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Ethiopia’s Ginbot 7 opposition movement suspends armed resistance

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An Ethiopian rebel group has suspended its armed resistance against the government. BBC Ginbot 7 said Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s reforms had given it hope that “genuine democracy” may be “a real possibility”. Earlier, the government said it had unblocked 264 websites and TV channels. This is the latest of numerous changes made since Mr Abiy came to office in April, relaxing the state’s previously tight grip on… Ginbot 7, which is based in neighbouring Eritrea, had been designated a… ... Read More »

Yemen Conflict Alert: Last Chance to Prevent a Destructive Hodeida Battle

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The fate of Hodeida hangs in the balance as UAE-backed Yemeni forces poise for what will be a prolonged and destructive battle to expel Huthi rebels. ICG A real but fleeting opportunity exists to avert catastrophe through a UN-mediated solution that safeguards all sides’ interests. The battle for Hodeida is reaching the point of no return. UAE-backed Yemeni forces are poised to begin operations to take this Red Sea port and city of 600,000 from Huthi rebels. This is the ... Read More »

Erdogan Is Making the Ottoman Empire Great Again

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Turkey is leveraging tradition to expand its power in Europe — but the history cuts both ways. Michael Colborne, Maxim Edwards FP SARAJEVO — Not every Turkish president can come to Sarajevo and get an endorsement from both heaven and earth, but Recep Tayyip Erdogan has managed to pull it off. At a pre-election rally for Erdogan in the Bosnian capital last month, Bakir Izetbegovic, the Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim) chairman of Bosnia’s tripartite presidency and son of the country’s first ... Read More »

Send them to Taiwan: Turnbull government’s secret refugee deal revealed

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The Turnbull government has signed a deal to send refugees on Nauru who need urgent medical care to Taiwan, in an undisclosed arrangement aimed at stopping them from applying to stay in Australia after being treated in local hospitals. David Wroe The Age Fairfax Media can reveal Australia signed a memorandum of understanding with Taiwan – which is not a signatory to the 1951 Refugee Convention – in September last year that has so far seen about five refugees flown ... Read More »

Donald Trump makes Time cover again, this time over US-Mexico border immigration crisis

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Donald Trump has got himself another Time magazine cover, but it’s probably not one he’ll be rushing to get his hands on. ABC The iconic American weekly news magazine published its latest front page and it was quickly being shared across the internet. It draws on the immigration crisis on the US-Mexico border and features the President looking down over a crying toddler. That crying toddler is a two-year-old Honduran, who was captured in a photo with her mother that ... Read More »

Strengthened hate speech laws pass NSW Parliament in ‘great day’ for Australia

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Inciting violence against a community or person based on their race in New South Wales could result in three years in jail under new laws which have passed State Parliament. Meredith Griffiths ABC The Keep New South Wales Safe Alliance, a coalition of about 31 community organisations and leaders, has been lobbying for the changes for three years, saying that previous provisions in the Anti-Discrimination Act had not led to a… They described the passing as a “great day for ... Read More »

Victoria passes historic law to create Indigenous treaty framework

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It is the first ever Australian legislation stating intent to negotiate a treaty Calla Wahlquist The Guardian The Victoria parliament has passed legislation that will create a framework for negotiating a treaty with Aboriginal people. It is the first time legislation stating a formal intent to negotiate a treaty or treaties with Aboriginal people has ever been adopted by an Australian parliament, and comes as a federal parliamentary committee conducts hearings to examine national options for… Other jurisdictions have also ... Read More »

The surprising corporate response to a global crisis

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THIS week, it was revealed that the level of forced displacement globally has reached a new, alarming high. Naomi Steer The Daily Telegraph Some 68.5 million people are now displaced according to UNHCR’s annual Global Trends report. That’s one in every 110 people in the world. More than half are children. On top of this, the report shows the vast majority — 85 per cent — of displaced people are hosted in developing countries that simply don’t have the resources ... Read More »

Thailand: Resuming Death Penalty a Major Setback

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Government Executes a Prisoner After 9-Year Moratorium (New York) – The Thai government should halt further executions and publicly resume its de facto moratorium on the use of the death penalty, Human Rights Watch said today. HRW Thai authorities executed a 26-year-old man by lethal injection on June 18, 2018, the country’s first execution since August 2009. “Thailand’s resumed use of the death penalty marks a major setback for human rights,” said Brad Adams, Asia director. “The Thai government’s many pledges ... Read More »

More time needed to achieve peace, South Sudan rebels say

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JUBA (Reuters) – South Sudanese rebels said on Thursday that more time is needed to secure lasting peace in the country and it would be necessary to address the root causes of a civil war. Denis Dumo “There is no shortcut to peace,” the group said in a statement after peace talks in Ethiopia between its leader Riek Machar and President Salva Kiir, the first time the two men had met since… SPLM/SPLA (IO) said the solution to the five-year ... Read More »

New Yorker cover shows migrant children hiding at Statue of Liberty’s feet

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The latest cover of The New Yorker takes on President Trump‘s immigration policies, showing migrant children hiding at the feet of the Statue of Liberty. Aris Folley The Hill The issue, which is slated to hit shelves on July 2, features artwork showing five migrant children hiding underneath the robe of Lady Liberty, gripping her legs… “I can’t watch TV news anymore; it’s always people yelling at each other or… There’s always a background drone of outrage, it seems. Stories ... Read More »

How a photo research project gives refugee women a voice in resettlement policy

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Between 2000 and 2017, the number of refugees and asylum seekers globally increased from 16 to 26 million. Authors: The Conversation In 2016, women made up 49% of global refugees. Dominant representations of refugee women are that of vulnerable and helpless victims. This disregards women’s agency, voice, and deep desire for education and social enterprise. Australia’s refugee intake is expected to increase to 18,750 in 2018-19, the largest intake in 30 years. In 1989, Australia established a “Woman at Risk” ... Read More »

UN Human Rights Council Should Act on Venezuela

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Venezuelan Crisis needs to be a Council Priority Leila Swan HRW No one was surprised when Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro was re-elected last May, or when the opposition alleged voting irregularities. Unofficial reports estimated low voter turnout, less than 40%, despite government officials’ frantic attempts to increase participation. Upon hearing the results, Maduro sang victory, claiming “The whole of Venezuela has triumphed! Democracy has triumphed! Peace has triumphed!”. Yet the elections were rejected by democracies world-wide. The Lima Group – comprised… UN ... Read More »

Risky Business: The Duque Government’s Approach to Peace in Colombia

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Colombia’s president-elect campaigned on a pledge to “modify” the 2016 peace with the FARC guerrillas, despite its goal of reducing the rural inequality underlying that insurgency. T he new government should steer clear of hardline policies that alienate the countryside and hinder the ex-guerrilla’s path to civilian life. ICG What’s new? Iván Duque, from the Democratic Centre party, won Colombia’s presidential election and assumes office on 7 August 2018. His party and… Why does it matter? Colombia’s transition from war ... Read More »