Features

Mitsutoki Shigeta: ‘Baby factory’ dad wins paternity rights

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A Bangkok court has awarded paternity rights to a Japanese man over 13 babies he fathered through Thai surrogate mothers. BBC The ruling allows Mitsutoki Shigeta, 28, to pursue custody of the children. The son of a wealthy entrepreneur, he caused controversy in 2014 when he was revealed to have fathered 16 babies via surrogates in Thailand. His so-called “baby factory” case and others led to Thailand banning commercial surrogacy for foreigners. Mr Shigeta, who was not present at the ... Read More »

Pat Dodson accuses Turnbull of ditching bipartisan constitutional recognition

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Labor senator ‘encouraged’ by poll finding majority support for Indigenous voice to parliament Calla Wahlquist The Guardian Pat Dodson has accused the prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, of deliberately throwing out a bipartisan approach to Indigenous constitutional recognition, after a new poll that found 57% of voters — including 38% who typically vote for the Coalition — would support an Indigenous voice model. The Newspoll, published in the Australian on Tuesday, was the third to find majority support for an Indigenous ... Read More »

John McLellan: Mosley fights for privacy while Facebook goes back to basics

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The lurid case of ex-Formula One head Max Mosley and the revelations about his sex life in the now-defunct News of the World is a staple of media law courses. John McLellan The Scotsman Readers may need no reminding that the paper ran a story alleging that the son of the British fascist leader had indulged in a “Nazi-themed” sado-masochistic orgy with five prostitutes and he sued for breach of privacy. While the Nazi element of the story turned out ... Read More »

Winning the Post-ISIS Battle for Iraq in Sinjar

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Though the Islamic State (ISIS) is beaten in Iraq, the battle for the country’s political soul is not over. Baghdad should act to restore local governance in Sinjar, where ISIS terrorised the local community, and encourage the district’s displaced people to return home. ICG What’s new?  The Islamic State (ISIS) is defeated in Iraq, and its genocidal campaign against the Yazidis in Sinjar has ended. But Iran-backed Shiite militias – Popular Mobilisation Units – now control the district. Much of ... Read More »

Ukraine submits Memorial on Russia’s violations of Law of the Sea to World Court

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The Memorial proves that Russia violated the sovereign rights of Ukraine in the Black, Azov seas and Kerch Strait 112.International On Monday, Feb. 19, Ukraine submitted its Memorial in Arbitration Proceedings against the Russian Federation under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, according to the press service of Ukraine’s MFA. It is noted that since 2014, Russia “has unlawfully excluded Ukraine from exercising its maritime rights; it has exploited Ukraine’s sovereign resources for its own ends; and ... Read More »

Mueller, Russia and Oil Politics

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Dunder-Mifflin as Troll Farm The Mueller indictment made public on Friday charges 13 Russian nationals with trolling the American electoral process to ‘sow discord’ by falsely representing themselves as American dissident personas. Rob Urie CounterPunch Once the field of presidential aspirants had been narrowed in 2016, their goal became to support Donald Trump’s candidacy while disparaging Hillary Clinton. There is no charge that the outcome of the 2016 election was changed by these actions. The form of the alleged conspiracy ... Read More »

The secret on the ocean floor

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A wave of pioneers is poised to scoop up treasure from the deep sea. But was this ocean mining boom sparked by a 1970s CIA plot? By David Shukman BBC In the summer of 1974, a large and highly unusual ship set sail from Long Beach in California. It was heading for the middle of the Pacific where its owners boasted it would herald a revolutionary new industry beneath the waves. Equipped with a towering rig and the latest in ... Read More »

Michele Renouf investigated over Holocaust remarks at neo-Nazi rally in Germany

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Berlin: German police are investigating an Australian-born British woman for suspected incitement after she questioned the Holocaust during a far-right protest in the eastern city of Dresden. The Canberra Times AAP A spokeswoman for Dresden police says Michele Renouf was one of two people being investigated for remarks made at the neo-Nazi rally on Saturday commemorating those killed in the 1945 Allied bombing of the… Videos of the rally posted online show Renouf saying the only Holocaust perpetrated in Europe was ... Read More »

Hell of a Fiesta

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In the spring of 2017, and all through the year, social media feeds in Venezuela were filled with images of deprivation and despair: long lines of people hoping to purchase food; women fighting over a stick of butter; mothers who could not find milk to buy; children picking through garbage in search of something to eat; empty shelves in pharmacies and stores; hospitals without stretchers, drugs, or minimum levels of hygiene; doctors operating on a patient by the light of ... Read More »

Museum of Australian Democracy exhibition looks at migration through Holocaust survivors’ eyes

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The story begins with a toy koala – furry, life-sized and huggable – and ends with the poignant reminders of the bottomless traumas of the Holocaust. Sally Pryor The Canberra Times But in exploring the different experiences of migration to Australia, an exhibition at the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House in Canberra has a single shining theme: human resilience. In 1949, an eight-year-old girl named Isobel Saxelby was presented with a toy koala when she arrived in ... Read More »

PH giving China ‘too much, too early, too soon’, says UP prof

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The Philippines has given “too much, too early and too soon” in seeking rapprochement with China and may end up with the short end of the stick, a maritime law expert warned on Saturday. By: Jhesset O. Enano – Reporter INQUIRER “We are trading away too much, too early and too soon in dealing with China,” said Jay Batongbacal, director of the University of the Philippines Institute for Maritime Affairs and Law of the Sea. “Even though we have had ... Read More »

Turkey is following footsteps of Russia and China in policing diaspora

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Erdogan’s purge is a threat to Turks living abroad and, more dangerously, to the rule of law everywhere. Transnational repression is increasingly woven into the fabric of the international order Francis Ghiles The Arab Weekly The globalisation of travel and finance and the spread of instantaneous communication, notably through social media, benefit civil society and woven links that encourage broad dialogue across borders. What is less often commented on is that countries have been handed useful and cheaper ways of ... Read More »

Dani Garavelli: Oxfam crisis doesn’t absolve us of our debt

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If there is one thing the past few years have taught us, with their many revelations of abuse, it is that wherever there is a power differential, there will be sexual exploitation. Dani Garavelli The Scotsman Counter-intuitively, or perhaps not, the risk seems to increase in those institutions in which the public has traditionally invested most trust: schools, hospitals, churches, the BBC. With Jimmy Savile we learned the hard way that engaging in good works was a perfect cover for ... Read More »

Lukov March: Far-right supporters rally in Bulgaria

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Sofia, Bulgaria – More than 1,000 far-right supporters have rallied in Bulgaria’s capital, Sofia, to pay tribute to a fascist general with close ties to Nazi Germany. by Mariya Petkova Al Jazeera “Lukov March” is organised every year by the Bulgarian National Union (BNS) to mark the death of Hristo Lukov, a 1930s defence minister and an ultranationalist leader who was assassinated by a communist group in 1943. Shouting slogans such as “Freedom or death!” and “All communists to court! Bulgaria is ... Read More »

Poland is trying to rewrite history with this controversial new holocaust law

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Anyone suggesting that Poland was complicit in the Holocaust could face fines or even imprisonment of up to three years under a controversial new law approved by president Andrzej Duda. Svenja Bethke The Conversation The law makes it illegal to accuse the Polish nation of having taken part in the atrocities and the systematic mass murder of the Jews committed by the Germans during World War II. Initially, the law was designed to criminalise the use of the phrase “Polish ... Read More »

“Turkey is the Standard-Bearer of the Global Fight for Justice”

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Speaking at the AK Party’s Eskişehir Provincial Congress, President Erdoğan said: “Besides its own goals, Turkey is also the standard-bearer of the global fight for justice. Turkey is a safe haven for the oppressed and a nightmare for the oppressors. Therefore, Turkish nation must be stronger, more robust and united than ever.” Presidency of the Republic of Turkey President and AK Party Chairman Recep Tayyip Erdoğan delivered a speech at the Eskişehir Provincial Congress of the Justice and Development (AK) ... Read More »