25 August 2021 - NPWJ News Digest on international criminal justice

Articles

UNICEF warns 10 million Afghan children in desperate need
Al Jazeera, 25 Aug 2021

Ten million children in Afghanistan are in desperate need of humanitarian assistance, UNICEF Afghanistan warns as the UN’s World Food Programme seeks $200m in food aid. Children in Afghanistan already survive on humanitarian assistance and approximately a million are expected to suffer from life-threatening malnutrition this year, according to UNICEF. David Beasley, executive director of WFP said 14 million people – one-third of the Afghan population – face food insecurity “because of several years of drought, conflict, economic deterioration, compounded by COVID”.

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As Rohingya Wait for Justice, Myanmar’s Military Continues to Revel in Impunity
The Diplomat, 25 Aug 2021

On August 25, 2017 – four years ago today – the Myanmar military launched a campaign of genocide against the Rohingya. In the weeks that followed, the military systematically attacked Rohingya villages in western Myanmar, committing mass killings, rape, and gang rape. Soldiers destroyed villages and drove about 800,000 Rohingya to Bangladesh, in an act that irreparably changed the demography of Rakhine State.

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Former Chad strongman Habre, convicted of war crimes, dies of COVID-19 in Senegal
Reuters, 24 Aug 2021

Hissene Habre, the former strongman president of Chad and security ally of the West during the Cold War who was later jailed for war crimes, died on Tuesday in Senegal at the age of 79, Senegal's justice minister said. Habre contracted COVID-19 at a clinic in the capital Dakar where he was taken 10 days ago from jail for medical reasons, Justice Minister Malick Sall, told Reuters. When his condition worsened, he was taken to Principal Hospital, where he died.

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Afghanistan: Shameful failure of UNHRC special session to address escalating human rights crisis
Amnesty International, 24 Aug 2021

The UN Human Rights Council today failed the people of Afghanistan after neglecting to establish an independent mechanism to monitor ongoing crimes under international law and human rights violations and abuses, Amnesty International said today. At the opening of today’s UNHRC special session, the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the UN Special Procedures and a host of other civil society speakers – including Amnesty International – unequivocally called for the creation of a robust investigative mechanism. Such a mechanism would allow for monitoring and reporting on human rights violations and abuses, including grave crimes under international law, and to assist in holding those suspected of criminal responsibility to justice in fair trials.

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Israel’s killing of Palestinian children
Al Jazeera, 24 Aug 2021

“Mama, mama where is Muhammad?” an agitated Omar Tamimi, 3, repeatedly asked his mother. Trying hard not to break down in front of her children, Bara’a Tamimi, from the village of Nabi Saleh, near Ramallah, tried to comfort her son before breaking down and weeping.  Last month her other son Muhammad Tamimi, 17, died after Israeli soldiers shot him in the back three times with live ammunition. “We rushed him to hospital but he died less than an hour after he was shot. They couldn’t save him,” Bara’a told Al Jazeera. There were no clashes in the village that day on July 23, but Israeli soldiers had been coming into the village on an almost daily basis and provoking the locals, shooting tear gas canisters into homes and swearing at the villagers.

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How Many People in Afghanistan Need to be Rescued? The Number Remains Elusive.
The New York Times, 24 Aug 2021

More than 70,700 people had been evacuated from Afghanistan as of Tuesday evening. Nearly 6,000 American troops are protecting the international airport in Kabul, the capital. And additional U.S. flights are leaving every 45 minutes. The Biden administration has provided a stream of updates about its airlift of Americans, Afghans and others since Aug. 14, when the Taliban closed in on Kabul. Yet U.S. officials are reluctant to offer an estimate of the one number that matters most: How many people ultimately need to be rescued.

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Hackers Release Data Trove From Belarus in Bid to Overthrow Lukashenko Regime
Bloomberg, 24 Aug 2021

Opponents of the Belarus government said they have pulled off an audacious hack that has compromised dozens of police and interior ministry databases as part of a broad effort to overthrow President Alexander Lukashenko’s regime. The Belarusian Cyber Partisans, as the hackers call themselves, have in recent weeks released portions of a huge data trove they say includes some of the country’s most secret police and government databases. The information contains lists of alleged police informants, personal information about top government officials and spies, video footage gathered from police drones and detention centers and secret recordings of phone calls from a government wiretapping system, according to interviews with the hackers and documents reviewed by Bloomberg News.

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No end to Yemen civil war on the horizon, senior UN official briefs Security Council
UN News, 23 Aug 2021

“It is imperative to resume an inclusive, Yemeni-led political process to reach a negotiated solution to the conflict,” said Khaled Khiari, Assistant Secretary-General for Middle East, Asia and the Pacific, referring to a 2015 peace plan, which called for a nationwide ceasefire, the reopening of Sana’a airport, the easing of restrictions on fuel and goods flowing through Hudaydah port, and the resumption of face-to-face political negotiations. Mr. Khiari said that the Houthis continue to make the opening of Hudaydah ports and Sana’a airport, as well as on the ending of what they call the “aggression and occupation”, conditions of their renewed participation in the political process.

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