Archive for ‘Middle East’


Cybercrime ‘One of Fastest Growing Transnational Organized Crimes’

Human Wrongs Watch

Cybercrime is one of the fastest growing transnational organized crimes and already affects millions of victims worldwide. It takes the form of identity-related offences, infringement of copyright and intellectual property rights, and child pornography and abuse. It is one of the greatest threats to the two billion users of cyber space today who knowingly – or not – store personal information online.*

Photo: UNODC

Source: UNODC

In the run up to the 13th United Nations Crime Congress this April, we are highlighting different crimes, showing their impact on development and how vital it is to tackle them to achieve sustainable development.

The focus is now on cybercrime, outlining the scale of the problem and telling its transnational story.

Cybercrime has become increasingly easy to commit and harder for law enforcement to stop as technology advances.

Developing countries, in particular, lack the capacity to combat cyber-attacks and therefore record higher victimization rates. The need to protect citizens around the world from cybercrime is greater than ever.

Cybercrime is one of the many transnational crimes that will be discussed at the 13th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in Doha, Qatar.


Complicity in Illegal Logging Goes Far Beyond the Loggers

Human Wrongs Watch

By Greg Norman*

4 March 2015 – There’s an old adage that “rules are made to be broken”. Whatever your take on that logic, the idea of “rules are made to be enforced” is less open to debate.

Credit: Pierre Baelen/Greenpeace

Credit: Pierre Baelen/Greenpeace

A welcome addition when it was introduced on March 3rd 2013, the European Union Timber Regulation (EUTR) prohibits the placement of any illegal timber or timber products on the European market.

Yet two years on and Greenpeace continues to expose shipments of wood from companies involved with criminal and illegal activities in the Amazon and the Congo Basin finding their way to Europe.

In November last year we forced Belgian authorities to impound six containers of Amazon wood from Rainbow Trading, a company known to be involved in a criminal timber laundering racket in Brazil, as it arrived in the port of Antwerp.


WHO Insists: ‘Don’t Take So Much Sugar!’

Human Wrongs Watch

New guidelines released by the United Nations health agency on 4 March 2015 recommended that adults and children worldwide reduce their daily sugar intake to boost health and stave off non-communicable diseases.

Assorted candies. Photo: WHO/Christopher Black

The World Health Organization (WHO) says intake of ‘free’ sugars – monosaccharides (such as glucose, fructose) and disaccharides (such as sucrose or table sugar) – should make up less than 10 per cent of daily energy intake, while a reduction below five per cent of energy intake per day would provide additional benefits.*

“We have solid evidence that keeping intake of free sugars to less than 10 per cent of total energy intake reduces the risk of overweight, obesity and tooth decay,” said, Dr. Francesco Branca, Director of WHO’s Department of Nutrition for Health and Development.


‘Direct correlation between poverty, access to justice, and sexual violence’

Human Wrongs Watch

In eradicating sexual violence related to Colombia’s internal armed conflict, the main challenge now is translating resolve into tangible solutions in communities where the crime continues to occur, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General on Sexual Violence said at the conclusion of her trip to the Latin American country on 4 March 2015.

Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict Zainab Hawa Bangura briefs the press in Bogotá, Colombia. Photo: UNDP Colombia/Andrés Bernal

“There is a direct correlation between poverty, access to justice, and sexual violence,” Zainab Hawa Bangura said in a statement issued yesterday, emphasizing the need to protect poor and uneducated women and girls who are especially vulnerable.*


Libya Crisis ‘Festering’

Human Wrongs Watch

The overall situation in Libya is “deteriorating rapidly” amid a growing terrorist threat and continuing violence, the United Nations envoy to the country on 4 March 2015 warned the Security Council, as he urged national stakeholders to move firmly in defining the country’s future.

A wide view of the Security Council Chamber as Special Representative Bernardino Léon (shown on screen), briefs the Security Council via video conference on the situation in Libya. UN Photo/Mark Garten

“Libya can no longer afford to allow the political crisis and armed conflict that has gripped the country for much of the past year to fester,” Bernardino León, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative and head of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) said in a briefing to the Council.

“Unless Libya’s leaders act quickly and decisively, the risk to their country’s national unity and territorial integrity are real and imminent,” he added.


No Access to Essential Medicines for over 5 Billion People — 3 in 4 Wold Inhabitants

Human Wrongs Watch

Three quarters of the world population has no access to proper pain relief treatment, according to a report by the United Nations body charged with overseeing Governments’ compliance with international drug control treaties, which was released in London on 3 March 2015.

A patient in a hospital in Cambodia is given some pain killers. Photo: World Bank/Masaru Goto | Source: UN

Around 5.5 billion people still have limited or no access to medicines containing narcotic drugs such as codeine or morphine the Vienna-based International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) says in its Annual Report for 2014, which went on to point out that around 92 per cent of all morphine used worldwide is consumed by only 17 per cent of the world population, primarily living in the United States, Canada, Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand.


One Billion Teenagers, Young Adults at Risk of Hearing Loss Due to Unsafe Use of Personal Audio Devices, Damaging Sound Levels

 Human Wrongs Watch

3 March 2015 – More than 1 billion teenagers and young adults are at risk of hearing loss due to the unsafe use of personal audio devices such as smartphones and exposure to damaging levels of sound, prompting the World Health Organization (WHO) to devote International Ear Care Day tomorrow to “Making Listening Safe.”

Credit: WHO

“As they go about their daily lives doing what they enjoy, more and more young people are placing themselves at risk of hearing loss,” Dr. Etienne Krug, WHO Director for the Department for Management of Non-communicable Diseases, Disability, Violence and Injury Prevention said in a press release.*

“They should be aware that once you lose your hearing, it won’t come back,” Dr. Krug continued, adding: “Taking simple preventive actions will allow people to continue to enjoy themselves without putting their hearing at risk.”


The Problem with Iraq’s Offensive against the Islamic State

Human Wrongs Watch

BAGHDAD, 3 March 2015 (IRIN)*  – As the Iraqi army and affiliated militias sweep into northern Iraq to try to re-take the city of Tikrit from so-called Islamic State (IS), the local civilians are fearful they may be punished for the crimes of the Islamist militants. 

Ghanim Al-Ajeeli, a Sunni tribal sheikh from the Albu Ajeel village north of Tikrit which has up to 20,000 residents, said he feared being held responsible for the actions of IS.

“We are very concerned by this operation,” he told IRIN. “The [Shia] militias will eliminate the entire tribe of Albu Ajeel. They won’t leave a single house.”


Push Back the Doomsday Clock!

Human Wrongs Watch

By James Albertini*, 3 March 2015 – TRANSCEND Media Service

James "Jim" Albertini

James “Jim” Albertini

We Are All Down Winders!

March 1st is known as “Nuclear-Free & Independent Pacific Day.” It commemorates the tragic 15 megaton U.S. nuclear bomb test, code named Bravo, at Bikini atoll in the Marshall Islands of Micronesia, on March 1, 1954.

Many people died in the Marshall Islands from radiation contamination and fallout downwind of the Bravo blast and the 66 additional U.S. nuclear weapon tests there.

The Bravo test was 1000 times more powerful than the U.S. bomb that destroyed the city of Hiroshima, Japan. (You are cordially invited to attend: The Bravo Test Remembrance Worship Event, Monday, March 2, 2015, 6:30 – 8:30 PM at the Church of the Holy Cross 440 W. Lanikaula St., Hilo, Hawai`i – across from UHH new glass building.)

Today, we are all Down Winders. The mining and milling of uranium for making fuel for nuclear power plants and nuclear bombs, thousands of nuclear bombs tested worldwide, numerous nuclear accidents –Fukushima, Chernobyl, etc. and the widespread use of depleted uranium weapons in training and in war, have now made earth’s entire population DOWN WINDERS.


Wildlife Crime One of Largest Global Organized Criminal Activities, alongside Drug, Arms, and Human Trafficking

Human Wrongs Watch

Once an emerging threat, wildlife and forest crime today has transformed into one of the largest transnational organized criminal activities, alongside drug trafficking, arms, and trafficking in human beings, the United Nations warned on World Wildlife Day 2015, on 3 March 2015*

Beyond immediate environmental impacts, the illegal trade in natural resources is depriving developing economies of billions of dollars in lost revenues. - See more at:

Beyond immediate environmental impacts, the illegal trade in natural resources is depriving developing economies of billions of dollars in lost revenues. | Source: UNEP

Beyond immediate environmental impacts, the illegal trade in natural resources is depriving developing economies of billions of dollars in lost revenues.

The number of elephants killed in Africa annually is in the range of 20,000 to 25,000 per year out of a population of 420,000 to 650,000.

According to recent data from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, as many as 100,000 were killed in a three-year period from 2010 through 2012.


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