Canada Knew More about Citizen's Detention
Selected Source: CBC News
Recently uncovered emails reveal the Canadian government knew the Sudanese government had threatened extrajudicial execution of a Montreal man held in Khartoum for six years. Despite being cleared of terrorism charges, Abousfian Abdelrazik remained stranded in Sudan when the Canadian government refused to act. Abdelrazik was returned to Canada last month.
Selected Source: Christian Science Monitor
In response to a rise in reported human rights violations over the past year, Human Rights Watch and other groups have called on the U.S. to suspend counternarcotics assistance to Mexico’s military. Alleged violations by Mexico’s security forces totaled 1,230 in the year 2008.
Western media outlets are quick to cast Thai prisons in a negative light. Although the harsh stereotypes that accompany Western perceptions of Thailand’s criminal justice system carry grains of truth, the reality is that the public knows little about this nation’s prisons. The situation is vastly under-reported and under-researched, partially because outsiders have extremely limited access. The prison system is deeply entrenched within Thai society and difficult to infiltrate. Government officials privatize prison maintenance and control, so the ability to access inmates on a personal level requires a tremendous amount of trust and patience.
Bolivian Minister Repatriated for Sentence
Selected Source: MecroPress
Arce Gomez, former minister of the oppressive Tejada regime, was repatriated to Bolivia where he faces conviction of genocide and other human rights violations. The “Minister of Cocaine” was previously confined to a U.S. federal prison for drug trafficking charges. Bolivian President Morales praised the U.S. and called for extradition of other violators.
Guidebook Discourages Child Labor
Selected Source: The Santiago Times
Following reports of a rise in child labor in Chile, UNICEF and the Catholic Church created and widely distributed a guidebook to help impoverished families find different means of sustaining their lifestyles. Alarmingly, several organizations have reported that the resurgence of child labor is a global trend catalyzed by the economic crisis.
Insecurity in Somalia Restricts Relief Efforts
Selected Source: Daily Nation
Since May 2009, a wave of fighting in Mogadishu has driven 223,000 people from their homes, 22,000 of whom were displaced within a two-week period in July. The World Health Organization provides food to 3.5 million people in the region, but its efforts have been hampered by worsening insecurity, including the looting of U.N. compounds..
Liberia's DDRR Program Closes with Success
Selected Source: The Analyst
Closing ceremonies were recently held to recognize the formal closure of Liberia’s successful Disarmament, Demobilization, Rehabilitation and Reintegration (DDRR) Program, a product of the 2003 Comprehensive Peace Agreement. The DDRR Program collected weapons and helped former combatants, including children, return to civilian life and find alternative livelihoods, among other initiatives.
Selected Source: Human Rights Watch
Lithuania’s Seimas (national parliament) is scheduled to discuss the revival of a previously vetoed law banning any reference to gay, lesbian, or bisexual relations while in a public place. The law was proposed on the belief that any public discussion or display of homosexual subject matter will have a “detrimental effect” on “the development of minors.”
Human Traffickers Drawn to Britain
Selected Source: The London Times
A recent U.K. Home Office research report revealed that human traffickers see Great Britain as a “soft touch” for smuggling illegal immigrants. Various reasons explain Britain’s attractiveness for smuggling, including the susceptibility to bribes by various officials, universality of the English language, high demand for prostitution, and high demand for construction workers.
Selected Source: Gulf News
While the Saudi government asserts that the guardianship system no longer exists, officials in the Kingdom still require Saudi women to obtain a male relative’s permission for basic activities like traveling or receiving medical care. Saudi women await the implementation of a royal pledge to assure their full rights.
Bahraini Women to Pass Citizenship
Selected Source: Khaleej Times
Women in Bahrain, represented by the Supreme Council for Women, are pushing for the implementation of a new parliamentary law that would grant Bahraini citizenship to the children of Bahraini mothers and foreign fathers. Under the current law, only Bahraini men are allowed to pass citizenship onto their children.