Japan’s anti-nuclear movement gaining ground. Syrian activists campaigning for the release of the “Brides of Peace”. And Playboy founder Hugh Hefner has been sharing his wedding photos on Twitter.
Japan: anti-nuclear protests continue
The conservatives return to power in Japan following last month’s election, will no doubt see a revival of the country’s nuclear industry. The new Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has announced plans to reactivate most of the nation’s nuclear reactors shut down in the wake of the Fukushima disaster in March 2011. He also intends to build new generation power plants.
Anti-nuclear sentiment is strong in Japan following Fukushima and many are concerned by the government’s plans. This online petition, started by the “Goodbye to Nuclear” NGO has been signed by over 8 million people over the past few months, including some well-known faces like Kenaburo Oé who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1994.
And the campaigning isn’t just taking place online. Demonstrators have been taking to the streets of Japan on a regular basis, demanding a nuclear phase out and the introduction of alternative energy sources, this protest was staged last month in the town of Fukuoka in the south west. The rallies are coordinated via social networks, and generally speaking the majority of activists are women.
Yes at the forefront of the movement: Mothers who fear for their children’s health. It was a woman Yukiko Kada, who founded the “Tomorrow Party of Japan”, the country’s first anti-nuclear party. And despite a poor performance in the general election, with only nine members being re-elected to parliament, the political group will be focusing its efforts on supporting a movement which up until has received little political attention.
Syria: where are the missing "Brides of Peace"?
In recent weeks numerous web users have been voicing concern for four female peace activists: Rima Dali, Roua Jaafar, and sisters Kinda and Loubna Zaour, who are being held in Syria in an undisclosed location. Their crime: staging a march in Damascus on the 21st November condemning the bloodshed across the country.
They were wearing wedding dresses and carrying banners demanding an end to all military operations in Syria, they marched through a market in the capital, where they were applauded by passersby. A brave act which lasted just a few minutes, as they were soon stopped and detained by security forces.
Now known as the « Brides of Peace » the activists’ arrest sparked a wave of indignation on social networks. Web users have been campaigning for their release by posing for photos and posting them online, some of them also wearing wedding dresses.
Campaigning is also underway on a Facebook page set up for one of the imprisoned « brides » Rima Dali. The 32 year old Alawite had already made the news back in April when she protested alone in front of the Syrian parliament building holding a banner that read “'Stop the killing, so we can build a country for all Syrians". She was arrested on the spot and released 48 hours later.
Very basic programming, not a lot to look at and limited playability: North Korea has made its first video game for western release, it’s called “Pyongyang racer”. You have to steer a car though the streets of Pyongyang, with just one objective collect fuel in the form of petrol barrels to keep the car running. The virtual trip around the North Korean capital, which you can play for free online, was developed to promote tourism in the country.
Now trending on social networks
86 year old Playboy founder, Hugh Hefner married Cristal Harris, 60 years his junior in London on New Year’s Eve. And he shared the happy occasion with his many fans across the globe by posting photos of the ceremony and his third wife to his Twitter account. The pics have received many comments, with the most web users taking the opportunity to congratulate the couple and wish them well.
Video of the day
Boeing has launched a new application called “Dream Pass” placing you in the flight deck for the takeoff or landing of a Boeing 787 Dreamliner. It consist of an interactive video which tells you all you need to know about this huge airliner, and will no doubt be a great hit with trainee pilots and aeronautical enthusiasts everywhere.