Humanity

Pope Francis asks for forgiveness from Rohingya refugees

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Pope Francis has used the term “Rohingya” for the first time during his current trip to Asia to refer to refugees who have fled in large numbers from violence in Myanmar. ABC Reuters “The presence of God today is also called Rohingya,” he said in an improvised remark after meeting 16 refugees brought to the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka from their camps in Cox’s Bazar near the border with Myanmar. “In the name of all of those who have persecuted you, ... Read More »

UN appeals for record $22.5 bln in global aid for 2018

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The United Nations appealed Dec. 1 for a record $22.5 billion (18.9 billion euros) to provide aid in 2018 to soaring numbers of people slammed by conflicts and disasters around the world GENEVA – Agence France-Presse Hurriyet The global appeal by U.N. agencies and other humanitarian organizations aims to raise funds to help the some 91 million most vulnerable of the nearly 136 million people expected to need aid across 26 countries next year. The number of people in need ... Read More »

Sogyal Rinpoche and the abuse accusations rocking the Buddhist world

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Punching. Emotional abuse. Eye-popping sexual misdeeds. David Leser The accusations made against Sogyal Rinpoche – a key lama in the uptake of Buddhist principles by the West – have rocked devotees, including many in the top echelons of Australian business. The Canberra Times On a late September evening this year, a group of leading Australian business figures gathered in a Sydney boardroom to discuss a series of allegations that had scandalised the Buddhist world, and shaken their own to the core. ... Read More »

Australia’s offshore detention regime is a brutal and obscene piece of self-delusion

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The billions spent on an armada to Australia’s north and west is stopping people smugglers, not the government’s needlessly cruel stance Ben Doherty and Helen Davidson |The Guardian <link rel=”stylesheet” type=”text/css” href=”https://assets.guim.co.uk/stylesheets/083f39962459e2911cf02c0302757c7c/content.css”/> The most dangerous mistruth in current Australian politics is that in order for lives to be saved at sea, other people – accused of no crime – must be indefinitely and arbitrarily punished offshore. Asserted with increasing confidence as fact, this unproven link is used to justify Australia’s ... Read More »

Why I locked myself to the gate of Kirribilli House

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Hwvar Khoshnow was one of five Christian protesters who locked themselves to the front gate of Kirribilli House in non-violent direct action, calling for the evacuation of Manus Island. Eternity News Here, she tells Eternity, why she did it. I’ve been involved in protests before, but I have not risked arrest before or participated in a “lock on”. The worsening situation on Manus was heavy on my heart and I was moved to do something in support and solidarity with ... Read More »

Australia still embraces multiculturalism but fracture lines are deepening

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Scanlon Foundation Mapping Social Cohesion Report finds ugly discrimination is on the rise, and we no longer listen to political leaders David Marr Australia is a decent country where ugly discrimination is on the rise The Guardian We’re no longer listening when our leaders urge us to face down bigots in the interest of calm and good sense. Most of us embrace life in the new multiethnic Australia, but the constituency of those hostile to race is steadily growing. That ... Read More »

Julie Bishop didn’t raise Manus Island refugee issue says Winston Peters

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Reports that the Government’s position on Manus Island refugees strained New Zealand’s relationship with Australia were “misinterpretations”, Parliament has been told. tvnz Facing opposition questions today, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop didn’t raise the issue when they met. National’s foreign affairs spokesman Gerry Brownlee asked him whether he had seen any reports suggesting the Government was causing strain in the relationship with Australia because of its position on the refugees. “If by reports the… Julie ... Read More »

Foreign parliaments are not powerless to help the Rohingya – their pressure on Myanmar is vital

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As the pope made a high profile visit to Myanmar in late November, attention turned to how to help the thousands of Rohingya Muslims who have fled their homes to Bangladesh following violence and what UN officials have described as ethnic cleansing. Wessel Vermeulen Andreja Pegan  A deal struck between the two countries to start returning the refugees, has been criticised for going against international refugee law. The Conversation Western politicians have also travelled to Myanmar and Bangladesh to witness ... Read More »

In Times Of Crisis We Must Work Especially Hard To Protect Women And Girls

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Violence against women and girls anywhere and at any time is not acceptable Julie Bishop In conflicts and crises across the world, women and girls can suffer terrible abuses HuffPost The UN estimates that seven in 10 women are exposed to violence in crises The risk of abuse increases when they flee without the family or community networks that would normally support them, leaving them vulnerable to trafficking or assault. The trauma of such experiences cannot be overstated, severely affecting ... Read More »

Humanitarian aid arrives in Yemen as coalition allows UN flights

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The first shipments of humanitarian aid arrived at Sanaa airport overnight after a weeks-long closure which aid groups said deprived Yemen’s residents of badly needed food and supplies. tvnz On Saturday, the airport received two flights – one from the Red Cross and another from UNICEF. Both carried medical supplies, among them polio vaccines.They also carried UNICEF and Red Cross aid workers. The Saudi-led coalition that has imposed an air, sea and land blockade on war-battered Yemen since November 6 ... Read More »

‘Horrified’ Rwanda offers to host African migrants facing slavery in Libya

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In an unusual gesture that could partly reverse a more familiar northward odyssey toward Europe, Rwanda offered on Thursday to house or help repatriate some of the thousands of African migrants being held in Libya and reportedly auctioned there as… Alan Cowell New York Times The Sydney Morning Herald  A statement from the country’s Foreign Ministry said Rwanda was “horrified” that “African men, women and children who were on the road to exile have been held and turned into… “Given ... Read More »

Man with intellectual disability jailed because NDIS couldn’t provide carer, released on bail

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Judge says he’s ‘horrified’ by isolation conditions 20-year-old Victorian man, Francis, was held in after service provider pulled out of care contract Calla Wahlquist  The Guardian A Victorian man with a profound intellectual disability will be released from jail on Monday after spending two months in isolation because he did not have an accredited care provider. Announcing his decision to release 20-year-old Francis on bail on Thursday, supreme court judge Lex Lasry reportedly said he was “horrified” by the conditions ... Read More »

Mladic is convicted but jury is still out on Yugoslav tribunal

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It is not clear if the war crimes tribunal has been a deterrent to other perpetrators Ray Murphy The Irish Times Gen Ratko Mladic, the former Bosnian Serb commander, has been found guilty of war crimes and other serious violations of international law. This was the last trial judgment to be delivered by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia before its closure at the end of this year. It is one of the most important trials conducted by ... Read More »

Julian Burnside: “NZ a moral superpower on Manus”

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There’s been a plea to refocus attention on the ethics at the heart of the Manus Island refugee crisis Newstalk ZB Staff , Audio Australia’s immigration minister has confirmed the refugees have all left the Papua New Guinea detention centre, after police moved in yesterday to clear them out Australian civil liberties lawyer Julian Burnside, QC, told Larry Williams New Zealand is the moral super power in our part of the world. He’s suggesting we look to history, to gain clarity ... Read More »

Myanmar and Bangladesh strike a shameful deal on Rohingya refugees

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Many Rohingya people who have fled the ethnic cleansing in Myanmar are now living as refugees in Bangladesh Rosa Freedman The Conversation And now, the two countries have reportedly struck a deal to return them home. Returning Rohingya people to the hands of their persecutors not only violates international law, but raises fundamental questions about how the world protects those fleeing the most heinous crimes and abuses. This deal comes just days after Ratko Mladic was sentenced to life imprisonment ... Read More »

Kim Kardashian, Rihanna throw support behind jailed teen Cyntoia Brown

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The story of a 16-year-old girl who in 2004 killed a man who picked her up for sex is spreading around the world, after a number of high-profile celebrities joined a campaign to free her. ABC Cyntoia Brown was sentenced to life in prison over the killing of 43-year-old Nashville real estate agent Johnny Allen. Allen picked her up off the street after she was forced into sex work by her boyfriend, a pimp who went by the name “Kutthroat” ... Read More »