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Who's Afraid of Wei Jingsheng?

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Who's Afraid of Wei Jingsheng?)

This week Dateline meets one of China's most famous democracy activists, Wei Jingsheng.


Mr Wei was actually one of the key case studies in Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's thesis in 1980 on human rights in China.

Have Your Say: Is Wei Jingsheng right to urge Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to do more to promote democracy in China?

Video: The Life of a Video Journalist

Mr Wei was jailed for 18 years for writing an article that criticised the then-Premier Deng Xiao Ping. Now, he is a leading figure in China’s democracy movement and has hit the campaign trail in the months before the Beijing Games.

David O’Shea joins Mr Wei on the road in London, as he spruiks his message to sympathetic (and not so sympathetic) audiences.

Along the way, Mr Wei is introduced to British politicians who are happy to meet with him, but only in private. He also speaks to Chinese students, some of whom applaud him, but others heckle. He says they were ordered to do so by the Chinese embassy.

They say they don't agree with his message. “He was just misleading us, misleading foreign countries to get them to overturn the Chinese government,” one student says.


Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's interest in China goes back to his university days where he was polishing his Mandarin skills and in 1980, writing his honours thesis on the ordeals of human rights activist Wei Jingsheng. Wei Jingsheng is now based in the US but is still at the coal face, pushing for human rights in China. David O'Shea caught up with him recently in London for his views on China and on Kevin Rudd.

REPORTER: David O'Shea

Wei Jingsheng has learned to catch up on sleep whenever he can. The world’s most prominent Chinese dissident has a punishing schedule urging anyone who will listen to support the democracy movement in China. And with the days ticking away before the Olympic Games, he is cranking up the pace.

WEI JINGSHENG, HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST (Translation): I’d like to say this to every politician. It won’t affect China alone. If there’s turmoil in China, every country’s interests will be harmed.

London is the latest leg of his tireless campaign, a series of meetings with local activists, university students, and politicians. Now with his interpreter and human rights group, Amnesty International’s China campaign manager, he is off to the British foreign office.

KRISTYAN BENEDICT, AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL: The work we are doing with China at the moment especially with the UK Government is getting them to acknowledge that there is an increasing crackdown on human rights activists in China and always increases once you get to June 4 – and to speak more publicly about that crackdown.

REPORTER: What do you hope to achieve when you go to meetings like this?

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): I hope that British politicians urge the Chinese Government to carry out reforms, particularly political reforms. China at present is at crossroads. So if no reforms take place soon, China may fall into even greater turmoil.

When the Mandarin-speaking Kevin Rudd became Prime Minister of Australia, Wei Jingsheng sat up and took notice.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): Many Chinese expect him to care more about human rights in China. He himself lives in a free country. He runs a democratic system and knows it very well. Ordinary Chinese people feel Kevin Rudd should promote democracy in China. Compared to other Western politicians, he should play a bigger role.

Wei Jingsheng once had impeccable communist party credentials. He was born into a high-ranking military official family and brought up in prestigious party schools. He was even a red guard in his youth. But he became disillusioned and in the 1970s, started an underground magazine and began posting articles on what became known as “democracy wall” in downtown Beijing. He pushed the boundaries harder than anyone else but seemed to get away with it for a while until he posted a very critical essay about the then Premier Deng Xiao Ping.

Three days later, on 29 March 1979, he was arrested and then put on a show trial. He spent the next 15 years in prison. Wei was released as China made its bid for the 2000 Olympic Games but when the honour was bestowed on Sydney, the Chinese authorities locked him up again. President Clinton intervened and cut a deal to get him released after three years and deported to the US where he now lives.

REPORTER: The Chinese leadership of course just dismiss you as a stooge of the CIA? What do you say to that?

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): If it was true, the CIA would have a high-profile agent. I have nothing to do with the CIA.

Shortly after his release from prison, Mr Wei met Mr Rudd in 1999. He says the then opposition parliamentarian showed him his university thesis, which focuses on him and outlines his key role in the early democracy movement. It is a highly detailed dissertation which conveys Rudd’s clear admiration for his strength, courage and commitment. Mr Wei is now calling on Rudd, the Prime Minister, to resurrect his university idealism and use his influence to push Beijing to reform.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): But as far as I can see, particularly during the election and since he was elected, he hasn’t done much. I’m not disappointed in him yet. But he hasn’t done anything over a long period. We may need to urge him to do something. We should give him some new information. I’m thinking of visiting Australia later when I’m not too busy. I’d like to talk to him in person.

Mr Wei is now the chairman of the Overseas Chinese Democracy Coalition in Washington DC. He spends his life lobbying policy makers and politicians for support. But Mr Wei admits to a second agenda.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): We have another important job, to undermine the Communist foreign policies. The Chinese Government wants to rope Western countries in, so we need to destroy their plans. These are our two tasks in foreign affairs.

Many times on this trip I hear people say China’s rapid development has lifted millions out of poverty and improving human rights will follow. Mr Wei scoffs at the idea that the economy should come first.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): Human rights are basic human needs. Even if one is hungry and poor, one still needs human rights – that’s human nature. It has no direct connection with the economy.

REPORTER: Shouldn’t we just be patient and let things happen on their own?

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): The Chinese people have given the Government 60 years and after 60 years, the country is still a mess. So time isn’t the solution. The key question is whether there’s a free press and whether there’s a responsible legal system. Without such a legal system, reforms can only be marginal, unreliable and unsubstantial.

Amnesty International have brought Mr Wei to London for a series of events to commemorate the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre where hundreds of pro-democracy activists and students were killed. They wanted to re-create the iconic scene of that time when a lone protester with a shopping bag faces off a Chinese tank. Mr Wei was to have played the part of the protestor but he didn’t make it in time and they had to get a stand in. But he did make it to the main memorial event across town a few days later which was closely monitored from the Chinese embassy over the road.

MAN (Translation): Are you Wei Jingsheng?

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): Yes.

MAN (Translation): You’ve suffered a lot.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): Nice to meet you. I look much better now. I’ve almost recovered.

MAN (Translation): You looked terrible when you were released.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): My face was swollen.

MAN (Translation): Your teeth were all missing.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): Yes, all my teeth fell out.

ANNOUNCER: He suffered torture, brutal physical and psychological abuse including solitary confinement and physical attack. He has been awarded the Olaf Palmer Peace Prize in 1995, the Sakarov Freedom of Thought Award in 1996 and he is a nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize. Please welcome him to the stage.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): Since the Communist Party came to power, thousands of people have been killed and thousands of people have been imprisoned.

The brutal crackdown in Tiananmen Square 19 years ago was a pivotal event in modern Chinese history – and a memory the Chinese Government tries very hard to suppress.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): Some people say that was all in the past. But I want to tell you that it’s all still happening today.

Considering how hard the embassy is trying to put good spin on the Olympic Games, they would not have been pleased to hear Mr Wei’s call to arms here today.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): Let's work together. Thank you.

Mr Wei believes that while the Chinese do not honour their promise to improve the human rights record, a precondition for holding the Games. Then world leaders like Kevin Rudd should reverse their decision to attend the opening ceremony.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): His action contradicts the Western value system. It also contradicts Mr Rudd’s own ideal when he was young. His decision is unreasonable from his personal point of view. And it’s unreasonable from a social perspective. It may be reasonable for business purposes only. I think his decision is wrong. The Beijing Olympics are like the Berlin Olympics in 1936, offering support to the Nazis and to dictatorship. And they will bring with them political consequences. The Chinese Government is using the Olympics as a political event to whitewash itself.

Much was made of Prime Minister Rudd’s raising of human rights in Beijing recently where he used a 7th century word to describe his relationship with China – Zheng You – the true friend who dares to disagree. Most analysts thought it was a brave move, Mr Wei believes the opposite.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): You can’t be a friend of Communism and the Chinese people. The Chinese Government draws a clear line between the two. The Chinese people also draw a clear line. I think he must be under great pressure from big corporations. He wanted to be a friend of China. He also wanted to tell Western people that he cared about human rights. So he put forward this puzzling and odd concept. I don’t like it myself. The Chinese people found it odd. Even the Chinese Government found it odd.

KRISTYAN BENEDICT: Can we reschedule? Great, sorry. We need to also talk about the French minister for human rights. Apparently they want to meet Mr Wei, right?

ALICE HUTCHINSON, AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL: I was just thinking he has such a busy program, they are both losing their voices. I'm shattered. Yes, I am not surprised.

Another day, another meeting. Mr Wei is being briefed by his minders about foreign office minister, Lord Malloch Brown.

ALICE HUTCHINSON: I'm hopeful that it would be quite a hopeful meeting. Mark Malloch Brown is a fairly sympathetic human rights minister. He is interested in actually understanding the issues and seeing what the UK can do about it and I think it will be a quite friendly meeting but how far he will be able to push his colleagues and other parts of government to do the things we want him to do is the challenge he faces, I think.

REPORTER: What are you hoping to get out of this meeting? Is it the same as the others? Pushing the same idea or is there a different approach to this meeting?

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): I hope something will come out of it. The British Government should work with the EU and do something. If Britain, France and other EU countries want to do something about human rights, it’s the perfect time to do it. It’s the time to take some action.

As we leave the café and Mr Wei heads off to his meeting, I’m stopped by police and questioned on suspicion of involvement in terrorism.

REPORTER: I'm just filming them.

POLICE: We believe in professional filming.

REPORTER: I just wanted to get the shot of them walking in, that’s all.

POLICE: You just wanted to get the shot of them walking in?

REPORTER: I didn't know until about 10 minutes ago what we were doing. Like I said, you don't know from one minute to the next. News reporting – you follow the news.

POLICE: If you had the press pass, it would have helped as well.

It's also difficult to get Dateline’s camera into any of the meetings Mr Wei has with British politicians, not even to get the shot of them shaking hands. He really is a political hot potato. Mr Wei says they have too much to lose in offending China by being seen meeting him.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): They have a similar dilemma to Kevin Rudd. They have to meet the needs of big corporations and they can’t offend their people.

REPORTER: When you met Kevin Rudd, it was also in secret?

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): Not when he was an MP, but I don’t know now. Back then, he didn’t need to worry too much. But now he has to consider what we just talked about. If he stresses human rights, he’ll upset Australian capitalists. If he doesn’t, he’ll upset the Australian people. I haven’t been in contact with him in this regard. Last time I was in Australia, he was rather cool towards me.

Today it is off to Cambridge University for a speech to overseas Chinese students. He begins with the disturbing trend of rising nationalism in China, which he says is supported by the Government.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): This extreme nationalism has some characteristics in common with Nazism. For example, it displays exclusionism, discriminates against dissidents and promotes violence. Like all fanatics, once they get into frenzy, they can’t hear any other voice. How far will this fanatical patriotism go? We’re worried. Many people inside the Communist Party are worried.

He then went on to talk about organ harvesting.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): In China, prisoners’ organs are forcibly removed. This has been extended to ordinary people. People are kidnapped off the street and killed for their organs. It’s a business for profit.

But when he criticised Premier Wen Jiabao and the Chinese military for getting to the recent earthquake zone too late, it was too much for some in the audience.

STUDENT: My question is whether he really knows at what exact time the Chinese troops arrived in the earthquake region.

At this point, Mr Wei got confused and contradicted himself losing the attention of many in the audience. But at the end, he still got quite an applause although mostly from the non-Chinese.

REPORTER: Any comment on that?

STUDENT 2: Very profound and very enlightening.

Then I see the student who asked the question about his facts.

REPORTER: What did you think?

STUDENT: A bit disappointing.


STUDENT: You can see from my question – it is not well evidenced – the detail is about himself not what is happening there.

REPORTER: Any comment on what you just heard?

STUDENT 3: Nonsense.

REPORTER: Nonsense, really? Can you tell me why?

STUDENT 3: Sorry I have no time.

REPORTER: I will walk with you.

STUDENT 3: He was just misleading us, misleading the foreign countries, the foreign media to get them to overturn the Chinese Government.

Other students agreed that he didn’t answer their questions. But Mr Wei dismisses the criticism.

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): It shows that those young people have long been deceived. It will take them a long time to be able to see the truth. They’ve been brainwashed by Communism.

And he alleges there were embassy officials sitting at the back of the theatre.

REPORTER: How do you know the embassy sent people?

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): The students told me. I think those students were actually quite friendly. They’ve taken in a lot of what I said. But under surveillance by embassy officials, they could only say what they said. Without the embassy officials, those young men would take me for a beer. They have more questions to ask.

REPORTER: Do you think you will ever get to go back to China?

WEI JINGSHENG (Translation): The Chinese Communist Government may not allow me to go back to China. But the Communist Government may soon be overthrown. So I’ll be able to go back soon. My hope is sooner rather than later.












Original Music Composed by


Additional footage courtesy of


Palestinian shot dead after bulldozer rampage

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Palestinian shot dead after bulldozer rampage)

A Palestinian man was shot dead after going on a bulldozer rampage in Jerusalem, wounding at least 16 people as he ploughed into cars in the second such attack this month.


Jerusalem police chief Aharon Franco said the assailant, identified as a man from occupied East Jerusalem, rammed his vehicle into a bus near the King David Hotel, failing to overturn it, but smashing its windows.

“The bulldozer then rammed five cars and damaged them. A civilian tried to stop him when a border guard arrived and neutralised him.”

The attack came on the eve of a visit by US presidential candidate Barack Obama who is to meet Israeli and Palestinian officials on Wednesday on the latest leg of a tour of the Middle East and Europe.

“I was going home when I saw the tractor going into a bus four or five times. All the windows of the bus exploded,” said Yohanan Levine, 16.

“Then I saw the tractor going down the street pushing cars. At this moment I looked (the driver) in the eye and I saw more people running, and after two minutes I heard two or three gunshots.”

White House condemns attack

The White House urged “all parties” in the Middle East to condemn the attack if Israel determines it was an act of terrorism.

“Terrorist attacks do nothing to further the goals of Israel and Palestine living side by side in peace, a goal the president has been advocating for, and that both of those countries' leaders have been working toward,” said spokeswoman Dana Perino.

Obama condemned the attack, telling reporters in neighbouring Jordan he would support Israel “in confronting terrorism and pursuing lasting peace and security.”

“Today's bulldozer attack is a reminder of what Israelis have had to courageously live with on a daily basis for far too long.”

On July 2, a Palestinian killed three people and wounded 30 others when he rammed a bulldozer into buses and cars on a busy Jerusalem street before being shot dead.

Security tightened

The King David Hotel regularly hosts the rich and famous. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown stayed there on his visit to Jerusalem earlier this week and Obama will be staying there during his trip.

“We heightened security immediately after the attack and we will heighten… until after Obama's visit,” police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said.

The attacker was named as Ghassan Abu Tir, 22, from Umm Tuba, a district of east Jerusalem, which Israel captured in the 1967 war and annexed in a move not recognised by the international community.

In the July 2 incident, the perpetrator was a 30-year-old east Jerusalem man who worked for an Israeli company at a nearby construction site.

In that case, all indications were that what Israel called a terrorist attack was a spontaneous incident carried out by a father of two with a criminal past but no known links to armed groups.

“I condemn terrorist attacks with the greatest firmness, and I hope for the quick recovery of those who were hurt,” Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas said after meeting his Israeli counterpart Shimon Peres.

Kenny Leiner, 67, a New Yorker living in Jerusalem, said he was eating at a restaurant when “we heard a boom and the waiter alerted us that it was a terrorist attack.

“I started to run after the truck. I thought maybe I could do something. I saw the driver going boom in a car, boom in a second car. Then the police started to shoot at him. I feel horrible.”

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's spokesman Mark Regev said: “This was another attempt to murder innocent people in a senseless act of terror.”

Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski said Israel should “reconsider the way in which we employ Arabs on construction sites.”

Public Security Minister Avi Dichter told public radio “it is clear that the demolition of terrorists' houses and the expulsion of terrorists … is the most effective sanction I know.”

At least 525 people have been killed since peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians resumed in November after a seven-year hiatus, mostly militants in the besieged Gaza Strip, according to a count by news agency AFP.

Fake Medicine – Africa’s Scourge

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Fake Medicine – Africa’s Scourge)



Imagine giving your seriously ill child life-saving antibiotic drugs only to see the youngster deteriorate and die and then to find out, later, that the drugs administered were fakes.


Well, for thousands of families in Nigeria that’s precisely the heartbreaking reality. However Elizabeth Tadic reports that the Nigerians, led by one dynamic and particularly outspoken doctor, are fighting back against the criminals involved in the fake drug racket.

REPORTER: Elizabeth Tadic

In the children’s emergency ward in Nigeria’s Calabar University Hospital, the doctors are fighting Africa’s biggest child-killer – malaria.

DR MARTIN MEREMIKWU, PAEDIATRICIAN: In the emergency room we have children who have been transfused yesterday, some of them have been convulsing and we’ve not had any deaths in the last 24 hours, which is strange, really, because usually a couple die each day and most of them, and this is not exaggerating, would be from malaria.

Experts believe the disease is killing between 1 million and 3 million people a year in Africa, 90% of them children under the age of 5. Yet 30 years ago, the disease had almost disappeared. So what’s causing Africa’s devastating resurgence of malaria? Dr Martin Meremikwu is one of Nigeria’s leading paediatricans. His assessment has shocked many people.

DR MARTIN MEREMIKWU: The source of the problem is fake drugs. And this is not hypothesis, this is a real-life situation – this happens every hour. In working here, the fake drugs is an issue, you know, because the parents would have given some drugs and they would have tried several things, some of which would have been ineffective because they are fake.

Dr Meremikwu is not alone in his belief that many, if not most, malaria deaths are the result of children being given useless medicines. Yet this racket in fake pharmaceuticals, has until recently has been largely ignored by governments, major drug companies and the media, at a terrible human cost.

DR DORA AKUNYILI, HEAD OF NAFDAC: We had about 80% of drugs in circulation that’s fake, people were dying like rats, out healthcare delivery system was losing credibility, our doctors were confused and it was a total disaster. The incidence of fake drugs is one of the greatest atrocities of our time – it is mass murder! Honestly, it is a form of terrorism against public health.

Dr Dora Akunyili is the head of the Nigerian Food and Drug regulation body, known as NAFDAC. This London-trained pharmacist was one of the first people to act and speak out to save patients from the hidden dangers of fake drugs.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: They hide the drugs inside various commodities. We have some T-shirts here – these are babywear – there are drugs hidden inside the babywear and we had millions of shirts with many, many billions of the drugs.

REPORTER: What kind of drugs are they?

DR DORA AKUNYILI: They had everything down to insulin, anti-snake venom, multivitamins, antibiotics.

Doctor Akunyili’s passion to stop the use of fakes is driven by personal tragedy.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: My sister was a diabetic and she was taking rubbish insulin. Her blood sugar could not be controlled. She eventually died. Even before she died she had an injection – the antibiotics she was getting were all fake and she just slowly, slowly died. That was in 1988. The doctors were all confused, we were confused. I’m a pharmacist, my husband a medical doctor, yet we were just looking at her dying.

But waging her war on the racketeers became a very dangerous business.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: The first thing the drug counterfeiter does is to have discussions on how you can work together.

REPORTER: And you couldn’t be bribed?

DR DORA AKUNYILI: Nobody can bribe me, by the grace of God. Why should anyone bribe me? You know how many millions of people have died from using fake drugs. My own sister died. That is blood money.

Unable to bribe her, the fake drug gangs tried to kill her. She was attacked in a hail of gunfire while she was on the road.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: So many assassination attempts in this country have happened in traffic jams.

A bullet pierced her headscarf, grazed her skull and eventually killed a bus driver who pushed into her convoy.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: Because the man wanted to be part of my convoy, he took the bullets.

Now she travels the busy streets of Lagos in a bulletproof car with full police escort.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: This is one of the busiest parts of Lagos, you cannot just walk here with your camera. Women are less prone to corruption than men. Even in NAFDAC, we no longer post men to some positions. Like, we no longer post men to take charge of the ports or to take charge of registration. No, we don’t do that anymore because we run into a lot of problems. I don’t believe that men being easily compromisable is an African problem because even in your country, Australia I don’t know how many men in your country can be offered millions of your currency and the man will say no, but some women will reject it, yes. Elizabeth, this is my director of enforcement. He is rare – he’s a man, but he’s not corrupt. But he’s a man. I said men are more susceptible to corruption.

NAFDAC DIRECTOR: That’s general all over the world, it’s not peculiar to Nigeria.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: Why are you more susceptible to corruption?

NAFDAC DIRECTOR: We’re more exposed than women, we have to struggle generally for the survival of the world, including women and children.

Until her arrival in 2001, NAFDAC, like many other government organisations in Nigeria, was corrupt. Drug importers simply paid a bribe to get their products on the market. But Dr Akunyili changed all that. The counterfeiters fought back hard, burning down NAFDAC labs and facilities, including these headquarters.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: Fire started at all corners at the same time. These used to be our offices. My offices were from that end to here, everything burnt down. I had lots of important documents here belonging to NAFDAC.

REPORTER: Do you know who did this?

DR DORA AKUNYILI: Of course, everybody knows, not just me, drug counterfeiters. It was syncronised bombing. In one week, many of our facilities across the country. The presiding judge released them after a year and a half, he said he had no jurisdiction to hear the case.

Despite Dr Akunyili’s campaign, there are still no severe penalties for drug counterfeiting. It’s considered nothing more than a copyright infringement.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: You see, because the laws against drug counterfeiting are weak and at the same time it is as lucrative as other criminal activities, criminals are now shifting from gun-running and carrying of cocaine, heroin and other hard drugs to counterfeiting of medicines.

It’s very hard, even for healthcare professionals, to tell the difference between genuine and fake medicines.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: This here is the original Halfan tablet and this is the fake ones. If you look at the packaging closely you can hardly tell the difference.

While the outside packaging can be a perfect copy, the tablets are often no more than chalk or rice starch. Life-saving vaccines and syrups are nothing but polluted water.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: Another fake product, it is manufactured in China. It is chloroquin injections.

MC: The special guest of honour and chairperson for this morning’s program. The only man of the year anywhere in the world who is a female.

Dr Dora, as she is known to millions of Nigerians, is now a national hero.

MC: Nigerians were asked to name four people who could lead Nigeria after OBJ and she came up very prominently as one, so those of us in NAFDAC, we have to encourage her.

She set about cleaning up corruption and issuing vital public warnings to Nigerians about which drugs to avoid.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: It has been causing havoc, killing people, maiming people, we continued using it out of ignorance.

Later that day, Dr Dora’s NAFDAC enforcement officers scour the streets of Lagos on the look-out for hawkers selling fakes.

NAFDAC DIRECTOR: Many of the people we are likely to catch now do not know that NAFDAC enforcement officers don’t have any hours of work, we can work at any time.

They’re heading to one of the city’s most popular beaches.

NAFDAC DIRECTOR: OK. There’s one, there’s one!

The officers swoop on this man. He’s selling a range of counterfeit medicines from multivitamins to antibiotics.

NAFDAC DIRECTOR: We are trying to see if we can catch them relaxing and selling to beach users. OK, from our surveillance, many of the hawkers retire here in the evening hours to be patronised by the users of the beach. So we hope to catch more of them.

After the sun goes down, they raid a nearby market. Under the cover of night, the hawkers are more confident selling fakes.

OFFICER (Translation): Do you know you’re doing wrong? Do you know what you’re hawking is fake?

HAWKER (Translation): Please have mercy.

OFFICER: We’re not catching these people because we don’t like their faces.

In less than an hour, the NAFDAC officers make another three arrests.

OFFICER: Put him into the vehicle.

They’re taken back to the NAFDAC headquarters for interrogation.

OFFICER: Why are you selling fake drugs and they harm people? Would you like to be harmed yourself?

HAWKER: They are not fake, sir.

OFFICER: Where did you buy them from? But why are you doing it?

HAWKER: For our children. I need to prop up their condition. I don’t know what I would do, else.

OFFICER: You want to kill people?

HAWKER: Only yesterday I started.

OFFICER: You had opportunity to do legitimate business, but it’s greed and avarice that is pushing you to sell fake drugs to kill people. Am I correct?

The NAFDAC team has a hard time getting any information out of these small-time crims. The racket is now a vast global black market worth about $40 billion a year. According to the WHO, around 10% of all the world’s medicines are now counterfeit. Yet as the deadly trade grows, so too does the secrecy that surrounds the business.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: It is hard to speak out about counterfeit drugs without affecting legitimate business, that is the reason for the silence. And it is this silence that is largely encouraging drug counterfeiting.

Dr Dora was part of an Oxford University investigation into the fake drug cover-up. She published her results in an influential US science journal. The results were staggering. It was claimed that pharmaceutical companies and governments did not want to go public with the fake drug issue for fear of hurting profits.

JOURNAL READING: “…the justification for secrecy is to avoid any alarm that could prevent patients taking their genuine medicines….this secrecy, and the subsequent lack of public health warnings, is harming patients.”

REPORTER: So all these deaths that have occurred from fake drugs could have been prevented had government and companies

DR DORA AKUNYILI: Cooperated. All these deaths from fake drugs would have been prevented if governments came out to fight it the way the Nigerian Government is fighting now and if companies also came out to collaborate with government it would have been stopped a long time ago and it wouldn’t have lasted for almost 30 years. That’s ridiculous, almost 30 years. In Nigeria, fake drugs have been killing people from the early ’70s.

The fake drug racket has been hidden for decades. But it was first highlighted in this 1940s film classic, ‘The Third Man’. Orson Welles played racketeer Harry Lime, selling deadly penicillin in the back streets of Vienna.

‘THE THIRD MAN’ FILM EXCERPT – JOSEPH COTTON: Have you ever seen any of your victims?

ORSON WELLES: You know, I never feel comfortable in these sort of things. Victims? Don’t be melodramatic. Look down there. Would you really feel any pity if one of those dots stopped moving forever? If I offered you can have £20,000 for every dot that stopped, would you really, old man, tell me to keep my money, or would you calculate how many dots you could afford to spend, free of income tax, old man, free of income tax.

After a long silence, drug companies are finally beginning to speak out about this deadly racket.

REPORTER: In the past, drug companies have been very secretive about this problem. Could you tell me why?

COLIN CUMMINS, SWISS PHARMA NIGERIA MANAGING DIRECTOR: I think that’s obvious, the reason it’s secretive is that you don’t want to tell people that there’s a product out there that looks like your product but is not your product. You have to balance the publicity of a product being faked and the damage that it can do to your product. Obviously, in the past a lot of big companies wouldn’t say anything about it because they didn’t want their original product to be damaged by a fake, if it was that close.

REPORTER: But then the consequences of these fake drugs have been many deaths?

COLIN CUMMINS: I don’t know how you would equate that, I have no idea on figures.

REPORTER: Because of fake drugs there’s been a resurgence of malaria over the years.

COLIN CUMMINS: That one I don’t know, I don’t think that is really the case. I don’t know if the fake drugs has caused that, or whether it’s the malaria parasite that’s mutating and getting used to the products that are there.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: The fake drug racket and the silence associated with it have led to the resurgence of malaria especially chloroquim-resistant malaria, which is a greater problem now than malaria itself.

REPORTER: Why’s that?

DR DORA AKUNYILI: Chloroquin-resistant – that is, malaria that is now resistant to a normal dose of chloroquin, because the malaria parasite had been kind of trained with small small doses of chloroquin previously taken by malaria patients. When you take small doses of chloroquin or antibiotics what you are actually doing is training the micro-organism to get used to the chemical. The chemical eventually becomes food for the micro-organism, so that when you now have the right dose of chloroquin the malaria will no longer respond, that is the problem now.

DR MARTIN MEREMIKWU: When we lost chloroquim, we also lost millions of lives with chloroquim because the drugs don’t work then the children are going to die from it.

In Swiss Pharma’s high-tech plant, legitimate anti-malarials are being produced. But a series of malarial drugs have failed due to resistance. According to the World Health Organisation, Africa’s last hope, a new anti-malarial drug called artesunate, is already showing signs of premature resistance. The WHO has warned that without an effective treatment Africa’s 500 million malaria sufferers face a disaster. But it will take 10 years to develop a new drug if artesunate fails. Public attention is, at last, being drawn to Africa’s malaria victims.

Microsoft billionaire Bill Gates has spent hundreds of millions of dollars in developing new anti-malarial drugs.

BILL GATES: That can reduce the burden of malaria quite significantly.

Gates says it’s a disgrace that the world ignored malaria for 20 years. Yet in all the publicity surrounding Gates’ investment in new drugs, there’s no mention of the role of fakes. And Dr Dora says it’s not worth developing new malaria drugs until the racket is properly addressed.

DR DORA AKUNYILI: All those drugs will not help us because the counterfeiters are always moving to be ahead of us. They will go and produce fake artesunate and fake whatever higher drugs we want to replace chloroquin with and the problem will be worse. When we get artesunate-resistant malaria, where do we go from there?

Today, Dr Dora’s NAFDAC team is continuing its war on fakes. They’re about to burn $2.5 million worth of counterfeit medicine.

NAFDAC DIRECTOR: They’re made up of products seized during enforcement activities.

A public display with the local media invited to help sell the message. But even here, the problem won’t go away. A gang of thieves has apparently sneaked in the night before to try and pilfer the stockpile.

MAN: These useless people.

REPORTER: Do you realize fake drugs kill people?

THIEF: I’m not a dealer of drugs.

NAFDAC DIRECTOR: These are fast-moving products that they targeted and were removing. For them to target fast-moving products means they’re conversant with this business.

THIEF: All of them have run away.

NAFDAC DIRECTOR: That means there are many of you! Make us a statement, you link all the people who can be linked because all the people who are going to interview you are experienced police investiigators.

THIEF: Help us, we are human beings, I have never sinned in my lifetime. I am doing this to earn my daily bread.

These thieves are just small fry. Catching the producers requires full cooperation from governments and companies around the world. With the problem ignored for so long, how many more years and how many more lives will be lost, before real action is taken?

Lockerbie bomber allowed to drop appeal

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Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali Mohmet al-Megrahi has formally dropped his appeal against conviction, paving the way for his transfer home to Libya.


Al-Megrahi is the only person to be convicted of murdering 270 people when Pan Am Flight 103 was blown out of the skies over the Scottish town of Lockerbie in 1988.

He was jailed for at least 27 years, and launched a second appeal against his conviction in April after losing an earlier appeal in 2002.

But the 57-year-old is now seeking release from prison on humanitarian grounds, because he is suffering from prostate cancer.

Following the Edinburgh court’s ruling on Tuesday, Scottish Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill will now have to decide whether to allow Megrahi to return home to die.

Transfer to Libyan jail

The minister is mulling two options: either to let the former Libyan agent transfer from a Scottish jail to a Libyan prison – a process which can only go ahead once his appeal is dropped – or to release him on compassionate grounds.

Media reports have suggested Megrahi would be released this week, in time for the start of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.

But on Monday, the Times newspaper said the Scottish government appeared to have buckled under pressure from Washington and abandoned plans to release him immediately.

The United States has made it clear it wants Megrahi to stay behind bars until he dies; reports have indicated he may only have a few months to live.

At the same time Libya – whose ties with the West have thawed since it renounced weapons of mass destruction in 2003 and agreed to compensate the Lockerbie victims’ relatives – has warned of serious economic fallout if he is not released.

Libya has the largest proven oil reserves of any African country, much of it still untapped, and British firms including BP and Shell have signed major exploration deals there in recent years, which could in theory be under threat.

Wednesday April 18, 6pm

January 12th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Wednesday April 18, 6pm)

GEORGE’S FURY: In March this year cyclone George hit Western Australia’s Pilbara coast.


The category-4 cyclone killed three people, injured at least twenty more and devastated the Aboriginal communities east of Port Hedland, completely wrecking many homes and cutting off water and electricity.

Residents of those communities had no choice but to move to Port Hedland, a mining town that’s already suffering a housing shortage due to the current resources boom. In many cases, Aboriginal people have had to move into the already-overcrowded homes of family and friends, while they await the rebuilding of their community.

But rebuilding is a slow process, taking 4 – 6 months at least and in one instance, as many as 50 people are living in the one South Headland house, waiting to be told they can go back home.

Join Living Black’s Emma Cook as she travels to Port Hedland and the outlying Aboriginal communities, to see devastation the George has wrought and the continuing heartache as families live in limbo.

BOWRAVILLE MURDERS: Seventeen years ago, three Aboriginal children disappeared from the New South Wales town of Bowraville. The bodies of 4 year old Evelyn Greenup and 16 year old Clinton Speedy-Duroux were found several months later. The body of 16 year old Colleen Walker has never been found.

Recently, NSW Police increased the reward money for any information that will help them solve the murders. Living Black’s Kris Flanders speaks to members of all three families, to find out how they’re coping with the loss of their loved ones, while host Karla Grant interviews Detective Inspector Gary Jubelin, who’s been working on the case for more than a decade.

LISA FLANAGAN PROFILE: Lisa Flanagan is an emerging 28 year old actress standing up for her people with determination and passion. Hailing from Adelaide, she won a best supporting actress nomination from the Film Critics Circle for her role in the film Look Both Ways. Lisa is currently performing in Company B’s production of Parramatta Girls in Sydney. She talks to Living Black’s Jacinta Isaacs about growing up and working with Leah Purcell, along with her future plans.

Living Black is repeated on Mondays at 5.30pm and Fridays at 3.30pm

No one to blame for Beaconsfield death

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No one is to blame for the death of miner Larry Knight in the Beaconsfield disaster, coroner Rod Chandler says.


“The evidence does not permit me to make a positive finding that any person, corporation or other entity, by their conduct, directly contributed to Mr Knight\’s death,” Mr Chandler told a court in Launceston on Thursday.

Mr Chandler found the mine should have been aware that its ground support system in place at the time of the fatal rock fall was unsuitable after two earlier rock falls in October 2005.

He also said the mine\’s risk assessment process following the October rock falls – and that led to the recommencement of mining – was deficient.

“The risk assessment process was particularly deficient in that it failed to ensure that a comprehensive and independent reassessment of the ground support system was undertaken,” Mr Chandler told the court.

Risk assessment

“… (However) I am unable to positively find that Mr Knight\’s death would have been avoided if (the mine) had undertaken a thorough and systematic risk assessment following the October falls of ground.

“Nevertheless, it is my view that the likelihood of Mr Knight\’s death occurring would have been reduced, perhaps significantly if (the mine) had undertaken such an assessment.

“This is particularly so because a thorough and systematic risk assessment would have, in all likelihood, identified the inadequacy of the ground support and led, either to a variation to that system or to the mining method being changed before mining resumed.

“A lesson to be learned from Mr Knight\’s tragic death is the critical importance of proper risk management practises to worker safety, particularly in the mining industry.”

Bhutto killing sparks riots

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“The death toll in the unrest after Bhutto's death is 10, mostly in Sindh province,” Interior Ministry spokesman Javed Cheema told news agency AFP.


He said dozens of people had been wounded in the violence, which hit several cities across the country as buildings and cars were torched.

Volatile situation

Two people were shot dead in rioting in the eastern city of Lahore and four others were killed in the southern province of Sindh, Bhutto's birthplace and stronghold, police said. Another four were killed in Karachi.

Sporadic gunfire could be heard echoing around the streets of Lahore where shops and vehicles could be seen on fire.

The markets and shops immediately closed down as paramilitary patrols roamed the streets in an attempt to keep a lid on the violence, a local police officer told AFP.

In the southern metropolis of Karachi police said at least 70 vehicles were burnt by protesters, including 35 trucks filled with wheat. All petrol pumps were immediately closed as knots of protesters blocked many roads.

Witnesses said that as news spread of Bhutto's assassination in a suicide attack, the streets of Karachi were clogged with traffic as panicked people tried to rush home.

The mood was tense in Bhutto's home town of Larkana where two banks were set on fire, witnesses said.

In Peshawar in the northwest police used tear gas and batons to break up angry crowds; and in the central city of Multan some protesters fired shots into the air and many shouted slogans including “Musharraf is a dog” and “Long live Bhutto”.

As angry Bhutto supporters looked for a scapegoat for her death, residents in the Sindh town of Jacobabad said shops belonging to the family of interim Prime Minister Mohammedmian Soomro were burned down.

Portraits of Soomro were set on fire while demonstrators took to the streets, blocking roads and a railway track. The main court, banks and other buildings were also set on fire, an AFP reporter said.

Fearing renewed violence in the northwestern valley of Swat, which has been troubled by months of religious militancy, officials clamped a curfew on the picturesque region, a local official told reporters.

Naked against climate change

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The environmental group Greenpeace, which commissioned the photoshoot by photographer Spencer Tunick, said the volunteers turned up under blue skies near the foot of the Aletsch glacier, a protected UNESCO World Heritage site.


"Their numbers are close to 600," Nicolas de Roten of Greenpeace Switzerland said.

“It's relatively chilly but that doesn't seem to be disturbing them," he added.

The campaign is aimed at drawing attention to melting Alpine glaciers, one clear sign of global warming and of man-made climate change, according to the group.

Greenpeace says the human body is as vulnerable as glaciers like the Aletsch in southern Switzerland and the world's environment.

The glacier itself is now shrinking by about 100 metres a year.

The group hopes its billboard and poster campaign showing people exposed to the cold will send a shiver down the spines of public opinion and politicians, and convince them to do more to tackle pollution and climate change.

"They'll be used at the right moment for our campaign, in Switzerland first and then worldwide," de Roten said from the location, about an hour's hike from the village of Bettmeralp.

Tunick split the men and women into two groups of about 300 for separate shots on or around the lower end of the spectacular 23 kilometre long sweeping ice floe, at an altitude of about 2,300 metres.

Dressed in hiking gear, they stripped for minutes at a time, watched at a distance by clump of media photographers and journalists.

If cooler than summer down in the valley, temperatures were well above freezing – about 10 to 15 degrees Celsius – unlike the riskier snowbound section higher up in the mountains.

'Living sculptures'

The US-born photographer is renowned for his spectacular art photos of hundreds if not thousands of naked people grouped in carefully chosen poses around landmarks.

Tunick calls them "living sculptures" or "body landscapes" and he nowadays works mainly to order for contemporary art galleries.

About 18,000 nudes posed for the US-born photographer in Mexico City's Zocalo Square in May.

Other backdrops have included the Gateshead Centre for Contemporary Art in England (2005), the Biennale in Lyon, France (2005), and Grand Central Station in New York (2003).

Volunteers for the Swiss photoshoot were asked to turn up by train and cable car, to avoid generating carbon dioxide emissions that contribute to global warming.

Bettmeralp's mayor, Heidi Kreuzer, was unimpressed by the fuss.

"There's no need to get undressed, I can show you very nice pictures of the glacier," she told the Swiss newspaper Le Matin.

Environmental issues have considerable resonance in mountainous Switzerland, which has been hit by a growing number of damaging flash floods and landslides in recent years due to stronger storms and rainfall, as well as heatwaves.

Temperatures rising

A Swiss government report this week underlined that temperatures were rising faster than the global average, and measures needed to tackle the impact of global warming would cost the country about one billion Swiss francs ($A1.05 billion) a year.

The country's 1,800 glaciers are regarded as a visible barometer of global warming.

The Aletsch alone shrunk by 114.6 metres in the year in 2005-2006, according to scientists at Zurich's Federal Polytechnic (ETHZ).

Their data also shows that all Switzerland's main glaciers are retreating and the melting has accelerated since the mid-1990s.

Greenpeace wants to to use the campaign during Swiss general elections in October, to press for tougher action to cut emissions than the government's planned carbon tax, de Roten said.

Outrage after man is shocked to death

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A video of the incident has been released, which shows Robert Dziekanski dying while being restrained with a Taser by police, igniting a diplomatic protest and controversy over the use of stun guns.


Canada's public safety minister ordered a review of the devices one day after the release of the tourist's video.

The 40-year-old immigrant died on October 14 about 10 hours after he arrived at western Canada's biggest airport.

Mr Dziekanski died after a bizarre series of events that culminated in police approaching him and, in less than one minute, zapping him repeatedly with a Taser stun gun.

“I was quite shocked,” Piotr Ogrodzinski, said the Polish ambassador to Canada, after viewing the video.

“Perhaps (the) police officers' reaction was not suitable to the circumstances.”

Mr Ogrodzinski said he formally requested details from Canada of the investigation into Mr Dziekanski's death, and also met with the national police complaints commissioner.

The video was taken by Paul Pritchard, a Canadian traveler at the scene.

It was not released for one month because police held onto it until Mr Pritchard filed a court action to have it returned.

What the video shows

The video shows Mr Dziekanski, appearing distraught and frightened, moving around furniture in the airport and at one point throwing a computer off a desk onto the ground.

He is watched by security guards who stand back and can be heard saying, “he's speaking Russian.”

Then four officers from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Canada's national police force, enter the frame.

They walk toward Mr Dziekanski and surround him.

He turns away from them, raising his hands with his back to them.

In one hand he holds what looks like a stapler.

The police close in on Mr Dziekanski and stun him repeatedly with a Taser device.

Mr Dziekanski screams and writhes on the floor, and the policemen pile on top of him and pin him down.

Within minutes he falls still.

RCMP spokesman Corporal Dale Carr said an investigation by a homicide team will take another 30 to 45 days.

He urged the public to withhold their judgment of what they see on the video until the police can explain their conduct while testifying under oath at a coroner's inquest.

“The inquest will be the venue in which the contents of the video and the actions of police will be scrutinised,” Mr Carr said in a statement.

A preliminary coroner's report earlier showed there were no drugs or alcohol in Mr Dziekanski's body, and that the cause of death was uncertain.

Shortly after calls by the opposition parties for a review of the stun weapons, Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day told the House of Commons he had ordered “a review related to the use of Tasers.”

Public outrage

In British Columbia province, others demanded that a special prosecutor be appointed to examine the police actions.

Meanwhile, thousands of people across Canada phoned radio talk shows or posted comments on media websites, most expressing anger.

“I am so ashamed as a Canadian,” wrote Joey Tavares from Toronto on the daily Globe and Mail's site, in one typical post.

“I feel so sorry for the Dziekanski family.

“I cannot believe that this happened.”

Mr Dziekanski had travelled from Pieszyce, Poland, to Canada to live with his mother, said a family lawyer, who noted Mr Dziekanski spoke only Polish, and had never before wandered far from Pieszyce.

Due to a mix-up at the airport, he had waited for his mother for almost 10 hours in the secure customs area, while she waited for him in the arrivals area on the other side of a wall.

After unsuccessfully asking airport and immigration staff for help finding out if her son had arrived, she left.

No one at the airport seemed to have noticed Mr Dziekanski waiting for hours in the secure area.

Ash blankets Indonesian town

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Ash fell on the town of Blitar in East Java, which is located outside a 10-kilometre danger zone around the peak of Mount Kelut, but officials say it came from a second volcano further away from the town.


Residents initially feared the worst when the ash drifted over the town, Blitar district spokesman Sukamtono said.

“We have checked with the volcano monitoring team, and they say that the ash does not come from Kelut, but from Semeru,” he said, referring to another volcano about 90 kilometres away.

Semeru has been spewing ash on and off for months and scientists say that the volcano's activities were still considered normal and not dangerous.

Eruption brewing

Meanwhile scientists said they were baffled by the behaviour of Kelut, with the energy surging inside it surpassing that of its last eruption, in 1990.

Scientists abandoned their monitoring posts on Kelut's slopes on Saturday when tremors became so strong they could no longer be measured.

They could not see the peak through heavy cloud but said they believed it was erupting.

However they later found that it had not.

Volcanologist Agus Budianto said that pressure inside Kelut was three to four times as strong as that which caused the last eruption, which killed 34 people.

That eruption created a blockage that magma has not been able to fully break through, lifting only some volcanic material under the crater lake and resulting in a column of steam rising from its surface, he said.

“All indications point to an eruption, but the fact is, there has so far been only a partial lifting of the lava dome at the top, as well as a strong drift of heated winds upwards,” Mr Budianto said.

The lifting of a portion of the crater to the south-southwest – the direction evacuation efforts have focused on — has resulted in water mixed with volcanic material gushing down the usually dry Bladak river bed.

Cracks resulting from the crust movements were providing an escape route for magmatic gases, he said, gradually reducing the pressure inside – and meaning that it was possible no eruption would occur.

Underground tremors however were ongoing, he said, while the temperature of the crater lake has soared to 77.5 degrees Centigrade, compared to 40 degrees when it erupted in 1990.

“This is something entirely new for Kelut,” Budianto said.

A group of journalists who sneaked to the edge of the crater on Monday said that the lake had turned whitish and bubbles were forming every two minutes or so on its surface. A strong sulfuric odour also permeated the peak, though birds remained in the area, they said.

Authorities sealed off the mountain and tried to evacuate all 130,000 people living in the danger zone since it was put on high alert on October 16.

Many however have either refused to leave or returned to their homes and fields during the day to work.

Since records Mount Kelut has claimed more than 15,000 lives, including an estimated 10,000 in a catastrophic 1586 eruption. A 1919 eruption spewed heat clouds that killed 5,160 people.

Indonesia sits on the so-called Pacific “Ring of Fire” where several continental plates collide, causing frequent seismic and volcanic activity.