Should Britain be paying for its crimes of empire?-Africa Today-05-01-2012

 

The real cost to human lives on the African continent had been covered and some of the atrocious crimes committed by colonialist had been destroyed until now. There were speculations of what had taken place by what truly happened has now been uncovered. Some had been left for reinterpretation of what empire did in Africa but the true story of what happened is now being unveiled due to the legal action brought against the British government by Kenya’s Mau Mau tribe. Thousands of documents detailing some of the most shameful acts and crimes committed during the final years of the British empire were systematically destroyed to prevent them falling into the hands of post-independence governments, an official review has concluded. Those papers that survived the purge were flown discreetly to Britain where they were hidden for 50 years in a secret Foreign Office archive, beyond the reach of historians and members of the public, and in breach of legal obligations for them to be transferred into the public domain.

The archive came to light last year when a group of Kenyans detained and allegedly tortured during the Mau Mau rebellion won the right to sue the British government. The Foreign Office promised to release the 8,800 files from 37 former colonies held at the highly-secure government communications centre at Hanslope Park in Buckinghamshire. Among the documents that appear to have been destroyed were: records of the abuse of Mau Mau insurgents detained by British colonial authorities, who were tortured and sometimes murdered; reports that may have detailed the alleged massacre of 24 unarmed villagers in Malaya by soldiers of the Scots Guards in 1948. Most of the sensitive documents kept by colonial authorities in Aden, where the army’s Intelligence Corps operated a secret torture centre for several years in the 1960s; and every sensitive document kept by the authorities in British Guiana, a colony whose policies were heavily influenced by successive US governments and whose post-independence leader was toppled in a coup orchestrated by the CIA.

Germany is the second European country to ban Press TV

Britain strip Press TV of their license. Germany is now censoring and banning Press TV

 

 

 

Post-democracy: Press TV banned in Germany

Voltaire Network | 6 April 2012

It was through a simple email sent to the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) officials that the Media Regulatory Office (MHA) based in Munich notified of the decision to remove the Iranian English-speaking channel Press TV from German airwaves.

The authority has claimed that Iran’s English-speaking channel does not have a license for broadcast in Europe.

This shutdown comes after Press TV was banned in Great Britain in January 2012 by Ofcom, the government-approved media regulatory authority. [1]

On its part, the channel believes the decision is part of a strategy by Westerners to silence an inconvenient voice.

Press TV drew the attention of the UK public in particular for its coverage of the Occupy protest movement in the United States and Britain, as well as for offering viewers a different perspective on the offensive launched against Libya or Syria.

Voltaire Network recalls that freedom of expression is a prerequisite for any democracy. It can only be restricted by law. Now, in this case, censorship does not stem from a court ruling following the commission of crimes or offenses, but from a simple administrative decision of an obvious political nature.

The Lebanese news channel Al-Manar was taken off the air in a similar manner, first in France, then in all Western states [2] At the time, Al-Manar had been accused of broadcasting an anti-Semitic program, but the examining magistrate never succeeded in establishing the charge and the case was not pursued. Ultimately, it was the Conseil d’Etat (i.e. the administrative court, not criminal court) which banned the channel alleging reasons of public order disturbances in connection with the controversy sparked by the accusation of antisemitism, in spite of the fact that it could never be substantiated.

Successive administrative bans in Europe, over the last six years, of Lebanese, Palestinian, Libyan, Syrian and Iranian news channels illustrate the inability of the European Union to address the issue other than to resort to censorship and propaganda and by forsaking the most basic principles of democracy.

Such administrative bans slammed on Middle East television channels clearly aim to prevent EU citizens from gaining a different perspective on the conflicts in this region, even though wars are being contemplated in which Europeans would be brought in. In this sense, such measures are in breach of resolutions 381 [3] and 819 [4] of the United Nations General Assembly, which make it mandatory for Member States to “remove barriers that prevent peoples the free exchange of information and of ideas essential to understanding and international peace. ”

Link to Press TV article

Under pressure from the German government, Munich media regulatory office (BLM) has made an illegal decision to remove Iran’s international English Channel, Press TV, from SES Astra at 19:00 local time on Tuesday.

In an email sent to the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) officials, Vice President of the SES Platforms Services, Stephane Goebel, noted that the BLM has asked Press TV be immediately removed from the platform.

The authority has claimed that Iran’s English-speaking channel does not have a license for broadcast in Europe.

“BLM has…sent us an official request to immediately seize the service of the above-mentioned channel [Press TV],” Goebel noted.

Regretting the decision, Goebel added that his company “will be no longer able to keep the Press TV signal on air and will need to shut down the service without further notice.”

The move is clearly part of a plot orchestrated by the West to silence the voice of the Iranian English-language channel.

SS/AZ/IS

UK threatens to confiscate Press TV property in London

Censorship Britain continuing their attack on Press TV. while the racist fox news channel is still allowed to broadcast their racism and incitement of hate in the U.K

link to press tv article

Two months after revoking Press TV’s license in the UK, the British government’s media tool, Ofcom, has forced the channel to pay a 100,000-pound fine, threatening to confiscate Press TV Ltd.’s properties in London, if it does not make the payment.

Ofcom has also threatened to wind up Press TV’s offices in London upon a seven-day delay in paying the installments. This comes despite Britain’s illegal financial sanctions against Iranian banks. The sanctions are not mandated by the UN and are against international law.

Moreover, Britain has used the illegal sanctions to also close several Press TV bank accounts in the UK. Britain’s so-called media regulatory body Ofcom says the channel has been fined for airing a 10-second news clip of now fugitive Iranian journalist, Maziar Bahari.

On July 1, 2009, Press TV reported on an armed attack on a Basij base in the Iranian capital. The report included a 10-second clip of an interview conducted with Iranian-born Canadian journalist Maziar Bahari while he was in prison.

Bahari said in the interview that “on Monday, June 15, [2009], I sent a report about the attack against the base, a military base of Basij to Channel 4 News.”

Major state-sponsored British media outlets such as the British Broadcasting Corporations (BBC) and Channel 4 had aired the manipulated footage that showed what appeared to be an incident of unrest near Tehran’s Azadi Square, during which a number of Basij forces were shown shooting at what was claimed by the British media to be ‘peaceful protesters’ although it was evidently not clear who and what the targets were.

Press TV later aired a more detailed version of the same report that clearly showed images of rioters attacking a Basij military base with stones and petrol bombs, while the guards were making great efforts to defuse the situation and prevent assailants from accessing the base’s arms cache.

The extended video clearly showed that the earlier reporting of the state-run BBC and Channel 4 had been biased and distorted as they deliberately failed to show attacks by rioters on the military base which prompted the guards at the military base to react.

Bahari was released on bail on October 20, 2009 and fled the country. He later claimed that Press TV conducted and filmed the interview in prison without his consent and that his participation in the interview was under duress. He later launched a complaint against the Iranian broadcaster.

Mr. Bahari did not file his complaint until December 21, 2009, some 166 days after the broadcast. This was in violation of Ofcom’s complaints procedure requiring all complaints “be submitted within 20 working days of the broadcast of the program.”

Ofcom accepted the complaint and ruled that the airing of the clip by the Iranian broadcaster breached the regulator’s rules.

In January, Ofcom revoked Press TV Ltd’s license citing administrative reasons for the largely-criticized decision. Ofcom said Press TV Limited did not control the channel’s broadcast in the UK and that is why its license was revoked.

Press TV argued in a letter to Ofcom that if the channel’s London offices did not control the broadcast, why were they fined and if they controlled the broadcast, why was the license revoked. Ofcom never replied to Press TV’s letter, and instead took the channel of the air.

Press TV has been regarded as a critical voice in the UK. Its coverage of the extravagant Royal wedding, the 2011 unrest and London’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan drew anger from the British government.

Wikileaks cables show British Foreign Office officials and US diplomats have discussed ways of limiting Press TV’s media activities.

SS/AZ/HGH