Archive for December 1st, 2012

01/12/2012

Morsi’s Constitution Fails to End Military Trials of Civilians, Protect Freedom of Expression, Religion

New York, 30 November 2012 – The final draft of a constitution approved on November 29, 2012, by Egypt’s 100-member constituent assembly protects some rights but undermines others, says Human Rights Watch

**Mohamed Mursi. Photo credit: Marzouk113 | Wikimedia Commons.

**Mohamed Mursi. Photo credit: Marzouk113 | Wikimedia Commons.

“The constitution, approved in the midst of a political standoff between the president and the judiciary, provides for basic protections against arbitrary detention and torture and for some economic rights but fails to end military trials of civilians or to protect freedom of expression and religion”.

The constitution drafting process has been extremely contentious, and a number of assembly members resigned in protest over what they said was the failure of the dominant Islamist factions to compromise on key issues, including the place of religion in affairs of state, Human Rights Watch adds.

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01/12/2012

A Good Day for Shaking Prejudices

Human Wrongs Watch

By Silvia Swinden*, Pressenza, London — The interesting thing about a piece of good news that defies apparently established prejudice, discrimination and even a state of undeclared war is that it can “shock” us out of our acceptance that “things are the way they are”, people hate, fear, exclude and attempt to destroy others in all kinds of conflicts.

Wikimedia Commons: Sesame synchrotron

Wikimedia Commons: Sesame synchrotron

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This we call “normality” and it seems to validate a creeping belief that human nature is rather nasty.
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We must be grateful, very grateful, that from time to time good news, the human spirit, shows itself and brings the light at the end of the tunnel, in other words, there is no fixed human nature, we are intentional beings, and if others can leap over fear-inducing and stereotyping propaganda, so can we.

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01/12/2012

‘Liberated’ Afghans: 1 in 3 Food Insecure; 3 in 4 Forced from their Homes

Human Wrongs Watch

The United Nations called on international community to step up its humanitarian support for Afghanistan, while humanitarian agencies have begun distributing winter aid to thousands of Afghan families.  Winter temperatures can fall in Afghanistan to around -26°C.

Vulnerable Afghan families line up to receive winter supplies in Dahsabz, a suburb of Kabul. Photo: UNHCR/S.Murray-Jones

Vulnerable Afghan families line up to receive winter supplies in Dahsabz, a suburb of Kabul. Photo: UNHCR/S.Murray-Jones

“The figures speak for themselves … More than nine million people in Afghanistan – one third of the population – are food insecure; an average of 165 children under the age of five die every day; and an Afghan woman dies every two hours due to pregnancy-related causes,” said on 29 November the Director of Operations of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), John Ging, following a three-day visit to Afghanistan. 

In addition, some 450,000 people have been displaced by conflict and natural disasters, and more than 75 per cent of Afghans have been forced from their homes by conflict at least once in their lives, the UN humanitarian official noted.

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