As trial of 44 journalists resumes, court continues to ban use of Kurdish

first_img Turkey’s never-ending judicial persecution of former newspaper editor November 13, 2012 – Updated on January 20, 2016 As trial of 44 journalists resumes, court continues to ban use of Kurdish to go further Follow the news on Turkey April 2, 2021 Find out more Journalists threatened with imprisonment under Turkey’s terrorism law April 2, 2021 Find out more RSF_en TurkeyEurope – Central Asia The trial of 44 journalists and other employees of Kurdish media accused of being members of a “media committee” operated by the outlawed Union of Communities in Kurdistan (KCK) resumed yesterday in Istanbul after a two-month break.Reporters Without Borders, which attended the hearing, reiterates its call for the release of the 34 defendants who are still detained – and have been since 20 December 2011 – and for them to be given interpreters and allowed to testify in Kurdish.“The right to a fair trial includes the right to use one’s own language in court,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Article 6.3 of the European Convention on Human rights says that ‘everyone charged with a criminal offence’ has the right to ‘the free assistance of an interpreter if he cannot understand or speak the language used in court.’ “By ignoring this right and systematically abusing provisions for preventive detention, Turkey is yet again violating its international obligations. This refusal can only exacerbate the already existing tension, which is far from conducive to the dispassionate atmosphere in which trials should be conducted.“It is with hope that we greet the bill that the ruling AKP party submitted last night, which envisages the possibility for defendants to use their native language. But, as the KCK trial shows, turning this possibility into a reality is a matter of the utmost urgency.”Yesterday’s hearing began with a roll-call of the defendants, to which each of them replied “Az livir im” (“Present” In Kurdish). When addresses were verified, the journalists Fatma Koçak, Nilgün Yildiz and Semiha Alankus refused to speak in Turkish and, speaking in Kurdish, requested interpreters. Not understanding, presiding judge Ali Alçik asked them to sit down.The judge then refused to allow one of the defendants, Kenan Kirkaya, the Ankara representative of the DIHA (Tiger) news agency, to address the court about the declining health of his colleagues who are on hunger strike. Kirkaya just had time to say the hunger strikers were demanding the right to use their own language in court before being expelled by the judge on the grounds that “hunger strikes are irrelevant.” All but one of the defendants then left the court in protest.All of the 44 defendants have joined the hunger strike in recent weeks. The condition of at least three of them is now very worrying. Reporters Without Borders reiterates its concern about their health and their survival, and appeals again to all sides to begin a dialogue in order to avoid the worst.Despite last July’s law reform, under which judges are encouraged to use alternative control methods to preventive detention, 34 of the defendants – who work for DIHA, Özgür Gündem (Free Agenda), Azadiya Welat (Free Country) and Demokrat Modernite (Democratic Modernity) – have been held for nearly 11 months although the trial has only just begun.Yesterday’s hearing was attended by a European parliamentary delegation consisting of the chair of the EU-Turkey parliamentary delegation, Hélène Flautre, and the Polish MEP Jaroslaw Walesa. Those attending also included Turkish Press Council representatives Orhan Birgit and Turgut Kazan, parliamentary representatives of the Kurdish party BDP, and local representatives of Human Rights Watch and Reporters Without Borders.Several of the defence lawyers such as Ercan Kanar and Rusen Mahmutoglu urged the court to dismiss the case if it was unable to make any headway.“You will not succeed in establishing order in the courtroom by force,” Kanar said. “A trial cannot be held under the shadow of firearms. Our clients are on (hunger) strike to defend their universal rights. You cannot even bear to listen to them. They are approaching death but no step has been taken by the authorities.”Judge Alçik said he would listen to no one and intended to proceed with the reading of the 800-page indictment. As announced, reading of the indictment began after all the defendants and lawyers had left the courtroom except Vatan reporter Cagdas Ulus and his lawyer.Reading of the indictment continued today. News Newscenter_img (Picture: Bülent Kilic / AFP) Receive email alerts News Read our previous statements on this case: – 13.09.2012 – In mass trial, journalists get two more months in jail, public barred from court- 10.09.2012 – Authorities asked to stop criminalizing journalism as trial of 36 detained pro-Kurdish journalists gets under way- 20.12.2011 – Police arrest 40 journalists on suspicion of Kurdish separatist linksRead Reporters Without Borders’ recommendations in the report: “A book is not a bomb! Media and justice in Turkey – mistrust and repression” (June 2011) Human rights groups warns European leaders before Turkey summit Organisation TurkeyEurope – Central Asia April 28, 2021 Find out more News Help by sharing this information last_img read more

HSE urging everyone to adhere to Public Health Guidelines

first_img Facebook HSE urging everyone to adhere to Public Health Guidelines DL Debate – 24/05/21 Google+ Previous articleDisappointment as two flood projects for Twin Towns refused fundingNext articleFG & FF set to agree a framework document on grand coalition News Highland Google+ By News Highland – April 10, 2020 Pinterest Harps come back to win in Waterford Homepage BannerNews Twitter WhatsAppcenter_img WhatsApp News, Sport and Obituaries on Monday May 24th Journey home will be easier – Paul Hegarty Important message for people attending LUH’s INR clinic The HSE is urging everyone to continue to adhere to the Public Health Guidelines.The Crisis Management Team (CMT) co-ordinating all HSE Services across the CHO 1 area which covers Donegal in the fight to identify, contain and stop the spread of Covid 19 has appealed to the general public to continue adhering to the public health guidelines over the Easter Bank holiday weekend.The Crisis Management Team includes participation from Letterkenny University Hospital and Sligo University Hospital.The CMT has moved to assure communities in counties Donegal that extensive preparations for the impact of Covid-19 are in place. Some of the measures activated include:Increasing bed capacity across our acute hospitals and community hospitals/residences to provide additional ICU beds, acute beds, intermediate and step-down beds.Operating Covid 19 Testing Centres and providing a Contact Tracing Service.Preparations for the opening of four Community Assessment Hubs for patients who are Covid positive and need a face to face clinical assessment which will begin to open next week.Infection Prevention and Control Team Covid Response Plan & Measures implemented across all ServicesIdentifying self-isolation units across the area, should they be needed and supporting Community Response Forums in each County which are being led by the Local Authorities.They are also reminding the public that they are still providing essential/vital services to the population and that visiting restrictions are in place in all hospitals and residential centres.Staff are doing everything possible to support patients and residents to keep in contact with family and friends. Facebook RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Twitter Pinterest Arranmore progress and potential flagged as population growslast_img read more

Judge to rule on unsealing records in defamation case against Ghislaine Maxwell

first_imgKuzma/iStockBy JAMES HILL, ABC News(NEW YORK) — As Ghislaine Maxwell sits in a federal detention center in Brooklyn, New York, facing allegations that she conspired with the late Jeffrey Epstein to sexually abuse three minor girls, a federal judge in Manhattan is set to announce her decision Thursday morning whether to make public a batch of sealed court documents from a civil lawsuit against Maxwell that settled three years ago.The court filings in the case — a civil defamation lawsuit filed by Virginia Roberts Giuffre against Maxwell in 2015 — are said to contain the names of hundreds of people, some famous and some not, who socialized, traveled or worked with Epstein over the span of more than a decade. The late financier has previously been linked to a coterie of high-profile business leaders, scientists, royalty and politicians, including former President Bill Clinton and current President Donald Trump.Attorneys for Maxwell had asked the judge — prior to Maxwell’s arrest — to keep the records under seal, arguing that public interest in the documents is outweighed by privacy considerations and the potential impact a release of the documents could have on the criminal investigation targeting alleged accomplices of Epstein.“The sealed testimony or summaries may inappropriately influence potential witnesses or alleged victims,” Maxwell’s attorney Jeffrey Pagliuca wrote last month.Among the records now being considered for release is a 418-page transcript of one of Maxwell’s multi-hour depositions in the case, which Maxwell’s attorneys argue were given under an expectation of confidentiality that had been agreed to by both sides in the dispute, according to Maxwell’s court filing.“This series of pleadings concerns [Giuffre’s] attempt to compel Ms. Maxwell to answer intrusive questions about her sex life,” Pagliuca wrote. “The subject matter of these [documents] is extremely personal, confidential, and subject to considerable abuse by the media.”Giuffre’s attorneys have argued for near-total disclosure of the sealed records and have characterized Maxwell’s objections as a “blatant attempt to stall the unsealing process by creating unjustified obstacles … that will ensure the documents in this case, which are clearly subject to a presumption of public access, never see the light of day,” according to a filing last month by Giuffre’s lawyer, Sigrid McCawley.McCawley contended that Maxwell’s arguments in favor of continued sealing are “especially jarring in light of the public’s interest in this litigation, which involved voluminous documents and testimony about Jeffrey Epstein’s transcontinental sex-trafficking operation and documents concerning various public agencies’ utter failure to protect and bring justice to his victims.”The sealed records currently under review by Senior U.S. District Court Judge Loretta Preska also contain the identities of people who provided information in the case under an expectation of confidentiality, plus the names of alleged victims and individuals accused of enabling Epstein or participating in the abuse.Earlier this year, notification letters were sent to two “John Does,” anonymous individuals whose names are among several dozen that appear in just the first batch of hundreds of sealed and redacted documents, according to court records. Neither of the “John Does” filed any objections to the potential unsealing of the records.Maxwell, 58, is the daughter of the late British publishing magnate Robert Maxwell, who died in 1991 in what was ruled an accidental drowning incident off the coast of the Canary Islands. She met Epstein in New York following her father’s death, and the two were closely linked for more than a decade.In unsealed excerpts from her depositions in the case, Maxwell derided Giuffre as an “absolute liar.” She has also denied allegations from Giuffre and other women who contend in court filings that Maxwell recruited and trained girls and young women for Epstein and facilitated their abuse.Federal prosecutors have alleged in Maxwell’s criminal case that she made false statements during her depositions in the Giuffre case, leading to two perjury charges in the indictment against her.Maxwell has pleaded not guilty to all the charges against her and is scheduled for trial next year.Among the records now under consideration by Preska are documents from June 2016 associated with an effort by Giuffre’s lawyers to get court approval for additional witness depositions beyond the 10 that had been allotted to each side. In a series of court filings surrounding the request, redactions conceal the name of one of the proposed witnesses and the descriptions of the information sought from that person.But a review by ABC News of the unredacted portions of the records, coupled with a transcript of a hearing that took place nine months later, reveal that Giuffre’s lawyers were then seeking court approval to depose former President Clinton about his prior relationship with Epstein.“All of the people Ms. Giuffre seeks to depose have discoverable and important information regarding the elements of Ms. Giuffre’s claims,” attorney McCawley wrote in a filing seeking the additional depositions.While there have been no allegations of wrong-doing on the part of Clinton, Giuffre’s claim that she met the former president at a dinner with Epstein and Maxwell on Epstein’s private Caribbean island, Little St. James, emerged as a critical and contentious issue in the litigation.Maxwell had argued in court filings that Giuffre’s claim was a fabrication that shattered her credibility. Flight logs kept by Epstein’s pilots showed that Clinton had traveled extensively on Epstein’s private jet to destinations in Africa, Asia and Europe in 2002 and 2003, but none of the available records showed the former president on a trip to Epstein’s island.“This is utter nonsense and nothing more than a transparent ploy by [Giuffre] to increase media exposure for her sensational stories through deposition side-show. This witness has nothing relevant to add,” Maxwell’s attorney Laura Menninger wrote in opposition to the proposed deposition.According to that filing by Maxwell’s lawyer, Giuffre’s legal team initiated informal discussions with attorneys for the then-unnamed witness on June 9, 2016.Giuffre’s lawyers did contact Clinton’s attorneys about a potential deposition, a person familiar with the situation told ABC News. Clinton’s lawyer responded that it would not be helpful to Giuffre, the person said, because the president was never on the island. For whatever reason, her lawyers dropped the matter, the person said.But according to a publicly-available transcript of a hearing in the case — Giuffre’s lawyers continued to pursue the court’s permission to take Clinton’s deposition until their request was ultimately denied by the judge, in a still sealed ruling in late June 2016Giuffre’s lawyers pressed the Clinton issue with the judge at a hearing in March 2017, six weeks before the trial was scheduled to begin. According to the transcript, Giuffre’s legal team was then seeking to prevent Maxwell’s side from presenting testimony at trial suggesting that Clinton hadn’t been on Epstein’s island, arguing it would be “inherently unfair” to Giuffre because they had not been permitted to question Clinton.“You did not allow us to depose him because you said it was irrelevant,” McCawley argued before U.S. District Court Judge Robert Sweet. “So now we’re in a position where at trial they want to put forth that information against my client, and I don’t have an under-oath statement from that individual saying whether or not he actually was.”“What we know is [Clinton] flew with Jeffrey Epstein at the same time 19 different times internationally and nationally, but we don’t have him with respect to this particular allegation under oath,” she added. “So we would say it would be highly prejudicial for them to be able to introduce evidence saying he wasn’t there or that they have some proof or some expert saying he wasn’t there when, in fact, we weren’t able to ask him directly, the person who is at issue, under oath, whether or not he did, in fact, go there.”Maxwell’s attorneys, according to the transcript, told the court Maxwell was prepared to take the stand and testify that Clinton was never on the island.But because the trial never occurred, Giuffre’s motion to exclude testimony about Clinton was left unresolved. More information about the debate over the issue may eventually become public as additional documents from the case are unsealed.Following Epstein’s arrest last July, a spokesperson for Clinton, Angel Ureña, said in a statement that the former president “knows nothing” about Epstein’s crimes.“He’s not spoken to Epstein in well over a decade,” the statement adds, “and has never been to Little St. James Island, Epstein’s ranch in New Mexico, or his residence in Florida.”Giuffre, now a 36-year old mother living in Australia, alleges she was sexually abused as a teenager by Epstein and Maxwell between 2000 and 2002. She also claims to have been directed to have sex with some of their prominent friends, including Britain’s Prince Andrew. Both the Prince and Maxwell have denied Giuffre’s allegations.Giuffre filed the action against Maxwell in September 2015, alleging that the former British socialite defamed her when her publicist issued a statement referring to Giuffre’s allegations as “obvious lies.”Previously unsealed records from the case have already generated headlines around the world after a federal appeals court ordered the release of more than 2,000 pages of documents last August, a month after Epstein’s arrest by federal authorities in New York. The Miami Herald spear-headed the legal challenge to make the filings public.Included in that collection were excerpts from Giuffre’s depositions naming several prominent men she alleges Epstein and Maxwell directed her to have sex with, including Prince Andrew, attorney Alan Dershowitz, former U.S. Sen. George Mitchell and former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson. All of those men, and others accused by Giuffre, have denied the allegations.“The documents and exhibits should be carefully examined for the vivid, detailed and tragic story they tell in the face of cursory, bumper-sticker-like statements by those accused,” Giuffre’s attorney McCawley wrote in a statement on the day of the document’s release. “Virginia Roberts Giuffre is a survivor and a woman to be believed. She believes a reckoning of inevitable accountability has begun.”The morning after that first set of documents was made public, Epstein was found unresponsive in his jail cell in Manhattan, where he was being held pending trial on charges of child sex-trafficking and conspiracy. The cause of death was determined by the New York City medical examiner as suicide by hanging, though that ruling has been challenged by a forensic pathologist hired by Epstein’s brother, the sole-surviving heir to an estate valued at more than $600 million.Following those initial disclosures, a federal appeals court ordered the review of thousands more sealed court filings to determine which records should be made public. Preska was selected to oversee the process because Sweet, the original trial court judge, died last year at the age of 96. Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

From captivity to classroom

first_imgIt was an unimaginable, Kafkaesque ordeal. Iranian police arrested Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian and his wife, Yeganeh, on vague charges in July 2014. An Iranian journalist for The National, she was released a short time later, but Rezaian, an American who grew up in the Bay Area of California, remained locked away in a notorious prison for months, even spending several weeks in solitary confinement. He was convicted of espionage in October 2015 after what analysts outside Iran said was a show trial. Rezaian’s captivity became international news thanks to relentless efforts by his brother, Ali, Post executive editor Martin Baron, and others who took to social media via the hashtag #FreeJason to raise awareness of his plight and put pressure on top U.S. government officials, even as diplomatic negotiations heated up to strike what would become a landmark nuclear accord with Iran. In January, 543 days after his arrest, Rezaian was released along with three others as part of a prisoner swap in tandem with the controversial return to Iran of $400 million in frozen assets that had been held by the United States since the overthrow of Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi in 1979. Now back in the United States, Rezaian, 40, has avoided the spotlight and hasn’t spoken publicly about his experience. He’ll spend the academic year at Harvard as part of the 79th class of Nieman Fellows studying the evolution of U.S.-Iran relations. His wife will be a fellow at the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy this fall and write about the challenges facing female journalists in Iran. The couple recently spoke with the Gazette as they began their new lives in Cambridge.GAZETTE: How are you settling into campus life?REZAIAN: I love it. It’s been a long time since I’ve been on a campus, and all the schools I’ve attended have been very urban. Obviously, this is the campus, so it’s pretty exciting to be around it. For me, it’s just a lot of fun to experience that and see the undergraduates and their elation and anxiety about coming to a new place. I feel a lot of it as well. I think for me the challenge is going to be just keeping track after not having a lot of things to keep track of for a while (laughs).GAZETTE: What have you been up to since January?REZAIAN: I’ve been doing some writing for myself. I’m still with The Post on an extended leave.GAZETTE: Do you envision going back at some point?REZAIAN: I hope so. That’s the plan. I’m on staff. The news executives and I have spoken about not wanting to rush into assignments. Everybody’s been fantastic, and they said “You know what, let’s push it off until next year, and we can talk about it in early 2017.”GAZETTE: Outside of this fellowship, are you based now in D.C.?REZAIAN: For now. I’d never lived there before. I’d always lived in San Francisco; that’s where I grew up. And I had been in Tehran for seven years. But Yegi and I really love D.C., and I think ultimately that’s where we’ll probably end up. I had visited a few times in my early 20s and then eight or nine years ago. It’s a different town, and we’ve obviously had a really nice reception there since all of this happened to us, and it feels like the right place for us to probably lay some roots down for a while.GAZETTE: You haven’t spoken publicly yet about your experience? Why is that?REZAIAN: I’m planning on how I want to tell my own story. I feel like my situation and my experiences are unique in some ways. I was a journalist thrust into this really bizarre and, in some ways, incredible situation in the midst of the beat that I was covering. So I think unpacking this story is my job to do. I just have felt like it would be better to really process it and discover all the moving pieces before I reveal too much about what it was like.GAZETTE: You’re used to writing about other people. You know what to do, you know what to ask people, how to approach things and research things. How do you write about yourself, especially when you probably had the least information about what was happening?REZAIAN: Yeah. It’s difficult. There’s a lot of reporting I have to do. I’m always surprised when I read a story that’s reported from a great distance. And I think in this situation, to do justice to myself and my experience, I really have to be cognizant and mindful of really reporting it out and finding out what happened.GAZETTE: Were you surprised at the amount of attention your imprisonment received?REZAIAN: Oh yeah, sure. I had some knowledge from visits from my wife and my mom about the efforts that were being undertaken on my behalf, but there was no way in the isolation that I was experiencing that I could really comprehend the extent to which the support reached out in so many different directions.GAZETTE: Not just at the paper and your family and friends, but strangers. There was a hashtag #FreeJason going around, there was a letter to the Iranian government from famous academics like Noam Chomsky, Steven Pinker, and others, a petition signed by people who don’t even know you …REZAIN: More than half a million people!GAZETTE: It was a cause célèbre. You became the face of journalists who’ve been persecuted and attacked, which is many.REZAIAN: I think it’s a challenging mantle to carry. But it was a really overwhelming thing to come out and witness.GAZETTE: It must have been very rewarding to see how committed your family, friends, and even strangers were about you, working so hard to get you released?REZAIAN: That was for me really the most — I don’t know if gratifying is the right word. … The commitment of my family, my employers, my colleagues in the media [was] just above and beyond what anybody could ever ask for.GAZETTE: Will you or Yegi ever go back to Iran?REZAIAN: That’s such a hard question for me to answer. I think that I’m a really optimistic person, and I believe that we will. But a lot will have to happen globally and personally [laughs] before the stars would align.GAZETTE: Could you see yourself being a foreign correspondent somewhere else at some point?REZAIAN: I haven’t thought about it too much yet. I feel like I need to process and tell this story before I move on to other possible beats, but I can tell you I’m not going to stop writing.GAZETTE: I read that you went to Iran with the hope of telling stories that better reflected the complexity and richness of daily life there. Will you continue to do that in some fashion, if not from Iran? And why is that important to you?REZAIAN: For me, the best journalism is usually the best storytelling, and the best stories are those of real people. Sometimes those real people are people in positions of great prominence or power or adverse situations, and sometimes it’s just normal folks who help illuminate a situation, a place, a culture. And for me, that’s always been the best way of telling a story.GAZETTE: In your interview with Anthony Bourdain on CNN’s “Parts Unknown” [filmed a couple of weeks before his arrest], you sounded very optimistic and positive about where Iran is headed (politically, economically, socially). Do you still feel that way?REZAIAN: I think in any country you have macro situations and micro ones. Like a lot of places, it’s a country that’s evolving, and the thrust of that evolution I think is still being played out right now. And as I told you before, I’m a very hopeful person.GAZETTE: Bourdain said Iran wasn’t what he expected. What is it about Iran today that Americans don’t know, but should?Shorenstein Fellow Yeganeh Rezaian (left) and Nieman Fellow Jason Rezaian are pictured in front of Lippman House at Harvard University. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff PhotographerY. REZAIAN: I can just generally say that Iran is a very multilayered, controversial country. There are so many contrasts and controversies that question themselves within whole different layers. It’s not an easy place to wrap up in one answer or one question. It’s a very multicultural, multiethnic place. There are millions of things that if you never travel there, it’s easily possible that you never see or never hear of them. The people, culture, ideas, things that are happening in normal situations every day. It’s seven months that I’m here in America, and I just know that there’s a huge gap between the two nations. I’m not talking about the two governments. I’m just talking about the two nations. I just found that the knowledge of ordinary Americans about Iran is very small — which is totally expected.REZAIAN: And I think that response of “Wow, it’s so different than what I expected” is pretty much the response of every foreign visitor we ever had — and we had a lot of them. And it’s a big part of why I chose to do that job. I’ve been very clear about this over the years: “No value judgment. There’s great things about this country, there’s terrible things about this country. Here it is.” This is my interpretation of that.GAZETTE: Do ordinary Iranians view the U.S. government as darkly as many Americans view Iran’s?Y. REZAIAN: It’s difficult to generalize it. In terms of how Iranians see the U.S. government, that’s a difficult question. But in terms of how Iranians see Americans, there is a very good mutual belief that they have so much in common with American people and they feel totally related to them. In terms of government, definitely there are some hardcore hardliners who hate the U.S. government, but at the same time, there are some more moderate.GAZETTE: What attracted you both to Harvard, and what will you be doing?REZAIAN: This is incredible. It’s the greatest university in the world, and really the greatest program for journalists, so it was an incredible opportunity to be around some really accomplished and varied colleagues from different backgrounds covering different parts of the world and bringing different skills and talents. I’m just really excited to be a part of it. I’m going to try and soak up as much as I can and try to get smarter. [Laughs.]Y. REZAIAN: For me, I feel totally honored and blown away just to be here. It’s the greatest opportunity, and I’m very happy just to learn, see, and experience things that maybe a girl who just left Iran seven months ago cannot have the opportunity to see or learn. I’m very happy and excited to be here … I’m hopeful not only do we have so many things to learn, but also we have something at least to offer. At the Shorenstein Center, I have to do a research paper. It’s not definite yet, but the main focus is about female journalists in Muslim, patriarchal societies and what they go through to do their job, what are the hardships or difficulties.REZAIAN: It’s really incredible, and just looking at our schedule, the people who we’ve come across in this first week of orientation, it’s awesome. You asked why we were drawn to this. I mean, it’s just the culmination of all these things. I’m just really looking forward to undoing some of the rough patch and the road that we went through over the last couple of years. Overall, I’m just looking for ways to enhance my storytelling skills and learn new skills and add them to what I already know, just to become a better journalist.This interview has been lightly edited for clarity and length.last_img read more

August Climate

first_imgRainfall in August reduced the area of extreme drought in northern Georgia. However, abnormally dry conditions and drought expanded in central and south Georgia, especially in coastal areas.August’s heat and variable rainfall had a significant impact on agriculture. Army worms became rampant in many pastures. The moist conditions in wet areas led to fungal diseases, which affected peanuts and vegetable crops. Rain hampered the harvest of corn in some locations, while corn in other locations didn’t set kernels because it was too dry. Peach production continued, although peaches were running smaller than average in size. Some pastures were still not producing hay, forcing livestock producers to sell cattle or purchase hay from out of state, while other areas with rain were seeing a return to better forage conditions and were producing hay again.Heavy rains caused traffic problems in some locations. On Aug. 22, a brief, but strong, storm was blamed for a pileup of almost 30 cars that occurred north of Atlanta in the late afternoon, injuring 13 people.The highest monthly total precipitation from National Weather Service reporting stations was 10.10 inches in Athens, Georgia — 6.57 inches above normal — and the lowest was in Valdosta, Georgia, at 1.92 inches — 3.42 inches below normal.Atlanta received 3.06 inches of rain, 0.84 inches below normal.Columbus, Georgia, received 4.37 inches of rain, 0.60 inches above normal.Macon, Georgia, received 2.03 inches of rain, 2.07 inches below normal.Savannah, Georgia, received 3.53 inches of rain, 3.03 inches below normal.Alma, Georgia, received 6.39 inches of rain, 0.98 inches above normal.Augusta, Georgia, received 3.66 inches of rain, 0.66 inches below normal.Brunswick, Georgia, received 3.80 of rain, 2.47 inches below normal. Albany, Georgia, received 4.68 inches of rain, 0.16 inches below normal.Rome, Georgia, received 6.42 inches of rain, 2.29 inches above normal. One daily rainfall record was set in August. Athens received 4.97 inches of rain on Aug. 4 in just a few hours, smashing the old record of 1.88 inches set in 1948. This was calculated to be close to a 500-year rainfall event, and the storm caused minor flooding and fallen trees. The rain also led to the collapse of roofs on a bowling alley and an auto repair shop. The record-setting rain helped make the month Athens’ second-wettest August on record after 1908, which had 18.43 inches of rain due to a low-pressure center that lingered over northeast Georgia for a week at the end of the month, similar to the weather event that caused flooding rain in Louisiana this month.The highest single-day rainfall recorded by Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) stations was 5.11 inches, measured southwest of Sautee Nacoochee, Georgia, in White County, on Aug. 4, followed by 4.26 inches measured in Winterville, Georgia, in Clarke County, on Aug. 5 in the same downpour that brought the record rainfall to the Athens airport a few miles away. Another station on the southeast side of Athens reported 4.14 inches on Aug. 18. The highest monthly rainfall of 12.33 inches was measured northeast of Dillard, Georgia, in mountainous Rabun County, followed by 11.02 inches measured at Flowery Branch, Georgia, in Hall County.Severe weather was observed on 12 days during the month. All of the reports involve scattered wind damage.Above-normal temperatures continued in Georgia for a third month. Brunswick set a new daily high minimum temperature of 81 degrees Fahrenheit on Aug. 26, replacing the old value of 80 F set in 2011. Several other maximum and high minimum temperatures were tied at weather stations around the state this month. Atlanta and Athens both experienced their fifth-warmest August on record, according to combined city/airport records.While very few daily temperature records were set in August, record runs of days at or above 90 F for maximum temperatures and 70 F for minimum temperatures occurred at a number of stations. Rainfall was highly variable in August, leading to reduction of drought in northern Georgia, but expansion into central and southern Georgia. It was not the warmest August for any station in Georgia, but it was in the top five for Atlanta, Athens and Augusta. Macon had its 10th-warmest August.The outlook for September shows a continuation of above-normal temperatures through the month. Rainfall in northwest Georgia was expected to be below normal, but Hurricane Hermine was expected to bring widespread relief to the dry conditions in southeastern Georgia early in September. The outlook for July through September shows that above-normal temperatures are likely to continue, and below-normal precipitation is likely to occur across the state. For more information, please visit the Climate and Agriculture in the South East blog at or visit the webpage at Please email your weather and climate impacts on agriculture to share on the blog to [email protected]center_img Atlanta’s monthly average temperature was 82.7 F, 3.3 degrees above normal. Athens’ monthly average temperature was 82 F, 2.4 degrees above normal. Columbus’ monthly average temperature was 83.1 F, 1.2 degrees above normal.Macon’s monthly average temperature was 83.1 F, 2.2 degrees above normal.Savannah’s monthly average temperature was 84.3 F, 2.8 degrees above normal. Brunswick’s monthly average temperature was 83.8 F, 2.0 degrees above normal.Alma’s monthly average temperature was 82.4 F, 1.1 degrees above normal. Augusta’s monthly average temperature was 83.1 F, 2.6 degrees above normal.Albany’s monthly average temperature was 84.2 F, 2.2 degrees above normal. Rome’s monthly average temperature was 82.0 F, 3.3 degrees above normal.Valdosta’s monthly average temperature was 82.9 F, 1.8 degrees above normal.last_img read more