Archive for April 3rd, 2012

03/04/2012

Jordanian Detainees, Victims of “lese-majeste” Law or Prisoners of Conscience?

Human Wrongs Watch 

By Abeer S. Abusaud* from Amman Amnesty International (AI) called on Jordanian authorities to immediately release six pro-reform Jordanians, who were arrested early this month for violating lese-majeste law, i.e, for “insulting” the King, four of whom have now been held for almost one month.

**Photo, source: ANHRI

Those detainees are considered prisoners of conscience, “detained solely for exercising their right to freedom of expression, and being punished for their opinions and peaceful activities, which demand reform and an end to corruption,” according to an AI report

French news agency AFP reported that the Jordanian security forces dispersed and arrested peaceful demonstrators, who participated in the 150 activists’ sit-in, in front of the Prime Minister’s Head office in Amman.

One protester, who didn’t want his name mentioned, said that security forces arrested the activists after they refused to stop chanting slogans against the Regime.

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03/04/2012

Thousands Continue to Flee Fighting in Mali

Human Wrongs Watch

Geneva, 3 April – The United Nations refugee agency today voiced deep concern about the deteriorating political and security situation in Mali, where thousands of people continue to flee their homes due to fighting between Government forces and Tuareg rebels in the country’s north.

A young Malian refugee collects unclean water from a local well in Ferrerio site, northern Burkina Faso. Photo: UNHCR/H.Caux

The north of the country is becoming more and more dangerous due to the proliferation of armed groups in the region,” a spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Melissa Fleming, told reporters.

Renewed fighting in northern Mali has uprooted more than 200,000 people since January, with the majority seeking safety in neighbouring countries and some 93,000 believed to be internally displaced. The country is also dealing with a coup by rebel Malian soldiers who took control of the country some 10 days ago and announced the dissolution of the Government led by President Amadou Toumani Toure.

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03/04/2012

Marshall Islands’ People Still Displaced After 60 Years of Nuclear Tests

Human Wrongs Watch

A “durable solution” has yet to be found to the displacement of communities affected by nuclear testing more than sixty years ago in the Marshall Islands, a UN independent expert warned.

*Photo: Thorpe, Clell photographer

“I have listened to the concerns and stories of affected communities from Bikini, Enewetak, Rongelap and Utrik. As a result of the nuclear testing, all of these communities have suffered dislocation, in one form or another, from their indigenous way of life,” said the Special Rapporteur on the human rights obligations related to environmentally sound management and disposal of hazardous substances and waste, Calin Georgescu.

From 1946 to 158, some 67 nuclear weapons tests were carried out in the Marshall Islands, which were then administered by the United States under trusteeship arrangements with the UN.

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