Humanity

EDITORIAL: Liberals unethical pick for new ethics commissioner

Public sector integrity commissioner Mario Dion is shown in Ottawa on December 13, 2011. The Liberals are tapping a long-time public servant to be the ethics watchdog for the House of Commons. Government House leader Bardish Chagger says Dion is being nominated to become the next ethics and conflict of interest commissioner.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld ORG XMIT: cpt121

Talk about a bogus appointment process The Liberals have known for ages that ethics commissioner Mary Dawson was due to leave her post in early January Toronto Sun Postmedia News They were, after all, the ones who extended her appointment more than once by six month increments. So why then did they use such rushed, last-minute tactics to appoint Dawson’s successor? The whole process that unfolded this past week on Parliament Hill has opposition MPs and expert observers crying… On ... Read More »

Melbourne archbishop says he’d rather go to jail than report child abuse heard in confession

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Denis Hart says ‘communication with God is of a higher order’ after child sex abuse inquiry calls for failure to report to become a criminal offence Melissa Davey and agencies The Guardian The archbishop of the archdiocese of Melbourne, Denis Hart, said he would risk going to jail rather than report allegations of child sexual abuse raised during confession, and that the sacredness of communication with God during confession should be above the… He was responding to a report from the child ... Read More »

6,700 Rohingya killed in first month of Myanmar violence: MSF

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“At least 6,700 Rohingya, in the most conservative estimations, are estimated to have been killed, including at least 730 children below the age of five,” MSF said Dec. 14. YANGON – Agence France-Presse Hurriyet The group’s findings come from six surveys of more than 11,426 people in Rohingya refugee camps and cover the first month after the crisis erupted. “We met and spoke with survivors of violence in Myanmar, who are now sheltering in overcrowded and unsanitary camps in Bangladesh,” ... Read More »

British troops breached Geneva conventions in Iraq, high court rules

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Court says soldiers subjected civilians to cruel and inhuman treatment, in cases that may determine handling of further claims Ian Cobain The Guardian British troops breached the Geneva conventions and subjected Iraqi civilians to cruel and inhuman treatment by hooding them and taking turns to run over their backs, the high court has ruled. Furthermore, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) breached the conventions as well as the 1998 Human Rights Act in the way in which it detained civilians after the 2003 invasion, the ... Read More »

Why rights must trump politics if new global plans on refugees and migrants are to make a difference

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The world has a chance to strike a bold agreement in 2018 that could improve the lives of refugees and migrants, but only if world leaders put aside the politics that often plagues debate on these issues and focus on people’s fundamental rights. Heaven Crawley Katharine Jones It’s been more than a year since leaders came together in September 2016 at the UN to try and bolster international cooperation on migration and refugee issues. The Conversation The resulting New York ... Read More »

Our Border Protection Spin Isn’t Fooling The World, UN Docs Reveal

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The international community is not fooled by Australia’s human rights offending immigration policies, writes Kellie Tranter. New Matilda In January this year, Treasurer and former immigration minister Scott Morrison told Australians: “We are the envy of the world when it comes to strong border protection policies that protect the integrity of our immigration system.” Yet heavily redacted documents released under Freedom of Information laws relating to our bid for the United Nations Human Rights Council suggest that in diplomatic circles, ... Read More »

Barnaby Joyce says New Zealand should ‘back off’ on offer to resettle refugees

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Deputy PM says Jacinda Ardern’s pledge to resettle up to 150 refugees from Manus Island could jeopardise the countries’ relationship Ben Doherty The Guardian Recently renounced New Zealand citizen Barnaby Joyce has said his former homeland should back off on its offer to resettle refugees from Australia’s offshore detention regime. In an interview with Newstalk ZB in New Zealand, the recently-reinstalled deputy prime minister of Australia issued a veiled threat to the NZ prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, that her commitment ... Read More »

Wanted for genocide, Sudan leader welcomed by Erdogan at Jerusalem summit

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Omar al-Bashir is alleged by ICC to have committed war crimes in conflict that UN says killed at least 300,000 and displaced more than 2.5 million AFP The Times of Israel  ISTANBUL — Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, who is wanted on charges of genocide and war crimes, attended an emergency summit of the world’s main pan-Islamic group in Istanbul, Wednesday. Bashir was among leaders who responded to a call by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to attend the meeting after ... Read More »

Jeremy Corbyn and Noam Chomsky win peace prize amid media silence

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UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has been awarded the Sean MacBride Peace Prize along with Noam Chomsky and Japanese anti-military base activists, yet the award received scant coverage in the British media. RT The International Peace Bureau presents the Sean MacBride Peace Prize to individuals, organizations or movements for their work in the areas of peace, disarmament and human rights. Corbyn, along with renowned scholar Noam Chomsky and the All Okinawa Council Against Henoko New Base, were deemed this year’s ... Read More »

Government moves to curb modern slavery

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Slavery is the world’s second-biggest illicit market In the past, slaves were shackled in metal chains. Editorial Today, they are exploited in supply chains. The Sydney Morning Herald It might have been thought that slavery was a shameful but pretty much closed chapter of history. It’s not. It is the world’s second-biggest illicit market, behind drugs, with an estimated 45 million children, women and men treated as commodities (average price about $90). Forced labour generates an estimated $US150 billion  ($199b) ... Read More »

Sexual abuse survivors fear being ‘deserted’ after royal commission ends

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Advocates say commission’s closure will create ‘sense of loss’ and express concerns there will be insufficient support Melissa Davey The Guardian Survivors of sexual abuse and their advocates have spoken of their fears of being left in the lurch once the child abuse royal commission’s work officially draws to a close. On Friday the royal commissioners will deliver their final report to the governor general in Canberra, marking the end of their five-year inquiry into how abuse was able to ... Read More »

Netanyahu: Palestinians must face reality over Jerusalem

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Israel’s prime minister has said Palestinians must “get to grips with” the reality that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital in order to move towards peace. BBC Benjamin Netanyahu said Jerusalem had been the capital of Israel for 3,000 years and had “never been the capital of any other people”. He spoke amid ongoing protests in the Muslim and Arab world at a US decision recognising Jerusalem as the capital. Violence flared near the US embassy in Lebanon and elsewhere on Sunday. ... Read More »

Locals threaten violence against Manus Island asylum seekers at new accommodation

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Asylum seekers on Manus Island say local people are threatening to kill them after they moved into new accommodation in the island’s town Eric Tlozek ABC The men have provided video evidence of local men — who appear to be drunk — coming to their accommodation and threatening them. In one incident, in the early hours of the morning on December 10, a group of four men approached the main gate of the West Haus accommodation compound. A video filmed ... Read More »

The Roma are yet again scapegoats for society’s ills

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Lurid claims of child sexual abuse have emerged just as they are becoming free of the grip of predatory landlords Kevin McKenna The Guardian In Govanhill, a little network of streets and avenues on Glasgow’s South Side, the besmirching of another immigrant community is in full spate. A century ago, it was the poor Irish, fleeing famine and persecution by the British government, who were being demonised. Now it’s the turn of the Roma people. Britain’s largest concentration of Roma ... Read More »

New Zealand creates special refugee visa for Pacific islanders affected by climate change

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SYDNEY – With ocean levels rising in recent decades due to the warming planet, one of the most direct effects has been on the residents of low-lying Pacific nations where coasts have been subsiding and some islands have disappeared. Jonathan Pearlman The Straits Times The result is a looming wave of “climate refugees” who are set to present a new migration problem to the region. As some Pacific countries prepare to relocate entire communities, New Zealand’s newly-elected Labor-led coalition government ... Read More »

What life is like for asylum seekers and refugees in Northern Ireland

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Astur lives in Belfast, a city divided by long looming peace walls, one legacy of the Northern Ireland “Troubles”. Fiona Murphy Ulrike M Vieten She comes from Somalia, a country riven by conflict, war and torture and took many months to reach this place of barricades and reconciliation, of hope and gaiety – a place of enduring confusion and ongoing division. The Conversation Successive cataclysms of political authoritarianism and ethnic conflict in Somalia forced her to flee with her two ... Read More »