The Global Human Rights Bulletin

Publication of the New York Law School LWOB Student Division

North America

Houston Mayor Introduces Anti-Discrimination Ordinance
Source: Houston Chronicle

Mayor Annise Parker, the first openly gay mayor of a major U.S. city, unveiled a proposed ordinance that would ban discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, as well as sexual orientation and gender identity. Religious institutions and businesses employing fewer than fifty people would be exempt from compliance.

Louisiana Law Discriminates Against LGBTQ Citizens 
Source: New York Times

The Louisiana House voted to reject a bill repealing the state’s “crimes against nature” law, which allows for the prosecution of adults engaged in oral or anal sex. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that anti-sodomy laws are unconstitutional, and HRW LGBT director says the laws are an invitation for law enforcement to intimidate and harass.

Asia

China Jails Anti-Corruption Activists
Source: BBC News – China

Chinese Court jails four anti-corruption activists who sought government transparency.  The sentences vary from two to four years for the crime of gathering crowds to disrupt public order.  Chinese President Xi Jinping’s maintains the government is fighting corruption, but continues to silence those calling for governmental transparency.

Cooperation Over WWII Sexual Slavery
Source: BBC News

Korean and Japanese officials met in a first diplomatic attempt to discuss the issue of sex slavery between the two countries and to negotiate adequate compensation for Korean women enslaved by the Japanese army in World War II. Japan’s sudden willingness to cooperate on this issue precedes a tripartite summit between Korea, Japan, and the United States.

 

Latin America

Chilean Anti-Hate Law Must be Reformed
Source: Santiago Times

Movilh, the largest gay rights group in Chile, has called for reform of the anti-hate law. Currently, the burden of proof is on the victim to show that there was a homophobic aspect to the attack. The Movilh President argues that the law is a step in the right direction, but is riddled with flaws.

UN-CRPD Alleges Violations in Argentinian Prison
Source: UN News Centre

The UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities found that an Argentine jail violated the rights of disabled prisoner’s access to facilities. A prisoner filed a complaint with the committee because the bathrooms were inaccessible by wheelchair. While there were procedures implemented for those with disabilities, the Committee found they were insufficient.

Africa

Schoolgirls’ Rescue Contemplated Amidst Threats
Source: AllAfrica- Vanguard

Professor Wole Soyinka and the BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights are fighting to recover 230 schoolgirls abducted by the Boko Haram. Members of BAOBAB wish to embark on a search and rescue mission. The Islamic sect, however, has threatened to kill the female students should the search for them continue.

Kenya Undeterred In HIV Battle
Source: Daily Nation

Implementing a strict anti-retroviral treatment over the past five years, Kenya is raging one of the best fights against HIV in the world. A recent report suggests Kenya has successfully worked toward both treatment and prevention of the virus, but a reallocation of financial resources propelling this fight could benefit the country even further.

 

Europe

Spain Fires at African Immigrants
Source: New York Times

Despite seven-yard-high barriers erected for the very purpose of keeping out outsiders, African immigrants have increasingly been trying to cross over to Spain to escape conditions of war and poverty. This past month, Spanish police fired at about 250 immigrants as they were attempting to climb the fences. About fifteen drowned bodies were recovered from the water.

Lingering Sexism in the United Kingdom
Source: The Guardian

A recent report by the United Nations special rapporteur, Rashida Manjoo, highlights persistent gender inequality in the United Kingdom. Instead of endeavoring to address the pervasiveness of sexism and gender bias, or at least acknowledging the troubling figures of incidents of rape and domestic violence, Manjoo’s report was met with reluctance and outright denial by the media.

Middle East

Social Media and Terrorism Cross Paths
Source: The Atlantic

Twitter has become useful for those on both sides of the terrorism dynamic. During chaotic times, such as terrorist attacks, networks jam and access is blocked. When networks are inaccessible, the newly developed “I am Alive” application serves to send out “I am Alive” tweets with one touch to reach concerned family and friends.

Lebanon’s First Domestic Violence Law 
Source: Al Jazeera

Lebanon passed its first domestic violence law this March leading to widespread protest among the nation’s women and rights groups for its lack of breadth. Women’s rights in the nation have long been an issue with strong opposition coming from the nation’s leading religious authority.

 

Central Asia

Man Killed in Police Custody
Source: The Times of India

The family of Agnelo Valdaris intends to move the Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission to investigate the death of Valdaris while in police custody. The Government Railway Police claims Valdaris was detained for chain snatching, and was killed while escaping from the police. The Valdaris family, however, maintains that Valdaris was falsely accused, illegally detained and beaten to death.

Bill Immunizing Human Rights Violation 
Source: UN News Centre
The UN High Commissioner expressed concern over a Nepalese Parliament bill that would allow amnesty for serious human rights violations. The bill’s amnesty provisions would allow two state commissions to grant immunity for various criminal offenses. These provisions mirror those in an ordinance passed last year, but which were invalidated by the Nepalese Supreme Court.

 

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer

Information in the Global Human Rights Bulletin does not represent the positions or views of Lawyers Without Borders, a neutral non-profit organization. The Global Human Rights Bulletin is published by the NYLS Student Division independently from its affiliation with Lawyers Without Borders.