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Myanmar military committed ‘routine, systematic’ sexual violence against ethnic minorities, UN experts find

Myanmar’s military must stop using sexual and gender-based violence to terrorize and punish ethnic minorities, according to a new report released on Thursday by the United Nations Independent International Fact-Finding Mission. “Extreme physical violence, the openness in which it is conducted … reflects a widespread culture of tolerance towards humiliation and the deliberate infliction of severe physical […]

Steps taken to end Saudi ‘guardianship’ system for women, ‘encouraging’ start

Allowing Saudi women to apply for passports and travel without their guardians’ permission is “an encouraging move” towards the “complete abolition of the ‘guardianship’ system,” independent United Nations rights experts said on Thursday, but more action is needed to fully dismantle these restrictions. “Any progress will remain very frail unless accompanied by wider reforms and […]

FROM THE FIELD: ‘Eco-warriors’ fight climate change in South Africa

Schools in South Africa have been designating students as “eco-warriors” as part of an initiative supported by the UN Development Programme (UNDP), to drive environmental and climate change awareness amongst the young and old in their communities. The youthful warriors have supported rubbish clean-up campaigns around their schools, eliminating over 1000 illegal dumping sites. Other […]

‘Act with restraint’ UN urges Hong Kong authorities and protestors, as airport is disrupted for a second day

After two consecutive days of chaos at Hong Kong International Airport, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) Michelle Bachelet expressed her concern and condemned “any form” of violence or destruction of property and urged the demonstrators to “express their views in a peaceful way”. The High Commissioner is “concerned by the ongoing events in the […]