Global Witness Indicts GV-Liberia of Illegal Practices

first_imgEnvironmental watchdog Global Witness has called on the Liberian Government to investigate ‘acts of violence’ against communities that palm oil giant Golden Veroleum Liberia (GVL) is allegedly committing and to enact laws to protect citizens and regulate all plantation companies operating in the country.A Global Witness press release said the Liberian Government must also enact a law recognizing rural community ownership of their lands and regulate the country’s agriculture sector to bring an end to the impunity enjoyed by plantation companies.It said there is a need for an urgent reform, claiming that Liberians are reported to have been beaten, threatened, and arrested for taking a stand against GVL as the company sweeps across the southeast of the country.Global Witness said between August and October 2014, when the Ebola outbreak was at its peak, GVL used the opportunity created by the crisis to sign Memorandas of Understanding covering 134 km2 of community land. Prior to the outbreak the company had signed MOUs covering 166 km2.“Between April and December 2014, GVL used bulldozers to expand its plantation over 54 km2.In the three years prior to this, GVL had only cleared a total of 58 km2.GVL has stated that its activities in 2014 were part of its long-term plan,” Global Witness said.It noted further that “It is unacceptable to view the well-being of tens of thousands of people as inferior to an investment contract.“Development is not development if it involves robbing the country’s poorest citizens of their land. If Liberians are to benefit from palm oil they must be free to choose for or against it, and have the information and support they need to negotiate on their own terms.”Global Witness said the Liberian government should stop GVL from expanding onto new land and set a precedent for the other foreign companies poised to cash in on Liberia’s vast natural wealth.“Liberia is rolling out the red carpet to a company that has swindled communities, forcibly grabbed land and chain-sawed its way through rainforests in Asia,” Global Witness claimed in its release.It noted GVL’s first foray into Africa, at the peak of the continent’s deadliest Ebola epidemic where it has manipulated villagers into signing away the lands they depend on.“This will affect at least five generations of families who will likely never see their land returned to them,” Global Witness said.It said GVL has bought the rights to convert 2,600 km2 of southeast Liberia into an oil palm estate – an area the size of London and Barcelona combined.“Its contract is valid for up to 98 years, affecting some 41,000 people. This is the first time its parent company GAR has expanded outside its home country Indonesia, where it has an appalling track record for human rights abuses, land grabbing, and environmental devastation,” Global Witness claimed.However, at a press conference yesterday at a local hotel in Monrovia, GVL Head of Corporate Communications, Virgil Magee, who said he had not read the Global Witness report, told journalists that the company is involved with 28 communities in the areas of its operations.Magee said to a reporter’s question that GVL’s contract in Liberia is for 65 years, with possible extension for an additional 35years.Though not directly answering to issues raised by Global Witness, Magee said close to 4,000 Liberians are presently employed with GVL with a target of 5,000.He said the recent destruction at its Butaw facilities following violent demonstrations by angry youths, is estimated at U$1m.He said that contrary to unverified reports, GVL has been involved with 80 companies during the Ebola epidemic, and provided awareness to residents in both Sinoe and Grand Kru counties, since awareness information from Monrovia did not reach them.He also said contrary to reports, the company’s expansion activities are not done in isolation but on the invitation and with the participation of the communities.He said GVL is in the process of establishing the first palm oil mill in Tarjuwon, Grand Kru County and another will be built in Sinoe County.Further in its press release “Global Witness claims it has found evidence that some GVL staffers are reportedly not employed by the company directly, but instead are being subcontracted. It is unclear if such subcontractors will get the same benefits as employees.“GVL has stated that it may employ some subcontractors but is not aware of any such arrangements,” the release said.GVL’s parent company, GAR, Global Witness shareholder listings, Standard Chartered, holds US$710 million in GAR stock, the release said.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Chelsea verdict due mid-December in FIFA transfer ban case

first_imgAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai Sotto LATEST STORIES The timeline of this transfer of minors’ case is similar to Barcelona’s appeal in 2014 when CAS upheld a transfer ban on Dec. 30, almost four weeks after a hearing.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham, left, celebrates with teammates after scoring his sides first goal during their English Premier League soccer match between Chelsea and Crystal Palace at Stamford Bridge stadium in London, Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)LAUSANNE, Switzerland—Chelsea can expect a verdict within three weeks in its appeal to overturn a FIFA transfer ban for breaking youth transfer rules.The Court of Arbitration for Sport said after a hearing Wednesday its ruling is expected in the first half of December.ADVERTISEMENT Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee Maguindanao massacre case: Mangudadatu upbeat on conviction of perpetratotrs PLAY LIST 01:04Maguindanao massacre case: Mangudadatu upbeat on conviction of perpetratotrs03:22The decision on the Maguindanao Massacre case01:32Atty Harry Roque comments on Maguindanao massacre verdict01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown01:54MMDA deploys rescue team to Batangas following Taal eruption MOST READ 2 village execs nabbed in Bohol buy-bust ‘People evacuated on their own’ 400 evacuees from Taal eruption take refuge in Mt. Banahaw Phivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study The month-long trading window for English clubs opens Jan. 1. Chelsea already served half its one-year ban on registering new players during the offseason.Chelsea is challenging verdicts by FIFA’s disciplinary and appeal committees that the club had 150 violations of rules protecting minors from trafficking. Those cases involved about 70 players.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4Chelsea also broke rules prohibiting third-party influence on players. FIFA imposed a fine of 600,000 Swiss francs ($608,000).The club has denied wrongdoing. DSWD Bicol donates P1.5M worth of food packs for Taal eruption evacuees Globe leads send-off ceremony for PH Volcanoes before the 2020 Olympic Qualifying Tournament No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

Transfer ALERT! Chelsea target offered new bumper contract to stay at Lazio

first_img1 Lazio are lining up a new bumper deal for Stefan De Vrij to ward off the interest of Chelsea.The Dutch centre-back is on Antonio Conte’s wish list and the Blues have been linked with a January move.However, Lazio are desperate to keep hold of the 24-year-old and dismissed all of Chelsea’s summer enquiries for him.But they are bracing themselves for further offers in the New Year and, according to Il Messaggero, are now ready to tie De Vrij down for even longer.The Holland international’s current deal runs out in 2018 and Lazio are ready to offer him lucrative, fresh terms until 2021.The contract will also contain a release-clause worth £30million, which Chelsea may decide to trigger once the window reopens. Stefan De Vrij is wanted by Antonio Conte this January last_img read more

Wenger again refuses to discuss future – but admits he is making transfer plans

first_img Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger Arsene Wenger has once again shrugged off questions about his future at Arsenal.The 67-year-old Frenchman, whose contract is up at the end of the season, guided the Gunners to the FA Cup final with Sunday’s Wembley win over Manchester City.That victory may have eased some of the pressure on Wenger from disgruntled fans, but the Emirates boss remained tight-lipped on whether he plans to stay when quizzed on Tuesday morning.Asked if there was any news, he simply replied “No, no”, and repeated the response when pressed on whether he had any idea when an announcement will be made.And as for whether any decision would be based around how Arsenal perform over the final few weeks of the season, the answer once again was “no”.Nevertheless, Wenger did reveal he is already working on the club’s transfer targets for next season – although he insisted there was no clue to be had from that.“I work until the last day of the season for the future,” he said.“Transfer targets are important for the future of the club. That (my future) is secondary, the future of the club is important.”The Gunners host Leicester on Wednesday evening knowing a victory would move them back up to sixth, three points behind Manchester United and four behind Manchester City, who play each other on Thursday.Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain could be involved against the Foxes despite leaving Wembley on crutches.The midfielder took a kick on his foot against City and will be assessed before Wenger names his squad.“It was precautionary,” he added. “It is not a bad injury and we will test him today. Nobody was really injured after the game.“Overall that win will give us a bit more confidence, I think it will convince everybody that with the right energy level, the right fighting spirit and the right togetherness we can beat everybody.“For morale, yes for sure, for confidence as well. Big games give you the confidence that you can win and that is the most important thing in our job.”Wenger admits Arsenal are likely to have to win all of their remaining games to stand a chance of breaking back into the top four.“It looks like we will, that has to be the target and to achieve that we have to win the next one,” he said.“We have to take the energy level we showed on Sunday into the Premier League.”MORE ARSENAL NEWS! Arsene Wenger says he wants Olivier Giroud to stay and denies Marseille approach 1last_img read more

Why we love the Championship, including play-offs, kits, and stadiums

first_img Bobby Zamora celebrates after his Championship play-off final heroics Getty Images FAREWELL Man United transfer news live: Haaland ‘wants a change’, two players off in January Getty Images Nottingham Forest’s City Ground stadium Where every Premier League club needs to strengthen in January The 2019/20 Football League season gets under way at the weekend and we’re over the moon.On the talkSPORT Network We’ll be bringing you live action, reaction, and all the latest news from the Championship and beyond. Getty Images 90’s⏪What do you make of our new home shirt, @HullCity fans? #hcafc | #TheTigers pic.twitter.com/IP3pKvDsxY— Hull City (@HullCity) June 14, 2019UnpredictabilityLast year we saw a Jack Grealish inspired Aston Villa come from the back of the pack to eventually winning the play-offs, while the season before Fulham did similar, coming from 17th place in mid-November to claim promotion at Wembley.Leeds were chasing automatic promotion from the off last season but they saw their bid derailed by defeats to Wigan, Ipswich, and Queens Park Rangers in 2018/19.Even the lowliest side can defeat the top dogs when they’re on form and you’re sure to get some thrilling matches too.In November last season, eventual champions Norwich City were 3-2 to Millwall one minute into added time at Carrow Road. Not only did they equalise, they scored a winning seven minutes after the scheduled final whistle. Liverpool news live: Klopp reveals when Minamino will play and issues injury update The biggest market value losers in 2019, including Bale and ex-Liverpool star deals New job Matic one of two players for sale with ‘two Premier League clubs’ interested LATEST FOOTBALL STORIES 6 BIG PRESENTS UP TOP Getty 6 TROPHY targets Historic clubsPreston North End are now in their fifth season in the Championship following a four-year stint down in League One.While the Lilywhites aren’t a huge club, they’re full of history thanks to being the winners of the first ever football league – and they won it as invincibles too, winning 18 and drawing four of their 22 games.Elsewhere, two-time European Cup winners Nottingham Forest and Derby County, who reached the semi-final of the same competition in 1973.Leeds, Stoke City and Middlesbrough are, among others, some of the most storied teams in England. Amazing old stadiumsThe Premier League may have Tottenham Hotspur’s shiny new £1billion world-class arena but sometimes you can’t beat the endearing charm of some of the Championship’s best grounds.Not only do you have Elland Road, one of the most famous stadiums in the land, but you also have the City Ground and the ever-imposing Loftus Road.Even with the loss of Villa Park, Bramall Lane and Carrow Road, the Championship still boasts some almighty fortresses and some of the newer ones, aren’t bad either. Former Crystal Palace and West Brom manager Pardew takes over at Dutch strugglers REVEALED Redknapp calls Son ‘petulant’, but Holloway says red card for Rudiger kick was ‘soft’ You can beat the English second tier for entertainment and it’s one of the most competitive divisions around the globe as sides battle for a place in the Premier League.It’s not hard to fall for the non-stop excitement as star players, exciting youngsters and brilliant coaches all combine in the quest for promotion.So why do we love it so much, we’ve taken a look at some of the reasons below. OFF 6 Leeds United players celebrate during their incredible 2018/19 campaign Getty Images 6 Leeds United celebrate after beating Arsenal 1-0 in the 1972 FA Cup final at Wembley, including Billy Bremner and Jack Charlton Liverpool update ‘Champions Wall’ after ending 2019 as European and world champions 6 latest Young British starsYou’d be forgiven for thinking the Football League is full of journeymen players in their mid-to-late 20s who weren’t quite cut out for the Premier League.This couldn’t be further from the truth as numerous talented young stars are making waves in the second tier.In 2018/19, the Championship Team of the Season had Max Aarons (19), Jamal Lewis (21), Reece James (19), Kalvin Phillips (23), Jarrod Bowen (22), and Che Adams (23).So, who will be the breakout wonderkid next season? We can’t wait to find out. Getty Images Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ 6 What every Premier League club’s fans dream of this Christmas Jack Grealish was rewarded for remaining with Aston Villa by promotion to the Premier League thanks to some stunning late season form Play-off dramaBobby Zamora’s 90th minute winner for Queens Park Rangers in 2014, Ricardo Vaz Te’s late strike for West Ham in 2012, and Dean Windass’ 2008 worldie are just some of the best moments in recent times.Even low-scoring encounters have been thrillers, while Blackpool and Cardiff traded five goals in the 2010 final.Whatever the weather, we all know in late May we will sitting down and watching one of the biggest one-off games in world football. Great kitsWe love a kit here at talkSPORT Towers and in the Championship we’re looking forward to seeing a number of new strips in action.Whether it is Huddersfield’s ‘no sponsor’ home shirt, Queens Park Rangers’ collared look, or Hull City’s tiger stripes, there are plenty of jerseys we’ll want to buy. LATEST Jarrod Bowen has attracted interest from Premier League clubs but looks set to remain in the Championshiplast_img read more

Winter Olympics: Scotland’s medal hopes in Pyeongchang

first_imgThe Winter Olympics 2018 takes place this month amid sub-zero Pyeongchang temperatures.A band of Scottish athletes will be in action, looking to warm the hearts of those back home by turning up the heat in South Korea.Windchill temperatures of around -30C ensure the winter games is certainly living up to it’s billing, Team GB hold high hopes, aiming to better the five medals of Sochi and make this their most successful ever games. Since then the 27-year-old has recovered impressively, bouncing back to become world champion in March of last year.Christie has carried that form into 2018 and arrives in Pyeongchang with gold medal aspirations.Regardless of her Socchi agony, Christie has vowed she won’t play safe in her quest for victory.Is it time for Christie to shine?Vicki Adams, Lauren Gray, Anna Sloan and Eve Muirhead are going for gold once more. SNS The sight of Eve Muirhead’s Scottish rink standing on the podium come the end of a tournament has become a common sight on the ice over the years.Bronze in Socchi four years ago was built upon by a third place finish at the 2017 World Championships and gold at the recent European Championships.As a result, they are billed as one of GB’s top medal hopes in South Korea.Skipper Muirhead, returning for her third games at just 27, leads a determined group. Socchi teammates Anna Sloan and Vicki Adams are also back for another crack at the Games, while Lauren Gray steps up to replace Claire Hamilton. Experienced two-time Olympian Kelly Schafer takes up the reserve position.The quintet have every reason to be confident given their form. They begin on Wednesday against the Russian rink, who will compete under the Olympic flag as “Olympic Athletes from Russia” after a doping scandal ruled out the majority of Russian athletes.Will they sweep away the competition en route to gold?Greg Muirhead (right) has been selected alongside his brother as part of the men’s rink. SNSGB curling is a family affair in South Korea, with Eve Muirhead’s brothers Greg and Thomas part of the men’s team making their Olympic debut.The siblings’ rink were chosen ahead of David Murdoch’s – who won silver in Socchi – after a strong start to the season on tour in Canada saw them go top of the ranking points table.Skippered by Kyle Smith, also from Perth, medal success would be a huge achievement in a highly competitive field. Smith’s brother Cammy is also in the team as lead, alongside Kyle Waddell.The team were prolific at youth level, accumulating World Junior Championship bronze in 2012, gold in 2013 and silver the following year. Can they replicate that form on the greatest stage of them all?Elise Christie and the curlers will be spared the worst of the winter chill as they compete indoors but there is no such luck for cross-country skier Andrew Musgrave.Musgrave, born in Poole but brought up on the Shetland Islands and in Huntly, Aberdeenshire, will brave the cold as he aims to become Britain’s first medallist in cross-country skiing.The 27-year-old finished 29th in the cross-country sprint four years ago but has been emboldened by a fourth place finish in the World Championships 50k freestyle and third over 15k, his favoured distance, in December’s World Cup.As such, he arrives at his third Games in arguably the best form of his career.Musgrave will be joined in competition by Andrew Young and Callum Smith, fellow alumni of Huntly’s Nordic Skiing Club. Faced with revered Norwegian and Swiss opposition, they face an uphill battle on the slopes.Will the underdog upset the odds? To do so, Scottish athletes will have to come to the fore. Elise Christie arrives as the GB games poster girl, while it’s a family affair in curling. Here we run the rule over Scotland’s great medal hopes:Elise Christie suffered disappointment four years ago in Sochi. REX/BPISpeed skater Elise Christie is out to right the wrongs of Socchi when she takes to the ice in South Korea.With the weight of expectation on her shoulders, the Livingston short-track competitor suffered humiliation four years ago when she was disqualified in all three of her races.last_img read more

Columbus Catholic girls basketball suffers first loss

first_imgDons host Granton on ThursdayBy Paul LeckerSports ReporterWISCONSIN RAPIDS — The Marshfield Columbus Catholic girls basketball team suffered its first loss of the season, falling 56-38 to Wisconsin Rapids Assumption in the championship game of the Cranberry Classic on Saturday afternoon at Assumption High School.Game statistics were not provided.The Dons are now 4-1 this season and will host Granton in a Cloverbelt Conference East Division game Thursday.(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)last_img read more

Will The Real HTML5 Please Stand Up?

first_imgRelated Posts My colleague Scott Fulton writes today on the Software Quality Connection website that the proliferation of browser versions and supposed HTML standards have created a confusing series of choices for browser baselines for corporate developers. Clearly, the baseline is no longer IE6, a browser version that Microsoft hasn’t supported for years (although our story here gives credence to its popularity and how you can keep it alive within your corporation using a variety of virtualization tricks). Fulton mentions how both Microsoft and Mozilla are announcing multiple new versions of their browsers, and how version numbers have become meaningless. HTML5 is not really the next update in the standards set from HTML4; indeed, there is no single set of standards around it. The original Web standards consortium, called the W3C, now has a separate and somewhat parallel effort called the Web Hypertext Application Technology Working Group (WHATWG), composed of representatives from Apple, Mozilla, Opera and lately Google. (You can see the technical differences between the two groups with respect to HTML5 here.)What all this means is that gone are the days when you can keep track. In the dark past, when it was Microsoft vs. Netscape, it was easy to keep a scorecard – and have just a couple of browser versions – on your desktop for testing purposes. Now, with five major vendors (Microsoft, Mozilla, Opera, Apple, and Google), the multiple simultaneous versions from each vendor and the different desktop and mobile versions, the number of tests combinations can seem nearly infinite.Fulton compiles a “master list” of HTML5 features, which I’ll summarize (it is worth reading his copious treatment):Document sectionsBetter video tagging and codecsWebSocket APIs for exchanging messages between Web servers and clientsWebForms for better text handling without the need to write Javascript code Canvas support for drawing pictures on the page and Web Storage for persistent cookieless storageThis is just his interpretation. The actual folks who work on the standards see things differently, and what this means is that there are a lot of new features that may or may not be a part of any browser. CanIuse.com, is a great reference and gives you an idea of the many dimensions of the problem by showing you which browsers offer support for particular technologies. And looking for a more basic HTML5 explanation, you might want to go to DiveIntoHTML5.Bruce Lawson, a Web evangelist for Opera Software says: “You wouldn’t believe how many e-mails I get saying, ‘Bruce, would you give me some feedback on my HTML5 page,’ and I look at it, and it’s no more HTML5 than my vacuum cleaner.” So welcome to the new HTML, whatever you want to call it. As websites update their content in real-time, so too do the engineers who write the code for the next collection of browsers and the n+1th collection they are also working on concurrently. Get used to the continuous upgrade. david strom 7 Types of Video that will Make a Massive Impac… Why You Love Online Quizzescenter_img Tags:#Analysis#hack How to Write a Welcome Email to New Employees? Growing Phone Scams: 5 Tips To Avoidlast_img read more

Android Market’s Major Makeover is Out Now

first_imgWhy IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology It’s also worth noting the addition of the mobile e-book store is arriving in this update, too. As with movie rentals, all book purchases will be linked to a user’s Android account, and made available across all their devices, including phones, tablets and computers. And as with app purchases, all content downloads and video rentals can be added to a user’s account without them having to manually sync their device with a computer over a USB cable.New User Interface Mimics Some iTunes FeaturesTo highlight the new features, the mobile Market has an updated user interface, which showcases the books and movie categories directly from the homescreen. Elsewhere, sections like “Editor’s Choice” and “Staff Choices” go even further to mimic the iTunes experience of a curated collection of applications and recommendations. But there is not actually curation in terms of the apps accepted into the marketplace – all apps are immediately published upon developer submission.The iTunes-like similarities don’t end there, however.  Apps are now also easier to purchase – just one tap on the button displaying the app’s price and a second tap to confirm the purchase.For those Android users out there who can’t stand the wait, and who know how to manage the installation of off-Market APK files, the Phandroid blog is hosting the link to the updated Market app. There are also instructions provided that will enable you to return to the old Market, if things go awry. Tags:#Google#mobile#news#NYT#web sarah perez Related Posts center_img What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement The new version of the Android Market promised by Google earlier this month has begun rolling out to Android 2.2+ devices in the wild. The first sightings of the updated mobile application were made by members of the XDA-Developers forum, who have already extracted the mobile application and made it available to others who just can’t wait for the download.In addition to a refreshed user interface, U.S. users will also be able to rent thousands of movies from their device and purchase e-books. These two moves in particular make Android a more competitive option to the Apple iPhone than it had been previously.Google announced the forthcoming update to the Android Market in mid-July, noting that movie prices will begin at $1.99. However, unlike on Apple’s iTunes, there is no option to purchase movies, only rent them. Until now, movie rentals were available from the Web version of the Android Market, following Google’s announcement of the new streaming service at its I/O Conference in May. Movies on Mobile!The addition of mobile movie rentals is probably the most notable change for the Android Market, as Android-based devices have been lacking in this department for many months. Third-party applications like mSpot helped to fill the void for some, but it was not until the launch of Hulu and Netflix on Android that users finally had access to vast media catalogs that their iPhone-toting counterparts had through both the iPhone versions of those apps, as well as iTunes.But even at launch, the Netflix and Hulu catalogs weren’t available to all Android device owners. Netflix, for example, is struggling to deal with the large and varied install base of Android hardware, and is painstakingly certifying devices one-by-one to meet the demands of studios who require that copyright protection technology is implemented on all streams. Hulu is in the exact same boat.For these reasons, it’s especially important that Google itself get involved in providing content options to a wider range of its Android users. Although the change won’t be available to those on older Android devices, Android 2.2 and up is supported. This addresses the majority of the current market, according to Google’s statistics. Only 21.1% of the Android install base is running Android 2.1 or lower.last_img read more