Latest International News

Zara Alvarez, Phillipines human rights activist, murdered – bringing total to 13

Ahmed Farooq, International Law Officer

On August 17, Zara Alvarez, a human rights activist, was shot and killed by armed assailants in Bacalod City.
According to Human Rights Watch, Alvarez is now the thirteenth human rights defender to be murdered in the Philippines over the last four years.

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US faces opposition from UN Security Council in its bid to sanction Iran

Ahmed Farooq, International Law Officer

On August 21, thirteen of the fifteen members on the UN Security Council pushed back against the United States’ call for the re-imposition of international sanctions on Iran.

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Mauritius oil spill: Captain of ship arrested, UN agencies to aid in response plans

Felicity Salina, International Law Officer

Mauritian authorities have arrested Sunil Kumar Nandeshwar, age 58, on Tuesday 18 August. Nandeshwar is the captain of M/V Wakashio, the Japan-registered ship that ran aground off the island’s coast, resulting in the spilling of 1,000 metric tons of oil which caused significant irreversible damage to coral reefs in the region.

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Arrest of Mali’s Keïta condemned by UN and African Union

Felicity Salina, International Law Officer

Mali President, Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta was arrested on Tuesday, 18 August, by mutinous soldiers at his residence in the country’s capital, Bamako. The arrest occurred after months of political turmoil, triggered by claims of government corruption and a deteriorating security situation by Keïta’s opponents.

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One million displaced as violence mounts in Burkina Faso

Felicity Salina, International Law Officer

A recent statement by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) revealed that over one million people have been driven out of their homes in West Africa’s Burkina Faso as a result of escalating violence, with a total of 453,000 since the beginning of the year alone. This figure makes up five percent of the country’s population, rendering the mass displacement the most alarming humanitarian and protection crisis in the world today.

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STL delivers verdict over former PM Rafic Hariri’s assassination

Felicity Salina, International Law Officer

The Trial Chamber of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) delivered its judgement on Tuesday 18 August, in the case of Ayyash et al. The proceedings concerned four individuals involved in the assassination of Lebanon’s former Prime Minister, Rafic Baha El Deen Al Hariri.

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Israeli warplanes bomb Gaza for the eighth consecutive night

Pratik Purswani, International Affairs Officer

Israeli warplanes bombed the Hamas-ruled Gaza strip for the eighth consecutive night after alleging that Palestinians fired a rocket into southern Israel.
Israel has warned Hamas that it is risking a “war” by not stopping the incendiary balloons being launched across the border. Warplanes and drones belonging to the Israeli army have struck several facilities and security posts that belong to Hamas, wounding several people. No deaths have been reported so far.

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UN report confirms status of North Korea's nuclear weapons

Amy Langley, Chief International Officer

A recent confidential report from an expert panel for the UN Sanctions Committee for North Korea has concluded that the country can now miniaturise nuclear warheads to be put onto missiles.

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Coronavirus risk sees NZ delaying election

Amy Langley, Chief International Officer

New Zealand's general elections, set to occur on September 19 this year, have been postponed by a month due to coronavirus risks. Jacinta Ardern, the nation's Prime Minister, stated that pushing elections until October 17 will give politicians time "to plan around the range of circumstances we will be campaigning under".

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"Why do we need a king?": Thai political protests demand democracy

Amy Langley, Chief International Officer

Despite law criminalizing their actions, more than 10,000 activists have taken to the streets of Bangkok, defying the Thai monarchy and demanding constitutional reform.

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Rainbow flag controversy: Political unrest in Poland over re-election of anti-LGBT President Duda

Amy Langley, Chief International Officer

Rising tensions over the re-election of strongly anti-LGBT Polish President Duda have resulted in political protests by opposition leaders and multiple charges against activists for draping the rainbow flag over historical and religious monuments.

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Saudi Arabia ends oil supply and loan to Pakistan over Kashmir dispute

Ahmed Farooq, International Law Officer

Saudi Arabia ended its loan and oil supply to Pakistan, due to the latter’s criticism of the Saudi-led Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) failing to take a stance against India over the Indian administration of Kashmir, marking the end of the historically strong friendship between the two nations.

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Isreal and UAE to commence diplomatic relations in historic move

Ahmed Farooq, International Law Officer

Through a deal largely facilitated by the US Trump administration, Israel and the United Arab Emirates have struck a deal to normalize diplomatic relations. In exchange for the commencement of political relations with the UAE, Israel will, for now, forego any plans of annexing the West Bank.

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Tiananmen vigil sees dozens charged in Hong Kong

Amy Langley, Chief International Officer

After the annual vigil in memory of the 1989 Tiananmen massacre, 24 people in Hong Kong have been charged by Chinese authorities.

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Hundreds dead and at least 5,000 injured in Beirut explosion, protests erupt amid allegations of government negligence

Felicity Salina, International Law Officer

The capital of Lebanon, Beirut, was shaken by a deadly explosion believed to have originated from a warehouse near the city’s waterfront. The explosion occurred at about 6 p.m. local time on Tuesday 4 August. As of Friday, the reported death toll stands at 154, with at least 5,000 wounded. Searches for survivors remain ongoing.

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Crowds in Istanbul protest gender-based violence

Greta Gamberini, International Affairs Officer

On August 5, 2020 large crowds gathered in Turkey’s largest cities, including Istanbul and Ankara, to protest gender-based violence. The protests occurs amidst rumors of withdrawal from the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence (Istanbul Convention).

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Barbara Woodward named as UK's new representative to the United Nations

Amy Langley, Chief International Officer

The current British ambassador to China, Dame Barbara Woodward, has been appointed as the next permanent representative to the United Nations for the UK.

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Former SS Nazi guard, 93, convicted in one of Germany’s last Holocaust trials

Felicity Salina, International Law Officer

The Hamburg state court convicted 93-year-old Bruno Dey on 5,232 counts of accessory to murder on Thursday the 23rd of July. The former SS Nazi guard was convicted for his service in the Stutthof concentration camp in east of Gdansk, Poland, from August 1944 to April 1945. The case may be one of the last to be brought against a living participant during the Holocaust.

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Poland prepares to exit treaty that protects women from violence

Ahmed Farooq, International Law Officer

Poland's justice minister, Zbigniew Ziobro, recently declared that the country would be exiting the Istanbul Convention. The treaty, signed in 2012 by the previous Polish government, protects women from various forms of violence.

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International community expresses concern over escalating tensions between Armenia and Azerbaijan

Ahmed Farooq, International Law Officer

The 12th of July 2020 saw an armed conflict transpire between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Based on United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolutions, many nations have called for Armenia to withdraw their forces from Azerbaijan completely.

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