shot 5 for 11 from the floor and finished with six rebounds and three assists during his first game since Jan. 26, 2018, when he ruptured his left Achilles tendon playing for New Orleans. He missed the rest of last season, including nine playoff games for the Pelicans. The Warriors signed him last July.With Cousins finally in the lineup, Golden State became the first team in 42 years to start five All-Stars from the previous season.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsInstead of his usual scowl, Cousins left the court after his sixth foul at 8:51 of the fourth smiling and high-fiving his new teammates. Curry and Kevin Durant, who scored 24 points, looked happy, too.Cousins went out with a bang. He got his fifth foul just 30 seconds into the fourth and then made two consecutive 3-pointers — holding up three fingers — that extended the Warriors’ lead to 87-72. Draymond Green got two technical fouls in the second quarter, the second one for swinging from the basket after a high-flying dunk that sent the Warriors into halftime leading 52-51.Neither team led by more than six in the first half.TIP-INSWarriors: They’re in LA for five days. “I unpacked my bag for the first time ever on a road trip,” said coach Steve Kerr, who plans to catch up with friends from San Diego during the down time. … Durant got a technical in the third. … They’ve had 10 turnovers in each of their last four games. … Lead the season series 2-1. … G Shaun Livingston, drafted fourth overall by the Clippers in 2004, visited retiring Clippers play-by-play announcer Ralph Lawler before the game. … Golden State’s longest win streak of the season is eight games from Oct. 22 to Nov. 5.Clippers: Had just 11 assists. … Gallinari scored one point in eight minutes. … Williams has a sore right hamstring. He’s the NBA’s leading bench scorer at 18.7 points per game. He missed four games last month with a sore left hamstring. … Clippers coach Doc Rivers got a technical for the second straight game. … Patrick Beverley earned a technical while on the bench. … The teams’ last regular-season meeting is April 7. … Coolio performed at halftime. Emma Stone, Jennifer Garner (who sat with team owner Steve Ballmer), Ellen Pompeo and Billy Crystal attended.UP NEXTWarriors: Play at the Los Angeles Lakers on Monday before heading East for the rest of a five-game trip.Clippers: At the San Antonio Spurs on Sunday to begin a four-game trip. View commentslast_img read more