Old age, hate speech, press freedom: Critical issues in Nigeria’s 2019 presidential election

Voting in progress during Nigeria's presidential election on March 28, 2015, in Abuja, Nigeria. Photo by U.S. Embassy/Idika Onyukwu. Image Attribution: Non-Commercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Nigeria will hold a presidential election on February 16, 2019, and all eyes are on this election as a test to prove the strength of Nigeria's democratic norms, values and unity.

This year, there are five main candidates in the race out of 73 total presidential candidates. Two major contenders include the incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari (All Progressive Congress) and the opposition candidate and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar (Peoples Democratic Party).

The other three candidates, Obiageli Ezekwesili, Kingsley Moghalu and Omoyole Sowore, have been termed the “third force” because they lack political experience but still present significant competition.

Amid the cacophony of electoral campaigns and the attendant passion from supporters — both online and offline — here are the key issues that may get lost in the noise.

Related: Meet Nigeria's presidential candidates of 2019

Old and the strongman syndrome

Nigeria's two major contenders, Buhari, 76, and Atiku, 72, both have long histories of political engagement in Nigeria, leaving many to question their health and longevity as presidential hopefuls.

With the end of longtime rulers like South African President Jacob Zuma, 76, and Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe, 94, who was forced out of power after 37 years as president, it has felt like an end to regimes led by the old and strong men in Africa. But this hope has not lasted. Paul Biya, 84, was re-elected as president of Cameroon, making him the oldest political leader in sub-Saharan Africa.

The health of Nigeria’s leaders became a major political consideration after late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua died in office on May 5, 2010. Yar’Adua's illness and continued absence created a power vacuum because he did not hand it over to his deputy, Goodluck Jonathan, before he traveled abroad for treatment.

Incumbent President Buhari has made about ten trips to the United Kingdom for medical treatment of an undisclosed ailment. He has spent “more than 170 days in London on official medical leave since becoming president in 2015,” according to the New York Times.

Can younger candidates stand a better chance? This year, there are 10 candidates under the age of 40 and 16 candidates between the ages of 45-49. But younger candidates may not fare well because Nigeria’s long history of military rule has embedded a culture of political actors who have both the clout and wealth to fund party politics and this takes time and connections to cultivate.

Buhari and Abubakar both have strong political bases. Buhari has a loyal following in the northern part of the country, while Abubakar is perceived as widely accepted across different tribes and religions in the country. Their ages do not appear to be a factor in garnering support and loyalty.

Ethnicity and religion

Nigeria is what's known as an ethnic fault line state — ethnicity and religion have long played a central role in elections and general politics. The 2015 elections showed that the two “major contestants received bloc votes from their various states and geopolitical zones,” according to an article in the Journal of African Elections. Also, ethnic sentiments were used to appeal to voters. Ethnocentric hate speech surged both online and offline, before and after the 2015 presidential elections.

Similarly, in 2017, some Nigerian writers raised alarm over the vile ethnic hate speech that almost consumed the nation. Former President Goodluck Jonathan lost favor in polls over his handling of the Boko Haram militant insurgency that rattled the nation. The abduction of schoolgirls in Chibok led to a global outcry of #BringBackOurGirls.

Buhari and Abubakar will both rely on ethnic alliances to win votes. Buhari, a northerner (Fulani/Muslim), has retained Yemi Osibanjo as his vice-presidential candidate in order to garner votes from the southwestern (Yoruba/Christian) part of the country. Abubakar, a northerner (Fulani/Muslim) has picked his vice-presidential candidate from the southeastern (Igbo/Christian) part of the country.

Because Buhari and Abubakar are from the same ethnoreligious group, tensions may not be as high as they were in 2015 elections when Jonathan Goodluck, a southern minority Ijaw Christian, ran against Buhari.

Free speech and press freedom

Buhari's administration has been accused of major human rights violations and many hashtags have trended on social media in 2018 calling for the release of detained netizens and journalists.

On March 17, 2016, Nigerian journalist Yomi Olomofe was brutally assaulted and detained by Nigerian police in an attack against free speech. Nigerian journalist Daniel Elombah and his brother, Timothy Elombah, were arrested on New Year's Day 2017 for a story they did not even write. In August that year, Nigerian trader Joe Fortemose Chinakwe was arrested by for naming his pet dog “Buhari”.

Jones Abiri, publisher of Weekly Source, was arrested on July 21, 2016, by state security (DSS) agents at his office in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State. #FreeJonesAbiri trended for several days on Twitter until Abiri was released on August 15, 2018, after a two-year detention.

#FreeSamuelOgundipe trended when Nigerian journalist Samuel Ogundipe was detained for three days by Nigeria’s Special Tactical Squad after refusing to name his sources for a story concerning the forceful prevention of lawmakers by security agents from entering the Nigerian National Assembly in early August 2018.

Deji Adeyanju, a political activist and member of the opposition party, was re-arrested in December 2018 and has been in detention since then due to “a fresh petition.”

Buhari has openly expressed his aversion to a free press and freedom of speech. In an address to lawyers last year, he stated that “the rule of law must be subject to the supremacy of the nation’s security and national interest.”

On the other hand, Abubakar has promised to run “an inclusive governance structure” that will harness Nigeria's diversity and uphold “a just and fair environment where the rights of all citizens are protected by a transparent government.”

Only time will tell how these issues will unfold throughout the election period and beyond.

Written by Nwachukwu Egbunike, Eta Uso · comments (0)
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‘Nobody knows what will come next’: Venezuelans rally in strongest challenge to Maduro yet

Juan Guaidó, the president of the National Assembly, as he swore himself in as the acting president of Venezuela at a protest in Caracas on January 23, 2018. Photo by Efecto Cucuyo, used with permission.

Every January 23, Venezuela marks the anniversary of the coup d’état that ended Marcos Pérez Jiménez's military regime in 1958, in what is commonly known as “the return to democracy”. Sixty-one years later, thousands of Venezuelans who oppose the government of Nicolás Maduro are taking to the streets hoping the winds will blow the same way.

As we write this story, people are gathering in large numbers in major cities like Maracaibo, Barquisimeto, and the capital Caracas, as well as smaller towns. The rallies were called by Juan Guaidó, the new president of the country's opposition-controlled National Assembly, who earlier this month publicly denounced Maduro's legitimacy and proposed to invoke an article of the 1999 constitution that would install a transitional government with Guaidó as president.

Speaking at a protest in Caracas this afternoon, Guaidó swore himself in as the acting president of Venezuela. Soon thereafter, the United States’ president Donald Trump publicly recognized Guaidó as the country's legitimate ruler, with most governments in the region — such as Canada, Argentina, Brazil and Ecuador — as well as the Organization of American States, following suit (notable exceptions were Mexico and Bolivia).

On the day before, January 22, the United States’ vice president Mike Pence posted a Spanish-subtitled video on Twitter and YouTube in which he directly addressed the Venezuelan people, calling Maduro a “dictator with no legitimate claim to power.” Maduro responded by breaking diplomatic relations with the United States.

#23Ene Miles de ciudadanos marchan a esta hora contra Nicolás Maduro en Venezuela. Esta es una imagen de la Av. Francisco de Miranda, Chacao. https://t.co/UHnWKRRzrL #VenezuelaGritaLibertad pic.twitter.com/cI1B7Y5U2U

— El Espectador (@elespectador) January 23, 2019

#23J Thousands of citizens march right now against Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela. This is an image of Avenue Francisco de Miranda, in Chacao [a Caracas neighborhood]. #VenezuelaScreamsFreedom

Today's events are likely the toughest challenge ever faced by Nicolás Maduro, whose popularity has been shrinking briskly in recent years in the face of economic collapse, food shortages and soaring urban violence in the country. The last time such massive protests threatened his administration was in 2017, after he effectively nullified the powers of the National Assembly. Maduro survived that revolt, which left around 163 dead over the course of several months, and went on to be sworn in for a second six-year term on January 10, 2018, following an internationally condemned snap election in which opposition parties were barred from running.

Read our special coverage: “What's happening in Venezuela?”

Since earlier this month, opposition leaders have been organizing small protests in different areas of Caracas, including in traditional bastions of chavismo. On January 22, a small squad from the Bolivarian National Guard declared themselves in rebellion against the government. The army quickly managed to quell the mutiny, but for the opposition their move sparked hope, as the military is a critical actor in Venezuelan politics and unmistakably the backbone of Maduro's government.

Four people have been killed so far in today's protests, according to independent website Efecto Cucuyo. Police have responded with tear gas and rubber bullets in parts of the Caracas, according to reports from Caroata Digital, another independent outlet, and Provea, a local human rights organization.

#Caraota23Ene | Momento en que efectivos de la PN disparó a personas en la av Francisco de Miranda en #Chacao | Por: @IreneMSola pic.twitter.com/eFMbr0B6sg

— CaraotaDigital (@CaraotaDigital) January 23, 2019

[This is the moment] when agents from the National Police shot people in av Francisco de Miranda [in Caracas]

#23Ene Ahora tanquetas PNB mantienen represión en El Rosal, al menos 30 bombas lacrimógenas han sido arrojadas al cuerpo de manifestantes en los.ultimos 20 minutos pic.twitter.com/o6AD6rhQAI

— PROVEA (@_Provea) January 23, 2019

Tanks from the Bolivarian National Police crack down on protesters in El Rosal [Caracas] At least 30 tear gas grenades were thrown [directly] at protestor's bodies in the last 20 minutes.

Espacio Público also reports crackdowns in Caracas:

#DenunciaEP | GNB intentan robar el celular al reportero de @NTN24ve, Luis Gonzalo Pérez (@luisgonzaloprz), cuando cubría detención de un manifestante en la Plaa Madariaga de El Paraíso, en #Caracas.

Los funcionarios amenazaron con detener a varios periodistas. #23Ene https://t.co/Cm7uxX6oF0

— Espacio Público (@espaciopublico) January 23, 2019

Agents from the Bolivarian National Guard stole the phone of a reporter from NTN24, Luis Gonzalo Pérez, when he was covering the arrest of a protester is El Paraíso. The agents threatened to arrest several journalists.

Meanwhile, technical experts at NetBlocks have reported major disruptions to online traffic:

Confirmed: Major Internet disruptions in #Venezuela amid protests; YouTube, Google search and social media knocked largely offline #KeepItOnhttps://t.co/ZMKgc4SU81 pic.twitter.com/XqXZStWQcG

— NetBlocks.org (@netblocks) January 23, 2019

Government supporters have staged much smaller demonstrations in parts of the country, while some have taken to social media with hashtags such as “The streets belong to chavismo” (#LasCallesSonDelChavismo). But both sides have been using hashtags taken from passages of Venezuela's national anthem: “Let’s shout with verve” (#GritemosConBrío); “Down with the chains” (#AbajoCadenas).

Marco Teruggi, a sociologist who works with state-owned television station Telesur, tweeted that:

Los EEUU le dieron la orden a Guaidó de autoproclamarse presidente y así lo hizo. Abrieron las puertas de un escenario que van a profundizar con altos niveles de violencia y dirán que son inocentes y demócratas. #GritemosConBrio

— Marco Teruggi (@Marco_Teruggi) January 23, 2019

The United States ordered Guaidó to proclaim himself president and he's done it. They've opened the doors for a situation that they will help deepen with high levels of violence, and they will say they are innocent and democratic. #Let’sShoutWithVerve

The outcome of the protests remains to be seen. While the opposition has arguably received its most significant vote of confidence from international leaders since the National Assembly's election in 2015, the military has shown very few signs of breaking with Maduro.

Writing on the independent news site Caracas Chronicles, well-known political analyst Francisco Toro captures the feeling of both hope and uncertainty shared by many Venezuelans, at home and abroad:

Venezuela has lived through so many calamities in the last few years, we always tend to fall into the trap of thinking it can’t get any worse. It can get much, much worse. A civil war would obviously invite international intervention, on both sides. A Caribbean Syria, layered on top of a pre-existing food crisis, could make 2018 look like the good-old-days in retrospect.
(…)
The immediate future is enormously murky, and the uncertainty, understandably, drives everybody a little bit crazy. We all rebel against the simple, obvious truth: nobody knows what comes next.
(…)
In 2014, having the security services pull the plug on the Maduro regime was a fantasy. In 2017, it was a hope. In 2019, it’s the plan.

On social media, many have noted the significance of today's date. The video below reproduces an extract of the speech given by Romulo Betancourt, the former president who returned from exile after the fall of Jiménez on January 23, 1958, and would go on to be president of the country from 1959 to 1964. In his speech, Betancourt called for national unity and defence of democracy.

VIDEO Este es un mensaje de la generación de 1958 para la generación de 2019 acerca de un día que tienen en común: 23 de Enero. Comparte. #23E pic.twitter.com/UOPKwoYKaA

— EfectoEco (@ElEfectoeco) January 22, 2019

This is a message from the 58 generation to that of 2019 about a day they have in common: January 23rd. Share [this video].

Written by Laura Vidal · comments (0)
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Kazakh leader’s grandson complains he is passportless after stint in ‘private Russian jail’

Screenshot of Aisultan Nazarbayev's Facebook account. The man kissing a young Aisultan in the cover photo is Kazakhstan's de facto leader-for-life, Nursultan Nazarbayev.

The grandson of Kazakhstan's all-powerful leader Nursultan Nazarbayev has amazed social media users in the Central Asian country by claiming he is a “person without a passport” after spending time in a “private Russian jail.”

Kazakh users reacted with incredulity to the bizarre post on Aisultan Nazarbayev's Facebook account late on January 23 that the 28-year-old appeared to use to criticise state bureaucracy and police.

“Thanks to them I am currently a person without a passport or registration,” he wrote, referring to migration authorities.

In its first few hours, the post, which began with a philosophical question, was shared more than a hundred times.

Что такое Родина?�Для кого-то это просто место, где ты прописан по паспорту. Для кого-то это место, где тебе хорошо. А для кого-то это страна, с которой ты связан, как дерево корнями связано с землей, и не важно, стоит ли прописка в твоем паспорте и хорошо ли тебе там.

What is a Motherland? For some, this is just a place where you are registered by passport. For others, this is a place where you feel good. And for someone else, this is a country with which you are connected, like a tree is connected through its roots to the ground, and it doesn’t matter whether there is a registration stamp in your passport or whether you are feeling well there.

While there was no immediate proof Aisultan Nazarbayev wrote the post himself, it would be consistent with strange public appeals of his in the past.

Moreover, last month he had thanked Russian authorities for making him “free again, in the full sense of the word” in another cryptic post that he refused to clarify.

Nursultan Nazarbayev's authoritarian rule over Kazakhstan extends back to the period before the country gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.

Aisultan Nazarbayev is the son of his eldest daughter, Dariga, 55.

In 2017, while he was serving as the vice-president of the country's national football federation, Aisultan Nazarbayev admitted his authoritarian grandfather had helped him conquer an addiction to narcotics.

Before landing that job, Aisultan had been vociferously critical of Kazakhstan's football authorities and in particular the federation's head of the time, a loyalist of the president who also served as the country's chief of staff.

Aisultan left the post less than a year later and promptly disappeared from public view.

He found his voice again in the January 23 Facebook missive, fuming at the ex-Soviet republic's state organs dealing with migration, which he described as “simply hell.”

But users struggled to picture Aisultan struggling “like an ordinary citizen” in one of the country's hated “Centres of Service to the Population.”

These centres that deal with registration issues for citizens and foreigners are noted — to put it mildly — for an indifferent approach to customer service.

Почему то мне не верится, что ” автор” сам ходил в ЦОН.

Why is it that I don't believe this “author” visited a (registration centre) himself?

Полетят головы клерков

Now these paper-pushers will lose their heads.

Silent for a year

Most surprising for many users responding to the post was Aisultan Nazarbayev's claim he had spent time in “a private Russian jail.”

“Having freed myself from confinement in a private Russian jail, I returned (to Kazakhstan) without my documents — everything had been stolen and destroyed,” Nazarbayev wrote, without mentioning the reason for his apparent incarceration.

This is something! Aisultan Nazarbayev, president's grandson on his Facebook page 12 mins ago said that he has no citizenship now and that he was put in Russian prison by the “close people” whom he trusted. https://t.co/C2OpZL5GZp

— Aigerim Toleukhan (@aygeryma) January 23, 2019

Yet public speculation over Aisultan's whereabouts had been rife for some time due to his silence on social media for over a year after leaving his job in football.

While Aisultan admitted that he could have contacted his 78-year-old strongman grandfather to help solve his apparent undocumented status, he said he was “ashamed to bother the country's leader with an issue that should be resolved automatically.”

Nursultan Nazarbayev's current presidential term ends in 2020. He has never indicated a successor but said in a 2016 interview that he does not plan to hand power over the country of 18 million people to his children.

Written by Chris Rickleton · comments (0)
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Comprehensive profiling of translation initiation in influenza virus infected cells

by Heather M. Machkovech, Jesse D. Bloom, Arvind R. Subramaniam

Translation can initiate at alternate, non-canonical start codons in response to stressful stimuli in mammalian cells. Recent studies suggest that viral infection and anti-viral responses alter sites of translation initiation, and in some cases, lead to production of novel immune epitopes. Here we systematically investigate the extent and impact of alternate translation initiation in cells infected with influenza virus. We perform evolutionary analyses that suggest selection against non-canonical initiation at CUG codons in influenza virus lineages that have adapted to mammalian hosts. We then use ribosome profiling with the initiation inhibitor lactimidomycin to experimentally delineate translation initiation sites in a human lung epithelial cell line infected with influenza virus. We identify several candidate sites of alternate initiation in influenza mRNAs, all of which occur at AUG codons that are downstream of canonical initiation codons. One of these candidate downstream start sites truncates 14 amino acids from the N-terminus of the N1 neuraminidase protein, resulting in loss of its cytoplasmic tail and a portion of the transmembrane domain. This truncated neuraminidase protein is expressed on the cell surface during influenza virus infection, is enzymatically active, and is conserved in most N1 viral lineages. We do not detect globally higher levels of alternate translation initiation on host transcripts upon influenza infection or during the anti-viral response, but the subset of host transcripts induced by the anti-viral response are enriched for alternate initiation sites. Together, our results systematically map the landscape of translation initiation during influenza virus infection, and shed light on the evolutionary forces shaping this landscape.

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Whole-genome sequence of the bovine blood fluke <i>Schistosoma bovis</i> supports interspecific hybridization with <i>S</i>. <i>haematobium</i>

by Harald Oey, Martha Zakrzewski, Kerstin Gravermann, Neil D. Young, Pasi K. Korhonen, Geoffrey N. Gobert, Sujeevi Nawaratna, Shihab Hasan, David M. Martínez, Hong You, Martin Lavin, Malcolm K. Jones, Mark A. Ragan, Jens Stoye, Ana Oleaga, Aidan M. Emery, Bonnie Webster, David Rollinson, Robin B. Gasser, Donald P. McManus, Lutz Krause

Intestinal infection by the parasitic blood fluke Schistosoma bovis is a common veterinary problem in Africa and the Middle East and occasionally in the Mediterranean Region. The species also has the ability to form interspecific hybrids with the human parasite S. haematobium with natural hybridisation observed in West Africa, presenting possible zoonotic transmission. Additionally, this exchange of alleles between species may dramatically influence disease dynamics and parasite evolution. We have generated a 374 Mb assembly of the S. bovis genome using Illumina and PacBio-based technologies. Despite infecting different hosts and organs, the genome sequences of S. bovis and S. haematobium appeared strikingly similar with 97% sequence identity. The two species share 98% of protein-coding genes, with an average sequence identity of 97.3% at the amino acid level. Genome comparison identified large continuous parts of the genome (up to several 100 kb) showing almost 100% sequence identity between S. bovis and S. haematobium. It is unlikely that this is a result of genome conservation and provides further evidence of natural interspecific hybridization between S. bovis and S. haematobium. Our results suggest that foreign DNA obtained by interspecific hybridization was maintained in the population through multiple meiosis cycles and that hybrids were sexually reproductive, producing viable offspring. The S. bovis genome assembly forms a highly valuable resource for studying schistosome evolution and exploring genetic regions that are associated with species-specific phenotypic traits.

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Notice of Republication: Simulating Cortical Development as a Self Constructing Process: A Novel Multi-Scale Approach Combining Molecular and Physical Aspects

by The PLOS Computational Biology Staff

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Epithelial stratification shapes infection dynamics

by Carmen Lía Murall, Robert Jackson, Ingeborg Zehbe, Nathalie Boulle, Michel Segondy, Samuel Alizon

Infections of stratified epithelia contribute to a large group of common diseases, such as dermatological conditions and sexually transmitted diseases. To investigate how epithelial structure affects infection dynamics, we develop a general ecology-inspired model for stratified epithelia. Our model allows us to simulate infections, explore new hypotheses and estimate parameters that are difficult to measure with tissue cell cultures. We focus on two contrasting pathogens: Chlamydia trachomatis and Human papillomaviruses. Using cervicovaginal parameter estimates, we find that key infection symptoms can be explained by differential interactions with the layers, while clearance and pathogen burden appear to be bottom-up processes. Cell protective responses to infections (e.g. mucus trapping) generally lowered pathogen load but there were specific effects based on infection strategies. Our modeling approach opens new perspectives for 3D tissue culture experimental systems of infections and, more generally, for developing and testing hypotheses related to infections of stratified epithelia.

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Evolutionary dynamics of bacteria in the gut microbiome within and across hosts

by Nandita R. Garud, Benjamin H. Good, Oskar Hallatschek, Katherine S. Pollard

Gut microbiota are shaped by a combination of ecological and evolutionary forces. While the ecological dynamics have been extensively studied, much less is known about how species of gut bacteria evolve over time. Here, we introduce a model-based framework for quantifying evolutionary dynamics within and across hosts using a panel of metagenomic samples. We use this approach to study evolution in approximately 40 prevalent species in the human gut. Although the patterns of between-host diversity are consistent with quasi-sexual evolution and purifying selection on long timescales, we identify new genealogical signatures that challenge standard population genetic models of these processes. Within hosts, we find that genetic differences that accumulate over 6-month timescales are only rarely attributable to replacement by distantly related strains. Instead, the resident strains more commonly acquire a smaller number of putative evolutionary changes, in which nucleotide variants or gene gains or losses rapidly sweep to high frequency. By comparing these mutations with the typical between-host differences, we find evidence that some sweeps may be seeded by recombination, in addition to new mutations. However, comparisons of adult twins suggest that replacement eventually overwhelms evolution over multi-decade timescales, hinting at fundamental limits to the extent of local adaptation. Together, our results suggest that gut bacteria can evolve on human-relevant timescales, and they highlight the connections between these short-term evolutionary dynamics and longer-term evolution across hosts.

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Local radio station in Russia cancels interview with LGBT activists after threats to editor

Activists in Madrid protest LGBT rights violations in Russia // gaelx, under CC BY-SA 2.0

Echo of Moscow in Yaroslavl, a local affiliate of Echo of Moscow, Russia’s oldest independent radio network, cancelled an interview with LGBT activists after receiving homophobic threats, the station’s editor Lyudmila Shabuyeva said in a Facebook post:

Вчера поступили угрозы в адрес наших сегодняшних гостей и нас, если мы проведем эфир на тему ЛГБТ.

Я отменяю эфир.

Yesterday we received threats against our guests and ourselves if we proceed with our talk show about LGBT.
I’m cancelling the show.

According to independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta, the show featuring Yaroslavl’s LGBT activists was scheduled to air in the early morning of Wednesday, January 23. The same activists had recently picketed the town’s main square to protest against the persecution of gay people in Russia, notably in the republic of Chechnya. The station invited them to be interviewed about the protest and their experience of being openly gay in provincial Russia.

Shabuyeva’s initial announcement of the show attracted a torrent of homophobic abuse in the comments, including some from local officials, but that didn’t put her off, she told Novaya Gazeta. However, late in the night before the show, Shabuyeva says, a stranger called her on the phone from an unidentified number and told her that if she were to proceed with the scheduled programming, her guests would be met outside the studio with baseball bats. She could also face problems, the anonymous caller threatened. Fearing for her guests’ safety, Shabuyeva cancelled the show and replaced it with another programming.

The picket on Yaroslavl’s main square was part of a national campaign #saveLGBTinRussia aimed at raising awareness about the brutal persecution of gay people in the republic of Chechnya. Similar pickets and rallies were held in other Russian cities.

Родина-мать призывает своих детей (граждан) бороться с ксенофобией и репрессиями в современной России. Очнитесь от её крика! #saveLGBTinRussiahttps://t.co/vpfTmPnCSM pic.twitter.com/blGzqv437E

— !Alliance | Альянс! (@hetero_for_lgbt) 22 января 2019 г.

The Motherland Calls on her children (the citizens) to fight xenophobia and repressions in modern Russia. Let her call awaken you!
[the sign says: RUSSIA’S DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE COULD FIND NO GAYS IN CHECHYA. THEY ARE THERE: IN PRISONS AND IN GRAVES. #SAVELGBTINRUSSIA HOMOPHOBIA=FASCISM

In April 2017, Novaya Gazeta reported that the authorities of Chechnya, a troubled Muslim republic in the south of Russia ruled by a former warlord Ramzan Kadyrov, was waging a brutal campaign of repressions against its LGBT population. Recent reports said the “purge” has been intensifying, with at least two victims dead and dozens held in illegal detention.

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Antisemitismo, audizione Di Segni, presidente dell’Unione delle Comunità ebraiche italiane – Domani alle 18 diretta webtv

Domani, giovedì 24 gennaio, alle ore 18, la Commissione Esteri svolge l’audizione della presidente dell’Unione delle Comunità ebraiche italiane (Ucei), Noemi Di Segni, sulla diffusione dell’antisemitismo in Europa.
L’appuntamento viene trasmesso in diretta webtv.

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