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Posts Categorized: International News

Truth commission planned in Guinea

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President-elect Alpha Conde has announced Guineas plan to form “a truth and reconciliation commission aimed at healing the wounds of ethnic and political violence that has plagued the West African country for decades”. The truth commission will be modelled after the post-apartheid commission in South Africa formed by Nelson Mandela. Conde stated that “I know… Read more »

UK proposes changes to universal jurisdiction law

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A guest post by Geraldine Coughlan (AFP) Britain is seeking to soothe strained ties with Israel by publishing an amendment to a law that puts visiting officials at risk of arrest for alleged war crimes, sparking outrage from rights groups. Foreign Secretary William Hague said the change would ensure that private arrest warrants for offences… Read more »

ICJ update: DRC vs. Guinea

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A guest post by Geraldine Coughlan The International Court of Justice in The Hague on Tuesday ordered the Democratic Republic of Congo to compensate Guinea for the arrest and arbitrary detention of a businessman in late 1995. “The Democratic Republic of Congo is under obligation to make appropriate reparation, in the form of compensation, to… Read more »

Al-Bashir attending Africa-EU summit in Libya next week

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Thabo Mbeki, former South African President, stated that President Al-Bashir will attend the African-EU summit in Libya. The ICC has previously issued an arrest warrant against Al-Bashir “alleging he masterminded genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity during the country’s seven-year conflict in the Dafur region.” Libya, the host of the summit is not a… Read more »

First modern piracy trial in Germany

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Germany’s first modern piracy trial started today with ten suspected Somalian pirates on the stand. The pirates were captured when a German cargo ship was hijacked in April. The suspected pirates “are accused of boarding the German-flagged MV Taipan at gunpoint in April with the aim of demanding a ransom.” The suspects consist of seven… Read more »

United Nations Security Council discussing situation in Sudan

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A guest post by Natalie Simpson The United Nations Security Council met today in New York to discuss the situation in Sudan in light of the upcoming referendums on self-determination to be held in Southern Sudan in January 2011.    Mr Ban Ki Moon (Secretary General of the UN), Mr Thabo Mbeki (chairperson of the AU High Level Implementation Panel… Read more »

Rights Displaced – A Human Rights Watch Report

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HRW has published a report documenting human rights problems faced by people sent back to Kosovo from Western Europe. According to the report problems include the issuance of identity documents as well as the regaining of previously owned property. In addition, people returning are faced with problems accessing health care, employment as well as various… Read more »

Convention on Cluster Munitions – Lebanon ratifies the ban

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On 5 November 2010, Lebanon ratified the ban on cluster munitions. The Lebanese parliament had previously approved the ratification of the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 17 August 2010. Human Rights Watch stressed that it is the sad history of Lebanon with this sort of weapons making this ratification especially poignant. HRW further highlights that… Read more »

Burma: first elections to be held in 20 years

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On 7 November 2010, first elections will take place in Burma in 20 years. However, the elections are overshadowed by “a climate of fear, intimidation, and resignation” to “ensure continued military rule with a civilian façade” reports Human Rights Watch. HRW states that the “elections are about elite military transformation, not democratic transition, and offer… Read more »

Rwanda: More Trouble in Paradise?

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In August, The Economist published an article entitled “President Kagame Under Scrutiny”. It drew attention to the recent re-election of President Kagame and the context of “murder, censorship and meaningful opposition” in which it took place: http://www.economist.com/node/16750119 On Friday, The Independent featured a piece on Paul Rusebagina, the “Hero” of “Hotel Rwanda” who is credited… Read more »

Omar Khadr Sentenced to Eight Years following Plea Bargain

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Omar Khadr, the last Westerner detained in Guantanamo Bay has been sentenced by a military judge to 8 years imprisonment following his recent plea baragin.  A military panel had recommended 40 years. Khadr pled guilty on 25 October to five war crimes including murder for throwing a grenade that killed an American special forces doctor,… Read more »

Khandaker Mahbub denied leave to travel abroad

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The Bangladesh Supreme Court Bar Association President Mr Khandaker Mahbub has been denied leave by his government to travel abroad. It is believed he wished to travel with his wife to the UK. Mr Mahbub hosted the SCBA Human Rights Seminar in Dakhar on 3 October 2010 at which Steven Kay QC and Toby Cadman… Read more »

Wilders – Trial De Novo – New Judges After Bias Claim

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Guest Post by Geraldine Coughlan The collapse of the high-profile trial of the Dutch right-wing MP Geert Wilders, on charges of inciting hatred and discrimination against Muslims, has caused uproar in the Netherlands. A special panel of judges at the Amsterdam Court of Appeal decided to replace the trial judges after Mr. Wilders accused them… Read more »

Elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina today

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General elections are taking place in BiH today. Bosnians are asked to vote for the leaders of the central government, the Republika Srpska as well as the Muslim-Croat Federation. Furthermore, they will elect the representatives of the central parliament as well as the two regional assemblies. The election campaigns were dominated by “nationalist issues rather… Read more »

ICJ Update – Territorial and Maritime Dispute (Nicaragua v. Colombia): ICJ to hold public hearings in October 2010 concerning Costa Rica’s and Hondura’s applications for permission to intervene

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The ICJ will hold hearings from 11 to 22 October 2010 dealing with Costa Rica’s and Hondura’s applications for permission to intervene in the case regarding the Territorial and Maritime Dispute between Nicaragua and Colombia. In December 2001, Nicaragua initiated legal proceedings against Colombia “in respect of a dispute concerning ‘a group of related legal… Read more »

Uganda Wants Permanent Seat On UN Security Council For Africa

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Uganda wants a permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council for Africa to ensure the continent’s interests are protected, Ugandan president, Yoweri Museveni was quoted as stating last week. “The Council needs greater credibility, legitimacy and representation. It is an injustice that the entire continent of Africa, with 53 member states and a population… Read more »

Amnesty International Report Outlines Concerns over Rwanda’s “genocide ideology” and “sectarianism” laws

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In a Report published on 31 August 2010 Amnesty International have outlined concerns over Rwanda’s laws on “genocide ideology” and “sectarianism”. These laws were introduced following the 1994 Rwandan genocide. Up to 800,000 Rwandans were killed during the 1994 genocide, most of them ethnic Tutsi, but also some Hutu who opposed this organized killing and the… Read more »