Showing posts with label Human Rights. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Human Rights. Show all posts

Monday, January 23, 2023

Commenting on Sweden's permission to burn the Qur'an, Turkish FM, Cavusoglu, says, Hate crimes are not freedom of expression

    Monday, January 23, 2023   No comments

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu will denounce the Swedish authorities' permission for the leader of the far-right Danish "hard line" party, Rasmus Paludan, to burn a copy of the Holy Qur'an in the capital, Stockholm, and stressed that such crimes do not fall within the framework of freedom of expression.

Çavuşoğlu said that they "do not allow the burning of books of other religions, but when it comes to the Holy Qur'an and hostility to Islam, they immediately invoke freedom of thought and expression."


The Turkish minister stressed that hate and racism crimes do not fall within the framework of freedom of thought and expression, whether according to Swedish laws or decisions of the Council of Europe or the European Court of Human Rights.

He pointed out that Turkey was quick to take the necessary steps as soon as it learned that the Swedish authorities had allowed the extremist in Al-Wadan to burn a copy of the Noble Qur’an in front of the Ankara embassy building in Stockholm.


Davutoglu indicated that the Turkish Foreign Ministry summoned the Swedish ambassador to Ankara to the ministry's headquarters and issued the necessary warnings to him, explaining that the Turkish ambassador to Stockholm, Yonat Janzel, spoke directly with the Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Bilstrom in this regard.


He expressed his hope that the Swedish authorities would take the necessary measures at the last minute and prevent this racist and hate crime from happening, which would cause outrage in the entire world.

After the event, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stressed that Sweden should no longer wait for Ankara to take any step within the framework of accepting its accession to NATO, in light of the burning of the Holy Quran in Stockholm.


Erdogan added, "You want to support terrorist organizations, and you support those who are hostile to Islam, and you want us to support your joining NATO... This will not happen at all."


And the Turkish president added, "We say clearly... Sweden is no longer waiting for any support from us for its accession to NATO... We say clearly that no one has the right to insult our sacred values."


Last Saturday, the Swedish-Danish extremist Ramsos Paludan carried out what he promised to burn a copy of the Holy Qur’an in front of the Turkish embassy in Stockholm, amid great police protection and a large media presence.


Thursday, December 08, 2022

A Saudi-Chinese agreement to hold a summit between the two leaderships every two years and to sign agreements worth billions of dollars.. The Saudi Crown Prince affirms the Kingdom’s commitment to the “One China” policy

    Thursday, December 08, 2022   No comments

 

A Saudi diplomatic source in Riyadh told the German news agency that “the Saudi and Chinese sides agreed to hold a summit between the two leaderships every two years,” without disclosing further details.

The agreement comes during Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to the Kingdom, which is the second, and it came at the invitation of Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said today, Thursday, that Riyadh is firmly committed to the "one-China" principle and supports Beijing in protecting its sovereignty, security and territorial integrity.

  In a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping, bin Salman said: “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is firmly committed to the principle of ‘One China’, supports China in defending its sovereignty, security and territorial integrity, supports the measures and efforts that China is making to de-radicalize, and strongly opposes external interference in China's internal affairs under the pretext of protecting human rights,” according to China Central Television, according to Sputnik.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said that Chinese President Xi Jinping will attend the summit of the Chinese-Gulf Cooperation Council, in addition to the first-ever Chinese-Arab meeting, and indicated that the summit will be a “milestone” in the development of Chinese-Arab relations.

The Chinese president affirmed his country's readiness to strengthen relations and cooperation with Riyadh in various fields, and to support peace and stability around the world.

Today, the Chinese president held talks with Saudi leaders on the second day of his visit to Riyadh, Thursday, before witnessing the signing of billions of dollars worth of agreements between the two economic powers aspiring to enhance their rapprochement, despite Washington's warnings of the escalation of Beijing's influence.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman shook hands with Chinese President Xi Jinping when he got out of his car upon his arrival at Al Yamama Palace in Riyadh, the official residence of the king and the seat of the royal court, according to footage broadcast by state media.

Later, the Chinese president met with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz, and in the presence of the crown prince, they signed the "comprehensive strategic partnership agreement between the Kingdom and China," according to the Saudi Press Agency. They also agreed to hold a meeting of the leaders of the two countries every two years.

"China-Saudi cooperation has broad future prospects, and the Chinese side regards the Saudi side as an important force in a multipolar world, and attaches great importance to developing a comprehensive strategic partnership with Saudi Arabia," Xi said, according to Chinese state media.

The Chinese president confirmed that Beijing is ready to expand oil trade with Riyadh and will "list Saudi Arabia as an outbound tourism destination" for Chinese citizens.

Xi was awarded an honorary doctorate in management from King Saud University "in recognition of his achievements and great efforts in management and leadership, and in gratitude for the thriving relationship and continuous cooperation between the two friendly countries," according to the agency.

And Saudi government media reported that the visit witnesses the signing of agreements worth about $29.3 billion in several fields, at a time when China wants to strengthen its economy affected by the Corona virus, while the Saudis, historical allies of the United States, seek to diversify their economic and political alliances.


- important partner -

During the visit, the Chinese president will participate in two Gulf-Chinese and Arab-Chinese summits attended by leaders of the countries of the region who have already begun to flock to the Saudi capital, including Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi and Lebanese caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati.

China, the largest consumer of Saudi oil, is strengthening its trade and political ties with a region that has long relied on the United States for military protection but has expressed fears of a diminishing American presence.

Hours after his arrival on Wednesday, Saudi state media announced 34 investment agreements in sectors including green hydrogen, information technology, transportation and construction.

The official Saudi Press Agency did not include additional details, but said that total trade between the two countries amounted to 304 billion Saudi riyals ($80 billion) in 2021 and 103 billion Saudi riyals ($27 billion) in the third quarter of 2022.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman believes that China is an important partner in the “Vision 2030” economic reform, as he seeks to involve Chinese companies in huge and ambitious projects aimed at diversifying the economy away from fossil fuels.

These projects include the future city of NEOM, which has an investment value of $500 billion and will rely heavily on facial recognition technology and surveillance.

Saudi Investment Minister Khaled Al-Falih said that Xi's visit will contribute to raising the pace of economic and investment cooperation between the two countries, as the visit provides "returns" to Chinese companies and investors, according to the Saudi Press Agency.

- Interviews with Arab leaders -

Diplomats based in Riyadh reported that the Chinese president may hold bilateral talks Thursday with other Arab leaders who arrived in Saudi Arabia ahead of Friday's summits.

Tunisian President Kais Saied will also arrive in Riyadh on Thursday. The Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, will also attend. Iraqi Prime Minister Mohamed Shiaa Al-Sudani and Moroccan Prime Minister Aziz Akhannouch confirmed their presence.

China's foreign ministry said Xi's program represented "the largest large-scale diplomatic activity between China and the Arab world since the founding of the People's Republic of China."

This was not lost on the eyes of the White House, which warned of "the influence that China is trying to develop around the world."

"We are aware of the influence that China is trying to expand around the world," John Kirby, a spokesman for the National Security Council at the White House, told reporters. The Middle East is certainly among these regions where they want to deepen their level of influence,” he said, adding, “We believe that many of the things they seek, and the way they seek them, are not compatible with maintaining the international order governed by specific rules.”

"We're not asking countries to choose between the United States and China, but as the president has said many times, we believe the United States is certainly in a position to lead in this strategic competition," Kirby continued.

Washington has long been a close partner of Riyadh, but the relationship has recently soured over disagreements over energy policy, US security guarantees to countries in the region, and human rights.

Xi is making his third trip abroad since the COVID-19 pandemic prompted China to close its borders and embark on a series of lockdowns, hurting its giant economy.


Monday, November 28, 2022

Wealth and Power: Sexual slavery pursues Ukrainian women and contempt for Africans

    Monday, November 28, 2022   No comments

"The tendency to enslavement represented, in ancient times, a basis for prestige (the prestige of the master and the prestige of the tribe), and a kind of financial investment, which could be exploited in a period of crisis." A phrase mentioned in a book, published last year, entitled “History of Slaves in the Arabian Gulf." --a researcher and professor of history at the American University in Kuwait, Hisham Al-Awadi. 

Despite the difference in history, and the Gulf countries taking a trend keeping pace with modernity and development, the tendency towards establishing slavery still exists, albeit through disguised methods. Perhaps what the UAE is witnessing today is the best evidence of this, with the spread of “modern slavery” practices towards migrant workers, who are looking for a living outside the borders of their countries.


Human trafficking and illegal practices

Behind the towering building, which touches the clouds in the Emirates, and behind the amazing lights that catch the eye, there is a world of another kind; A world in which many of what can be considered “modern slavery” affect migrant workers, especially Africans, who are subjected to multiple types of exploitation and racial discrimination, from being forced to pay illegal recruitment fees, along with withholding their salaries, to confiscating their passports. Perhaps what is hidden is greater, in light of the documenting by multiple organizations of cases of commercial sexual exploitation and human trafficking.


The Emirati black record on human trafficking was also documented by Western media in the aftermath of the Russian military operation in Ukraine, highlighting the process of bringing girls from war and conflict zones to work in prostitution. This was revealed by the British newspaper "Daily Mail", last August, regarding the smuggling of Ukrainian women and children to the Emirates, with the aim of "trafficking in human beings and exploiting them in domestic sexual slavery in Abu Dhabi," according to the newspaper's expression.


However, in front of this scene, the voice of African workers remains the dominant one, as the most vulnerable group and subject to systematic human rights violations, and the most prominent victims in the long list of modern slavery practices in this country.


Mass deportation on racial grounds

Only because their skin is black, African migrant workers in the UAE suffer. For these people, most of whom hail from Nigeria, Cameroon and Uganda, their search for a living has turned into a bad memory that may not leave them as long as they are alive.


"They told us we were dirty. They stripped us of our clothes, confiscated our belongings, insulted us and made racist slurs against black Africans." Great suffering faced the Ugandan teacher, Kenneth Rubangakin, in the Emirates, who tried to shorten it, through limited words, after he was arrested for more than a month, and forcibly deported from there without any positive reasons. He is one of about 800 other people who were subjected to the same insults last year, and hundreds of them and others still continue to this day, according to what human rights organizations have documented, despite the UAE government's repeated denials.


This suffering was previously highlighted by Amnesty International in a report, in which it confirmed that "the UAE authorities brutally treated hundreds of people, based on the color of their skin, ill-treated them in places of detention, and stripped them of their personal property and dignity, before deporting them en masse." At the time, the organization quoted one of the victims, Kabirat Olukand, who is from Nigeria, and worked as an assistant in an international school before being deported, that she asked the police officers: “Why am I here? I am not a criminal, and I have residency documents.” It gives, and the UAE takes.” She reported being harassed by the officers there.


Dave Kenny, a researcher at Amnesty International, confirmed that the organization documented a case of grave violations against African workers in the UAE in the summer of 2021, through mass deportation that took place on racial grounds, in an organized operation that targeted this segment because of their African nationality and skin color, and the number of its victims reached hundreds. Kenny pointed out that "the 18 people interviewed by the organization were legally residing in the UAE, and this was confirmed by reviewing official documents and data for 17 out of 18 cases," stressing that "all they were subjected to, from arrest and deportation, was without a legal right,” in light of “the inability of any of them to contact a lawyer, or enter the courtroom,” and as a result of their suffering from very difficult detention conditions for months before they were later deported, saying that the “Cameroonians” were deported to a country that passes in a civil war.


Hence, the researcher at the international organization calls on the UAE government to "compensate the victims as a result of what they suffered at the hands of the authorities, especially in light of their deportation without handing over their personal belongings, and the loss of many of them all their savings, electronic devices, and personal clothes, in addition to licenses, certificates, and medical records." Even personal identities, the government has taken everything from them, and it must return everything that it took from them.”


An incubating environment for companies that violate the rights of migrant workers


Although migrant workers to the UAE make up about 90% of the workforce, the majority of them suffer hardships during their journey into the labor market, as a result of the poor conditions they are exposed to, at a time when this country is a safe haven for companies that violate the rights of migrant workers, forcing them to They have to live under harsh conditions, as documented by the International Trade Union Confederation, "ITUC", which has previously launched an international campaign against "modern slavery" to which this large segment of workers is exposed there.


In this context, the director of the Gulf Center for Human Rights, Khaled Ibrahim, sees that the Emirati authorities are primarily responsible for all the violations that African workers are exposed to, and that they are concerned with ensuring the application of human rights standards in the fields of work, while the responsibility also rests with employers, who must be held accountable for those violations that occur against workers They have, and who should be offered protection at all times.


As for the role of international human rights organizations regarding these violations, Ibrahim says, "We have no armies or weapons, we do not have political parties, and we do not promote hidden agendas. Rather, we work completely independently in defending human rights," stressing that these organizations "have The word, and its supernatural power is represented by its sincerity. As a result, we are documenting these violations and working with the international community to stop them."


Saturday, November 19, 2022

"Just Hypocrisy": FIFA President Gianni Infantino On World Cup Critics

    Saturday, November 19, 2022   No comments

 FIFA president Gianni Infantino hit back at criticism of Qatar's human rights record on Saturday, blasting the "hypocrisy" of Western critics on the eve of the World Cup kick-off.


“What we Europeans have been doing for the last 3000 years, we should be apologizing for the next 3000 years before starting to give moral lessons.”

Infantino also addressed questions around the last-minute decision to ban alcohol from being sold at the eight stadiums which will host the tournament’s 64 matches. In a FIFA statement issued on Friday, the governing body said alcohol would be sold at fan zones and licensed venues.

The Muslim country is considered to be very conservative and tightly regulates alcohol sales and usage.

“Let me first assure you that every decision that is taken in this World Cup is a joint decision between Qatar and FIFA,” he said. “Every decision is discussed, debated and taken jointly.”


“There will be […] over 200 places where you can buy alcohol in Qatar and over 10 fan zones, where over 100,000 people can simultaneously drink alcohol.


“I think personally, if for three hours a day you cannot drink a beer, you will survive.”

“Especially because actually the same rules apply in France or in Spain or in Portugal or in Scotland, where no beer is allowed in stadiums now,” he added.


“It seems to become a big thing because it’s a Muslim country, or I don’t know why.”



Saturday, November 12, 2022

UN Report Blasts "Outrageous" US Sanctions Harming Syrian Civilians

    Saturday, November 12, 2022   No comments

A UN special rapporteur called for the removal of Western sanctions on Syria as they are having a devastating impact on the civilian population and preventing the country from rebuilding after 11 years of war.

Alena Douhan, made the comments after a 12-day visit to Syria. There she found that sanctions are harming civilians in many ways, including by causing a shortage of medicine and medical equipment.

“In the current dramatic and still-deteriorating humanitarian situation, as 12MM Syrians grapple with food insecurity…the “catastrophic effects of unilateral sanctions” are impacting people “across all walks of life in the country.” She said that 90% of Syria’s civilian population is living in poverty and have limited access to food, water, electricity, shelter, fuel, healthcare, and transportation.” Douhan told the UN.

“I urge the immediate lifting of all unilateral sanctions that severely harm human rights and prevent any efforts for early recovery, rebuilding and reconstruction,” Douhan said, adding that 12 million Syrians grapple with food insecurity.

Douhan said that 90% of Syria’s population currently lives in poverty, with limited access to food, water, electricity, shelter, cooking and heating and fuel.



Sunday, October 09, 2022

Media Review: The West is Paying the Price for Instrumentalizing Human Rights and Convenience-Driven Policies

    Sunday, October 09, 2022   No comments

As revealed again by the West’s rhetorical support of protesters in Iran, the practice of using human rights claims to go after governments the West does not like and ignoring human rights abuses when they are done by Western-supported regimes or when done in Western countries, such a practice is very short-sighted and tends to backfire.

Case in point: for more than seventy years, the US and other

European governments provided unwavering support to the Saudi regime even when such regime banned women from driving, unleashed its morality police to beat shop owners who did not close their shops during Friday prayers, abused migrant workers, oppressed its Shia community, beheaded dissidents, launched illegal wars against its neighbors, and sent a team of 15 operatives to lure a dissident into its embassy building and dismember his body. Then, after one single decision by the Saudi regime to cut oil export just one month before midterm elections in the US and when Russia's oil is sanctioned, and the media and politicians are now gearing up to tell the world how bad the Saudi regime is. Soon, you will see more commentaries and political talking points unmasking Saudi Arabia’s “bad” human rights record. Given the context, few informed people will pay attention, and even fewer will trust the human rights claims behind which the West stands to justify its sanctions or interventions in countries run by leaders who do not follow and obey Western preferences. Here, the preeminent NYT and its top influencer is using a line from Trump’s book, They Are Laughing At Us, to promote the idea of punishing the Saudi regime.

Monday, August 08, 2022

A Saudi prince claims Western bias, comparing the wars in Ukraine and Gaza

    Monday, August 08, 2022   No comments

A Saudi prince responded to the sympathy of the Ukrainian ambassador in Israel: The hypocrisy of the West and its double standards have exceeded all limits.. People in Ukraine in the eyes of the West are not like people in Palestine



The Saudi prince, Abd al-Rahman bin Musaed, said, "The hypocrisy of the West and its double standards have exceeded all limits... People in Ukraine in the eyes of the West are not like people in Palestine."


The Ukrainian ambassador to Israel, Yevgeny Kornichuk, expressed his “great” sympathy with the Israelis, which a prominent Saudi prince considered “hypocrisy.”


In a tweet published by the Ukrainian embassy in Israel, Cornicheuk said: “As a Ukrainian whose country is under a long-term brutal attack by its closest neighbor, I feel great sympathy for the Israeli people.”


Cornichuk added, “Terrorism and attacks against civilians have become a daily routine for Israelis and Ukrainians. We have to put an end to this. We pray for peace and hope for an end to the escalation soon,” before the shooting stops between Israel and the “Islamic Jihad.”

It is a good sign that even the Saudi ruling family is moved by the plight of vulnerable peoples and outraged by the disproportionate use of force. But it is not clear if the Saudi ruling family would have the same sympathy and concern for civilians living in Yemen, a country that has been under Saudi armed attack, sanctions, and isolation killing thousands of children and pushing poverty in that country to record levels.


Tuesday, July 12, 2022

SAS unit repeatedly killed Afghan detainees, BBC finds

    Tuesday, July 12, 2022   No comments

Today, Tuesday, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) conducted an investigation that published details of it saying that agents of the Special Air Service in Afghanistan (SAS) repeatedly killed detainees and "unarmed" men in suspicious circumstances.

The military reports obtained indicate that one unit may have unlawfully killed 54 people in one round that lasted six months.

The BBC also reported that General Sir Mark Carleton Smith, the former head of the UK's special forces, was aware of the alleged "unlawful" killings, but did not hand the evidence to the Royal Military Police - even after the Royal Military Police launched an investigation. in the killings carried out by members of the Special Forces.

 The BBC also found evidence that the former head of the Special Forces failed to pass evidence to a murder investigation. While the reports received said that more than 12 "kill or capture" raids were carried out in Helmand, Afghanistan between 2010 and 2011.

Personnel who served in Special Forces units stated that they witnessed the SAS killing unarmed people during the night raids.

The reports revealed a "pattern of strikingly similar reports of Afghan men being shot dead because they pulled AK-47s or grenades from behind curtains or other furniture after their arrest."

The report also said that AK-47s were deliberately placed at the scenes of accidents in order to justify the killing of unarmed people. He added, "Many people who served in the Special Forces were competing with each other over which of them had the most killings."

It is noteworthy that such incidents occurred in earlier times, according to the report, and the data indicate that they raise suspicion among officials that what happened in Afghanistan has turned into what he called “a suspicious and suspicious killing pattern”, especially since previous incidents that are very similar have been documented. It was revealed by the British Authority in its report.

The information in the reports shows that officers at the highest levels of the Special Forces were aware of the implementation of "potential unlawful killings", but were unable to report this to the military police, despite the fact that the law requires them to report such crimes.

It is noteworthy that the Ministry of Defense did not comment on what was published by the BBC, while a spokesman for the Ministry of Defense said that the British forces "served with courage and professionalism" in Afghanistan to the highest standards.



27 years later, an apology for the Srebrenica Genocide

    Tuesday, July 12, 2022   No comments

The Netherlands on Monday offered its "deepest apologies" for the role played by Dutch peacekeepers in the Srebrenica genocide.

Roughly 8,000 Bosnian Muslims were brutally murdered by attacking Bosnian Serb forces 27 years ago.

For the first time since the 1995 massacre, Dutch Defense Minister Kajsa Ollongren apologized to survivors for the Dutch peacekeepers' failure to prevent the killings.

"The international community failed to offer adequate protection to the people of Srebrenica. The Dutch government shares responsibility for the situation in which that failure occurred. And for this, we offer our deepest apologies," Ollongren said during a ceremony in Potocari.


Sourse of the News Story: https://www.dw.com/en/srebrenica-massacre-netherlands-apologizes-after-27-years/a-62434446


Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Sherine Abu Aqleh, Al-Jazeera correspondent in occupied Palestine, was shot dead by the Israeli occupation forces in Jenin camp

    Wednesday, May 11, 2022   No comments

 This morning, Wednesday, the Palestinian Ministry of Health announced the death of Al-Jazeera correspondent Shireen Abu Aqleh, as a result of being hit in the head by live bullets, while covering the occupation's storming of Jenin refugee camp in the West Bank.

And the occupation forces wounded Palestinian journalist Ali Al-Samudi with live bullets in the back.

The wounded journalist Al-Samudi recounted the details of the crime of the occupation in Jenin camp, saying: "There were no resistance fighters near us during the occupation's targeting of us in Jenin camp."

 

Al-Jazeera media network commented in a statement on the martyrdom of its reporter Abu Aqila, and said: "In a tragic, premeditated murder that violates international laws and norms, the Israeli occupation forces, in cold blood, assassinated our correspondent."

 

The statement added: "We condemn this heinous crime, through which it is intended to prevent the media from fulfilling its message, and we hold the Israeli government and the occupation forces responsible for the killing of the late colleague Shireen."

 

An Israeli force stormed the Jenin refugee camp and surrounded the house of the martyr Abdullah Al-Husari, while the resistance fighters confronted the invading force.

 

Eyewitnesses said that the Israeli occupation forces fired live bullets at demonstrators and press crews.

 

The media office of the Palestinian government in Gaza condemned the "crime of the occupation in killing fellow journalist, Sherine Abu Aqleh," and considered it a "complete crime, and the conclusion of a long series of attacks that affected the former martyr, from detention and preventing her from covering to being injured."

 

The office stressed that "the crime confirms the criminal behavior of the occupier, and his disregard for all the covenants that guarantee the journalist unhindered media coverage, and the occupation soldiers would not have reached this level of criminality without their conviction that they are evading accountability and punishment."

 

Large crowds of Palestinians participated in the farewell procession of the martyr Abu Aqila towards the Church of the Latin Monastery in Jenin, before her funeral in Jerusalem. Jenin attended a massive rally condemning the crime of the occupation.

  




Thursday, April 28, 2022

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres walks in war zone characterizes the war in Ukraine as “absurd”, could see his own “grandchildren running in terror.”

    Thursday, April 28, 2022   No comments

ISR Comment:

To Mr. Guterres: There is another absurd war that is also absurd and was allowed to go on for seven years: The war in Yemen. But perhaps the children of Yemen do not look like your grandchildren, so that is why you cannot relate, you cannot imagine them to be your children; so you don’t visit Yemen’s destroyed cities and watch the children dying of hunger and lack of basis medicine because of the suffocating embargo by a regime that threatened to cut off aid to UN organizations if its crimes against children was reported by any UN agency. Perhaps, if the UN and many Western states spoke forcefully against the many wars in Muslim communities initiated or enabled by the West, the world will be more united and successful in preventing this war. Consistency is an element of justice. The bigotry and discrimination against communities of the Global South will haunt those complicit in all human rights crimes and will destroy the reputation of the UN organization for its failure to support for the poor and vulnerable.


The News:

Guterres - who is on his first visit to Ukraine since the start of the Russian war on the country on February 24 - said in front of destroyed buildings accompanied by soldiers and local officials, "I imagine my family in one of these houses, I see my grandchildren running in terror, the war is absurd in the 21st century, any war that is not acceptable in the 21st century.”

While touring damaged towns outside Kyiv, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres urged Russia to cooperate with war crimes probes. Meanwhile, German lawmakers approved sending heavy weapons to Ukraine. DW has the latest.

Biden proposes using seized Russian oligarch assets to compensate Ukraine

The White House proposed using assets confiscated from Russian oligarchs to compensate Ukraine for damage caused by Russia's invasion of the country.

This would enable "transfer of the proceeds of forfeited kleptocratic property to Ukraine to remediate harms of Russian aggression," the White House said in a statement.

To date, European Union allies have frozen more than $30 billion (€ 28,6 billion) in Russian assets, including almost $7 billion in luxury goods belonging to oligarchs, including yachts, art, real estate and helicopters, the White House said.

The United States has "sanctioned and blocked vessels and aircraft worth over $1 billion (€950 million), as well as frozen hundreds of millions of dollars of assets belonging to Russian elites in US accounts."

...

source: https://www.dw.com/en/un-chief-guterres-decries-absurdity-of-war-in-visit-to-ukraine-live-updates/a-61615670

Thursday, April 14, 2022

Tehran in response to an American report on human rights: Washington is the biggest violator of human rights

    Thursday, April 14, 2022   No comments

On Thursday, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh responded to what was stated in the annual report of the US State Department on Iran.

In its annual report on the human rights situation in the world, the US State Department accused Iran of "committing widespread violations of human rights."

The Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman said: "It is clear that the US administration, which is addicted to lies, cannot be expected to clarify the existing facts and facts. Therefore, the biased, political and intrusive nature of this report is clear and consistent for all and for the Iranian people."

Khatibzadeh pointed out that the US administration, "with its history full of wars, coups, assaults, assassinations, kidnappings, economic blockades, and killing of innocents around the world, has been a major violator of human rights, and therefore it is not worthy in any way to talk about lofty concepts such as human rights."

He added that the United States "shed crocodile tears for the Iranian people, while its crimes against Iran, including downing a passenger plane and inciting its tails at home to assassinate the people and officials over the past decades, will remain forever alive in the minds of the Iranian people."

The spokesman described the US administration's allegations as "duplicity" and "aimed at achieving its illegitimate political goals," saying that "the US president's direct issuance of orders to assassinate Major General Qassem Soleimani, in a cowardly manner, well revealed the terrorist nature of the United States."

Khatibzadeh pointed out that the US administration "turned a blind eye to the blatant and systematic violations of human rights within its country and at its allies," noting that "everyone has repeatedly witnessed how racial discrimination against minorities and Black Americans occurs systematically and widely in America, which in turn led to protests by Black people and by the people of that country."

He stressed that "the excessive violence of the police and the killing of Black people in front of the eyes of citizens exposes the approach of the US administration against human rights."

  




Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Meet the nuke the U.S. keeps in Europe, just waiting to not be used

    Tuesday, March 29, 2022   No comments

Media review: 

Near steep vineyards of riesling grapes, in an underground vault at an air force base in western Germany, sits an American nuclear bomb. More than one of them, actually. Each bomb is about the length of two refrigerators laid down end to end and as heavy as the average adult male musk ox. The bombs are slender and pointy and a little more than a foot wide.

Experts estimate that there are about 100 such bombs stored among five NATO countries, ready to be loaded on jets and dropped by the United States and its allies - old-school style, parachute and all - toward an enemy target. One version of this bomb can carry the explosive equivalent of 11 Hiroshimas.

source: 

... countinue reading the original article



Thursday, March 24, 2022

Adding to at least 3 other indepedent reports with the same conclusion, aUN Human Rights Report Says Israel Guilty of ‘Apartheid’

    Thursday, March 24, 2022   No comments


The UN’s human rights body has accused Israel of the “crime of apartheid,” saying it has established a “regime of systematic racial oppression and discrimination” against Palestinians. The conclusion follows a long line of similar findings from from Israeli, Palestinian and international organizations.

A report issued Monday by United Nations investigator Michael Lynk states that Israel’s system “ensures the supremacy of one group over, and to the detriment of, the other,” namely in the occupied West Bank, arguing that it meets the legal definition for apartheid.

“The political system of entrenched rule in the occupied Palestinian territory which endows one racial-national-ethnic group with substantial rights, benefits and privileges while intentionally subjecting another group to live behind walls, checkpoints and under a permanent military rule… satisfies the prevailing evidentiary standard for the existence of apartheid,” he wrote.

Lynk’s report mirrors previous findings from a number of humanitarian orgs, among them Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and B’Tselem, which have each similarly accused Israel of apartheid and the persecution of Palestinians. 


Read the Reports...









Monday, March 14, 2022

Saudi Arabia executes 81 people in one day; No reaction from Western Democracies

    Monday, March 14, 2022   No comments

 Saudi Arabia beheaded at least 81 people in one day, including seven Yemenis and one Syrian, state media reported on Saturday. 

Activists said, 41 of them were Shia Muslims from the eastern Qatif region.

The mass carrying out of capital punishment appears to be the largest execution in the kingdom in its modern history. The total number of those put to death surpassed that of the January 1980 mass execution of militants convicted of seizing the Grand Mosque in Mecca, which saw 63 people beheaded.

Human rights group Reprieve condemned the executions and said it feared for prisoners of conscience, including individuals arrested as children, on Saudi death row. 

"The world should know by now that when Mohammed bin Salman promises reform, bloodshed is bound to follow,"  said Reprieve deputy director Soraya Bauwens in a statement. 

"Just last week the crown prince told journalists he plans to modernise Saudi Arabia’s criminal justice system, only to order the largest mass execution in the country’s history.

Since taking power, Crown Prince Mohammed under his father has increasingly liberalized life in the kingdom, opening movie theaters, allowing women to drive and defanging the country's once-feared religious police.

However, U.S. intelligence agencies believe the crown prince also ordered the slaying and dismemberment of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, while overseeing airstrikes in Yemen that killed hundreds of civilians.

World reacts--or not

Other than Iran, no government, including Western democracies, reacted to the mass killing.  Iran has unilaterally suspended talks aimed at defusing longstanding tensions with regional rival Saudi Arabia, Iranian state media reported on March 13.

The New York Time noted the silence of Western demcracies linking it to events in Ukraine.

Noting that Western countries were looking to Saudi Arabia, one of the world’s largest oil producers, to help make up for the shortfall in oil supplies as many countries shun energy from Russia because of President Vladimir V. Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, she added, “We cannot show our revulsion for Putin’s atrocities by rewarding those of the crown prince.” https://www.nytimes.com/2022/03/12/world/middleeast/saudi-arabia-executions.html 

Media Coverage Sample:








Sunday, March 13, 2022

The West has instrumentalized human rights for its benefits and conveniently ignored it otherwise

    Sunday, March 13, 2022   No comments

 Trusting governments with human rights matters is like trusting a wolf to watch over your sheep; this reality is more evident now with the Western governments' reaction to the war in Ukraine. Human rights are secondary to their economic interests. British government is making the case for this argument.

Britain defended, on Sunday, its efforts to persuade Saudi Arabia to increase its oil production, after Western consumers began to feel the repercussions of sanctions imposed on Russia, and after the kingdom carried out record death sentences against 81 convicts in one day.

The Minister of Housing and Communities, Michael Gove, did not deny reports published on Saturday by "The Times" that Prime Minister Boris Johnson will visit Saudi Arabia within days.

And the newspaper reported that Johnson will seek to urge Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to help ease the impact of the sanctions imposed on Russia on Westerners against the backdrop of its invasion of Ukraine, after Britain and the United States announced a ban on Russian oil imports.



The West has instrumentalized human rights for its benefits and conveniently ignored otherwise


 


Friday, July 13, 2018

Saudi authorities arrest Sheikh Safar Ibn Abd al-Rahman al-Hawali, and sons, for criticizing rulers domestic and foreign policies

    Friday, July 13, 2018   No comments
Human rights campaigners and online activists said on Thursday that Sheikh Safar Ibn Abd al-Rahman al-Hawali had been detained, without providing further details.
However, some of his followers believe that he was arrested because of his views that were expressed in a 3000 page eBook released last week. In the book al-Hawali is highly critical of Saudi foreign and domestic policies and military interventions in the region.

The book, Muslims and Western Civilization, is available only in Arabic at this point, is available in the public domain and can be read below.


Hawali is a leading figure in Saudi Arabia's Sahwa (Awakening) movement, which opposes the presence of US troops in the Arabian Peninsula.

In the 1990s, Hawali was jailed for opposing the Saudi ties with US troops leading a military operation in Kuwait. In 1993, he was banned from public speaking and dismissed from his academic posts on suspicion of attempting to incite civil disobedience. In 1994, the Islamic scholar was once again arrested, but was soon released.

Last month, Saudi authorities detained a number of prominent women’s rights advocates, just days before lifting the decades-long ban on women's driving.

Hundreds of influential Saudi businessmen and members of the royal family were also rounded up in November 2017 in an alleged “anti-corruption campaign” spearheaded by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Bin Salman was appointed the first in line to the Saudi throne by his father, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, last June.

Since then, he has engaged in a string of radical economic and social projects in a bid to portray himself as “reformist.” However, those projects have been widely seen as being more about consolidating his personal power rather than bringing about real change to Saudi Arabia.


Read News report about the arrest of al-Hawali

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المسلمون والحضارة الغربية




Sunday, September 10, 2017

270,000 Flee Myanmar in Two Weeks: UN Migration Agency in Bangladesh Scales Up Emergency Response

    Sunday, September 10, 2017   No comments
Bangladesh, - IOM, the UN Migration Agency, today (8/9) confirmed that 270,000 people have fled violence in Myanmar to seek safety in Bangladesh since 25 August.

IOM, which yesterday allocated USD 1 million from its emergency funds to boost the humanitarian response in Cox’s Bazar, is working with the government and partners to scale up its delivery of lifesaving aid to those most in need. Immediate priorities have been identified as shelter, drinking water, food and medical assistance.

The UN Central Emergency Response Fund yesterday also announced a further USD 7 million to help the thousands of destitute people who continue to flood into Bangladesh.

“I came here three days back along with my husband and four children. It took us six days to walk here, and we had very little to eat. I couldn’t bring anything with me. Even the clothes we had with us, we lost on the way. We now desperately need food and shelter. We need materials to cook with and a place to wash. We haven’t been able to get anything yet, except this meal today,” said Najuma Begum, speaking to IOM staff collecting needs data at a food distribution centre near the Kutupalong makeshift settlement.

While Najuma’s family managed to get a ready cooked meal at the food distribution centre, many people have now set up camp in areas which are too far from established support centres to receive help. Most families are living in the open, in the rain, with children and the elderly at particularly high risk of getting sick.

The number of new arrivals has increased considerably in part due to the joint needs assessment carried out on 6 September, when inter-agency teams visited more host community locations. Arrivals identified in previously unvisited host community settings tally 75,000 in 9 locations visited. At the same time, arrival numbers in the previously known makeshift locations also continue to increase, and over 10,000 are staying in Teknaf Municipality area.

An estimated 130,000 of the new arrivals are now living in the registered refugee camps and three makeshift settlements of Kutupalong, Leda and Balukhali. Another estimated 90,000 people are sheltering in host communities, and nearly 50,000 have settled in new spontaneous settlements which are expanding quickly with people still searching for space to make temporary shelters.

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