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SAMSUNG TO SPEND SH500M TO PUSH PRODUCTS IN REGION

Samsung Electronics Company plans to increase its budget on marketing initiatives in a bid to wrestle the market control of other Asian electronic giants in East Africa. Albert Kyung Soo Kim, managing director, said the move is part of the company's global strategy to become a leading brand by the year 2010. Kim said the company has already set a side a total of Sh500 million for this purpose, an amount, which he said, is expected to increase with an increase in sales volume.

* RSF has protested heavy sentences upheld on appeal against six Internet users in the southern Tunisian city of Zarzis. The six were accused of using the Internet to plot terrorist attacks. Their 19-years-and-three-month sentences were reduced on appeal to 13 years' imprisonment. The convictions were based entirely on confessions extracted under duress and not supported by any real evidence, according to RSF, which expects a higher court of appeal to overturn the sentences.

"The charges against the young men from Zarzis were far too flimsy to warrant such a harsh sentence," RSF said. "Their use of the Internet has served as a pretext for these unfounded convictions."

* The Chief Executive Officer of Associated Newspapers of Zimbabwe (ANZ) Sam Sipepa Nkomo has dissociated his company from the new on-line newspaper Zimonline. There has been speculation that Zimonline is a re-incarnation of the closed Daily News and the Daily News On Sunday. "I, as the Chief Executive Officer of ANZ, wish to distance the ANZ or any of its staffers from that edition," he said.