Articles on Human rights

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Reform within the Indonesian police have been very slow, with discriminatory ‘virginity testings’ and police torture and brutality still rampant. global-citizen-01.blogspot.com/flickr

Indonesia’s police ‘virginity tests’ fit pattern of flagrant rights abuses

Human Rights Watch reported last week that Indonesian police conducted two-finger “virginity tests” on young female police cadets as part of their recruitment process. Following a public uproar, the Indonesian…
Criminals the lot of them: that is what people who stand against government plans ‘to rebuild Tasmania’s forestry industry’ could become under the new anti-protest law.

Criminalising dissent: anti-protest law is an ominous sign of the times

The Workplaces (Protection from Protesters) Bill – locally known as the “anti-protest” bill – was passed by Tasmanian parliament late on Tuesday night. The law was introduced as part of the government’s…
UN troops come close to being above the law. Peter Macdiarmid/PA Archive

When UN peacekeepers commit atrocities, someone has to act

Sexual exploitation, child abuse, corruption and torture. These are just some of the many crimes committed by United Nations peacekeepers. Such abuses have the potential to undermine and even delegitimise…
The new UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra'ad al Hussein, criticised Australia in his opening address to the UN Human Rights Council. EPA/Salvatore di Nolfi

Explainer: why is the UN reviewing Australia’s record on torture?

The Australian government is being examined on Monday evening by the United Nations Committee against Torture. Before the independent committee of experts, an Australian government delegation has to answer…
Protestors demand answers over undercover policing in 2011. John Stillwell/PA Archive

British undercover police never had a moral compass to lose

The Metropolitan Police has agreed to pay more than £400,000 to an anonymous woman who unwittingly entered a relationship with an undercover police officer investigating her. The woman was left traumatised…
Kicking foreign prisoners out isn’t – and shouldn’t be – easy. Yorkshire Police

Why it’s difficult to deport foreign offenders

Once upon a time, you could tell an election was just around the corner when politicians of all kinds started talking relentlessly about crime. “Tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime” was Tony Blair’s…
Lack of evidence. EPA/Peter de Jong

If Uhuru Kenyatta trial falls apart, the ICC may be doomed

Uhuru Kenyatta, incumbent president of Kenya, has finally appeared before the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague. He is charged with murder, forcible transfer, rape, persecution, and other…
Don’t drink the water. EPA/Marco Dormino/UN

Haitian cholera victims could soon bring the UN to court

In October 2010, a cholera outbreak began in Haiti for the first time in more than 100 years. The strain that was brought into Haiti has been traced to a region in Nepal from which a UN peacekeeping contingent…
Paediatricians says children’s trauma is compounded when they are placed in mandatory detention. Australian Human Rights Commission/AAP

Paediatricians say mandatory detention is child abuse

More than 80% of Australian paediatricians believe mandatory detention of asylum seeker children constitutes child abuse…
Troops conduct an anti-terrorist drill in front of a banner of one of the Saudi royal family. Despite the kingdom’s role in fostering extremism, the US sees Saudi Arabia as an ally against Islamic State. EPA/Saudi Press Agency

Anti-terrorism plan must tackle ‘allies’ who also fuel radicalism

As Australia prepares to join combat operations, the coalition of nations stitched together by the US in response to the developing threat of Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS or ISIL) is overlooking the…
Symbols such as the monument of the slain Indonesian generals continue to propagate Suharto’s version of events to today’s Indonesian youth. Chez Julius Livre 1/Flickr

Breaking the silence around the 1965 Indonesian genocide

Next year it will be 50 years since a group of middle-ranking army officers abducted the top brass of the Indonesian army. They had planned to bring them before President Sukarno, as they had heard rumours…
Immigration Minister Scott Morrison and Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng toast the resettlement deal, which has alarmed refugee advocates. EPA/Mak Remissa

Explainer: does the Cambodia refugee deal comply with the convention?

The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Australia and Cambodia raises important questions about Australia’s international legal obligations, the nature of regional refugee protection and resettlement…

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