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Some links concerning harrassment of journalists and news related bloggers

Monday, 14 January 2013

Bombs explode outside Greek journalists’ homes

SEEMO expresses alarm at continuing incidents of violence

By: SEEMO Staff

Dogs stand at the burnt entrance of a building following a series of arson attacks against journalists in Athens on Jan. 11, 2013. Small makeshift bombs exploded early on Friday outside the Athens homes of five Greek journalists working for major media outlets, in an apparent protest over coverage of events linked to the country’s economic crisis, police said. REUTERS/John Kolesidis

VIENNA, Jan 14, 2013 – The Vienna-based South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), an affiliate of the International Press Institute (IPI), said today that it was alarmed at reports of bombs being placed outside the homes of a number of journalists in Athens, Greece, last Friday.

Small homemade bombs, made with the use of gas canisters, exploded in the early morning hours in front of the homes of five Greek journalists in the Athens districts of Lykavittos, Agia Paraskevi, Alimos, Maroussi and Penteli.

According to the Greek authorities, the journalists targeted included Antonis Liaros, George Oikonomeas, Antonis Skyllakos, Petros Karsiotis and Chris Konstas. In each case, the explosion damaged the entrance of the building, but no one was injured. In the case of Oikonomeas, the attack was in front of his former residence.

The anarchist group “Lovers of Lawlessness” said the attacks were made to protest coverage of the country’s financial crisis seen as sympathetic to the government.

Simos Kedikoglou, a Greek government spokesman, said on Friday: “This is an attempt to openly terrorise the media, a vital part of our democracy.” He noted that the attacks came a day after protesters barged into a radio station.

Yesterday, the home of the spokesman’s brother, George Kedikoglou, was targeted by a group of unknown perpetrators who broke a window of the residence and threw in a Molotov cocktail, starting a small fire.

“This is a new, worrying escalation of violence against media and journalists in Greece,” SEEMO Secretary General Oliver Vujovic said. “SEEMO is alarmed at the number of violent cases and different forms of pressure directed at journalists in Greece over the past 12 months.”

According to SEEMO, there were 38 cases of press freedom violations or attacks on journalists in Greece in 2012. SEEMO today renewed calls on authorities in Athens to urgently investigate the attacks and to find the perpetrators and any masterminds.

Ahmed Mansoor on blogging his way into a UAE prison

Published on: October 18, 2012

One of the United Arab Emirate’s most prominent human rights activists, Ahmed Mansoor was imprisoned in 2011 for criticising the country’s leadership. Here he discusses the death threats, defamation campaigns and physical attacks he continues to face for speaking his mind.

Video here

Continue reading

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Shepperdine Against Nuclear Energy to go to Westminster


Shepperdine Protest to go to Westminster 29 January 2013

Shepperdine Against Nuclear Energy , a key Non Governmental Organisation in the South Glos area will be represented by Reg Illingworth at the very important seminar detailed below.
Reg says “We want people to realise that the fuel poor in the UK will end up paying extortionate amounts of subsidy to Japanese companies”
“We are concerned about who Hitachi will partner as the operator in this venture at Oldbury? Will they be Chinese, Russian or from the Middle East, we really need to know this for safety locally and for Britains energy policy going forwards”
We will have a new banner in English and Japanese requesting that Hitcachi should not build another Fukushima in England
We will be meeting at around 3pm to allow for photo opportunities with members of our group and others concerned about new nuclear.
If you want to contact us please email or phone Reg on 07979 569063 anytime
An APPCCG and Nuclear Consulting Group Event
UK Energy Bill and New Nuclear
4:30 – 5:30 pm, Committee Room 8,
House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA
The future of the UK’s energy supply is very much in transition and the long awaited Energy Bill sets out the Government’s strategy, including a role for new nuclear. Will the impact of the Bill shift the economic risk of reactorconstruction from the nuclear corporations to the consumer? Will the Bill lead to issues of state aid and place the UK in contravention with the EU Electricity Directive? Or will this new market-based approach deliver certainty for energy investors and fairness for consumers?
The by invitation only seminar has cross-party sponsorship: from Alan Whitehead MP (Member, Energy and Climate Change Committee), Simon Hughes MP (Deputy Leader Lib-Dem Party), Dan Byles MP (Member, Energy and Climate Change Committee), Caroline Lucas MP (Member of Parliament’s Environmental Audit Committee).
Co-hosted by The All Party Parliamentary Group on Climate Change (APPCCG) and the Nuclear Consulting Group (NCG), the event will hear expert opinion from:
• Hergen Haye, Head of New Nuclear & Strategy, DECC.
• Prof. Tom Burke CBE, Founding Director of E3G, Centre for Law and Environment, UCL.
• Dr. Nigel Knee, Head of Nuclear Policy, Nuclear New Build, EDF.
• Prof. Steve Thomas, Professor of Energy Policy,University of Greenwich.
Panel Chair: Joan Walley MP (Chair, Environmental Audit Select Committee)

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Fukushima radiation in seafood chain – record level in rockfish

radiation-in-sea--food-chaiRecord cesium levels measured in Fukushima rockfish, signaling radiation woes in food chain far from over in Japan, Part of: Nuclear meltdown in Japan Less than two months shy of the second anniversary of the devastating triple nuclear meltdown at Japan’s coastal Fukushima Daiichi plant, a fish containing more than 2,500 times Japan’s legal limit for radiation has been caught by the plant’s operator in waters near the wrecked facility. Bellona,  Charles Digges, 21/01-201

The ‘murasoi’ fish, similar to a rockfish – indicating an amount of cesium measuring 254,000 Becquerel per kilogram, or 2,540 times Japans limit for radiation in seafood – was caught at a port inside the plant by its owner, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) Friday, according to AFP.

The utility also released a photo of the fish, caught near an unloading point north of the No. 1 through No. 4 reactors. No fishermen operate in the nuclear plant’s port.

Friday’s catch shatters the previous record for wildlife contamination as a result of radioactive contamination, which was was 25,800 Becquerel of cesium per kilogram found in two greenlings caught about 20 kilometers north of the plant in August 2012, the Asashi Shimbun newspaper reported.

Other countries are also increasingly distressed by the amount of irradiated marine life turning up near their coastlines along the Pacific Rim: Over the summer, Russia’s state English language television station RT reported concern over fish caught off its coast near Japan.

In May, a tuna contaminated by low levels of radiation was found near the California coast, Reuters reported…….

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Fukushima 2013, Japan, oceans | Leave a comment

Japan’s nuclear utilities buy the silence of communities

“This structure of dependency makes it impossible for communities to speak out against the plants or nuclear power,”

Japanese nuclear plant operators charge over 90 million dollars per year to pay local authorities  A report by NHK has shown that operators of nuclear power plants in Japan charge the public users over 90 million dollars per year, in order to cover payments made to local authorities in the areas which host the nuclear sites.  Last year, the central government announced that it did not consider these charges as an expense, and that it would no longer allow utilities to charge users to cover them.

Osaka University Professor Tatsuo Hatta says utilities may be able to find other ways to compensate themselves for the payments, and is calling for further transparency.

Kansai Electric has been charging their users around 40 million dollars per year, TEPCO charges around 22 million, Kyushu charges around 10 million, Chugoku charges about 8 million, and Chubu charges about 4 million. Continue reading

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Japan, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Gross contradiction: Germany stopping domestic nuclear power, but promoting it overseas

“a gross contradiction, that we are pushing forwards with the change in energy generation while supporting atomic energy abroad.”

Germany still supports foreign nuclear power
 21 Jan 13 Despite the German government’s dedication to ridding the country of nuclear power, it will continue to use public money to guarantee the construction of such power stations in other countries, it was reported at the weekend. The parliamentary committee for sustainable development voted unanimously at the end of last year to recommend the government stop financial backing for foreign atomic energy projects.

But it is set to receive a letter from Economy Minister Philipp Rösler, rejecting such a strategy, Der Spiegel magazine reported on Sunday.

The change in energy policy only applies to domestic production, the letter says. The government considers it a “sovereign decision of other states to choose a different construction for their own energy policy.”

Chairman of the committee, Andreas Jung, from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union, said it was “a gross contradiction, that we are pushing forwards with the change in energy generation while supporting atomic energy abroad.”

The government is currently promoting its policy with the slogan, “High time that something changed”, while Environment Minister Peter Almaier has been talking of establishing an international club of countries stepping away from nuclear energy.

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Germany, marketing of nuclear, politics | Leave a comment

Re-colonisation of Africa in grab for uranium and other resources

 it’s a uranium issue and how France needs uranium there. And Mali is a big producer of uranium. There are resources there. So, I think France – this is very clear – has economic reasons.

‘Al-Qaeda threat used by NATO as smoke screen for re-colonization of Northern Africa’, RT 21 Jan 13,  The UK is providing logistical air assistance, while the United States is providing surveillance and other intelligence help.

Washington also announced it will supply transport planes for French forces and consider sending refueling tankers for French warplanes.

Canada has joined with the allies to support the on-going military intervention by dispatching a heavy-lift military transport. The country is also making an indirect contribution by training counter-terrorism operatives in neighboring Niger.

Italy is ready to offer logistical support for air operations, but it will not be joining French troops on the ground. The country’s defense Minister Giampaolo Di Paola told the Senate on Wednesday that Italy’s offer was confined to air operations only.

Journalist Neil Clark told RT he believed economic reasons were behind every single western military adventure of the last 30 years – and Mali was no different. Continue reading

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Mali, politics international, Uranium | 1 Comment

AUDIO: Nuclear Regulatory Commission prevents public participation in nuclear re-licensing process

Hear-This-wayAUDIO   THE GAMES PEOPLE PLAY In this week’s podcast, Fairewinds looks at how difficult it is for the public to meaningfully participate in the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s licensing process.  Arnie Gundersen was retained by Friends of the Earth to assess major problems at the San Onofre nuclear plant in California that have caused a year long shutdown.  Arnie met with the NRC this week concerning  his analysis of what went wrong and how the problems were foreseeable.  In this podcast, Arnie discusses how the NRC and Southern California Edison deliberately withheld information to make his technical analysis more difficult to accomplish.  Fairewinds taped the meeting, so our podcast listeners can hear for themselves the difficulties Arnie encountered and the games the NRC and Southern California Edison played to prevent his participation.

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Resources -audiovicual | Leave a comment

NRC process designed to freeze the public out

Gundersen,-Arnie-1Gundersen: Top NRC official fell asleep during my presentation — “His eyes were rolling back and his head was bobbling like a little bobble doll” — Process designed to freeze public out (AUDIO)
 January 21st, 2013
Title: The Games People Play
Source: Fairewinds Energy Education
Date: Jan. 20, 2013
Description: […] Arnie Gundersen […] met with the NRC this week concerning his analysis of what went wrong and how the problems were foreseeable. In this podcast, Arnie discusses how the NRC and Southern California Edison deliberately withheld information to make his technical analysis more difficult to accomplish. […]

Transcript Excerpt

Nuclear Expert Arnie Gundersen, Fairewinds Energy Education:: During the hearing the first in command, the chairman, actually fell asleep during the middle of my presentation. His eyes were rolling back and his head was bobbling like a little bobble doll. Then the second in command kept saying, “I’m on the clock. I have to get this resolved really quickly. Are you done giving us information? How much more information are you going to give before I have to make my decision?”

So it was very frustrating. Basically I came away with the conclusion that the NRC basically already made up their mind, and no matter how much new information we brought to the table, we were not going to succeed.

[…] That’s the problem with the NRC and this whole process, the public is designed to be frozen out.

 Full program here

January 23, 2013 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

New safety regulations for Japanese nuclear reactors: in force from July

Japanese nuclear regulators present new safety measures THE HINDU, TOKYO, JAN 21Japan’s nuclear regulators on Monday presented a draft outline of new safety measures to prevent or minimise the consequences of severe accidents like Fukushima nuclear disaster.

Among other features, the Nuclear Regulation Authority said utilities will be required to build a special safety facility housing a secondary control room for reactor operations to guard against accidents from natural disasters or acts of terrorism, such as intentional aircraft crashes.

Japan’s new nuclear safety standards are expected to come into force in July, replacing the current ones that proved insufficient in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster.

The implementation of new safety standards is a major precondition for Japanese power companies to apply for government permits to put their idled reactors back online…… Continue reading

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Japan, Religion and ethics | Leave a comment

Money pours into Virginia Assembly from uranium company

money-lobbyingUranium firm pumps money into assembly BY MARY BETH JACKSON, The Register & Bee, 21 Jan 13,  The Senate bill proposing to lift the moratorium on uranium mining will be considered by a committee in which 80 percent of its members have taken money from Virginia Uranium.

Sen. John Watkins has said the legislation, filed Friday with the Senate Clerk, will be vetted through the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee; 12 of 15 committee members have accepted campaign money and trips from Virginia Uranium since 2008.

Virginia Uranium wants to mine a 119-million-pound uranium ore deposit in Pittsylvania County, approximately six miles from Chatham. The company has been lobbying the legislature to write regulations for uranium mining and milling, which would effectively lift a 1982 moratorium on the industry. Continue reading

January 23, 2013 Posted by | politics, Uranium, USA | Leave a comment

NRC knew years ago of the flood danger to nuclear reactors

An Early Nuclear Warning: Was It for Naught? NYT, By MATTHEW L. WALD January 22, 2013,  The accident at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi plant in 2011 alerted the American nuclear industry and its regulators to the possibility that operators at plants with more than one reactor might have to deal with more than one meltdown at a time in a flood, earthquake or other catastrophe. Officials are now working to assure that they could master that situation.

But documents uncovered by a group that is critical of nuclear safety show that a high-level safety analyst at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission posed the possibility to his superiors in July 2007, about four years before the earthquake and tsunami that led to three simultaneous meltdowns at Fukushima Daiichi. The documents also show that in August 2008, the commission staff formally acknowledged the issue.

But until Japan’s disaster, progress in the American nuclear industry was glacial. Dave Lochbaum, a nuclear expert at the Union of Concerned Scientists, which uncovered the documents, compares them to records located after the crash of the space shuttle Columbia in which engineers voiced concern that debris falling during a launch could damage an orbiter.

Action to prepare for a dual meltdown was not a case of “forewarned is forearmed,’’ he said, but more like “forewarned is forestalled.’’

The warning, which now seems prophetic, predicted “common cause failures,’’ meaning single events that disable different pieces of equipment that are supposedly independent and nearly invulnerable to failing simultaneously on their own. The risk analyst, Richard Sherry, wrote that flooding or earthquakes could disrupt both normal grid power and emergency backup power……

January 23, 2013 Posted by | safety, USA | Leave a comment

France reviewing its nuclear deal with China

France says review of China nuclear relations “normal” Jan 21, 2013 By Lucy Hornby BEIJING (Reuters– France’s Trade Minister Nicole Bricq said on Monday a decision by her country’s new government to review the country’s nuclear cooperation with China was a regular process and was “normal”.

At the end of December, Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici said France was investigating a nuclear partnership deal between EDF and Chinese nuclear utility China Guangdong Nuclear Power Corporation Holding (CGNPC).

That investigation is looking into why the deal initially excluded French nuclear reactor maker Areva and at the extent to which French strategic interests could be at risk…… On Tuesday, Bricq will visit two next-generation EPR reactors being built by French utility EDF and by CGNPC in Taishan, Guangdong province.

The EPR reactors, designed by Areva, are the latest in commercial reactor design and none is in operation so far.

Areva is building one in Finland and EDF one in France but both are years behind schedule and billions over budget. France’s nuclear export drive has been hurt by the lack of a working model.

“It is best to have a working reactor as we pursue other potential contracts,” Bricq said.

Bricq played down concerns about Chinese irritation over the French investigation, as Moscovici did during his visit to Beijing two weeks ago…. Asked about an EDF-CGNPC project to build a new type of 1000 megawatt reactor for the Chinese market, smaller than Areva’s 1600 megawatt EPR, Bricq said that it was important to first complete the two Taishan plants.

“We can’t go too fast…The first priority is to finish this project,” she said. …

January 23, 2013 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

20,000 Tons of nuclear waste coming from Italy to Utah

Plan to Import 20,000 Tons of Italian Nuclear Waste into Utah Approved by US Gov Tree Hugger,  Brian Merchant 21 Jan 13Here’s a troubling plan—the ironically named US company EnergySolutions is seeking approval to import 20,000 tons of radioactive waste from Italy. The waste would be processed in Tennessee, then shipped on over to Utah, where it would be buried in the desert. Given that Yucca Mountain is such a controversial issue, it’s surprising that this plan—which the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission says it won’t halt—isn’t more hotly debated. Can this caravan of nuclear waste be stopped?Two US Representatives are attempting to do exactly that—they’re sponsoring a bill that would ban foreign radioactive waste from being imported into the US unless it was for a “strategic national purpose,” according to the AP.

They argue that the US should restrict its nuclear storage space to waste created domestically. But their bill has yet to even have a hearing, and it looks like the foreign waste plan is set to go ahead: the NRC says that it doesn’t have the authority to restrict foreign radioactive materials from being imported. They don’t “distinguish between domestic and foreign waste.” Furthermore, the agency has determined that

“as long as the material can be imported safely and someone is willing to accept it, the commission can’t keep the waste out.” EnergySolutions has agreed to limit 5% of their storage space to foreign radioactive waste—but the company’s storage site is already responsible for 36 states’ waste. And it seems a case like this could set a precedent, and maybe even open up a floodgate of tricky, potentially dangerous situations. If importing nuclear waste becomes legally recognized—and profitable—as a sound business practice, it could become a nightmare (not to mention a huge environmental concern) to regulate.

What’s more, it’s widely known that EnergySolutions is a major contributor to the Republican Party in Utah (the vast political majority in the state), and there are allegations that the company has promised to donate 50% of the revenue generated to the state. This certainly muddies up the issue….

January 23, 2013 Posted by | USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Japanese Journalist: “We must know that we are responsible for committing such a huge crime to contaminate the world” (VIDEO)

Published: January 22nd, 2013 at 11:28 pm ET

Title: Tent Color :Journalist Satoshi Kamata
Uploaded by: tentcolor1
Date Filmed: Jan 11, 2013
Date Published: Jan 22, 2013

At 4:00 in

Journalist Satoshi Kamata: We must know that we are responsible for committing such a huge crime to contaminate the world and the international society.

And so this is our way to reflect our deeds and our actions that have made us believe all these big lies. We are going to make utmost effort to participate in the anti-nuclear movement.

This is our way to express our responsibility to the international society and the world.

We know that were responsible for contaminating any genetics to the small corners of the world

For committing such a crime, we have to make a commitment to eliminate all the nuclear plants in the world.

Video on link..

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ukraine -DONATE: Help Save an ICHF Cardiac Catheterization Lab!


January 14 · Posted to International Children’s Heart Foundation (ICHF)

The International Children’s Heart Foundation program in Kharkiv, Ukraine is in dire need of a piece of equipment that is on the verge of failing. This equipment is called an image intensifier, a tube that helps produce fuller, more complete images of children’s hearts. Without this device the ability of ICHF doctors is diminished to offer complete and thorough diagnostics for children.

“Basically, the program shuts down,” said ICHF Biomedical engineer, David Wieduwilt. “If this device goes out there will be no invasive, no exploratory, no interventional procedures of any kind.”

The loss of this device would be devastating to the Kharkiv Department of Cardiac Surgery. The next Babyheart mission is scheduled for January 26th – February 9th. We hope the image intensifier will last through this mission but we are unsure about the remainder of the year.

The cost of a new image intensifier is well beyond ICHF”s financial capabilities but through our medical device and hospital partners it is possible to purchase a used one for $7,400. If all of ICHF’s 16,000 Cause Followers chipped in less than $0.75 each we would easily reach our goal!

The Kharkiv program has come so far toward saving lives and almost being completely sustainable, fulfilling the ICHF mission, that we can’t stop now! Please read the blog below from Dr. Christian Gilbert, ICHF Associate Medical Director, about the Kharkiv program and it’s life-saving mission.

There are 3 Babyheart Missions scheduled for 2013 which means 60 operations for children in desperate need. Please help us fulfill our commitment to these children and their families and give them new life.

Source :

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment