Russia: Media co-founder’s poisoning must be properly investigated, RSF says

first_img Two Russian journalists persecuted for investigating police corruption Russia is ranked 148th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2018 World Press Freedom Index. Verzilov, who participated in a Pussy Riot protest during the World Cup final in Moscow in July, was hospitalized on 11 September after suddenly losing his sight, the ability to speak and control over his movements. Читать на русском / Read in RussianReporters Without Borders (RSF) calls for a full and impartial investigation into the poisoning of Pyotr Verzilov, a well-known activist and co-founder of the Mediazona news website, who was trying to shed light on the murders of three Russian journalists in the Central African Republic when he was hospitalized in Moscow last week. Organisation September 20, 2018 – Updated on September 21, 2018 Russia: Media co-founder’s poisoning must be properly investigated, RSF says May 21, 2021 Find out more His ex-wife, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, a member of the feminist protest group Pussy Riot, yesterday confirmed reports in various independent Russian media outlets that he had been investigating the murders of the three Russian journalists. He had received a report about their deaths the day before he became very ill, she said. Pussy Riot says it is convinced that Verzilov was deliberately poisoned. RussiaEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses Armed conflictsCouncil of EuropeInternetViolence News He and the three other Pussy Riot members briefly interrupted the final by invading the pitch to draw attention to their demands, which included the release of Russian political prisoners. They were sentenced to 15 days in prison. “Given Pyotr Verzilov’s sensitive activities, a full and impartial investigation into this strange case of poisoning is indispensable,” said Johann Bihr, the head of RSF’s Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk. “All possible light should be shone on this affair, as it should be on the murders of the three Russian journalists that he was investigating.”The three journalists – documentary filmmaker Alexander Rastorguyev, war reporter Orkhan Dzhemal and cameraman Kirill Radchenko – were investigating the presence of Russian mercenaries and mining companies in the Central African Republic when they were murdered there in late July. June 2, 2021 Find out more News News Russian media boss drops the pretence and defends Belarus crackdown center_img They said his symptoms made it “highly plausible” that he was poisoned by a nerve agent. Certain recreational drugs could have had this effect but only in such a volume that they would have to have been taken with suicidal intent, and there was no indication of this in Verzilov’s case, the doctors said. Help by sharing this information After four days, he was transferred to a hospital in Germany where doctors say his life is no longer in danger and that the damage to his body and nervous system should be reversible. Follow the news on Russia Related documents russie_verzilov_ru.pdfPDF – 65.26 KB No suspects have so far been arrested and several groups of journalists and activists are investigating their deaths. Verzilov, who was a friend of Rastorguyev, has also raised funding for an on-the-spot investigation. RSF_en RSF_EECA May 5, 2021 Find out more to go further Receive email alerts Mediazona, the news site that Verzilov co-founded, is a leading source of information about police and judicial abuses in Russia. But it was his participation in the Pussy Riot protest at the World Cup final that attracted the media’s attention this summer. Listed as a “foreign agent”, Russia’s most popular independent website risks disappearing RussiaEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses Armed conflictsCouncil of EuropeInternetViolence News Credit: Vasily Maximov / AFP last_img read more

St Albans wins growth center approval

first_imgThe City of St. Albans now has a state-designated Growth Center, a move that will help streamline permitting for future development and pave the way for additional benefits to support development in the town.The Vermont Downtown Development Board approved the city’s Growth Center plan at its meeting on Tuesday, setting the boundaries of the district roughly the same as the city limits.“Growth Center designation is a very important step for St. Albans,” said Kevin Dorn, Secretary of Commerce and Community Development and chairman of Vermont Downtown Development Board. “While the city might seem pretty well built out, there is in fact a lot of development opportunity on brownfield sites, infill, and underdeveloped sites.”St. Albans becomes the sixth municipality to obtain growth center and joins Williston, Bennington, Colchester, Montpelier and Hartford.“The City has recently completed a Master Plan for Downtown Development that identified ten key redevelopment sites in the City,” said Dominic Cloud, City Manager.  “This new designation is an important tool in our conversations with developers.”Growth Centers were signed into law by Governor Jim Douglas in 2006 to encourage communities to plan for denser and mixed use development in appropriate areas. Designated communities receive benefits under Act 250, including development in the growth center given greater options to comply with requirements to mitigate the impact on prime agricultural soils and some projects possibly being exempted from review.Municipalities with a designated Growth Center may also more easily meet the requirements for a Tax Increment Financing District, which allow the town to keep some of the additional property tax revenues generated by development instead of sending them all to the state, a program designed to support investment in water, wastewater and transportation infrastructure.To gain this designation St. Albans had to demonstrate to the Downtown Board that it had undertaken a rigorous planning process that ensured state standards would be met, including:That it meets the statutory definition of a Growth Center, as demonstrated in the Town Plan and is implemented in the Town’s bylaws;  That the Town has or has planned for the roads, water and wastewater systems, and other infrastructure necessary to support the planned growth;That the Growth Center be adjacent to and support an existing Designated Downtown or Village Center;That the Growth Center be compact, dense and protect natural and historic resources both within and outside the growth center;That it be designed to accommodate a majority of growth anticipated by the municipality over the next twenty years; and include a mix of uses, including affordable housing.For more information about the Growth Centers Program, please visit: http://www.dhca.state.vt.us/Planning/GrowthCenters.htm(link is external)Source: Commerce Agency. 7.30.2010last_img read more