Human Rights

Peter Dutton abandons detention centre secrecy rules amid High Court challenge

Exclusive The Turnbull government has quietly abandoned strict secrecy provisions governing Australia’s immigration detention system, in a major victory for refugee advocates who challenged the laws in the High… Adam Gartrell The Age Immigration Minister Peter Dutton has put forward amendments to the 2015 Australian Border Force Act that will effectively strip out rules that threatened detention centre workers – including teachers, lawyers and social workers – with two years in prison if they spoke out about neglect or… The ... Read More »

Kenya Should Come Together After its Contested Elections

Contrary to the deadly election of 2007, Kenya’s pivotal and highly-anticipated 2017 national and local polls passed without major outbreaks of violence. ICG But in order to build on this achievement, Kenyans must take further steps to overcome ethnic divisions and work toward greater national unity and inclusive governance. Despite claims of irregularity and the continuing risk of unrest, Kenya’s pivotal national and local elections on 8 August passed off in a largely peaceful manner. Millions of voters braved the elements and ... Read More »

Look At What’s Happening In America In 2017

The Charlottesville rally is just another example of the deep-rooted, bone-chilling hatred in this country. Jenna Amatulli HuffPost In the past few days, thousands of “alt-right” members and white supremacists have taken over Charlottesville, Virginia, for a “Unite The Right” rally. The rally has also attracted plenty of counter-protesters, namely Antifa ― a fringe left radical group that stands for “Anti-fascism.” Violence and chaos has since ensued on both sides. The governor declared a state of emergency early Saturday morning.  ... Read More »

Nobel laureates urge Saudi king to halt 14 executions

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Ten Nobel Peace Prize winners are appealing to Saudi Arabia’s king and crown prince to show mercy and halt the executions of 14 young people sentenced to death for participating in protests in… EDITH M. LEDERER The Associated Press The Seattle Times In a letter released Friday they said staying the executions would “correct a great injustice.” The laureates said the 14 were convicted and sentenced in a mass trial “based on the actions of the ... Read More »

Why I won’t let shame about sexual assault silence me any more

When I had the idea of asking women to tell me the stories they found most difficult to tell, I knew I was entering uncharted waters. Jane Caro Brisbane Times I knew it because I had experienced the same silencing myself. In my early 20s I was sexually molested by a GP while he was inserting an UUD. For decades i was unable to tell anyone what had happened to me. Every time I thought about the incident I felt ... Read More »

Downplaying sexual assault to attack the Human Rights Commission is a new low

In denouncing a survey into university sexual assaults, rightwing ideologues aren’t just tormenting survivors – they’re ignoring the nationwide response. Allison Henry Allison Henry is the campaign director for The Hunting Ground Australia Project The Guardian When we started The Hunting Ground Australia Project two years ago we knew the day would come when the rightwing ideologues would come after us. There had been some savage responses to the documentary in the US and we expected that our campaign to ... Read More »

How a charter of rights could protect Australians’ fundamental freedoms

Australia’s record of human rights protection in areas such as Indigenous people, asylum seekers and freedom of speech are perennial topics of debate. The focus of these discussions is now shifting to whether Australia can take steps to establish a stronger legal framework for protecting human rights. How a charter of rights could protect Australians’ fundamental freedoms George Williams Daniel Reynolds The Conversation One reason for this is Australia is in the final stages of defending its record in a ... Read More »

Inquiry into The Status of the Human Right to Freedom of Religion or Belief

Time did not permit Liberty Victoria to address in full all aspects of the Terms of Reference for this Inquiry. Liberty Victoria Submitted To: Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Our concerns therefore centred on “3 — The relationship between the freedom of religion or belief and other human rights, and the implications of constraints on the freedom of religion or belief for the enjoyment of other universal human rights” (ToR 3). In particular we considered the balancing of freedom ... Read More »

Anti-Semitic Academics: Where is the Outrage Against Turkey?

In Turkey, academics are currently at the mercy of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who demands their compliance and threatens dissenters. A.J. Caschetta Gatestone Institute After last July’s failed coup (for which Erdogan blamed an American scholar), a series of emergency decrees have specifically targeted Turkish academia. One would think this assault would raise ire from the ivory towers, but as Turkey slides deeper into totalitarianism, academia yawns. The failure of many professors to stand up vigorously and publicly for what they ... Read More »

The leaked transcript of Turnbull’s call with Trump shows him at his worst

Turnbull’s government has called refugees “illegal” and treats them as criminals. It is a lie on which the Coalition has made itself popular. Julian Burnside * The Guardian * Julian Burnside is an Australian barrister and refugee advocate About a week after Donald Trump was inaugurated as president of the United States, he had a phone conversation with Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull. The call focused on the deal earlier done with the Obama administration, under which the US would take a ... Read More »

Life in limbo: the refugee experience in Southeast Asia

With under half of all Asian countries having signed the 1951 Refugee Convention or having any domestic legislation in place, refugees in the region are forced to live on the fringes of society. Evan Jones TRTworld In today’s public and political discourses, the words ‘refugee’ and ‘migrant’ are used almost interchangeably. There is often no distinction made between someone fleeing violence and persecution, and someone moving for the sake of a better life or other voluntary reasons. With a historical ... Read More »

3 human rights defenders transferred to Silivri Prison

Amnesty International (AI) Turkey Director İdil Eser and two other human rights activists, Özlem Dalkıran and Nalan Erkem, were transferred from Bakırköy to Silivri Prison on Monday. TM Six human rights activists, including Eser and German human rights consultant Peter Steudtner, who were detained on July 5 during a workshop at a hotel on İstanbul’s Büyükada, were put in pretrial detention by an… Republican People’s Party (CHP) İstanbul deputy Selina Doğan, who went to visit the three human rights defenders ... Read More »

Refugees treated with disrespect and having payments docked, report finds

Refugees settled in Australia are being treated with disrespect by federal service providers and having their welfare payments unfairly docked, according to a new report by the Refugee Council of Australia. Stephanie Dalzell ABC The draft paper, obtained by the ABC, examines a number of issues affecting humanitarian arrivals who have been settled in Fairfield, in Sydney’s west. The report includes several examples of hostile treatment from staff at government service provider Jobactive, such as a case where a refugee ... Read More »

Sri Lanka’s Conflict-Affected Women: Dealing with the Legacy of War

Tamil-speaking women in Sri Lanka’s north and east pushed for accountability and truth during the country’s civil war but have been marginalised during the transitional justice process. Crisis Group The government and international actors must include their voices and address their injustices and difficult economic situation to ensure lasting peace. Executive Summary Eight years after the end of Sri Lanka’s armed conflict, Tamil speaking women in the island’s north and east are still seeking justice and truth for wartime violations. ... Read More »

UN: 80 pct of Yemen children in need of immediate aid

A vicious combination of war, cholera and hunger has left 80 percent of Yemeni children in desperate need of aid, the United Nations has said said. Sanaa Hurriyet ”Nearly 80 percent of Yemen’s children need immediate humanitarian assistance,” the executive directors of three U.N. agencies said in a joint statement released at the end of a two-day visit on July 25. ”Nearly two million Yemeni children are acutely malnourished. Malnutrition makes them more susceptible to cholera. Disease creates more malnutrition. ... Read More »

Why offshore processing of refugees bound for Europe is such a bad idea

n the same day that a top UN official bravely called on Australia to end the harmful practice of processing asylum applications offshore in Papua New Guinea and Nauru, one of his colleagues announced his support for another proposed offshoring system – this time to prevent migrants reaching the… Daria Davitti  The Conversation On July 24, Filippo Grandi, the UN high commissioner for refugees (UNHCR), said that Australia’s policy to deny access to asylum in Australia for refugees arriving by sea “has caused extensive, ... Read More »