• Human Rights

    At UN, Momentum Is Gaining to End Modern-Day Slavery and Human Trafficking

    by  • April 11, 2016 • Asia, Human Rights, Human Trafficking, Poverty, Sustainable Development Goals, UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Women's Issues • 1 Comment
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    Mira Sorvino and Yuri Fedotov

    Experts on human trafficking and slavery are calling for strong involvement by the private sector in tackling the enormous challenge of these abuses, particularly with girls and women. At the same time, the experts, who spoke at a recent panel discussion held at the United Nations, recognized the daunting task in asking industry to...

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    Fleeing Violence, Syrian Women Try to Cope in Turkey and Lebanon

    by  • April 6, 2016 • Gender-Based Violence, Human Rights, Middle East, Refugees, Syria, Women's Issues • 
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    You Are Not Alone JOHANNA HIGGS

    GAZIANTEP, Turkey — Amima and Fatima Jebari are Syrian sisters who fled last year to the southern Turkish city of Gaziantep, near the Syrian border, after the Free Syrian Army entered their village in the north, they said, and violence ensued between the rebel group and the government forces of Bashar al-Assad in the...

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    As Women’s Rights Gain Broadly in Africa, the Global Picture Looks More Mixed

    by  • March 15, 2016 • Africa, Gender-Based Violence, Human Rights, Latin America, Women's Issues • 
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    From left: Ruchira Gupta, Liesl Gerntholtz, Abosede George, Gimena S√°nchez and Ellen Chesler.

    Hailing from various corners of the world, five activists gathered in New York recently to assess the progress of women’s rights globally — presenting a mixed picture of gains in Africa but threats to women’s rights through new programs countering violent extremism — just as the world celebrated International Women’s Day. The five women,...

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    In London, a New Academic Center Focuses on Sexual Violence in Conflict

    by  • March 8, 2016 • Gender-Based Violence, Human Rights, Peace and Security, Women's Issues • 
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    Christine Chinkin, director GUY JORDAN

    LONDON — The Center for Women, Peace and Security, based at the London School of Economics in Britain, is a year old. The first of its kind in Europe, the center aims to shed light on the prevalence of violence against women during conflict through academic research and forums. The concept of the center...

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    Syrian Women Are Ready to Participate in UN-Led Geneva Peace Talks

    by  • January 20, 2016 • Gender-Based Violence, Human Rights, Middle East, Syria • 1 Comment
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    A family in Syria sheltering in the basement of an abandoned school, in March 2013. R. GARCIA VILANOVA/ICRC

    While new Syrian peace talks organized by the United Nations remain tentatively scheduled to begin on Jan. 25 in Switzerland, a substantial group of Syrian women is preparing to convene in Geneva starting that day to demand an equal place at the negotiations table. Staffan de Mistura, the UN special envoy for Syria, who...

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    Report Damns the UN for Its Response to Sex Abuse Cases in Central Africa

    by  • December 17, 2015 • Africa, Gender-Based Violence, Human Rights, UN Peacekeeping • 
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    Marie Deschamps

    A strongly worded independent report released Dec. 17 condemned the United Nations for bungled and deceptive responses to reports of sexual abuse of children by primarily French peacekeepers in the Central African Republic in 2014. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed his “profound regret” and accepted blame for the organization’s systemic failures. The report implicated at...

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    The UN’s Demands to Stop the Violence in Yemen Fall on Deaf Ears

    by  • October 26, 2015 • Human Rights, Humanitarian Aid, Middle East, Secretary-General, Security Council • 
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    Saudi led airstrike in Sana

    While the regional coalition led by Saudi Arabia continues its aerial bombardment against the Houthi rebels in Yemen, and as ground troops — from Bahrain, Sudan and United Arab Emirates — join the Saudis in the fray, the pain dealt to civilians, especially children, has been rising ever since the war began in March....

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    Repression of Civil Society in Cambodia Reflects an Alarming Global Trend

    by  • October 11, 2015 • Asia, Human Rights • 
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    Protesters rallied in Phnom Penh this summer to vent frustration over a new law restricting civil society. ©LICADHO

    PHNOM PENH — Accused of organizing an “insurrection” last year, nearly a dozen Parliament ministers from the political opposition were sentenced to prison terms from 7 to 20 years by a Phnom Penh court this summer. The charge stemmed from demonstrations held in July 2014, rallying the opposition to end the national ban on...

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    Human Rights and the UN’s SDGs: A Sidelined Priority?

    by  • September 3, 2015 • Human Rights, Sustainable Development Goals • 
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    Syrian refugees

    This month, a summit of world leaders at the United Nations is to adopt a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to take the relay from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which have yielded mixed results when it comes to making the world a better place for peace, development and the universal realization of...

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    Despite Peace Talks, Colombians Are Still Terrified of the FARC

    by  • August 31, 2015 • Child Soldiers, Human Rights, Latin America, Women's Issues • 1 Comment
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    Silvia, Cauca. JOHANNA HIGGS

    MEDELLIN, Colombia — “There is conflict in every single country in the world,” a 16-year-old former combatant from the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia, or FARC, rebel group said at a rehabilitation center for demobilized child soldiers here in Colombia’s third-largest city. Yet when it was pointed out that there was no conflict in...

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