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Pakistan: Renewed Threats to Afghan Refugees

The Pakistani government should reduce rights violations against Afghan refugees by extending their legal residency status until at least December 31, 2017, Human Rights Watch said today. On June 29, 2016, the government extended registered Afghan refugees’ Proof of Residency (PoR) cards for six months, until the end of 2016.

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Jordan: 70,000 Syrians Trapped at Border

Jordan should immediately allow humanitarian agencies to resume life-saving aid deliveries to 70,000 Syrians stuck in appalling conditions at its northeastern border, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities should also resume procedures allowing Syrians to leave the border area for refugee screening in Jordan.

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Remembering Cecil the Lion, One Year Later: Trophy Hunting Remains Prevalent Problem Worldwide

One year ago, an arrow was fired into Cecil, a beloved lion, commencing a heartbreak that would be felt around the world. Cecil, was lured, wounded by an arrow, then ruthlessly tracked for approximately 40 hours before finally being killed on July 1 by an American trophy hunter in Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe. Today the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) remembers Cecil’s life and the countless other wildlife that have been lost to trophy hunting – including the tens of thousands more since this tragedy – and the work that is left to save those remaining.

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LGBT rights and protections are scarce in constitutions around the world, UCLA study finds

LGBT rights and protections are scarce in constitutions around the world, UCLA study finds FSPH WORLD's study provides global analysis of constitutional rights based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

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MEPs call for swift Brexit to end uncertainty and for deep EU reform

The UK must respect the wish of a majority of its citizens, entirely, fully and as soon as possible, by officially withdrawing from the EU before any new relationship arrangements can be made, says the European Parliament in a resolution voted after an extraordinary plenary debate on Tuesday. MEPs also stress the urgent need for reforms to ensure that the EU lives up to its citizens’ expectations.

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Joint statement by Schulz, Tusk, Rutte and Juncker on UK referendum outcome

In a free and democratic process, the British people have expressed their wish to leave the European Union. We regret this decision but respect it.

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Explosive renewables development can deliver on Paris

While some criticize the Paris climate target as impracticable, a team of scholars argues that it is - on the contrary - a triumph of realism. First, and most importantly, adhering to the Paris target of keeping global warming well below 2 degrees Celsius is necessary in view of the massive risks that unchecked climate change would pose to society. A crucial type of threats, associated with the crossing of tipping points in the Earth system, is summarized in a landmark map for the first time. Second, implementing the Paris target is feasible through the controlled implosion of the fossil industry, instigated by a technological explosion related to renewable energy systems and other innovations. Third, the target is simple enough to create worldwide political momentum, the scientists say in their comment published in Nature Climate Change.

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Analysis: Has Chinese repression sealed off Tibet?

As Chinese border guards searched the cargo truck he was hiding in, Yonten’s heart began to race. If they discovered him among the boxes, his attempt to escape Tibet would be over and he would end up in prison instead of India.

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Study: Refugees can offer economic boost to their host countries

Refugees are often considered an economic burden for the countries that take them in, but a new study conducted by UC Davis with the United Nations World Food Program indicates that refugees receiving aid--especially in the form of cash--can can give their host country's economy a substantial boost.

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2015 Sees Unprecedented Killings of Environmental Activists

More than three people were killed a week in 2015 defending their land, forests and rivers against destructive industries, according to Global Witness. The organisation’s new report, On Dangerous Ground, documents 185 known deaths worldwide last year – by far the highest annual death toll on record and a 59% increase from 2014. Severe limits on information mean the true numbers are undoubtedly higher.

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Moldova: Reject ‘Gay Propaganda’ Law, Says Human Rights Watch

The Moldovan parliament should reject a bill to introduce discriminatory anti-gay “propaganda” clauses in national law, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to lawmakers. The bill is similar to those proposed in other countries in recent years that have been roundly criticized by regional and international human rights bodies.

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Privatising security must not lower standards of protection and accountability – UN rights expert

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Christof Heyns, today has called for greater scrutiny and accountability of the use of force by private security providers in law enforcement activities.

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Alleged killer of British MP was a longtime supporter of U.S.-based neo-Nazi National Alliance

Jo Cox, a member of the Labour Party in the British Parliament, died Thursday after an attack by a lone man who shot and stabbed her in West Yorkshire following a regular public meeting she held with constituents.

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Fundamentalist intolerance is degrading assembly and association rights worldwide – UN expert

The phenomenon of fundamentalism is fueling growing intolerance worldwide, which poses a grave threat to the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association, United Nations expert Maina Kiai told the Human Rights Council today in presenting his latest report* on religious, free market, political, and nationalist or cultural fundamentalism.

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Report: Stop criminalising drug users, says Royal Society for Public Health

RSPH, with support from the Faculty of Public Health (FPH) – are today calling for the personal possession and use of all illegal drugs to be decriminalised. The call forms part of a wider package of measures aimed at moving UK drugs strategy away from a predominantly criminal justice approach towards one based on public health and harm reduction.

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Formula One: Red Flag on Rights in Azerbaijan

Formula One promises this weekend’s Grand Prix of Europe race in Baku will be “a race like no other.” While the racecourse may make history for its speed and length, the event is significant for much more sinister reasons.

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Gender equality: Women’s health should not pay the price for discriminatory ideologies

The United Nations Working Group on Discrimination against Women in Law and Practice today called on Governments to take urgent, immediate and effective actions to address the global challenge of safeguarding women’s right to health, including their reproductive and sexual health.

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WHO expresses concern over disease outbreaks in its response to Fallujah crisis

WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean Dr Ala Alwan arrived in Baghdad today to review firsthand WHO’s response to the unfolding humanitarian crisis in Fallujah city, where more than 42 000 Iraqis have been displaced since the beginning of the military operations in the city in May 2016. Tens of thousands of besieged and displaced men, women, children and older people face major health risks as they lack adequate access to health services.

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Pakistan: Prosecute Rampant ‘Honor’ Killings

Pakistan’s government should urgently investigate and prosecute those responsible for the recent jump in reported “honor” killings in the country, Human Rights Watch said today. The government should also revise the laws that facilitate the practice and take appropriate action against local officials who endorse or tolerate such crimes.

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Mediterranean Sea: 1,300 people rescued in two days

Three ships with medical and logistical teams from Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) rescued a total of 1,300 people from boats adrift in the central Mediterranean on June 8 and 9. More than one-third of those rescued were women and children, including many unaccompanied minors.

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OAS: Save Human Rights Body, Says Human Rights Watch

Member countries of the Organization of American States (OAS) should promptly ensure that the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights receives enough financial support to fulfill its mandate, Human Rights Watch said today. The commission, a key defender of human rights in the Americas, faces a financial crisis that threatens justice and protection to victims of abuses across the continent.

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International law allows for the legalisation of cannabis

The regulated cultivation and trade of cannabis for recreational use is permissible on the basis of states’ positive human rights obligations. This is the result of research by Legal scholars Piet Hein van Kempen and Masha Fedorova of Radboud University in Nijmegen, the Netherlands.

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New UN treatment targets for HIV/AIDS would be 'expensive but worth every penny'

A new study finds that implementing the United Nations targets for HIV testing and treatment would be an expensive but ultimately very cost-effective way to increase survival, reduce the number of children orphaned by HIV, and contain the global AIDS epidemic. That is the conclusion of researchers at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), the University of Cape Town and the Yale School of Public Health, who estimated the likely impact of the so-called "90-90-90" program.

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Niger Delta: Government clean-up does not let Shell off the hook

The multinational oil giant Shell must not be allowed to palm off its responsibility to clean up decades of oil pollution which continues to blight the Niger Delta, said Amnesty International ahead of the Nigerian government’s long overdue clean-up of Ogoniland, due to begin on June 2.

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Hydropower dams worldwide cause continued species extinction

New research led by the University of Stirling has found a global pattern of sustained species extinctions on islands within hydroelectric reservoirs.

Scientists have discovered that reservoir islands created by large dams across the world do not maintain the same levels of animal and plant life found prior to flooding.

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Expert urges voluntary family planning to mitigate climate change

With climate change already close to an irreversible tipping point, urgent action is needed to reduce not only our mean (carbon) footprints but also the "number of feet" - that is, the growing population either already creating large footprints or aspiring to do so, argues a leading physician and environmentalist in The BMJ today.

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Iraq: Response to Protests Killed Four

Iraqi security forces fired bullets and teargas canisters at peaceful protesters in Baghdad’s Green Zone on May 20, 2016, killing four people and wounding more than 100, Human Rights Watch said today. Iraqi authorities should investigate the use of lethal force against the peaceful protesters.

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B'Tselem: Israeli Military's Law Enforcement System Is a Whitewash Mechanism, A Fig Leaf for the Occupation

The Israeli human rights organization B'Tselem announced this morning (Wednesday, 25 May 2016) that it will stop referring complaints to the military law enforcement system, in order to avoid contributing further to the pretense inherent in the work of this system. In a report published today entitled The Occupation’s Fig Leaf, B'Tselem explains that this decision was taken after a protracted period of reflection in the organization, based on its experience in hundreds of complaints B'Tselem has submitted to the military law enforcement system and dozens of Military Police Investigations Unit (MPIU) files it has examined. This experience has led B'Tselem to the recognition that there is no longer any point in pursuing justice and defending human rights by working with a system whose real function is measured by its ability to continue to successfully cover up unlawful acts and protect perpetrators. B'Tselem will continue to document and report on human rights violations by Israel in the Territories, but it will stop submitting complaints, coordinating meetings between the MPIU investigators and Palestinian victims and eyewitnesses, an securing various documents for the investigation authorities.

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Renewable Energy Employs 8.1 Million People Worldwide, Says New IRENA Report

More than 8.1 million people worldwide are now employed by the renewable energy industry – a five percent increase from last year – according to a report released today by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) at its 11th Council meeting. The report, Renewable Energy and Jobs – Annual Review 2016, also provides a global estimate of the number of jobs supported by large hydropower, with a conservative estimate of an additional 1.3 million direct jobs worldwide.

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India: Stop Treating Critics As Criminals, Says Human Rights Watch

The Indian authorities routinely use vaguely worded, overly broad laws as political tools to silence and harass critics, Human Rights Watch said in a new report released today. The government should repeal or amend laws that are used to criminalize peaceful expression.
India’s Constitution protects the right to freedom of speech and expression, but recent and colonial-era laws, such as sedition and criminal defamation, not only remain on the books but are frequently used in an attempt to clampdown on critics.

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