1 million march for independence in Catalonia

Photograph @MBartalot09 One million marched on Tuesday calling for independence to Catalonia, ahead of the plan independence referendum on October 1. The march, held on Catalonia's national day, La Diada de Catalunya, was in its sixth year running.

Myanmar rejects Rohingya militant declaration of ceasefire

Myanmar has rejected the Rohingya militant’s declaration of ceasefire amidst what the UN has described as movements of ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya community. Shortly after the Rohingya militants declared a ceasefire on Sunday, Myanmar’s government spokesperson Zaw Htay said it would not negotiate with terrorists, tweeting, “We have no policy to negotiate with terrorists.” See more here.

Zeid: Myanmar's treatment of Rohingya Muslims is 'textbook example of ethnic cleansing'

Opening the current session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, High Commissioner Zeid Ra‘ad al-Hussein condemned Myanmar's violence against the Rohingya population, stating it was a "textbook example of ethnic cleansing" and called on the government to stop its “complete denial of reality”. “We have received multiple reports and satellite imagery of security forces and local militia burning Rohingya villages, and consistent accounts of extrajudicial killings, including shooting fleeing civilians,” Mr Zeid said in his opening address on Monday. “I call on the government to end its...

Rohingya fighters declare unilateral one month ceasefire

The armed Rohingya organisation, Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army declared a unilateral month long ceasefire on Saturday in order allow aid to be distributed. Violence in Myanmar between government troops and ARSA has dramatically escalated in recent weeks after Myanmar's troops launched a large scale operation in Rakhine purported to be in retaliation for coordinated attacks on police posts by ARSA. Over 270,000 Rohingya Muslims have been forced to flee the region to Bangladesh, with numerous reports of government soldiers firing at fleeing refugees and burning their homes. “Arsa strongly...

Desmond Tutu criticises Aung Suu Kyi's silence on 'slow genocide' of Rohingya community in Myanmar

Nobel laureate Desmond Tutu condemned Myanmar’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s silence on the “slow genocide” and “ethnic cleansing” of the Rohingya community by Myanmar’s military forces. In a letter to the fellow Nobel laureate he said, “I am now elderly, decrepit and formally retired, but breaking my vow to remain silent on public affairs out of profound sadness about the plight of the Muslim minority in your country, the Rohingya. My dear sister: If the political price of your ascension to the highest office in Myanmar is your silence, the price is surely too steep… We pray for you to speak...

US calls on Myanmar to allow in humanitarian aid

The United States on Thursday called on Myanmar's government to allow humanitarian aid into the state of Rakhine as the fighting between Rohingya fighters and states troops heightened and tens of thousands of Rohingya Muslims have fled. "There has been a significant displacement of local populations following serious allegations of human rights abuses - including mass burnings of Rohingya villages and violence conducted by security forces and also armed civilians," the spokesperson for the State Department, Heather Nauert said on Thursday. "We again condemn deadly attacks on Burmese security...

China agrees to UN Security Council action on North Korea

China has agreed for further UN Security Council sanctions to be placed North Korea in response to its latest nuclear tests. The US is currently drafting a resolution for the UN Security Council to impose an oil embargo on North Korea alongside a ban on exports of textiles reports Reuters. Speaking to reporters China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi said, “Given the new developments on the Korean peninsula, China agrees that the UN Security Council should make further response and take necessary measures. Any new actions taken by the international community against the DPRK should serve the purpose...

Catalan parliament passes legislation approving October independence referendum

Catalan’s parliament passed legislation approving the October 1st independence referendum on Wednesday night amidst heavy opposition from Spanish government aligned MPs. The legislation passed by 72 votes despite 52 opposition MPs staging a walk out of the Catalan parliament, reports abc news. The passing of the legislation was denounced by the Spanish government, which has pledged to take legal action against the parliament to stop the independence referendum. Calling the passing of the legislation illegal, Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, said, “That something the government and courts...

Syria's government killed civilians with chemical weapons in April finds UN inquiry

Syrian forces dropped chemical weapons on the rebel held town of Khan Sheikhun killing 80 civilians in April, confirmed a UN Commission of Inquiry On Syria on Wednesday. Documenting a litany of rights abuses and violations of international law, the Commission’s press release , said, “Government forces continued to deliberately target civilians, including through the use of chemical weapons against civilians in opposition-held areas. As part of an aerial campaign in northern Hama and southern Idlib, on 4 April the Syrian air force used sarin in Khan Shaykhun, killing over 80 people, most of...

Gauri Lankesh - prominent Indian journalist and critic of Hindu nationalism murdered in Bangalore

Prominent Indian journalist and critic of Hindu nationalist politics, Gauri Lankesh, was shot and killed outside her home in Bangalore on Tuesday night. Ms Lankesh, 55, had previously worked in New Delhi for leading English language newspapers, and was most recently editing her own local-language weekly in the Karnataka capital. She was known for being critical of the BJP and the so-called Hindutva brigade and outspoken against the rise of violent Hindu fundamentalism in India. Ms Lankesh was appealing against a conviction from last year of defaming a BJP lawmaker in Karnataka in a 2008...

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