Climate Activists Invade East German Coal Mines in Protest

Climate activists protested at open-pit coal mines in eastern Germany, pouring onto the premises to urge the government to immediately halt the use of coal to produce electricity.The news agency dpa reported that police estimated more than 2,000 people took part Saturday at sites near Cottbus and Leipzig and that some of the demonstrators scuffled with police. Three officers were reported slightly injured at the Janschwaelde mine near Cottbus. The mine operators, Leag und Mibrag, filed police reports asking for an investigation and possible charges.Burning coal releases carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas blamed by scientists for global warming. The German government plans to end the use of coal by 2038 and spend 40 billion euros ($44 billion) on assistance for the affected mining regions.

your ad here

more

Facebook Places Label on User’s Post Under Singapore ‘Fake News’ Law

Facebook said Saturday it had issued a correction notice on a user’s post at the request of the Singapore government, but called for a measured approach to the implementation of a new “fake news” law in the city-state.“Facebook is legally required to tell you that the Singapore government says this post has false information,” said the notice, which is visible only to Singapore users.The correction label was embedded at the bottom of the original post without any alterations to the text.Singapore requests noticeThe Singapore government said Friday it had instructed Facebook “to publish a correction notice” on a Nov. 23 post that contained accusations about the arrest of a supposed whistleblower and election rigging.Singapore, which is expected to call a general elections within months, said the allegations were “false” and “scurrilous” and initially ordered user Alex Tan, who runs the States Times Review blog, to issue the correction notice on the post.Tan, who does not live in Singapore and says he is an Australian citizen, refused, and authorities said he is now under investigation. Reuters could not immediately reach Tan for comment.“As required by Singapore law, Facebook applied a label to these posts, which were determined by the Singapore government to contain false information,” a spokesman for Facebook said in an emailed statement. “As it is early days of the law coming into effect, we hope the Singapore government’s assurances that it will not impact free expression will lead to a measured and transparent approach to implementation.”Some Singapore users however said that they could not see the correction notice. Facebook could not immediately explain why the notice was unavailable to some users.Blocked contentFacebook often blocks content that governments allege violate local laws, with nearly 18,000 cases globally in the year to June, according to the company’s “transparency report.”Two years in the making and implemented only last month, Singapore’s law is the first to demand that Facebook publish corrections when directed to do so by the government.The Asia Internet Coalition, an association of internet and technology companies, called the law the “most far-reaching legislation of its kind to date,” while rights groups have said it could undermine internet freedoms, not just in Singapore, but elsewhere in Southeast Asia.In the only other case under the law, which covers statements that are communicated in the country even if they originate elsewhere, opposition political figure Brad Bowyer swiftly complied with a correction request.The penalties range from prison terms of as much as 10 years or fines up to S$1 million ($733,192).

your ad here

more

Twitter CEO Pledges to Live in Africa for Several Months in 2020

Twitter Chief Executive Jack Dorsey has wrapped up of a trip to Africa by pledging to reside on the continent next year for up to six months. Dorsey tweeted this week: “Africa will define the future (especially the bitcoin one!). Not sure where yet, but I’ll be living here for 3-6 months mid 2020.”The CEO of the social media giant did not say what he planned to do on the African continent.Twitter, which is based in San Francisco, did not offer more details on Dorsey’s plans. On Dorsey’s recent trip, he visited entrepreneurs in Ethiopia, Ghana, Nigeria and South Africa. Dorsey, 43, co-founded Twitter with several other entrepreneurs in 2006. He ran the company until he was ousted in 2008 but was brought back seven years later to again lead the platform.Dorsey also co-founded the payment processing app Square and is also CEO of that operation. The tech exec holds millions of stock shares in both companies, and Forbes estimates his net worth at $4.3 billion.Twitter, along with other social media companies, has faced criticism of its handling of misinformation and has come under scrutiny ahead of next year’s U.S. presidential election. Dorsey announced in October that Twitter would ban political advertisements on the platform. 

your ad here

more

More Deaths Feared From Cholera in Cameroon

Cameroonian health and emergency personnel are working to stem a cholera outbreak that has killed at least a dozen people and sickened at least 100 others in the Bakassi Peninsula that shares a maritime boundary with Nigeria.It is feared the outbreak will claim more lives in the coastal area, which lacks health infrastructure.Emergency medical workers, together with some civilians, are working to improve hygiene and sanitation by clearing dirt and debris from water beneath houses on the shores in the area. Among them is 31-year-old Cameroonian fisherman Lucas Emimo, who says he lost his younger sister to cholera. Emimo says he has joined the humanitarian workers because he fears many more people may die from the infectious disease that causes severe watery diarrhea, leading to dehydration and even death if untreated.Dirty water flows underneath houses in Idabato, Cameroon, Nov. 28, 2019. (Moki Edwin Kindzeka/VOA)”We lack toilets, potable water,” Emimo said. “There is no hospital. People defecate beside the sea, under the houses, everywhere and so it makes the place not good to stay.”Dr. Ebongo Zakius Nandji, the area’s top health official, says humanitarian workers were deployed when news broke that people were dying and some were being rushed to hospitals. He says there is no doubt cholera is to blame.”Upon the reception of a distress signal from our team in the Bakassi health district, we came down to [the city of] Idabato, myself and my entire emergency response team,” Nandji said. “The situation on the ground really sends a pointer to the fact that we are in an outbreak of cholera.”Nandji said six people had been reported dead and hundreds of suspected cholera sufferers were still in villages around Idabato. Civilians said they had buried six others before the medical team’s arrival. The actual death toll could be higher, because many live in remote locations, complicating efforts to get accurate health data.Nandji urged people to be vigilant and report any cholera symptoms.Hospitals underusedBut the government says only 20 percent of the population visits hospitals. Most of them prefer traditional African medicine. Some complain that the only government hospital in Idabato is understaffed and lacks medication.Roland Ewane, a top Cameroonian official in Idabato, says Nigerians living in the region prefer to return to their country for health care. However, making the journey reduces chances of survival for cholera patients.A humanitarian worker disinfects homes in Idabato, Cameroon, Nov. 28, 2019. (Moki Edwin Kindzeka/VOA)”We have a population of about 40,000,” Ewane said. “They are mostly Nigerians. We have been carrying out sensitization campaigns [educating the population] on the necessity of using or the importance of using government services. One of them is the hospital. They do not come to the hospital. It is a big cry [to use hospitals].”The Bakassi Peninsula is by the sea, but potable water is hard to find. Few have toilets and the local hospital struggles to handle epidemics.Nigeria ceded full control of the Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroon in 2013, in keeping with a 2002 International Court of Justice ruling. Some 300,000 Nigerians live on the peninsula — approximately 90 percent of its population. The territory is rich in hydrocarbons and fisheries, but lacks basic social services.Most health workers trained by Nigeria to serve in the area returned to their country when Cameroon did not continue paying their salaries. Some also fled attacks by separatists fighting for the independence of Cameroon’s English-speaking regions from the French-speaking majority. Cameroon has faced difficulties replacing departed medical staff.
 

your ad here

more

UN: More than 300 Children Die Daily of AIDS-Related Causes

World AIDS Day, the annual event to raise awareness of the global epidemic, turns 31 this year. However, as longevity, treatment, and access to care improve worldwide, the United Nations Children’s Fund is sounding the alarm, reporting that more than 300 children die every day of AIDS-related causes, and is urging young people to get earlier testing and treatment. In Johannesburg, VOA’s Anita Powell met with some of the now-grown children who lived, to talk about the struggles they overcame

your ad here

more

Міжбанк: гривня йде на новий рекорд щодо долара

На українському міжбанківському валютному ринку короткочасне посилення долара знову змінилося послабленням американської валюти. Як повідомляє сайт Finance.ua, станом на 13:25 котирування становили 23 гривні 94–96 копійок.

Опівдні посилення гривні частково відбив Національний банк України у своєму довідковому значенні курсу 23 гривні 98 копійок, що на 6 копійок менше за офіційний курс на 29 листопада і є повторенням зафіксованого раніше цього тижня рекордного за 46 місяців значення.

«Торги по долару ближче до обіду на піку активності. Йдуть операції по лотах до 1 мільйона доларів при зростанні пропозиції валюти в останні 30 хвилин сесії, що поки не відбилося на котируваннях», – вказують фахівці сайту «Мінфін».

 

Надмірне посилення гривні щодо долара є не менш небезпечним, ніж стрімка девальвація національної валюти. Зокрема, посилення понад рівень, закріплений у розрахунках уряду, ставить під загрозу виконання дохідної частини державного бюджету. Саме через це НБУ, викуповуючи надлишок пропозиції долара, намагається не допустити більшого посилення гривні.

your ad here

more

Hundreds Take to Streets Urging More Action on Climate Change

Hundreds of protesters took to the streets of Sydney, Australia Friday to kick off a fresh round of global demonstrations urging more action to curb climate change. 
       
The protesters gathered outside the New South Wales Liberal Party headquarters to demand the government reject any new coal, oil or gas projects, as protesters in several other Asia-Pacific cities echoed the call to action from 16-year-old Swedish climate change campaigner Greta Thunberg.The protests in Australia are taking place as the country’s southeast has been devastated by hundreds of damaging bushfires in recent weeks.Groups of young Americans have planned a “Black Friday Strike”, from Los Angeles to New York, to boycott the celebration of consumer discount shopping and to call for changes to business-as-usual to confront the climate crisis.As protests against climate change are widening around the world on Friday analysts warn that the United Nations climate conference taking place over the coming two weeks in Madrid, Spain, will likely fall short of their expectations.

your ad here

more