75% torture rate in Pakistan raises concern over executions
Published Dec 22, 2014 - 8:28:36 AM
Concerns have been raised that the resumption of executions in Pakistan could result in the deaths of innocents, in light of a report which finds that police used torture in 76% of cases, often to extract bogus 'confessions.'
Tahoe Resources' former security manager to be tried in Guatemalan court
Published Dec 18, 2014 - 12:46:25 PM
On Wednesday, a Guatemalan judge decided that Tahoe’s former security manager, Alberto Rotondo, should stand trial for his role in a shooting attack on peaceful protesters in April of last year.
International Migrants Day: Rights of migrants under attack across the globe
Published Dec 18, 2014 - 9:38:49 AM
The rights of migrants are being trampled across the globe, as some of the world’s most vulnerable people face economic exploitation, discrimination and racism in a range of countries, Amnesty International said on International Migrants Day.
UN expert group on arbitrary detention welcomes the release of detainees in Cuba and the US
Published Dec 18, 2014 - 9:27:45 AM
The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention* today welcomed the release of a number of detainees in Cuba and the United States, some of whose cases have been followed by the expert group. The release was announced after moves to normalize relations between the two countries were unveiled earlier this week.
Red Cross Red Crescent calls for respect of the dignity and rights of all migrants
Published Dec 18, 2014 - 9:09:11 AM
On International Migrants Day, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is calling for the respect of the dignity and rights of all migrants.
B'Tselem: Israel wants to have its cake and eat it too when it comes to Geneva Convention
Published Dec 17, 2014 - 1:49:06 PM
The High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Convention held a conference today. In a press release issued after the conference, the contracting parties reaffirmed the obligation of all parties to uphold the fundamental principles of the laws of war, and called on Israel to respect the provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention throughout the occupied territory, including East Jerusalem. The High Contracting Parties cited, inter alia, the obligation of the Occupying Power to administer the territory while taking into account the needs of the civilian population, and recalled the illegality of the settlements and the Separation Barrier. They also expressed deep concern over the closure Israel imposes on the Gaza Strip.
Communiqué of the Vatican Secretariat of State
Published Dec 17, 2014 - 10:23:49 AM
The Holy Father wishes to express his warm congratulations for the historic decision taken by the Governments of the United States of America and Cuba to establish diplomatic relations, with the aim of overcoming, in the interest of the citizens of both countries, the difficulties which have marked their recent history.
China is world's worst jailer of the press; global tally second worst on record
Published Dec 17, 2014 - 9:06:23 AM
In the wake of a broad crackdown on free expression since President Xi Jinping took office, China is the world's worst jailer of journalists, with 44 behind bars, the Committee to Protect Journalists found in its annual report on imprisoned journalists released today.
Ebola leaves hundreds of thousands facing hunger in three worst-hit countries
Published Dec 17, 2014 - 7:14:41 AM
The number of people facing food insecurity due to the Ebola epidemic in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone could top one million by March 2015 unless access to food is drastically improved and measures are put in place to safeguard crop and livestock production, two UN agencies warned.
World Bank should recognize importance of human rights in its new environmental and social policies -- UN Special Rapporteur
Published Dec 17, 2014 - 7:05:33 AM
The United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, today urged the World Bank to recognize the central importance of human rights to its draft environmental and social policies, also known as Safeguard policies, which apply to its investment project financing. The draft Safeguards policies were released by the Bank in July for public consultation, as part of the multi-stage review.
China, UK, and US at centre of global "land grabbing" trade
Published Dec 17, 2014 - 6:58:15 AM
Nearly two out of three countries in the world now participate in a new kind of “virtual land trade”, where not only the goods produced but land ownership itself is traded internationally, according to a study from Lund University in Sweden.
Taliban attack on Pakistan school an act of 'horror and rank cowardice', says UN chief
Published Dec 16, 2014 - 11:13:51 AM
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today strongly condemned the “blood-curdling attack” on a school in Peshawar, Pakistan, which has cost the lives of at least 130 people, the vast majority of whom were children.
Toxic Water, Tainted Justice: Thai government fails to clean up toxic lead in Klity Creek
Published Dec 16, 2014 - 8:56:59 AM
The Thai government has failed to clean up toxic lead in a stream in western Thailand, threatening hundreds of families with serious and irreversible health problems, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The Supreme Administrative Court’s order nearly two years ago to clean up Klity Creek, the first of its kind in Thailand, has been ignored by the government while villagers remain exposed to lead in water, soil, vegetables, and fish.
Pakistan school killings: Zeid calls for united front against “savage extremism”
Published Dec 16, 2014 - 7:31:47 AM
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein on Tuesday condemned what he described as “an utterly despicable and incomprehensibly vicious attack on defenceless children” at a co-educational school in the Pakistani city of Peshawar.
Indonesian security forces shoot dead 5 Papuan teenagers
Published Dec 15, 2014 - 9:44:28 AM
Five tribal teenagers have been shot dead by Indonesian security forces in West Papua.
The killings occurred during a protest over an incident the night before, when soldiers beat a 12 year-old boy, Yulianus Yeimo, with their rifle butts. Yeimo and others, who were decorating a Christmas tree, had shouted at the soldiers’ vehicle to turn on its headlights. He needed to be hospitalised for his injuries.
Oxfam: Rough seas ahead for climate talks, Paris deal still on the horizon
Published Dec 15, 2014 - 9:39:25 AM
Another year of increasingly extreme and destructive weather and new political momentum were not yet enough to boost the ambition of UN climate talks in Peru. The decisions made in Lima do not foreclose the possibility an agreement in Paris, but do little to improve the odds of success.
Climate Decision Threatens Rights of Present and Future Generations, Says CIEL
Published Dec 15, 2014 - 9:10:09 AM
Climate talks ended today with a decision that wholly fails to set us on a path that will protect the rights of peoples and communities impacted by climate change. “Countries have failed to represent the interests of their people in these negotiations,” said Niranjali Amerasinghe, Director of the Climate & Energy Program at the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL). “The decision they adopted is empty and does not come close to the ambition required to deal with the climate crisis. It is unacceptable.”
No Justice in Lima Outcome, Say Groups Across the World
Published Dec 15, 2014 - 9:08:57 AM
Groups across the world declared there was 'no justice' in the outcome of the UN Climate Conference in Lima, known as COP20.
After two weeks of negotiations governments agreed to a last minute text that did nothing to address pre-2020 climate action, sidelined the issue of dealing with the impacts of climate change, and hardly progressed the rules for a new agreement that is supposed to be signed in Paris next year.
Reprieve report reveals £20m UK funding for foreign drug executions
Published Dec 15, 2014 - 8:49:42 AM
UK taxpayers’ money has enabled as many as 2,917 brutal executions in Iran and more than 112 pending death sentences in Pakistan, a report from legal action charity Reprieve has shown. Many of the sentences have been handed down to women and children, as well as a number of British nationals.
Climate talks take a rocky road to Paris
Published Dec 15, 2014 - 8:33:07 AM
A deal struck in Lima between 196 nations today leaves open the possibility of saving the planet from dangerous overheating. But its critics say the prospects of success are now slim.
Study shows sharp rise in teenage childbearing during Iraq War
Published Dec 12, 2014 - 7:40:43 AM
The nine-year Iraq War led to a sharp rise in teenage childbearing, according to new research published today (12 December) by the London School of Economics and Political Science.
WHO: Homicide is the third leading cause of death globally for males aged 15-44 years
Published Dec 12, 2014 - 7:21:37 AM
The "Global status report on violence prevention 2014" reveals that 475 000 people were murdered in 2012, and homicide is the third leading cause of death globally for males aged 15–44 years, highlighting the urgent need for more decisive action to prevent violence.
500+ Organizations Launch Global Coalition to Accelerate Access to Universal Health Coverage
Published Dec 12, 2014 - 6:57:51 AM
A new global coalition of more than 500 leading health and development organizations worldwide is urging governments to accelerate reforms that ensure everyone, everywhere, can access quality health services without being forced into poverty. The coalition was launched today, on the first-ever Universal Health Coverage Day, to stress the importance of universal access to health services for saving lives, ending extreme poverty, building resilience against the health effects of climate change and ending deadly epidemics such as Ebola.
U.S. torture programmes made the matter of terrorism worse and provided "a breeding ground for more terrorism" -- UN Expert
Published Dec 11, 2014 - 10:59:57 AM
The United States' use of torture when interrogating prisoners captured in its “War on Terror” has damaged the country's moral high ground and created a set-back in the global fight against the condemnable practice, a United Nations human rights expert has declared.
Zeid: Landmark U.S. and Brazil reports highlight need to eradicate torture on 30th anniversary of Convention
Published Dec 10, 2014 - 1:16:57 PM
On the 30th anniversary of the adoption of the Convention against Torture, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein on Wednesday urged States to act unequivocally in their effort to stamp out torture.
Palestinian Center for Human Rights praises Swiss government's bid to convene a summit on Palestine
Published Dec 8, 2014 - 11:40:50 AM
PCHR warmly welcomes the efforts made by the Swiss Government to convene a conference of the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention at this critical time for the Palestinian people.
Sexual and Reproductive Health Services Fall Far Short of Needs in Developing Regions
Published Dec 5, 2014 - 11:55:10 AM
A new report finds a staggering lack of basic sexual and reproductive health services in developing countries. The report, Adding It Up: The Costs and Benefits of Investing in Sexual and Reproductive Health 2014, finds that currently, 225 million women in developing countries want to avoid pregnancy, but are not using modern contraceptives. In addition, tens of millions of women do not receive the basic pregnancy and delivery care they need to protect their health and that of their newborns.
Italy / Migrants: “A humanitarian crisis must have a global humanitarian response”
Published Dec 5, 2014 - 9:01:56 AM
The increasing number of migrants and asylum seekers crossing the Mediterranean Sea in the last few months has resulted in a global humanitarian crisis which must have a global humanitarian response, United Nations human rights expert François Crépeau has warned today in Italy.
South Sudan War Threatens Existence of Elephants, Giraffes, and Other Wildlife
Published Dec 5, 2014 - 7:44:25 AM
Slow progress in peace negotiations and ongoing fighting in many areas of South Sudan continue to prolong human suffering and threaten already vulnerable wildlife populations says a team of field conservationists from WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society).
Scientists Urge Protection of World's Deltas
Published Dec 4, 2014 - 1:17:42 PM
Extensive areas of the world’s deltas — which accommodate major cities such as Shanghai, Dhaka and Bangkok — will be drowned in the next century by rising sea levels, according to a Comment piece in this week’s Nature. In the article, Dr. Liviu Giosan, a geologist with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), and colleagues call for maintenance efforts to be started now to avert the loss of vast expanses of coastline, and the consequent losses of ecological services, economic and social crises, and large-scale migrations.