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Latest update : 2010-02-23

French web users debate prison suicide

In this edition: French web users debate prison suicide as well as the safety of prisoners and the blogosphere reacts to the military coup in Niger.

 

FRANCE: SUICIDES IN PRISON
 
The suicide of prisoner Jean-Pierre Treiber, suspected of a double murder in 2004 has re sparked debate on prison conditions in France, as well as the safety of prisoners. The web reacts.
 
This blogger explains that unfortunately, prison suicide is far from being a new phenomenon. He says that in 2009, 115 prisoners took their own lives. He attributes these acts of despair partly to overcrowding and the appalling state of French prisons which are often run down.
 
The author of this article, available on the site Agoravox, agrees. He states that the suicide rate among prisoners is 4 to 5 times higher than the rest of the population. A disturbing figure which he believes could be lowered if the French prison system worked on preventative measures.
 
But faced with the authorities’ inaction and the renewed outbreak of these desperate acts, the French association “Ban Public’ decided to create a monitoring system for prison suicide. The association is inviting web users to sponsor a prisoner, to help them maintain a certain dignity during their imprisonment and to keep the will to live.
 
Finally, several videos like this one are currently circulating on the web. They denounce the lack of privacy and the general wretchedness of French prisons. Conditions which sometimes generate violence towards others and often towards oneself.
 
REACTIONS TO COUP IN NIGER
 
The military leaders who seized power in Niger on Thursday have said that they would like to stabilize the political situation in the country before organizing the elections. The president Mamadou Tandja is still being held by the junta. And if the international community has condemned the coup, reactions on the web appear to be mixed.
 
This blogger not surprised by the putsch. He remembers that the deposed president had modified the constitution in 2009 in order to remain in power for another 3 years. A decision that some perceived as an institutional coup.
 
This French woman living in Niger even goes as far as to say that the majority of Nigeriens support the military. She thinks this explains the small number of incidents since the junta seized power. She says the country is remaining cautious however and wants life to get back to normal.
 
Several videos, like these ones, have appeared on sharing sites. They were filmed in the capital, Niamey, and suggest that many Nigeriens support the junta and their seizure of power.
 
This Nigerien man applauds the coup and thanks the military for having guaranteed democracy by stopping president Tandja from overriding the constitution. However, he also shares his concerns over how long the junta’s declared transition period will last.
 
The author of this blog is less extreme. He hopes that more than anything, the coup will reestablish democracy in the country and that the military will remain neutral in the process.
 
PLEASE ROB ME
 
You are going on holiday and you’ve posted the news on social networks. But be careful: this information could be used by a robber who would waste no time in benefiting from your absence to go and visit your home. This site lists all the messages from web users which say that their homes are empty. The site hopes to show the risks we expose ourselves to when we divulge details of our private life on the Internet.
 
 
THE EARTH SEEN FROM SPACE
 
For a month now, astronauts aboard the International Space station have been benefiting from private access to the Internet. Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi is among them and is sharing his experience and photos on Twitter. He regularly publishes shots of the earth seen from space. From the artificial islands of Bahrain to Mount Kilimanjaro, his photos will take your breath away.
 
 
VIDEO OF THE DAY
 
A young rabbit is invited to dinner with his elders to be initiated into the exclusive circle of magicians’ rabbits, but a wolf is lying in wait, watching for the right moment to join the party. Directed by a young Danish artist for his graduation project, “Out of a Forest” in a short film, shot in stop motion, which has the particularity of being filmed at night in the forest.
 

 

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