Egyptian, Tunisian pro-democracy movements continue

This video is called Egyptian workers and youth denounce Tantawi regime.

Egyptian military delays election as opposition mounts: here.

Thousands of protesters opposed to the US-backed military regime of General Mohammed Hussein Tantawi in Egypt clashed with pro-government thugs during demonstrations on Saturday: here.

CAIRO: Across Egypt, the names of former President Hosni Mubarak and his wife Susanne Mubarak are prominent, at metro stations, on buildings, libraries and other state-run facilities. The revolution had hoped to remove their names from these public locations, but an Egyptian appeals court on Thursday ruled in favor of keeping the names where they currently stand: here.

AMNESTY International has urged the Egyptian authorities to ensure that an activist thought to have been arrested on 23 July is immediately freed and that he is not subjected to torture or other ill-treatment: here.

Egypt: Kuwaiti ship spills oil in Red Sea: CAIRO: A Kuwaiti ship was penalized $500,000 for polluting Suez Canal: here.

In recent days Tunisian security forces have violently attacked a new wave of anti-government protests across the country: here.

Protests in Jordan: here.

Malawi Governmentt Blocks Funeral of Unrest Victims: here.

Malawi: Mutharika Bans Four Radio Stations: here.

New Lake Malawi fish species discovered

From Care2:

5 New Species of Fish Discovered

posted by Jake Richardson Mar 9, 2011 2:02 pm

Researchers have discovered five new species of wild fish endemic to Lake Malawi, which is located between Malawi, Tanzania and Mozambique. The new fish are in the genus Metriaclima. They are provisionally named Metriaclima glaucos, Metriaclima xanthos, Metriaclima sciasma, Metriaclima nkhunguensis, and Metriaclima mossambicus. (To see copyrighted images of the fish, visit this web page.)

Metriaclima sciasma lives on the Tanzania coast, while the others all live on the Mozambique side. All live in rocky and sandy areas, and live at depths between three and twenty meters. Lake Malawi has so many cichlids, there are some websites devoted just to them.

Repeated colonization and hybridization in Lake Malawi cichlids: here.

Mozambique’s Lake Niassa [=Lake Malawi] is declared a reserve: here.

Fish are not as dumb as people sometimes think: marine scientists have found that fish that are regularly hunted with spearguns are much more wary and keep their distance from fishers: here.

Tahoe native fish population declines sharply, invasives on the rise: here.

Birdlife International has teamed up with the Good Gifts Catalogue to raise funds for Lilian’s Lovebirds Agapornis lilianae in Malawi. Listed in the cataloque as a gift ‘for lovebirds everywhere’ it is hoped that people will spend £25 (the cost of the gift) which will go towards field equipment for surveying and monitoring the birds in Liwonde National Park, Malawi and towards community outreach programmes: here.

Tobacco child labour in Malawi

This video says about itself:

16 February 2010 — As the tobacco industry continues to shift its production to developing countries, more vulnerable children are being exposed to hazardous working conditions. It is estimated that over 78,000 children work on tobacco estates across Malawi some up to 12 hours a day, many for less than 1 pence (1.7US cents) an hour and without protective clothing.

A recent Channel 4 Television programme, “Unreported World”, highlighted the ongoing use of child labour in tobacco harvesting in Malawi: here.

Paleontologists in Peru have discovered fossilized tobacco in the northern Amazon that dates back to the Pleistocene Era 2.5 million years ago, the scientists said Friday: here.

Malawi humanist group fights for release of ‘witches’: here.

Madonna and Malawi: here.

HUMAN Rights Watch alleged today that children as young as seven are working long hours in US fields harvesting pesticide-laced tobacco under dangerous conditions: here.

Hundreds of thousands of children, some as young as seven years old, work on American farms. Among the most exploited are those who harvest tobacco, risking nicotine poisoning and other dangers, according to a report published Wednesday by Human Rights Watch: here.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Ugandan gay killer to meet Obama

This video from the USA says about itself:

Doug Coe of The Fellowhip or The Family leads Hillary‘s prayer circle has conservative members that include dictators from around the world. They lead the Senate prayer breakfast.

From Pink News in Britain:

Author of Uganda’s gay execution bill to attend prayer breakfast with Obama

By Staff Writer,

January 18, 2010 – 10:22

David Bahati, the MP who authored Uganda’s anti-homosexuality bill, is expected to attend a prayer breakfast with US president Barack Obama.

Bahati told the Ugandan newspaper Sunday Monitor he would be attending the National Prayer Breakfast on February 4th.

The event [is] usually attended by the president, who the newspaper described as a “gays-tolerant liberal president”.

The breakfast is organised by The Fellowship – a secretive conservative Christian organisation which is also known as The Family. Its members include politicians, religious leaders and corporate executives.

Bahati may be asked to speak at the event, which will also be attended by Congress members and Cabinet secretaries. Previous speakers have included Tony Blair, Bono and Mother Theresa.

Uganda’s president Yoweri Museveni signalled last week that he was stepping back from the bill, which would execute gays in some circumstances.

He said his country must consider its “foreign interests” and cited world leaders such as British prime minister Gordon Brown, who had expressed his concern about the proposed legislation.

Bahati, the MP for Ndorwa West, has refused to back down, saying his bill will “protect the traditional family”.

The country’s minister for ethics James Nsaba Buturo said recently he believed Museveni did not support the death penalty for gays and said the provision was likely to be removed from the bill.

Aston Kajara, minister of state for investments, has also said the bill is “unnecessary”.

The bill would impose the death penalty on gays who [have] sex with minors, disabled people or while living with HIV, along with repeat offenders. Other homosexuality offences, such as failing to report incidents to police, would result in imprisonment.

It is expected to come before parliament in late February or early March.

Update here.

David Bahati, the Ugandan MP who authored an anti-gay bill currently passing through the country, has reportedly been disinvited from a prayer breakfast with US president Barack Obama: here.

US President Barack Obama described a proposed Ugandan law against homosexuality as “odious” at the National Prayer Breakfast today: here.

Malawi defends prosecution of gay couple: here.

The pope and homophobia: here.

US Christian Radio Host: Deal With Homsexuality Like We Deal With Drug Abuse: here.

Malawi’s children poisoned for tobacco profits

This video is called Children of Tobacco – Malawi’s shocking plantation exploitation.

Almost 100,000 children who toil on Malawian tobacco estates for up to 12 hours a day are exposed to “extremely high levels of nicotine poisoning,” according to a report released by a children’s rights group: here.

See also this video on healthcare in Malawi.

Smoking Gun: Just One Cigarette Has Harmful Effect On Arteries Of Young Healthy Adults: here.

Tobacco use kills at least five million people every year, a figure that could rise if countries don’t take stronger measures to combat smoking, the World Health Organisation has warned: here.

Editor of the journal PLoS Medicine explains why they won’t publish tobacco-funded studies: here.

Britain: Passive smoking causes at least 22,000 new cases of asthma and wheezing in children every year, doctors have warned: here.

Smoking Is Dumb: Young Men Who Smoke Have Lower IQs, Study Finds: here.

Britain: Young people are more likely to smoke if they see cigarettes on sale in shops, health campaigners have warned amid government plans to overturn a ban on displaying tobacco: here.

Vera Chirwa, freedom fighter of Malawi, Africa

This video is called A Visit to Malawi Lake (Africa); it is especially about the cichlid fish there.

From British daily The Morning Star:

Freedom fighter against all odds

(Sunday 25 November 2007)

Vera Chirwa: Fearless Fighter by Vera Chirwa
(Zed Books, £12.99)

APARTHEID not only existed in South Africa but also in Zambia and Zimbabwe, then called North and south Rhodesia, and Nyasaland, which is now known as Malawi.

Highly educated blacks were treated as “boys,” to be humiliated by less educated white workers. Added to this, black women in traditional societies were regarded as unequal to men and not expected to be educated.

Vera Mlangazua Chirwa, who was born in 1932 in Nyasaland, therefore had a double struggle to obtain an education. She overcame her family prejudices and went to school in Livingstonia and Blantyre. Shortly after leaving school, she met Orton Chirwa, a teacher 13 years her senior. They fell in love and were married in 1951.

Orton went to study law in London, leaving Vera with three children to rear. She got a job as a clerk, paid less than white colleagues and forced to live five miles from her work. She experienced blatant racism and injustice, which fuelled her political activism.

Returning qualified in 1959, her husband opened the first non-European law practice in Nyasaland.

Both were members of the Nyasaland African Congress, which opposed the white colonial Federation of North and South Rhodesia and Nyasaland.

Dr Hastings Banda, a friend of the Chirwa’s, returned from Europe in 1958 to lead the fight for black freedom and was elected president of the NAC.

Fearing a massacre of whites by blacks, the white district commissioners began to imprison NAC members. Orton, who had defended many, was arrested with Vera on a trumped-up charge and they were imprisoned in Rhodesia.

Every humiliation was inflicted on the black female prisoners. Vera withstood them all, claiming political detainee rights with some success. Both were released after six months.

Orton formed the Malawian Congress Party, of which Banda became president. In the first democratic elections in 1961, the MCP won a landslide victory.

The Machiavellian leader Banda then instituted a reign of terror against his fellow freedom fighters.

He also made an alliance with the South African apartheid regime. For this and his suppression of opposition, the Western political Right called Banda a ‘moderate African leader’. A favourite of them, like other dicatators such as Mobutu in Congo, Suharto in Indonesia; and today, Musharraf in Pakistan.

Many fled to Tanzania, including Orton and children, while Vera left for London to study for the Bar. In 1966, she returned to her family and became the Tanzanian prosecuting state attorney.

On the way to Zambia in 1981, Vera, with Orton and their two sons, was kidnapped and taken to Malawi. After a farcical trial before a traditional court, Vera and Orton Chirwa were imprisoned, under sentence of death.

In 1992, a joint British human rights delegation briefly brought them together. Both had been brutally treated, chained and starved. Each thought the other dead.

Four weeks later, Orton was mysteriously found dead in his cell. After a family reunion for his funeral, Vera was released in January 1993.

In June of that year, a successful referendum for multi-party democracy took place in Malawi. Prior to the referendum, Chirwa insisted that a constitution be agreed. A widely based symposium thrashed one out, covering democracy and human rights, but it still is not fully implemented.

She now campaigns for the emancipation of Malawian women and empowerment of their rights and, as an African human rights commissioner, carries on her work throughout Africa.

The Danish Institute for Human Rights and Amnesty International, which sponsored this book, deserve praise for making Vera Chirwa’s courage known to the world.


Malawi: Big Tobacco and child labour: here.

Swaziland: Women challenge royal extravagance: here.