Kurds show their support to the Syrian revolution. An online campaign against tax increases in Costa Rica. And Barack Obama has released his first official campaign clip.
Kurds show their support to the Syrian revolution
This video was apparently filmed on Sunday in the city of Qamishli in eastern Syria, near to the Turkish border: a predominantly Kurdish region which has been the scene of regular demonstrations against the Bashar al-Assad regime.
Ever since Syrian Kurdish opposition figure Mechaal Tammo, was shot dead last month, many of the country’s Kurds have joined the opposition movement. As these online images suggest, his funeral was attended by tens of thousands of mourners.
This ethnic minority represents around 10 % of the Syrian population, and up until now has not played an active role in the popular uprising, it has been relatively spared by the regime and escaped repression, the authorities have even granted Syrian nationality for tens of thousands of stateless Kurds.
But the Syrian Kurds do remain politically divided and many have been complaining of discrimination for a number of years. Kawa Youssef, a young activist living in refuge in Great Britain, hopes the uprising will result in a better future for the Syrian Kurdish community, and it will become an autonomous region within a federal state.
Others are concerned the fall of the regime will not necessarily secure them a better future. Adib Abdulmajid is a Syrian Kurd living in exile in the Netherlands and does not appear confident the alignment of opposition groups, the Syrian National Council formed in Istanbul with Turkey’s blessing, will help improve the situation for the Kurdish community.
Costa Rica: online campaign against new taxes
'Costa Rica is a circus run by clowns, which makes a mockery of tax payers and where corruption is the norm", this is the online campaign message for the “Republica de Costa Risa” movement which is a play on words of the country’s name and translates as “Costa laughs”. The activists say the purpose of their online viral campaign is to protest government plans to increase taxes to finance the budget deficit.
The campaigners have made great use of the online tools available. A Facebook page which has drawn over 10 000 members and a Twitter thread have been set up to encourage citizens to join the movement and demand the authorities abandon their plans to increase taxes. The message has been relayed in this article posted on the official campaign site where the campaign organizers say the poorer households will be most affected by the mandatory tax increases.
The country’s web users are also being asked to send this prewritten email to their political representatives, expressing their opposition to any tax increase. It’s concise and slams the current management of the economy and reminds MPs they must listen to what the public wants.
And although this campaign appears to have reached a wide online audience, it has not been warmly received by all Costa Ricans. Blogger Oscar Cruz feels it creates a disastrous image of the country and does not give a realistic portrayal of the situation. He does not really see the point of the campaign and fears citizens and foreign investors will now have a sullied image of Costa Rica and its institutions.
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Now trending on social networks
#AEIOUY, the chorus from the 80s hit "Disco Samba" by the Belgian trio "Two Man Sound" is currently very popular on social networks in Italy… Web users have been sharing and circulating this track in reaction to the rumours which appeared in the press on Monday suggesting Silvio Berlusconi was about to resign. The video clip shows scantily clad dancers and is perceived as an allusion to the Italian prime Minister’s weakness for the ladies. Berlusconi is not faring well in opinion polls at the moment and has been hit by a major defection from his party.
Video of the day
With twelve months to go before the American presidential elections in November 2012, the current White House resident Barack Obama has released his first campaign clip online. It’s called “Yes, we can (again)", runs for just over two minutes and takes us back to the emotion and hope triggered by his coming to power, and what has been achieved during his mandate. The clip is seeking to persuade the people of America to once again put their trust in Barack Obama depicting him as the only one capable of pursuing the reforms implemented over the past four years.