Belarus: “A government can’t change the course of history by concealing the facts online”

first_img Credit : Sergei GAPON / AFP August 26, 2020 Belarus: “A government can’t change the course of history by concealing the facts online” Organisation News to go further News RSF at the Belarusian border: “The terrorist is the one who jails journalists and intimidates the public” Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns the Belarusian government’s use of Internet cuts and news website blocking in an attempt to conceal reality and deprive the population of reliable, independent coverage of the country’s continuing protests and other developments.As well as still arresting journalists, the authorities are increasingly clamping down on online information and organizing long-term Internet censorship as an alternative way to suppress independent reporting.The information ministry has blocked more than 70 websites since 21 August, including the site of Radio Svaboda (the Belarusian service of Prague-based Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty), the site of Belsat (a TV channel run by exile journalists based in Warsaw), the Belarusian sites of The Village and Warsaw-based Euroradio, and the Belarusian version of the Russian alternative media outlet MediaZona.The censors are also targeting electronic messaging services such as ProtonMail and VPNs. Users trying to connect keep on getting the same message: “Access is limited by decision of the Information Ministry under the law ‘on the media’ of the Republic of Belarus.” However, the information ministry is not giving any reason for the blocking, which the Belarusian Association of Journalists (BAJ) has condemned. The BAJ’s own site has been blocked since 9 August, the day that the disputed presidential election was held.Erratic InternetThe Belarusian Internet has meanwhile been subject to disruptions for more than two weeks. Mobile Internet began being unstable when polling stations opened on 9 August and became completely inaccessible after the results were announced in the evening. For three days, specialized software such as TOR or VPNs were needed to access the Internet and circumvent the censorship of certain messaging services and websites.The authorities denied being behind these incidents, claiming they were the result of a cyber-attack from abroad. Experts at RIPE-NCC, the regional Internet registry for Europe and the Middle East, nonetheless argued the Belarusian government was indeed responsible for the disruptions.When the Internet was cut again for about an hour on the evening of 23 August, the national telecommunications company blamed the blackout on a technical problem – a disruption similar to the one reported on 17 August. “Although less visible than arresting journalists, the measures taken to prevent access to online information are just as oppressive,” RSF deputy editor-in-chief Catherine Monnet said. “The Belarusian government’s efforts to stifle the truth and deprive the public of reliable and independent information are deplorable. The different channels of information, which are essential for both journalists and public in times of crisis, must be restored. A government can’t change the course of history by concealing the facts online.”Ruled since 1994 by President Alexander Lukashenko, who has been reelected in the first round every five years, Belarus is ranked 153rd out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2020 World Press Freedom Index. News News Russian media boss drops the pretence and defends Belarus crackdown Receive email alerts BelarusEurope – Central Asia Online freedomsEvents InternetFreedom of expression Follow the news on Belarus Help by sharing this information RSF_en BelarusEurope – Central Asia Online freedomsEvents InternetFreedom of expression June 2, 2021 Find out more May 28, 2021 Find out more “We welcome opening of criminal investigation in Lithuania in response to our complaint against Lukashenko” RSF says May 27, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

Tod Austin Named Regional President of TD Insurance

first_imgBURLINGTION, Vermont – Tod Austin has joined TD Insurance, Inc. in Burlington as the Regional President. TD Insurance is among the top 50 agencies in the U.S. with a reputation for quality customer service and a disciplined approach to managing insurance risk.Austin has 25 years of experience in the insurance industry. For five years prior to joining TD Insurance, he served as President of Hackett, Valine & MacDonald. Austin has earned the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter designation.A Shelburne resident, Austin is a past board member of the Lake Champlain Chamber of Commerce and the United Way of Chittenden County. He is a 1979 graduate of the University of Vermont, where he received an economics degree.TD Insurance, Inc. is a subsidiary of TD Bank, N.A., and has been providing insurance solutions and personalized service for over 100 years. Accomplished and knowledgeable agents offer a full range of commercial and personal insurance products that help clients create insurance strategies that meet their unique needs. For more information, visit http://www.TDInsure.com(link is external).last_img read more

Lambert stunner wins it for Saints

first_img Davis set up Rodriguez for the opener and thenFernando Torres had a goal disallowed and Victor Moses saw a cross-shot deflect behind off Luke Shaw before Chelsea snatched a 33rd-minute leveler. Marko Marin sent in the resulting corner and kamikaze defending allowed captain Terry to head home unmarked from six yards. Chelsea were level for less than two minutes, though, thanks to a moment of magic from Lambert. After Steven Davis was fouled by Ryan Bertrand, Lambert stepped up to fire home a thunderous 25-yard free-kick into Petr Cech’s top-right hand corner. Making his 500th career league appearance, the Liverpudlian’s strike was his 14th league goal of the campaign – more than any other English player in the Premier League. Chelsea peppered the Southampton goal throughout the second half but were unable to find a way past substitute goalkeeper Kelvin Davis, leading to a defeat that drops Rafael Benitez’s side to fourth. Press Association Rickie Lambert celebrated his new Southampton contract in some style on Saturday, smashing home an exquisite free-kick to secure a 2-1 win in a hard-fought encounter with Chelsea.center_img Saints had gone ahead through another in-form striker Jay Rodriguez, who collected a neat one-two from Steven Davis before slotting home in the 23rd minute. John Terry was allowed to level unmarked from a corner 10 minutes later, only for Saints to hit back immediately through Lambert’s fine strike. last_img read more

USC squares off against UCLA in Pac-12 opener

first_imgThe No. 9 USC women’s volleyball team is just glad to be back.Talent · Senior outside hitter Alex Jupiter leads the Women of Troy with 112 kills and 128.5 points through seven games this season. – Daily Trojan file photoAfter seven games away from the friendly confines of Galen Center to start the season, the Women of Troy (5-2), who opened the season with road trips to University Park, Penn. and south Florida, return to their home court for their home opener Friday against No. 8 UCLA.It won’t be easy.Though riding a four-game winning streak, including four straight sweeps, USC faces a UCLA team that has won six of its first seven games.“It was a rough road trip, but I think it was really good for the younger girls to gain experience,” senior outside hitter Alex Jupiter said. “Still, we’re glad we’re back at home.”Jupiter, who leads the team in kills and points, will be counted upon for her experience, as the Women of Troy look to contend with UCLA’s outside hitter Rachel Kidder, who remains among the best in the Pac-12.This week Kidder was nominated for the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week, and as with Jupiter, Kidder leads the team in kills and points. She not only provides an offensive presence but makes her mark on defense, ranking second on the team in digs.Though Kidder might rank as the Bruins’ top talent, they also boast a three-headed monster on the outside with Tabi Love and Kelly Reeves, who rank second and third, respectively on the team in kills.After its last match, a five-set thriller, which resulted in a loss to Pepperdine, UCLA is looking to bounce back, adding more fuel to an already-heated rivalry.The Women of Troy are hoping to combat a motivated Bruins squad by looking to get some more production from the rest of their roster beyond Jupiter — something USC coach Mick Haley has preached all season.Junior outside hitter/opposite Katie Fuller, who finished with seven kills Tuesday against Cal State Northridge, could provide a lift.“I’m really excited … especially for the younger girls coming home for this,” Jupiter said when asked about the significance of the rivalry. “It’s a great experience with a packed crowd, and everything is just so intense.”Freshman setter/opposite Emily Young is also making strides on the left side and has impressed Haley.“In the middle we’re going to go with [senior middle blocker Lauren] Williams and [freshman middle blocker] Hannah Schraer, who we need to step up for us, especially with [sophomore middle blocker] Alexis Olgard not healthy,” Haley said.The first 5,000 fans in attendance for the match will receive a free “Spike The Bruins” T-shirt as USC looks to set a new women’s volleyball attendance record.last_img read more