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Democracy activist Joshua Wong says world must ‘stand with Hong Kong’

first_imgTopics : The world must stand in solidarity with Hong Kongers after Beijing imposed a sweeping national security law on the semi-autonomous city, activist Joshua Wong said Monday, vowing to continue campaigning for democracy.Wong, one of the city’s most prominent young activists, was speaking outside a court where he and fellow campaigners were being prosecuted for involvement in civil unrest, which rocked Hong Kong last year.China enacted the security law for the restless city last week, banning acts of subversion, secession, terrorism and collusion with foreign forces. Party disbanded, books removed Wong steered clear of any mention of sanctions in his remarks on Monday, instead sticking to more general comments about not turning a blind eye to what is happening in Hong Kong.”We also encourage the global community to let our voice be heard around the world,” he said.The national security law, imposed on Tuesday, is the most radical shift in how Hong Kong is run since it was handed back to China by Britain in 1997.Under the handover deal, Beijing promised Hong Kong could keep key civil liberties, as well as judicial and legislative autonomy, for 50 years.The new law has changed that landscape.It empowers China’s security agents to operate openly in the city, toppling the legal firewall that has existed between the mainland’s party-controlled courts and Hong Kong’s independent judiciary.Beijing has also said it will have jurisdiction over especially “serious” prosecutions.China says the powers will restore stability after a year of pro-democracy protests, will not stifle freedoms, and will only target a “very small minority”.But police have arrested people for possessing anything carrying slogans pushing independence or greater autonomy, and businesses have scrambled to scrub protest displays.Over the weekend, public libraries removed a number of books written by dissidents, including a title by Wong, to review whether they complied with the new law.Wong’s political party Demosisto announced it was disbanding last Tuesday. Its co-founder Nathan Law, another prominent former student leader, announced two days later that he had fled Hong Kong.Wong has remained in the city, where he faces ongoing prosecutions over last year’s protests.On Monday, he was in court alongside Agnes Chow and Ivan Lam to face three unlawful assembly charges.Wong previously served jail time for his involvement in protests in 2014. Wong — who began campaigning for democracy when he was just 12 — is often vilified by China’s state media as a “black hand” conspiring with foreign forces to undermine the nation.Beijing has been incensed by Wong and others meeting Western politicians and supporting sanctions in response to China’s tightening control over the city.The new security law specifically outlaws lobbying for sanctions. The law has sent a wave of fear through the city, and criminalized certain opinions such as calls for independence or autonomy.At his court appearance on Tuesday, Wong, 23, remained unbowed.”We still have to let the world know that now is the time to stand with Hong Kong,” he told reporters, adding that China could not “ignore and silence the voice of Hong Kong people”.”With the belief of Hong Kong people to fight for freedom, we will never give up and surrender to Beijing.”last_img read more

Doig River orphan well project honoured with an Award

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Environmental Managers Association of B.C. (EMA of BC) presented the Doig River First Nation (DRFN) with an Indigenous Project Award.Saturday, June 13th, 2019 at an Awards Gala, the Indigenous Project Award was to recognize an innovative orphan well restoration pilot project. As part of the recognition, DRFN received $2,000 in funding from the EMA of BC that will go toward training a member of the community in environmental practices and fieldwork. “We would like to thank the EMA of BC for this opportunity to achieve our vision to be a leader in the area of environmental restoration of orphan wells,” said Chief Makadahay.- Advertisement -The pilot project creates meaningful engagement with key players that include DRFN, BC Oil and Gas Commission (BCOGC) and industry contractors who work together toward the long-term goal of restoring hundreds of orphan well sites on DRFN traditional territories in northeast B.C. The budget for each orphan well reclamation project varies greatly depending on its size and scope. Provincial funds have been established to help pay for the growing problem of abandoned well sites in Western Canada. Earlier this year, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that energy companies must fulfil their environmental obligations before paying back creditors in the case of insolvency or bankruptcy.“Doig River has experienced a lot of activity in its territory over the last 40 years and we would like to be part of the solution to reclaim and restore the land,” said DRFN Chief Trevor Makadahay. “This is important to our community, so we can exercise our treaty rights on a landscape that is healthy and back to its natural state.” Advertisement Full remediation and reclamation of an orphan well site start with a full assessment of the contamination level of soil and/or groundwater. Depending on the size and scope of the work, contaminated material may be removed and transported to a landfill and/or Treatment, Recovery and Disposal (TRD) facility or treated onsite. Any issues with the wellbore integrity need to be resolved and the wellhead or pumpjack is dismantled and transported to a metals recycling facility. Once the equipment and contaminated material is safely and responsibly dealt with, the site is ready for the reclamation phase. Activities in this phase include may include replacing topsoil, recontouring the land, reseeding and ongoing maintenance such as regular soil and groundwater sampling.last_img read more