Australian Human Rights Commission expresses 'grave concern' for immigration detainees

The Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has outlined “grave” concern over the government’s handling of people held in Australia’s immigration detention facilities, as it published a report looking into the immigration detention network last month. The AHRC found that people were being detained for long periods of time – “orders of magnitude greater than any comparable jurisdiction” – with limited access to communal facilities and healthcare. “The Government should act urgently to reduce the total number of people in immigration detention,” said Edward Santow, Human Rights Commissioner...

Palestinians excluded from Israel's vaccination drive

As Israel spearheads a massively successful vaccination drive against the coronavirus, reports reveal that the Palestinian population residing in the occupied West Bank and Hamas-ruled Gaza strip is deliberately being left out of the programme by the Israeli government. Israel has vaccinated over 10% of its 9 million population leading the entire globe in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. But, the coalition government of the right-wing Likud party and the centre-right Blue and White Party headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has prioritized inoculating Jewish Israelis over...

Australia changes anthem to "celebrate" indigenous past

In reflection of the Australia's grievous history with its Indigenous people, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the country's national anthem would be altered from January 1. Australia will no longer be referred to as “young and free” in the anthem. Instead, people will sing “one and free,” in hopes it will create a “spirit of unity” among its inhabitants and acknowledge people who have lived in Australia tens of thousands of years before colonists. Prime Minister Morrison claimed, “it recognizes the distance we have travelled as a nation. It recognizes that our national story is drawn...

Over 20 killed in a deadly attack in Southern Yemen

As the newly formed cabinet of Yemen arrived in the Southern City of Aden, an explosion killed at least 22 people and injured over 50. Whilst the Prime Minister and his cabinet are reported to be okay, amongst those killed are aid workers and officials. Yemen’s information minister has accused Houthi rebels of being behind this “cowardly terrorist act”. The conflict in Yemen, which began in 2015, has resulted in the deaths of more than 110,000 people and has left millions on the brink of famine. Read more from the BBC.

Karima Baloch, Balochistan activist and Pakistan critique, found dead in Toronto

Karima Baloch, 37-year-old Balochistan activist and refugee, has been found dead in Canada following her missing disappearance. Baloch was the first chair of the Baloch Students Organisation (BSO-Azad), a student organisation advocating for the rights of those in Balochistan and highlighting the ongoing issue of enforced disappearances. In 2016, she was listed by the BBC as one of its 100 most inspiration and influent women for her human rights work. Her husband, Hammal Haider, a human rights advocate, has maintained that there are suspicious circumstances behind her death. A month prior to...

Nicaragua passes law that suppresses opposition in 2021 elections

The Sandinista National Liberation Front, Nicaragua’s ruling party, the Sandinista National Liberation Front, passed a law preventing opposition candidates from running in the 2021 presidential elections. The new law has granted Nicaragua's president Daniel Ortega and his government the power to unilaterally declare citizens “terrorists” or coup-mongers, classify them as “traitors to the homeland,” inhibiting candidates from running in the election. Candidates “who lead or finance a coup…encourage foreign interference, ask for military intervention…propose or plan economic blockades, applaud...

ICC refuses to investigate Chinese mass detention of Uighur Muslims

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has refused to investigate allegations of genocide committed by China against the Uighur Muslim minority, rejecting complaints filed by two Uighur exile groups, the East Turkistan Government in Exile and the East Turkistan National Awakening Movement. The complaint details “a campaign of torture, forced sterilization and mass surveillance against Muslims, among other abuses”. This includes the mass detention of Uighur Muslims, in what the Chinese government claim are “job training centres”. There have also been allegations of forced repatriation of...

US sanctions Turkey over the purchase of Russian S-400 missiles

The US has imposed sanction on a key official in Turkey’s Presidency of Defence Industries, Turkey’s military procurement agency, following the procurement of S-400 defence missiles from Russia. The ban targets Ismail Demir, chief of the Presidency of Defence industry, and three other senior Turkish officials. The sanctions will block any assets held by the officials in the US and impose a travel ban on them. There is a further ban on most export licences, loans and credits to the agency. Turkey warns it will retaliate Turkey has responded warning that it “will retaliate in a manner and...

US recognises Morocco’s claims over West Sahara in exchange for normalised relations with Israel

The US has become the first country to recognise Morocco’s claims over West Sahara, in exchange, Morocco has become the Arab nation to establish diplomatic ties with Israel since August. Morocco has occupied the resource-rich territories of West Sahara since 1975, in defiance of the United Nations and the international community. Democracy Now highlights that during this occupation “thousands have been tortured, imprisoned, killed and disappeared while resisting the Moroccan occupation”. Despite this, over 80 countries recognise the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic and it has been recognised...

UK and US impose sanctions on 31 human rights violators

Marking International Human Rights Day, the US and UK announced a new round of sanctions targeting 31 human rights violators from across the globe. This is the third announcement of sanctions under the UK’s sanctions regime and includes travel bans and asset freezes for human rights violators from Russia, Venezuela, Gambia, and Pakistan. The US sanctions targeted officials from China, El Salvador, Haiti, Liberia, Jamaica, Kyrgyz Republic, and Russia. Included in the sanctions were former Gambian President, Yahya Jammeh, and Ahmad Anwar Khan, the former Senior Superintendent of Police in Malir...

Pages