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Thanks to Amdadul Huq for sourcing this information.
Dead for being late.
She was said to have arrived ten minutes late. She was severely rebuked. Later her dead body was found. Her body having fallen from the rooftop of the Vertex Garments where she worked. The minimum wage for a garment worker remains around US $ 24 per month.
The grief of two horrendous disasters within the space of three days and the death of so many people shakes us to the core. We rightly register our protest when a student or some well known personality dies. Let us hope our protest is not muted when the dead belong to the poorest in our society.
Ministry of Science and Information and Communication Technology,
PS Ramna, Dhaka.
Re Notice Demanding Justice
We write on behalf of our clients, 1) Mr. Arafat Hosen Khan, Barrister, of 229/1 West Dhanmondi, Road No. 19, Dhaka, 2) Mr. Kazi Ataul-Al-Osman, LLM, C.D.A. Agrabad R/A, Road-14, House-312, P.S.-Double Mooring, Chittagong, 3) Ms. Rokeya Chowdhury, LLM Student, of Bonosree- 7, Amberkhana, Sylhet-3100 to address you as under:
Our clients are citizens of Bangladesh, and young lawyers and law students, and regular users of the social networking site, Facebook, along with almost 9 lakh other Bangladeshis. They have been shocked to be denied all access to Facebook with effect from 30.05.2010 as a result of the action of the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) They have learnt that BTRC has done so on the purported ground that the site contained content which was defamatory of ‘national and spiritual leaders’ and also hurtful to religious sentiment. Further press reports indicated that BTRC had admitted in a letter to Facebook Inc. that it had “… already initiated a process to block the entire site [facebook.com], since blocking of the partial links for the groups have not been a success here in Bangladesh”.
Our clients believe that Facebook facilitates the sharing of knowledge, information and that Facebook users in Bangladesh, especially the young generation, through formation of groups, pages and event organization and wide circulation have built a strong network in engaging with national and international issues of public concern.
It is submitted that BTRC’s said action of blocking the website is wholly without lawful authority inasmuch as it arbitrary, capricious and without any objective basis. It is further submitted that sections 46, 56, and 57 of the Information and Communications Technology Act, 2006 (Act 39 of 2006) is illegal, arbitrary, and violative of Articles 38, 39, and 43 of the Constitution.
It is submitted that the said action of blocking access to Facebook is a violation of the fundamental rights to freedom of expression of our clients, and of all citizens, as guaranteed under Article 39 of the Constitution, which includes the right to receive and impart information, without any arbitrary interference, as well as the right to be treated in accordance with law, and the right to protection of correspondence as guaranteed under Articles 31, and 42 respectively.
In these circumstances, we are instructed to call upon you, as we hereby do, to immediately take steps to provide unrestricted access to the website Facebook as contained in the url http://www.facebook.com within 24 hours from the receipt of this notice, and to report compliance to the undersigned, failing which we have instructions to move an application to secure the fundamental rights of our clients under Article 102 of the Constitution, for the costs and consequences of which you shall be liable.
Supreme Court of Bangladesh
Israeli troops kill flotilla activists
May 31st, 2010 Posted in Global Issues, Imperialism, People, World, genocide, governance, human rights, politics
At least 16 dead as Israeli troops storm Gaza aid flotilla
Israeli commandoes have stormed a flotilla of ships carrying activists and aid supplies to the blockaded Palestinian enclave of Gaza, killing as many as as 16 of those on board.
By Richard Spencer, Middle East Correspondent and Matthew Kalman in Jerusalem
Published: 7:21AM BST 31 May 2010
Fighting broke out between the activists and the masked Israeli troops, who rappelled on to deck from helicopters before dawn.
A spokesman for the flotilla, Greta Berlin, said she had been told that ten people had been killed and dozens wounded, accusing Israeli troops of indiscriminately shooting at “unarmed civilians”. But an Israeli radio station said that between 14 and 16 were dead in a continuing operation.
“How could the Israeli military attack civilians like this?” Ms Berlin said. “Do they think that because they can attack Palestinians indiscriminately they can attack anyone?
“We have two other boats. This is not going to stop us.”
The Israeli government’s handling of the confrontation was under intense international pressure even as it continued. The Israeli ambassador to Turkey, the base of one of the human rights organisation which organised the flotilla, was summoned by the foreign ministry in Ankara, as the Israeli consulate in Istanbul came under attack.
One Israeli minister issued immediate words of regret. “The images are certainly not pleasant. I can only voice regret at all the fatalities,” Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, the trade and industry minister, told army radio.
But he added that the commandoes had been attacked with batons and activists had sought to take their weapons off them.
Israeli military sources said four of its men had been injured, one stabbed, and that they had been shot at.
“The flotilla’s participants were not innocent and used violence against the soldiers. They were waiting for the forces’ arrival,” they were quoted by a news website as saying.
The flotilla had set sail on Sunday from northern, or Turkish, Cyprus.
Six boats were led by the Mavi Marmara, which carried 600 activists from around the world, including Mairead Corrigan Maguire, the Northern Ireland peace protester who won a Nobel Prize in 1976.
It came under almost immediate monitoring from Israeli drones and the navy, with two vessels flanking it in international waters. The flotilla, which had been warned that it would not be allowed to reach Gaza, attempted to slow and change course, hoping to prevent a confrontation until daylight, when the Israeli military action could be better filmed.
But in the early hours of this morning local time commandoes boarded from helicopters.
The activists were not carrying guns, but television footage shown by al-Jazeera and Turkish television channels show hand-to-hand fighting, with activists wearing life-jackets striking commandoes with sticks.
The Israeli army said its troops were assaulted with axes and knives.
The television footage did not show firing but shots could be heard in the background. One man was shown lying unconscious on the deck, while another man was helped away.
A woman wearing hijab, the Muslim headscarf, was seen carrying a stretcher covered in blood.
The al-Jazeera broadcast stopped with a voice shouting in Hebrew: “Everyone shut up”.
Israel imposed its blockade on Gaza after the strip was taken over by the militant group Hamas in 2007. It has allowed some food and medical supplies through, but has prevented large-scale rebuilding following the bombardment and invasion of 2008-9.
The flotilla is the latest in a series of attempts by activists to break through the blockade. The boats were carrying food and building supplies.
Activists said at least two of the other boats, one Greek and one Turkish, had been boarded from Israeli naval vessels. Activists said two of the other boats in the flotilla were American-flagged.
The confrontation took place in international waters 80 miles off the Gaza coast.
It was attacked by the head of the Hamas government in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh.
“We call on the Secretary-General of the U.N., Ban Ki-moon, to shoulder his responsibilities to protect the safety of the solidarity groups who were on board these ships and to secure their way to Gaza,” he said.
Turkish television meanwhile showed hundreds of protesters trying to storm the Israeli consulate in Istanbul. The incident will be particularly damaging for Israel’s relations with what had been seen as its closest ally in the Muslim world.
“By targeting civilians, Israel has once again shown its disregard for human life and peaceful initiatives,” a Turkish foreign ministry statement said. “We strongly condemn these inhumane practices of Israel.
“This deplorable incident, which took place in open seas and constitutes a fragrant breach of international law, may lead to irreparable consequences in our bilateral relations.”
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