Montreal, Canada - January 31, 2004

January 2004 - Vol. 6

RCPL January 2004 Newsletter includes the following items:

1.
Death penalty reenacted in Lebanon 
2.
Freedom of expression: NTV threatened with shutdown and prevented from airing news for 3 days.
3. Lebanon's ranking declines in a new study in regards to democracy, media and economy 
4.
RCPL launches a scholarship
5.
Live radio interview with RCPL

1. Death penalty reenacted in Lebanon

European countries and Human Rights groups such as Amnesty are condemning the scheduled death penalties this weekend. It is imperative that the Canadian Ambassador in Beirut communicates Canada’s position on death penalties. Canadians are opposed to the death penalty, where it was abolished in 1976. 

RCPL is concerned about the resumption of executions in Lebanon after a 5 year suspension of the practice. Please sign this petition in order to abolish the death penalty and to respect individuals’ rights in Lebanon:
http://www.rcplonline.org/archives/actions/death_penalty.htm.


2. Freedom of expression: NTV threatened with shutdown and prevented from airing news for 3 days

NTV, also known as New Television, has once again been threatened with a shutdown and was preventing from airing news for 3 days. This relating to a news commentary about the prosecutor general being corrupted. Television stations in Lebanon are often threatened with shutdown and sometimes violently shutdown. Canadian authorities should request the UN rapporteur to investigate Lebanon's breach of media expression rights.


3. Lebanon's ranking declines in a new study in regards to democracy, media and economy
The Heritage Foundation, which is an American foundation committed to building an America where freedom, opportunity, prosperity and civil society flourish, has ranked all countries across the world. Lebanon’s ranking from 2003 has declined to 94 worldwide, and 11 out of 17 Arab countries.


4. RCPL launches a scholarship

RCPL launches scholarship to encourage research on practical solutions to reducing corruption in Lebanon. To apply, please refer to the site link:
http://www.rcplonline.org/scholarship.htm.


5. Live radio interview with RCPL

Radio Middle East in Canada (CRMO), a Montreal based community radio, conducted an Audio live interview with RCPL on Sunday January 18, 2004 @ 10:30 AM (EST). 

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