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Citizens for Justice and Peace

Eye on rights

China collecting DNA from all residents of its Xinjiang territory

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has revealed that Chinese authorities are collecting fingerprints, DNA samples and other biometric data from all residents aged 12 to 65 in Xinjiang, a far western region of the country, where many minorities, including over 11 million Uighurs, a Muslim minority, live. For “focus personnel”, a term used to identify those…

ILO: Systematic child labour ends in Uzbekistan

International Labour Organisation (ILO) monitors have found that the systematic use of child labour in Uzbekistan’s cotton harvest has ended in recent years, and action is being taken to tackle the use of forced labour as well. Indications of this emerged when Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev addressed the United Nations General Assembly in September, after…

UN Secretary-General urges Myanmar to free Reuters journalists

Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, both Myanmar citizens who were working on the persecuted Rohingya minority in Myanmar’s Rakhine state, were arrested this week. They have been arrested under the Official Secrets Act, which carries a maximum sentence of 14 years in prison. Reuters reported that police officers they were meeting with…

FCC eliminates net neutrality rules

The United States’ Federal Communications Commission voted 3-2 to eliminate the open internet rules that were adopted during President Barack Obama’s administration in 2015. Scrapping these rules allows internet service providers (ISPs) to slow or block the delivery of websites and services, and create ‘fast lanes’ to deliver websites to customers who pay more. The…

Report outlines crimes against humanity in North Korea’s political prisons

A report by the International Bar Association (IBA) War Crimes Committee, authored by three international judges, and involving interviews with several North Korean defectors, outlines major crimes against humanity committed in the country’s political prisons. According to the IBA’s announcement of the report, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and “other regime officials should be prosecuted…

Number of imprisoned journalists hits record high

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has found that the number of journalists in prison globally reached a new record in 2017, exceeding the previous record in 2016. CPJ, in its annual prison census, discovered that 262 journalists are currently imprisoned, with 134 of these, or 51%, in China, Egypt, and Turkey. In 2016, the…

Indonesia’s Constitutional Court blocks bid to criminalise gay sex

Indonesia’s Constitutional Court voted 5-4 to reject a petition to criminalise extramarital and gay sex. Last year, Family Love Alliance, a conservative group, petitioned the court to amend the criminal code to outlaw sex outside of marriage and homosexual acts. The court rejected the petition, contending that lawmakers, not the Constitution Court, had the authority…

UN official says 8.4 million in Yemen “a step away from famine”

Jamie McGoldrick, the United Nations’ humanitarian coordinator for Yemen, recently issued a statement calling for “sustained and unimpeded humanitarian access” to the country, saying that “the lives of millions of people, including 8.4 million Yemenis who are a step away from famine, hinge on our ability to continue our operations and to provide health, safe…

UN migration body urges Facebook to curb People Smugglers

The United Nations’ migration agency, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), has urged social media firms, including Facebook, to up their efforts in curbing people smugglers using their platforms. IOM spokesman Leonard Doyle has said people smugglers frequently use Facebook for unlawful deals to take migrants to Libya, where they could potentially be detailed, tortured,…

High Commissioner’s 10th Dialogue on Protection Challenges

The High Commissioner’s 10th Dialogue on Protection Challenges, which is aimed at discussing the proposed Global Compact on Refugees is taking place on December 12-13 in Geneva, Switzerland. In his speech opening the dialogue, Filippo Grandi, the United nations High Commissioner for Refugees cautioned that forced displacement has worsened a year after the New York…

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