Defying China, Hong Kongers rush to buy pro-democracy newspaper

first_imgTopics : Hong Kongers rushed to buy copies of pro-democracy newspaper Apple Daily on Tuesday in a show of support for its owner, who was arrested a day earlier as police rounded up critics of China.A crackdown on dissent in Hong Kong has gathered pace since China imposed a sweeping security law in June, with opposition politicians disqualified and activists arrested for social media posts.The moves have provoked outrage in the West and fear for millions in the city who last year took to the streets to protest Beijing’s tightening grip on the semi-autonomous city.  The newspaper’s front page showed a picture of Lai being led away in handcuffs with a headline — in typical lurid red characters — that said “Apple will fight on”.Dozens of people lined up in Mong Kok and around the city to buy the paper, including a woman who bought 16 copies and gave her name as Chan.”Hong Kong is a place with press freedom, but the police now suppress press freedom in a high-profile way. I feel very angry,” she said.Hong Kongers had on Monday immediately shown their support by buying shares in Lai’s media company, sending its stock value soaring. The buying spree continued on Tuesday morning, with the company’s value increasing more than 600 percent since Lai’s arrest. ‘Eviscerated’ Hong Kong’s new national security law criminalizes secession, subversion, terrorism and colluding with foreign forces.The most serious crimes under the law, which was introduced on June 30 and is not supposed to be retroactive, carry up to life in jail.Its broadly worded provisions criminalized certain political speech overnight, such as advocating sanctions, and greater autonomy or independence for Hong Kong.Similar laws are used on the authoritarian mainland to snuff out opposition.Lai, 71, was held on charges including colluding with foreign forces, as well as fraud, in an operation targeting his Next Digital publishing group.Among the others arrested were two of Lai’s sons, young pro-democracy activist Agnes Chow and Wilson Li, a former activist who describes himself as a freelance journalist working for Britain’s ITV News.Even as police were conducting interrogations, Beijing hailed Lai’s arrest, declaring him an “anti-China rabble-rouser” who conspired with foreigners to “stir up chaos”.Critics believe the law has ended the key liberties and autonomy that Beijing promised Hong Kong could keep after its 1997 handover by Britain.US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who met with Lai last year, said he was “deeply troubled” by reports of Lai’s arrest.Pompeo described it as “further proof” that Chinese authorities have “eviscerated Hong Kong’s freedoms and eroded the rights of its people”.The United States had last week already imposed sanctions on a group of Chinese and Hong Kong officials — including city leader Carrie Lam — in response to the crackdown.China condemned the sanctions as “barbarous” and imposed retaliatory sanctions on some senior American politicians and leading human rights campaigners.In a late-night briefing, police said those arrested were part of a group that had previously lobbied for foreign sanctions.”After the national security law came into force, this group was still active,” senior superintendent Li Kwai-wah told reporters. In one of the most dramatic days of the crackdown, media tycoon Jimmy Lai was among 10 people detained under the new law on Monday as around 200 police officers searched the newsroom of his tabloid, which is unapologetically critical of Beijing.In a show of solidarity for Lai, people in the city rushed to buy Tuesday’s Apple Daily, with the newspaper saying it had upped its print run to 550,000 from its normal circulation of 70,000.One restaurant owner bought 50 copies at a news stand in the commercial district of Mong Kok, saying he planned to give them away for free.”Since the government doesn’t allow Apple Daily to survive, then we as Hong Kongers have to save it ourselves,” the man, who gave his surname as Ng, told AFP.last_img read more

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DAT to recognize retirees at 11th Biennial Conference today

first_img 29 Views   no discussions Share EducationLocalNewsPrimarySecondary DAT to recognize retirees at 11th Biennial Conference today by: – April 11, 2012 Sharing is caring! Sharecenter_img Share Tweet Francis Jno. Lewis. Photo credit: Dionne DurandSeveral individuals who served in the teaching field for over fifty years are expected to be honored this morning, when the Dominica Association of Teachers will hold its 11th Biennial Conference under the theme “Teachers confronting the surge of non communicable diseases”.Second Vice President of the DAT Francis Jno Lewis said the theme was selected based on the fact that chronic non communicable diseases are affecting several teachers.According to Jno Lewis, it is also being held as a result of the crisis which is currently a major concern for the ministry of health.“We want to raise the awareness not just among our teachers but the general public on our health habits as well,” he said.Remarks by government officials, the election of new executive members and the recognition of retires will also form part of this morning’s agenda.The keynote address will be delivered by Paula Trotter.Meanwhile the DAT will embark upon a series of health fairs in April as part of extending its theme.“During the last week in April, we will see the condition of health fairs in various districts in and around Dominica. We have a lot of professionals who will conduct sessions on persons with diabetes and high blood pressure. This will assist the general populace in terms of their health habits,” he added.The event will commence from 8:30 am at the Garraway Hotel.Dominica Vibes Newslast_img read more

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USC is prepared for season’s longest road trip

first_imgThe USC football team continued to prepare for its long road trip to Boston at practice on Wednesday. Head coach Steve Sarkisian called it a productive day and  praised the Trojans’ execution and energy.Step right up · Sophomore linebacker Michael Hutchings will start in the place of suspended senior captain Hayes Pullard in Saturday’s game at Boston College. Hutchings has four total tackles this season. – Ralf Cheung | Daily TrojanNo Campfire SongsUSC will face another tough test on Saturday as they travel more than 3,000 miles to play the Boston College Eagles in an attempt to improve their record to 3-0. Though the team will be making quite a trek, Sarkisian stressed the importance of focusing more on the game than the location.“We [need to] keep doing things the way we do them regardless of who the opponent is or where we’re headed,” Sarkisian said. “Ultimately, it’s going to be about how we play Saturday night.”The Trojans understand that it is always a challenge to play on the road, but coming off a huge conference win at Stanford, the team is prepared to deal with adversity and rally around the challenges that a road game entails.“It wasn’t us sitting around a campfire and singing songs together,” Sarkisian said in reference to the Stanford trip. “It was hard. It was grueling. It was guys potentially wanting to tap out, coaches included … [But] you rely on the people around you to keep building you back up and [motivate you].”Sarkisian did not seem worried about a letdown following such an emotional victory against Stanford. He emphasized the focus and preparation of the team and hopes to see even more improvement as the week goes on.Fighting through the painAfter winning Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts against Stanford, junior defensive end Leonard Williams is still dealing with an ankle injury that nearly kept him from playing last week and has limited his availability in practice. Though his injury might prove to be bothersome, the defensive captain is determined to play in Boston.“The reason I go out there and try to fight through all these games is because I want to have a good season this year … I want to take this team as far as possible,” Williams said. “I’d never want to sit on the sideline and watch them fight through a tough game knowing I can’t help out.”Williams made it clear that his ankle feels better than it did in the week of practice leading up to the Stanford game, and when asked if there was a chance that he might not be able to play on Saturday, Williams responded, “No, I’m going to play.”Williams should get the opportunity to repeat his dominant performance from Saturday against the Eagles as long as he remains healthy, and after Wednesday’s practice, he appears to be ready.“Obviously we got more work out of Leonard today than we did yesterday, which is a positive,” Sarkisian said. “Our goal is to go win the game. If Leonard is healthy enough to play, he’s going to play.”Time to step upDue to his ejection in the second half of the Stanford game, redshirt senior linebacker Hayes Pullard is required to sit out the first half of Saturday’s game. Stepping into his starting role will be sophomore Michael Hutchings, who seemed prepared and excited to contribute on the defensive end.“I feel like I’ve played well. I study Hayes’ every move,” Hutchings said. “I feel like I’m ready to take on this moment.”While Hutchings will not have to stop the struggling Eagles’ offense on his own, he will be called upon to be a leader for the defensive unit at the strong side inside linebacker position. Other members of the defensive unit have expressed their support for the inexperienced Antioch, California native.“The team lets him know that we count on him and we trust him,” Williams said. “We let him know that he can handle it.”last_img read more

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