Archive for May 8th, 2016

08/05/2016

Mideast: 1 in 3 Pays Bribe to Access Basic Public Services

Human Wrongs Watch

ROME, 5 May 2016 (IPS) – Just an ordinary citizen living in a Middle East and North of Africa country and requiring a birth certificate for your new-born daughter? No problem—just take something with you, either some cash, a pack of cigarettes or buy a glass of tea with milk and a lot of sugar.
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Corruption Perceptions Index 2015 | Credit: Transparency International

Corruption Perceptions Index 2015 | Credit: Transparency International

 

Or a rich Middle-Eastern and want to strike a good business deal? No problem again –all you need is to carry with you an envelope full of banknotes or ask for the bank account of the concerned high government official, preferably abroad.

You may say that paying bribes is a worldwide practise that may have different names—commission, compensation, gratification, or maybe just a little present. You would be right. In fact, Transparency International (TI) estimates that more than 6 billion people live in countries with “a serious corruption problem.”

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08/05/2016

Whatever Is Britain to Do with Syria’s Children of War?

Human Wrongs Watch

By Catherine Shakdam*

7 May 2016 (RT)UK Prime Minister David Cameron is not having a good week. Just as the UK is discussing its future within the EU, another sensitive dossier landed on Downing Street’s lap: unaccompanied Syrian refugee children.
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Child refugees in Idomeni, Greece, March 2016. Photo: UNICEF/Tomislav Georgiev

As a “responsible Western nation,” one which values human life, and human dignity – or so we have been told – the UK is now debating whether or not it should allow Syrian children war refugees, aka Syrian war orphans, to step onto British soil as asylum seekers.

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08/05/2016

No Farmers, No Food — True But Not Enough

Human Wrongs Watch

LUSAKA, 6 May 2016 (IPS) – Agriculture is the primary sector of all economies. It is the sector responsible for granting food and nutrition security to all human beings. Consequently it is responsible for social stability and health. And it provides work opportunities to families, men, women and youth, and largely contributes to the country Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

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Photo: Courtesy of WFO

However, this would never be possible without the support of our partners and friends from the public and private sectors, from local and international arena, who believe in our daily work and in our central role for the socio-economic well being of this planet.

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08/05/2016

Islamophobia Is a Political Tool

Human Wrongs Watch

ROME, 6 May 2016 (IPS) – When the blasphemous anti Islam cartoons published in 2006 by a Danish newspaper left 205 people dead, the then Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Ekmeleddin Mehmet Ihsaoglu, went to see Javier Solana who was responsible for foreign affairs of the European Union. 

Television report on Islamophobia Conference at the UN, Geneva

The position of the EU was that there was no islamophobia at all, and this was an isolated incident. Since then, this has been more or less the position of the European institutions.

But now this is denial of the reality.

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08/05/2016

Peace State Iceland. Meaning What?

Human Wrongs Watch

By Johan Galtung*

‘Why not make a Reykjavik Mediation Center, politically and internationally independent, and on Iceland’s location between West and East, USA and Russia? Look at the map. For Reykjavík to invite USA and Russia, with Kiev and Donetsk. Maybe also Brussels, in the sense of NATO and EU. Issue: the conflict in and around Ukraine–meaning “at the border”, between two nations, Catholic-Ukrainian and Orthodox-Russian; with much hatred and violence’

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Johan Galtung

5 May 2016 – TRANSCEND Media Service

Dear Members of the Iceland Allthing Foreign Affairs Committee,

I have been asked to come to Iceland to answer that question; thanks indeed for inviting me to address you.

And to apologize, as a Norwegian, for our occupation of Iceland 1262-1386 instead of sending mediators to help settle your civil war.

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08/05/2016

‘El Niño Is Not a One-Off Event’

Human Wrongs Watch

The international community must boost efforts to build the capacity for disaster risk management and readiness to prevent El Niño weather extremes from causing humanitarian crises in affected countries and impeding their development, the President of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) on 6 May 2016.

Drought associated with the El Niño phenomenon has severely affected Arsi, Ethiopia. Photo: OCHA/Charlotte Cans

“We must remember that El Niño is not a one-off event but recurring global phenomena that we must address for future generations and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” said ECOSOC President Oh Joon at the opening of a special meeting on Impacts of the 2015/16 El Niño phenomenon: Reducing risks and capturing opportunities at UN Headquarters in New York.

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08/05/2016

Unaccompanied Refugee and Migrant children in Europe ‘Falling between the Cracks’

Human Wrongs Watch

New data reveal that a record 96,500 unaccompanied refugee and migrant children applied for asylum across Europe in 2015, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) on 6 May 2016 said, calling for urgent measures to protect these children from the serious risks of abuse, exploitation and trafficking.

Refugee children on the border of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Serbia. Photo: UNICEF/Tomislav Georgiev

“Unaccompanied children are falling between the cracks,” said Marie Pierre Poirier, UNICEF Special Coordinator for the Refugee and Migrant crisis in Europe, in a press release.

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