first_img Reporters Without Borders is deeply shocked to learn that the Surinamese parliament yesterday approved an amnesty law for crimes against humanity under the past military dictatorship. SurinameAmericas SurinameAmericas August 12, 2010 Find out more RSF_en to go further October 3, 2013 Find out more Organisation Former minister seeks €230,000 in damages from magazine News Receive email alerts Newscenter_img Proposed by six members of the ruling coalition and passed by 28 votes to 12, the law amends a 1989 amnesty law – which applied only to the civil war period from 1987 to 1992 – and grants immunity from prosecution for all such crimes from the time of Col. Desi Bouterse’s military coup on 25 February 1980. The murders of five journalists in the Fort Zeelandia military barracks on 8 December 1982 would probably remain unpunished for ever.“This bill is an insult to the memory of the victims who paid with their lives for their commitment to human rights and freedom of information in the face of a regime of terror,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Daring to use ‘reconciliation’ and national ‘stability’ as arguments for imposing impunity is the height of cynicism.“The amnesty comes at a time when the Fort Zeelandia murder trial that began in 2007 is drawing to a close and evidence is accumulating against the main suspect, Desi Bouterse, who returned to power through the polls in July 2010 and continues to be president. Bouterse must be held accountable before the courts, even if this must wait until the end of his current presidential term.”Suspected of “conspiracy,” 15 opponents of Bouterse’s military regime were arrested, tortured and executed in the Fort Zeelandia barracks on the night of 8 December 1982. They included five journalists: Andre Kamperveen, the owner and manager of Radio ABC, Frank Wijngaarde, a Radio ABC reporter, and three print media journalists, Leslie Rahman, Bram Behr and Jozef Slagveer. After the massacre, soldiers torched the premises of Radio ABC, Radio Radika and the daily newspaper De Vrije Stem. No media was allowed to operate during this period aside from the state radio SRS and the daily De Ware Tijd.Bouterse has recognised his “political responsibility” for the massacre but insists he was not present when it took place. This defence has been challenged in the course of the trial that began before a military court in 2007. An army officer who participated in the coup, Ruben Rozendaal, has testified against President Bouterse, prompting Bouterse to call him “Judas.” The prosecutor is due to present his final arguments on 13 April and a verdict is expected in May.“The traumas of the past are perpetuated by impunity, which by definition runs counter to the rule of law and the expression of fundamental human rights,” Reporters Without Borders added. “In this respect, the courage shown by civil society, judges and journalists in other South American countries – especial former Operation Condor countries – has set an invaluable example.”On the picture, from left to right, middle rank : Leslie Rahman, Frank Wijngaarde, Bram Behr, Jozef Slagveer and Andre Kamperveen. Bouterse’s installation as president must not mean impunity for past murders of journalists April 5, 2012 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Amnesty insult to memory of dictatorship’s victims, including five journalists News News Related documents Dutch versionPDF – 69.33 KB November 16, 2009 Find out more Help by sharing this information Follow the news on Suriname Newspaper reporter threatened after writing about drug traffickinglast_img read more

first_img(WBNG)– With the start date for a potential fall sports season just over one month away, parents of athletes are growing frustrated with the unknowns. “I am in full support of students being able to play,” said Sexton. “I also think it should be left up to individual parents and athletes.” Sexton’s son Parker is a three-sport athlete. He is waiting to see if he’ll be able to begin his senior football season next month. “I don’t think the end decision should be up to the governor or the state,” she said. “I think a lot of responsibility also goes back on us to make sure we’re taking care of our student athletes,” she said. Sexton said she is confident schools and teams will implement policies to keep kids healthy and safe, but added the responsibility should be shared between parents, schools and coaches.  “Anytime you step on the field or court there’s going to be a risk to injury,” said Merrick. “This is no different.” Ava plays volleyball in the fall, and Merrick also says she believes the decision should be left up to parents. “It’s that little bit of a carrot dangled in front of them that says hey, let’s work just a little bit harder to get to where you need to be to do the things you want to do in life,” said Sexton. Chenango Forks mother of four Pennie Merrick agrees. Merrick made a difficult decision this summer to let her 13-year-old daughter Ava play softball after recognizing it was best for her mental health. Merrick said the benefits of letting Ava play softball this summer outweighed the risks. The New York State Public High School Athletic Association said the state has not provided guidance or a timeline to determine whether or not the season will begin on September 21. Sexton said playing sports or being involved in extracurricular activities provides an outlet and pushes kids to do better in school. “You’re trying to make plans but you don’t know what you’re planning for or when you’re planning for it,” said Spencer-Van Etten mom Heather Sexton. “She was becoming very withdrawn,” said Merrick. “And at that point, we decided this was a decision that needed to be made whether we were gonna take the risk of COVID, versus whether we needed to get her back out there.”last_img read more