Tamil director receives death threats for urging Vijay Sethupathi to snub Murali biopic

A Tamil director has requested for ‘urgent’ protection for his life after claiming he received several life threatening messages for asking Vijay Sethupathi to opt out of the controversial Muttiah Muralitharan biopic ‘800’. Seenu Ramasamy, who worked with Vijay Sethupathi in the Tamil films ‘Dharma Durai’ and ‘Thenmerku Paruvakaatru, insisted that his life was “in danger” and took to Twitter to call for Tamil Nadu’s Chief Minister to offer him some sort of security. Ramasamy tweeted on Wednesday, “I feel that my life is in danger. Chief Minister [ayya]’s help is needed. Urgent.” Ramasamy...

Rwandan genocide suspect arrives in The Hague to face trial

Rwandan genocide suspect, Félicien Kabuga, 84, has been transferred into detention at The Hague to face trial for his alleged participation during the 1994 genocide of thousands of Tutsis in Rwanda. He was on the run for over two decades until he was arrested in France in May. The United Nations International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, which handles outstanding war crimes cases for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, is due to try the former tea and coffee tycoon. Kabuga is indicted on counts of genocide, complicity in genocide and crimes against humanity. He allegedly...

Pompeo’s seeks strong bilateral relations with India whilst condemning China

During US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo’s, visit to India earlier this week, he emphasised the “strong and growing bilateral relationships with India” whilst also condemning China’s Communist Party, stating; "The CCP is no friend to democracy, the rule of law, transparency, nor to freedom of navigation — the foundation of a free and open and prosperous Indo-Pacific". This visit is Pompeo’s fourth during the Trump administration and follows US President Donald Trump’s visit earlier this year. During this trip Pompeo spoke on a range of issues including increased cooperation on defence,...

69 killed in Nigerian peaceful protest police brutality

Amnesty International has reported that 12 people have been killed during peaceful protests against police brutality in Lagos, Nigeria. 69 people have been killed by Nigeria’s security forces whilst protesting police brutality since October, The protests broke out on Wednesday despite a state-imposed curfew. Whilst demonstrators were setting up a blockade and singing the national anthem, Nigeria’s police opened fire into the crowd and used tear gas. Lagos, the Lekki toll plaza, and several other Nigerian cities reported gunfire at their demonstrations. Two private TV stations were forced off...

French teacher beheaded after sharing controversial cartoons

Samuel Paty, a French teacher was beheaded last Friday near Paris after sharing caricatures of Islam's Prophet Muhammad with his class. The suspect, 18-year-old Chechen man, was shot dead by police. The images were part of a lesson on freedom of speech held in October. The controversial cartoons were originally published by the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in 2012. And were cited as the motivation behind the killing of 12 people by Islamist extremists at the magazine's offices. Responding to the attack the rector of the Lyon mosque, Kamel Kabtane, said the slain teacher "did his job" and...

China threatens to detain Americans if US prosecutes scholars

Chinese officials have warned the US that they will detain Americans if the Justice Department prosecutes Chinese scholars who are affiliated with the Chinese military, The New York Times reported . US law enforcement officials report that five recently arrested Chinese scholars did not disclose their military affiliations on their visa applications, therefore accusing that China may be conducting industrial espionage in their research centres. The Trump administration announced it was barring Chinese students at the graduate level or higher from entering the US if they had ties to military...

Thai authorities restrict access to messaging app to curb protests

Thailand authorities have ordered internet providers to block Telegram, a messaging app, which has been used by pro-democracy protesters. An official with the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission confirmed reports on Monday that they had been ordered to block access to the messaging app which has been used Deputy police spokesman Kissana Phataracharoen confirmed an order signed by the chief of police that could allow officials to block access to news sites citing “distorted information”. Another ministry requested court orders to censor content on four media outlets and...

Bolivia’s socialist party claims massive victory a year after ‘US-backed coup’

Bolivia’s elections on Sunday saw the Movement Toward Socialism (MAS), claim a victory after securing 52.4 per cent of the vote, according to exit polls. This election follows the ousting of former Bolivian President, and leader of MAS, Evo Morales, in 2019 following controversial protests led by Bolivia’s military and allegations by the Organisation of American States (OAS) of irregularities in the electoral process. Supporters of Morales has described the outing of Morales and the appointment of US-backed interim president, Jeanine Áñez Chavez, as a “US-backed coup”. Morales was forced into...

China passes amendment that criminalises insulting the national flag

The Standing Committee of China’s congress passed amendments to a law which will criminalise insulting the national flag and emblem. The amendment which will come into effect on January 1, 2021, will criminalise those who intentionally burn, paint, deface, discard or display the flag upside down and will be prone to investigation for criminal responsibility. Amendments to the law were proposed after pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong last year desecrated the Chinese flag resulting in controversy in China. In Tuen Mun, protestors asked for the reclamation of Hong Kong and some took down a...

China and Russia election to the UN Human Rights Council causes outrage

China and Russia's appointment as members of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) has caused outrage amongst human rights campaigners. It "is like making a gang of arsonists into the fire brigade”, commented UN Watch, a Geneva-based monitoring group. Fifteen countries were elected to the 47-member state council. Each country had to gain 97 affirmative votes by secret ballot by the majority of the UN General Assembly to secure a three-year term seat at the UNHRC starting on 1 st January. The elected members are Bolivia, China, Côte d’Ivoire, Cuba, France, Gabon, Malawi, Mexico,...

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