Ricardo Mendoza, the driver of TV station Telesistema chief Carlos Muñoz Insua, was murdered on 9 February during an attempt to kill the journalist. Reporters Without Borders condemns the climate of violence and intimidation of the media since the beginning of the year. The station gave extensive coverage to listener protests about this and about a 1 February attempt to kill the president of the National Confederation of Indigenous Peoples (CONAIE). La Luna chief Paco Velasco was summoned on 4 February by the ethics committee of the national broadcasting supervisory body, AER. The next day, the government said it had no plans to get the station closed down.A strategy paper supposedly from the army intelligence service was sent to media outlets and political parties on 4 February listing journalists and media deemed subversive, including radio stations La Luna and Visión and the daily paper El Comercio. The army denied having anything to do with it. Reporters Without Borders expressed great concern today at the recent decline in press freedom in Ecuador and strongly condemned the murder of Ricardo Mendoza, the driver of Telesistema TV station chief Carlos Muñoz Insua, during an attempt to kill the journalist on 9 February. It also deplored the harassment in recent weeks of radio stations La Luna and Radio Quito.Two gunmen fired seven bullets at Muñoz Insua’s car as it was waiting at traffic lights in the southwestern city of Guayaquil. He was not hurt but Mendoza was killed. The self-styled terrorist group The Revolutionary People’s Militias (MRP) later claimed responsibility for the attack, accusing Telesistema of not broadcasting its statements. It said it would carry out further attacks and threatened other media and journalists. It said it regretted the death of Mendoza because he had not been their target.Miguel Rivadeneira, boss of Radio Quito, which is critical of the government, received five anonymous telephoned death threats on 26 and 27 January after broadcast of an interview with a general about arms smuggling involving the army.The 3 February evening news programme on the TV station Teleamazonas said the government was taking administrative measures to shut down the privately-owned radio station La Luna, which has criticised President Lucio Gutiérrez. The station strongly opposed the arrest of indigenous leader Humberto Cholango last December. News June 15, 2020 Find out more RSF_en News News Organisation Help by sharing this information to go further Receive email alerts Coronavirus “information heroes” – journalism that saves lives EcuadorAmericas Follow the news on Ecuador Two months before Assange’s extradition hearing, RSF calls for his release on humanitarian grounds and for US Espionage Act charges to be dropped News April 10, 2020 Find out more February 13, 2004 – Updated on January 20, 2016 TV station chief shot at and radio stations harassed EcuadorAmericas Coronavirus: State measures must not allow surveillance of journalists and their sources December 24, 2019 Find out more
Multiple agencies completed the investigation of a four-alarm fire at Playland’s Castaway Cove on the Ocean City Boardwalk and announced the preliminary findings on Monday.The incident was determined to be an accidental fire from an undetermined electrical source near the front of the building, according to a city press release.The Jan. 30 blaze destroyed the building that housed an arcade and offices for the amusement park, a juice bar, and the adjacent Dairy Queen and Hamburger Construction Company businesses. The structure was unoccupied, and no one was injured in fighting the fire.The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) National Response Team led the investigation with assistance from the Ocean City Fire Department Investigation Unit, Cape May County Fire Marshal’s Office, Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office and New Jersey State Fire Marshal’s Office.Investigators were able to use a pattern of fire alarms, eyewitness accounts, photos and videos, a detailed excavation of the site and examination of forensic evidence to determine the cause and area of origin for the fire and conclusively rule out other possible causes, the release stated.“On behalf of the Newark Field Division, I am extremely proud of and grateful for the level of expertise and resources our agents and the ATF National Response Team deploy to every investigation. As investigators, they dedicate their knowledge, skills, and abilities to each unique scene alongside our local, county, and state partners,” ATF Special Agent in Charge Charlie J. Patterson said in the release.He continued, “As demonstrated in this joint investigation, our partners can rest assured that ATF will continue leveraging our expertise to support investigations across multiple agencies and jurisdictions.”The outdoor area of Castaway Cove, including the amusement rides, was not damaged by the fire. The owner has stated that he will be able to open the park this year while rebuilding the structure. The fire destroyed the Boardwalk entrance to Playland’s Castaway Cove and a building containing the amusement park’s arcade.
(REUTERS) – U.S. Open organisers said on Wednesday they will include a wheelchair tournament at this year’s Grand Slam following a player backlash over their decision to scrap the event as part of measures to curb the spread of COVID-19.The United States Tennis Association’s announcement comes five days after the national governing body said it was rethinking their decision and that it could have better communicated with wheelchair athletes.“The decision was made following multiple virtual meetings with a group of wheelchair athletes and the International Tennis Federation over the last week,” the USTA said in a statement.“The 2020 U.S. Open Wheelchair Competition will feature men’s and women’s singles and doubles and quad singles and doubles, with draw sizes similar to past U.S. Opens.”Australian Paralympic tennis champion Dylan Alcott, who led the player backlash and had described the exclusion as “disgusting discrimination”, thanked organisers for reversing the decision.“I was in tears (when the event was excluded),” the twice U.S. Open champion said on Australia’s Channel Nine.“It was just because it was so hard sometimes, growing up with a disability, where able-bodied people decide which restaurant you go in to, which school you go in to, which tennis tournaments you can play.“It’s a huge turning point to show how supportive a community can be and from the bottom of my heart, I can’t say thanks enough.”The changes at this year’s U.S. Open in New York include no spectators, reducing the number of teams in the men’s and women’s doubles events by half, and the elimination of the mixed doubles and juniors competitions.
It’s been painfully explained to all of us that “Touchdown” Tim Tebow was so mechanically flawed, he couldn’t wing it as an NFL quarterback/fullback/fair-catch receiver following a glorious Heisman college career.We take a knee to reflect on that. Ready? Break!How, then, does it illogically follow that he must have a better skill set to be a professional baseball player at this stage of his athletic metamorphosis based on a glorious high school career?Scouts for all 30 MLB teams have been invited to what they will try to keep as an undisclosed spot in L.A. on Tuesday for a “showcase” of Tebow’s talents beyond T-ball skill level. Matt Kemp and Yasiel Puig might be Grade-A athletes in the skill department, but put them in the confines of a baseball diamond that demands more than just five tools and the ability to work with teammates to achieve a common goal, and you can see the problems.• Sure, MLB teams occasionally have open tryouts and can scoop up someone who’s under the radar to develop, if things fall right — apparently, starting with age. A 29-year-old Tebow could actually reveal himself to be a decent player with some seasoning, but who has the time to wait and see? That’s another strike against him.The Dodgers are said to have already scouted Tebow. The Angels, who once drafted Bo Jackson, also nearly once drafted Tebow.If they really wanted to reality-show-up this event, why not see if Tim Lincecum has some time to throw BP to Tebow? Maybe the Angels would be re-interested. Even consider Ryan Lochte or Dennis Rodman dropping by to shag infield popups.If all that happens from this is Tebow uses this is a tryout to land him on the next “Dancing With the Stars,” could it be ruled a success?And is Tebow a bachelor by any chance?• An immediate concern from Dodgers fans at the moment: If the Think Blue Think Tank was callous enough to interrupt a momentum of the team recapturing the NL West lead by sending A.J. Ellis away for another backup catcher that could claim somewhat better numbers, does this mean Clayton Kershaw isn’t going to pitch again this season?Ellis may have polished off far more of Kershaw’s career gems than current starting catcher Yasmani Grandal, but Kershaw’s winning percentage and ERA are pretty equal between the two. Ellis may be the Cy Young Award winner’s “personal catcher” and best friend on the team, and this may irk Kershaw to no end, but if they’re just going to shut him down the rest of the season, why not pull the trigger and team chemistry be damned?And you don’t think that Thursday night, near-no-hit funk against the Giants was any kind of result of the Ellis pregame trade?• One more thing here: If the Dodgers could have put Ellis on this expandable disabled list that they constantly manipulate as a roster loophole/waiting room, then activate him when rosters expanded to 40 on Sept. 1, why wasn’t that done? They couldn’t find another player match for the Phillies to pull off Carlos Ruiz coming to L.A. as a late party rental?It’s a business, we are constantly reminded. The Dodgers, who once traded Jackie Robinson to the Giants (he declined and retired instead), and released Fernando Valenzuela out of spring training, and told Orel Hershiser he was no longer needed after the 1994 strike, and traded Paul LoDuca at the 2004 deadline, have reasons for doing what they do.They don’t have to explain it to us. Do they? Not if their bottom line is trying to field the best team possible.(Heck, the Red Sox traded away Nomar Garciaparra at that ’04 deadline, and ended up winning their first World Series in forever).But in retrospect, did the front office just give this group of players something more to rally around — don’t just win it for Vin, but also win it for A.J.? • Meanwhile, where have you gone, Johnny Giavotella?At one point in the season, he was good enough to hit in the No. 5 spot because he was the only Angel below the Trout-Pujols line who seemed to know how to put the ball in play. Now a team spark plug goes unplugged so a variety of younger fill-ins can show their worth as the season plays out.Another biz decision, sure. But sometimes, do fans really get over it?• Does the Lakers’ signing of Yi Jianlian even cast a faint scent like a move designed to keep its logo and branding abilities affluent in China since Kobe Bryant no longer is the lead purple-and-gold ambassador? Or does that even translate?• Having seen too many businesses go under after investing in the tenuous stadium and arena naming rights deals, can we bank on the Banc of California having enough overdraft protection after it agreed to pay out $100 million for the marquee above the new Los Angeles Football Club facility? Or will their ATMs now ding customers with $15 per transaction?• How awkward would it be for your Los Angeles Rams had they drafted defensive end Joey Bosa instead of QB Jared Goff and then had it become the “Hard Knocks” ongoing story?• The Raiders may have doubled down in Vegas — applying for some trademark rights and narrowing down stadium builders — but don’t the wise guys in the Nevada desert realize there’s a franchise DNA about making promises to cities but eventually running back to their comfort zone when things get close?• One can only hope Hope Solo attempts to learn something — again — after this six-month suspension from U.S. Soccer for her emotionally cowardly comments during the Rio Games. But what incentive does the 35-year-old have of even making a comeback after this punishment expires? Isn’t it obvious she’s no longer wanted? Want to guess there’ll be more curious media members than serious talent evaluators?The evaluation process has already started.“Somebody needs to say it: The rollout of Tim Tebow, would-be baseball player, is just silly,” ESPN’s Buster Olney wrote this week. “It’s coming off to some baseball executives more like the pilot of a reality show than an earnest effort to create a career in a sport he has not played professionally.“Tebow doesn’t need a showcase. He doesn’t need to send out invitations to scouts to watch. He needs to play baseball. He needs to play games.”That’s been a suggestion offered more often than not, since it has worked before with other newbies/retreads and really appears to be a better way to reveal someone’s nuanced baseball IQ, which hardly comes out in a football-type combine production number. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error