Saturday, 20 November 2010

“Jeremy Kyle is forced to Step Back after man starts headbutting” Facebook scam | Naked Security

Another scam is hitting Facebook this weekend pretending to be a video of British TV celebrity Jeremy Kyle being headbutted. Like the Jerry Springer show in the United States, Kyle's show is notorious in the UK for showcasing controversial content. As have many of the fake Facebook applications we have seen in the past, it requests permission to post to your wall and then propagates across the walls of curious Facebook friends who click the link.
Facebook wall message
In addition to spreading on Facebook, this scam is being sent out on Twitter using a combination of spam and compromised legitimate Twitter accounts. The Twitter links ultimately lead you to the Facebook application, rather than directly to the affiliate marketing scams it is designed to spread.

Facebook app permissions request

One twist which we have seen more frequently of late is the bogus application requesting permission to "Manage my pages". If the attacker can trick a Facebook page administrator into granting their application control to post on the page, it allows them to send their message to a much larger audience.

At the time of writing more than 11,500 people have clicked through to this scam, which plays out in an all too familiar way. You are led to a Facebook Application which looks like a video player. When you click the video it asks for permission to "Like" it. Instead of seeing the promised video, you are then asked to fill out a survey, play a game or take an IQ test. Companies that offer money to individuals who can drive them referral traffic are ultimately to blame for these problems. Every person who takes the IQ test and subscribes to a premium rate SMS service will result in the scammer being paid an affiliate fee.
Affiliate marketing choice window

Considering that we have seen large numbers of these attacks on Facebook for over a year now, it does raise a lot of questions about their new email service. If they are unable to properly filter applications for users who register for access to their developer API, will they be able to prevent scams from spreading through their enhanced messaging service? I suppose only time will tell.

Thank you to one of our Naked Security readers for sending us a tip on this one. Have a tip? Send us an email at

Rules of engagement for a lawful, cute and cuddly sabotage « Gilda35


Image via Wikipedia

By Jovanz74 – translation by Asphodelia

“All warfare is based on deception”

(“Art of War” Sun Tzu)

I will list below – for the benefits of new and seasoned Researcheers – the Rules of Engagement of our adorable sabotages, duly reloaded in light of the TID practice (Twitter Italia Dominators)

  1. SABOTAGE: infiltrating a message among the toptweets to sabotage the oppressive monopoly of the babymoron¹ The purpose is anti-entropy – it aims to provide babymoron-free space to Twitter users. The ultimate goal is the destruction of the Moronic Regime and the liberation of Twitter.
  2. THE PROPOSER – he/she may propose a sabotage – must be a human user of Twitter. A BOT or fake may not propose a sabotage. Babymorons may propose a sabotage prior to abjuration of their previous life and subsequent to burning the image of divinity from the Babymoronic Pantheon via a cleansing pyre (e.g. Jonas Brother, Justin Bieber, Twilight etc)
  3. RECRUITMENT: Once the Proposer has been chose, the Scientific Committee of #Gilda35 will recruit at least 20 Saboteurs and will give them a rendez-vous to proceed with the Sabotage at a chosen time. The recruitment will take place through the creation of a special event on . Here, the Saboteurs will register simply by replying YES (there’s a button!) to take part in the Sabotage. This step is important because it safeguards against possible ‘tricks’ by the Toptweet Algorithm and scientifically proves how behind EVERY Algorithm there are actual ‘human’ choices.
  4. MESSAGE OF SABOTAGE: the content of the tweet is chosen by the Proposer. We advise against using words that could be filtered out, such as fake, BOT, babymoron, obscenities etc. The more anonymous the message is, the better the chances of making it to toptweet.
  5. #TID – The message MUST contain the hashtag TID in order to allow us to measure (via Tweetreach) the level of penetration of the content within the Italian Twitter Community. IMPORTANT: all ‘staff’ announcement (recruitment, incitement etc) must contain the hashtag #Gilda35 whilst #TID is ONLY to be used for the actual message of sabotage and relative RTs.
  6. HOW TO SABOTAGE – @Jovanz74 (or another member of the Scientific Committee) will, at the agreed time, communicate the name of the Proposer and the message of sabotage. The Saboteurs will have to retweet the Proposer’s tweet direct and add it to their ‘favourite’ tweets. It’s very important that the Proposer refrains from tweeting just before and just after the agreed time and that he/she communicates the text to the Scientific Committee beforehand, to avoid errors.
  7. TIMING – the saboteurs must complete the operation in less than 5 minutes (this is essential to get to toptweet and to avoid possible double agents filtering out the message)
  8. DISSEMINATION – Once having retweeted and added the tweet to their favourites, the saboteurs must recruit amongst other users, it’s important to create critical mass.
  9. IMPORTANT: Have fun – it’s a game!
  10. VERY IMPORTANT: Pay attention: this is a very serious matter indeed!
  11. EVEN MORE IMPORTANT: This is not a post.

Hasta la vida loca siempre et bon sabotage à tout le monde !

¹Babymoron: This is a liberal translation from ‘bimbominkia’. As bimbo means ‘baby’ and minkia stands for ‘minchia’ i.e. ‘dick’, I think you get the idea. Babymoron it is, then.

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  1. #Tweetstorm and #Gilda35 – Uniting for a #freegary on Nov20th | #TweetsStorm's in support of Gary Mckinnon

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The National Archives


The Coalition Government is committed to restoring and defending your freedom – and we're asking you to participate.

We're working to create a more open and less intrusive society through our Programme for Government. We want to restore Britain’s traditions of freedom and fairness, and free our society of unnecessary laws and regulations – both for individuals and businesses.
This site gives you the chance to tell us which laws and regulations you think we should get rid of. Your feedback will inform government policy and some of your proposals could end up making it into bills we bring before Parliament to change the law. We've had an excellent response so far, receiving thousands of ideas, comments and votes.

So if you see an idea here that you agree with, then rate it to move it up the list. If you have more to say about an idea, then add your comment. Or submit your own idea if it isn't yet on the site (the search box is a good way to check). And remember - we want you to suggest ideas for removing laws and regulations, rather than ideas for creating them.

Your Freedom is the part of the most radical shake up of our politics for decades. We encourage you to keep participating in this unpredictable forum. As Nick Clegg said when he launched Your Freedom - 'real democracy is unspun; it is the raucous, unscripted debates that always throw up the best ideas'. 
It’s time to have your say. After all – it’s your freedom.

Caiff unrhyw gyfraniad a wneir yn Gymraeg i’r safle hwn ei gyfieithu a’i ystyried yn llawn fel rhan o’r broses o asesu syniadau a sylwadau.

Download Hiren's BootCD 12.0

Page 9 of 9

Startup Tools

- Autoruns 10.02: Displays All the entries from startup folder, Run, RunOnce, and other Registry keys, Explorer shell extensions,toolbars, browser helper objects, Winlogon notifications, auto-start services, Scheduled Tasks, Winsock, LSA Providers, Remove Drivers and much more which helps to remove nasty spyware/adware and viruses (Windows Freeware).
- HijackThis 2.0.4: a general homepage hijackers detector and remover and more (Windows Freeware).
- ServiWin v1.40: Alternative Windows Services/Drivers Tool (Windows Freeware).
- Silent Runners Revision 63: A free script that helps detect spyware, malware and adware in the startup process (Windows Freeware).
- Startup Control Panel 2.8: a tool to edit startup programs (Windows Freeware).
- Startup Monitor 1.02: it notifies you when any program registers itself to run at system startup (Windows Freeware).

System Information Tools

- Astra 5.46: Advanced System info Tool and Reporting Assistant (Dos Freeware).
- BlueScreenView 1.28: Scans minidump files for BSOD (blue screen of death) crash information (Windows Freeware).
- CPU Identification utility 1.18: CHKCPU.EXE Detailed information on CPU (Dos Freeware).
- CPU-Z 1.56: It gathers information on some of the main devices of your system (Windows Freeware).
- CTIA CPU Information 2.7: another CPU information tool (Dos Freeware).
- Drive Temperature 1.0: Hard Disk Drive temperature meter (Windows Freeware).
- GPU-Z 0.4.7: A lightweight utility designed to give you all information about your video card and GPU (Windows Freeware).
- HDTune 2.55: HD Tune is a hard disk health, benchmarking, error scanner and information tool (Windows Freeware).
- HWiNFO 5.5.0: a powerful system information utility (Dos Freeware).
- Navratil Software System Information 0.60.45: High-end professional system information tool (Dos Freeware).
- PC Wizard 2010.1.95: Powerful system information/benchmark utility designed especially for detection of hardware (Windows Freeware).
- PCI 32 Sniffer 1.4 (07-11-2010): device information tool which is similar to unknown devices (Windows Freeware).
- PCI and AGP info Tool (07-11-2010): The PCI System information and Exploration tool (Dos Freeware).
- SIW 2010.10.21: Gathers detailed information about your system properties and settings (Windows Freeware).
- Speccy 1.06.191: an advanced System Information tool for your PC (Windows Freeware).
- SysChk 2.46: Find out exactly what is under the hood of your PC (Dos Freeware).
- System Analyser 5.3w: View extensive information about your hardware (Dos Freeware).
- USBDeview 1.81: View/Uninstall all installed/connected USB devices on your system (Windows Freeware).
- UnknownDevices 1.4.20 (07-11-2010): helps you find what those unknown devices in Device Manager really are (Windows Freeware).
- Update Checker 1.038: scans your computer for installed software and checks for newer releases on FileHippo (Windows Freeware).

Testing Tools

- Bart's Stuff Test 5.1.4: Long term heavy stress testing storage devices (Windows Freeware).
- CPU/Video/Disk Performance Test 5.7: a tool to test cpu, video, and disk (Dos Freeware).
- Disk Speed 1.0: Hard Disk Drive Speed Testing Tool (Windows Freeware).
- GoldMemory 5.07: Memory Diagnostic Tests (Dos Shareware).
- H2testw 1.4: Check your USB Flash memory cards, internal/external hard drives and network drives for errors with this tool (Windows Freeware).
- HDD Scan 3.3: HDDScan is a Low-level HDD diagnostic tool, it scans surface find bad sectors etc (Windows Freeware).
- IsMyLcdOK (Monitor Test) 1.02: Allows you to test CRT/LCD/TFT screens for dead pixels and diffective screens (Windows Freeware).
- MemTest 1.0: a Memory Testing Tool (Windows Freeware).
- Memtest86+ 4.15b: PC Memory Test (Linux Freeware).
- S&M Stress Test 1.9.1: cpu/hdd/memory benchmarking and information tool, including temperatures/fan speeds/voltages (Windows Freeware).
- System Speed Test 4.78: it tests CPU, harddrive, etc (Dos Freeware).
- Test Hard Disk Drive 1.0: a tool to test Hard Disk Drive (Dos Freeware).
- Video Memory Stress Test 1.7.116: a tool to thoroughly test your video RAM for errors and faults (Windows Freeware).
- Windows Memory Diagnostic: a RAM Test tool (Windows Freeware).


- Dial a Fix Fix errors and problems with COM/ActiveX object errors and missing registry entries, Automatic Updates, SSL, HTTPS, and Cryptography service (signing/verification) issues, Reinstall internet explorer etc. comes with the policy scanner (Windows Freeware).
- Disable Autorun: A small tweak which disables processing of autorun.inf to protect your PC from usb autorun viruses (Windows Freeware).
- Disable Compress Old Files: This registry tweak is useful when Disk Cleanup Tool Stops Responding While Compressing Old Files (Windows Freeware).
- EzPcFix Helpful tool when trying to remove viruses, spyware, and malware (Windows Freeware).
- InstalledCodec 1.15: Disable/Enable Installed Codec drivers and DirectShow filters (Windows Freeware).
- KeyTweak 2.3.0: a program to Remap Keyboard Layout, you can even customize a broken key to an unused key (Windows Freeware).
- Protect a Drive from Autorun Virus: Protect your pen drive from being infected when you plug it in an infected PC (Windows Freeware).
- RRT - Remove Restrictions Tool 3.0: to Re-enable Ctrl+Alt+Del, Folder Options and Registry tools etc (Windows Freeware).
- RemoveWGA 1.2: Windows Genuine Advantage Notifications Removal tool (Windows Freeware).
- Shell Extensions Manager (ShellExView) 1.47: An excellent tool to View and Manage all installed Context-menu/Shell extensions (Windows Freeware).
- ShellMenuNew 1.01: View/Change the list of all menu items in the 'New' submenu of Windows Explorer (Windows Freeware).
- Show Hidden Devices: Device Manager hides nonpresent devices that are not physically present in the system, but still have configuration information in the Registry (Windows Freeware).
- TweakUI 2.10: This PowerToy gives you access to system settings that are not exposed in Windows Xp (Windows Freeware).
- Ultimate Windows Tweaker 2.1: A TweakUI Utility for tweaking and optimizing Windows Vista (Windows Freeware).
- Write Protect USB Devices: Tweak your PC to make USB Pen Drive, Memory Card or Thumb Drive as Read Only (Windows Freeware).
- Xp-AntiSpy 3.97.9: it tweaks some Windows XP functions, and disables some unneeded Windows services quickly (Windows Freeware).
Filesize: 360.34 MB (377840583 bytes)
ISO MD5: 55A75B5F242E51CB4A08836C75855A35
ZIP MD5: 58B4BF23290E5A974A91E3D9848F26C2

Housing benefit cuts will stop social unrest, claims Cameron | Society | The Guardian

Prime Minister David Cameron Prime Minister David Cameron answering questions at the liaison committee Photograph: Ho/Reuters

Social unrest would have been likely if housing benefit payments had not been slashed, David Cameron said today after claims that his cuts would lead to an influx of poor families from inner cities to hard-pressed suburbs.

He challenged Margaret Hodge, the chair of the Public Accounts Committee, to join him in the streets of her home in Islington, north London, to find out whether the public supported the cuts.

The exchange was one of the few charged moments in a two-and-a-half-hour cross-examination by the chairs of Commons select committees, the first time Cameron had been questioned by the liaison committee.

In the session the prime minister also:

• Said there would be a bank holiday to celebrate the royal wedding, even if it is held at the weekend. The move was welcomed by St James's Palace.

• Disclosed his anger with the Ministry of Defence for repeatedly leaking documents.

• Urged the defence select committee to investigate why contracts were so tightly drawn that it was impossible to cancel the contract to build two aircraft carriers.

• Claimed the overseas aid budget was only publicly defensible if it was redirected to conflict prevention.

• Asserted that the chief constable of Thames Valley police, Sarah Thornton, had told him 15% cuts in her budget were achievable without damaging frontline operations.

In his exchanges on the housing benefit budget, Cameron said reform cuts were needed to prevent social unrest by taxpayers who believe it is unfair.

Hodge said he did not understand the anger in her Barking constituency in east London and warned about the impact on the extreme right. She said: "You said you support mixed communities but it's undoubtedly the case that the cap and housing benefit changes will mean that poorer people cannot afford to live in rented accommodation in Notting Hill, where you live, or Islington, where I live, or in Westminster, where we all work.

"And they will be forced out to areas like the one I represent, Barking, where there is pressure and social unrest caused by the very rapid changes in population and the lack of affordable housing.

"Is social unrest a price worth paying, and the impact that can have with the extreme right?"

Cameron replied: "Find me a street in your constituency and let's go down it together and let's ask people earning £20,000, £25,000, £30,000, whether they are happy to be paying towards people whose rent bills are £30,000, £40,000, £50,000 living in central London.

"I think that is more likely, frankly, to lead to social unrest when people find out how much money they're paying in taxes for people to live in houses they couldn't dream of living in themselves." Cameron said housing benefit had risen by 50% in the last five years. "Everyone accepts it's out of control and you've got to take some steps to deal with it," he said.

"We have been chasing ourselves round in a circuit of increased housing benefit, increased costs and all the while not building very many houses. We have had big capital allocations into housing for the last decade, but it has pushed up the price of land – anyone who owns a bit of land outside one of the towns we represent has done very well, but we seem not have built many houses."

He claimed the new homes bonus would lead to an increase in housebuilding since councils will be able to keep the extra revenue.

He also gave a rebuke about the persistent leaks from the Ministry of Defence, saying: "That department seems to have a bit of a problem with leaks which is worrying when it is the department responsible for security. Leaked letters don't help. They add to the public pressures."

He hailed the greater certainty caused by the defence review, and appeared to suggest that Downing Street had played a hand in asking the defence chiefs to sign a letter to the Times attacking the former first sea lord Lord West after he criticised navy cuts. Later the ministry said the initiative came from the defence chiefs.

He said the decisions over carriers and aircraft "was the most difficult decision at the heart of the defence review and was discussed over and over again".

On higher education, he insisted the reforms were more progressive than the previous system of tuition fees.

Doctors warned to expect unrest over NHS reforms | Society | The Guardian

Clare Gerada Clare Gerada, chairman of the Royal College of GPs. She predicts trouble for doctors from a public angry at Conservative NHS reforms. Photograph: Frank Baron for the Guardian

Doctors face demonstrations outside their surgeries and questions about their high salaries by angry patients because of the government's radical NHS shakeup, the new leader of Britain's GPs warns.

Desperate patients denied life-extending drugs or surgery for their ailments may also vent their frustrations on GPs, because they are due to assume control of deciding how £80bn-a-year of health funding is spent, said Dr Clare Gerada, who takes over tomorrow as chair of the Royal College of GPs.

In an outspoken attack on health secretary Andrew Lansley's NHS reform plans, she also hit out at his decision to transfer responsibility for rationing access to treatment from the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice) and primary care trusts to GPs in England from 2013.

"At worst, the negative impact for GPs could be patients lobbying outside their front door, saying, 'You've got a nice BMW car but you will not allow me to have this cytotoxic drug that will give me three more months of life,'" Gerada told the Guardian in an interview.

"I'm concerned that my profession, GPs, will be exposed to lobbying by patients, patient groups and the pharma industry to fund or commission their bit of the service. There could be letters from MPs and patient groups, and begging letters from patients."

Making GPs "the new rationers" of NHS care could ruin the long-established bonds of trust between them and their patients, undermine "the sacredness of the consultation" and turn patients into little more than "customers" who shop around trying to get the best treatment for their ailment, Gerada added. Inherent conflicts of interest in the new system could also jeopardise GP-patient relationships, she warned. "Patients might think that the decision made about their healthcare will be based on self-interest – GPs saving money for themselves rather than spending it on patients." Certain treatment decisions, and a GP consortium's need to balance its books "could be misconstrued".

The NHS will not survive intact Lansley's plans to scrap many existing NHS bodies, introduce GP commissioning and push through greater competition between hospitals, she predicted.

"I think it is the end of the NHS as we currently know it, which is a national, unified health service, with central policies and central planning, in the way that [Aneurin] Bevan imagined," said 51-year-old Gerada, who represents Britain's 40,000 family doctors. Lansley's shakeup will lead to a much greater role for private healthcare companies, the likelihood that England's health system will look more and more like America's, and GPs being blamed for things such as the NHS's inability to cope with a winter crisis, long waiting lists and the decommissioning of services to save money, she added.

GPs in their new role will bear the brunt of the NHS's need to save £20bn by 2014, which will lead to far more "postcode lotteries" in services such as IVF, expensive drugs, and even access to particular hospital specialists such as surgeons and gynaecologists. Leaving each of the new GP consortiums to decide individually what treatment should or should not be available locally will lead to disputes over access to care. "I don't understand why he's putting in a system that in Scunthorpe you can get a different service to Scarborough, when we've spent the last 60 years working against that", said Gerada. Her comments are the most detailed criticism yet made by any senior doctor of Lansley's plans, which have caused serious unease among medical organisations.

John Healey, Labour's shadow health secretary, used them to portray Lansley as dogmatic and out-of-touch. "These criticisms from an influential GP again reveal how Andrew Lansley is failing to listen to the warnings of doctors, nurses and health experts to slow down on his high-cost, high-risk plans," said Healey.

"With plans for the biggest reorganisation in the NHS's history, it is also becoming clear that he is running a rogue department, operating in isolation from his colleagues in government."

Healey echoed Gerada's concern about patients in future questioning GPs' motivations. "Patients will worry about treatment decisions – are they being taken in their best interest or the best interest of the GP consortium's budget?"

The British Medical Association warned the changes could see the NHS fragment. Dr Laurence Buckman, chairman of the BMA's GPs committee, agreed with some of Gerada's concerns. "GPs are fully aware of the difficulties facing the NHS as we enter a very difficult financial period and that tough decisions will have to be taken. The BMA has repeatedly expressed its concerns about the timing of the white paper proposals as well as the potential risks and benefits that may result from the government's plans," he said.

Prof Chris Ham, chief executive of the King's Fund health thinktank, endorsed Gerada's view that Lansley should move more slowly. "With international evidence this week showing our health system performing well compared to other countries, and the NHS facing significant financial pressures over the next few years, evolutionary change building on existing arrangements offers a more promising route to improving the NHS than radical structural changes," he said.

A Department of Health spokeswoman said: "Our reforms will indeed mark a new era for the NHS – one where patients and clinicians are at the heart of the service. Our reforms aren't an option, they are a necessity in order to sustain and improve our NHS. The reforms are far-reaching but they also build upon existing designs. We share a common goal with the RCGP that we all want patients to get the best health and care services."

But she added: "We understand concerns around implementation. That's why we have consulted extensively on our plans, and have already announced a programme where GP consortia can start testing white paper principles. We will announce the outcome of the consultation later this year. We believe that both purpose and pace are vital to improve services for patients."

Burma’s junta finds fault with Internet users after bombs discovered | Asian Correspondent

Four time-bombs planted at an internet café in Kyauktada Township were defused yesterday evening, the New Light of Myanmar reports on Friday, November 19, 2010.

The paper also says, according to citizens’ information, four time-bombs were discovered by local officials under a table at Star Net internet café opened at the ground floor of City Star Hotel in Kyauktada Township and officials defused the bombs.

A retired army officer who wishes to remain anonymous said that it seemed a nonsense story. “When I heard the bombs news, I’m really worried about Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, generals may be jealous of her successful public meetings,” he said.

As a result, after explosive devices were found in the Sky Net Internet Cafe located near Rangoon City Hall, Rangoon authorities have instructed Internet cafe owners to install CCTV cameras within three days in order to monitor Internet users, as said by the Irrawaddy News.

The owners were told to keep the CCTV footage and report weekly to the township office.

“The township officer said we must be aware of people who are using proxy servers to surf the restricted websites, such as exile media and blogs. If we find someone doing this, we must take the user's identity numbers and inform the authorities,” referring to the Internet cafe owner the Irrawaddy said.

The junta scares the effectiveness of the Internet as a ghost that helps the users and the public sharing information, especially about the military’s infamous stories. The military junta believes Internet users are threats to military power as the international community watch the junta’s brutal crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrations, human rights abuses, rapes, murders, land confiscation, conscription of child soldiers, etc. through news and reports from online media, watchdog groups and citizen journalists launched on the Internet.

Two officials have been sentenced to death by a court in Burma for leaking information, official sources say, in a case reportedly involving secret ties between the ruling junta and North Korea. The men were arrested after details and photos about a trip to Pyongyang by the then Burma junta's third-in-command, General Shwe Mann, were leaked out through the Internet.

The two men sentenced to death were Win Naing Kyaw and Thura Kyaw, while the imprisoned third person was revealed just as Pyan Sein, with no further details of the case. Win Naing Kyaw is a former military officer and Thura Kyaw and Pyan Sein worked at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, according to the Irrawaddy.

If the junta is sincere about democratic reforms, the media as well as Internet must be free at the outset. Nowadays, access to information and the Internet is vital to a healthy democracy.

Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says, “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers."

But in Burma, Internet users as well as journalists and media personnel are under the strictest rules of the stratocracy. In most countries, journalists or media workers can do their jobs freely via Internet and live well. But in military-ruled Burma, it is very problematic and unsafe  to be a journalist or an Internet user.

The junta has shown no respect for successive resolutions adopted by the U.N. General Assembly calling for the return of a democratic system in Burma. The United Nations, United Sates and European Union are still urging the junta to launch a dialogue between Senior General Than Shwe and the opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi in pursuit of reconciliation, but Than Shwe continues to turn a deaf ear to world opinion

Cliff O'Sullivan - #tweetstorm4gary - Nov 20th 2010 - #freeGary now! - TwitVid

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Suu Kyi and UN chief make call for prisoner release

Suu Kyi and UN chief make call for prisoner release

Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo and his wife Liu Xia pose in this undated photo released by his family on October 3, 2010. Imprisoned Chinese pro-democracy activist Liu Xiaobo won the Nobel Peace Prize on October 8, 2010, an announcement that Beijing had anticipated and bitterly criticised.

Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo and his wife Liu Xia pose in this undated photo released by his family on October 3, 2010. Imprisoned Chinese pro-democracy activist Liu Xiaobo won the Nobel Peace Prize on October 8, 2010, an announcement that Beijing had anticipated and bitterly criticised.

Photograph by: Handout, Reuters

UNITED NATIONS - Democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called for the release of all political prisoners in Myanmar on Thursday while a UN committee condemned human rights in Myanmar despite Chinese opposition.

China also vociferously defended the Myanmar junta in UN Security Council consultations held to discuss the release of Suu Kyi and the much criticized national election held on November 7.

Ban and Suu Kyi held their first talks by telephone, the UN said.

They "stressed the need for the Myanmar authorities to release all remaining political prisoners as a matter of priority so that all citizens of Myanmar are free to contribute to advancing the prospects of national reconciliation and democratic transition in Myanmar," said a UN statement.

The Nobel Peace Prize winning opposition leader has made the estimated 2,100 political prisoners still in Myanmar jails her campaign priority, according to diplomats.

Forty-six nations — European countries, the United States, Australia, Canada and New Zealand — presented a resolution in the UN General Assembly's main human rights committee which expressed "gravest concern" at Myanmar's rights record and saying the November 7 election was not "free and fair".

The resolution, which highlighted political prisoners, the use of torture and inhuman treatment, child soldiers and attacks on civilians, was backed by 96 nations and opposed by 28 with 60 abstaining.

China strongly attacked the motion. "Finger pointing does not protect human rights," China's representative told the committee meeting."

He said the resolution "does not recognize the progress that has been made," added the diplomat praising the election from which Aung San Suu Kyi's party was banned and most seats went to pro-junta groups.

Russia also opposed the resolution. Myanmar's ambassador Than Swe called the resolution "seriously flawed".

Suu Kyi expressed support for a visit by the secretary general's special adviser on Myanmar "and her desire to engage with him for pushing ahead in addressing the challenges facing the people of Myanmar," the UN statement said.

UN adviser, Vijay Nambiar, had pressed for a visit to Myanmar before the election. But the junta had only agreed for him to go after the vote and Nambiar turned this down, diplomats said.

The Security Council also discussed whether Nambiar could meet the junta. It could not agree a general statement for the press, with China again praising the election and defending the junta against Western criticism, diplomats said.

Ban visited Myanmar last year but was not allowed to see Suu Kyi, who was released from almost two decades of detention and house arrest on Saturday.

Ban told Suu Kyi "he was encouraged by the spirit of reconciliation emanating from her statements and appeals for dialogue and compromise following her release."

The UN leader reiterated the United Nations commitment "to uphold the cause of human rights and support all efforts by the government, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and all other stakeholders to build a united, peaceful, democratic and modern future for their country."

Junta evicts Aids patients after visit by Aung San Suu Kyi

Junta evicts Aids patients after visit by Aung San Suu Kyi

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Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – Junta authorities have ordered Aids patients out of one of the National League for Democracy sponsored centres that Aung San Suu Kyi visited on Wednesday and into a government hospital, against their will. In response, NLD members and independent candidates who lost in recent elections reached a deal yesterday to establish a network that would start helping people living with HIV and Aids, a network member said.

Independent candidate Dr. Phone Win, who stood for a seat in the People’s Assembly, said the network would start by taking action against local authorities’ ban on permitting guest registration for the 66 HIV/Aids patients living at the South Dagon HIV/Aids “salvation centre”. The centre in the Rangoon satellite town is managed by a team led by NLD central committee member Phyu Phyu Thin.


Aung San Suu Kyi walks among residents of a National League for Democracy community home for people living with HIV in South Dagon Township, Rangoon, handing out roses to each of them, before offering encouragement and the promise of a better medicine supply, on Wednesday, November 17, 2010. Local junta officials have responded by harassing the patients and ordering them out of the centres and either into destitute government hospitals or back to their home provinces, using housing registration rules as justification. Photo: Mizzima

It appears junta authorities are using registration regulations and brute force out of spite over Suu Kyi’s visit to the NLD-run Aids hospice. Under junta laws, if a Burmese citizen wants to stay overnight at a friend’s home or anywhere else they are not listed on house registers, the citizen must report the visit to ward authorities. The reporting is usually however a formality seldom refused. The ward authorities appear to be using this regulation to thwart NLD activities.

He said 11 independent candidates and senior NLD leaders Suu Kyi, Win Tin, Tin Oo and Phyu Phyu Thin reached the agreement at a two-hour meeting this morning at party headquarters.

“Daw Suu talked to us about establishing a network to carry out practical work. She then asked if we would like to assist with the forced evictions of these [Aids] patients being looked after by Phyu Phyu Thin … We shall help them,” Phone Win told Mizzima.

The Independents’ Democratic Group, comprising Dr. Phone Win, Yuzar Maw Tun, Tin San, San Myint, Moe Tun and Thein Dan, took responsibility for exerting pressure on departments concerned via donors for the patients’ right to freedom of residence and to receive treatment. It issued a statement yesterday saying HIV/Aids patients had the fundamental right to freedom of movement and residence and that they could stay at the residence of their choice.

The statement added that freedom of choice in political and social situations were also fundamental rights.

Another independent candidate who attended today’s meeting had stood for Pazundaung Pyithu Hluttaw constituency. He said: “Phyu Phyu Thin’s patients come from rural areas and provinces so they have difficulty in getting guest registration. Daw Suu discussed our co-operation in this work and getting medicines for them. She emphasised … carrying out our work within the legal framework.”

The HIV/Aids salvation centres were established in 2002 by NLD central committee member Phyu Phyu Thin and youth members with assistance from the NLD’s social-aid wing.

Meanwhile, patients from one of the centres have been ordered to move to a government hospital against their will.

South Dagon Township Peace and Development Council chairman ordered that the Aids patients visited by Suu Kyi on Wednesday should go into the Tharketa Hospital, according to Htin Aung, manager of the salvation centres.

“They gave the patients five days to move. They say that if the patients continue to stay here, they will take disciplinary action. They said that the salvation centres were neither homes for the aged nor hospitals and that we had not registered the patients with the ward authorities. They said that our centres were like family homes, and that this many people could not live in them,” Htin Aung said.

Township chairman Ko Ko Hlaing gave the order to Htin Aung yesterday, he said. Ko Ko Hlaing ordered that the patients must be presented for admission to the hospital or return to their own homes before November 25.

The official promised that the authorities would give the patients rice, cooking oil, salt, beds and mattresses and would provide transport, if they went to the hospital. The patients however were reluctant to move to the hospital because of government hospitals’ poor services.

“We feel comfortable at this centre. And we were glad to meet Ahmay [mother] Suu. When they ordered to move us, we were sad”, one of the patients, Win Win Naing, whose home is in Dedaye town in Irrawaddy Division, told Mizzima.

She added that she would neither go to the hospital nor return home, and that she would take the risk of being arrested.

Suu Kyi had visited the community salvation centres in South Dagon and North Dagon townships on Wednesday to offer the patients encouragement and while there, promised them better medicines.

Sixteen patients at the North Dagon centre were not ordered into a hospital. Ohn Kyaing, an NLD spokesman, said he would find out why the authorities from South Dagon Township had in effect evicted the patients.

The HIV/Aids “salvation centres” were established by NLD young people led by NLD central committee member Phyu Phyu Thin since 2002.

Talking Teenage - Hot Topics - Did I Say That?

As parents of teens, you not only want what's best for your children but you also want to think the best of them. Here are some statements that parents hoped were true but eventually wished that they hadn't said. See if you can relate to any of them.

!. My kid would never have a party while we're away.

2. Alcohol? Nope! My sister was an alcoholic. My daughter knows about the problems related to drinking.

3. Of course, my daughter is not sexually active.

4. My child would never gossip.

5. I wish that my son would be more like my neighbor's son.

6. Sexting?! Not my kid.

7. No, he would never try marijuana. He's the captain of the soccer team.

8. Of course, his grades will be good.

9. If he wasn't friends with ____, he would never have done that.

10. She knows not to connect with strangers on the internet.

11. She would never post inappropriate pictures on Facebook.

12. My son would never cut class. The teacher must have made an error.

13. He would never lie.

14. My daughter would never stay at a party where there was alcohol.

15. My son would never smoke cigarettes. He's the one who encouraged me to quit smoking.

16. Speak rudely to a teacher? Not my son.

17. My daughter would never get a tattoo or piercing without my permission.

18. Of course, she wants to go to college.

19. Texting while driving-my kid knows better!

20. Military? My son does not want to join the military.






Friday, 19 November 2010 - Torelli’s ‘Uncloudy’ Cloud Moment

Torelli’s ‘Uncloudy’ Cloud Moment

Posted by Steve Kovsky Nov 19, 2010 12:25 PM

There is an old folk song that talks about the promise of “an uncloudy day,” a time and place where everything is clear, serene and peaceful. Sounds pretty tempting — especially if you operate a typical small to midsize business (SMB), where clarity and serenity are seldom the order of the day.

I had a glimpse of an uncloudy day recently during an outing with Todd Linscott, owner and CEO of Torelli Bicycle Company in North Hollywood, Calif. If you’ve been following this series, you know that Torelli is the subject of an ambitious technology makeover project, in which his four-person importing company received a transformative enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution, courtesy of SAP and its implementation partner, Navigator Business Solutions.

The moment of clarity came, ironically, not in spite of clouds, but actually because of the cloud. The cloud I’m referring to is the Internet cloud, where the Torelli’s integrated ERP application resides. I accompanied Todd on an outing to visit one of his favorite customers, Topanga Creek Bicycles in the Santa Monica Mountains. The rustic bike shop is located on a picturesque bend in the road that winds through Topanga Canyon, a circuitous stretch of two-lane highway that connects Southern California’s San Fernando Valley with the storied beaches of Malibu.

While I hunted for a stray cellular signal to make a tenuous connection back to the outside world, Todd quietly tapped into his cloud-based ERP system using the store’s Wi-Fi connection. He had instant access to real-time inventory and sales information, getting a quick update on store owner Chris Kelly’s recent purchases. He then entered some new purchase orders, negotiated a few minutes earlier over cups of fresh-brewed coffee served around Kelly’s cozy wood-burning stove.

For Linscott and Torelli, it was another small milestone in the larger process of reinventing their 30-year-old company. At the same time, it was a rare opportunity to see how deploying the latest ERP tools and solutions can part the clouds that obscure access to real-time data for most SMBs. While the “uncloudy day” referred to in the song is a paradise beyond this world, this was an example of how new, cloud-based software can help SMBs begin reach that place “where no storm clouds fly,” where business can be conducted seamlessly, and customers can be left with a smile, regardless of location or time of day.

Chris Kelly of Topanga Creek Bicycles captured the moment for posterity as the InformationWeek SMB video crew descended on his small shop to document Torelli’s “uncloudy” cloud experience. Stay tuned for the complete video documentary. In he meantime, please tell us how your company plans to dispel the gathering storm clouds and gain actionable, real-time insight into your business processes.

BBC News - Families denied legal aid for epilepsy drug court case

8 November 2010 Last updated at 02:48

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Families denied legal aid for epilepsy drug court case

A coloured CT scan of a brain Sodium valproate - or epilim - is taken to prevent seizures in the brain

Dozens of families who blame an epilepsy drug for causing birth defects in their children say they are devastated that legal aid to sue its maker has been withdrawn.

Women who took sodium valproate in the 1990s claim they were not given adequate warnings of possible harm.

The Legal Services Commission, which runs legal aid, has concluded the case is not sufficiently likely to succeed.

Manufacturer Sanofi Aventis denies failing to provide proper warnings.

Spina bifida

About 80 families have begun action for damages against the firm, claiming the drug - also known as epilim - caused severe disabilities in children including spina bifida, heart damage and learning difficulties.

BBC health correspondent Adam Brimelow said the refusal of legal aid meant this action, which had been seven years in the planning, now appeared close to falling apart just days before it was due to go to the High Court.

Karen Buck and John Coyle with their severely handicapped daughter Bridget Karen Buck and John Coyle say they were not made aware of any risks while pregnant with Bridget

Karen Buck and John Coyle, whose daughter Bridget is severely disabled, said they were devastated legal aid had been pulled just before the case was due to be heard.

Mr Coyle, from Stanmore in north-west London, told the BBC: "As a family we feel devastated because the case has gone on for over six years and the legal aid have funded it all the way along.

"Everybody has the belief that it [the case] has a better chance of winning than not, and just everybody is devastated that the finances have been pulled."

Bridget's mother took an increased dose of epilim during her pregnancy in 1997/8, but said she was not made aware of any potential risks to her child.

Her daughter has spina bifida, is unable to walk or talk, has epilepsy herself, and requires 24-hour care.

Mr Coyle said: "There didn't seem to be any information available at the time Karen fell pregnant about taking epilim in pregnancy.

"I think the information has definitely improved quite a lot. They've become more aware and have accepted more that there are a lot of risks of problems in pregnancy with epilim, I'm not sure the drug company has accepted full responsibility."

Sanofi Aventis said it had sympathy for the claimants but insisted it had always provided appropriate warnings.

The company said it regularly provided authorities with updated safety data.

Epilepsy is the most common serious neurological disorder affecting people of all ages, with one person in 50 expected to develop it at some time in their life.

Sodium valproate is prescribed to people with epilepsy to prevent seizures in the brain.

General Assembly Will Hold ‘World Conference on Indigenous Peoples’ in 2014, under Terms of Resolution Recommended by Third Committee

Sixty-fifth General Assembly

Third Committee

46th Meeting (AM)

General Assembly Will Hold ‘World Conference on Indigenous Peoples’ in 2014,

Under Terms of Resolution Recommended by Third Committee


Also Approves Five Other Texts on Extrajudicial Executions, Leprosy,

United Nations Refugee High Commissioner, Practices Fuelling Racism, Globalization

Concerned about the extreme social and economic disadvantages that indigenous peoples have faced, the Third Committee approved a draft resolution today that would have the General Assembly organize a high-level plenary meeting in 2014 — to be known as the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples in 2014 -- to share perspectives and best practices on the realization of indigenous peoples’ rights.

Approved without a vote, the document would invite the President of the General Assembly to determine the modalities for the high-level meeting, including indigenous peoples’ participation at the Conference, through open-ended consultations with Member States, indigenous people’s representatives in the framework of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples.

The Assembly would also expand the mandate of the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Indigenous Populations, so that it could assist representatives of indigenous peoples’ organizations and communities to participate in sessions of the Human Rights Council and human rights treaty bodies.

The draft resolution on indigenous issues was one of six that the Committee took action on this morning, addressing such issues as extrajudicial executions, contemporary forms of racism, discrimination against persons affected by leprosy, globalization’s impact on the enjoyment of human rights and the work of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

During action on the draft resolution on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, the Committee engaged in a debate over and ultimately approved by a vote of 79 in favour to 70 against with 17 abstentions an amendment removing “sexual orientation” as one of the discriminatory reasons that killings had been committed and warranted investigation.

The representative of Benin, on behalf of the African Group, the main sponsor of the amendment, said that sexual orientation had no legal foundation in any international human rights instruments and there was no legal justification to highlight it.  St. Lucia stated that listing specific groups was dangerous because it could lead to the omission of some people and legal manipulation by following the letter of the law in an unintended way, while Morocco asserted that such selectivity should be avoided because it accommodated particular interests and groups over others.  South Africa added that a formal process to define sexual orientation and its parameters under human rights law was needed to prevent future division on the issue.

On the other hand, the representative of Sweden stated that sexual orientation had often been the motive for extrajudicial killings, and the deletion of the reference would amount to the Committee looking the other way concerning arbitrary executions based on sexual orientation.  Both Finland and France noted that the reference to sexual orientation had been included in the resolution since 1999, based on the Special Rapporteur’s concern for homosexuals that had been victims of such crimes – a concern that still persisted.  Switzerland pointed out that homophobic violence was still a reality caused by law enforcement forces in many countries.

In the end, the draft resolution, by which the General Assembly would strongly condemn all extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions that continued throughout the world and demand that all States ensure the practice of such executions be brought to an end, had sufficient agreement to be approved by a vote of 165 in favour to 0 against, with 10 abstentions.

The Committee approved the draft resolution on the inadmissibility of certain practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance by a recorded vote of 118 in favour to 1 against, with 55 abstaining.  The draft resolution on globalization and its impact on the full enjoyment of all human rights was approved by a recorded vote of 123 in favour to 53 against, with 0 abstaining.  The draft resolutions on enlargement of the Executive Committee of the Programme of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, as well as elimination of discrimination against persons affected by leprosy and their family members were adopted without a vote.

During action on draft resolutions, statements and explanations of vote were also made by the representatives of Bolivia, United Kingdom, Russian Federation, Belarus, Benin, Belgium (on behalf of the European Union), United States, Switzerland, Sudan, Cuba, Iran, Jamaica, Norway, Japan, Egypt, Brazil and Chile.

Also, a draft resolution on follow-up to the Durban Declaration was introduced by the representative of Yemen (on behalf of the Group of 77 and China).


The Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) met today to hear the introduction of a draft resolution entitled Global efforts for the total elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance and the comprehensive implementation of and follow-up to the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action (document A/C.3/65/L.60).

It was also expected to take action on the following draft resolutions; Enlargement of the Executive Committee of the Programme of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (document A/C.3/65/L.24/Rev.1); Indigenous issues (document A/C.3/65/L.22/Rev.1); Inadmissibility of certain practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance (document A/C.3/65/L.50); Extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions (document A/C.3/65/L.29/Rev.1 and an amendment thereto contained in document A/C.3/65/L.65), Elimination of discrimination against persons affected by leprosy and their family members (document A/C.3/65/L.37) and Globalization and its impact on the full enjoyment of all human rights (document A/C.3/65/L.38).

Introduction on Draft Resolution

The Committee first heard the introduction of a draft resolution entitled Global efforts for the total elimination of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance and the comprehensive implementation of and follow-up to the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action (document A/C.3/65/L.60), by the representative of Yemen, on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.

He said that, throughout the past 10 years, the world community had witnessed difficult progress in the implementation of the Durban Declaration to eradicate the scourge of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.  New manifestations of racism were being seen and they must be confronted.  In the current session, document L.60 was being presented to the Committee, with a focus on the forthcoming 10th anniversary of the 2000 World Congress against Racism, to be held in New York in September 2011.  The event provided a timely opportunity to mobilize the political will of heads of States. The co-sponsors would like to see the 10th year commemoration celebrated in a different manner, with the culmination and being adoption of an outcome showing global resolve to end racism.

The text incorporated general principles that guided the fight against racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, he said.  It included the issue of racism in sports, shown through the “Say No to Racism” campaign during the recent FIFA World Cup.  That legacy started in Germany and was encouraged to continue in Brazil and the 2014 World Cup.  The work of the Special Rapporteur and some of his recommendations had been included in the resolution, to ensure that there was a follow-up on the matters he raised. Work on the Durban follow-up mechanisms was also included.  The practical implementation of the Durban Declaration could be seen in the decision to erect a monument to the victims of the transatlantic slave trade, and there was a call for financial support to finalize that decision.  The co-sponsors hoped the resolution would be adopted by consensus, and they would show flexibility by not tabling a separate resolution concerning the high-level event to commemorate the 10th anniversary, with the understanding that a facilitator would be appointed to carry out that task.

Action on Resolutions

The Committee then took action on a draft resolution regarding Enlargement of the Executive Committee of the Programme of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (document A/C.3/65/L.24/Rev.1).

It would have the General Assembly decide to increase the number of members of the Executive Committee of the Programme of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees from 79 to 84 States, and request the Economic and Social Council to elect the additional members at its resumed organizational session for 2011.

The draft was approved without a vote.

The Committee then took action on a draft resolution on Indigenous issues (document A/C.3/65/L.22/Rev.1).

By its terms, the General Assembly would approve the expansion of the mandate of the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Indigenous Populations in order to facilitate the participation of representatives of indigenous peoples’ organizations in sessions of the Human Rights Council and of human rights treaty bodies.  The Assembly would also decide to organize, under the auspices of the United Nations, a world Indigenous Peoples’ Conference in 2014, to adopt measures to pursue the objectives of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and invite the President of the General Assembly to begin consultations with Member States to determine the modalities of the conference.

The representative of Bolivia summarized the contents of the draft resolution and made an oral amendment.  It was a great honour to announce that the list of co-sponsors now included the United States, Canada, New Zealand and Brazil.  Bolivia very respectfully invited other delegations to consider joining the co-sponsors.

The draft was then approved as orally revised without a vote.

The representative of the United Kingdom expressed support for the draft on the understanding that the rights of indigenous peoples were as set out in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.  The concept of collective law in international law, apart from the right of peoples to self-determination, was not recognized by the United Kingdom, which considered it important that individual rights not be superseded by collective rights. Collective rights could be granted only as a matter of national law.

The Committee then took action on a draft resolution on Inadmissibility of certain practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance (document A/C.3/65/L.50).

By its terms, the General Assembly would express deep concern about the glorification of the Nazi movement and former members of the Waffen SS organization, including by erecting monuments and memorials and holding public demonstrations in the name of the glorification of the Nazi past, the Nazi movement and neo-Nazism, as well as by declaring or attempting to declare such members and those who fought against the anti-Hitler coalition and collaborated with the Nazi movement participants in national liberation movements.  It would also express concern at recurring attempts to desecrate or demolish monuments erected in remembrance of those who fought against Nazism during the Second World War, as well as to unlawfully exhume or remove the remains of such persons.  It would note with concern the increase in racist incidents in several countries and the rise of skinhead groups, which have been responsible for many of these incidents, as well as the resurgence of racist and xenophobic violence targeting members of ethnic, religious or cultural communities and national minorities.

The Assembly would stress that such practices do injustice to the memory of the victims of crimes against humanity committed in the Second World War, while at the same time fueling racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, and contribute to the multiplication of extremist political parties, movements and groups, including neo-Nazis and skinhead groups.  In that regard, it would call for increased political and legal vigilance, and call upon States to take more effective measures in accordance with international human rights law to combat those phenomena and the extremist movements, which pose a real threat to democratic values.

The representative of the Russian Federation, the main sponsor, who made an oral amendment to the draft, said this year was the sixty-fifth anniversary of the victory in the Second World War, as well as the Nuremberg trials.  Sixty-five years had also passed since “our fathers and grandfathers” united against the forces of evil and called themselves the United Nations.  They had come together for the future; why should their example be rejected?  At issue was not political correctness, but the horrors of National Socialism and the rise of extremist groups, including neo-Nazis and skinheads, who often found inspiration in practices that the United Nations had been created to combat.  During negotiations on the text, some had insisted that victory in the Second World War was unrelated to international human rights standards and that glorifying Nazism has nothing to do with human rights.  That argument could not have been made 20 or 30 years ago, when veterans of the Second World War were still alive; how could it possibly be made now?  Adoption of the resolution with the broadest possible support would contribute to combating racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related forms of intolerance.

The representative of Belarus noted the urgency of the resolution.  It would provide the young generation with a moral reference point.  Events linked to Nazism were still remembered in his country, which lost about a third of its people in the Second World War.  As a famous Russian poet had said, this was not for the dead, but for the living.  Belarus would vote in favour of the draft.

The Chair, MICHEL TOMMO MONTHE ( Cameroon) said a recorded vote had been requested.  When asked by the representative of the Russian Federation which delegation had asked for the vote, the Chair replied the United States.

In an explanation of vote before the vote, the representative of Belgium, on behalf of the European Union, called neo-Nazism an abhorrent manifestation of racism and racial discrimination.  Its threat had to be confronted at local, national and international levels.  Neo-Nazism sought to undermine the core values of the United Nations.  However, the fight against all manifestations of racism and xenophobia should not be used for extraneous purposes.  Despite its desire to contribute to making the draft a comprehensive and credible response to racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related forms of intolerance, some of its most serious concerns had not been addressed.  As in past years, the draft was selective; it also contained language that would undermine a comprehensive approach, under which the Special Rapporteur on the issue would report to Human Rights Council and the General Assembly regularly.  The European Union remained strongly committed to fighting racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related forms of intolerance and it remained ready to work on a text that would make a strong contribution in that regard.  It would abstain from voting on the draft.

The representative of the United States said that his country had a deep commitment to honouring the memory of the lives lost in the Holocaust.  However, it remained concerned that the resolution failed to distinguish between actions and statements that, while offensive, were protected by freedom of expression.  The United States shared concern over the growing number of racist expressions; however, it did not believe in curtaining the freedom of expression.  Individual freedom of speech should be robustly protected, even when ideas were full of hatred.  Hateful ideas would fail because of their lack of merit.  Offensive speech should not be criminalized.  Instead, there should be measures such as proactive government outreach to minority groups and the vigorous defence of freedom of speech and religion.  For those reasons, the United States would vote against the resolution.

The Committee then, approved the resolution on practices that fuel racism (A/C.3/65/L.50) by a recorded vote of 118 in favour to 1 against ( United States) with 55 abstaining.

After the vote, the representative of Switzerland said it regretted there had been only one informal meeting and that the concerns of some countries were not taken into account.  Switzerland had abstained, because the resolution only referred to some forms of racism, and it believed that issues that fuelled racism were not limited to one historical period, but could be found throughout history.

The Committee then took action on a draft resolution on Extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions (document A/C.3/65/L.29/Rev.1).

By its terms, the General Assembly would again strongly condemn all the extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions that continue to occur throughout the world, and demand that all States ensure that the practice of such executions is brought to an end and that they take effective action to prevent, combat and eliminate the phenomenon in all its forms and manifestations.  It would reiterate the obligation of all States to investigate all suspected cases of extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, to bring to justice those responsible, to grant compensation to the victims or their families, and to adopt legal and judicial measures to put an end to impunity and to prevent the further occurrence of such executions.

In addition, the Assembly would urge all States to take all necessary and possible measures, in conformity with international human rights law and international humanitarian law, to prevent loss of life, in particular that of children, during public demonstrations, internal and communal violence, civil unrest, public emergencies or armed conflicts.  It would also urge States to prevent and, where such situations exist, to end prisoner control of prisons, and call upon those States that are under an obligation to cooperate with the International Criminal Court to provide such cooperation and assistance in the future, in particular with regard to arrest and surrender, the provision of evidence, the protection and relocation of victims and witnesses and the enforcement of sentences.  It would go on to express its concern over the occurrence of vigilante killings and encourage States, in order to support efforts to prevent and end such killings, to undertake or facilitate systematic studies of the phenomenon, with a view to taking necessary legislative, judicial, administrative, and educative measures.

A proposed amendment (document A/C.3/65/L.65) would, in operative paragraph six, replace the words “any discriminatory reason, including sexual orientation” with the words “discriminatory reasons on any basis”.

The representative of Finland, the main sponsor, said the list of co-sponsors had grown to 58 countries.  However, it had not been possible to reach consensus on a reference to sexual orientation.

The Chair drew attention to the proposed amendment.  The representative of Benin, its main sponsor, on behalf of the African Group, said the Group had repeatedly asked during informal negotiations for language that would bring needed comprehensiveness to the draft resolution.  Sexual discrimination had no legal foundation in any international human rights instruments and there was no justification to highlight it.  It was in the spirit of reaching consensus that the amendment, phrased in generic language, was being put forward.  Comprehensiveness rather than selectivity was the key to ensuring the commitment of the international community against extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions.  If the international community wanted to discuss sexual orientation, it should do so in a direct way, in an agreed format, on another occasion.

The representative of Finland said the proposed amendment was unacceptable. She requested a recorded vote.

The representative of Morocco, on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, said the Group was seriously concerned by controversial and undefined notions that had no foundation in international human rights instruments. Intolerance and discrimination existed in cases of colour, race, gender and religion, to mention only a few.  Selectivity intended to accommodate certain interests over others had to be avoided by the international community.  Such selectivity would set a precedent that would change the human rights paradigm in order to suit the interests of particular groups.  An attempt to create new rights was a matter of concern for the Group.  All Member States were urged to continue to devote special attention to the protection of the family as the natural and fundamental unit of society.

Wishing to make a general statement before the vote, the representative of Sweden said that, as one of the main sponsors, Sweden objected to the proposal to amend the resolution, by deleting the term “sexual orientation”.  Sexual orientation had often been the motive for extrajudicial killings. The deletion of the reference would amount to the Committee looking the other way concerning arbitrary executions based on sexual orientation.  States would not live up to their obligation to investigate and bring to justice those who committed such crimes.  Denying the right to life and disregarding those in a vulnerable situation would not be acceptable to Sweden, so it would vote against the amendment.  Sweden appealed to others to show that they did not condone unlawful killings and also to vote against the amendment.

As a traditional co-sponsor of the resolution, Switzerland said that it would vote against the amendment.  Protection of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals was important.  It was not an issue of protecting a specific group, but that a group would not be protected.  Switzerland could not accept that lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals would not be covered.  The reference to sexual orientation was not a general reference with regard to commitment. Switzerland believed that the reference was particularly important in this context and that people who were particularly threatened should be included.  It was important to point out that homophobic violence was a reality caused by law enforcement forces in many countries throughout the world.  The number of people killed on the basis of sexual identity had reached new levels, which was a major concern for all.  That was a subject of concern for the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial killings, who had been following the issue for more than 10 years. Switzerland called on States to vote against the amendment.

The representative of Finland noted that the reference to sexual orientation was first introduced a few years ago and a vote had been often called for, but always remained in the text.  It was included in 1999 following the Special Rapporteur’s comments concerning execution and people at risk.  That risk still persisted.  The Special Rapporteur had continuously raised the risk in his report and in appeals to Member States.  No one was claiming that one category was more worthy of protection than another.  The purpose of including the reference was to alert States to arbitrary executions.  The term “discriminatory racism” would include sexual orientation, but not everybody would understand, so it needed to be spelled out in the resolution, just as the Committee spelled out killings that were racially motivated or killings of national or linguistic minorities.  The inclusion of sexual orientation in this list aimed to protect against execution on this basis – nothing more, nothing less.  The main sponsor could not accept the amendment and would be voting against it.  Finland asked others to do the same.

The representative of the United Kingdom said that the need for prompt investigation of all killings, including on the basis of sexual orientation, existed because of the continuing cause for concern.  The list in the resolution could not be considered exhaustive and reflected abhorrent killings that the Special Rapporteur continued to identify in his reports, whether they be racially motivated killings or of human rights defenders.  It was right that the resolution identify those at risk and call for appropriate action to be taken in that regard. Descriptive lists were getting longer and the instinct was to streamline them, but, sometimes, the attempt to streamline could suppress something that needed to be highlighted, and more was needed.  The United Kingdom believed the current instance was one of those cases.  To accept the amendment was to accept that these people did not need mention, and was an affront to human dignity.  Like the main sponsor, the United Kingdom could not accept that and would be voting against the amendment.

The representative of St. Lucia, first, recognized the importance of the resolution and underscored the country’s commitment to human life and the dignity of each person.  St. Lucia reaffirmed its commitment to the prompt investigation of killings of humans, so that all persons had equal protection under the law.  St. Lucia expressed its belief that specific groups should not be listed, as lists had the danger of leaving some groups out and the danger of misinterpretation. That led to legal manipulation, by following the letter of the law in an unintended way.  In the attempt to list individuals, undefined terminology was used.  To ensure that all individuals received equal protection, it was imperative that the terms used be clear.  The term proposed by the African Group was comprehensive and, for that reason, St. Lucia would vote in support of the African Group’s amendment.

The representative of the United States strongly opposed the amendment, finding without merit the argument that deleting the reference somehow reinterpreted the right to life, or that bringing attention to abhorrent practices somehow made that less inclusive.  The United States urged all States to vote against the amendment.

The Committee then approved the amendment to operative paragraph 6 by a recorded vote of 79 in favour to 70 and 17 abstaining.

Providing a statement in explanation of the vote after the vote, Brazil said that, by adopting the amendment that deleted the reference to extrajudicial executions committed based on sexual orientation, the organization would not be sending a positive message.  For that reason, the country had not supported the amendment.  It also wished to note that possible improvements of the text could come in the form of incorporating references to other forms of discrimination that motivated killings, such as racial discrimination and xenophobia.  There was a need to promote dialogue and understanding in order to bridge differences.

The representative of South Africa said that, with regard to the amendment proposed by the African Group to provide comprehensive non-discrimination, South Africa voted based on its belief in the principle of non-discrimination on any grounds, including sexual orientation.  South Africa was conscious of the fact that there was no international agreement regarding the definition of sexual orientation, and believed that there needed to be a formal process on the issue. South Africa believed that they should define sexual orientation and establish parameters under human rights law.  Until there was such a discussion, there would be division, which had characterized the issue over past years.

The representative of Cuba said that it maintained its traditional position against any form of discrimination and that Cuba had voted for the amendment proposed by the African Group, which was sufficiently general and comprehensive.  It related to all killings, including executions on the grounds of sexual orientation.

Then, making a general statement, Morocco said that it had the honour to inform that it would join the consensus on the resolution provided with the amendment adopted.

The Committee then took action on the draft resolution entitled Extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions (document A/C.3/65/L.29/Rev.1), as a whole as amended.

The representative of Finland said there was widespread agreement that this was an important issue.  The draft resolution captured what delegations wanted to put into it.  Her delegation would vote in favour.

The representative of Benin on behalf African Group said the Group could support the text as amended.

Speaking in explanation of vote before the vote, the representative of Sudan said his delegation had voted in favour of rejecting the attempt to inject the idea of sexual orientation into the draft resolution.  It rejected repeated attempts by some delegations to introduce some ideas that had not been internationally accepted.  However, Sudan would abstain from voting on the draft resolution as a whole, despite its firm belief in the importance of the issue that it addressed.  It believed that the responsibility for combating racism fell within the responsibility of States within the framework of their international commitments.  Regarding operative paragraph 10, which referred to the International Criminal Court, there was no obligation by States that had not joined that Court to implement its decisions.  The role of the Court had been extremely exaggerated; in the 10 years since its foundation it had not even finished its first trial.  Much ambiguity surrounded its work, including its relationship with the Security Council.  The Court had also proven that it sought to politicize justice.  Operative paragraph 10 was not welcomed by Sudan, which rejected it.

The representative of Morocco asked the Chair who had requested a recorded vote.  The Secretary of the Committee, OTTO GUSTAFIK, explained that under Rule 130 of the Rules of Procedure of the General Assembly, when one or more amendments to a draft resolution were adopted, then the amended text shall be voted upon.

The Committee then approved the draft on extrajudicial executions (document A/C.3/65/L.29/Rev.1), as revised, by a vote of 165 in favour and 0 against, with 10 abstentions.

In an explanation of vote after the vote, the representative of France welcomed the approval of the draft.  Several categories of persons particularly vulnerable to extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions had been covered in operative paragraph 6(b).  The reference to sexual orientation had been made since 1999 by the Special Rapporteur, who had repeatedly and explicitly underlined that homosexuals had been victims of such crimes.  The General Assembly had recognized as much in 2008 and it was regrettable that such an explicit mention would not be made this year, even as many people were still victims of murder and violence due to their sexual orientation.

The representative of Iran said his country condemned extrajudicial, summary and arbitrary executions.  His delegation had joined the Organization of the Islamic Conference position on the amendment, but it had reservations regarding operative paragraph 5, which refers to the death penalty. 

The representative of the United States agreed that it was the obligation of all States to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms.  Countries such as hers which applied capital punishment should abide by their international obligations and use the death penalty only in cases of the most serious crimes.  The United States agreed with efforts to retain the language condemning executions of members of the “LGBT” community and it was dismayed that the reference could not survive an unfriendly amendment.  Additional concerns meant that the United States had been unable to vote for the draft as a whole. 

The representative of Jamaica, which voted in favour of the draft, was disappointed that operative paragraph 5 had not been further amended.  The way in which the text had been drafted implied that the use of the death penalty automatically amounted to extrajudicial execution.  The suggestion was that they were one and the same.  Jamaica did not share that interpretation.  Regarding operative paragraph 6(b), a more holistic approach was required.  It was cumbersome and unwieldy; several categories of vulnerable persons could have been included.  It was hoped that, in future, the co-sponsors would consider a more general reference to all vulnerable groups, without discrimination.

The representative of Norway regretted that the amendment deleting the reference to sexual orientation had been adopted.  The vulnerability of persons in that group had been note by the Special Rapporteur.

Making a general statement, the representative of the United Kingdom recalled the application of international humanitarian law in situations of armed conflict.

The Committee then took action on a draft resolution on the Elimination of discrimination against persons affected by leprosy and their family members (document A/C.3/65/L.37).

The text would have the General Assembly take note of the work of Human Rights Council Advisory Committee on the elimination of discrimination against persons affected by leprosy and their family members.  Also taking note with appreciation of the Revised principles and guidelines for the elimination of discrimination against persons affected by leprosy and their family members (document A/HRC/AC/5/2), it would encourage Governments, the United Nations system, other intergovernmental organizations and national human rights institutions to give due consideration to the Principles and Guidelines in the formulation and implementation of their policies and measures concerning persons affected by leprosy and their family members.  It would encourage all relevant actors - including hospitals, schools, universities, religious groups and organizations, business enterprises, newspapers, broadcasting networks and other non-governmental organizations - to give due consideration to the Principles and Guidelines, in the course of their activities.

The representative of Japan, the main sponsor, by way of an oral revision, made a “technical correction” to the draft.

The Committee then approved the draft without a vote, after which the representative of Japan expressed sincere appreciation to all delegations that had supported it.

The Committee then took action on a draft resolution on Globalization and its impact on the full enjoyment of all human rights (document A/C.3/65/L.38).

The draft would have the Assembly emphasize the need to fully implement the global partnership for development, enhance the momentum generated by the 2005 World Summit and reaffirm the commitment to promote fair globalization and the development of the productive sectors in developing countries to enable them to participate more effectively in, and benefit from, the process of globalization.  It would express concern at the negative impact of international financial turbulence, as well as rising global food, energy and climate challenges, on social and economic development and on the full enjoyment of all human rights, and at the inadequacy of measures to narrow the widening gap between the developed and the developing countries, which has contributed to deepen poverty.  It would call upon Member States, relevant agencies of the United Nations system, intergovernmental organizations and civil society to promote equitable and environmentally sustainable economic growth for managing globalization, so that poverty is systematically reduced and the international development targets are achieved.

The representative of Egypt, the main sponsor, said that the fact that 86 States had co-sponsored the resolution gave wider recognition to the belief that the benefits of globalization were not limited to one region or another.  They were attempting, through international cooperation, to maximize opportunities and overcome challenges.  However, the challenges of globalization were not to the favour of developing countries.  The resolution emphasized the need to address crucial challenges with a view towards minimizing the impact, thus enabling States to mobilize resources towards the protection of all human rights.  It highlighted even and fair distribution by all relevant actors and the importance of respecting the differences of members of the international community to enrich their common human heritage.  That endeavour was exactly what the international community emphasized through the outcome of the documents.  Unfortunately, certain States categorically refused to engage in constructive dialogue, despite attempts to engage through informal meetings over past two months.  The co-sponsors regretted such an approach regarding issues affecting the whole world, but looked forward to more engagement by partners.  It was hoped that the resolution could be adopted by consensus.

A recorded vote was requested by the United States.

In a statement in explanation of the vote before the vote, the representative of Brazil said that, in recognition of the positive developments of the proposal, Brazil would support it.  The country valued the importance attributed by the resolution towards international cooperation in the field of human rights.  It valued the recognition that globalization affected countries differently, and that globalization offered both risks and rewards.  Brazil welcomed the focus of the text – which was in line with the resolution adopted by the Human Rights Council – that, without boosting international partnership, they would not be able to ensure enjoyment of the benefits and, thus, social rights for all.  Brazil called on States to alleviate any negative impacts of the global financial crisis, in order to realize the effective enjoyment of all human rights. The country reiterated its conviction that, while national and regional particularities must be kept in mind, it was the duty of States, regardless of their economic, political and cultural systems, to protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms.

The representative of Belgium, on behalf of the European Union, said that the European Union could not support the draft resolution.  The European Union regretted that the text remained the same as last year, so it could not change its position.  Dealing with globalization and its effects was high on the European Union’s agenda.  Globalization was a multidimensional phenomenon, and its challenges were of a global nature.  Globalization could tackle more acute problems, like poverty.  The European Union acknowledged that benefits were not evenly shared, but, at same time, globalization could produce growth and prosperity and wield positive influence on human rights.  Globalization could have implications concerning human rights, but the draft resolution inaccurately stated that it affected all rights - a generalization to which the European Union could not subscribe.  The European Union was not convinced that globalization affected all human rights.  This relationship had to be assessed on a case-by-case basis. Thus, the European Union would vote against the resolution, and respectfully asked others to do the same.

The Committee proceeded to a recorded vote.  The electronic voting machine registered 122 as “yes,” 53 as “no” and 1 as abstaining; however, it was noted that, because of technical errors, the vote of Benin had not been recorded by the machine and would be recorded as a “yes” vote.  The resolution was adopted.

Giving a general statement after the vote, the representative of Chile said the delegation endorsed the resolution, given the inclusion of elements important for the country.  Globalization held challenges, but also opportunities.  Chile believed there was no reason for human rights and individual freedoms to be affected, but recognized that, amongst the challenges, were those particularly pertaining to economic and social rights.  This was one of the issues that the country believed needed to be faced.

Statement by the Chair

The Chair, Mr. TOMMO MONTHE ( Cameroon), said action remained to be taken on 29 draft resolutions.  The Bureau would be meeting in the afternoon to prepare a list of drafts that would be acted upon on Thursday and Friday, 18 and 19 November.  After this week, three more plenary meetings were scheduled.  It was his intention to conclude the work of the Committee on Tuesday, 23 November as scheduled.

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