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  • Censorship and Free Speech

Turkey Could Be Taking A Big Step Backwards In Human Rights

Please note this article first appeared on Time. com here. It’s rush hour on Istanbul’s Bosphorus Bridge. Queues of cars jostle for position, the noise of horns fills the air, a young man selling Turkish flags weaves through the traffic carrying dozens of fluttering pieces of fabric; red and emblazoned with the country’s striking crescent and star. Looking at the bustling scene, it’s difficult to believe that just a week ago, this same bridge was the scene of bloody carnage.

Date:
22 July 2016
  • News
  • Europe and Central Asia
  • Censorship and Free Speech

Turkey: State of emergency must not roll back human rights

President Erdogan’s announcement of the imposition of a state of emergency must not pave the way for a roll-back in human rights or be used as a pretext to further clamp down on freedom of expression and protections against arbitrary detention and torture, said Amnesty International today. Following a meeting of the National Security Council and the Turkish cabinet late Wednesday night, President Erdogan announced that the government will impose a state of emergency for at least three months.

Date:
21 July 2016
  • News
  • Libya
  • Armed Conflict

Libya: Lives of captives trapped under fire in Benghazi in danger

Airstrikes by the Libyan National Army are endangering the lives of scores of detainees who are being held captive in Benghazi, said Amnesty International. The organization raised the alarm as new video evidence emerged showing three men who were among an estimated 130 people abducted by the armed group Ansar al-Sharia from a military prison in Benghazi in October 2014. In the video, the first time they’ve been seen since they went missing, the men call for an end to the airstrikes which they say have injured several people and are putting lives at risk.

Date:
21 July 2016
  • News
  • Asia and The Pacific
  • Demonstrations

Hong Kong: Guilty verdicts against student leaders latest blow for freedom of expression

The Hong Kong authorities’ prosecution of three pro-democracy student leaders sends a chilling warning for freedom of expression and peaceful assembly in the city, Amnesty International said today, after Joshua Wong, Alex Chow and Nathan Law were found guilty for their roles in events that triggered 2014’s Umbrella Movement. The city’s Eastern Magistrates’ Court found Joshua Wong and Alex Chow guilty of “taking part in an unlawful assembly”.

Date:
21 July 2016
  • News
  • Ukraine
  • Armed Conflict

Ukraine: Torture and Secret Detention on Both Sides of the Conflict Line

Both the Ukrainian government authorities and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine are holding civilians in prolonged arbitrary and sometimes secret detention and torturing them, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said in a joint report released today. The report “‘You Don’t Exist. ’ Arbitrary Detentions, Enforced Disappearances, and Torture in Eastern Ukraine,” is based on interviews with 40 victims of abuses, their family members, witnesses, victims’ lawyers, and other sources.

Date:
21 July 2016
  • News
  • Gambia
  • Unlawful Detention

Gambia: Prison sentences for opposition leaders continues downward spiral for human rights

The conviction of opposition leader Ousainou Darboe and 18 other peaceful protestors highlights the continuing downward spiral for human rights in Gambia, Amnesty International said today. Following a court decision this afternoon, 19 people including the leader of the United Democratic Party (UDP) have been sentenced to three years imprisonment. They were found guilty on six counts relating to participating in unauthorised protests on 16 April 2016 in the outskirts of the capital Banjul.

Date:
20 July 2016
  • News
  • Syria
  • Armed Groups

Syria: Video showing beheading of boy further evidence of abuses by armed groups

A video showing the beheading of a boy by an armed opposition group in northern Syria is the latest abhorrent signal that some such groups are carrying out serious abuses with impunity, said Amnesty International. The video, believed to be filmed near Aleppo, shows a man standing on the back of a truck carrying out an execution-style killing of a boy. “This horrific video showing the beheading of a boy suggests some members of armed groups have truly plumbed the depths of depravity.

Date:
20 July 2016
  • News
  • Europe and Central Asia
  • Censorship and Free Speech

Ukraine: Car bomb killing of journalist despicable attack on freedom of expression

This morning’s killing of prominent journalist Pavel Sheremet by a car bomb in central Kyiv is a reprehensible act that has sent a shockwave for freedom of expression in Ukraine, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said. Pavel Sheremet, who writes for the country’s top internet news site Ukrayinska Pravda, was driving to work when his car exploded at 7. 45 a. m. “This attack on a journalist is a heinous crime and the ultimate violation of the freedom to expression.

Date:
20 July 2016
  • News
  • Turkey
  • Censorship and Free Speech

Turkey: Media purge threatens freedom of expression

As the sweeping crackdown in Turkey following a failed coup continues, Amnesty International fears that purges are being extended to censor media houses and journalists, including those critical of government policy. “We are witnessing a crackdown of exceptional proportions in Turkey at the moment. While it is understandable, and legitimate, that the government wishes to investigate and punish those responsible for this bloody coup attempt, they must abide by the rule of law and respect freedom of expression,” said Andrew Gardner, Amnesty International’s Turkey researcher.

Date:
20 July 2016
  • News
  • Myanmar
  • Business and Human Rights

Myanmar: Sulphuric acid factory behind health fears must be relocated

The Myanmar government must immediately order the relocation of a sulphuric acid factory built dangerously close to a village, which is continuing to operate despite grave concerns over its health and environmental impact, said Amnesty International today. Residents of Kankone village told Amnesty International on a recent research mission to Myanmar that they are suffering from strong-smelling factory emissions that are causing respiratory, skin and eye problems.

Date:
20 July 2016
  • News
  • Pakistan
  • Honour killings

Pakistan: End impunity for so-called ‘honour’ crimes

The Pakistani authorities must end impunity for so-called ‘honour’ killings and other violence against women, Amnesty International said today. “The tragic killing of Qandeel Baloch, at the hands of her brother, has highlighted the need for urgent action to protect women and men from crimes that are justified as a defence of family honour,” said Champa Patel, Amnesty International's South Asia Director.

Date:
19 July 2016
  • News
  • Middle East and North Africa
  • Armed Conflict

Syria: Alarm over reports of high civilian death toll from US-led airstrikes on Manbij

US-led coalition forces carrying out airstrikes in Syria must redouble efforts to prevent civilian deaths and investigate possible violations of international humanitarian law, Amnesty International urged amid growing reports that scores of men, women and children were killed in their homes in al-Tukhar village, near Manbij, on 18-19 July. Since June, more than 100 civilians are reported to have been killed in suspected coalition attacks on the Manbij area of northern Syria, which has been controlled by the armed group calling itself Islamic State (IS).

Date:
19 July 2016
  • News
  • Nepal
  • Torture and other ill-treatment

Nepal: Investigate police torture of Tharu community members

A new report published today by Amnesty International reveals how members of the indigenous Tharu community in Nepal’s Tarai plains were subjected to arbitrary arrests, torture and other ill-treatment at the hands of the police in connection with the killings of eight security personnel and a child in Tikapur, Kailali district, on 24 August 2015. The report follows interviews that Amnesty International conducted with detainees at Dhanghadi jail, Kailali.

Date:
19 July 2016
  • News
  • Malawi
  • Discrimination

Malawi: Investigate brutal attack against woman with albinism

Authorities must investigate the gruesome attack on Saturday on a woman with albinism and bring those suspected of the crime to justice, Amnesty International said today following the latest in a series of such attacks. According to media reports, unidentified men targeted 51-year-old woman in Chitipa District in the northern region, chopping off her right hand with a machete after forcing their way into her home in the early hours of 16 July 2016.

Date:
18 July 2016
  • News
  • Turkey
  • Detention

Turkey: Human rights in grave danger following coup attempt and subsequent crackdown

Human rights in Turkey are in peril following a bloody coup attempt on Friday 15 July, which resulted in the deaths of at least 208 people and almost 8,000 arrests, Amnesty International said today. Several government officials have suggested reinstating the death penalty as punishment for those found responsible for the failed coup, and the organization is now investigating reports that detainees in Ankara and Istanbul have been subjected to a series of abuses, including ill-treatment in custody and being denied access to lawyers.

Date:
18 July 2016
  • News
  • Iran
  • Detention

Iran is putting political prisoners' lives at risk by denying them medical care

Iran’s authorities are callously toying with the lives of prisoners of conscience and other political prisoners by denying them adequate medical care, putting them at grave risk of death, permanent disability or other irreversible damage to their health, according to a new report by Amnesty International published today. The report, Health taken hostage: Cruel denial of medical care in Iran’s prisons, provides a grim snapshot of health care in the country’s prisons.

Date:
18 July 2016