Archive for ‘Middle East’

05/05/2015

Why Are Ethiopian Israelis Protesting?

by Baher Kamal
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**Photo: Andreas Hackl/IRIN | Women of Ethiopian origin at a human rights demo in Tel Aviv, January 2012

A Tel Aviv rally turned violent on Sunday night, with police firing stun grenades and water cannons. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to meet with Ethiopian community leaders Monday, and another rally is expected outside his Jerusalem residence.

But who are the Ethiopian Israelis and why are they so angry?

Click here for IRIN’s interactive guide.

05/05/2015

Two Handbooks to Help States Tackle Terrorism

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

Terrorism continues to represent one of the greatest global challenges to international stability and security, and given the international nature of modern terrorism, no country is immune. To counter this threat, there are many important steps that States need to take, with establishing a strong legal system against terrorism key among them, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said on 4 May 2015.* 

UNODC

UNODC

In light of this, two new UNODC-developed handbooks – one on human rights and another on air and sea terrorism prevention – aim to assist States in strengthening their efforts against terrorist activities.

The guides are part of UNODC’s ongoing Counter-Terrorism Legal Training Curriculum, a knowledge-sharing platform designed to build capacity among national criminal justice officials to enhance their legal efforts against terrorism.

The Curriculum integrates training materials on related topics, such as money laundering and organized crime, addressing this scourge in a holistic manner.

This helps the target audience – including law enforcement officials such as police, prosecutors and judges; policymakers; and officials from departments such as Foreign Affairs, Justice and Interior – to better draft relevant laws and apply international treaties.

05/05/2015

UN Warns of ‘Tsunami’ of Electronic Waste ‘Rolling Out Over the World’

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

Geneva – The head of the United Nations body tasked with setting the global environmental agenda on 4 May 2015 stressed the need to limit the use of dangerous chemicals and to find a solution to the masses of electronic waste building up around the world, as a Conference of Parties to three major Conventions on the subject began in Geneva on 4 May 2015.

E-waste. Credit: ITU | Source: UN

Achim Steiner, Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), told journalists that the “tsunami of e-waste rolling out over the world” not only accounted for a large portion of the world’s non-recyclable “waste mountain” but also needed dealing with because many elements found in electronic equipment are potentially hazardous to people and the environment.*

05/05/2015

Every Four Minutes a Child Dies from a Traffic Accident – A World #SaveKidsLives Campaign

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

Each day some 500 children die from road traffic crashes, thousands more are injured and the situation is only getting worse, the United Nations on 4 May 2015 warned as it launched #SaveKidsLives, a global campaign to generate action to make streets safe for children.

Photo: WHO

Photo: WHO

According to the UN World Health Organization (WHO), every four minutes, a child dies from a traffic accident. For adolescents aged 15 to 17, road traffic injuries are the leading cause of death worldwide, with boys accounting for nearly twice as many road traffic deaths as girls.*

And one third of these deaths are children in cars but two thirds outside cars.

04/05/2015

Don’t Get Excited: Nuclear Disarmament Is Not on the Horizon

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

By Tony Robinson*

4 May 2015 (Pressenza)* – The 5-yearly cycle of reviewing the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty got underway last week at the United Nations in New York but not before civil society organizations had organized hundreds of events around the world and in the Big Apple, under the banner of the Peace and Planet Mobilisation, to raise awareness of what was about to happen and to put pressure on politicians and diplomats to make some headway in a process that is frankly speaking in a comatose state.

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Demonstrators at the Peace and Planet Mobilisation in New York on the 26th of April wave goodbye to nuclear weapons (Image by www.globalwave.org)  | Source: Pressenza

Demonstrators at the Peace and Planet Mobilisation in New York on the 26th of April wave goodbye to nuclear weapons (Image by http://www.globalwave.org) | Source: Pressenza

The problem is this: 5 countries have nuclear weapons and are in the NPT, 4 countries have nuclear weapons and are outside of it, 185 countries don’t have their own nuclear weapons and are in the NPT (although some Nato countries host US weapons in breach of articles 1 and 2 of the treaty).

04/05/2015

Tobacco Kills Up to Half of its Users – More Key Facts

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

One in every 10 cigarettes, and many other tobacco products, consumed worldwide are illegal, making the illicit trade of tobacco products a major global concern from many perspectives, including health, legal, economic, governance and corruption, World Health Organization (WHO) says ahead of World No Tobacco Day 2015 to be marked on 31 May.

**Author: Häggström, Mikael.

**Common adverse effects of tobacco smoking | Author: Häggström, Mikael. “Medical gallery of Mikael Häggström 2014″. Wikiversity Journal of Medicine 1 (2). DOI:10.15347/wjm/2014.008. ISSN 20018762. | Wikimedia Commons

‘The tobacco industry and criminal groups are among those who profit from the illegal tobacco trade, leaving the public to pay the health and security costs.’

04/05/2015

Yemen: Saudi-Led Airstrikes Used US-Supplied Cluster Munitions

by Baher Kamal
03/05/2015

World Water Week Journalist Grant

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

The Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) on 1 May 2015 opened the door to applications for the 2015 World Water Week Journalist Grant. The World Water Week will be held in Stockholm on 23-28 August 2015.

Planet Earth in dew, macro on leaf. Conceptual design. Elements of this image furnished by NASA. | Source: SIWI

Planet Earth in dew, macro on leaf. Conceptual design. Elements of this image furnished by NASA. | Source: SIWI

Are you passionate about water and development? Have you covered these topics in your work but want a chance to see more, learn more and interview major actors in the water community?*

Have you looked for an opportunity to report on a global water meeting, where world leaders, policy makers, and academics meet representatives from the private sector and civil society to discuss some of the world’s most urgent development issues? Apply for the World Water Week Journalist Grant!

SIWI offers three journalists from low or low-middle income nations the opportunity to visit Stockholm and World Water Week which takes place between 23-28 August 2015.

03/05/2015

Ban Nuclear Weapons – Now!

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

Statement of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) to the Treaty of Non Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, UN Headquarters, New York

How’s your government doing at the NPT RevCon? Follow along with this interactive map from ICAN Austria showing you the best (and worst!) of the NPT Review Conference

How’s your government doing at the NPT RevCon?
Follow along with this interactive map from ICAN Austria showing you the best (and worst!) of the NPT Review Conference

The humanitarian initiative began here five years ago, when the NPT Review Conference expressed its deep concern at the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons.

Since then, a fundamental shift has been under way. Concerns about the impact of nuclear weapons on people and the environment have become central to disarmament discussions.

02/05/2015

A Boy Called Bibi

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

By Uri Avnery*

2 May 2015

THERE ARE two different opinions about Binyamin Netanyahu. It is difficult to believe that they concern the same person.

Uri Avnery

Uri Avnery

One is that Netanyahu is a shallow politician, devoid of ideas and convictions, who is led solely by his obsession to remain in power.

This Netanyahu has a good voice and a talent for making shallow speeches on television, speeches devoid of any intellectual content – and that’s all.

This Netanyahu is highly “pressurable” (a Hebrew word invented almost solely for him), a man who will change his views according to political expediency, disclaiming in the evening what he has said in the morning. None of his words should be trusted. He will lie and cheat anytime to assure his survival.

The other Netanyahu is almost the exact opposite. A principled patriot, a serious thinker, a statesman who sees danger beyond the horizon. This Netanyahu is a gifted orator, able to move the US Congress and the UN plenum, admired by the great mass of Israelis.

So which of these descriptions is true?

Neither.

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