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The Politics of Islam in Mali: Separating Myth from Reality

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Settling the place of Islam in Mali’s society and politics is a less visible but longer-term challenge to the state than its rebellious north and stalled peace… ICG The government should work toward a partnership with religious authorities to enable them to play a stabilising role. Executive Summary The 2012 crisis, during which self-proclaimed jihadi armed groups took centre stage, intensified the debate on the role of Islam in Malian society and… Although religious leaders have become powerful lobbyists, public ... Read More »

UN seeks $421 million for African refugee flow

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MILAN:The United Nations’ refugee agency is appealing for $421.2 million to help improve protection of refugees in sub-Saharan and North Africa and back efforts in… AP ArabNews The UN High Commissioner for Refugees said Tuesday the plan, which incorporates previous appeals, is needed “to help provide meaningful alternatives to refugees and others undertaking… It says 2,171 refugees and migrants were reported dead or missing as they tried to cross the central Mediterranean in this… UN seeks $421… Read More »

Tasoula Hadjitofi – from refugee to icon hunter

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A refugee’s quest to reclaim her nation’s stolen heritage Tasoula Hadjitofi will discuss her experiences of war and injustice; her ongoing campaign to preserve cultural heritage worldwide and her tireless work to combat art trafficking. In 1974 Tasoula Hadjitofi and her family were forced to flee their home in Famagusta, Cyprus during the Turkish invasion. As a refugee living in the Netherlands, Tasoula devoted her life to infiltrating and exposing the shady underworld of art traffickers. It all began when ... Read More »

Diplomats to Tillerson: don’t eliminate state department’s refugee office

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National security officials are arguing the elimination the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration would have ‘profound and negative implications’ Reuters in Washington The Guardian Forty former US diplomats and national security officials urged the secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, not to eliminate the state department office that handles refugees, in a letter seen by Reuters on Monday. The letter argued that a Trump administration proposal to transfer the… Diplomats to Tillerson… Read More »

Border Force: A threat to us all

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Human rights advocate and barrister Julian Burnside AO discusses Border Force’s increased interest in Australian citizens, as PM Malcolm Turnbull announces greater powers for the Australian Defence… IA NEVER FORGET the lesson of Martin Niemöller. The lesson is: when governments misbehave, it’s just a matter of time before they will come for you. Recently, two Australian citizens arrived back in Australia after a long overnight flight. They had nothing to declare and… Border Force: A… Read More »

Screening those at risk of psychosis may help prevent violence, reduce stigma

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Study shows that violent ideation before first psychotic episode highly correlates with violent acts Columbia University Medical Center EurekAlert! A new study of young persons at clinical high-risk of developing psychosis has identified measures of violence potential that may be useful in predicting both the increased risk of future violent behavior and… The article, A Longitudinal Study of Violent Behavior in a Psychosis-Risk Cohort, by Gary Brucato, PhD, Ragy Girgis, MD and colleagues at… Screening those at… Read More »

Australia doesn’t have a constitutional right protecting freedom of the person – it needs one

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The recent wrongful detention of two Australian citizens by immigration authorities highlights that our Constitution offers inadequate protection for freedom of the… Bede Harris The Conversation This is not the first time Australian citizens have been unlawfully detained. In 2001, Vivian Solon, who had suffered a head injury, was deported even though she told immigration officials she was an… In 2004, Cornelia Rau, also an Australian citizen, was held in immigration detention after she was unable to identify herself because ... Read More »

Exclusive: Iran’s Foreign Minister Warns Donald Trump That Tehran Can Abandon the Nuclear Deal

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TNI’s Jacob Heilbrunn just sat down with Tehran’s top diplomat—and he was not happy with the Trump administration. Mohammad Javad Zarif The National Interest Jacob Heilbrunn, editor of the National Interest, spoke with Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran’s foreign minister in an interview in New York on Monday, July 17, 2017. The following is a lightly… Jacob Heilbrunn: Yesterday you were on Fareed Zakaria’s show. And if, as you alleged, the Trump administration is indeed violating the… Exclusive: Iran’s Foreign… Read More »

Will the Americans Abandon Us?

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Our Senior Analyst for Syria Noah Bonsey visits the north east of the country to meet a Syrian Kurdish organisation that has made the region relatively secure, yet knows that it still has far to go in its… Noah Bonsey ICG QAMISHLI, Syria ­– Abd al-Menaam picks me up as usual from the customs shed on the Syrian bank of the Tigris… As we drive west toward the town of Qamishli, we pass beneath a hilltop command centre bombed by ... Read More »

We need more than just laws to ensure responsible alcohol service

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Australian law prohibits the sale of alcohol to drunk people. Despite the shifting sands of alcohol policy, Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) legislation has remained a stalwart… Jason Ferris Adam Winstock Larissa Maier Renee Zahnow The Conversation In Australia, RSA imposes mandatory training requirements for liquor industry workers to educate alcohol servers about signs of intoxication, when to refuse service, and the harms of over… Internationally, RSA training is considered a cost-effective strategy to reduce the sale of alcohol to ... Read More »

Major German Universities Cancel Elsevier Contracts

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These institutions join around 60 others that hope to put increasing pressure on the publishing giant in ongoing negotiations for a new nationwide licensing… Diana Kwon The Scientist In Germany, the fight for open access and favorable pricing for journals is getting heated. At the end of last month (June 30), four major academic institutions in Berlin announced that they would not renew their subscriptions with the Dutch publishing giant Elsevier once they end this… Then on July 7, nine ... Read More »

Military powers for terror attacks ‘cumbersome’ and need streamlining, Malcolm Turnbulls says

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State governments will still decide whether they want help from the military to handle terrorist incidents and police will remain the first responders under flagged changes, Prime Minister Malcolm… David Wroe The Sydney Morning Herald Announcing planned changes to the law at Holsworthy Barracks in Sydney on Monday morning, Mr Turnbull said the current process for calling in the military to help police during a terrorist attack was “very cumbersome” and… Flanked by the Chief of the Defence Force Mark ... Read More »

Ex-chief minister Jon Stanhope wants corporate manslaughter laws for government

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A former ACT chief minister believes the territory government should introduce corporate manslaughter laws to improve accountability for… Katie Burgess The Canberra Times In his submission to an ACT Legislative Assembly inquiry into the creation of an Independent Integrity Commission, Jon Stanhope also said all “problematic” ACT Policing incidents should be reviewed externally to dispel… Pointing to the United Kingdom as an example, Mr Stanhope said there was scope for an… Ex-chief minister Jon… Read More »

‘We’re Headed Toward One of the Greatest Divisions in the History of the Jewish People’

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A small, vocal group of Conservative rabbis is pushing the movement to accept marriages between Jews and non-Jews. Emma Green  The Atlantic The fight is really about the future of the religion. In late June, 19 rabbis gathered in New York City for an urgent meeting. It wasn’t secret, exactly, but it certainly wasn’t public. The Jewish leaders—all members of the Conservative movement’s Rabbinical Assembly, except for two—were there to decide what to do about… •‘We’re Headed Toward… Read More »

Erdoğan backs death penalty on Turkey coup attempt anniversary

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President tells crowd of thousands that Turkey will ‘cut the heads off’ traitors, a year after soldiers tried to topple government Kareem Shaheen in Ankara The Guardian The Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, reiterated his support for reinstating the death penalty and threatened to cut off traitors’ heads in an a… Tens of thousands of people gathered in Istanbul, marching to the Bosphorus Bridge where 36 people were killed by coup soldiers exactly a year ago, for the first of ... Read More »

A Natural Gas War Is Brewing In The Mediterranean

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Offshore gas developments in the East Mediterranean region are heating up. Cyril Widdershoven OilPrice Alongside increased exploration efforts and a possible gas pipeline deal between Turkey and Israel, geopolitical risks are increasing too. While commercial prospects are starting to look good for all parties, a real military conflict is also brewing and may come to a head if Cyprus, Greece and Turkey are not able to find a… Optimism has been high of late about the prospects of offshore Cyprus ... Read More »