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  • Yemen
  • International Organizations

Yemen: Huthi forces block vital hospital supplies fuelling humanitarian crisis in Ta’iz

The Huthi armed group and forces allied to it are endangering the lives of thousands of civilians in the southern city of Ta’iz by blocking the entry of crucial medical supplies and food over the past three months, in blatant violation of international humanitarian law, said Amnesty International. Testimony gathered by the organization from 22 residents and medical staff living in Yemen’s third largest city paints an alarming picture of civilian suffering and hardship.

Date:
9 February 2016
  • News
  • Americas
  • Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

Nicaragua side-lines local communities over multi-billion dollar canal

Nicaragua’s reckless handling of a multi-billion dollar project that will see a canal cutting the country in two will displace tens of thousands of people putting their livelihoods at risk, said Amnesty International after leaders from three affected indigenous and afro-descendent Rama-Kriol communities presented an appeal to the country’s top court. “The fact that Nicaragua is planning to go ahead with a mega project that will destroy the lives of many communities without even properly taking their views into consideration is outrageous,” said Erika Guevara, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

Date:
9 February 2016
  • News

Sir Richard Branson joins Amnesty International’s Global Council

Entrepreneur and philanthropist Sir Richard Branson is to join Amnesty International’s prestigious Global Council, the organization announced today. “As a consistent and very visible advocate on social justice issues, Sir Richard Branson’s voice joining Amnesty's will be a force multiplier. An influential global figure, his efforts will help our messages reach more people around the world mobilizing them to stand up for human rights,” said Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International.

Date:
9 February 2016
  • News
  • Americas
  • Detention

Five frightening facts about Mexico the Pope should be aware of

Mexico is suffering a human rights crisis of epidemic proportions with disappearances, torture, mass graves and brutal murders so common they have become part of day-to-day life. As he prepares to make his first trip to Mexico, here are five things Pope Francis should be aware of before setting foot on the country. 1. Thousands of people have been killed in the context of the so-called “war against organized crime”, but no one knows exactly how manyFor the second year in a row, the Mexican authorities have failed to publish any statistics on the number of people killed or wounded in clashes with the police and military forces, as part of their ill-conceived and utterly ineffective fight against organized crime.

Date:
9 February 2016
  • News
  • Africa
  • Armed Groups

CAR: Strengthen peacekeepers to prevent renewed violence

Civilians in Central African Republic (CAR) remain at risk of deadly violence and instability unless serious weaknesses in the United Nation’s peacekeeping mission, MINUSCA, are urgently addressed, Amnesty International said in a new report published today. With a new president to be elected in less than a week, Amnesty’s report Mandated to protect, equipped to succeed? Strengthening peacekeeping in Central African Republic analyses   how major gaps in personnel and equipment resulted in UN peacekeepers failure to prevent and contain a serious outbreak of violence in Bangui in September 2015 that led to the death of over 75 people, including many civilians.

Date:
8 February 2016
  • News
  • Iraq
  • Armed Conflict

Iraq: Authorities turn blind eye to Shi’a militia vicious reprisal killings

The Iraqi authorities’ failure to protect Sunni civilians from a wave of reprisal attacks by Shi’a militia last month is another example of widespread impunity for what are clearly war crimes, said Amnesty International today. Abductions, killings and burning of homes and property of the Sunni community in and around the city of Muqdadiya started on 11 January after appalling bomb attacks that killed at least 27 civilians, carried out by the armed group calling itself Islamic State.

Date:
5 February 2016
  • News
  • Syria
  • War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity

Turkey: Authorities must ensure safe passage for Syrians fleeing Aleppo attacks

Tens of thousands of people displaced by joint Russian and Syrian government attacks in the north of Syria must be allowed to cross the border to safety in Turkey, Amnesty International said today amid reports that thousands of people are waiting at border gates that remain closed. Reports suggest that between 40,000 and 70,000 people are on the move after fleeing heavy fighting near the city of Aleppo.

Date:
5 February 2016
  • News
  • China
  • Censorship and Free Speech

China: Authorities’ revelations on detained Hong Kong booksellers “smoke and mirrors”

The Chinese authorities are showing total contempt for due process and the rule of law in the case of five detained Hong Kong booksellers, Amnesty International said, after police in Guangdong in southern China confirmed that three of the men missing since last October are in their custody and being investigated. Guangdong police confirmed late on Thursday that Lui Por, Cheung Chi-ping and Lam Wing-kee are suspected of “illegal activity”.

Date:
5 February 2016
  • News
  • Americas
  • Discrimination

Haiti, we have a problem …

Less than a week from now, on 7 February, a new President should take office in Haiti. But there is a problem: Haiti does not have a new president. Relations between President Michel Martelly’s party, Tèt Kale, and the opposition were tense during most of the Martelly’s tenure. But they reached unprecedented levels after the first round of presidential elections on 25 October. As a consequence, the runoff, initially set for 27 December, was postponed twice and now there isn’t even a new date on the books.

Date:
5 February 2016
  • News
  • Syria
  • Refugees

'Now turn pledges into action’ - NGO verdict on Supporting Syria donors’ conference

An international coalition of over 30 non-governmental organisations today welcomed the ambition demonstrated at the ‘Supporting Syria And the Region’ donor conference in London to increase the scale and scope of the humanitarian response to the Syria crisis, but said that overall pledges for 2016 fell more than $3 billion short of what was urgently needed. The NGOs, including Amnesty International, Oxfam, Sawa Aid and Development, and Islamic Relief, applauded the generosity of some donors while encouraging others also to pledge their fair share.

Date:
4 February 2016
  • News
  • France
  • Justice Systems

France: Disproportionate emergency measures leave hundreds traumatized

Heavy-handed emergency measures, including late night house raids and assigned residence orders, have trampled on the rights of hundreds of men, women and children, leaving them traumatized and stigmatized, according to a new briefing released by Amnesty International today ahead of Friday’s French Parliamentary debate on entrenching emergency measures in the constitution. Upturned lives: The disproportionate impact of France's state of emergency details how, since the state of emergency was declared shortly after the 13 November 2015 Paris attacks, more than 3,242 house searches have been conducted and more than 400 assigned residence orders imposed.

Date:
4 February 2016
  • News
  • Sierra Leone
  • Right to Health

Sierra Leone: Sign Bill Allowing Safe Abortions

Sierra Leone’s president, Ernest Bai Koroma, should sign into law a bill that would increase women’s access to safe and legal abortion, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International said today in a letter they and five Sierra Leonean rights groups sent to President Koroma. In December 2015, the Sierra Leonean parliament overwhelmingly passed the Safe Abortion Act 2015, which would permit access to abortion during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, after which it would be permitted until week 24 in cases of rape, incest, or health risk to the fetus or the woman or girl.

Date:
4 February 2016
  • News
  • Americas
  • Discrimination

Dominican Republic’s absurd laws shatter star boxer’s promising career

When Adonis Peguero Louis won the pre-selection test to join the Dominican Republic’s national boxing team, the young man’s future played before him. As if watching a film, he saw himself headlining fights across the country, travelling to arenas in cities he had only visited through the small TV screen that rests in the corner of his crammed living room, coming face-to-face with his childhood heroes.

Date:
4 February 2016
  • News
  • Syria
  • Refugees

Syria's refugee crisis in numbers

Refugees in the region More than 4. 5 million refugees from Syria are in just five countries Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Egypt: Turkey hosts 2. 5 million refugees from Syria, more than any other country worldwide Lebanon hosts approximately 1. 1 million refugees from Syria which amounts to around one in five people in the country Jordan hosts approximately 635,324 refugees from Syria, which amounts to about 10% of the population Iraq where 3.

Date:
3 February 2016
  • News
  • Malawi
  • Killings and Disappearances

Malawi: Ritual murders of people with albinism must end

The killing of a woman with albinism in Malawi highlights the government’s shocking failure to protect the right to life and personal security of this vulnerable minority, said Amnesty International. The mutilated body of Eunice Phiri, a 53-year-old woman with albinism, was found on 28 January in the Kasungu National Park. Her arms had been cut off – a practice common with ritual murders where people with albinism are killed for their body parts which are sold for use in witchcraft.

Date:
3 February 2016
  • News
  • Syria
  • Refugees

World leaders in London must deliver transformational new deal for Syrian refugees and host countries

World leaders in London this week for a high-level conference on Syria must commit to an ambitious and transformational new multi-billion dollar deal for Syrian refugees and the countries hosting them in the region, a global coalition of more than ninety humanitarian and human rights groups said today. The coalition, including organisations such as the Malala Fund, Oxfam and Amnesty International, said that to be a success, the conference - co-hosted by the UK, Germany, Norway, Kuwait and the UN - must deliver a bold new plan for Syrian refugees and the communities hosting them.

Date:
3 February 2016