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Two Canadians who were detained in China were formally accused of spying

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Second Canadian possibly detained in China (2018)

The Beijing City People’s Procuratorate filed a lawsuit against Kovrig on Friday for “spying on state secrets and intelligence.” The Dandong People’s Procuratorate also filed a public prosecution of Spavor for “spying and illegally giving state secrets.”

The two men were arrested in the weeks after the arrest in Meng Wanzhou, Vancouver, chief financial officer of Chinese technology company Huawei at the end of 2018, on charges brought in the United States.

US prosecutors want Meng to be tried on various charges, including bank fraud and violating US sanctions against Iran.

Outside mainland China, the new indictment will trigger fears in Hong Kong over the upcoming national security law, which Beijing will impose on the city, bypassing the local legislature.

This week, the G7 countries say in joint statement that the proposed law can “limit and threaten the basic rights and freedoms of all residents (in Hong Kong) protected by the rule of law and the existence of an independent justice system.”

‘Arbitrary’ detention

Kovrig is a former diplomat in Beijing and works for the International Crisis Group (ICG). Spavor is the founder of Paektu Cultural Exchange, a company that helps facilitate travel to North Korea. He has helped former NBA player Dennis Rodman on his way to Pyongyang to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The Canadian government has repeatedly described their detention as “arbitrary.” Family members and contacts of the two men described them being detained in poor conditions, and refused outside contact.

Guy Saint-Jacques, who served as Canada’s ambassador to China from 2012 to 2016, told CNN last year that Spavor was being held at a detention facility in the northeastern province of Dandong, sharing cells with 18 other detainees, with lights kept burning 24 hours a day and only 15 minutes from outside time. Kovrig was detained in Beijing, said Saint-Jacques, and nobody has had access to lawyers or their family members since they were first detained.

“In both cases they receive consular visits once a month, exactly 30 minutes, with someone there watching all discussions,” he said. “This mainly serves to give them news about their families, and give them books and other reading material. It is very difficult for them, they are waiting and they don’t know when and how they will be released.”

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Someone familiar with the situation told CNN that Canadian diplomatic efforts have so far focused on efforts to resolve what remains a complex political engagement.

There is a greater geopolitical game between China and the United States, where Canada is somewhat caught in the middle, the person added, and two Canadians pay the price.

Saint-Jacques agreed, saying China’s problem was with the US, “but of course they did not dare to arrest former American diplomats or American diplomats who were on leave.”

He said that China had been shocked by the widespread international condemnation of his arrest of the two Canadians, but beyond garnering support from the allies, there was little that Ottawa could do. “It’s very difficult to find something because we don’t have much that the Chinese really want,” he said.

In a statement on the anniversary of his detention last year, the Spavor family said he had been “arrested as an unconscious human piece and unwilling to confront confrontation between the two superpowers and be swept away by geopolitical currents and forces outside his control.”

Shanshan Wang and Steve George from CNN contributed to the reporting.

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Portugal: discrimination against Brazilians is growing – 08/09/2022 – World

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Portugal: discrimination against Brazilians is growing - 08/09/2022 - World

“Brazilian citizenship” was the main reason given in discrimination complaints filed in Portugal in 2021, accounting for 26.7% of the total 408 complaints received by the Commission for Equality and Against Racial Discrimination (CICDR).

While overall, the number of complaints of discrimination in the country decreased by 37.7% compared to 2020 (655) and by 6.4% compared to 2019 (436), reports specifically against Brazilians increased. In 2021, 109 complaints were received for this reason, and in 2020 – 96; growth by 13.5%.

The jump is especially pronounced compared to 2017, when there were only 17 registrations. However, in the same year, the total number of discrimination complaints was also much lower, at 179 complaints. The data is part of the country’s latest Annual Report on the State of Racial and Ethnic Equality and Non-Discrimination, released quietly by the Anti-Discrimination Commission on Tuesday (9).

According to the document, the expressions “Gypsy nationality” with 67 complaints (16.4%) and “Black/black/black/black race” with 65 complaints (15.9%) are expressed “with significantly lower values”.

The more general expression “foreigners/foreigners/immigrants in general” comes in fourth place with 18 complaints (4.4% of the total) “corresponding to cases in which the victims felt they were discriminated against for being foreigners, immigrants or non-migrants”. who are Portuguese citizens. , we are not talking about a crime against a specific nationality.

In 2021, legally residing Brazilians made up about 30% of the nearly 700,000 foreigners living in the country, according to data from the SEF (Service for Foreigners and Borders), in 2021 — partial data released by the agency on Tuesday showed that the country’s community continued to grow. .

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In Portugal, depending on the specifics of the case, episodes of ethnic and racial discrimination can be classified as a crime or a so-called misdemeanor, a lesser crime. This is how most registered offenders are classified, resulting in lighter penalties. These episodes are analyzed by the CICDR, which has autonomy and decision-making authority.

“CICDR has the power to make decisions and impose fines [multas] and additional sanctions in the framework of administrative offenses. But such decisions can always be challenged in court. Sometimes yes, sometimes no,” explains Pedro Barosa, Partner at Abreu Advogados. In 2021, the Commission issued only two sentences, one fine and one warning (a kind of public warning).

A survey carried out by the Combat project of the Center for Social Studies (CES) of the University of Coimbra analyzed data on discrimination from 2006 to 2016 and showed that about 80% of cases initiated by the Commission for Equality and Against Racial Discrimination end up being shelved. A guilty verdict was handed down in 7.5% of cases. However, in appeals overturning or contesting these decisions, convictions are reduced to 5.8%.

According to José Falcao, leader of the NGO SOS Racismo, several convictions in Portugal mean that, in practice, crimes of racism in the country go unpunished. “The law does absolutely nothing to combat racial discrimination. This law in its current form is useless,” he says, citing the case of MP Andre Ventura, leader of the far-right Chega party.

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CICDR fined the parliamentarian 3,770 euros (19,700 reais) for comments that were deemed discriminatory against Roma ethnicity on a Facebook page, but Ventura filed an appeal and the court acquitted him.

According to Falcao, the difficulty in exposing cases of discrimination often begins at the police stations, when the police still routinely dissuade complainants.

In an interview with Sheet In July, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ana Catarina Méndez said the Portuguese government was investigating complaints that already pointed to an increase in discrimination, but stressed that the increase was also due to migrants’ greater awareness of the issue. which leads to more complaints.

Psychologist Cynthia de Paula, president of Casa do Brasil in Lisbon, a non-governmental organization that provides assistance to the Brazilian community, also believes that immigrants are becoming more attentive. We have received more messages [de discriminação]but I think a larger denunciation movement has also been created,” he said.

In this sense, in addition to increasing racial debate in some parts, the very characteristics of the new wave of Brazilian migration to Portugal may contribute to a greater willingness to openly discuss complaints of discrimination. This group, which is more active and includes many students, professionals and entrepreneurs, has formed groups and associations and used social media to raise awareness of the issue.

This topic was especially discussed in the country after the great resonance of racist insults made by a Portuguese woman. against the children of Brazilian actors Giovanna Eubank and Bruno Gallasso. The case took place on July 30 in a restaurant in Costa da Caparica, near Lisbon. The woman was arrested but later released by the police.

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The couple’s press service states that the aggressor “asked them to leave the restaurant and return to Africa, among other absurdities pronounced to the children as“ dirty blacks ”. The actors wrote a statement to the police. The Ministry of Industry and Trade confirmed that they had launched an investigation into this case.

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“The Portuguese coach has the ability to adapt quickly”

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"The Portuguese coach has the ability to adapt quickly"

PAulo Fonseca couldn’t have dreamed of a better start to the French Championship, beating Auxerre 4-1.

in an interview provided by the official media of Lillethe Portuguese coach explained what philosophy to apply in the French club this season.

“My philosophy is to have the ball. Dominate games. Make the team play the ball with great dynamics. With a strong reaction when we lose the ball. It’s hard for me when I feel like the team doesn’t have the ball. … be the protagonist of the game and I like to dominate. I have to know what to do with the ball. I have to know how I can find the right moments and spaces to attack,” Paulo Fonseca began.

“Sometimes I pay special attention to central defenders. Not because I was a fantastic player, but because I wasn’t. But I know how they feel at certain moments in the game. Sometimes I pay more attention to some details. went through those moments and those details,” he added.

The coach also named 4-2-3-1 as his preferred tactical system: “It’s a system that we can use against any other system. However, the system is something static only at the beginning of the game. everything is different. It depends on the dynamics of the team. It depends on the movements you want from the team. For me, the initial system is not the most important. More than that, it’s team dynamics.”

When asked what coaches inspired him in his career, Paulo Fonseca pointed to the Portuguese without hesitation.

“Many Portuguese coaches inspire me. I have many names in several fields that inspire me a lot. We have a good coaching school. The federation with this president changed football in Portugal a lot. So many Portuguese coaches around the world. We have the ability to adapt to different countries and different styles of play. I think the Portuguese coach has this ability to quickly adapt to different circumstances,” Paulo Fonseca said, calling Guardiola “an inspiration”. “It’s the best in the world,” he concluded.

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Read also: Lille de Paulo Fonseca starts with everything in the new edition of Ligue 1

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Fernando Pimenta leads a delegation of 23 kayakers at the European Championships in Munich.

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Fernando Pimenta leads a delegation of 23 kayakers at the European Championships in Munich.

Limiano will compete in the K1 500, 1000 and 5000, as well as the K2 1000 with Joao Duarte, with whom he won gold in the World Cup.

The Portuguese canoeing team, which won four medals at the World Championships in Canada, three of them with the participation of Fernando Pimenta, will compete at the European Championships in Munich from 18 to 21 August with 23 athletes.

“If in the most important event of the year we managed to get this amount, we believe that in Europe the canoeing team will continue to delight the Portuguese, like us, in several crews, clear contenders for the podium”, said Lusa, the president of the federation, Vítor Felix .

The nine present in Halifax – seven from the Olympic team and two from the Paralympic team – will be boosted to include the rest of the women’s team, joined by Teresa Portela, as well as the canoe team, for a total of five elements. that Halifax failed.

Paracanoe, who had Norberto Murao’s bronze in VL2, also doubles, competing in Germany with four elements.

Fernando Pimenta is returning to compete in several 500m, 1000m and 5000m events and will be redoubled in his desire to win the gold he failed in Canada.

The Portuguese’s disappointment ran to five hundredths of a second in the K1 1000 and 300 thousandths in the K2 500 mixed in with Teresa Portela, and in the K1 5000 he was forced to give up with a broken rudder while leading the race.

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Limiano will compete in the K1 500, 1000 and 5000, as well as the K2 1000 with Joao Duarte, with whom he won gold in the World Cup.

Also of note is the K2 500 of Joao Ribeiro and Messias Baptista, fifth in the World Championships after gold and bronze in the World Cups, who later joined Emanuel Silva and David Varela in the reorganized K4 500 which was seventh. In Canada.

Teresa Portela will run the K1 200m and 500m finishes sixth and 10th in Halifax, on a team that in Germany will have the experience of fellow Olympians Francisca Laya, Joana Vasconcelos and Hélder Silva.

European canoeing is part of a multi-sport event that brings together nine modalities.

Entry and competition from Portugal to the European Championship in Munich

– 200 meters:

K1 Teresa Portela.

K1 Kevin Santos.

C1 Helder Silva.

C1 Ines Penetra.

– 500 meters:

K1 Fernando Pimenta.

K1 Teresa Portela.

K2 Joao Ribeiro/Messias Baptista.

K2 Francisca Laia/Joana Vasconcelos.

K4 Joao Ribeiro/Messias Baptista/Emanuel Silva/David Varela.

K4 Francisca Carvalho/Francisca Laya/Ana Brito/Maria Rey.

C1 Helder Silva.

C2 Marco Apura/Bruno Afonso.

C2 Ines Penetra/Beatrice Lamas.

– 1000 meters:

K1 Fernando Pimenta.

K2 Fernando Pimenta/Joao Duarte.

– 5000 meters:

K1 Fernando Pimenta.

C1 Beatrice Lamas.

Paracanoe:

VL2 Norberto Murao.

KL1 Alex Santos.

KL1 Floriano Jesus.

KL2 Hugo Costa.

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