End arbitrary house arrests of Mousavi, Karroubi, and Rahnavard; free all prisoners of conscience

first_img Receive email alerts February 13, 2013 – Updated on January 20, 2016 End arbitrary house arrests of Mousavi, Karroubi, and Rahnavard; free all prisoners of conscience IranMiddle East – North Africa March 18, 2021 Find out more to go further News Beirut, London, Paris, February 13, 2013) – The Iranian authorities should immediately release from arbitrary house arrest two former presidential candidates Mehdi Karroubi and Mir Hossein Mousavi, his wife Zahra Rahnavard, author and political activist, and cease harassing or detaining without cause the couple’s two daughters and Mehdi Karroubi’s son, said the Nobel Peace laureate Shirin Ebadi and six leading human rights bodies. Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Reporters Without Borders, International Federation for Human Rights, League for the Defence of Human Rights in Iran, and International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran co-signed today’s appeal.On February 14, 2011, security and intelligence officials placed two former presidential candidates and Zahra Rahnavard, and Karroubi’s wife, Fatemeh Karroubi, under house arrest after they called for demonstrations to support the popular “Arab spring” uprisings across the region. Zahra and Narges Mousavi, daughters of Mir Hossein Mousavi and Zahra Rahnavard, and Mohammad Hossein Karroubi, son of Mehdi Karroubi were arrested on Monday 11 February 2013, two days before the second anniversary of arbitrary house arrests of their parents and Mehdi Karroubi. They were released later the same day. “For two years now Iranian officials have stripped these opposition figures of their most basic rights without any legal justification or any effective means of remedy,” Ebadi said. “They and their families should not have to endure even one more day under these wholly unjustifiable and abusive conditions.” Mir Hossein Mousavi, former Prime Minister and Mehdi Karroubi, former Speaker of Iran’s parliament, had been presidential candidates in the 2009 election in which the incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was declared the winner, in disputed circumstances. The announcement of his victory set off huge protests in Tehran and other cities, which the authorities violent suppressed, followed by arrests and show trials of journalists, government critics, and opposition activists linked to the campaigns of Mousavi and Karroubi. After the election, authorities tightly monitored and controlled the movements of Karroubi, Mousavi, and their wives, and suspended the presidential candidates’ newspapers Etemad-e Melli and Kalameyeh Sabz. In mid-February 2011, in the wake of their joint appeal for Iranians to demonstrate in support of pro-reform protests in Egypt and Tunisia, the men and their wives were placed under house arrest without court orders. Fatemeh Karroubi has since been released from house arrest. But the three detained opposition figures remain cut off from the outside world by the terms of their house arrest and are prevented from meeting and communicating regularly with other members of their families. Iran’s senior officials have given varied accounts of the action against the opposition figures. In November 2011, Mohammad Javad Larijani, head of the High Council for Human Rights, said that the detainees had engaged in “illegal activities” and incited violence. He also said that no one could be placed under house arrest in Iran “without trial and without a court order,” and that the public would soon be informed of the charges against the detainees. More than a year later, during which no charges were brought, Iran’s police chief, Esmaeel Ahmadi Moghaddam said on December 25, 2012, that the country’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, had approved the detention of the opposition figures in advance of their “house arrest”. Despite these pronouncements, Iranian officials, including Iran’s judiciary, have failed to provide any legal justification for the opposition figures’ continuing arbitrary detention under house arrest. The UN bodies have repeatedly called on the Iranian government to release the three opposition figures, declaring their detention arbitrary and unlawful. On 11 February, three UN Special Rapporteurs called for the immediate release of Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi and their family members and hundreds of other prisoners of conscience who remain in prison for peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of opinion and expression, or freedom of association and assembly. In August 2012, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, a body of five independent experts acting under the UN Human Rights Council, issued an opinion that the detentions are “arbitrary (and thus prohibited),” and recommended that the Iranian government release the detainees immediately and compensate them for their wrongful imprisonment. In September 2011, the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances initiated urgent investigations to determine the fate of the opposition figures, whose whereabouts were unknown at the time. Other UN officials and bodies, including the Secretary General, the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran, the Human Rights Council, and the General Assembly have also characterized the house arrests as arbitrary detention and called for the detainees’ immediate release. “If authorities had evidence showing that these opposition figures had committed a serious crime they should have charged and prosecuted them in a fair and transparent manner quite some time ago,” Ebadi said. “The fact that they have failed to do so for two years is a clear indication that they have no such evidence and that the continuing house arrest of these three critics is politically motivated.”As Iran prepares for new presidential elections on June 14, 2013, hundreds of opposition figures and critics of the government, as well as journalists, students, lawyers and other human rights defenders, remain in imprison. Many were arrested in the government’s post-2009 election crackdown and sentenced after televised show trials in which they were shown “confessing” to vaguely-worded national security ‘crimes,’ including supporting a “velvet revolution.” Since January 26, Iran’s security and intelligence forces have initiated a new wave of arrests against journalists accused of having “connections” to foreign media, apparently in an effort to silence dissent prior to the presidential election. “Thirty-four years after the establishment of an Islamic Republic founded upon the principles of freedom and justice, jails in Iran today are overflowing with hundreds of political prisoners, including prisoners of conscience, many of them ordinary Iranians whose only crime was to speak out,” said Ebadi. Ebadi and the six rights groups called on Iranian authorities to release immediately and unconditionally everyone detained for exercising their rights to freedom of expression, assembly, or association, and to cooperate with UN human rights bodies with a view to improving the current rights situation in Iran. Follow the news on Iran Iran: Press freedom violations recounted in real time January 2020 Call for Iranian New Year pardons for Iran’s 21 imprisoned journalists After Hengameh Shahidi’s pardon, RSF asks Supreme Leader to free all imprisoned journalistscenter_img RSF_en Organisation IranMiddle East – North Africa June 9, 2021 Find out more News News News Help by sharing this information February 25, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

Bouquet dianthus

first_imgThis fall has been amazing for those of us who have been growing the Bouquet series of dianthus. The flower power of this dianthus is really unmatched in the gardening world, and I admit that there was a little anxiety with the recent winter storm called “Benji.” ‘Bouquet Purple’ was a Minnesota Select Perennial Plant of the Year, so we know it has great cold hardiness.You see, our Bouquet dianthus was in full glorious bloom, which is one of the reasons we plant them in the fall as pansy pals. This bloom, however, was beyond our wildest expectations. As the snows came, the sleet fell and the temperatures plunged to the mid-20s (Fahrenheit), Bouquet dianthus didn’t even seem to lose a flower. It performed like the champion it is.Many of us find ourselves in the midst of our cool season garden landscape. If you procrastinated because of the busy fall season, you may be looking for some flowers that will carry you into summer. The Bouquet series offers color, fragrance and a bounty of cuts for the vase.You have to admit that there is something special about cutting from your own garden and sharing. It might be as simple as giving a bouquet of cut flowers from the garden to your neighbors or a Sunday school member that needs a little blessing. For cut flowers, it is recommended that stems be cut when three flowers are fully open.If you are looking for a pansy companion, cut flower or even a perennial performance, then the Bouquet dianthus series is my first choice of dianthus. For years it was a series of one, ‘Bouquet Purple.’ This was like an electrifying shot of energy to the pansy pal market. Forget the color purple, it is really a shocking, iridescent hot pink that will dazzle in any landscape.Next in the series came ‘Bouquet Rose Magic’ followed by ‘Bouquet Rose,’ all equally good performers. The blooms of ‘Bouquet Rose Magic’ open white and mature to light pink, then a deep rose color. Most flower stalks contain all of these colors at once.The Bouquet series of dianthus is vigorous, reaching 18 to 24 inches in height and born to bloom. Although I am touting them as a pansy partner, they will bloom for much of the summer in the hot, humid South before going into a rest, ready to start again in the fall.The Bouquet series grows best in well-worked beds that are loose, rich in organic matter and well-drained. When preparing a bed, incorporate two pounds of a slow-release fertilizer with minor nutrients per 100 square feet of bed space. They will need plenty of sun to really bloom to their potential.For the prettiest display, set the dianthus out in drifts of three to four plants per square foot. The colors allow them to combine nicely with blue and purple pansies, pink petunias and dusty miller, and by all means, consider interplanting with spring daffodils.  One last attribute that you will be delighted about is their ability to bring in butterflies. Most gardeners don’t think about the dianthus as being part of a pollinator project. Here in Savannah, Georgia, as our blooms opened up, we found gulf fritillaries, zebra heliconians, various swallowtails and sulphurs, all participating in what seem to be a feast of the nectar du jour.Follow me on Facebook under “Norman Winter ‘The Garden Guy.’” Learn more about the University of Georgia Coastal Georgia Botanical Gardens at www.coastalgeorgiabg.org/.last_img read more

Moscow orders partial lockdown as coronavirus cases in the capital pass 1,000

first_imgMuscovites will only be allowed to go out to buy food or medicines at their nearest shop, get urgent medical treatment, walk the dog, or take out the bins, he said.Those needing to go to work would also be allowed to leave their homes, he said, adding that authorities would introduce a system of access passes allowing people to move around the city in the coming days.”An extremely negative turn of events that we see in the largest cities in Europe and the United States causes great concern for the life and health of our citizens,” Sobyanin said.Skepticism about official data Authorities in the Russian capital announced a partial lockdown, ordering residents to stay at home from Monday in their toughest move yet to slow the spread of coronavirus after the number of official cases in Moscow passed the 1,000 mark.The order came days after Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin, a close ally of President Vladimir Putin, urged Muscovites to avoid public places, non-essential travel and walks – a recommendation many ignored amid a spell of unusually warm weather over the weekend.”It is obvious that not everyone heard us,” Sobyanin wrote on his website as he announced the tighter quarantine measures, warning the authorities would steadily tighten control over compliance with the new rules. Topics :center_img Russia has so far got off more lightly than many European countries with nine deaths and 1,534 cases, more than 1,000 of which are in Moscow. Russia recorded 270 new coronavirus infections in the past day.But some doctors have voiced skepticism about the accuracy of the figures given what they say has been the patchy nature and quality of testing, allegations that the authorities deny.According to a survey by the Levada Center, only 16% of Russians fully trust official information about the coronavirus, while 24% said they did not trust it at all.Russia has halted international flights, closed its borders, announced a non-working week from this weekend, and shuttered shops and entertainment venues in Moscow and some other regions.The head of Russia’s Orthodox Church on Sunday exhorted believers to pray at home, urging people to adhere strictly to authorities’ instructions “before someone dies in our families”.”Refrain from visiting churches,” Patriarch Kirill said, even though Orthodox services went ahead, including one led by him. Mosques in Muslim majority Chechnya cancelled Friday prayers, Russian news agencies reported.About 60% of Russia’s 144 million people consider themselves Orthodox Christians. But fewer than usual went to church on Sunday and some were wearing masks, according to media reports. last_img read more

Spanish third-quarter pension fund returns continue upswing

first_imgSpain’s occupational pension funds continued their upswing in performance during the third quarter to post a 3.48% return over the 12 months to 30 September, according to the country’s Investment and Pension Fund Association (INVERCO).This brings the average annualised returns for Spanish occupational funds to 4.52% for the three years to 30 September and 5.99% for the five years to that date.INVERCO said: “The markets contributed in a very positive way to value generation for pension plan members, especially in July, when international exchanges achieved very positive returns.“The outstanding performance came from those plans with a greater exposure to long-term fixed income.”  The 12-month performance to the end of June had been -0.49%, an improvement on the -3.33% for the 12 months to the end of March, largely caused by market instability in the first few months of the year.According to David Cienfuegos, head of investment for Spain at Willis Towers Watson, the 12 months to March 2016 was probably the worst year-to-year period since 2011, so subsequent year-to-year results would benefit simply by excluding the market peak in March 2015.Meanwhile, equity markets have rebounded from their March 2016 lows.“In addition,” Cienfuegos said, “we’ve seen euro bond prices continue to rise, as yields collapsed to their lowest levels by the end of the third quarter of 2016. However, since then, yields have gone up, and that will probably hurt performance for corporate pension funds overexposed to traditional fixed income.”He said some of Spain’s largest occupational pension funds had dramatically reduced their overall exposure to traditional fixed income, while incorporating US credit, high yield, securitised credit and loans to fight the current low-yield market environment.“Alternative credit has been a clear trend in the market for the past few quarters, and we expect that to continue into 2017,” he said.“Furthermore, absolute return-type strategies are clearly an area corporate pension funds in Spain are exploring to potentially protect their portfolio against a challenging market environment over the next few years.”As of the end of September, total assets under management for the occupational pensions sector stood at €35.3bn, an increase of 0.9% over the past 12 months.Total pension assets, including those in individual plans, have risen to €104.6bn, a 3% increase over the year.For pension funds as a whole, the biggest single component of portfolios – 30.8% – is still invested in Spanish government bonds, though there has been a slight shift in the past quarter towards Spanish corporate bonds, which now form 18.3% of portfolios.Fixed income investments overall, including non-domestic holdings, make up 57.6% of portfolios.But equity allocations have slowly increased, to 23.7% of portfolios.Meanwhile, Mercer’s Pension Investment Performance Service (PIPS) shows that non-euro-zone equities was the best-performing asset class over the 12 months to end-September, with a 13% return, compared with 0.7% for euro-zone equities and 4.9% for fixed income.The overall return was 4.8% for the 12 months to the end of September, compared with 0.9% for the 12 months to the end of June.Xavier Bellavista, principal at Mercer, said non-euro-zone equities had done well over the past year because the US and, in particular, emerging markets had done better than other regions, while Europe was the worst-performing equities market.“Fixed income holdings have done well because they have a bias towards euro-zone government, and Spanish, fixed income,” he said. “These assets have benefited from falling interest rates.”Bellavista said Spanish pension funds were continuing to diversify their asset allocation and, in particular, their fixed income assets to tackle the extremely low interest-rate environment.“We have been recommending very prudent decisions to our clients,” he said.“We think equities will generate reasonable returns, with the upside risk to earnings growth balanced by the upside risk to interest rates. For government bonds, there is further upside risk to yields, which are still exceptionally low in historic terms.”last_img read more

William D. “Bill” Cochran, 92, Brookville

first_imgWilliam Dale “Bill” Cochran, age 92, lifelong resident of Fayette & Franklin Counties, died Saturday, June 16, 2018 from complications of dementia at Robin Run Health in Indianapolis where he had been a resident and under the devoted care of his daughter Donita K. Keidel.Born May 13, 1926 in Connersville, Indiana to Fred B. & Jessie (Ashba) Cochran, he was preceded in death by his siblings, Virginia, Erma, Joanne and Robert.He married Geraldine Mae Agnew in 1952, and helped raise & provide for children, Terry, Dennis, Donita, Fred and Robin.He married again in 1976 to the former Nadine Canada, the mother of daughters Lois, Debbie, and Donna, and was blessed in this marriage until her death on November 7, 2010.A veteran of the Korean War, he enlisted in the US Army in 1950 and served as a truck driver in the 45TH Infantry Division where he was awarded the Bronze Star. He was a lifetime member of the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars, where he was past Commander.Raised & schooled in Connersville, Indiana he began his work as a paper boy in youth, and after opting out of school after 10TH grade, he worked in local factories and as a milk truck driver. After returning home from Korea he settled in the Casket industry first with Connersville Casket Company as a welder until its closing, then later at Brookville Franklin Casket Company, where he was supervisor and plant manager until his retirement. Throughout his life he enjoyed many hobbies and pastimes, including Indian & Harley Davidson Motorcycles, but his real passion was engineering and tinkering with mechanical innovations.Survivors include his daughter Donita (Jim) Keidel of Indianapolis, Indiana, three sons, Dennis (Connie) Cochran of Laurel, Indiana, Fred (David Scott) Cochran of Melbourne, Florida, and Terry (Pam) Cochran of Richmond, Indiana; step-children, Donna (Ted) Ertel, Debbie (John) McGuire, Lois (Glen) Hollowell, and Robin (Vickie) Beaty; grandchildren, Darrek (Amber) Cochran, Stephanie Lewis, Vince (Valerie) Cochran, Molly Cochran, Chris (Katrina) Keidel, Chris (Angel) Taylor, Ryan (Sabrina), Lisa (Will) Hudler, Kevin McGuire, Darren McGuire, Brent Ertel, Brandon Ertel, Katelyn Ertel, Aaron Beaty, Audra McGuire and several great-grandchildren.Family & friends may visit from 9:00 A.M. until 11:00 A.M. on Saturday, June 23, 2018 at Phillips & Meyers Funeral Home, 1025 Franklin Avenue, Brookville. Pastor Perry Booso of the Brookville Church of Christ will officiate the Funeral Services on Saturday, June 23, 2018, 11:00 A.M., at Phillips & Meyers Funeral Home. Burial with full military graveside honors by the Bernard Hurst Post #77 of the American Legion will follow in Dale Cemetery in Connersville, Indiana.Memorial contributions may be directed to the Bernard Hurst Post #77 of the American Legion Firing Squad. Phillips & Meyers Funeral Home is honored to serve the Cochran family, to sign the online guest book or send personal condolences please visit www.phillipsandmeyers.com .last_img read more

Leon Balogun joins Wigan on loan

first_imgRelatedPosts Leeds record first Premier League win in seven-goal thriller Leeds host first Premier League game after 16 years EPL: Salah nets hat-trick as Liverpool beat Leeds in seven-goal thriller Wigan Athletic completed the loan signing of defender Leon Balogun from Brighton & Hove Albion until the end of the 2019-20 season, subject to EFL, Premier League and FA approval. Balogun, 31, completed the move late on Deadline Day and is unavailable for Latics’ clash at Leeds United on Saturday. The Nigeria international signed for Brighton in 2018, having spent his career in Germany, featuring in the Bundesliga for Hannover 96, Werder Bremen, Fortuna Dusseldorf and Mainz 05. With over 200 career league appearances and 32 international caps to his name, Balogun brings useful experience to Paul Cook’s defence for the final 17 games of the season.Tags: Deadline dayFortuna DusseldorfLeeds UnitedLeon BalogunWiganWigan Athleticlast_img read more