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Zimbabwe Accused of Stiffling Press Freedom

Rights groups in Zimbabwe have denounced the High Court denying bail to journalist Hopewell Chin’ono,who is facing charges of stoking violencein advance of planned anti-government protests.

Security forces thwarted the July 31 protests against corruption and poverty,arresting Chin’ono and an opposition leader.  South Africa is sendingenvoys to Zimbabwe to investigate reports of escalating rightsabuses,which the government denies.

Supporters of Chin’ono fear his continued detention is a way for authorities to silence critical reporting against corruption.

“It’s a clear indication that Zimbabweanvauthorities are not prepared to have journalists who will expose government corruption and speakingtruth to power,” Robert Shivambu, Amnesty International’s spokesman in Southern Africa told VOA.

“The government of Zimbabwe should stop intimidating journalists like Hopewell Chin’ono and allow them to be able to do their job to expose corruption because this is good for the country,in fact,so that law enforcement agencies can be able to follow up what journalists like Hopewell are reporting-not criminalizing for exposing that.”

Zimbabwe’s High Court Thursday afternoon ruled against Chin’ono’s appeal for bail.

He’s been detained for three weeks on charges of stoking violence ahead of a planned protest last week thatsecurity forces stopped before it could begin.

Chin’ono is an outspoken critic of corruption, which the protest was to be against– along with the government’s handling of Zimbabwe’s imploding economy.

Speaking to reporters after Chin’ono was denied bail,Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights’ Beatrice Mtetwa said it was clear that authorities want to silence critical voices.

“I think everybody knows what happens in Zimbabwe: those who say they are fighting for corruption are walking in the streets with their corrupt loot in the pocket and those saying y I more and more persecuted,” she said.

Opposition politician Jacob Ngarivhume was arrested on the same charges as Chin’ono and also remains in prison.

Meanwhile,Zimbabwe authorities have released a “wanted list”of activists, and more than a dozen have gone into hiding.

Government spokesman NickMangwana rejected the idea that authorities are targeting activists or journalists.

“There is a journalist who happens to be an activist, whose actions may cross the boundaries of the law.They are not immune from prosecution, if they do that,” he said. “If they incite and there is a law against incitement, the fact that they are a journalist does not give them immunity from that prosecution.That’s the difference.So, every other journalist who goes doing their business there is no problem.There is even no problem being an activist itself.But within the contest of breaking the law, the law will take its course.”

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, the current chairperson of the Africa Union, has appointed special envoys to Zimbabwe to investigate the accusations.

Head of Human Rights Watch in Southern Africa Dewa Mavhinga says more is needed.

“We are calling for the Southern African Development Community and the African Union to urgently speak out on the abuses in Zimbabwe and urge President Mnangagwa to endrepression andtopromote human rights respect.  Human rights in Zimbabwe should be guaranteed and should be respected,” Mavhinga said.

Critics accuse Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa of ruling the country with an iron fist, muchlike former President Robert Mugabe.  

After Mugabe was removed  in a 2017 coup, Mnangagwa vowed Zimbabwe would no longer bethe0 dictatorship of his predecessor.

VOA

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India News Brief

21 October, 2020
India New COVID-19 Cases 54,044 and Deaths 717 in Last 24 Hours
COVID-19 Total Cases: 7,597,063  Deaths 115,197 
How to identify Fake News or Messeges on Social Media 

Beware of Fake News and Fake Messages on Social Media

Always follow websites or social media platforms of traditional media outlets whether newspapers, magazines,Television News Channels or Radio Stations and authentic online only media outlets.They still maintain journalism excellence and stress on reportorial talent.On the other hand, fake news websites run by people with non journalism background and promote their own ideology with fake news and disinformations and obviously conspiracy theories.

But unfortunately mainstream media also manipulates news to establish their story angle.There were various instances when News papers and TV Channels promoted fake news/conspiracy theories in the form of out of context or manipulated pictures/videos and distorted informations.

Always check the URL of any website.Some fake news websites look like the orginal and popular one the same layout,Logo but if you check the URL you may find extra words like if the orginal website's URL is www.xxx.com the duplicate one might be www.xxx.com.co or something like that so first check the URL for authentic informations.

Check whether photos are original or photoshopped.Check Google images for authenticity.You can find help from Google Reverse Images search.

Check the news sources from other websites whether they picked up the story or not.

Whether the website layout is little bit clumsy and obviously grammatical mistakes and spelling mistakes and excessive use of Sex related and sensational and hate stories.Because sex and hate sells.

Follow official websites relating to COVID-19

WHO Clarifies the disinformation about the virus:
COVID-19 virus can be transmitted in areas with hot and humid climates
Cold Weather and Snow can not kill the new coronavirus
Taking a Hot Bath Does Not Prevent COVID-19
COVID-19 Can not be transmitted through mosquito bites

Spraying alcohol or chlorine all over your body will not kill viruses that have already entered your body. Spraying such substances can be harmful to clothes or mucous membranes (i.e. eyes, mouth)

According to World Health Organization (WHO): Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water

Maintain at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.

Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth . If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early

Stay at home if you begin to feel unwell, even with mild symptoms such as headache and slight runny nose, until you recover.

If you develop fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical advice promptly as this may be due to a respiratory infection or other serious condition

Follow WHO guidelines

www.who.int

When you follow COVID-19 related news and messages from social media then check and recheck it before consuming it.Follow journalism mantra: if your mother says she loves you, check it out.

Most of the messages or informations quote different organizations like WHO, UNICEF, UNDP,Cambridge University  or other well known institutes,organizations or individual to authenticate the messeges.Check official websites of these organizations  if stories are repeated there

Forwarding messages from unknown sources or little known sources, it would be better to ignore it.

Check whether any logo like UNICEF or WHO or other organizations used in the messages which look similar to original logo.

These type of messages are full of Grammatical mistakes and spelling mistakes which are quite uncommon in original messages.

Don't rely on viral social media messages such as Coronavirus Infected Indian Currencies of Rs.500 and Rs.2,000 Notes Found, Muslim Man Spit in Food At Indian Restaurant.....Always Check Authentic Sources.

Some fake messages pretend to be real one like unofficial Twitter handle of international media organizations like BBC,CNN,Washinton Post, New York Times-check the official Twitter handles of media outlets.

You can identify fake messages if the message requests you to share it.

Beware of Fake News or Fake Photos/Videos Relating to Communal Hatred

Always check the fact checking sites if you have some doubts about the authenticity of any information or picture.

www.boomlive.in

www.altnews.in

https://check4spam.com

https://smhoaxslayer.com

www.factchecker.in

www.allsides.com

www.factcheck.org

www.newsbusters.org

www.politifact.com

www.snopes.com

www.propublica.org

The Same Method Applies to You Tube Videos Check the Source the credibility of the Source.To Check Fake You Tube Videos Check and Recheck the sources. Does the person have the legal right to the video posted? Did that person capture the video? Whether it has been altered?

But due to advancement of technology we can not really wipe out fake news.According to experts advent of  Artificial Intelligence(AI) some companies small or big one developing  technologies that can  lay digitally created script to anybody's voice  even words,sentences never said by the person.Even they a.re developing a technology which can create fake video footage,images,audios like originals.So be cautious! Rumour-mongers are active everywhere whether in physical world or cyber world.

For any further information relating to fake news and how-to search authentic informations from the internet write to us info@crimeandmoreworld.com or Whats App:+919073399779

COVID-19 Related Conspiracy Theories:
https://fsi.stanford.edu/news/china-covid19

 

 

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