Israel and UAE make deal to normalise relations, as Palestinians slam agreement

Israel and the United Arab Emirates have signed a deal to normalize relations between the two countries, which wil see Israel halt plans to annex parts of the West Bank. Palestinian officals have however called the deal a"betrayal of Jerusalem, Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Palestinian cause". US President Donald Trump issued a joint statement with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed Al Nahyan, saying this “is a testament to the bold diplomacy and vision of the three leaders and the courage of the United Arab Emirates and Israel to chart a new path that will...

UK court ruling finds police use of facial recognition technology a violation of human rights

The UK Court of Appeal ruled the British law enforcement’s facial recognition usage is “unlawful”, in a landmark case being celebrated by human rights campaigners this week. Judges stated that South Wales Police breached privacy rights, data protection laws and equality laws on Tuesday, following a legal challenge brought by civil rights group Liberty. The use of automated facial recognition technology was assumed on a trial basis by the South Wales Police in 2017, when a system called AFR Locate was deployed at several dozen major events such as football matches. Police matches scan against watchlists of known individuals to identify wanted persons, had open warrants against them, or were in some way or another ‘persons of interest’. The Court of Appeal judgment stated that South Wales Police had never sought to investigate that the software being used "does not have an unacceptable bias on grounds of race or sex.”

3 killed in violent clashes following offensive social media post in India's Bengaluru

Photo Credit: Simon Williams-Im A violent clash between the police and protesters, following an offensive social media post about Prophet Muhammad, has led to the deaths of three people in Bengaluru, in Southern India. The derogatory post sparked outrage and led to attacks on the police station as well as police houses and vehicles. The police resorted to live ammunition resulting in the death of three people. Police have further imposed a prohibition against public gatherings in Bengaluru. Police Commissioner, Kamal Pant, reported to Al Jazeera that they have arrested the person responsible...

Mali protests resume calling for President Keita’s resignation

Photo of Mali President, Ibrahim Boubacar Thousands took to the streets in Mali’s capital Bamako on Tuesday, demanding the resignation of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, despite pleas from regional mediators to stay home. Demonstrators filled Bambako’s Independence square, holding signs with anti-government slogans, blowing vuvuzela horns and shouting, “Keita step down.” Protests were led by the June 5 Movement, which has staged recent protests and continuously called out government corruption and incompetence. The protests turned violent on July 10 when police shot dead at least 11...

Kamala Harris becomes first Black and Tamil woman to run on major US ticket

Kamala Harris has been announced as Joe Biden’s vice-presidential running mate in the upcoming US presidential elections, becoming the first Black woman and the first Tamil to be nominated for national office by a major party. Harris, who is a senator and former California attorney general, was hotly tipped to be selected by Biden, with the New York Times reporting that he “may well be anointing her as the de facto leader of the party in four or eight years”. Former President Barack Obama said "Biden nailed this decision", and said Harris "is more than prepared for the job", in a tweet. US President Donald Trump said he was "surprised" as "nasty" and disrespectful”.

Newspaper founder Jimmy Lai arrested under Hong Kong’s national security law

Jimmy Lai, the founder of a media company and pro-democracy supporter in Hong Kong, was arrested under Hong Kong’s repressive new national security law. Lai owns a media company that was raided as part of his arrest, a move that signals the Chinese governments’ continuing clampdown on dissent in Hong Kong. China adopted this law six weeks ago, and already many people have been arrested for advocating for independence and autonomy. Additionally, the elections that were scheduled have been postponed a full year, and twelve pro-democracy candidates have been barred from elections.

Namibian genocide descendants denounce German government’s lack of apology

The descendants of the 1904-1908 Namibia genocide and leaders of Namibia’s Nama and Ovaherero people expressed concerns over the Namibian and German government’s handling of the 1904-1908 genocide, which they described as being treated as a “political game”. “Neither the Namibian nor the German government has undertaken any effort to restore relationships with the affected Nama and Ovaherero communities,” said traditional chiefs Vekuii Rukoro and Gaob Johannes Isaak in a joint statement. They also emphasised that Namibia President Geingob's administration “simply does not have the political...

Security forces clash with protesters in Beirut following deadly blast

Security forces clashed with protesters in Beirut during demonstrations against the country’s leadership after a blast on Tuesday at the city’s port killed at least 200 people. Security personnel used tear gas and batons against protesters who are demanding the resignation of many of the country’s political elite following the explosion. Protesters were spread throughout the city, and some occupied the Foreign Ministry building for hours until military personnel arrived. Many of the protests centred around Martyrs’ Square, near Parliament. While tension has been rising in Lebanon, the blast was the final straw for many protesters who have been facing economic uncertainty, coronavirus spikes, and problems with infrastructure.

Catalan parliament passes motion denouncing Spanish monarchy

Photo of Juan Carlos I, former King of Spain On Friday, the regional parliament of Catalonia passed a non-binding motion denouncing the monarchy following the recent decision of the former Spanish King, Juan Carlos I, to go into exile. The house was presented with the proposal, “Catalonia is a republic and does not want a king” and it received 69 votes in favour and 65 against, allowing the motion to pass. This comes after the royal announcement from four days ago that Juan Carlos had made the decision to leave Spain amid a number of related scandals for which he was under investigation. The...

50 refugees drown trying to reach Canary Islands

Around 50 refugees are reported to have died after news broke of refugee shipwrecks off the west coast of Africa. The two separate refugee boats were attempting to reach Spain’s Canary Islands from Western Sahara at the time of the shipwreck. The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) confirmed the deaths of 27 people who were found in the Atlantic alongside one survivor from Guinea. “They’re all dead, I think. I am the only survivor,” security officials reported the Guinean survivor stated, he went on to explain that after the boat’s engine failed, the passengers aboard leapt into the open sea. “These...