(ANSA) – NEW YORK, AUGUST 29 – The UN Security Council unanimously approved a resolution extending the mandate of the United Nations mission in Lebanon (Unifil) until August 31, 2021.
The document provides for the reduction of the maximum number of troops from 15,000 to 13,000 (as requested by the US): a provision that does not require any cuts to the forces on the ground, currently about 10,250 soldiers. It also strengthens the monitoring mechanism in southern Lebanon.
The company said that employees committed a gross violation of the rules for the operation of the tailings, which led to the dumping of waste
Photo: radionovasg / VK
Some employees of the Talnakh enrichment plant (PF, part of Norilsk Nickel) have been suspended from work, the Norilsk Nickel said in a statement to RBC. “Responsible persons of the Pacific Fleet are suspended from the performance of their duties,” the company said.
Norilsk Nickel also said that Pacific Fleet officers committed “a flagrant violation of the rules for operating the tailings of the factory.”
The dumping occurred earlier on Sunday. According to Norilsk Nickel, the leadership of the Pacific Fleet decided to pump clarified industrial water into the adjacent territory in order to prevent possible emergency situations associated with an increase in the water level in the settling pond of the tailing dump.
Earlier, Rosprirodnadzor reported that the water level in the pond rose sharply after conducting hydraulic tests of the hot water pipeline and rainfall.
Investigators began checking due to dumping of waste at the Norilsk Nickel factory
BRUSSELS – The EU Commission will not carry out any further mission, in addition to the standard ones of the European Semester, to verify the expenses related to the Mes, and will not make any request for macroeconomic adjustment, not even ex post, to the countries that ask for aid: the commissioners write it Dombrovskis and Gentiloni in a letter to the president of the Eurogroup Centeno, which clarifies the type of monitoring that Brussels will carry out on the new credit line.
The analysis of the sustainability of the Italian debt “indicates that, despite the risks, the debt remains sustainable in the medium term, also thanks to important mitigating factors” such as the debt profile, with average maturities of 8 years that mitigate the risks of temporary increases of rates. So “even if the debt deteriorates due to the COVID-19 crisis, the debt / GDP ratio in the baseline scenario remains on a downward path in the medium term”. The EU Commission writes it.
The impact of the pandemic “poses risks for the financial stability of the Eurozone, but at the same time the economic situation is fundamentally solid “, writes the Commission in the assessment of suitability to the Mes called to make in view of the new credit line. In all 19 countries of the euro zone” public debts are sustainable, will be maintained access to markets on reasonable terms, nobody is in debt or deficit procedure and there are no solvency problems for the ECB in the banking sector “.
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and the president of the commission EU Ursula von der Leyen had a telephone conversation today focused on the preparation of the Recovery Fund and on the negotiation path related to the next Multiannual Financial Framework. This was announced by Palazzo Chigi.
Fundamental for monitoring the epidemic are also the degree of reactivity is “keeping the health system to ensure the identification and management of contacts, monitoring of quarantined, an adequate and timely execution of the swabs for the diagnostic assessment of cases “.
Weekly risk calculation An updated risk classification for each Region must take place at least weekly. The Ministry of Health, through a special control room, which will involve the Regions and the Higher Institute of Health, collects the information necessary for the classification of the risk and carries out a weekly classification of the risk level of an uncontrolled and unmanageable transmission of the viruses in the Regions.
In the current state of the epidemic, the decree reads, “the consolidation of a new phase, characterized by initiatives of loosening the lockdown and by their progressive extension, it can only take place where one is insured close monitoring the progress of the transmission of the virus on the national territory “.
Among the prerequisites indicated there is also “the connection between primary care and that in regime of recovery, as well as the constant and timely feeding of information flows necessary, to be achieved through the insertion of data in information systems “.
Searching and managing contacts, to be conducted effectively, “must foresee an adequate number of human resources, such as health and public health workers, to be involved according to local needs. On the basis of ECDC estimates, in order to guarantee this essential activity in an optimal way, they should be made available in the various local branches not less than one person for every 10,000 inhabitants“.
WBecause of the danger of terrorism, we are now also tolerating humiliating security measures at the airports without resistance. With our hands raised, we let ourselves be examined with the body scanner. We also allow our bodies to be scanned for hidden weapons. Each of us is a potential terrorist.
The virus is an aerial terror. It is a much greater threat than Islamic terrorism. It is almost logic that the pandemic will result in measures that permanently transform society as a whole into a security zone, into a quarantine where everyone is treated like a potential virus carrier.
In the middle of the pandemic, Europe and the USA are losing their radiance. They stumble. They are apparently unable to get the epidemic under control. Asian countries such as Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea or Japan, on the other hand, have brought the pandemic under control relatively quickly. What is the reason? What are the system advantages of Asian countries? In Europe and the USA, the virus meets a liberal society in which it spreads effortlessly. Is liberalism to blame for Europe’s failure? Does the virus feel comfortable in the liberal system?
It will soon be recognized that in order to combat the pandemic, it is necessary to proceed in small parts, that is, to take a look at the individual. But liberalism does not allow this to be done easily. A liberal society consists of individuals with freedom who do not allow government access. Even data protection prevents small-scale surveillance of individuals.
Since liberal society does not have the option of making the individual subject the subject of surveillance, it is only left with a complete shutdown with massive economic consequences. The West will soon come to the actually fateful realization that only a bio-policy that allows unrestricted access to the individual prevents the shutdown from protecting protected privacy from being a protective space for the virus. But this realization means an end to liberalism.
The Asians approach the virus with hardness and discipline unimaginable for Europeans. The individual is the focus of surveillance, which is the main difference to Europe’s pandemic control. Their rigorous procedures are reminiscent of those disciplinary measures that were taken in Europe in the 17th century in the face of the plague epidemic. Michel Foucault describes it impressively in his analysis of the disciplinary society. Houses are sealed off from the outside. The key must be handed over to the authorities. People who secretly leave their quarantine are punished with death. Walking animals are killed.
Those who move risk their lives
Monitoring is seamless. Unconditional obedience is required. Each house is monitored individually. During the inspection, all residents of the house must appear at the window. A window is assigned to those who live in the back yard. Everyone is called by name and asked about their state of health. Those who lie must face the death penalty. A complete registration system is being set up. The room solidifies into a network of impermeable cells. Everyone is tied to their place. Those who move risk their lives.
In the 17th century, Europe developed into a disciplinary society. Biopolitical power penetrates the smallest details of life. The whole society turns into a panopticon. It is penetrated by the panoptic view. The memories of those disciplinary measures are completely faded in Europe. These are actually much more rigorous than the measures China is taking in the face of the pandemic.
But you could say: Europe of the 17th and 18th centuries is China today. China has now established a digital disciplinary society with a social scoring system that enables seamless, biopolitical surveillance and control of the population. There is no unobserved moment in everyday life. Every click, every purchase, every contact, every activity in the social networks is monitored. 200 million surveillance cameras with facial recognition are also used. Those who run the red light, who deal with people critical of the regime or who post critical comments on social media live dangerously. On the other hand, anyone who buys healthy food or reads newspapers close to the party will be rewarded with cheap credit, health insurance or a travel visa.
Complete monitoring works
This seamless monitoring is possible in China because the Internet and mobile phone providers exchange data with the authorities without restriction. So the state knows where I am, who I am meeting, what I am doing, what I am looking for, what I am thinking about, what I am buying, what I am eating. In the future, body temperature, weight, blood sugar levels etc. may also be controlled by the state.
The seamless digital surveillance of the population is now proving to be highly effective against the virus. Anyone leaving the Beijing train station is captured by a camera that measures their body temperature. If the values are noticeable, those people who were in the same wagon are informed by cell phone. The system knows who was sitting where on the train and when. And only with the help of technical data can potential infected be found.
The use of drones to monitor the quarantine is reported on social media. If someone secretly leaves their quarantine, the drone they fly to will prompt them to return to the apartment. Maybe she even prints out a fine and lets it sail down on the person, who knows. Apparently there is also a paradigm shift in the fight against pandemics, which is not sufficiently recognized in the West. It is digitized. It is fought not only by virologists and epidemiologists, but also by computer scientists and big data specialists.
In the fight against the virus, the individual is monitored individually. An app assigns each individual a color-coded QR code that shows their health status. Red means a two-week quarantine. Only those who have a green QR code can move freely.
Not only China, but also other Asian countries rely on individual monitoring. A wide variety of data is linked to find potential infected people. The South Korean government is even considering making people in quarantine wear a digital wristband that allows them to be monitored around the clock. This surveillance method was previously only intended for sex criminals. So, given the pandemic, everyone is treated like a potential criminal.
The Asian anti-virus model is incompatible with Western liberalism. The pandemic reveals the cultural difference between Asia and Europe. In Asia there is still a disciplinary society, a collectivism with a strong tendency to discipline. Radical disciplinary measures that would be strongly rejected by Europeans are easily enforceable there. They are perceived less as a restriction of individual rights than as a fulfillment of collective duties. Countries like China and Singapore have an autocratic regime. A few decades ago, South Korea and Taiwan were also autocratic.
System benefits from Confucius
Authoritarian regimes educate people to be obedient disciplinary subjects. And Asia is shaped by Confucianism, which requires unconditional obedience to authorities. All of these peculiarities of Asia are proving to be system benefits in containing the epidemic. Would the Asian disciplinary society prevail globally in the wake of the pandemic?
You don’t have to rely on Asia to point out the danger western liberalism is facing in the face of the pandemic. Panoptic surveillance is not an exclusively Asian phenomenon. We all already live in a global digital panopticon. Social media are also increasingly like a panopticon, which monitors and mercilessly exploits its participants. We voluntarily expose ourselves. The disclosure of data does not take place on a compulsory basis, but out of inner need. We are constantly asked to share our opinions, preferences and needs, to share and to tell our lives. The data are then evaluated by digital platforms for behavioral forecasting and control and are exploited mercilessly for commercial purposes.
We live in digital feudalism today. The digital feudal lords like Facebook give us land and say: You get it for free, plaster it. And we plow it like crazy. In the end the feudal lords come and fetch the harvest. In this way, all communication is exploited and monitored. This system is extremely efficient. There is no protest against it because we live in a system that exploits freedom itself.
Capitalism as a whole also turns into surveillance capitalism. We are constantly monitored and controlled by platforms such as Google, Facebook or Amazon to maximize profits. Every click is registered and evaluated. We are guided by algorithmic threads like puppets. We feel free here. We are dealing with a dialectic of freedom that turns it into a bondage. Is that still liberalism?
The question should now be asked: Why should all this digital surveillance, which is taking place anyway, stop at the virus? The pandemic will probably lead to the elimination of the inhibition threshold that previously prevented biopolitical surveillance from being extended to the individual. In the face of the pandemic, we are heading for a biopolitical surveillance regime. Not only our communication, but also our body, our state of health becomes the subject of digital surveillance. The digital surveillance society is experiencing a biopolitical expansion.
Are we facing the quarantine society?
According to Naomi Klein, the shock is a favorable moment that allows a new rule system to be installed. The pandemic shock will ensure that a global digital biopolitics that controls our body with its control and monitoring system, a biopolitical disciplinary society that permanently monitors our state of health, will prevail.
It is also possible that we feel free in this biopolitical surveillance regime. All of these surveillance measures happen, we would think, for our own health. The rule ends when it coincides with freedom. Would the West feel forced to give up its liberal principles in the midst of pandemic shock? Are we facing a biopolitical quarantine society that will permanently limit our freedom? So is China Europe’s future?
Beijing The 27-year-old Liu, who only wants to be mentioned in the newspaper by his last name, looks up from his smartphone. In the distance he sees the bus he is waiting for. He is supposed to take him to his job at an internet company in the east Chinese city of Hangzhou.
Liu lowers his eyes again, taps the Alipay payment service app on his smartphone and activates the “Hangzhou Health Code” mini software. He makes sure that the service is running. Then he joins a long line. Anyone who wants to ride on the bus must show the driver their personal code. Green means no problem, while yellow and red indicate that the person is not allowed to ride. Liu shows the driver his prepared code. He is green. Liu can get in.
Hangzhou was one of the first cities to use the new program called “Health Code”. In order to use the service, users have to enter their health status in addition to their name, identification number and home address and inform them of where they have been in the past two weeks. The software also accesses users’ location data.
The program, the code, has become a de facto obligation for Chinese citizens. Depending on the city, it serves as an admission ticket for restaurants, local transport and supermarkets. Many employers oblige their employees to activate the service and show the code before entering the office or workshop. According to Fintech Ant Financial, which Alipay belongs to, around 200 cities in China are now using the software.
China is currently trying to do the balancing act: On the one hand, the government wants to further contain the now significantly lower number of newly infected people. On the other hand, companies are supposed to resume their work – and return to everyday life in the second largest economy in the world, hard hit by the corona virus. The health codes are intended to help. However, critics fear that the government will take advantage of the situation to further increase surveillance of Chinese citizens.
The code and other tools used to collect data have become an integral part of the daily lives of millions of Chinese. For Liu too. Before he gets to his work place, a security guard checks his body temperature at the entrance to the office building. Then Liu shows him the paper ID that his company has given him. Finally, he holds up his green code to the security guard. The supermarket where he shops, the restaurant where he eats lunch, and the security guards at the entrance to his housing estate also want to see the code.
“Most people have adapted to the new standard,” observes Liu. Some, mostly older people would sometimes not show their code when getting on the bus. The driver then reminds them to show it or to apply in case of doubt.
Most cities in China use software based on the health code system developed in Hangzhou. The service can usually be used in at least three ways: through the Alipay payment service app, the WeChat messenger service, the Ding Talk communication platform or the city government’s own website.
Other cities, such as China’s capital Beijing or the east Chinese metropolis of Shanghai, have developed their own systems. Most cities do not accept the code from another city. However, there are plans to make the systems compatible with one another.
In an interview with the Handelsblatt, Ant Financial distances itself from the service. It was developed solely by the government. Alipay “only provided technical support”, for example by making the service accessible via the Alipay platform.
The system is solely offered and controlled by the government, Alipay has no access to the data that is collected, the company emphasizes. The express distancing has a reason: Alipay wants to grow in Europe, negative headlines in connection with data protection would damage the image of the app.
It is unclear exactly which data the code services collect and where the information is passed on. To be able to use the service, the user must agree that his location data is determined and passed on to the local authority for epidemic prevention and control. This state agency knows at all times where the user of the service is and who he is meeting. The option to leave your smartphone at home to avoid tracking no longer exists – the code is now necessary for everyday life.
The responsible authorities in Hangzhou City declined to answer a questionnaire from the Handelsblatt. One question was where, in addition to the local epidemic prevention and control authorities, users’ data would be forwarded. An investigation by the New York Times in early March suggested that the location data was also shared with the police.
Work on state data pool
Mareike Ohlberg from the China think tank Merics in Berlin believes that the apps are not a new escalation level in the surveillance of citizens in China primarily because of the type of data collected. The opportunities to track a person’s location had previously existed.
However, she sees another danger: “Programs such as the health code apps, to which several government agencies have access, are increasing the trend in China to collect data more systematically and to make it available to all government institutions,” says Ohlberg. So far there is no one central location where all the data is located that everyone can access. “However, the Chinese government is working on this, and tracking tools such as the health code programs can help to further develop the system in this direction.”
Public debates about data protection are very rare in China. Even in the case of the health codes, there is hardly any visible criticism. This does not mean that protecting Chinese citizens’ privacy is unimportant per se. For example, a well-known professor from Beijing University in a blog entry in early March referred to the issue of data protection during the pandemic.
However, Liu is one of many Chinese who have no privacy concerns. He sees it as an advantage that the code system tracks the movements of the citizens. “The combination with our own health information currently makes it the most effective way to control the epidemic,” he says.
Xu Yiao, a Shanghai business consultant, also has no concerns about his data. He estimates that he uses Suishenma, the Shanghai version of the health code, about four times a day. He has to show the code, which also shows green for him, when entering the subway and at his work place.
Xu accesses the service via the WeChat messenger app. To do this, he has to scan his face every week with facial recognition software. “I don’t know who developed the program and where my data is stored,” he says. He found “Suishenma” comfortable and easy.
Human rights organizations like Human Rights Watch criticize the amount of data collection as disproportionate. They fear that situations such as the corona crisis could be used to further expand such data collections. “The reason for the data collection gives this form of surveillance a new legitimacy, because it serves a higher goal: health,” explains Merics expert Ohlberg. “The danger is that the detailed surveillance of Chinese citizens will continue to be normalized in this way, not only within China, but also vis-à-vis abroad.”
In fact, local governments have already expressed the following: “In the future, further data and application services will gradually be introduced in order to become personal identification and service assistants for the Shanghai”, says a response from the public relations office of the Shanghai city administration to one Citizen request for the “Suishenma” program in early March
The Hangzhou City Committee’s public relations department declined to comment on Handelsblatt’s request for the system to be maintained after the crisis. Upon request, a central information center in the city of Beijing said that there was as yet no information that the code programs would continue to be used after the pandemic. The decision is still pending.
Human rights organizations cite past experiences, according to which there has often been no turning back from a level of surveillance once it has been established. In China during the Olympic Games in 2008, surveillance of public spaces by video cameras was significantly strengthened. When the major event ended, the level of surveillance remained. China is currently the country with the most surveillance cameras.
System seems prone to errors
It is estimated that between 200 million and 626 million cameras are in use. According to a Comparitech survey, there are 168 surveillance cameras per 1000 inhabitants in the metropolis of Chongching, 114 cameras in Shanghai and 40 cameras in Beijing. For comparison: there are eleven in Berlin and three in Paris.
In addition to the enormous amount of data that the code service collects, there is another topic: The determination of the code seems to be prone to errors. For example, users report that their code turned red and they had to be quarantined because they were said to be in contact with people who had the virus. But that was not the case.
Wang Hao from Beijing, who does not want to read his real name in the newspaper because he fears negative consequences at his workplace at a state-owned company, reports in a conversation about problems with “Jingxinxiangzhu” (read: Dschingchinchiangdschu), the Beijing version of Health Code service.
In late February, Wang took the train back to Beijing from his home in northern China. A train attendant instructed him to register with “Jingxinxiangzhu”. After registering with his name, home address and ID number and providing information about his state of health, he continued to his apartment in central Beijing and started his 14-day quarantine.
Then came the day when the two weeks were over. Wang was looking forward to doing sports in a nearby park again. But when he checked “Jingxinxiangzhu” in the morning, his code was not green but yellow, which means that he should remain in quarantine.
Wang was irritated. He wrote in the neighborhood chat room of his apartment building and asked for help. When no one answered, he cleared his anger on the Weibo social network. “I was probably disappointed that I still wasn’t allowed to leave the apartment after two weeks,” said Wang. Two hours later, his code was green. He was not told why he was changed.
More: Face recognition is not only used in China. The new technology is also spreading in the USA and Europe.
EiTB will pay special attention to International Women’s Day on March 8, but in the previous days, the media of the Basque communication team will also be working on special content on the fight for equality.
The news of ETB1 and ETB2 ‘Today’ and ‘Teleberri’ will pay special attention to the announcements and proclamations of March 8, and will feature videos that explore the different aspects of women’s lives today, March 8 and earlier.
On Friday, March 6, all companies with more than 150 employees will look at last year’s decree requiring an equality plan and registration. According to the decree, starting with March 7, with the aforementioned plan, the Basque company will start, with more than 100 employees in 2021 and more than 50 employees in 2022. They will be released on Saturday, March 7th. In light of the strength of feminism over the past two years, it will ask citizens to highlight changes.
The rest of the current events, ‘On Good Euskadi’, ‘Ahoz Aho’, ‘En Jake’ and ‘Qué Me Estás Contando’, will also highlight various aspects related to the M8 from a social and political point of view, this Friday and next Monday. .
The ‘Word from the Tooth’ session on Sunday (ETB1 and eitb.eus) is offering a series of sections on women who have been featured in bertsolaritza throughout history. Specifically, on Sunday, March 8th, Eider Perez met with Ane Labaka and Miren Artetxere, discussing the publication Bertsolaritza re-imagining feminism. Likewise, Mikaela and Joxepa Inaxi Elizegi and Plazida Otaño from Asteasu will meet with Astea, and will give performances in Andoain, Arrasate, Lasarte-Oria and Pamplona.
Looking forward to the next few weeks, the Basque writer Lucia Baskaran will be interviewing the ‘Artefactua’ session on March 14, for the book “Cursed Bodies”; Durango poet Elena Olave will star in the March 21 episode, ‘Zeldak? from this body ‘the first book of poems called speech; and to conclude, on March 28, with the Spanish writer Karmele Jaio, Yolanda Mendiola will talk about the book ‘Aitaren casa’.
‘Las 11 de Bilbao’ report, in the ‘360º’ session
This Sunday, the 8th, the report ‘Las 11 de Bilbao’ will be shown in the ‘360º’ session presented by Eider Hurtado. It tells the story of some humble housewives in the Kalero neighborhood of Basauri, a story of women who pushed for the adoption of the 1985 Abortion Act.
In the evening, Petra Biondina Volpe will receive the award-winning ‘El divino divino’ (2017 film) on ETB2. The film focuses on a woman who fought for women’s suffrage in Switzerland in 1971. And then there will be a movie Tomatoes verdes fritos featuring Cathy Bates and Jessica Tandy.
Also on that day, at noon, there will be a major sporting event on ETB1 and eitb.eus: the semi-finals of the Women’s Master Cup Tournament will be offered live from Beasain. The ‘Boxing Stars’ will also host the semi-heavyweight world championship on Friday, March 6, between boxers Alicia Napoleon-Espinosa and Elin Cenderroos.
On March 8, Radio Euskadi, Euskadi Radios, Radio Victoria and Youth will also be monitoring the issues related to International Women’s Day. In Radio Euskadi, during the ‘Weekend Chronicle’, Ander Arzak will speak with the CEO of Bizkaia Bridge and a colleague of the company. Both are women and will explore the equality and differences between the two.
The ‘Más Que Palabras’ session, for its part, will offer the first full hour of Women’s Day. The most prominent women activists will interview the future of the movement to explore the challenges and the local and global impact. These include Irantzu Varela, Lidia Falcón, Nerea Barjola, Ziortza Karranza, June Fernández, Jose A. Perez, Bego Zabala, Ane Etxegoien, Marian Parra and Josetxu Riviere.
In Euskadi Radio, young people in the editorial staff are asked to interview elderly women. The difference between them will be heard in Saturday’s ‘Amarauna’. On Sunday, March 8, Euskadi Radio will also announce the announcements and events and events of the day.