25/02/2021

Digital Labour Increased Five-Fold in Last Decade, with Challenges Relating to Working Conditions, the Regularity of Work and Income, the Lack of Access to Social Protection…

Human Wrongs Watch

Rapid growth of digital economy calls for coherent policy response. The growth of digital labour platforms is presenting opportunities and challenges for workers and businesses and a need for international policy dialogue.

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GENEVA, 24 February 2021 (ILO)* – Digital labour platforms have increased five-fold worldwide in the last decade according to the ILO’s latest World Employment and Social Outlook 2021 report.

This growth has underlined the need for international policy dialogue and regulatory cooperation in order to provide decent work opportunities and foster the growth of sustainable businesses more consistently.
25/02/2021

Chinese New Year or Spring Festival – Two Celebrations in One

Human Wrongs Watch

By Igor Micunovic*

24 February 2021 (Wall Street International)*Chinese New Year is the biggest holiday of utmost importance for Chinese people around the world. In fact, it represents two celebrations in one.

Traditionally Chinese believe that everyone’s birthday is celebrated on New Year’s Day
Traditionally Chinese believe that everyone’s birthday is celebrated on New Year’s Day |  Image from Wall Street International.

Chinese New Year (农历新年 nónglì xīn nián) is the official name for Chinese New Year in the Republic of China (Taiwan), while Spring Festival (春节Chūn Jié) or the Lunar New Year, is the festival that celebrates the beginning of a Chinese New Year in P.R. China.

Customs

Traditionally Chinese believe that everyone’s birthday is celebrated on New Year’s Day. This period of time for all Chinese is the time of the year for families to get together and reunite again.

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25/02/2021

Mexico to Ban Glyphosate, GM Corn Presidential Decree Comes Despite Intense Pressure from Industry, U.S. Authorities

Human Wrongs Watch

CAMBRIDGE MA, Feb 24 2021 (IPS)* – Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador quietly rocked the agribusiness world with his New Year’s Eve decree to phase out use of the herbicide glyphosate and the cultivation of genetically modified corn. His administration sent an even stronger aftershock two weeks later, clarifying that the government would also phase out GM corn imports in three years and the ban would include not just corn for human consumption but yellow corn destined primarily for livestock. Under NAFTA, the United States has seen a 400% increase in corn exports to Mexico, the vast majority genetically modified yellow dent corn.

Tractor caravan to Mexico City farmer protest demands “Mexico Free of Transgenics”. Credit: Enrique Perez S./ANEC
25/02/2021

Amid Conflict, Displacement, Pandemic, Syrian Girls See a Future in… Robots

 
Bana, 12, enjoys learning about robotics at a women’s and girls’ safe space in northwest Syria. Image courtesy of Ihsan Relief and Development

“Like all girls in Syria, I live a difficult childhood,” she told facilitators at the women’s and girls’ safe space where she receives support and services. She is a dedicated student, but since the outbreak of COVID-19, her school has often been closed.

“When I can attend school, I behave politely and work hard,” she described. 

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25/02/2021

Human Rights Experts ‘Appalled’ by Deportation of Migrants to Myanmar, in Defiance of Court Order

Human Wrongs Watch

(UN News)* — Independent UN human rights experts castigated Malaysia on Wednesday [24 February 2021] over its decision to deport more than1,000 detained migrants back to crisis-ridden Myanmar – despite a court order to suspend their return, pending a judicial review. 

Unsplash/Alex Hudson | A food market in Kelantan, Malaysia.
 
Malaysian immigration authorities returned 1,086 migrants, including unaccompanied minors and toddlers as young as three, the UN experts said in a statement on Wednesday. 

In defiance of the Kuala Lumpur High Court’s order, the Malaysian authorities “breached the principle of non-refoulement, a rule of jus cogens, which absolutely prohibits the collective deportation of migrants without an objective risk assessment being conducted in each individual case”, they said.

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24/02/2021

World Risks ‘Collapse of Everything’ without Strong Climate Action, Attenborough Warns Security Council

(UN News)*More collective action is needed to address the risks climate change poses to global peace and security, the UN Secretary-General told a high-level Security Council debate on Tuesday [23 February 2021], as renowned natural historian David Attenborough warned countries that the planet faces total ‘collapse’.
CIFOR/Axel Fassio | Young girls carry water from a source near Yangambi, Democratic Republic of the Congo.
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Climate shocks such as record high temperatures and a “new normal” of wildfires, floods and droughts, are not only damaging the natural environment, said UN chief António Guterres, but also threatening political, economic and social stability.
“The science is clear: we need to limit the global temperature increase to 1.5 degrees by the end of the century,” the Secretary-General said.
24/02/2021

Battered by Climate Shocks and Bruised by Economic Crisis Millions More in Central America Face Hunger

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WFP/Oscar Duarte, women cooking free meals for the children of the community named Guililandia, who were affected by the Hurricane. Part of the rice she has served to the children was WFP rice.
WFP/Oscar Duarte, women cooking free meals for the children of the community named Guililandia, who were affected by the Hurricane. Part of the rice she has served to the children was WFP rice.

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24/02/2021

Myanmar: Stop Harassment and Intimidation of Workers, the International Labour Organization Urges Military

Human Wrongs Watch

24 February 2021 (UN News)*The United Nations International Labour Organization (ILO) has called on the military in Myanmar to end harassment and intimidation of workers, and ensure that they can exercise their rights to freedom of expression, in a climate free of violence and fear.

Unsplash/Alexander Schimmeck | The street leading to the Sule Pagoda in downtown Yangon, Myanmar. (file photo)
 
In a statement on Tuesday [23 February 2021], the agency said it received allegations that police and military are conducting door to door searches for trade unionists at their dormitories and hostels in the Hlaingtharyar industrial township, in the country’s largest city, Yangon.

It is alleged that the acts of harassment and intimidation “largely targeted” young female workers working in the private sector industries of Yangon, who are living far away from their families in the rural areas, ILO said. 

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24/02/2021

‘US Review of Guantanamo Bay Detention Centre Must Ensure Closure and Remedies for Those Tortured and Detained’

Human Wrongs Watch

GENEVA, (OHCHR)* – UN experts* on 23 February 2021said the US Administration’s review of how to close the Guantanamo Bay detention centre should also address ongoing violations of human rights being committed against the 40 remaining detainees, including torture and other ill- treatment.

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Unsplash/Hédi Benyounes | Barbed wire fencing surrounds a detention centre.

“We welcome the goal of closing the detention facility, consistent with our previous calls to end impunity for the human rights and humanitarian law violations committed during the ‘war on terror’. As the 20thanniversary of 9/11 looms, we urge a transparent, comprehensive, and accountability-focused review of the operation and legacy of the prison and the military commissions,” the experts said.

US President Joe Biden announced this month that his Administration would study how it could shut down Guantanamo, as was first promised by former president Barack Obama.

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23/02/2021

Natural Enemies: How Mango Farmers Are Tackling an Invasive Fruit Fly Pest

Human Wrongs Watch

As the climate warms, a destructive pest is spreading its wings and damaging the livelihoods of fruit growers in southern Africa. The invasive fruit fly, Bactrocera dorsalis, is preventing farmers like Susan Zinoro, a mango farmer from Mutoko, Zimbabwe, from literally and figuratively enjoying the fruits of their labour.

Mango-growers-Susan-and-Batsirai-Zinoro-from-Mutoko-District-Zimbabwe-who-are-using-Integrated-Pest-Management-methods-to-control-fruit-fly-credit-Busani-Bafana-IPS-1024x683

Mango farmers Susan and Batsirai Zinoro from Mutoko District, Zimbabwe are using Integrated Pest Management methods to control a fruit fly pest. Credit: Busani Bafana/IPS

BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe, Feb 23 2021 (IPS)* – Every harvest season, Susan Zinoro, a mango farmer from Mutoko, Zimbabwe, buries half the mangoes she’s grown that season. They have already started rotting either on the tree or have fallen to the ground before harvest. It’s a difficult task for Zinoro because she knows she is throwing away food and income meant for her family.

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23/02/2021

‘As Temperatures Rise and Climate Change Impacts Intensify, Nations Must “Urgently” Step Up Action to Adapt to the New Climate Reality or Face Serious Costs, Damages and Losses’

Human Wrongs Watch

Implementation of nature-based solutions has been growing. But there is an urgent need to gather more evidence on the outcomes of adaption projects worldwide. As temperatures rise and climate change impacts intensify, nations must urgently step up action to adapt to the new climate reality or face serious costs, damages and losses, the 2020 edition of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Adaptation Gap Report finds.*  

cover_test_0Image from UNEP Adaptation Gap Report 2020 / 14 Jan 2021

(UNEP)* — Implementation of nature-based solutions has been growing worldwide for the past two decades. Since 2006, multilateral funds serving the Paris Agreement have backed around 400 adaptation projects in developing countries, half of which started after 2015. The majority focus on agriculture and water, with drought, rainfall variability, flooding and coastal impacts.

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23/02/2021

Despite Being the Least Responsible for Climate Change, ‘People in Low-Income Countries Are Four times More Likely to Be Displaced by Extreme Weather Compared to People in Rich Countries’

IRIN/Jacob Zocherman | The most vulnerable people in the world, like these displaced persons in South Sudan, are more likely to suffer from the effects of climate change.
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The UN is warning that much more needs to be done to anticipate, and plan for, the extreme weather events that put millions in need of urgent assistance.

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23/02/2021

2021: Critical Year to ‘Reset Our Relationship with Nature’

Human Wrongs Watch

CIFOR/Tri Saputro | A farmer harvests rice in Bantaeng, Indonesia.
Painting a picture of the turmoil wreaked by COVID-19, whereby millions are being pushed into poverty, inequalities are growing among people and countries, and “a triple environmental emergency” of climate disruption, biodiversity decline and a pollution epidemic that is “cutting short some nine million lives a year”, UN Secretary-General António  Guterres upheld in his video message that now is “a critical year to reset our relationship with nature.”
22/02/2021

Cry of the Himalaya: 4 Decades of Disasters, 4 Decades of Warning

Human Wrongs Watch

By Prof. Vandana Shiva | Jivad – TRANSCEND Media Service*

I am a child of the Ganga Himalaya , nourished materially and spiritually by Dev Bhoomi, our sacred land. The mountains , forests and Ma Ganga have shaped my imagination, my knowledge ,my science , my life , my activism.

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22/02/2021

World’s Largest Refugee-Hosting Country -Turkey – Establishes a Dedicated UN Network on Migration

Human Wrongs Watch

Ankara, 20 February 2021 (IOM)* Turkey, host to almost four million refugees and migrants, has established a dedicated United Nations Network on Migration (UNNM). The initiative flows from the 2018 Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM), the first cooperative framework addressing international migration.

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As GCM convenor, IOM hosted a gathering in the Turkish capital Ankara on 18 February 2021, which brought together United Nations representatives to formally bring the country’s UNNM into being.

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22/02/2021

What Is Fossil Capital? And How Does It Fuel Social Injustice

What is fossil capital?

The world we live in has been built around an economic system that prioritises never-ending growth over the welfare of people and the planet. This system plunders our planet’s resources while oppressing our most vulnerable. It perpetuates structural inequalities and deepens the climate crisis and fossil fuels are at its core and is known as “Fossil Capital”

Fighting Inequality Concert in Manila. © Jilson Tiu / Greenpeace

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21/02/2021

Young People Call for Urgent Climate Action

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Photo: IISD/19 Feb 2021

The gathering, which is being held virtually, as part of the UN Environment Assembly, is the planet’s largest youth-led environmental event. It has zeroed in on climate change, which participants described as a dire threat to the planet.

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21/02/2021

Extreme Weather Hits USA, Europe

US cold wave.png

More than 100 million people over 1.6 million km² were under winter storm warnings, according to the US National Weather Service. Some 73% of the Continental USA was covered in snow as of midnight February 16, the greatest extent on record in the database, which dates back to 2003.

21/02/2021

In the Textile Industry, Old Is Increasingly Becoming New

Human Wrongs Watch

20 February 2021 (UNEP)* — A clothing company in the Philippines that uses scrap material to make shoes. A technology startup in Ireland that allows strangers to swap little-used clothes. And a fashion house in Brazil that produces zero waste and repurposes old clothes into new ones.

Women_working_in_a_cloth_factory_which_export_to_the_European_Union_in_Huaibei,_Anhui_province,_East_China_Photo_by_Shutterstock

Photo: Frame China / Shutterstock.com / 19 Feb 2021

These are three of a growing number of companies that are bucking an environmentally destructive trend towards fast fashion.

The textile industry, say observers, has long been primed for a circular makeover.

Amid rapacious demand for cheap, on-trend clothing, it has become a major driver of climate change: some sources say that the textile sector accounts for about 8 per cent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions.

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21/02/2021

Yemen Heads towards Worst Famine World Has Seen in Decades

Human Wrongs Watch

UNITED NATIONS, Feb 19 2021 (IPS)* – Yemen is heading towards the worst famine the world has seen in decades, the United Nations Security Council was warned in a briefing yesterday [18 February 2021].

COVID awareness raising: Amanat Alsimah

Volunteers teach people living in settlements about COVID-19. This photo was taken in Sana’a, Yemen. At a Security Council briefing yesterday UN Under Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator said people in Yemen are more worried about hunger than the COVID-19 pandemic. Credit: Dhia Al-Adimi/UNICEF

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21/02/2021

‘Over 60 Per Cent of All Workers Lack Any Kind of Employment Contract’ – World Day of Social Justice

Human Wrongs Watch

A Call for Social Justice in the Digital Economy

row of computer stations

Computer stations in the renovated Delegates’ Lounge at United Nations Headquarters. PHOTO:UN Photo/Mark Garten

20 February 2021 (United Nations)* —  The digital economy is transforming the world of work. Over the past decade, expansion in broadband connectivity, cloud computing, and data have led to the proliferation of digital platforms, which have penetrated several sectors of the economy and societies.

Since early 2020, the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic have led to remote working arrangements and allowed for the continuation of many business activities, further reinforcing the growth and impact of the digital economy.

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20/02/2021

‘The Lives and Futures of More than Three Million Displaced Children Are at Risk in DR Congo, While the World Is Looking the Other Way’ – UNICEF

KINSHASA/DAKAR/GENEVA/NEW YORK (UNICEF)* The lives and futures of more than 3 million displaced children are at risk in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) while the world is looking the other way, a report released by the UN children’s agency, UNICEF, on 19 February 2021 said.
Woman sitting in a shelter holding a baby
UNICEF DRC 2020

In the east of the country, a succession of brutal attacks by fighters using machetes and heavy weapons have forced whole communities to flee with only the barest of possessions. Entire families — including children – have been hacked to death. Health centres and schools have been ransacked, and whole villages set ablaze.

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20/02/2021

Extreme Violence Engulfs Three-Quarters of South Sudan, 10 Years after Independence ‘Children All Have Guns’

Human Wrongs Watch

(UN News)*Extreme violence and attacks involving thousands of fighters at a time have engulfed more than three-quarters of South Sudan, UN human Rights Council-appointed investigators said on Friday [19 February 2021], warning that the bloodshed faced by civilians are “the worst recorded” since the country’s civil war began in December 2013.

OCHA/Cecilia Attefors | An armed individual in the town of Pibor, in Jonglei state, South Sudan. Pibor has seen violent clashes and confrontations that have resulted in displacement as well as destruction of livelihood and property. (File)
19/02/2021

‘Globally 40% of the Population Does Not Have Access to an Education in a Language They Speak or Understand’ – International Mother Language Day

19 February 2021 (UNESCO)* — The idea to celebrate International Mother Language Day was the initiative of Bangladesh. It was approved at the 1999 UNESCO General Conference and has been observed throughout the world since 2000.

imld-cover-image

UNESCO believes in the importance of cultural and linguistic diversity for sustainable societies. It is within its mandate for peace that it works to preserve the differences in cultures and languages that foster tolerance and respect for others.

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19/02/2021

‘When Languages Fade, So Does the World’s Rich Tapestry of Cultural Diversity’ – International Mother Language Day

Woman sitting down on the floor pointing at a poster with letters is surrounded by young children.

Toddlers in Bangladesh are introduced to the alphabet. | PHOTO:© UNICEF/BANA2014-00573/Mawa

19 February 2021 (United Nations)* — International Mother Language Day recognizes that languages and multilingualism can advance inclusion, and the Sustainable Development Goals’ focus on leaving no one behind.

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19/02/2021

Without Nature’s Help, “We Will Not Thrive or Even Survive”

(UN News)*Without nature’s help, “we will not thrive or even survive”, the UN chief said on Thursday [18 February 2021], launching a major report on the environment.
© UNESCO | A horse rider heads towards mountains in Kyrgyzstan.
“For too long, we have been waging a senseless and suicidal war on nature. The result is three interlinked environmental crises”, Secretary-General António Guterres told a virtual press briefing on the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) report, Making Peace with Nature.

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19/02/2021

Making Peace with Nature: Where Actions Equal Science

By Inger Andersen, Executive Director, UNEP*

This new report from the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), Making Peace with Nature, provides the most-compelling scientific case yet for why we must tackle the three planetary crises of climate change, nature and biodiversity loss, and pollution and waste as one linked challenge. The report gathers the sum of knowledge from major scientific assessments to deliver one clear, unified message: we are destroying the planet, placing our own health and prosperity at grave risk.

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Photo by Max Kukurudziak/ Unsplash / 18 Feb 2021

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19/02/2021

‘The World Can Tackle the Climate, Biodiversity and Pollution Crises Together to Secure a Sustainable Future, Prevent Future Pandemics’

Human Wrongs Watch

New UNEP synthesis provides blueprint to urgently solve planetary emergencies and secure humanity’s future

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Pixabay / 18 Feb 2021

Nairobi, 18 February 2021 (UNEP)*The world can transform its relationship with nature and tackle the climate, biodiversity and pollution crises together to secure a sustainable future and prevent future pandemics, according to a new report by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) that offers a comprehensive blueprint for addressing our triple planetary emergency.

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17/02/2021

Walmart among US Retail Giants Selling Beef Linked to Amazon Destruction

Human Wrongs Watch

By Andrew Wasley and Alexandra Heal | The Bureau of Investigative Journalism – TRANSCEND Media Service*

Campaigners Call for Major Grocers to Cut Ties with Controversial Brazilian Meat Firm JBS

Walmart, Costco and Kroger are selling Brazilian beef products imported by JBS – the world’s largest meat company – which we previously revealed has been embroiled in a string of deforestation allegations.  

Three of America’s biggest grocery chains are selling Brazilian beef produced by a controversial meat company which has been linked to the destruction of the Amazon rainforest, an investigation by the Bureau has revealed. Continue reading

17/02/2021

“Why Was I Ever Born”– Righting the Wrong

Human Wrongs Watch

Dr. Alon Ben-Meir is a professor of international relations at the Center for Global Affairs at NYU. He teaches courses on international negotiation and Middle Eastern studies.

US-announcement-revoking_

The US announcement revoking the previous administration’s terrorist designation of Yemen’s Houthi movement, formally known as Ansar Allah, will provide “profound relief” to millions in the country, who depend on international assistance and imports for their survival, the UN Spokesperson said on February 7, 2021. Credit: WFP/Reem Nada

NEW YORK, Feb 17 2021 (IPS)* – The bombing continues unabated. The explosions are heard in the distance. A family with seven children is cowering in fear in a corner of their shack, not daring to step out, dreading instant death from shrapnel or a sniper’s bullet. Continue reading

17/02/2021

Q&A: Lesbos Lead Contamination

17/02/2021

Myanmar Crisis: ‘Terrified’ UN Rights Human Rights Expert Sounds Alarm ahead of Expected Protests

Human Wrongs Watch

17 February 2021 (UN News)*The UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar has warned of the potential for a sharp uptick in violence on Wednesday, as protests continue against the 1 February military takeover of the government. 

Unsplash/Kyle Petzer | A pagoda at dawn in downtown Yangon, the commercial hub of Myanmar.

Special Rapporteur Tom Andrews said in a statement that he is “terrified” that violence could break out, as additional soldiers have been deployed in towns and cities, including the commercial hub Yangon, where demonstrations are planned, following reports that a “secretive trial” of State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint began on Tuesday [16 February 2021].

“In the past, such troop movements preceded killings, disappearances, and detentions on a mass scale,” he said. 

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17/02/2021

‘We Had to Run for Our lives’: The Pregnant Women Fleeing Tigray

16 February 2021 (UN News)*Pregnant women are amongst the tens of thousands of people in need of assistance in the Tigray region of Ethiopia, where fighting between the Government and regional forces of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) have been ongoing since November 2020. Hiwot* is one of them.
 
© WFP/Leni Kinzli | Tens of thousands of Ethiopians have been displaced by the ongoing conflict in the Tigray region.
 
“When you think about your future, you never plan to be uprooted from the comfort of your home and find fragile safety in a tent,” said 24-year-old Hiwot, from Ethiopia’s embattled Tigray Region.

Yet this is exactly where she found herself in early December, while she was seven months pregnant. Fighting intensified around her neighbourhood, forcing her and her husband to flee.

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17/02/2021

‘Atrocities Committed by Armed Groups in Eastern DR Congo Have Become Part of a Systematic Pattern to Disrupt Lives, Instill Fear, Create Havoc’

Human Wrongs Watch

16 February 2021 (UNHCR)*UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is alarmed at ongoing atrocities carried out by armed groups in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), which have become part of a systematic pattern to disrupt civilians’ lives, instill fear and create havoc.    Español   |  Français

16/02/2021

Anti-Asian Violence in US Demands Response

Human Wrongs Watch

By Seashia Vang and Erika Nguyen  Human Rights Watch*

Federal and Local Governments Should Invest in Community Safety

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Decorative lanterns hang above Mott street in Manhattan’s Chinatown district before the start of the Chinese Lunar New Year, New York, NY, February 9, 2021.  © 2021 Photo by Anthony Behar/Sipa via AP Images

Cities across the United States are seeing numerous unprovoked attacks against Asian-Americans, particularly older people, according to a new study by a coalition documenting and addressing anti-Asian hate and discrimination.

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16/02/2021

The Gamers’ Uprising against Wall Street Has Deep Populist Roots

Human Wrongs Watch

Ellen Brown | Web of Debt – TRANSCEND Media Service*

Wall Street may own the country, as Kansas populist leader Mary Elizabeth Lease once declared, but a new generation of “retail” stock market traders is fighting back.
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Much ado about GameStop. [Mike Mozart / CC BY 2.0]

A short squeeze frenzy driven by a new generation of gamers captured financial headlines in recent weeks, centered on a struggling strip mall video game store called GameStop.

The Internet and a year off in this shut down to study up have given a younger generation of investors the tools to compete in the market. Gerald Celente calls it the “Youth Revolution.”

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16/02/2021

IP, Vaccine Imperialism Cause Death and Suffering, Delay Recovery

Human Wrongs Watch

SYDNEY and KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 16 2021 (IPS)* – Vaccine developers’ refusal to share publicly funded vaccine research findings is stalling broader, affordable vaccinations which would more rapidly contain COVID-19 contagion. The pandemic had infected at least 109 million people worldwide, causing over 2.4 million deaths as of mid-February.

Anis Chowdhury

Avoidable delays in preventive vaccination are imposing terrible burdens on the world economy and human welfare, with economic disruption demanding more relief and recovery measures. They have cost US$28 trillion in lost output globally, with developed countries contracting by 7% in 2020.

Avoidable vaccination delays
National capacities to cope with the pandemic have been largely determined by means and power.

Thus, access to COVID-19 tests, treatments, personal protective equipment and other pandemic supplies has been severely lacking in most African and other poor countries.

At current vaccination rates, it would take “not one or two years, but six years” to reach 75% global coverage, currently considered the minimum to achieve ‘herd immunity’ against COVID-19. Continue reading

16/02/2021

COVID-19, Just One Symptom of the Damages Human Activity Has Caused; Extraction and Consumption of Nature’s Resources Have Also Resulted in Crises of Climate Change, Biodiversity Loss..

UN Environment Assembly sets stage for green recovery

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REUTERS/Pilar Olivares / 15 Feb 2021

15 February 2021 (UNEP)* — In addition to the tragic loss of life, COVID-19 has rolled back decades of progress on poverty, gender and health. It has exposed social and economic inequalities and the inextricable link between human and planetary health.

The pandemic is just one symptom of the damage that human activity has caused. The extraction and consumption of nature’s resources have also resulted in crises of climate change, nature and biodiversity loss, and growing volumes of pollution and waste.

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15/02/2021

Why Victoria Nuland Is Dangerous and Should Not Be Confirmed

Human Wrongs Watch

By Rick Sterling – TRANSCEND Media Service*

Victoria Nuland exemplifies the neocons who have led US foreign policy from one disaster to another for the past 30 years while evading accountability. It is a bad sign that President Joe Biden has nominated Victoria Nuland for the third highest position at the State Department, Under Secretary for Political Affairs.

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Rick Sterling

As a top-level appointee, Victoria Nuland must be confirmed by the US Senate.  There is a campaign to Stop her confirmation.

The following review of her work shows why Victoria Nuland is incompetent, highly dangerous and should not be confirmed.

Afghanistan and Iraq

From 2000 to 2003, Nuland was US permanent representative to NATO as the Bush administration attacked then invaded Afghanistan. The Afghan government offered to work with the US remove Al Qaeda, but this was rejected.

After Al Qaeda was defeated, the US could have left Afghanistan but instead stayed, established semi-permanent bases, split the country, and is still fighting there two decades later. Continue reading

15/02/2021

Biden and Africa. What Now?

Human Wrongs Watch

By Hilde F. Johnson, Norway’s Former Minister of International Development*

This is certainly not the time to leave the region to its own devices

The Horn of Africa is the playground for the rising aspirations of several geopolitical actors
The Horn of Africa is the playground for the rising aspirations of several geopolitical actors | Image from Wall Street International.

15 February 2021 (Wall Street International)*The Trump administration left a vacuum in many parts of Africa. This had consequences. When the US retreats, others come in and occupy the space. China has gone full speed ahead with the Belt and Road initiative, massively investing in many African countries, nurturing new friendships. The Gulf States have used the opportunity to approach new allies on the African continent, in a battle for hegemony in the Middle East and beyond.

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15/02/2021

Remember the Norilsk Oil Spill? Well, the Polluters Will Pay

What happened?

On May 29, 2020 over 20 thousand tons of diesel leaked into the water and soil from a storage tank owned by Norilsk Nickel near Norilsk, turning the Ambarnaya River red. According to official data, the oil spill in Norilsk is the largest ever in the polar Arctic. Norilsk Nickel were taken to a local court for the damage by the Rosprirodnadzor (the Federal Service for the Supervision of Natural Resources), a regulator which is part of the Ministry of Natural Resources in Russia.

© Anonymous / Greenpeace
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15/02/2021

Indigenous Peoples Improvise a COVID-19 Hospital in Manaus

This Brazilian facility operates at a church and with donations of oxygen cylinders and other medical supplies.

Health volunteers at the Support Unit, Parque das Tribos, Manaus, Brazil, Jan. 22, 2021.Health volunteers at the Support Unit, Parque das Tribos, Manaus, Brazil, Jan. 22, 2021. | Photo: Twitter/ @GreenpeaceBR

13 February 2021 (teleSUR)* — In response to the inefficiency of the Brazilian authorities, the residents of the Manaus neighborhood “Tribes Park” (Parque das Tribos) set up their “Support Unit” (SU), a rudimentary field hospital to treat COVID-19 patients.

Despite the high number of COVID-19 cases, they are not being treated directly by the Special Secretariat for Indigenous Health (SESAI) because they reside in an urban area.

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15/02/2021

Renewable Energies in Colombia: All that Glitters Is Not Gold

Human Wrongs Watch

The struggle against climate change can be neutralized by the circumstances and conditions under which the clean energy transition is carried out. The behaviour of wind-energy companies in La Guajira, the territory of the Wayuu indigenous people, serves as an illustrative example.

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15/02/2021

‘Unacceptable’ Violence, Intimidation and Harassment in Myanmar – UN Chief 

Human Wrongs Watch

14 February 2021 (UN News)*An increased use of force and the reported deployment of armoured vehicles to major cities throughout Myanmar have sparked the deep concern of UN Secretary-General António Guterres. 

Unsplash/Alexander Schimmeck | Dusk approaches in Yangon, Myanmar.
In a statement issued on Sunday [14 February 2021] by his spokesman, Stéphane Dujarric, the UN chief called on the military and police of Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, to ensure that the right of peaceful assembly is “fully respected” and demonstrators are “not subjected to reprisals”. 

“Reports of continued violence, intimidation and harassment by security personnel are unacceptable”, he spelled out. 

The unfolding situation follows a military takeover on 1 February.

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13/02/2021

Counterbalancing Use of Electronics

Human Wrongs Watch

By Katie Singer*

A letter to Greta Thunberg: connecting with the Earth

Hanging laundry saves energy and connects neighbors
Hanging laundry saves energy and connects neighbors | Image from Wall Street International.
13 February 2021 (Wall Street International)*

Dear Greta,

After I’d begun learning about telecommunications’ public health and environmental impacts; after more children than I can count became screen addicts; after studies showed that using a mobile phone increases risk of cancer (but didn’t get media attention) and far too many people got brain or tongue or thyroid cancer; after countless legislative sessions prohibited policymakers from considering the health or environmental effects of exposure to electromagnetic radiation when they voted to permit or deny new transmitting cellular antennas; after learning that 5G mobile networks’ deployment will increase telecommunications’ energy use and greenhouse gas emissions exponentially and increase the public’s and wildlife’s exposure to electromagnetic radiation, I admitted to myself that I am powerless over telecom corporations and that my life has become unmanageable.

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13/02/2021

Tigray: Troubling Picture Emerging of Severe and Ongoing Harm to Children, Many of Them Separated and Unaccompanied among Internally Displaced Persons

Human Wrongs Watch

ADDIS ABABA/NAIROBI/GENEVA/NEW YORK, 12 February 2021 (UNICEF)*  – As more supplies and emergency personnel reach crisis-affected people in Tigray, an incomplete but troubling picture is emerging of severe and ongoing harm to children.
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7-month-old Natan Hailay eats a high energy biscuit to boost his nutrition levels.Natan's family are displaced from the Western Zone of Tigray Setit Humara Woreda and currently sheltered at Meserete high school in Mekelle.
UNICEF/UN0412581/Leul Kinfu7-month-old Natan Hailay eats a high energy biscuit to boost his nutrition levels.Natan’s family are displaced from the Western Zone of Tigray Setit Humara Woreda and currently sheltered at Meserete high school in Mekelle.

Between 4 February and 7 February, a UNICEF team accompanied by the Regional Health Bureau Head travelled from Mekelle to the town of Shire in Central Tigray, with six trucks filled with 122 tons of emergency supplies. This was the first UN mission to Shire since the conflict erupted on 4 November 2020.

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