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Kyrgyzstan riots

21 March 2005

In Kyrgyzstan protestors are so furious, it's the police who are being beaten to death on the streets. Political unrest in this Central Asian country of 5 million people, is getting scant coverage in the international press, but openDemocracy staffer Ben Paarmann is keeping tabs on the tense situation in his blog. Ben worked for the International Foundation for Election Systems in Krygyzstan briefly in 2004, and is an editor of thinking-east.net a website by young academics about North Africa, Near and Middle East and Central Asia.

David Hayes contributes this link: Stakes rise in Kyrgyzstan uprising

Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals


To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

The NHS is a precious public institution. Any involvement from private companies should be open to public scrutiny and debate. We need more transparency during this pandemic – not less.


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