Democratic leaders give historic commitment based on Declaration on Information and Democracy

first_imgRecalling her country’s readiness to rally behind calls for international peace and security, human rights and sustainable development, Solberg said: “A global communication and information space built on the freedom of expression is essential (…) Without freedom of expression and a real communication and information space, rule of law is at risk. Carefully built institutions could be undermined.” News FranceTunisiaSenegalCosta RicaNorwayCanadaEurope – Central AsiaMiddle East – North Africa AfricaAmericas Events June 8, 2021 Find out more Organisation Commending RSF’s work in defence of journalists and press freedom, Senegal’s President Sall said: “In Africa, there is an ever-stronger determination to guarantee the protection of journalists and to create the conditions for this process to be carried out properly (…) I fully commit to supporting the Pledge for Information and Democracy.” News News News After commending the Information and Democracy Commission’s work, the heads of state and government announced that they had “decided to form an initiative for information and democracy based on the principles set out in this declaration” and that, through this initiative, they would renew their commitment towards the right to exercise freedom of opinion and expression, and would “define the objectives to be pursued in order to achieve the full realization of these freedoms in the technological and political context of the 21st century.” Help by sharing this information French President Emmanuel Macron, who had received the Commission on Information and Democracy at the Elysée Palace on 11 September, the date of its first meeting in Paris, said: “We are at a major turning point today, 70 years after the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, because freedom of opinion and expression, which underpins our democracies and whose progress we had assumed to be irreversible, is in fact again threatened and questioned.”Macron added: “I support your initiative and I am in favour of our agreeing on a set of undertakings based on the declaration presented today. I am in favour of our trying to get as many other countries as possible to join in these undertakings. And I am in favour of our creating a group of internationational experts on this subject, because there is no happiness without freedom and no freedom without courage. You decided to do your duty and I think we, as heads of state and govenrment, should do the same. I would therefore like to say here that France is fully committed to backing this and I thank my fellow heads of state and govenrment here today, who I know share this commitment.” June 7, 2021 Find out more “We’ll hold Ilham Aliyev personally responsible if anything happens to this blogger in France” RSF says to go further In his speech, Tunisia’s President Essebsi also said he also fully supported the political process for information and democracy. “We came here to tell you: yes, we are in favour of this initiative and it is the future that will provide us with the proof of this.” RSF_en Guterres said: “I therefore commend your initiative to establish a Commission on Information and Democracy. It comes at a crucial time when new means of communicating and disseminating information are transforming our world. Access to relevant and reliable information is therefore even more fundamental than ever. Yet, more and more, it is under threat (…) Now more than ever, we must reaffirm the importance of rigorous public debate that is informed, pluralistic and respectful. I thank you for helping to lead the way.” The democratic countries participating in the initiative – approached by RSF on the basis of their respect for democratic standards, their World Press Freedom Index rankings, and the personal qualities of their leaders ­– undertook to defend democratic guarantees in the global information and communication space by taking the International Declaration on Information and Democracy, published on 5 November, as their benchmark For the launch of this initiative, six heads of state or government met for an hour today – from 5 to 6 pm – in the Paris Peace Forum press room in the Grande Halle de la Villette in Paris. In a historic step in the context of the Paris Peace Forum today, 12 countries launched a political process aimed at providing democratic guarantees for news and information and freedom of opinion – a process based on the declaration issued last week by an independent commission that was created at the initiative of Reporters Without Borders (RSF) Receive email alerts Canada’s Prime Minister Trudeau stressed the duty of the leaders of free democracies to “support the need to have strong and independent media in which our fellow citizens have confidence.” Canada, he said “undertakes to defend a free press through the Commission initiated by Reporters Without Borders.” In taking what could be the most significant initiative in defence of the freedom, independence, READ THE DECLARATIONHEREpluralism and reliability of news and information since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, the 12 states responded to an appeal from the Commission on Information and Democracy chaired by RSF secretary-general Christophe Deloire and Nobel peace laureate Shirin Ebadi. RSF calls for a fully transparent investigation after mine kills two journalists in Azerbaijan FranceTunisiaSenegalCosta RicaNorwayCanadaEurope – Central AsiaMiddle East – North Africa AfricaAmericas Events Presenting the Declaration on Information and Democracy together with Ebadi, Deloire told them: “Reporters Without Borders initiated this Commission on Information and Democracy at a time when democracy is undergoing a deep crisis that is also a systemic crisis in the public space (…) with rumours, systematic disinformation, the undermining of quality journalism and often extreme violence against reporters. But we have a duty to examine the structural causes behind these phenomena and to take the appropriate measures (…) because open democracies are bearing the brunt of this turmoil while despotic regimes are exploiting it.” Follow the news on Europe – Central Asia UNESCO director-general Audrey Azoulay and Council of Europe secretary general Thorbjørn Jagland expressed their support from the podium, while UN secretary-general Antonio Guterres spoke via a video message recorded a few days ago. “We thank the heads of state and government for hearing our appeal, Deloire said in reply, calling for the creation of “an International Group of Information and Democracy Experts, akin to what the IPCC is for climate change.” Deloire added: “The comparison with the climate process is not accidental. Like climate, the information ecosystem is unregulated. And, as with the climate, so too for information and democracy, there is a danger that things will spiral out of control. We are close to the breaking point.” November 11, 2018 – Updated on November 12, 2018 Democratic leaders give historic commitment based on Declaration on Information and Democracy The commission consists of 25 prominent figures of 18 nationalities, including Nobel laureates Amartya Sen, Joseph Stiglitz and Mario Vargas Llosa and the Sakharov Prize laureate Hauwa Ibrahim. It also includes new technology specialists, lawyers, journalists and former heads of international organizations. The other members are (listed alphabetically): Emily Bell, Yochaï Benkler, Teng Biao, Nighat Dad, Can Dündar, Primavera de Filippi, Mireille Delmas-Marty, Abdou Diouf, Francis Fukuyama, Ulkir Haagerup, Ann Marie Lipinski, Adam Michnik, Eli Pariser, Antoine Petit, Navi Pillay, Maria Ressa, Marina Walker, Aidan White and Mihaïl Zygar. The 12 countries were from Burkina Faso, Canada, Costa Rica, Denmark, France, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Norway, Senegal, Switzerland and Tunisia. Costa Rican President Carlos Alvarado, Tunisian President Beji Caïd Essebsi, Senegalese President Macky Sall, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg also spoke. Respect judicial independence in cases of two leading journalists in Serbia and Montenegro, RSF says June 4, 2021 Find out more YOAN VALAT / POOL / AFP Five of the Commission members who attended the meeting also spoke, pointing out that journalism is exposed to many threats but is needed more than ever in order to protect democracy. The Indian economist Amartya Sen said: “We need information that is realiable, that is not corrupt. And, as the Commission has stressed, one of the biggest scourges we face today is corrupt news.” The Costa Rican president highlighted the importance of preserving “a pluralist and free public space and access to information.” He added: “Pluralism and freedom of opinion must be guaranteed. Access to factual data and access to knowledge, especially knowledge of actual events, are a fundamental right.”last_img read more

Seadrill makes headway with restructuring plans

first_imgLooking ahead, Seadrill said that the offshore drilling market remains challenging and it expects this dynamic to continue in the short to medium term. The majority of customers remain focused on conserving cash and are still reluctant to commit to significant new capital projects offshore until an increased consistency and upward trend in oil prices is demonstrated. The significant rig supply overhang remains and a faster return to a balanced market will require drilling contractors to be more disciplined in retiring older units, the driller said.According to Seadrill, tendering activity has continued at increased levels, albeit from a low base, over the past few months, especially in the North Sea floater and South-East Asia and Middle-East jack-up segments. Market behavior points increasingly to the market having reached its bottom. An increasing number of recent tenders released by oil companies seek to contract at current bottom of cycle dayrates for increased durations and / or with multiple fixed price options periods.“We still believe in the long term fundamentals of the offshore drilling industry, driven by years of under-investment in new fields and the competitiveness of offshore resources on a full cycle basis,” Seadrill concluded.Also on Wednesday, Seadrill promoted its chief commercial officer Anton Dibowitz to the CEO role, to replace Per Wullf starting from July.Offshore Energy Today Staff In the quarterly report on Wednesday, Seadrill said that, during the first quarter 2017, its revenues decreased by 36% to $569 million from $891 million in the same period of 2016.The company’s operating income dropped by 75% totaling $83 million, compared to $328 million in the prior-year quarter.Net income for the first quarter 2017 was $57 million, resulting in basic and diluted earnings per share of $0.13, compared to net profit of $149 million in the same period of 2016.According to the quarterly report, Seadrill’s headcount has been reduced from 6,995 at year end 2015 to 5,196 at the end of the first quarter. Of the 1,799 reduction, 1,380 have been offshore and 419 onshore.Seadrill’s order backlog as at May 24, 2017 is $3.4 billion, comprised of $1.4 billion for the floater fleet and $2 billion for the jack-up fleet. The average contract duration is 13 months for floaters and 30 months for jack-ups. Profit & revenues down  Offshore driller Seadrill has said it has made progress with its restructuring plans which may involve Chapter 11 solution.In April, the company reached an agreement with its bank group to extend the comprehensive restructuring plan negotiating period until July 31, 2017, reflecting significant progress on the terms of such restructuring made with the bank group, Seadrill said in its first quarter 2017 report on Wednesday.The company also said it is now in advanced discussions with certain third party and related party investors and its secured lenders on the terms of a comprehensive recapitalization. Further, the company is in receipt of a proposal from the third party and related party investors which remains subject to further negotiation, final due diligence and documentation.Seadrill is also in discussions with certain bondholders who have recently become restricted again. While discussions with secured lenders and certain investors have advanced significantly, a number of important terms continue to be negotiated and no assurance can be given that an agreement will be reached.The company continues to believe that implementation of a comprehensive restructuring plan will likely involve schemes of arrangement or chapter 11 proceedings, and it is preparing accordingly.It is likely that the comprehensive restructuring plan will require a substantial impairment or conversion of bonds, as well as impairment and losses for other stakeholders, including shipyards.As a result, the company currently expects that shareholders are likely to receive minimal recovery for their existing shares. The company’s business operations remain unaffected by these restructuring efforts and the company expects to continue to meet its ongoing customer and business counterparty obligations. Bottom reachedlast_img read more

VIDEO: Flings Owusu-Agyapong takes silver in women’s 60m at AIT International Grand Prix

first_imgGhana’s female sprinter Flings Owusu-Agyapong was at her very best in the final of the 60m Women AIT international Grand Prix 2017 in Ireland. Agyapong finished an impressive second in the race with a time of 7.2 seconds behind LAWSON Lekeisha of the United States of America.She qualified to the finals having won her Heat with a time of 7.29 seconds but had to settle for second best in the final showdown. AIT International Grand Prix is an indoor athletics event held annually. It is the fourth year in a row as athletics fans across the Great Britain have been availed of the opportunity to witness some of the world’s best talent on show in the midlands arena.last_img