Tag Archives: protesters

“Last Fight For Hong Kong”: Over 1 Million March In Protests Against China Extradition Bill

Over 1 million Hong-kongers (according to the organizers; 240K according to the police), or one in seven, flooded Hong Kong’s streets on Sunday to oppose a proposed extradition bill that would allow Beijing to take people from Hong Kong to stand trial in mainland China.

According to the SCMP, it was the most unified protest march in the city in more than a decade, with some calling it the ultimate showdown over the bill, which goes to a vote on June 12 and if passed would allow the transfer of fugitives to jurisdictions.

If turnout numbers are accurate, it would represent the biggest protest since 2003, when 500,000 people demonstrated against national security legislation that was later withdrawn by the government. The sea of marchers set off from Victoria Park just before 3pm and streets in nearby Causeway Bay were soon brought to a standstill as protesters clad in white chanted and sang songs as they walked in the oppressive heat, according to the SCMP.

Tensions escalated in recent weeks as Hongkongers from all walks of life have spoken out against the proposal. Petitions against the bill have circulated, thousands of lawyers staged a silent march and several chambers of commerce have voiced concerns. The bill’s proponents, mostly the city’s administration, see it as vital tool to fight transnational crime and maintain the rule of law.

“This is the last fight for Hong Kong,” the WSJ quoted Martin Lee, a veteran opposition leader who founded the city’s Democratic Party. “The proposal is the most dangerous threat to our freedoms and way of life since the handover” of sovereignty, he said.

The massive turnout, with crowds filling public parks and roads up to six lanes wide for more than a mile and a half, heaps pressure on the city’s leaders and their political masters in Beijing to shelve the law, although unlike 2003, China’s ruling Communist Party under President Xi Jinping has in recent years taken a much stronger line against dissent in the former British colony.
The Special Tactical Squad has been deployed because of a perceived increase in threat to public safety

Crowds were so massive that some train stations across the city were temporarily closed and protesters had to line up in sweltering heat to enter a local park, chanting slogans to oppose the law and cheering each other on taking to the streets to express their discontent.

The proposed law, which would allow suspects to be extradited to mainland China for trial, has sparked anger in an unusually wide swath of the population, from teachers to lawyers and business leaders. The uniting fear is that the law, if passed, would expose citizens to the mainland’s more opaque legal system, where detainees could be subject to torture and other abuses of human rights. It would also remind the local population that HK is merely a Chinese colony now, and its own unique laws could be subverted overnight.

It is the latter that is the biggest concern for foreign business groups and diplomats, who have warned the proposal poses a threat to the rule of law that has helped Hong Kong prosper for decades as an international financial center, and which was guaranteed by China when it resumed sovereignty over the city from Britain in 1997. As the WSJ notes, opposition has grown even after the city’s leader, Carrie Lam watered down the bill slightly by removing offense categories liable to extradition from 46 to 37.

Lam’s government has said fears about the law are unfounded and stressed that only those suspected of the most serious crimes would be subject to extradition. The government says there will be safeguards against abuse and that the law won’t damage the city’s business environment or relate to offenses of a political nature. China’s Foreign Ministry didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on the protests and their potential impact on the proposed extradition law. Phone and fax lines to China’s Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office, which oversees Beijing’s policies to those territories, rang unanswered Sunday.

Anger over the extradition helped revive an opposition movement that dwindled after street protests in 2014 paralyzed parts of the city for 79 days, but ended without achieving their goal of obtaining more democracy. Meanwhile, Beijing’s influence over the city has grown since, while room for dissent has shrunk as the government has jailed protesters, declaring a pro-independence political party illegal and expelling a foreign journalist.

While the protests were mostly peaceful, there were occasional reports of scuffles between protesters and police, seven arrests and a fire in Central – but no major violence. Police gave the protesters a midnight deadline to disperse from government headquarters.

“I needed to let my voice be heard,” said Kitty Wong, a 38-year-old teacher who joined a protest for the first time. Gesturing to her two children, ages 8 and 9, she said: “We need to defend our home for the next generation.”

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Why Are Random Protests In Iran Suddenly Turning Deadly?

I get worried whenever I hear that something nasty is brewing inside Iran – it’s now common knowledge that America and Israel maintain spy/agitation networks both inside and outside the country.

And isn’t it quite coincidental that we’re starting to hear of local uprisings just days after Israel was essentially humiliated by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard?

Fox News:

Deadly protests in the southern Iranian city of Kazerun continued for a second day following the deaths of two protesters Wednesday. Protesters aimed their wrath at the Iranian regime following a decision to split the city of nearly 150,000 into two townships.

So we’re supposed to believe that the Persian version of gerrymandering has resulted in calls for the overthrow of the Iranian government?

Tell me another one, Schlomo.

“After anti-riot forces were dispatched to the city from Shiraz, the people charged at them and hand-to-hand clashes ensued,” a press release from the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) said. NCRI is a coalition of influential Iranian opposition groups.

The protests have left at least two people dead and six others injured.

If I were the Ayatollah, I would order the liquidation of this NCRI terrorist group by any means necessary – do it quietly, do it openly, or mix the two if it makes everyone feel better.

Because by not taking drastic action, you for all intents and purposes allow an organization likely swimming in American/Israeli money to operate and subvert until at last they get lucky and start a Ukraine 2013-2014.

They may fail a thousand times, but all it’ll take is one success for things to snowball.

The NCRI press release said that protesters had set fire to a trailer belonging to regime security forces and that four police vehicles had also been set ablaze. It said that parts of the city looked “war-torn.” It said smoke had filled the air close to the main square following the burning of tires by protesters. It also noted the Internet and mobile phones have been cut off.

Very good with the social media shutdown – you can’t risk anything when you’ve got to have a hundred percent success rate.

Heshmat Alavi an Iranian political and rights activist who has been following the protests since they started last December, told Fox News that “the scene we are witnessing in Kazerun is merely one of the many flashpoints in Iran, a powder keg state considered ready to explode at any moment.”

Alavi said more protests have been occurring across the country.

“Reports from a variety of sources are indicating anti-regime rallies and protests throughout the country, staged by people from all walks of life,” he said. “This includes teachers, college students, store-owners and bazaar merchants, credit firm clients seeking their stolen savings.”

Marching around carrying placards and signs is the mark of the middle class no matter where you’re at, but this is something that stinks like rotting gefilte fish and/or processed burgers.

Maybe I’m just being paranoid and have gotten blind to the fact that a good chunk of Iran’s population is not exactly Ubermensch status, or maybe I’m just fully aware of what my home country is capable of if given the opportunity.

Be careful, Iran, and don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty should the need arise.

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Russia: Navalny promised protesters 10k Euro in Soros style protest op

Oppositioner Mr. Navalny, having been detained by Moscow police since March 26th, was released today to a crowd of displeased teenagers.
The young people stood outside the facility and demanded their “hard earned” 10,000 Euros, for the participation in the unsanctioned Moscow opposition protests. Their signs read “When will we receive our 10k ?”; “You promised, you lied!” Mr. Navalny stands against dishonesty and state corruption.
Earlier it became known that Mr. Navalny had promised each teenager, who could get detained by the police as part of the opposition protest, 10,000 euros. Journalists have come up with the amount of 433.5 million rubles ($7.6m USD) for Navalny to be able to satisfy his claims.
Image result for soros protest money

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Protesters Plot “Border Wall” Rally For Tomorrow…At Zuckerberg’s Sprawling $100mm Hawaiian Estate

Back in 2014 Mark Zuckerberg paid $100 million to purchase 700 acres of beachfront property on the North Shore of Kauai.  The estate includes 1,000’s of feet of pristine shoreline providing the perfect “safe space” for the 30-year-old Silicon Valley Billionaire and his family.

Zuckerberg

Unfortunately, there was just one little problem with the purchase…technically the sellers didn’t own the title to all of that land due to the so-called Kuleana Act, a Hawaiian law established in 1850 that for the first time gave natives the right to own the land that they lived on.

So now, according to the Honolulu Star Advertiser, the Facebook billionaire sued a few hundred Hawaiians who still have legal-ownership claims to parts of his vacation estate through their ancestors.  Per Yahoo Finance:

Three holding companies controlled by Zuckerberg filed eight lawsuits in local court on December 30 against families who collectively inherited 14 parcels of land through the Kuleana Act, a Hawaiian law established in 1850 that for the first time gave natives the right to own the land that they lived on.

The 14 parcels total just 8.04 of the 700 acres Zuckerberg owns, but the law gives any direct family member of a parcel’s original owner the right to enter the otherwise private compound.

And while Zuckerberg’s lawyer attempted to downplay the lawsuits as a common practice in Hawaii, we suspect the idea of defending your private property rights against one of the top 10 richest people in the world is somewhat intimidating and slightly less than “normal.”

The quiet-title suits filed are designed to identify all property owners and give them the ability to sell their ownership stakes at auction, according to Keoni Shultz, an attorney representing Zuckerberg. Because the ownership stakes are passed down and divided among family descendants by the state, many people don’t realize they have a claim until action is taken against them in court.

“It is common in Hawaii to have small parcels of land within the boundaries of a larger tract, and for the title to these smaller parcels to have become broken or clouded over time,” Shultz told Business Insider in a statement. “In some cases, co-owners may not even be aware of their interests. Quiet title actions are the standard and prescribed process to identify all potential co-owners, determine ownership, and ensure that, if there are other co-owners, each receives appropriate value for their ownership share.”

Of course, the pompous dismissal of property rights isn’t the only thing riling up Hawaiian natives regarding Zuckerberg’s estate.  As The Garden Island pointed out, residents are also slightly less than ecstatic about a massive, 6 foot rock wall erected around the estate and blocking the “view that’s been available and appreciative by the community here for years.”

“The feeling of it is really oppressive. It’s immense,” Hall said. “It’s really sad that somebody would come in, and buy a huge piece of land and the first thing they do is cut off this view that’s been available and appreciative by the community here for years.”

“It’s hot behind that wall. Because it’s up on a berm, there’s not a breath of air on this side from the ocean,” Chantara said. “You take a solid wall that’s 10 or more feet above the road level; the breeze can’t go through.”

Another Kilauea resident, Donna Mcmillen, calls the wall a “monstrosity.”

“I’m super unhappy about that. I know that land belongs to Zuckerberg. Money is no option for him. I’m 5’8” and when I’m walking, I see nothing but wall,” Mcmillen said. “It just doesn’t fit in with the natural beauty that we have here. There are people on the island who money can pay for anything. These kind of things that they do take away what Kauai is all about.”

Zuckerberg

Over the past couple of weeks, intense public backlash over the lawsuit and “immense, oppressive” wall has caused Zuckerberg to backtrack on his plans. Earlier today he published a note to residents in The Garden Island announcing his intentions to drop his litigation saying that “upon reflection, it’s clear we made a mistake.”

We’ve heard from many in the community and learned more about the cultural and historical significance of this land. Over the past week, we’ve spoken with community leaders and shared that our intention is to achieve an outcome that preserves the environment, respects local traditions, and is fair to those with kuleana lands.

To find a better path forward, we are dropping our quiet title actions and will work together with the community on a new approach. We understand that for native Hawaiians, kuleana are sacred and the quiet title process can be difficult. We want to make this right, talk with the community, and find a better approach.

Upon reflection, I regret that I did not take the time to fully understand the quiet title process and its history before we moved ahead. Now that I understand the issues better, it’s clear we made a mistake.

The right path is to sit down and discuss how to best move forward. We will continue to speak with community leaders that represent different groups, including native Hawaiians and environmentalists, to find the best path.

Beyond this process, we are also looking for more ways to support the community as neighbors. We have contributed to community organizations and will continue to do so. We work with wildlife experts to preserve endangered species. We hope to do much more in the future.

We love Kaua`i and we want to be good members of the community for the long term. Thank you for welcoming our family into your community.

But, a local farmer, Joe Hart says that Zuckerberg’s retreat isn’t sufficient and, as of now, vows that the mass protest planned for tomorrow will move forward as “people are furious down here with him.”  Per McClatchey:

“People are furious down here with him,” Hart, a local farmer told Business Insider. “We just want to bring this issue to light. He’s made his money stealing everyone’s information, which we’ve let him do, but to come down here and start suing everyone, that’s not going to fly down here.”

Alas, in the end we’re sure Zuckerberg will have his way.  After all, what fun is billions of dollars if you can’t buy expansive swaths of entire states and trample on the private property rights of some little people?

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-01-27/zuckerberg-retreats-protesters-set-rally-border-wall-surrounding-his-hawaiian-estate

 

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