Nonviolent action around the world – 30 September 2009 (Part 1)

September 30, 2009
Singapore Democrats

This post is at least a year old. Some of the links in this post may no longer work correctly.

ELECTION AND REPRESSION IN IRAN
Tehran students protest on campus
By: BBC News, September 28, 2009
Students in Iran have demonstrated against the government at Tehran University on the first day of the new academic year. Footage posted on websites showed several hundred people chanting slogans against President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Eyewitnesses said students were not allowed into an official ceremony attended by a government minister to mark the start of term. Reports say a large number of police officers were in the area.
Read full article…

Iranian protester flees after telling of torture
By: Nazila Fathi, NY Times, September 26, 2009
When he eagerly joined the mass street protests that followed Iran’s tainted June 12 presidential elections, Ibrahim Sharifi, 24, hoped only to add his voice to the hundreds of thousands of demonstrators demanding that the government nullify the results. He never imagined that he would eventually have a far greater impact, as the only person willing to speak publicly about the brutal treatment he was subjected to in prison, including rape and torture.
Read full article…

Iran: Submission of medical records to victims of recent unrests banned
By: IHRV, September 25, 2009
“Urgent” and “Confidential” memo sent to the Ministry of Health by Sepah (Revolutionary Guard Corp) ordered that: “Arrangements must be made such that hospitals are prevented from submitting any document or record to listed individuals”. In the memo sent from Sarullah’s base, headed by Commander Mohammad Hejazi, it said: “Submission of documents or medical records to anyone injured or hospitalized during the recent events is strictly forbidden”.
Read full article…

Picture Imperfect
By: Rob Anderson, Campus Progress, September 24, 2009
Yesterday, protesters gathered in front of the United Nations in New York City as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad prepared to speak to the general assembly. Composed mostly of Iranians from around the world, the protest called for democratic reform in Iran and registered opposition to Ahmadinejad. “Murder. Torture. Rape,” read signs held by protesters, “Hold him accountable.” Yesterday’s event was a continuation of the “green revolution,” or protests that have been happening in Iran and around the world ever since the country’s June 12 elections.
Read full article…

TOP

 

CRISIS IN HONDURAS
Library of Congress report determines Honduran coup was constitutional despite having unconstitutional aspects
By: Belén Fernández, Narco News, September 28, 2009
The most prevalent argument in favor of the June 28 coup that ousted Honduran President Mel Zelaya is that Zelaya intended to accumulate more than the single presidential term currently permitted him by the Honduran Constitution. This argument fails to take into account the question that was to be posed in the nonbinding public opinion survey slated to take place on the day Zelaya was removed to Costa Rica, which was not “Do you want the president to remain in power forever?”
Read full article…

Honduras’ interim gov’t silences key broadcasters
By: Mark Stevenson, AP, September 28, 2009
Honduras’ coup-installed government silenced two key dissident broadcasters on Monday just hours after it suspended civil liberties to prevent an uprising by backers of ousted President Manuel Zelaya. Dozens of soldiers raided the offices of Radio Globo. Officials also shut down Channel 36 television station, leaving it broadcasting only a test pattern. Rene Zepeda, a spokesman for the interim government, said the two outlets had been taken off the air in accordance with a government emergency decree announced late Sunday that limits civil liberties and allows authorities to close news media that “attack peace and public order.”
Read full article…

Troops raid Honduran media groups
By: BBC News, September 28, 2009
Two Honduran media organizations that have been critical of the country’s interim government have been closed. Troops raided Radio Globo and Cholusat Sur TV hours after authorities issued a state of emergency suspending key civil liberties for 45 days. The measures followed a call by ousted president Manuel Zelaya for his supporters to stage a protest exactly three months since he was deposed.
Read full article…

Honduran protesters set to defy clampdown
By: Adam Thomson, Financial Times, September 28, 2009
There were fears of more violence in Honduras on Monday as supporters of Manuel Zelaya, the country’s ousted president, prepared to hold a mass demonstration in the capital. The protest, called by Mr Zelaya to mark the three-month anniversary of his forced removal from office, came less than 24 hours after the country’s de facto government suspended constitutionally guaranteed civil liberties. The suspension, issued in a decree on Sunday, stripped Hondurans of their right to unauthorized demonstrations – a move that critics argued was designed to scupper what Mr Zelaya dubbed the “final offensive” in his bid to regain office.  
Read full article…

Honduras suspends civil liberties amid calls for ‘rebellion’
By: The Guardian, September 28, 2009
Honduras’ interim leaders suspended key civil liberties last night in response to “calls for insurrection” by ousted president Manuel Zelaya, empowering police and soldiers to break up “unauthorized” public meetings, arrest people without warrants and restrict the news media. The announcement came just hours after Zelaya called on supporters to stage mass marches today to mark the three-month anniversary of the 28 June coup that ousted him. Zelaya described the marches as “the final offensive” against the interim government.
Read full article…

Zelaya says Honduras stopped OAS officials at airport
By: Blake Schmidt, Bloomberg, September 27, 2009
Ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya said authorities at the Toncontin airport in Tegucigalpa stopped four officials from the Organization of American States from entering the country to organize talks to end the country’s political crisis. “They won’t let these people enter to start a dialogue,” Zelaya said in a phone interview from the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa today. Zelaya said he wants to hold talks at the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa, where he has been since sneaking back into Honduras this week, about three months after he was exiled by soldiers at gunpoint.
Read full article…

Honduras coup leader decrees 45-day suspension of constitution
By: Al Giordano, The Field, September 27, 2009
Now they’ve really done it. On the same day that the Honduran coup regime detained six foreign diplomats from the Organization of American States (OAS) – two US officials, two Canadian, one Colombian and Chilean OAS chief Jose Miguel Insulza – for six hours in the Toncontin International Airport, barring their entrance into Honduras, it has made public the following decree, which bans freedom of assembly, transit, the press and orders National Police and the Armed Forces to arrest and detain any person suspected of exercising those rights.
Read full article…

Honduran coup regime mocks UN Security Council with embassy attacks
By: Al Giordano, The Field, September 25, 2009
After today’s emergency session of the United Nations Security Council in New York, US Ambassador Susan Rice emerged to read a warning to the Honduras coup regime: “We condemn acts of intimidation against the Brazilian embassy and call upon the de facto government of Honduras to cease harassing the Brazilian embassy.” The wording is unequivocal. After investigating the claims (and the de facto regime’s denials) of constant technological and chemical attacks on the diplomatic seat in Tegucigalpa, and illegal impediment of ingress and egress to and from the embassy, where legitimate President Manuel Zelaya and at least 85 aides, supporters and some members of the harassment is real and it is ongoing.
Read full article…

 

AFRICA
Sierra Leone:  Banned opposition radio station goes to court
By: Lansana Fofana, All Africa, September 28, 2009
Sierra Leone’s largest opposition party has taken the country’s media monitoring body to court for banning its radio station. The Independent Media Commission (IMC) banned the Sierra Leone Peoples’ Party (SLPP) station, Radio Unity, in March. This followed political clashes between the SLPP supporters and the ruling All Peoples’ Congress (APC). The APC’s station, Rising Sun, was also banned.
Read full article…

Guinea:’Dozens killed’in anti-junta demonstration
By: AFP, September 28, 2009
Dozens of people were shot dead in Conakry on Monday when Guinea’s security forces moved in against opposition demonstrators at a city stadium, witnesses and a medical source said. Two former prime ministers now in the opposition, Cellou Dalein Diallo and Sidya Toure, were injured when the demonstration was violently repressed, then taken to a military camp, according to Diallo’s wife.
Read full article…

Sudan lifts media censorship
By: Al Jazeera, September 28, 2009
Omar al-Bashir, Sudan’s president, has ordered an immediate end to state censorship of the media ahead of the country’s first elections in almost 25 years. In a decree carried by the official Suna news agency on Sunday, al-Bashir put an end to “pre-censorship”, the system where newspapers are screened by state censors before being available to the public. “We had a meeting with President al-Bashir. He ordered a stop to censorship from today,” Ali Shomo, the chairman of Sudan’s national press council, the state regulator, said.
Read full article…

Zimbabwe court rules activist can’t be prosecuted
By: NY Times, September 28, 2009
Zimbabwe’s Supreme Court ruled on Monday that the government could not prosecute a leading human rights activist facing terrorism charges because her abduction and torture in custody infringed her rights. Jestina Mukoko, head of a local rights group, had challenged her prosecution at the country’s highest court, accusing state security agents of abducting her from her home during a dawn raid and torturing her while she was held at secret locations. The ruling opens the way for other rights and opposition activists to have similar charges dropped.
Read full article…

Kenya: Can one woman save Africa?
By: The Independent, September 28, 2009
When does planting a tree become a revolutionary act – and unleash an army of gunmen who want to shoot you dead? The answer to this question lies in the unlikely story of Wangari Maathai. Maathai watched as the life-preserving landscape of her childhood was hacked down. The forests were felled, the soils dried up, and the rivers died, so a corrupt and distant clique could profit. She started a movement to begin to make the land green again – and in the process she went to prison, nearly died, toppled a dictator, transformed how African women saw themselves, and won a Nobel Prize.
Read full article…

Somalia: Mass demonstration in the capital Mogadishu
By: Somaliweyn, September 27, 2009
The residents living in the Somali police ground at Hamar Jajab district in the Somali capital Mogadishu have on Sunday staged a mass demonstration against a statement from the Somali Police department which tells them to evacuate the Police grounds as soon as possible or their makeshifts house will be destroyed with bulldozers. The demonstrators were mainly mothers’ mostly elderly and children, and have started their protest from the ground where they were told to evacuate…
Read full article…

Zimbabwe police shoot striking workers
By: Andrew Moyo, ZimOnline, September 26, 2009
Zimbabwe police on Friday opened fire on hundreds of striking workers in the southwestern mining town of Zvishavane, injuring four workers including a councillor from Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC party, labour leaders said. “Four people, one woman and three men, were shot and injured by the police this morning while demonstrating at the Shabanie Mine gate,” Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) information officer Khumbulani Ndlovu told ZimOnline.
Read full article…

South African children push for better schools
By: NY Times, September 24, 2009
Thousands of children marched to City Hall this week in sensible black shoes, a stream of boys and girls from township schools across this seaside city that extended for blocks, passing in a blur of pleated skirts, blazers and rep ties. Their polite demand: Give us libraries and librarians. The marchers in Cape Town, who numbered in the thousands. The marchers echoed a children’s uprising against apartheid in 1976. “We want more information and knowledge,” said a ninth grader, Abongile Ndesi.
Read full article…

 

AMERICAS
US: Climate scientist – “So then we arrive at civil resistance….”
By: Act For Climate Justice, September 27th, 2009
Earth Island Institute interview with NASA scientist Dr. James Hansen. He denounces cap-and-trade, the Waxman-Markey bill, and calls for civil resistance in the face of the fraudulent inaction of the US government. He stated “When I give a talk on this, I show that the three options for getting the actions that are obviously needed are through the democratic process, influencing the elections of the administration and Congress; secondly, the courts; and then thirdly, civil resistance.”
Listen to the interview…

US: Someone in Pennsylvania loves you, but it isn’t the Pittsburgh Police
By: Herschel Tomlinson, The Examiner, September 26, 2009
The Pittsburgh G-20 Resistance Project reported that they were followed, photographed and searched prior to the summit. Planners were told to write lawyers’ numbers on their bodies. One thousand jail cells were prepared for protesters. Thirty one hundred law enforcement officers and 2000 National Guardsmen converged on Pittsburgh from around the country to reinforce Pittsburgh’s 900 member force. There have been reports of police buying tanks, and using anti terrorism money to militarize their forces. Laws were passed by the city council, outlawing the possesion of certain tools,  and “noxious substances”.
Read full article…

US: Be it G8 or G20, activists say protests to continue
By: Mark Egan, Reuters, September 25, 2009
The Group of 8 rich nations may have become the Group of 20 to be more inclusive of emerging economies, but activists vow to go on decrying capitalism no matter how many leaders attend the summits. At its summit here, the G20 said it will become the forum for global economic management, giving rising powers such as China more clout and including countries such as Mexico, Indonesia and South Africa who are not in the G8. About 10,000 protesters marched against capitalism and the G20’s summit agenda on Friday, in what organizers called the biggest protest in this western Pennsylvania city since Vietnam war demonstrations.
Read full article…

Thousands hold peaceful march at G-20 Summit
By: Ian Urbina, NY Times, September 25, 2009
Several thousand demonstrators espousing and denouncing a host of causes converged on downtown Pittsburgh on Friday, chanting, pumping up signs and playing instruments in a peaceful and permitted march calling for solutions to a range of problems that they attributed to the economic policies of the world leaders at the Group of 20 meeting. The People’s March, as it was called, was sponsored by the Thomas Merton Center, a Pittsburgh peace organization. It came a day after raucous confrontations between the police and protesters resulted in 66 arrests.
Read full article…

US oil company sued for Amazon exploration
By: Survival International, September 25, 2009
Indigenous people from south-east Peru are suing Repsol-YPF and US company Hunt Oil over their plans to explore for oil on their land. Local indigenous organisation FENAMAD has filed a lawsuit asking for an injunction to be placed on both the companies’ activities. The suit argues that the government did not consult with local people before giving the companies permission to work there, as is required under international law, and oil exploration would violate local peoples’ fundamental human rights to ‘enjoy a balanced environment’.
Read full article…