May 6, 2009

Brazil: Online and Offline Protests Against Supreme Court President

A demonstrations demanding that Brazil's Supreme Court President Gilmar Mendes steps down took place in three Brazilian states (Brasília, Belo Horizonte and São Paulo). Around 10,000 people were expected to show up in the simultaneous protests.

Earlier this month, a row between Chief Justice Gilmar Mendes and Joaquim Barbosa, both magistrates of Brazil’s Supreme Court, was broadcast live on television has been denounced as 'shameful' by the press and bloggers, as reported by Global Voices Online.

Some reactions:

  1. Myris
    myris (Brasil) Impeachment ao Ministro Gilmar Mendes? #SaiaGilmar (Impeachment against Judge Gilmar Mendes?)
  2. Junior
    Escalafobetico (Indaial) Daqui a pouco o Gilmar Mendes dá um jeito de foder com a liberdade na internet,aham, #SaiaGilmar (It will not take long for Gilmar Mendes to f••k with freedom on the Internet, aham)
  3. João Porto
    joaoporto (Brasília) Protesto contra Gilmar Mendes em três capitais (demonstrations against Gilmar Mendes in three capital cities)
  4. Gilmar Crestani
    crestani (Brasil) Estou na contramão. Não sou a favor do "fora gilmar" simplesmente porque não se pode expelir fezes sem a participação de órgão apropriado... (I'm against the tides. I don't support the "go away gilmar" simplely because it is not possible to get rid of excrement without the help of relevant organs...)
  5. Brunna Souza
    BrunnaSouza (Goiânia) Campanha: "Ministro Gilmar Mendes saia às ruas e não volte ao STF". (Campaign: "Judge Gilmar Mendes go away and do not come back to STF").
  6. Eduardo Patriota
    duduziuz (São Paulo) Sucesso para o povo que vai hoje à luta pelo impeachment de Gilmar Mendes! Por um Brasil mais justo #saiagilmar (Wishing success to the people going to the streets to fight for Gilmar Mendes' impeachment! Por um Brasil mais justo #saiagilmar)
  7. Jorge Magalhães
    magal (Macaé) Ministro Gilmar Mendes, disse nesta quarta que considera normal manifestações pedindo a sua saída da presidência, pois é saia à rua ministro (judge Gilmar Mendes said this wednesday that he thinks it is normal to have demonstrations calling him to leave the presidency, yeah go to the streets, Mr Judge)
-- this quote was brought to you by quoteurl

Barbosa had accused Mendes of “destroying the credibility of the judicial system” and challenged Mendes to talk to the man on the street, to measure his low level of popularity. Today's protest was "to demand that Mendes do so – and never came back"

The main tag of the day is #foragilmar, but there were also #saiagilmar and #foragilmarday. There is an reactions aggregator and the "Go Away Gilmar" campaign has its own blog in Portuguese.

Some photos by twitpic user proveisso fromthe protest in Brasilia, in front of the Supreme Court buildings:


Featured TwitPic: Library fire drill in Egypt

"Picture from the AUC library fire drill this afternoon…" (Posted by @andrewheiss, Cairo, Egypt, May 6, 2009)


Russia responds to NATO act by expelling Canadian diplomats

Per BBC, "Russia has expelled two Canadian diplomats working for NATO's Moscow office in response to an 'unfriendly act' by the military alliance."

The move followed two Russian envoys being expelled from NATO's headquarters in Brussels last week, allegedly as a result of spying.

Canadian Twitterers were baffled by the news:

  1. Rickster
    rickster_CA (Toronto, Canada) Russia expels 2 Canadian diplomats??? What did we ever do to them?
  2. Tom Woodhall
    tommydoubleu (Toronto, Canada) That's it. We're going to war with Russia. How do you expell a Canadian diplomat? Ask them nicely? Insult their hockey team of choice?
  3. Mark MacKinnon/马凯
    markmackinnon (Canada/Asia) I know one of those tossed. If he's a spy, I'm a point guard for the LA Lakers.
  4. dan levy
    danjl (Montreal, Canada) Russia expels Canadian diplomats; Makes Canadians feel bad-ass.
  5. Kath Halloran
    lifeonqueen (Toronto, Canada) The diplomatic equivalent of kicking the dog after fight with spouse RT@nytimesworld Russia to Expel CDNs #nato #canada

No Russian tweets about the incident could be immediately found.


Pregnant woman accused of drug trafficking escapes death penalty

Per CNN, Samantha Orobator, a pregnant British woman, who was arrested for allegedly trafficking half a kilogram of heroin through Laos in August will not be sentenced to death by firing squad because she is pregnant according to a Laotian Foreign Ministry spokesman. "The country's criminal law prohibits courts from sentencing pregnant women to death," said spokesman Khenthong Nuanthasing.

Orobator was also allegedly denied access to a British lawyer who was to meet with her Sunday but has since been refused permission to speak with Orobator, according to a human rights group.

Twitterers reacted to the news:

  1. John David 约翰大卫
    DivadNhoj1981 (Galveston, Texas) RT @CynthiaY29: Update: Pregnant Brit Won't Face Laos Death Penalty II *Heaves sigh of relief* #p2
  2. Erica Revish
    ericarachelle (Columbus, Ohio) So, the Pregnant British woman accused of trafficking drugs won't face firing squad, but is being denied a lawyer. Geez:
  3. Anna Morris
    magicmoz (London, U.K.) Laos says pregnant women can't be sentenced to death but what happens if trial put off until after she gives birth?
  4. Justin Yost
    jtyost2 (Lubbock, Texas) Liked "Pregnant Briton denied lawyer visit in Laos, rights group says: A pregnant British woman jailed in Laos was..."
  5. Tim Adams
    Timdadams (Seattle, Wash.) Man! They go hard in Laos! -