HART Weekly News Round-up 22/01/16

January 22nd, 2016

HART Weekly News Round-up 22/01/16

News from HART


Burma 

  • 52 political prisoners were freed in an amnesty on Friday. Nevertheless, AAPP (Burma) have raised some concerns regarding the 408 people still awaiting trial for political actions.
  • A Kachin aid worker has been sentenced for 6 months in prison for a Facebook post ‘deemed to defame the Burma Army’.
  • An Alliance of women’s rights organisations in Burma have called for greater inclusion of women in Burma’s peace process’. Only approx. 7% of participants in a recent Union Peace Conference were women.
  • Kachin Women’s Association in Thailand and Legal Aid Network have released a new report on sexual violence and war crimes in Burma.
  •  Tony Blair has been in Burma for at least the fifth time since Thein Sein has been in power according to The Irrawwaddy. The purposes of his visits are unclear, leading mark Framer from Burma Campaign UK to say, “Tony Blair should be transparent about what who he is working for and why he keeps visiting Burma”.

India

Nagorno-Karabakh

Nigeria

South Sudan

  • The leadership of the armed opposition say that South Sudan’s president is using delaying tactics to prevent the implementation of the peace agreement.
  • SPLM/A-IO leader Riek Macher says he will not return to Juba unless President Salva Kiir revokes the 28 administrative districts he created unilaterally last year.
  • The UN is seeking $1.3 billion in humanitarian aid for South Sudan, where two in ten members of the population have been driven from their homes in the two years of conflict.
  • At least five people are feared dead after fresh fighting erupted in Yambio, officials say.
  • The United States embassy in the South Sudanese capital, Juba, has issued a statement on behalf of Troika member countries (United States, United Kingdom and Norway), confirming that it will stop by Friday the accommodation in Juba of hundreds of members of the armed opposition faction, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM-IO), under the leadership of former vice-president, Riek Machar. Analyst John Ashworth commented, While one can understand the Troika’s frustration, they are playing a very dangerous game indeed. In a situation which is so fragile, volatile and lacking in trust all round, trying to enforce arbitrary deadlines through this type of pressure can be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. It should be remembered that none of the parties are united and within each of them there are strong groups who oppose the implementation of the peace agreement. This type of action by the Troika can strengthen the hand of the spoilers and create more confusion and mistrust.”

Sudan

  • Eight students, belonging to the eastern Sudanese Beja ethnic group, will Sunday stand trial in the Red Sea city of Port Sudan for organizing a demonstration in commemoration of the victims of the September 2013 riots against hikes in fuel prices.
  • The Sudanese government’s offensive against the rebel Sudan Liberation Movement led by Abdel El Nur entered its sixth day on Wednesday.
  • The joint peacekeeping operation in Darfur, UNAMID, has said it is alarmed by the ongoing fighting between government and rebel forces, confirming the bombing in the Jebel Marra area.
During HART's visit to the Nuba Mountains last week, staff met with IDPs sheltering in caves from aerial bombardment

During HART’s visit to the Nuba Mountains last week, staff met with IDPs sheltering in caves from aerial bombardment

Uganda

  • The EU has said that it will analyse Uganda’s election campaign funding. It has introduced a new criterion in its mission – ascertaining sources and values of funds that candidates are using in the campaign.
  • 45% of voters in 89 districts across Uganda don’t know the date of the 2016 presidential election, an opinion poll by Research World International has revealed.
  • The budget for procurement of anti-retroviral drugs (ARVs), which are used to treat patients with HIV/AIDS, saw a shortfall of Shs34.7 billion. According to doctors, if the money is not raised, ARVs will not be available to everyone and will translate into resistance for those already on treatment and increase new infections.

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