Archive for June, 2008

Then and Now

Saturday, June 28th, 2008

In answer to a question from Christopher Price MP, Home Secretary Merlyn Rees said that under the control of the Metropolitan Police there are nine closed-circuit television cameras on fixed sites used mainly for crowd and traffic control.

Mr Rees added: "The Home Office has asked chief officers to satisfy themselves that the use of surveillance equipment is justified in all circumstances and is authorised at an appropriately senior level in the force. Chief officers are well aware of the sensitivity of material obtained in this way’.

Hansard 27/11/1978

Surveillance not to be used to catch litter droppers

Council leaders have been warned this week to stop using surveillance equipment to crack down on “trivial” matters such as “dog fouling and littering”.

In a letter sent to councils this week, Sir Simon Milton, Conservative chairman of the Local Government Association (LGA) called on authorities to undertake an urgent review of surveillance operations carried out under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA).

The letter stated that powers in the Act should only be used after “careful consideration” and that the required operations are “necessary and proportionate to prevent or detect a criminal offence”, as stipulated in the Act

Discovery of Amazon Tribe

Saturday, June 7th, 2008

JPBR-1707-3-B World Bank

Originally uploaded by
World Bank Photo Collection

Ten days ago news was released of the discovery of a tribe of Amzonian Indians in rainforest in the state of Acre in Western Brazil.

The last tribe to be contacted were the Murunahua tribe in neighbouring Peru, 50% of which subsequently died of colds and other illnesses.

With modern society on their doorstep the clock cannot be turned back, but they should be allowed the time and space to decide how and when they will interact with the 21st century. To that end they need to be protected from loggers, gas and oil speculators, and Evangelical Christians.

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