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Home arrow newsitems arrow UNESCO Head backs Eurofora view on Web Editor's Journalist status + Murder Enquiry: Do Carmo case

UNESCO Head backs Eurofora view on Web Editor's Journalist status + Murder Enquiry: Do Carmo case

Written by ACM
Wednesday, 31 August 2016
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*Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/- A World-Famous WhistleBlower Edward Snowden's reference to "Press Freedom"'s links, (that he Personaly Supports), alerted "Eurofora" about an initialy Unbelievable, Big Positive Aftermath of our July 2016 Article denouncing the Murder of Web Editor Miranda Do Carmo (See: http://www.eurofora.net/brief/brief/webeditorkilled.html) :


Indeed, we were, for once, Positively Surprized to Find out that, after a Long and quasi-Total, scandalously Indifferend "Silence" at almost All Mainstream Media of the Establishment, World-wide, during a Whole Month, even on such a shocking, Brutal and Shameless Cold-Blood Murder of that WebNews Editor, (a former City Employee, who had set up alone a Local News-WebSite often Publishing, during 3 Years now, even quite Critical Reports on some Thorny Local Affairs concerning the current Municipality which had Obliged him to leave his former Job), Killed with many Bullet Shots Fired at his Family Home Doorstep, Suddenly a well-known Brittish Establishment's Newspaper as "The Guardian", astonishingly made a Spectacular "U-Turn", Long-After its staff's Summer Holidays, Starting to Publish, after all these Weeks, a Long Article on that Crime, for the 1st Time !


Why ?


It's, as we Discovered very soon, because, just a Few Days Earlier, even prestigious International Organisation "UNESCO"'s Director General, Irina Bokova, with whom "Eurofora" has Worked in the Past, including at the CoE, (Comp., f.ex., earlier Irina Bokova's Statements to "Eurofora" at : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/unescobokovainternetautomatictranslation.html), had, in the meantime, a Few Weeks After Our Publication, issued a landmark Official Statement Urging to Investigate lone Web-Editor Do Carmo's Murder, in the name of all UNO Member State's Obligation to Protect from Aggressions all Journalists :


- "“I Condemn the Murder of João Miranda do Carmo,” and  “I Call on the Authorities to Investigate this Crime, and Bring its Perpetrators to Justice", said UNESCO's Head. This was done, as a matter of Principle, "so as to Protect Journalists' ability to Continue Contributing to Informed Public Debate", (i.e., a Basic PreCondition to real Democracy), she Stressed.


- The Victim, "Do Carmo", "Owned and Edited a Local News Website", but "was Shot ... at his Home", UNESCO's Official Anouncement reminded.


Concerning such Web-"Media Workers", "the Director-General of UNESCO issues Statements", whenever one of them might, eventualy, be "Killed", "in line with (a) Resolution", already "adopted" by the International Organization's "Member States", as early as since "1997", entitled "Condemnation of Violence against Journalists", this August 2016 Official Document explains.


Headlined : "Director-General Condemns Murder of Journalist Joao Miranda do Carmo in Brazil", this was Posted "on a Dedicated (Web-) Page", Titled : "UNESCO Condemns the Killing of Journalists".

Irina Bokova, currently is among the Front-Runner Candidates for the post of the New Secretary General of the UNO.

The "Resolution No 29", of UNESCO's General Conference of 1997 in Paris, about "Violence against Journalists", to which refers the Recent, August 2016, Official Statement of Director General Irina Bukova, is clearly Founded on the Human Right of Free Speech (refering also to the PanEuropean ECHR), and, speaking about "Journalists", it Focuses on what it explicitly names as "Persons Exercising (i.e. in their Regular Activities : See Infra) the Right to Freedom of Expression", (f.ex. Art. 2, al 2).

 

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=> Apparently, Thanks also to that Boost given by Irina Bokova to that Web-Editor's Murder case Investigation, the competent Local Police in Brazil, managed to Arrest, Shortly Afterwards, also a 2nd Suspect, as "The Guardian" Reports, citting the Local Press and an apparently well-informed US Texas University Blogger specialized on Press Freedom Issues throughout all the American Continent.


Personaly Linked to that Local Municipality, that the Victim used to Strongly Criticize quite Often, (Comp. Supra), those 2 Arrested Suspects might be related also with a Concrete Affair that the Web-Editor had just Covered in an Article among those Published Shortly before his Murder, according to some Local Press Reports, (also compared to do Carmos' Website content - in Portuguese).


-------------------------------------------------------


    "Eurofora" had earlier Published a relevant Interview, with the New "European Federation of Journalists" Secretary General, Ricardo Gutierrez, during a landmark CoE's International Conference on Press Freedom Topical Issues, where he has stressed, in substance, that, in that Field, what Matters most, is Not to have, or not, a so-called "Press Card" (too often issued by some National Outlets rather according to mainly ...Fiscal aspects, as f.ex. the Origin of the Majority of a Person's Financial Revenues, and Not at all according to the Substantial Content of his/her Regular Activity to Produce Original NewsReports Informing about Important Issues affecting People's Lives and the Society at large, while also Respecting Press Deontolgy Rules), but, preferably, to "Be a Good Journalist", as he had resumed, (See : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/iachrcoebookandefjsgonjournalismdefinition.html).


    + This very Topical, General Issue, more and more Widespread in our Post-Modern Times, particularly Since the Digital New Tech. Revolution, added to the World-Wide-Web's Internet, notoriously Bypassed Gutemberg's Old Printing Machine, (which, however, still remains always Useful, even if Otherwise), has also Recently Inspired some Exceptionaly very Long and interesting Thoughts, Ideas and Practical Proposals, that our old Friend, the Experienced Long-Time former Internationa Federation of Journalists' Secretary General, Aidan White, (currently Director of the "Ethical Press Network"), had just Published then, in a Special CoE's Book on "Journalism at Risk", a Hard Copy of which was graciously given to "Eurofora", on which we Published then several Abstracts in an Overall Analysis about such New Media Actors, who should, under certain Conditions, be Protected by all relevant Authorities in the Same Way  as all Journalists, (See Ibid).


    ++ Even More Important, "Eurofora" had also Published then, a Pioneer Analysis of two (curiously often Disregarded and/or Ignored by Establishment's Old Media) Historic, landmark Decisions of the InterAmerican Court of Human Rights (IACHR)n which had Unanimously Condemened the Attempts of some National Governments in Latin America (under the Push of some Selfish, Undemocratic and Obscurantist, Corporatist Lobbies) to Attempt to Impose a similar kind of "Press Card", issued Only on similarly Inadequate Criteria, often Blatantly DisRegarding a Real Media Work, (Comp. Supra), in order to Oblige all News Producers to hold one, Otherwise being Threatened with  Obstacles Hindering their Activities and even Denying them any Recognition and/or Protection as Journalists : The Inter-American Judges clearly Condemned that, as a Blatant, Anti-Democratic and illegal Violation of the Human Right to the Freedom of Expression, which is also a well-known  pre-requisitive to any Genuine Democracy, (as also the PanEuropean, Strasbourg-based ECHR, notoriously admits).


    This had been Timely observed, during that 2 Days long CoE's landmark International Conference, by a Competent CoE's Expert, just 1 Week before the 30th Anniversary of those Historic Judgments of the Inter-American Human Rights' Court, (which, Tragically, "coinciided" with the notorious October 2015 ISIL's Deadly Islamic Terrorist Attacks killing a lot of Innocent Civilian People in Paris)...


Meanwhile, "Eurofora"s NewsReport on that particular Case of Website Editor do Carmo's Murder, Published towards the End of July 2016, has already been Read by about 500 Independent Visitors in Less than 1 Month this Summer, while the Previous, Wider-scope NewsReport on Basic Principles, Published on Mid-October 2015, (i.e. almost 10 Months Earlier), was Read by more than ...7.000 Independent Visitors of "Eurofora.net".


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+ Soros Scandal on 2014 EU Elections' Manipulation + EU Observer staff ...Paid to Woo controversial Millionaire's Wishes !
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A Fortiori, after the Recent Revations made by Leaks of Classified Documents on Controversial Multi-Millionaire Soros' multiple Payments f.ex. to Establishment's Media "EU Observer"'staff in order to Write and Publish Newspaper Articles supporting his Views, as Part of what was Denounced as a much Wider Attempt to "Manipulate Elections in All EU Member States", f.ex.  on the occasion of a "European Elections 2014" on EU Parliament "Project", according to concrete Data released by "DC Leaks" Group of Activists, it would, obviously, become an even Worst Scandal if some EU Agents might, eventualy, have given comfortable Press Accreditations to Individuals Paid by that Lobbystit Millionaire for Articles making his Propaganda, in a Blatant Violation of Elementary Press Deontology Rules, while, almost at the Same Time, they would, perhaps, have Raised Obstacles or even Refused to allow  Access to Other, Honest Press Workers, who simply Accomplish their Duty to Regularly Investigate and Publish Original EU News on various Topical Issues affecting People's Lives and the Society at large, (in line with ECHR's well established Principles on Art. 10 of the PanEuropean Convention on Human Rights) ...


Indeed, it's at least Twice that Controversial Multi-Millionaire Soros paid Establishment's Media "EU Observers"' Staff, First with about 30.000 $, and Afterwards with More than 131.000 $, (etc), in order to Target not only "Europe's Far Right" Politician's "Speech", but even "Mainstream Politicians"' "Rhetoric and Policies" (sic !).  For such purpose, Soros Paid more than "128 Articles" of so-called ... "Professional News Reporting" (sic !), by some, so-called "Experienced, Local (Pseudo-) Journalists", that "EU Observer Recruited", thanks to that Multi-Millionaire's Money, leaked documents revealed, (and such Corrupted Misgivings even Continued also After the 2014 EU Elections !)


Which Shady Bureaucrat would, after that, Dare eventualy Oppress Honest News Reporting by really Independent Journalists, Respecting Press Deontology Rules, Contrary to such Paid Lackeys, on any Hollow Pretext concerning Money ?  After those stunning Revelations (of which there are even more..), any such Arbitrary Blunder, wouldn't stay UnPunished for long, in one way or another...


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People in Europe and the World expect from CoE to make a succes of its "Monitoring" for Human Rights and Democracy, despite difficulties, said Finland's President Tarja Halonen to "EuroFora" at a crucial moment for the mecanism built 15 years ago by the paneuropean organization which celebrates its 60th Anniversary in 2009.

Halonen, known as "Mother" of CoE's "Monitoring" mecanism, a long-time MEP and former Foreign Minister before becoming Finland's President, holds a long experience in the mattter, after also serving twice as CoE and EU Chairwoman in the past. That's why she is well placed to judge how CoE's "monitoring" should deal today with some crucial issues of importance both to CoE and to the EU.

The move came just a Month before a crucial, last visit to Turkey, scheduled for June, by the President of CoE''s "Monitoring" Committee, Ukranian MEP Serge Holovaty, to finalize his Report on Ankara, the CoE Member State with the longest Monitoring procedure. From its results depends its overall credibility.

This is a Test-case, because, in fact, it's in order to avoid Sanctions threatened against Turkey by a CoE's Assembly's April 1995 Resolution for grave Human Rights violations, Democracy gaps, the continuing Military Occupation in Cyprus, the unresolved Kurdish problem, Aegean differend with Greece, etc., that MEPs decided to create, for the 1st time on April 1996, a "Monitoring" proces, allegedly destinated to check, without excluding Countries who did not fulfill all CoE's standards.

In the Past, the obliged withdrawal of Greece's Military regime and of its "Civil" cover-up out of the CoE had helped bring back Democracy in 1974. But, on the contrary, since April 1996, the idea was to "monitor" Human Rights' respect while keeping most concerned Countries inside the CoE. After Turkey's oldest example, this was extended also to several former "Eastern" European Countries, even if CoE's Assembly has imposed to some of them (fex. Ukraine, Russia, etc., after Belarus, Serbia, etc) various "Sanctions", that Ankara always avoided. Curiously more succesful even than .. USA itself, (a CoE "Observer" since 1995), which has been at least threatened with sanctions some years ago..

EU-effects of CoE's Monitoring process became obvious between 2001-2008, since the "closure" of this procedure, when CoE felt that a Country had met most of its Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law obligations, (i.e. the "Copenhagen Criteria" for the EU), helped trigger Negotiations with the EU for "Accession" or other closer relations : This occured already before the 2004 and 2007 EU Enlargements to former "Eastern" European Countries, as well as for the commencement of "accession" negotiations with Croatia, and of "open-ended" negotiations with Turkey in 2005.

    But a stricking new development are Holovaty's recent findings that on core Human Rights issues as Torture and Freedom of Expression, Turkey, even "5 Years after" CoE closed its "Monitoring", back in 2004, inciting EU to start accession Negotiations in 2005, still presents grave problems.

    His findings are of crucial importance after a 2008 CoE Resolution called, "if need be", to "seriously consider the possibility of Re-Opening the Monitoring procedure for Turkey" : A move which might affect Ankara's controversial EU bid, since EU Accession Negotiations are based on the Hypothesis that the Candidate fullfils the "Copenhagen Criteria" (See above)..
-------------------------
    Holovaty expressed his will to check  "Matters still Outstanding" and  those that he "didn't have an opportunity to discuss" at an earlier visit this year, "in order to discuss the more complex issues in greater depth", at his forthcoming New Visit to Ankara, before the December 2009 EU Summit.  This is all based on the 2004 CoE Resolution which stresses that, CoE "will continue.. post-monitoring Dialogue with the Turkish authorities,...in addition to a 12-points list,..and on any Other Matter that might arise in connection with Turkey’s Obligations as a CoE member state".

    CoE's Resolution also asks  from Turkey "to secure the proper Implementation of Judgements, particularly in the Cyprus v. Turkey InterState case", of 2001, which concerns also the plight of many Hundreds of MISSING People. It adds Turkey's obligations to "execute" ECHR's Judgements in the Loizidou case,..and in particular adopt General Measures to avoid repetition or continuation of Violations found by the Court" to the detriment of Refugees.

    Nevertheless, Holovaty said to "EuroFora" that "MISSING" persons,"might be included" and cannot be excluded, but he has yet to examine the situation "to find out  which issues will be raised" to the Turkish Government.

    Therefore, "EuroFora" asked Halonen, as the Historic "Mother" of CoE's Monitoring mecanism, if she thought that, "whenever there are grave Human Rights Violations, as fex. "MISSING" persons, attested even by ECHR's judgements, they should be always checked by a Monitoring process. Or could they be forgotten ?"
    
     - "We (CoE) must be, at the same time, Fair, Realistic, but not in the mind that "now we have Forgotten", etc., replied to "EuroFora"'s question Halonen, speaking as a matter of general principle.

    - "When we think of those People that are suffering from the lack of Democracy, of Human Rights, and of the Rule of Law", "we should find a base on how to deal with the (Monitoring) system more rapidly"', she stressed.

    - "Sometimes it's very difficult to combine Transparency and Effectivenes together, particularly in this specific case", she went on to say. But, "I have not found a (CoE Member) Country who could be insensitive in this sens", Halonen answered concerning grave Human Rights violations attested by the ECHR.

    - "I have no ready-made answer. I have the expectations that you, in the CoE, will, step by step, find the different types of the monitoring systems."

    Also "because this is a part of the UN's Post-Conflict system, (fex. when it comes to Cyprus' MISSING persons), and it's a more Global system". So that, "If we make a succes in Europe, the others will follow", throughout the World.  "But they expect that we (Europe) are this opportunity, this Opportunity to make a Succes", Halonen concluded.

    In addition, she advised to extend CoE's Monitoring to all its 47 Member States, "because, as long as we hear that, all these monitoring systems are "OK for the neighbor, but not for me", "it's very difficult" to understand. Something which could make easier to Compare...

    Finnish MEP Jaako Laakso, former CoE Rapporteur on the Occupied Territories of Cyprus and one of the 5 Signatories of the Historic CoE's call to create the "MONITORING" mecanism since 1996, was more specific :  - "We (CoE Assembly) have to find a way for the issue of Cyprus' MISSING People to be better followed", he stressed, anouncing his intention to "speak to Mr. Holovaty" about that. "There might be also other ways", added Laakso.

    - The 2008 "Year had been a very Bad one for Turkey with regard to Human Rights in general, and Freedom of Expression in particular", denounced, meanwhile, Holovaty's preliminary Post-Monitoringh Draft Report by Holovaty, published by the CoE on April 2009.

    "Amnesty International believes that freedom of expression is not guaranteed given the various articles of the Criminal Code that restrict it. .. "For example, 1,300 Websites are said to have been closed down by the (Turkish) authorities in 2008" ! While "the new Turkish Criminal Code was used to bring a total of 1,072 proceedings between June 2005 and April 2008, and led to the conviction of 192 people", for expressing views. "Representatives of the Özgür Gündem newspaper, which specialises in Kurdish affairs, ..complained about Numerous Attacks on their Freedom of Expression ...as was everyone who advocated a settlement to the question by means other than the intervention of the army" "According to their figures, 19 Newspapers had been suspended 43 times between 4 August 2006 and 4 November 2008" !...

    Moreover, on 2008,  CoE's "Ministers adopted its 4rth Resolution on the execution of the judgments of the ECHR, ...and outstanding issues regarding 175 Judgements and decisions relating to Turkey delivered between 1996 and 2008...  concerning Deaths resulting from the excessive use of force by members of the Security forces, the failure to protect the right to life, the DIisappearance and/or death of individuals, Ill-Treatment and the Destruction of property". CoE's " Ministers urged the Turkish authorities ...to ensure that members of Security forces of all ranks can be prosecuted without administrative
authorisation" for "serious crimes". Holovaty reminded.

"Nonetheless", Holovaty heard anew of "Several cases of Violence committed last year (2008) by the (Turkish) security forces". Amnesty International speaks of Many Cases of ill-treatment and Torture in the prisons and by the police". "Including, fex."'the death of Engin Ceber, a young man of 29 who died on October 2008 as a result of the TORTURE allegedly inflicted on him by police officers, prison staff and members of the gendarmerie. He was part of a group of people arrested on September 2008 during a demonstration and Press Conference in Istanbul'. Proceedings against suspects are "on-going" in this case.

- " I therefore noted an Obvious Contradiction between the Government’s stated “zero tolerance” policy.... of Torture and other forms of ill-treatment, and the different testimonies given", denounced CoE's Rapporteur.  Turkish "authorities must make considerable efforts to guarantee that proper investigations are carried out into allegations of abuses by members of the security forces and that perpetrators are effectively punished" "In this respect, I have requested detailed Statistics on the number of Investigations, acquittals and convictions in cases involving allegations of abuse in order to show the positive impact of the measures taken to date", Holovaty said, repeating a permanently unsatisfied CoE's demand to Turkey since a Decade...

    - "The Political Crisis that shook the country in the spring of 2008 highlighted the Weaknesses of the (Turkish) Constitution", which comes from the Military regime of 1982, "and the Urgent Need of Reforms", stressed from the outset CoE's Rapporteur in 2009. In particular, "the ...Democratic functioning of state institutions, including the independence of the judicial system, are crucial", he observes.

    But, "the Electoral  system and the ways in which it is circumvented do not appear to give those elected complete Legitimacy, and tend to pervert the course of direct universal suffrage", denounces Holovaty, observing that, even 5 Years later, Turkey did not yet change the 10% nationwide Threshold for a party to take any seat, which is "far higher" than the "3%" maximum in Europe and already condemned as contrary to European Standards by the CoE.

    + Moreover, EU Parliament's 2009 Report on Turkey, drafted by Dutch MEP Ria Oomen-Ruijten and adopted in Strasbourg on March, expresses "Concern over the Failure of the (Turkish) Judiciary to prosecute cases of Torture and Ill-treatment, the Number of which is Growing". EU also "is concerned about continuing Hostility and Violence against Minorities" in Turkey. It also "calls on the Turkish Government to launch, as a matter of Priority, a Political Initiatve favouring a lasting Settlement of the Kurdish issue, (while "condemning violence.. and terrorist groups"). EU "regrets that No progress has been made on establishing full, systematic Civilian suprevisory functions over the (Turkish) Military".

    The final results of Holovaty's 2nd and last visit to Turkley will be known later this year, and, at any case, before EU's December 2009 Summit.

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