At least 26 protestors arrested in Nicaraguan anti-government demonstration

Police have arrested at least 26 people during anti-government protests in the Nicaraguan capital of Managua on Sunday. These protests were organised by an alliance of 40 opposition groups calling on President Daniel Ortega and Vice President Rosario Murillo, to resign. The current demonstrations began in April of this year and demanded that proposed changes to the nation’s pensions schemes be scrapped. However following heavy handed and sometimes violent state repression of the protests, the situation has escalated. The protestors are now demanding that Ortega step down. Al Jazeera notes...

US Senate rules Stalin committed genocide in Ukraine

The United States Senate passed a resolution this week, recognising the Ukraine famine of 1932-33 as a genocide, committed by Soviet leader Josef Stalin. Millions of people were killed in the famine, also known as the Holodomor famine, in which the Soviet regime is thought to have engineered conditions leading to devastating shortages of food. The Senate "recognizes the findings of the Commission on the Ukraine Famine as submitted to Congress on April 22, 1988, including that...'Stalin and those around him committed genocide against the Ukrainians in 1932–1933,'" said the adopted resolution...

UNHRC appointments criticised for human rights records

The election of human rights abusing countries to the UN Human Rights Council, where the likes of Saudi Arabia and Egypt already have seats, has drawn criticism from human rights groups. The Philippines and Eritrea were elected to the council on Friday, despite campaigners urging UN members to oppose their candidacy. Bahrain and Cameroon were also elected. The council was established in 2006 to replace the UN Commission on Human Rights, with a purpose to promote and protect human rights around the world. The council’s has had Sri Lanka’s human rights violations on its agenda since 2012. Read...

Canada will keep up pressure over human rights on Saudi Arabia

Canada will maintain pressure on Saudi Arabia over human rights despite a diplomatic row between the two countries, the Canadian prime minister has said. “We have been engaged in a significant diplomatic effort with Saudi Arabia for many years now on ... the issue of human rights. We continue to bring it up any time I have the opportunity to meet with Saudi leadership,” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters in Yerevan, Armenia. Saudi Arabia froze new trade with Canada in August after the Canadian embassy published a tweet urging the release of jailed women’s rights activists...

China’s legalises “re-education” centres for Uighur Muslims

The Chinese regional government in Xinjiang has legalised “re-education centres” for local Uighur Muslims after denying their presence as interment camps. In August, China had denied the allegations of mistreatment and the detention of Muslim Uighurs, however the United Nations currently estimates that as as many as 1 million Uighurs have been detained. The Chinese government maintains that these education centres are crucial in their effort to stamp out religious extremism and violence within the region. In the legislation it notes that the authorities have the right to detain those who...

Cameroon opposition declares victory in election, as Anglophone region boycotts polls

Professor Maurice Kamto, leader of the Cameroon Renaissance Movement's (CRM), claimed victory in Sunday’s presidential election despite the constitutional council not yet proclaiming the official results and a massive boycott from conflict-ridden Anglophone regions. Supporters of Kamto took to the streets of the capital Yaoundé to celebrate his victory on Monday, despite the lack of official declaration of the results. This ends reign of Africa’s oldest leader President Paul Biya who took office in 1982. Had he won this election he would have retained power till 2025. The presidential...

Mexican President-elect pressures drug companies to contain prices

Mexico’s President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador warned pharmaceutical companies in the country that if they did not contain their prices he would seek business elsewhere, stating that they were paying too much for medicine. During a speech in Morelia, Obrador said that his budget would provide the public with free medicine and would bring an end to what he termed “corruption” from pharmaceutical companies, reports Reuters. Obrador estimated that the government spent about 100 billion pesos ($5.31 billion) on medicine each year. Stating that whilst he would be fair to these companies if...

Missing Interpol chief resigns after detention in China

The president of Interpol, who disappeared 12 days ago, has resigned from his position with immediate affect after reports he was detained in China. Chinese authorities said the president Meng Hongwei, a native of China, was under investigation for unspecified violations of Chinese law. His disappearance was originally reported to French police by his wife who said she had not heard from his since she travelled to China. The international police agency said it was using law enforcement channels to inquire into Meng’s status. Read more from Al Jazeera.

Pakistan’s opposition leader jailed for 10 days ahead of by-election

Opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif was arrested by Pakistan’s National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Friday ahead of by-elections in the country. The NAB asserts that as chief minister of Punjab from 2013-2018, he unduly influenced authorities into awarding “contracts for a government-run housing program for low-income citizens to a company with which he had political affiliations” in 2014. Pakistani authorities said that they will hold him in custody for 10 days making it impossible for him to campaign alongside his party in a crucial by-elections that may threaten the ruling party’s slim...

Hong Kong rejects visa for FT Asia editor

Hong Kong’s government has rejected a visa for Financial Times editor Victor Mallet, following a talk by an independence activist in the city last month. “This is the first time we have encountered this situation in Hong Kong,” the Financial Times said on the visa rejection. “We have not been given a reason for the rejection.” Mallet is the vice-president of the Hong Kong’s Foreign Correspondents' Club (FCC), which hosted a talk by Andy Chan Ho-tin, convener of the Hong Kong National Party, calling for Hong Kong's independence from China. Moves are underway by Beijing to ban the party over...

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