Human rights groups urge Arab League to back Syria's referral to ICC

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch called on the Arab League to endorse the UN Security Council motion to refer Syria to the International Criminal Court on allegations of crimes against humanity. In a report, 'We Live as in War' , released on Friday, the Human Rights Watch said, "Human Rights Watch believes that the nature and scale of abuses committed by the Syrian security forces across the country indicate that crimes against humanity may have been committed. "The similarities in the cases of apparent unlawful killings, including evidence of security forces shooting at protestors without warning in repeated instances, arbitrary detention, disappearances, and torture, indicate the existence of a widespread and systematic attack against the civilian population which has the backing of the state." “ The Arab League needs to tell President Assad that violating their agreement has consequences, and that it now supports Security Council action to end the carnage.”

Nations remember war dead on Armistice Day

Photograph BBC news Children lay poppies in Trafalgar Square, London Across the world, nations remembered their war dead on Friday 11th November, Armistice Day. The date marks the anniversary of Germany signing the Armistice agreement on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918. In the UK, the Remembrance Day ceremony was held at the Cenotaph. The British Prime Minister, David Cameron, said , " We stand together to honour the incredible courage and sacrifice of generations of British servicemen and women who have given their lives to protect the freedoms that we enjoy today ." " We stop to say thank you . And to remember those who are no longer with us but whose sacrifice and valour will be honoured long after we are gone . Observing Veterans Day, President Obama hosted a veterans breakfast at the White House, before laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns and speaking at a Veterans Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery. Speaking at Arlington cemetry, Obama said, “ On behalf of a proud and grateful nation, we thank you .”

Russia rules out Iran sanctions

The Russian foreign ministry has ruled out plans by the US, Britain and France to impose new sanctions on Iran following the release of a UN report that claims Iran may be trying to develop nuclear weapons. Russian deputy foreign minister, Gennadi Gatilov, told Interfax news agency “The world community will see all additional sanctions against Iran as an instrument of regime change in Tehran,” “This approach is unacceptable to us, and the Russian side does not intend to consider such a proposal.” In a statement the Russian foreign ministry called the report “a compilation of well-known facts...

Rights groups slam Commander Sheka candidacy - Congo

Human rights groups, including Human Rights Watch, have expressed outrage at Commander Ntabo Ntaberi Sheka, who is wanted by the Congolese government for his involvement in the 2010 mass rape commited in the Walikale area of eastern Congo, standing to represent the very same district in Parliament. Between July to August 2010, Sheka, the leader of the Congolese rebel group Mai-Mai Sheka, led his troops through 13 villages in Walikale, raping hundreds of villagers, including children and elderly women. Over 116 people were reportedly abducted. In a press statement , Anneke Van Woudenberg,...

Bosnian Serb jailed for Sarajevo war crimes

A former Bosnian Serb soldier has been sentenced to 18 years imprisonment for war crimes committed during the 1992-1995 siege of Sarajevo, the Bosnian capital. The defendant, Sasa Baricanin, was found guilty of murder, enslavement and rape by a war crimes court in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The court heard how he had broken into a family apartment and shot several of the residents dead, before repeatedly raping one of the females there. He then came back with a colleague and proceeded to rape her for several days. The victim came forward to testify at the trial and was a protected witness. "We...

UN prosecutor wants to investigate who helped Serb war crimes suspects

The Chief Prosecutor in the UN tribunal for war crimes has asked Serbian authorities to probe into how Ratko Mladic and another suspect were able to evade arrest and who helped them to do so. Serge Brammertz, prosecotur for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia made the statement as he visited Serbia, ahead of delivering a report to the UN Security Council on Serbia’s compliance with the war crimes trial. Serbia, whose acceptance into the EU is thought to hinge heavily with their compliance with the Hague tribunal, is hopeful of a positive report after the capture of...

Indian Court sentences Hindus for life

31 Hindus have been jailed for life for the killing of 33 Muslims during the 2002 riots in Gujarat. A mob burned down a house where a group of Muslims were sheltering from violence during riots that engulfed the Indian state of Gujarat. 41 others were acquitted of all charges due to lack of evidence. The riots started after a fire on a train that killed 60 Hindu pilgrims, was thought to have been an attack by Muslims. In the ensuing violence more than 2000 Muslims are thought to have died across northern India, with most deaths occurring in Gujarat. Chief Minister of Gujarat Narendra Modi is...

Outrage over Fifa ban on England footballers wearing poppies

Calls for Fifa to reconsider its ban on England footballers wearing shirts embroidered with poppies this weekend of Remembrance Sunday increase as the international governing body reject the FA's (Football Association's) second request to overturn the ban. The British Prime Minister, David Cameron said, " The idea that wearing a poppy to remember those who have given their lives for our freedom is a political act is absurd . " Wearing a poppy is an act of huge respect and national pride ." In a letter to Fifa, UK Sports Minister, Hugh Robertson, wrote, "Wearing a poppy is a display of national pride, just like wearing your country's football shirt . "The British public feel very strongly about this issue - it is not religious or political in any way ." Prince William (Duke of Cambridge) is also said to be "dismayed" by the decision and has pledged to write to Fifa himself. In a statement, Clarence House said, "The Duke's strong view is the poppy is a universal symbol of remembrance, which has no political, religious or commercial connotations ." In a tweet, injured England midfielder Jack Wilshere said, "My great-grandad fought for this country in WW2 and I'm sure a lot of people's grandparents did. "England team should wear poppies on Saturday. It's the nation's tradition and it would be disrespectful not to ."

Ohio torture case against former Somali colonel to go ahead

A former Somali colonel living in Ohio is to be prosecuted for torturing a human rights activist in 1988. Abdi Aden Magan sought to have the case dismissed by a federal court by arguing it was filed in the wrong country and too long after the alleged abuse occurred. Plaintiff Abukar Hassan Ahmed filed a case against Magain in 2010, alleging the colonel was responsible for his detention and torture. US District Court Judge George Smith ruled Ahmed could sue Magan in the United States, relying in part on a motion passed by the US Department of State, saying Magan should not be able to claim...

Khmer Rouge prosecutor confident of ‘strong’ case

The international prosecutor for the UN-backed war crimes tribunal in Cambodia, has stated that he is confident of prosecutions against four former leaders of the Khmer Rouge, as the case goes to trial later this month. Speaking to Voice of America Khmer , Andrew Cayley said, “I think that the case is a very strong one against these individuals because of the size and scope of the crimes that were committed. There is documentary evidence that links them with the crimes on the ground, including publications of the Khmer Rouge, and including other documentary evidence.” His position was backed...

Pages