Condoleezza Rice asked to intercede after grim week for Gambian journalists

first_img GambiaAfrica Organisation GambiaAfrica Receive email alerts RSF_en Three journalist arrested, two radio stations closed in Gambia News July 23, 2019 Find out more News Follow the news on Gambia January 27, 2020 Find out morecenter_img News Gambia: former president must stand trial for journalist’s murder August 6, 2020 Find out more Help by sharing this information Reporters Without Borders wrote today to US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice expressing its “deep concern about the steady disintegration of democracy in Gambia and, in particular, about the unacceptable abuses being endured by its journalists,” already hard hit by the unsolved murder of a leading newspaper editor at the end of 2004.The letter stressed that the climate of hostility has got worse since the still unpunished murder on 16 December 2004 of Deyda Hydara, who was the joint founder and editor of The Point newspaper as well as being the Banjul correspondent of Agence France-Presse and of Reporters Without Borders, and who was regarded as Gambia’s leading journalist. “We would above all like to draw your attention to the disturbing ordeal undergone by Gambia’s journalists in the past week, compounding their grief about Hydara on the first anniversary of his execution-style killing,” the letter said“Acting with contempt and violence, the Gambian government displays behaviour that is unworthy of a would-be democracy,” the letter continued. “President Yahya Jammeh’s hostility towards the independent press is all the more appalling as he enjoys political impunity, despite his outrageous comments in recent years and the many press freedom violations that have taken place in his country. The close ties which the United States maintains with Gambia should not continue to serve as protection for a government that is becoming more repressive by the month.”Reporters Without Borders pointed out in its letter that, together with Hydara’s colleagues and family, it had several times called on the Gambian government to set up an independent commission of enquiry in order to redress the incapacity of the Gambian police and intelligence services to carry out an effective investigation.“Under the indifferent eyes of the international community,” the letter said, “Gambia has set a dangerous example to the African continent since last year. It sends a signal to African democrats and independent journalists that disagreeing with one’s government means risking one’s freedom or even one’s life and that this scandalous situation will elicit no protests from the democracies. We must stress, nonetheless, the courage and steadfastness of Gambia’s journalists, who have always been faithful to the path of dialogue and legality despite the violence they have often suffered.”The Reporters Without Borders letter pointed out that three developments highlighted the Gambian government’s hostility to press freedom during the week of 12 to 16 December.The participants in a conference on press freedom organised by the Gambia Press Union (GPU) on 15-16 December in Banjul in homage to Hydara had planned to go to the scene of the murder on Sankung Sillah Street, in an industrial part of the district of Kanifing, on 16 December in order to mark the end of a year of mourning. However, the delegation found their access to this dirt street blocked at 4 p.m. by a unit of armed anti-riot police, who said they had “received orders to prevent entry into the sector.” When photographer Ramatoulie Charreh of the privately-owned Daily Observer took a photo of the scene, she was beaten unconscious and had to be hospitalised.Previously, Gambian information minister Neneh Macdouall-Gaye had agreed to make a statement at the opening session of the GPU conference on the morning of 15 December, but she never turned up. The only officials who came were a police officer and a member of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA).And by being obstructive, Gambian officials prevented the head of the Reporters Without Borders Africa desk from travelling to Banjul on 12 December to attend the GPU conference. There has been no official explanation for the government’s failure to provide a visa in time, although Reporters Without Borders filed a visa request on 24 November. French citizens requesting a visa to go to Gambia are normally given one within 48 hours. to go further December 19, 2005 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Condoleezza Rice asked to intercede after grim week for Gambian journalists Gambia still needs to address challenges to press freedom Newslast_img read more

Centre To Take Steps For Free Of Cost Repatriation Of Indians Unable To Meet Flight Fare : Kerala HC [Read Order]

first_imgTop StoriesCentre To Take Steps For Free Of Cost Repatriation Of Indians Unable To Meet Flight Fare : Kerala HC [Read Order] Sanya Talwar9 May 2020 9:35 AMShare This – xThe High Court of Kerala on Friday observed that the Government of India must take adequate steps to ensure repatriation of those who are unable to meet the flight charges as applicable.”….it is pointed out that the Government of India may also take steps to ensure that those who are unable to meet the flight charges may be expatriated free of costs… we observe that in case,…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginThe High Court of Kerala on Friday observed that the Government of India must take adequate steps to ensure repatriation of those who are unable to meet the flight charges as applicable.”….it is pointed out that the Government of India may also take steps to ensure that those who are unable to meet the flight charges may be expatriated free of costs… we observe that in case, any expatriate expresses difficulty to pay flight charges and if it is found to be genuine, the embassy and missions of the Government of India may take steps in coordination with other non Government Organizations abroad for the transportation of such persons , If they have secured necessary registration with the appropriate authorities for their repatriation” – Kerala HC (Excerpt of Order)A Division bench of Justices Shaji P. Chaly & M.R. Anitha made various other observations while hearing a batch of petitions filed for purposes of issues surrounding Indian stranded abroad due to the lockdown.The Court also took note of the detailed report filed on behalf of the State Government in line with steps taken for cross-border evacuation of citizens stranded Abroad as well as the Standard Operating Procedure (SOPs) issued by the Centre for the said purpose.”it is clear that an action plan is prepared by the Government of India to repatriate the expatriates stranded in foreign countries consequent to the closure of the Indian Airports employing non-scheduled aircrafts and the ships belonging to the Indian Navy. The SOP issued by the Government of India would also make it clear that strict guidelines are issued by the Government of India with respect to the protocol to be followed by the expatriates and the respective State Governments” – Bench In light of the above, bench directed that as the GOI had derived a plan for expatriation of Indian Citizens only for the period between May 7 to May 13 as on date, plans for repatriation of the registered expatriates must be made. The Court also directed that the a statement in this regard also be submitted before the bench.Further to this, the issue of conflict between the SOP issued by the Central and State Governments with regard to quarantine (post completion of evacuation) also came up, wherein the Court considered it appropriate that the Petition(s) be taken up again for further statements of the Central and State Governments on May 12.It is also noteworthy to point out that the bench also took up the issue of the Fundamental Rights envisaged in the Constitution with respect to Article 19(1)(e) and reasonable restrictions laid down under clauses (5) and (6).Apropos, this the bench stated that even though the freedom of movement to reach the territory of India cannot be curbed by the State “ordinarily” and “normally” and that “Article 21 of the Constitution of India guarantees the citizens’ personal liberty to travel abroad and return to India”, it was concious of all the commotions that have occured to the emergent situtations that have arisen due to the pandemic.”We are also hopeful and confident that all possible steps would be taken hereafter also to alleviate their grievances, and further that the Centre and the State would work in tandem to achieve the aim of repatriation and the consequential actions” – BenchWith respect to the issue of deficiency in providing medical facilities to expatriates, the Central Government’s submissions were taken on record by the bench. These included facilities for transportation to hospitals, access to medical amenities as well as coordination with concerned authorities for purposes of securing necessary registration towards repatriation.Click Here To Download OrderSubscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Storylast_img read more