Hundreds arrested after self determination protest West Papua

More than 500 people have been arrested in West Papua after protests on the 55th anniversary of the Indonesian military occupation of the region last week. TeleSUR English reported that a total of 528 people were arrested by Indonesian authorities, with at least one report of a protestor being tortured by security forces. Several children are also thought to be amongst those detained. West Papua independence leader Benny Wenda said in a statement that in “this year alone over 4,800 people have been unlawfully arrested and many others killed and tortured by the Indonesian military and police...

Bosnian authorities make arrests over war crimes

Bosnian authorities have arrested two people this week over alleged war crimes committed more than 20 years ago. The State Investigation and Protection Agency arrested Bosiljko Kraljevic, a former member of the ‘Klis’ First Battalion of the Third Brigade of the Croatian Defence Council, over allegations over his involvement in war crimes committed in 1993. The prosecution added that it seized weapons used during the war, “as well as some military documentation and other evidence related to the war period”. Meanwhile a former Bosnian Army soldier was arrested on suspicion of committing war...

UN mandates special team to consolidate evidence and prosecute for war crimes in Syria

The United Nations General Assembly voted to establish an investigative body to “collect, consolidate, preserve and analyse evidence,” as well as prepare cases on war crimes and human rights abuses committed during the conflict in Syria, reports the Telegraph. The resolution, tabled by Liechtenstein, passed with a vote 105 to 15 with 52 abstentions, with objections from Syria and Russia. The special team is expected to prepare files in order to facilitate and expedite fair and independent criminal proceedings in accordance with international law standards, in national, regional or...

Cameroon urged to investigate deaths during Anglophone protests

International organizations are calling for an investigation after security forces killed at least four people during protests in Anglophone regions of Cameroon. Amnesty International describes actions taken by the state to be excessive – as security forces fired live ammunition and teargas at a market despite the lack of evidence that protests were in fact taking place. Unrest in two English-speaking regions has developed over the past month due to claims of discrimination. A protestor in Kumba states, “Southern Cameroonians do not benefit anything from the French Cameroon. We want this to...

Manhunt over Berlin lorry attack

An international manhunt is now on the way as authorities attempt to apprehend the driver of a truck which was intentionally driven into Berlin's iconic Christmas market killing 12. Witnesses said they saw a masked man escape from the truck and run away from the scene. A suspect who was arrested following the incident was released yestereday cleared off any involvement. The incident, which echoed the lorry attack in France on Bastilles Day earlier this year, has been claimed by Islamic State.

Andrey Karlov, Russian ambassador to Turkey assassinated

Russia’s ambassador to Turkey was shot and killed in Ankara while giving a speech at an embassy sponsored photo exhibition. The assailant was identified as a 22 year-old off duty police officer. After shooting the ambassador the assailant referenced Aleppo: “Don't forget Aleppo, don't forget Syria.” "Whoever took part in this cruelty will pay the price, one by one ... Only death will take me from here," he stated in Turkish. "We are the descendants of those who supported the Prophet Muhammad, for jihad," he said. Ankara’s Mayor Melih Gokcek, told reporters that the attack was aimed to disrupt...

Rwanda expresses concern at early release of genocide convicts

The Rwandan government said it was “concerned and worried” after two people convitced over their role in the 1994 genocide have been granted early releases from their prison sentences. Ferdinand Nahimana and Emmanuel Rukundo, convicted to 30 years and 23 years respectively, have been held in prison in Mali, following their sentencing. However, the UN Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (MICT) has reportedly allowed both men to be considered for early release as they have “demonstrated some signs of rehabilitation”. The move has angered some with Rwanda’s Minister for Justice and...

Thousands evacuated from Aleppo under new agreement

After days of negotiations and stalled deals, a new agreement has led to the evacuations of thousands of civilians from eastern Aleppo, according to latest reports. The BBC reported that 4,500 civilians had left the besieged region so far on Monday, as they left to other opposition held areas to the west of Aleppo. Turkey’s foreign minister Mevlut Cavusogulu said that 20,000 people had been evacuated so far and that efforts were continuing. Buses also left the Shi'ite Muslim villages of al-Foua and Kefraya, north of Idlib, which have been surrounded by opposition forces, as part of the newly...

UN Human Rights Commission warns of genocide in South Sudan

The head of the UN Human Rights Commission, Yasmin Sooka, warned this week that South Sudan was "on the brink of an all-out ethnic civil war" where genocide was a strong possibility. Addressing the UN Human Rights Council on Wednesday, Ms Sooka said a "Rwanda-like" genocide could be prevented if 4000 UN peacekeepers were deployed to protect civilians. UN investigators who recently visited the country said "a steady process of ethnic cleansing is already under way in some parts of the country," she added. See video here .

US blocks arms deal with Saudi Arabia over Yemen

The United States announced that it will block the transfer of a set of precision-guided weapons to Saudi Arabia, over concerns regarding civilian casualties in the conflict in Yemen. Josh Earnest, the White House press secretary, said the United States has “long expressed some very significant concerns about the high rate of civilian casualties”. He made the statement as the Obama administration announced the sale of about 16,000 guided munitions kits by Raytheon is to be blocked. The contract is estimated to have been worth $350 million, reports the New York Times. However, other military...

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