Most of Ireland’s foreign aid budget goes to just seven African countries. The Irish Independent asks why is there little debate over whether these funds are going where they should, following high-profile […]
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Things are looking less sour for graft-tainted engineering giant SNC-Lavalin, which received a boost Monday when an analyst upgraded his rating and price estimate for the company’s stock following changes to the federal government’s procurement policy, announced in last week’s budget.
A lawsuit filed by the daughter of retired Communist Party official, Li Rui, challenges the legality of airport seizures in China after a book by her father — an unvarnished account of his experiences in the leadership — was confiscated by customs officials. The country’s border controls have sharpened dramatically in recent years, making it much riskier to bring banned books to mainland China, say publishers and authors. The New York Times reports.
Chinese activist, Hu Jia, has been under strict police monitor since his release from jail four years ago. Here, he talks to The Weekend Australian about his life in Beijing living in an apartment building — ironically named Freedom City — under constant surveillance.
China orders the closure of small plants in 10 polluting industries and a curb on the tapping of aquifers in an effort to reign in contamination of its water supply. Probe International Fellow, activist and journalist Dai Qing is quoted for this article by the Financial Times.
According to Beijing’s bid to hold the 2022 Winter Olympic Games, the environmental impact of the Games will be “ecofriendly” and “sustainable”. Experts say otherwise: providing snow for events will be tough in a city where “it just doesn’t snow” and “a Martian-like plan” will be needed to create artificial cover. Conservationists worry about moves to build Olympic ski resorts in national parks and protected nature reserves. Ski resorts, meanwhile, require water and lots of it but Beijing doesn’t have water.
Sri Lanka’s new government is reviewing all investment projects signed by the previous administration. Chinese companies, awarded the majority of those deals, are at the center of the storm. Sri Lanka’s new finance minister, Ravi Karunanayake, says Chinese firms “used the opportunity of a corrupt regime to crowd out other companies”. CNNMoney and Business Insider report.
A third of the $18 million slated to combat Ebola in Sierra Leone may have gone to pay non-existent “ghost” workers, a government audit finds.
A Chinese court has agreed to hear a lawsuit filed by an environmental NGO seeking $US4.8-million in damages from an industrial polluter in Shandong province — thought to be the first public interest litigation for air pollution under China’s new environmental law. ChinaFile reports.
Lawyer Xi Xiangdong: Record of a meeting with He Zhengjun of the Transition Institute, detained on suspicion of “operating an illegal business”
This record of a meeting between He Zhengjun, a member of the Beijing-based independent think-tank Transition Institute, and his lawyer, Xi Xiangdong, earlier this year, details the roadblocks thrown up by prison authorities in disregard of the regulations that should permit a lawyer access to his client within a certain time frame.
More than fifty days have passed since detained legal activist and scholar, Guo Yushan, was taken from his Beijing home. His wife, Pan Haixia, posts her third letter to him online in his absence.
This in-depth, must-read looks at a spike in intolerance for activism in China, which, under President Xi Jinping, has culminated in a massive setback for the country’s human rights activists, faced with the most severe crackdown since the Tiananmen massacre in 1989. China Digital Times explores what happened and why the government is so threatened by the emergence of independent civic groups and both domestic and foreign NGOs.
One year after Premier Li Keqiang declared war on pollution, the central government seems to be refraining from making any new promises on the matter this year, focusing instead on following through on all its previously set targets. South China Morning Post reports.
Media sources in India are following the Canadian government’s investigation of SNC-Lavalin with great interest.
To some, the availability of big data in China signals a shift toward democracy. But technocrats within the government also see it as a way to create a more efficient form of authoritarianism. Aeon Magazine reports.