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Europe

first_img Organisation Download the full version RSF calls for a fully transparent investigation after mine kills two journalists in Azerbaijan News RSF_en January 25, 2012 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Europe “We’ll hold Ilham Aliyev personally responsible if anything happens to this blogger in France” RSF says Related documents Индекс свободы прессы 2011-2012PDF – 229.8 KB June 8, 2021 Find out more News June 7, 2021 Find out more Follow the news on Europe – Central Asiacenter_img Receive email alerts June 4, 2021 Find out more Europe – Central Asia Differences increase in EuropeЧитать по-русскиEuropean Union more heterogeneous, Balkans facing EU entry challengeWhile Finland and Norway again share first place, Bulgaria (80th) and Greece (70th) have kept their status as the European Union’s bad performers. Targeted attacks and death threats against journalists marked the past year in Bulgaria, where concerns about print media pluralism grew. In Greece, the economic crisis highlighted the fragility of its media while photographers and cameramen covering demonstrations were exposed to conditions resembling war zones. Hungary fell 17 rungs to 40th place after adopting a law giving the ruling party direct control over the media and amending its constitution in December. The precedent set by this legislation, adopted with little comment from other EU member states, has further dented the European model’s credibility.France is still in a disappointing position (38th), as concern continues about protection of the confidentiality of sources and the ability of investigative journalists to cover influential figures close to the government. Italy (61st), which still has a dozen or so journalists under police protection, has turned the page on several years of conflict of interest with Silvio Berlusconi’s departure. But this year’s ranking still bears his mark, especially another attempt to introduce a gag law and an attempt to introduce Internet filtering without reference to the courts, both narrowly rejected. Against the extraordinary backdrop of the News of the World affair, the United Kingdom (28th) caused concern with its approach to the protection of privacy and its response to the London riots. Despite universal condemnation, the UK also clings to a surreal law that allows the entire world to come and sue news media before its courts.The contrast among the three Baltic countries sharpened. Estonia (3rd) stayed at the top of the index but Lithuania and Latvia fell to 30th and 50th respectively as a result of grotesque court rulings and increased interference by the security services. Relations between the government and media have improved somewhat in Slovakia (25th) since Robert Fico, who was heavy-handed in his methods and crude in his language with journalists, ceased to be prime minister.The economic crisis accentuated the Balkan media’s problems – use of the media for private or criminal interests, unfair competition in very small markets, and self-censorship by a growing number of badly paid journalists. Judicial officials – many of them poorly trained, allied with the government and often corrupt – seem more interested in harassing the media than ending impunity for those who threaten or physically attack journalists. This was the case, for example in Bosnia-Herzegovina (58th), Montenegro (107th), Albania (96th) and Macedonia (94th), which lost 40 per cent of its media with the closure of Plus Produkcija, a company that owned three dailies and the leading privately-owned TV station.Turkey back to old habits, Azerbaijan and Belarus locked into repressionTurkey continued its descent, this time falling 10 places to 148th. Despite the diversity and energy of its media, 2011 saw a dramatic escalation in the judicial harassment of journalists. Under the pretext of combating terrorism, dozens were jailed before being tried, above all in the investigations into the Ergenekon conspiracy and the KCK, an alleged political offshoot of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party. The unprecedented extension of the range of arrests, the massive phone taps and the contempt shown for the confidentiality of journalists’ sources have helped to reintroduce a climate of intimidation in the media.In Russia (142nd), the media freedom panorama continues to be gloomy. The conviction of a couple for the double murder of Anastasia Baburova and Stanislav Markelov raised hopes but aspects of the case remained unclarified and impunity is still the rule for those who murder or attack journalists. Tougher sentences for such crimes and the decriminalization of media offences were both good news but the impact of these reforms remains to be determined, especially in the absence of an overhaul of anti-terrorist legislation. The unprecedented demonstrations in December 2011 augur a period of uncertainty – while some newsrooms seem to be becoming more outspoken, the state’s repressive apparatus has so far been able to cope with the unrest.After cracking down violently on pro-democracy protests, both Belarus (168th) and Azerbaijan (162nd) have fallen sharply and are approaching the bottom of the index. Their leaders, Alexander Lukashenko and Ilham Aliyev, are both predators of press freedom and both made the media pay for the way their authority was challenged on the streets – in Belarus, more than 100 journalists and bloggers arrested (and around 30 of them given jail sentences), increased harassment of independent media and deportation of foreign journalists. Not content with this indiscriminate repression, Belarus’ self-styled “Batka” (Father) went on to turn the media into the scapegoat for all of his country’s problems. Similar methods were used in Azerbaijan, where special emphasis was put on surveillance of social networks and where netizens were jailed just for issuing online calls for demonstrations. Violence is back in a big way there, with threats, beatings, and abduction of opposition journalists and, for the first time in five years, an Azerbaijani journalist murdered.No longer the leader in the southern Caucasus, Georgia (104th) is paying the price for the violent dispersal of an opposition demonstration in May and the persistent harassment of journalists and bloggers suspected of sympathizing with Russia. Armenia’s 24-place rise in the index seems spectacular, but in fact it has just gone back to where it was three years ago, before the brutal crackdown after the disputed 2008 elections. The media are nonetheless subject to constant judicial harassment and the size of the damages demanded in lawsuits is intimidating. Self-regulation is a major challenge that still needs to be tackled.In Central Asia, Kyrgyzstan turned the page on a 2010 marked by a cruel dictatorship’s violent death throes and inter-ethnic massacres in the south and achieved the region’s best ranking (108th). The media freedom situation nonetheless continues to be very fragile, with physical attacks on journalists and repressive initiatives by parliament. It was a bad year in neighbouring Tajikistan (122nd), where the authorities continue to brandish the spectre of civil war and radical Islamism to try to gag the independent media.Kazakhstan’s ranking (154th) improved only because so many other countries plunged on the index this year. In reality, in a bid to maintain a facade of stability at all costs, the Kazakh authorities have stepped up their persecution of the few independent voices and are trying to gain control of the Internet. Online content also focused the attention of the dictatorships in Uzbekistan (157th) and Turkmenistan (177th), which made no progress. The Turkmen public have access only to a highly-censored national Intranet, but the war of information 2.0 has now begun with the few Turkmen online resources based abroad.Ukraine (116th) rose a few rungs after its all-time low in 2010, marked by journalist Vasyl Klymentyev’s disappearance, but the negative’s tendencies seen since Viktor Yanukovych’s installation as president in February 2010 – return of censorship and many physical attacks on journalists that have gone unpunished – have continued. Respect judicial independence in cases of two leading journalists in Serbia and Montenegro, RSF says News Help by sharing this information Europe – Central Asia News to go furtherlast_img read more

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Odds & Ends: Hamilton’s Heading Down Under & More

first_img Here’s a quick roundup of stories you may have missed today. What Comes Next? Hamilton’s Heading Down UnderSatisfied? Hamilton is conquering the world! Lin-Manuel Miranda’s gargantuan Broadway hit, which as previously reported will be opening in London next year, is also set to transfer to Australia and continental Europe after that. The tuner’s producer, Jeffrey Seller, confirmed the news to the New York Times, revealing that ultimately there could be as many as seven Hamilton companies, along with the one on the Great White Way.Vinyl’s Bobby Cannavale to Star Off-BroadwayOff-Broadway’s White Rabbit Red Rabbit just got even starrier! Two-time Emmy winner and Tony nominee Bobby Cannavale will perform on May 9, with Tony winner David Hyde Pierce set for May 16, Emmy winner and Oscar nominee Shohreh Aghdashloo appearing on May 23 and George Takei scheduled for June 13. The New York premiere of Nassim Soleimanpour’s solo show, which involves a different actor every performance seeing the script for the first time just before they go on stage, is playing Monday nights at the Westside Theatre.Date Set for August Wilson Monologue CompetitionKenny Leon and Jordan Roth have teamed up to bring us the Eighth Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition, which will take place on May 2 at (fittingly!) Broadway’s August Wilson Theatre. The event, which is free and open to the public, features high school students from around the country performing monologues by the late, legendary American playwright. A panel of celebrity judges will evaluate the competitors and select a winner, who is set to receive a $1500 cash prize.James Corden & Jennifer Hudson’s Cheap DuetHave we mentioned that we’re beyond excited that James Corden will host this year’s Tonys on June 12? For his latest The Late Late Show bit on April 4, the Tony winner teamed up with The Color Purple’s Jennifer Hudson to duet on some popular tunes that don’t carry a price tag. Think “London Bridges.” Check out the fun video below—Broadway’s biggest night is in the safest of hands this year. View Comments Related Shows Star Files Show Closed This production ended its run on Dec. 19, 2016center_img Jonathan Groff in ‘Hamilton'(Photo: Joan Marcus) White Rabbit Red Rabbit Bobby Cannavalelast_img read more

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Glen Head Man Nabbed in Mob-Trash Ring Bust

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A reputed Gambino crime family soldier from Glen Head is among 32 suspects federal authorities rounded up Wednesday in a massive crackdown on mob-run trash-hauling companies in New York and New Jersey.Anthony Bazzini is facing up to 40 years in prison on federal racketeering and extortion conspiracy charges. The 53-year-old suspect was scheduled to be arraigned with most of his co-defendants at Manhattan federal court.“Organized crime has many victims—in this case small business owners who pay for waste removal, potential competitors and the communities infected by this corruption and its cost,” said Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.Prosecutors and FBI investigators alleged Bazzini was among alleged mob soldiers who took control of an unnamed waste removal company that a cooperating witness had incorporated.Bazzini was involved in loansharking, mail and wire fraud and stolen property offenses in order to enhance the mob’s power, line their pockets and keep its victims in check by threatening economic and physical harm, authorities said.The suspect, who was among a dozen of the 32 defendants facing the top charges under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act, is accused of dictating which trash pick-up stops that companies could use and extorting payments in exchange for “protection.”By enforcing purported “property rights” over the routes, the suspects excluded competitors, in effect imposing a criminal tax on businesses and communities, authorities said. They also allegedly stole property of competitors and defrauded customers.Aside from the Gambino family, suspects include members and associates of the Genovese and Luchese—three of the five organized crime families of La Cosa Nostra that coordinated through the use of “sit-downs,” authorities alleged.last_img read more

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Punter Gano sets tone early in rout over Wisconsin

first_imgORLANDO, Fla. — When a team puts 42 points on the board, its punter rarely receives much praise, let alone the game’s MVP honors. Consider the Champs Sports Bowl a rarity.While the University of Wisconsin defense was shutting down quarterback Christian Ponder and the Florida State offense in the first quarter, Seminole senior punter Graham Gano was doing his best to keep the Badgers off the scoreboard, a goal he almost single-handedly achieved.Gano’s first punt bounced at the UW 3-yard line and took a right turn out of bounds. Two first downs later, the Badgers were forced to punt.Gano’s next punt sailed over David Gilreath’s head, hit at the 1-yard line and stuck on the Citrus Bowl turf. Again, the Badgers only managed a pair of first downs before being forced to surrender the ball back to the ‘Noles.Gano’s third punt of the first quarter was angled very similarly to his first, toward the front right corner of the Wisconsin end zone. The ball hit near the 1-yard line and again took a right turn out of bounds. All three of the Badgers’ first-quarter possessions started inside their 3-yard line, the last two of which were spotted at the one.“The whole first half we were battling to get past the 50-yard line,” said UW center John Moffitt. “That’s not anybody’s fault, that’s just the punter. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a punter that good.Has anybody ever kicked three inside the five before?”Interestingly enough, Gano’s feat came one game after Cal Poly kicker Andrew Gardner missed three extra points at Camp Randall Stadium in Wisconsin’s overtime victory over the Mustangs.The Badgers didn’t make it past midfield until the second quarter and failed to reach the end zone until T.J. Theus’ 20-yard grab from quarterback Dustin Sherer with only 4:06 left in the game, much of which can be attributed to Gano and his ability to shift the field position game in FSU’s favor.“It’s frustrating, but we kind of did it to ourselves,” Sherer said. “We never could get the ball moving; we gave them a short field, they could punt us and pin us deep. We got out of there a couple times, but we would shoot ourselves in the foot on third down. That’s just how it went.”It put a lot of pressure on the UW defense as well, a unit that held its own in the first half but couldn’t stay with the speed demons of the ACC after intermission.“[Gano] was definitely a factor,” said senior cornerback Allen Langford. “It affected time of possession and field position, and they definitely owned both of those and that’s why they got the ‘W.’”The Badgers stood helplessly against Gano’s (48.2 yards per punt) first-half dominance, but they beat themselves in the second half. P.J. Hill and Sherer each had fumbles that led to Seminole touchdowns after halftime. Wisconsin’s three total fumbles set a Champs Sports Bowl record and all three were converted into touchdowns, two of which were scored directly by the defense. Derek Nicholson (first quarter) and Dekoda Watson (fourth quarter) each scooped up Sherer fumbles and ran them back for scores.“They’re fast,” Sherer said. “Their defensive line did a great job of getting pressure on me; their [defensive backs] did a great job of covering downfield. There were parts where I probably should have got the ball out and didn’t, but they played well, so hats off to them.“I knew going into it I had to play well because they were going to put nine guys in the box to stop our run. And I didn’t play well and we lost.”last_img read more

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Plant Species Divisions Are As Distinct As Those of Animals

first_imgPlants were thought to speciate differently than animals.  Evolutionary taxonomists presumed that their species barriers were more fuzzy, with hybridization, polyploidy and other mechanisms blurring the lines between species.  Not so, claim three scientists from Indiana University writing in Nature.1  These perceptions may just be artifacts of the plants selected for study:Many botanists doubt the existence of plant species, viewing them as arbitrary constructs of the human mind, as opposed to discrete, objective entities that represent reproductively independent lineages or ‘units of evolution’  However, the discreteness of plant species and their correspondence with reproductive communities have not been tested quantitatively, allowing zoologists to argue that botanists have been overly influenced by a few ‘botanical horror stories’, such as dandelions, blackberries and oaks.  Here we analyse phenetic and/or crossing relationships in over 400 genera of plants and animals.  We show that although discrete phenotypic clusters exist in most genera (> 80%), the correspondence of taxonomic species to these clusters is poor (< 60%) and no different between plants and animals…. Contrary to conventional wisdom, plant species are more likely than animal species to represent reproductively independent lineages.   (Emphasis added in all quotes.)The authors ended with an interesting statement: “Botanists have been accused of poisoning Darwin’s mind about the nature of species and our results at least partly validate this accusation.”  They refer to Ernst Mayr’s 1982 book The Growth of Biological Thought; Mayr, a devotee of the biological species concept (i.e., a species is a reproductively isolated population), decried the botanists who presented plant species as a mess with no clear dividing lines.  These authors reiterate their finding in their conclusion: “In the majority of sexual plant taxa, discrete entities that correspond to reproductively independent lineages do exist at the species level and a useful classification would reflect this.”    Science News (Week of March 25, 2006; Vol. 169, No. 12, p. 180) reported on this story, calling it “Reality Botany.”1Rieseberg, Wood and Baack, “The nature of plant species,” Nature 440, 524-527 (23 March 2006) | doi:10.1038/nature04402.How much of what scientists think they know about nature might be subjective judgments based on sampling bias?  How much more fallible might be theories based on these judgments?    Their ending statement about Darwin is cryptic.  Are they saying that the early botanists poisoned Darwin’s mind and should be considered blameworthy for doing so, or are they joining in the poisoning conspiracy?  Probably the former; they seem to be affirming that plant species are just as much “units of evolution” that can have “reproductively independent lineages” despite crossing and apomixis (reproduction without gametes).  Whether distinct species can evolve is a separate question.  In any case, most plant species seem as distinct as animal species, so any problems with animal speciation apply equally well to plant speciation (see 02/28/2006 entry).(Visited 13 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Have To or Want To

first_imgYou produce your best work when you “want to” do the work that produces those results, not from when you “have to” do that work.When you fill your work with purpose and meaning, when it’s about your vision and mission, you’re not working because you “have to,” you’re doing it because you want to. “Want to” is what pulls you forward. “Want to” is what makes you passionate about your work.How you approach sales and marketing matters a great deal to your success and to the success of your business. If you “have to” do the work of building a pipeline of opportunities and mixing it up competing for new business, you won’t produce the results you want. You won’t bring your best self to that work, and it’s more likely you’ll avoid the work completely (for as long as that is sustainable, which isn’t going to be very long).When you want to do the sales and marketing work you need to do to build your business, the work sings. Your passion pours out of you into the work and you produce the results you want.You might “have to” have a difficult conversation with a client, a coworker, or your boss. The “have to” makes a difficult conversation more difficult because of your mental state. You won’t be in your most resourceful state, and you won’t produce the very best outcome in that state.If you “want to” have that conversation because it is going to allow you to make a difference in the relationship, make a difference in some result at work, or make a difference in some part of your career, the “want to” is what gets you that result.Turning Have To into Want ToTo transform something you have to do into something you want to do requires that you tie that “have to” back to your purpose, the thing that gives your life meaning. The more you align the things you have to do with your higher purpose, the more passion you bring to those tasks. That’s true for you now, isn’t it? You have no trouble doing the things you want to do, the things you are passionate about.What is it that you “have to” do that you should be turning into a “want to?”How do the things you have to do help you reach your compelling future?Why do you resist doing the things you need to do? What would happen if you brought your best self, your passion to these things?What would your results look like now if you “wanted to” do the things you need to do to produce the results you want?last_img read more

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Top seed Somdev Devvarman enters quarter-finals

first_imgtop seed Somdev Devvarman breezed into the men’s singles quarterfinals with a thumping 6-0 6-1 win over unseeded Sri Lankan Amresh Jayawickreme in the second round of the tennis competition of the Commonwealth Games.It was not more than a stroll in the park for Somdev as he mowed down the unranked Jayawickreme in just 41 minutes.The Lankan hardly posed a challenge to Somdev and surrendered without any fight. He lost points even when he was in advantageous position in few of the games.He was up 40-0 in the first game but could not pocket it, committing far too many unforced errors, to hand Somdev a break.The India wrapped up the opening set in just 20 minutes.The Sri Lankan, however, managed to hold on to his serve in the first game of the second set to prevent a whitewash.Somdev will next take on the winner of the match between Scotland’s Colin Fleming and Rubin Statham of New Zealand.With PTI inputslast_img read more

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Video: Michigan State’s Breslin Center Is Packed, Welcoming Spartans Back After Final 4 Berth

first_imgMichigan State fans pack Breslin Center to welcome Spartans after Final Four berth.They’re throwing quite a celebration party at the Breslin Center tonight. Michigan State’s men’s basketball team, which clinched a berth into the Final Four earlier this afternoon with a victory against Louisville in the Elite Eight in Syracuse, is back in East Lansing. Tom Izzo’s squad was welcomed home by thousands of roaring fans at their arena.   Michigan State is set to face Duke in the Final Four in Indianapolis on Saturday.last_img

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Tankers Hull Ripped in Collision off New York

first_imgzoomImage Courtesy: USCG The 115,340 dwt tanker Tofteviken suffered an approximate 30-foot gash along its portside hull in a collision on May 12.The ship, owned by Norway’s Viken Shipping, collided with the commercial fishing vessel Polaris some 30 miles southeast of Bridgehampton, New York, according to the US Coast Guard.At the time, the 2005-built Tofteviken was transiting to New York while the Polaris was transiting back to its homeport in Massachusetts after a night of fishing.There were no reports of injuries aboard the ships following the incident.The 84-foot Polaris suffered damage to its bow and outrigger, but managed to return to its homeport safely.The tanker will remain anchored until the Coast Guard determines it’s safe to continue into port after investigating and reviewing class reports.Relevant authorities are investigating the cause of the collision and assessing the damage to the Tofteviken’s hull.last_img read more

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Ohio State mens hockey swept by Providence off to programworst start

OSU then-sophomore goalie Christian Frey (30) during a game against Omaha on Nov. 8 at the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Lantern File PhotoStarting out the season 0-4 is never a good thing. But trying to find the first win against the defending national champion proved to be a task too tall for the Ohio State men’s hockey team. OSU (0-6) traveled to No. 3 Providence (4-0-1) to take on the Friars for a weekend series and were beaten twice by scores of 2-1 on Friday and 6-4 the following day.In front of a crowd of 3,033 on Friday night — the first time the Buckeyes and the Friars faced off in Rhode Island’s capital city — Providence jumped ahead 15:24 into the first period when senior defenseman Tom Parisi filtered in his first goal of the season assisted by freshman Erik Foley and junior defenseman Anthony Florentino.Florentino found the back of the net himself 6:22 into the middle period to swell the Friar’s lead to 2-0. Senior forward Steven McParland and freshman forward Ryan Tait assisted on the play.Just five minutes later, OSU cut the deficit in half when sophomore forward Matthew Weis scored on the power play.Junior forward David Gust had the assist on the Weis tally. Gust leads the team in points through six games with a goal and five assists.OSU junior netminder Matt Tomkins made 28 saves on 30 shots while the junior guarding the other cage, in Nick Ellis, had 26 saves on 27 shots.The Scarlet and Gray went 1-of-4 with the man advantage, while Providence didn’t score on any of its four opportunities.In the series finale, 2,764 fans checked into Schneider Arena to watch six goals by six different Friars overpower four goals by four different Buckeyes. Providence held a 6-2 lead in the third period following senior forward Mark Jankowski’s third goal of the season at the 6:15 mark, but OSU did try and climb back into it.Weis notched his second lamp-lighter of the weekend with 7:54 left in the game and freshman forward John Wiitala scored his first collegiate goal a mere 31 seconds after that.The two quick tallies were a nice spark for the Buckeyes, but the hole they dug themselves into was too deep to dig out of. OSU, despite taking the loss, outshot Providence 34-32 in the contest.Tomkins and Ellis were again the starters, as Tomkins made 26 stops while Ellis made 30.Penalties cost the Buckeyes dearly in game No. 2. OSU took 10 penalties, three of which were cashed in on by the Friars. Two of the Buckeyes’ goals came via the power play, as OSU went 2-of-6 on the night.Five of OSU’s six losses this season have come by two goals or less. The six losses mark the worst start in program history.The Scarlet and Gray will look for that elusive first win next weekend as they are set to take on Mercyhurst at the Schottenstein Center on Friday and Saturday. Friday’s puck drop is set for 7 p.m. while Saturday’s face-off penciled in to begin at 4 p.m. read more