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US data whistleblower mulls fate in Hong Kong 10/06/2013 18:35 CET
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Edward Snowden the man who revealed that US agencies are gathering millions of phone records and monitoring internet data, has disappeared.
Snowden apparently checked out of his Hong Kong hotel where he had fled following his revelations, ahead of a probable push by the US government to have him sent back to the United States to face charges.
The National Security Agency at the heart of the scandal certainly wants him back.
Snowden had admitted he was the ‘whistleblower with a conscience’ in a video released by Britain’s Guardian Newspaper.
“He faces a very difficult situation now,” said Janine Gibson, Editor-in-Chief Guardian, United States. “He’s expressed that he would like, perhaps, to be given asylum in somewhere like Iceland which has an excellent track record on freedom of information. And perhaps that will come out for him. Clearly we wouldn’t want to see him come to any harm.”
There have already been signs that Snowden’s disclosures have some sympathy, a rally of support was held in New York while thousands have signed an online petition urging President Obama to pardon him.
However the NSA says he has committed a criminal offence and undermined efforts to track down terrorists.
More about: Barack Obama, CIA, Phone hacking scandal
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According to the Central Bank of Cyprus, the once offshore paradise lost out on Russian accounts, as investors pulled their money as they sensed the banking crisis looming.In Luxembourg, Russian investments grew by $7 billion, in the British Virgin Islands by $4.7 billion, in Ireland by $4.6 billion, and in the Netherlands by $2.8 billion, the Russian newspaper Izvestia reported.Head of Investments at the ‘Solid’ Investment and Financial Company, Michael Koroljuk explains the decline in market attractiveness in Cyprus since the crisis broke out.“The emergence of this ‘stigma’ of Cyprus is perceived as a bad tax authority and business partner,” Korljuk told Izvestia.Offshore oligarchs, trying to minimize their losses in Cyprus, didn’t bring their money to back Russia, but have reinvested their capital in other, more feasible, offshore zones.“Instead of Russia, it is rushing off to other offshore areas,” Maxim Osadchiy, head analyst at BKF Bank, told Izvestia.Because they provide more financial security than Cyprus, other offshore zones are a little more expensive, but the figures show Moscow’s millionaires are happy to pay extra for peace of mind.The more ‘respectable’ offshore destinations still offer similar tax breaks, and offer more protection for businessmenThough the financial crisis sent many investors into a slight hysteria and prompted them to abandon ship, the actual losses incurred as a result of crisis appear to be fractional.Russia’s largest commercial bank, VTB, which had assets up to $1.8 billion in Cyprus, reported to be virtually unaffected by the collapse.Strengthening ties between Moscow and LuxembourgBy increasing their holdings in Luxembourg, Russians are reciprocating the small European financial hub’s long standing tradition of Russian investment. Luxembourg is the third largest country in total investments in the Russian economy, and has invested 28 billion euros in Russian projects.Russian investment only accounts for 4.4 billion euros of Luxembourg’s 43 billion euro economy.Luxembourg may be Russia’s new window to Europe, the Minister for Economy and Foreign Trade, Etienne Schneider, has stated.”To develop serious business contacts and create new joint projects, we need to look ahead and prepare professionals who are familiar with economic realities of our countries,” said Schneider. … Read More
http://www.youtube.com/v/oJBk1deMs-g?version=3&f=videos&app=youtube_gdata Read original article: Bangladesh rescue details emerge
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Reporters Without Borders is relieved to learn that newspaper publisher Ousmane Sy Savané was finally released on 3 May, World Press Freedom Day, after being held for just over 13 months on a charge of endangering state security. However, his release is only provisional, and Reporters Without Borders joins the National Union of Côte d’Ivoire Journalists (UNJCI) in calling for his definitive release. The CEO of the Cyclone publishing house, Savané had been held since 27 March 2012. “We welcome (…) … Read More
Reporters Without Borders is relieved by the 30 April announcement that all charges have been dropped against Boukary Daou, editor of the privately-owned newspaper Le Républicain. He was arrested on 6 March after publishing an army officer’s open letter and was later freed on 2 April. The media freedom organization nonetheless still deplores that fact that this journalist was detained arbitrarily for a month. 03.04.2013 – Newspaper editor released conditionally after four weeks Reporters (…) … Read More