Disabled Students Targeted by Discipline
Source: Human Rights Watch
A report released by Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union stated that disabled students in public schools are statistically more likely to receive corporal punishment (including beatings) from authority figures as compared to non-disabled students. The report calls for an end to all physical punishment in public schools.
Press Bans Gay Marriage Announcement
Source: Miami Herald
A recently married gay couple from California was denied a marriage announcement in a Utah newspaper. The newspaper claimed it was not required to publish the announcement since gay marriage is not legal in Utah and publication could be deemed offensive. One survey reports that more than 1,000 newspapers across the country hold the same policy.
Second Mass Lead Poisoning in China
Source: N.Y. Times
Operation of an unlicensed manganese smelter in China’s Hunan province resulted in the poisoning of over 1,300 children with at least 170 children hospitalized. This is the second case of mass lead poisoning the country has faced in the past month. Lead poisoning represents just one of China’s many struggles with pollution, including its shortage of potable drinking water.
Aung San Suu Kyi Sentenced
Aung San Suu Kyi, who had been convicted for harboring American citizen John William Yettew in her home for three days, was sentenced to three years additional house arrest. The Myanmar Peace and Development Council subsequently commuted the sentence to eighteen months. Yettew was arrested while swimming through Inya Lake, three days after sneaking into Aung San’s house.
Small Victory for
Columbia has a high internal refugee population, yet its government has long refused to address the needs of its displaced citizens. Following recent U.N. mediation, the residents of a camp in Bogota prevailed against the Columbian government for humanitarian aid. The refugees had been displaced from their rural, resource-rich communities by military and paramilitary violence.
Abuses by Honduran
Human rights abuses are surfacing under the new Honduran administration headed by Roberto Micheletti, who succeeded former President Zelaya by a controversial military coup. Reports indicate media censorship and military prosecution of citizens: the government has suspended certain constitutional rights such as freedom of assembly, and citizens may be arrested and held without a warrant.
Report on Morocco’s Moudawana
In 2004, Morocco reformed its 1958 family law, the Moudawana, giving women equal rights to men with regard to children and marriage. However, the controversial regulation has not protected all women and children. Sex outside marriage is condemned, and unwed mothers have no rights and are shunned by society.
Refugee Camp Decongests Dadaab
Residents of northern Kenya donated approximately 4,942 acres of land to the Kenyan government to build a new refugee camp that aims to reduce overcrowding in Dadaab. The Dabaab camp, a grouping of three camps, represents the world’s largest refugee camp and houses approximately 300,000 people. In 2008, Kenya hosted nearly 400,000 refugees and asylum-seekers.
to Abolish Asylum Appeals
Greece, which receives a disproportionate amount of political
asylum applications compared to other E.U. countries, has decided to
discontinue applicants’ option to appeal asylum denials. The
decision was met with opposition, given that Greece received nearly 20,000
applications last year, and its current acceptance rate for asylum-seekers
is only 0.05 percent.
Investigations Rejected in Britain
Chief of the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) Sir John Scarlett strongly denied allegations that the agency has tortured suspected terrorists. The statement served as a response to multiple entities, including Amnesty International, which had called for an investigation. The allegations stem from detained terrorists who have accused British and U.S. individuals of human rights violations.
Criticizes Israel on Gaza
A new report by the U.N. High Commissioner for Human
Rights sharply criticized the Israeli invasion of Gaza between December
2008 and January 2009. The report cites significant evidence tending to
show that Israel grossly violated human rights and international
humanitarian law during its military operations.
Journalists Fear Media Censorship
Following the introduction of proposals to block certain websites and the initiation of new rules for censoring books, 200 Iraqi journalists, writers, and publishers staged a protest against government interference with their freedom to report. The journalists attest that colleagues who expose government corruption face threats and lawsuits.