April 8th, 2016
News round-up 8/4/16
News from HART
- This week, we have been closely monitoring the escalating conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh. Read words from our local partners here and add a message of support for civilians in Nagorno-Karabakh here.
- Next week is the HART Prize for Human Rights Prize Giving and Exhibition. Click here to book your free ticket for the Exhibition and Prize Giving on 12th April 2016.
— HART-UK (@HARTnews) April 5, 2016
- In a phone call on Wednesday, President Obama congratulated President Htin Kyaw and “applauded the National League for Democracy (NLD) leadership for reaching a historic milestone in democratic reform”.
- The Asian Correspondent has announced that Aung San Suu Kyi plans to “free all political prisoners in Burma as soon as possible”.
- Meanwhile, Thein Sein’s inflammatory spokesperson, Zaw Htay (better known by his Facebook account Hmuu Zaw) “will serve another term in the President’s Office but in the higher position of deputy director general”. Hmuu Zaw’s has been posting provocative statements inciting hate toward the Rohingya over the past years which has made his promotion particularly controversial.
- In addition, a “coalition of European groups have called on the new Burmese government to address the Rohingya crisis that has left 150,000 people displaced”.
- A group of youth brutally raped and repeatedly abused a minor Dalit girl for over two months by blackmailing the victim with visuals of the initial assault they had filmed.
- Pakistan’s ambassador to India has said the peace process between India and Pakistan is currently suspended.
- The Bombay High Court has said that women have the ‘fundamental right‘ to enter temples
- According to both Euronews and Reuters UK, Russia will be leading diplomatic efforts in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, to broker an agreement between Armenia and Azerbaijan after fighting broke out last Saturday. Since, a ceasefire was agreed on Wednesday, which some claim was broken shortly after.
- However, more recent reports claim that “Azerbaijan and Armenian-backed separatists struck a temporary deal to allow each side to safely search for the bodies of their soldiers killed in clashes”.
- On Tuesday, Nigerian officials gave permission for a memorial event at the school in Chibok, northeastern Nigeria, from where Islamist rebels abducted 276 girls two years ago. It will be held on 14 April, exactly two years since Boko Haram fighters stormed the Government Secondary School.
- Nigeria’s Defence Ministry has started a programme “Operation Safe Corridor”, aimed at rehabilitating former fighters of the Islamist militant group Boko Haram. The programme is part of government efforts to counter the Boko Haram.
- A prominent Nigerian jihadist and leader of a Boko Haram splinter group named Ansaru, Khalid al-Barnawi, has been arrested in Kogi state.
- The Nigerian Army has rescued 275 people who were being held captive by Boko Haram in Borno State.
- The United Nations says it will relocate its humanitarian coordination centre to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, to enable it respond effectively to the humanitarian crisis created by the Boko Haram insurgency in north-eastern Nigeria.
- As many as 55,000 South Sudanese have fled to neighbouring Sudan since January, escaping conflict and food shortages at a rate of almost 1,000 per day.
- The United Nations Mission in South Sudan has imposed limits on reporters’ access to UN-run ‘protection sites’ in South Sudan where close to 200,000 people are living in harsh and sometimes overcrowded conditions after fleeing attacks on their villages or neighbourhoods.
- Up to 400,000 people in Sudan may need food aid because of poor rains caused by the El Nino weather phenomenon according to a UN official.
- United Nations sanctions monitors confirmed in their latest report the recent presence of cluster munitions in Sudan’s conflict-torn Darfur region in violation of a U.N. arms embargo.
- Tensions are running high in Darfur ahead of a controversial referendum that could see the war-torn region reorganised into a single semi-autonomous zone.
- Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir has told the BBC he will step down in 2020, when his current mandate ends.
- Fierce fighting is taking place in the Nuba Mountains area of South Kordofan since as the Sudanese government army launched a large-scale campaign on the rebel positions.
According to the BBC, “Uganda’s only radiotherapy machine used for treating cancer is broken beyond repair”, leaving thousands of patients without critical, life-saving treatment.
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