July 15, 2004

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Peace activists will be able to rally during the Republican National Convention. Negotiations tomorrow with the New York City Police will determine where it will be. Leigh Ann Caldwell reports from WBAI.

U.S. diplomats are meeting with Pakistani officials hoping to negotiate more troops from Pakistan to Iraq as well as a way to steal headlines from the Democrats at home. Masror Hussein reports from Islamabad.

Another Coca Cola plant in India is being accused of sucking up the limited water supply by local protestors in a western desert state that only receives 50cm of annual rainfall. Binu Alex reports from Ahmedabad.

The United States Commission on Civil Rights is revisiting voter disenfranchisement in Florida.  Ambar Espinoza was attended the meeting in D.C.

Thousands of workers marched and held rallies across Peru yesterday. Reportedly, police arrested 76 demonstrators mostly for blocking streets.  The national work stoppage was called by leftist labor organizations that consider President Alejandro Toledo’s fee market policies an attack on what they call their right to “bread and justice.”  Many people said however that the protest would have been much larger but the Toledo government called out 93-thousand police officers in the capitol and deployed troops across the country.Government officials also issued a decree mandating worker’s pay would be docked if they missed work.


Project Bioshield
On Wednesday, the U.S. Congress overwhelmingly passed a project BioShield measure in which the government will pour 5.6 billion dollars into the pharmaceutical industry to develop drugs and vaccines in the case of a chemical or biological attack.  The measure passed the Senate in May and now it’s heading to President Bush, who has indicated his support of it.  Meanwhile, Senate is working on a measure  for a 13 billion dollar buyout for tobacco farmers. Mitch Jeserich has more.

Red Cross Report on Detainees
Following more allegations of violations of the Geneva  Conventions in the US-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, officials gave an update on ongoing detainee-related and senior-level investigations into these matters. Jenny Johnson has more.

Gay Marriage Reactions
Now that the Federal Marriage Amendment has been killed in the Senate, we focus on the LGBT immigrant community and how they are affect by current immigration policy. Currently, there are nearly 36,000 same sex bi-national couples in the US today, according to the 2000 Census. Such couples cannot petition or sponsor their foreign national partners to legally live in the United States. Dolores M. Bernal has more on this story from Washington DC.

International AIDS Conference
The 15th Annual International AIDS Conference is underway in Bangkok, Thailand. Demonstrators gathered at the summit to hold a mock trial of the world’s most industrialized nations at the entrance to the conference center, demanding cheaper drugs and more money to research treatments for the virus. On the agenda for the annual Conference is the implementation of strategies to combat HIV-AIDS. FSRN spoke with Kris Torgeson, Communications Director for Doctors without Borders, who is at the conference.

AIDS, God and Condoms
Here in the United States, the Bush Administration is  considering putting new strings on the money it gives to community groups that help to prevent the spread of AIDS. Under the proposed guidelines, organizations receiving money from the Centers for Disease Control would be required to emphasize abstaining from sex as the only way to prevent the spread of AIDS. Problems with condoms would also be emphasized. From KPFK, Aaron Glantz has the story.

Mad Pride Month
July is Mad Pride Month, modeled after Gay Pride, during which psychiatric survivors speak out about human rights abuses in the psychiatric industry. The Texas Medication Algorithm Project, or TMAP, may be one such abuse. A whistleblower says TMAP’s proponents have financial ties to the drug industry, friends in the White House, and that its pursuit of profit is causing an unseemly recruitment of new patients. Mental Health activists are awaiting an  announcement before July is out of a massive new screening program for the early detection of mental illness, especially in children. The expensive patented drugs in TMAP would be the favored course of treatment. Kellia Ramares has more.


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