This week could be the tipping point for the human rights and humanitarian crisis in the Central African Republic, which continues to spin out of control. With the situation worsening on a daily basis, including extrajudicial killings and rape, the U.N. Security Council will meet Thursday to vote on a resolution related to the deployment of peacekeeping forces to the country.
This vote presents a unique opportunity to start pulling the country back from the brink. However, public pressure is needed over the following days to demand a robust peacekeeping force with a strong human rights mandate to protect civilians, including many Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and refugees. We are thus calling on the decision makers in France, the UK and the U.S. to support our demands. You can participate in this campaigning push through our global Twitter action that accompanies our media, lobby and field work.
There are more than 300,000 migrant domestic workers in Hong Kong, with about half from Indonesia (Photo Credit: Amnesty International).
I had no time to myself – I worked long hours from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. with no rest day. My employers didn’t allow me to leave the house without someone accompanying me. When it was bed time, I had to wait for everyone to sleep because I slept in the family bathroom.
This 30-year-old woman from Tulungagung told Amnesty International her story in 2012.
In an extensive new report, filled with heartbreaking testimony about exploitative recruitment, physical and sexual violence, lack of food, excessive hours and restrictions on religious practices, Amnesty International examines the experiences of Indonesian domestic migrant workers trafficked to Hong Kong.
More than 2.5 million Syrians have fled their homes since the outbreak of the conflict in March 2011, with more than 600,000 crossing into neighboring countries (Photo Credit: Dimitar Dilkoff/AFP/Getty Images).
By Cilina Nasser, Syria Researcher at Amnesty International
“I’m not thinking about the future…I’m thinking about what we have left behind. I did not say a proper goodbye to my father and did not even bury him. I don’t know who did and where.”
Ahmed’s desperate reflection gives a small sense of the fear and upheaval that have gripped him and his young family for more than a year now. Syria’s ongoing armed conflict has forced them to move again and again in search of somewhere they can be safe and meet their basic needs.
In Egypt, many Syrian refugees face growing anti-Syrian sentiment among the populace and open hostility from Egyptian armed forces. Hundreds have been detained, and at least 66 have been deported back to Syria where they face arrest, violating international law.
Given the rapidly shifting geopolitical landscape, it is difficult to know for sure what President Obama will say in a few short hours. Indeed, it’s likely that White House advisers are themselves still editing the President’s script as you read this.
Congress is debating whether to authorize the President to use force in response to allegations that Syria used chemical weapons against opponents of the government.
Although Amnesty International has not taken – and is not likely to take – a position on the appropriateness of armed intervention, we believe the debate in Congress is inadequate, as it does not address many of the pressing issues of the Syrian crisis.
By Maha Abu Shama, Syria Campaigner at Amnesty International
“We have no women for marriage” is Khawlah’s usual response when Jordanian or other foreign men ask about marrying her 14-year-old daughter when they come looking for a bride.
Like other Syrian women refugees I met during a recent visit to Jordan, Khawlah complained how Jordanian men constantly bombard her with marriage proposals or requests to arrange marriages with refugee girls.
“I do not have work for you, but could marry you if you like,” is what ‘Aisha was told when she went looking for work. A 22-year-old student of English Literature, she complained that one of the reasons her job search in the Jordanian capital of Amman has been futile so far is that she often receives marriage proposals instead of paid work.
An ‘Israeli only’ by-pass road that links Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, sitting below an Israeli settlement outside of Jerusalem (Photo Credit: Edith Garwood).
ALL Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) are illegal.
Israel’s long-running policy of settling civilians in occupied territory amounts to a war crime.
This needs to be clearly said now, without ambiguity. The United States government, as sponsor of the current ‘peace talks’ between Israel and Palestinians, must uphold rule of law and human rights. Despite the fact that the U.S. has historically taken the same position as the international community that Israeli settlements within the OPT are illegal, they have chosen to prevaricate in recent years, using words like ‘unhelpful’ or ‘illegitimate’ to describe settlement building by Israel.