A Pakistani student at Cornell University has translated the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Sindhi language. The full text and audio versions of the Sindhi translation is now available on the United Nations website.
See more » http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/5-quotes-from-Sushma-Swarajs-UNGA-speech/listshow/49188634.cms
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has presented on Wednesday, four points agenda in the United Nation General Assembly (UGNA) as an initiative step to promote peace with India.
1. Pakistan and India formalize and respect 2003 understanding of a complete ceasefire on the Line of Control (LoC)in Kashmir
He called UNMOGIP’s expansion to monitor the observance of ceasefire.
2. We propose Pakistan and India reaffirm that they will not resort to the threat of force under any circumstances
3. Steps must be taken to demilitarize Kashmir
4. Pakistan and India should agree mutually to withdraw troops from Siachen Glacier
Read more » Baaghi
See more » http://www.baaghi.tv/nawaz-presents-4-point-for-initiating-peace-with-india/
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UN secretary general expresses outrage over use of teargas and water cannon, as thousands of people enter Croatia
The UN secretary general has condemned the Hungarian government’s treatment of refugees on its southern border, arguing that the use of teargas, pepper spray and water cannon on people fleeing war and hardship is not acceptable.
Hungary triggered outrage from the international community on Wednesday after firing gas canisters and spraying water at crowds of frustrated refugees who had briefly broken through a border gate in protest at being prevented from crossing from Serbia.
With their path north from Serbia into Hungary – and the European Union – blocked since Tuesday, many migrants and refugees have simply turned west to the Croatian frontier. More than 5,000 people have entered since Hungary’s crackdown, Croatian police said.
Read more » The Guardian
See more » http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/17/hungary-refugees-ban-ki-moon-eu-serbia
More » Al Jazeera
Prime Minister thanked UAE for its support for India’s candidature for permanent membership of a reformed United Nations Security Council.
By: PTI | Abu Dhabi – The UAE on Monday extended support to India’s candidature for a permanent seat in the UN Security Council as the two countries called for an expeditious reform of the UN body. The assurance came after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s talks with the UAE leadership, including Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Zayad Al Nahyan. “The 70th anniversary of the United Nations is an occasion to press for early reforms of the United Nations, and that the Inter-Governmental Negotiations on the reforms of the UN Security Council should be concluded expeditiously,” a joint statement issued after the talks said. Prime Minister thanked UAE for its support for India’s candidature for permanent membership of a reformed United Nations Security Council.
News courtesy: The Indian Express
Read more » http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/uae-supports-indias-candidature-for-permanent-seat-in-unsc/- See more at: http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/uae-supports-indias-candidature-for-permanent-seat-in-unsc/#sthash.4qJSYlvi.dpuf
Amid all the Islamic State’s atrocities — its massacres of civilians, its beheading of hostages, its pillaging of antiquities — the systematic violence the jihadists have carried out against countless enslaved women and girls never fails to shock. For months now, we’ve heard appalling testimony from women who escaped the Islamic State’s clutches, many of whom endured rape and other hideous acts of violence.
Zainab Bangura, the U.N.’s special representative on sexual violence in conflict, recently conducted a tour of refugee camps in the shadow of the conflicts in Syria and Iraq, war-ravaged countries where the Islamic State commands swaths of territory. She heard a host of horror stories from victims and their families and recounted them in an interview earlier this week withthe Middle East Eye, an independent regional news site.
“They are institutionalizing sexual violence,” Bangura said of the Islamic State. “The brutalization of women and girls is central to their ideology.”
Bangura detailed the processes by which “pretty virgins” captured by the jihadists were bought and sold at auctions. Here’s a chilling excerpt:
After attacking a village, [the Islamic State] splits women from men and executes boys and men aged 14 and over. The women and mothers are separated; girls are stripped naked, tested for virginity and examined for breast size and prettiness. The youngest, and those considered the prettiest virgins fetch higher prices and are sent to Raqqa, the IS stronghold.
There is a hierarchy: sheikhs get first choice, then emirs, then fighters. They often take three or four girls each and keep them for a month or so, until they grow tired of a girl, when she goes back to market. At slave auctions, buyers haggle fiercely, driving down prices by disparaging girls as flat-chested or unattractive.
We heard about one girl who was traded 22 times, and another, who had escaped, told us that the sheikh who had captured her wrote his name on the back of her hand to show that she was his “property.”
Estimates vary, but there are believed to be somewhere between 3,000 and 5,000 women enslaved by the Islamic State. Many are Yazidis, a persecuted minority sect that the extremist Islamic State considers to be apostate “devil-worshippers,” in part because of the Yazidis’ ancient connection to the region’s pre-Islamic past. The jihadists’ treatment of Yazidi women, in particular, has been marked out by its contempt and savagery.
Here’s Bangura again:
They commit rape, sexual slavery, forced prostitution and other acts of extreme brutality. We heard one case of a 20-year-old girl who was burned alive because she refused to perform an extreme sex act. We learned of many other sadistic sexual acts. We struggled to understand the mentality of people who commit such crimes.
Hundreds of Yazidi women and girls have escaped their captors, either by running away, or being ransomed and rescued by their families. Bangura has urged international assistance in providing proper medical and “psychosocial” support to the escaped women, who have experienced terrible trauma.
News courtesy » The Washington Post
Read more » http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2015/05/22/islamic-state-burned-a-woman-alive-for-not-engaging-in-an-extreme-sex-act-u-n-official-says/?tid=sm_fb
Archaeologists and officials have expressed outrage about the bulldozing of the ancient Assyrian city of Nimrud by Islamic State militants in Iraq.
IS began demolishing the site, which was founded in the 13th Century BC, on Thursday, according to Iraqi officials.
The head of the UN’s cultural agency condemned the “systematic” destruction in Iraq as a “war crime”.
IS, which controls large areas of Iraq and Syria, says shrines and statues are “false idols” that have to be smashed.
“They are erasing our history,” said Iraqi archaeologist Lamia al-Gailani.
Read more » BBC
See more » http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-31760656
NEW DELHI: China and Russia decided on Monday to back the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT) — a resolution supported by India and heavily biased against Pakistan.
At a meeting of Russia-India-China (RIC) in Beijing, Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said her counterparts from the two countries understood the need for endorsing the resolution that has been pending at the UN for nearly two decades and seeks to widen the existing definition of terrorism.
The CCIT was proposed by India in 1996 in lieu of Pakistan allegedly backing Kashmiri separatists.
In Tuesday’s meeting, the RIC communiqué vouched to oppose terrorism of all forms and called all countries to join efforts in combating terrorism together with the United Nations.
Speaking at a press conference after the RIC meeting, Swaraj told reporters: “Our discussions on terrorism brought consensus on two issues. Firstly, there can be no ideological, religious, political, racial or any other justification for the acts of terrorism and secondly the need to bring to justice perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these acts of terror.”
Swaraj added that the ministers emphasized the need to step up information gathering and sharing and prevent the use of the Internet and other information and communication technologies (ICTs) for the purposes of recruitment and incitement to commit terrorist acts.
News courtesy » The Express Tribune
Read more » http://tribune.com.pk/story/832183/china-russia-back-india-on-un-terror-resolution-targeting-pakistan/
The unrestricted use of fossil fuels should be phased out by 2100 if the world is to avoid dangerous climate change, a UN-backed expert panel says. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says in a stark report that most of the world’s electricity can – and must – be produced from low-carbon sources by 2050. If not, the world faces “severe, pervasive and irreversible” damage. The UN said inaction would cost “much more” than taking the necessary action.
Iraq conflict: UN warns of possible Amerli ‘massacre’
The UN has called for action to prevent what it says may be a possible massacre in the northern Iraqi town of Amerli.
Special representative Nickolay Mladenov says he is “seriously alarmed” by reports regarding the conditions in which the town’s residents live.
The town, under siege by Islamic State for two months, has no electricity or drinking water, and is running out of food and medical supplies. The majority of its residents are Turkmen Shia, seen as apostates by IS.
US condemns shelling of UN school in Gaza but restocks Israeli ammunition
White House issues unusually strong rebuke after 16 deaths
But Pentagon confirms that US resupplied Israel with ammunition
The United States issued a firm condemnation of the shelling of a United Nations school in Gaza that killed at least 16 Palestinians on Wednesday, but also confirmed it restocked Israel’s dwindling supplies of ammunition.
The White House expressed concern that thousands of civilians who had sought protection from the UN were at risk after the shelling of the girls’ elementary school. Some 3,300 civilians were taking shelter there, after being told by Israel to leave their homes.
The UN agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA, which runs the school, said its initial assessment was that it has been struck by Israeli artillery.
The Iraqi government has informed the United Nations that it has lost control of a former chemical weapons depot to Islamist insurgents affiliated with ISIS, or IS, and cannot carry out its obligations to destroy what’s stored in the compound.
In a letter penned by Iraq’s UN Ambassador Mohamed Ali Alhakim, it was revealed that “armed terrorist groups” took over the Muthanna complex on June 11. Located north of Baghdad, the facility was the main center for chemical weapons production prior to the 1991 Gulf War, and is still home to 2,500 rockets containing the lethal nerve agent sarin.
According to the Associated Press, the compound is now in the hands of the Islamic State extremist group, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). In the letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Alhakim said that Iraqi officials witnessed the intruders looting some of the equipment before the surveillance system was taken offline.
The US and UN have condemned the abduction and murder of a Palestinian teenager in Israel, which sparked fierce clashes in East Jerusalem. US Secretary of State John Kerry called it “sickening” while the UN demanded justice over the “despicable act”.
What Nelson Mandela Showed is Possible Within Each Of Us
I am profoundly saddened by his passing. On behalf of the United Nations, I extend my deepest condolences to the people of South Africa and especially to Nelson Mandela’s family and loved ones.
Many around the world were greatly influenced by his selfless struggle for human dignity, equality and freedom. He touched our lives in deeply personal ways. At the same time, no one did more in our time to advance the values and aspirations of the United Nations.
Nelson Mandela devoted his life to the service of his people and humanity, and he did so at great personal sacrifice. His principled stance and the moral force that underpinned it were decisive in dismantling the system of apartheid.
Remarkably, he emerged from 27 years of detention without rancor, determined to build a new South Africa based on dialogue and understanding. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission established under his leadership remains a model for achieving justice in societies confronting a legacy of human rights abuses.
Read more » Linkedin
The Secretary-General, United Nations: Recognize “The International Day Against State Religion”
Petition by G. M. Lakho, Karachi, Sindh
Please take active, effective and meaningful steps for recognizing “The International Day Against State Religion” by the United Nations in solidarity with victims of the State Religion, namely, non-Muslims and non-believers of Pakistan.
Read more » Change.org
“On this International Day of Peace, let us pledge to teach our children the value of tolerance and mutual respect. Let us invest in the schools and teachers that will build a fair and inclusive world that embraces diversity. Let us fight for peace and defend it with all our might.”
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on 21 September. The General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, both within and among all nations and peoples.
The Russian military is bracing for what is seen as an imminent U.S. strike in Syria even as Moscow warned that the attack could trigger a nuclear Armageddon.
In addition to five warships deployed in the East Mediterranean, Russia, in recent days, has sent six more ships to the region, including the guided missile cruiser Moskva.
On Wednesday, Russia placed on heightened alert the Central Command Post of the General Staff, the Aerospace Defence command and the country’s intelligence agencies, Defence Ministry officials said.
Armed Forces Chief-of-Staff Valery Gerasimov cancelled a planned visit to Austria on Wednesday, while Deputy Defence Minister Anatoly Antonov summoned the U.S. and Israeli military attaches over a test launch of an Israeli missile on Tuesday.
Mr. Antonov described the region a “powder keg” and warned that its fire “may spread, not only to neighbouring states, but to other regions of the world.”
The Russian Foreign Ministry issued a stark warning that a U.S. strike on Syria’s nuclear facilities might result in a nuclear catastrophe.
“If a warhead, by design or by chance, were to hit the Miniature Neutron Source Reactor (MNSR) near Damascus, the consequences could be catastrophic,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said in a statement.
The region would face the risk of “contamination by highly enriched uranium and it would be virtually impossible to account for nuclear material at the facility, its control and safety,” the Russian statement said.
Moscow urged the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to “react swiftly” and carry out “an analysis of the risks linked to possible American strikes on the MNSR and other facilities in Syria.”
Russia intends to bring up the issue at a 35-nation IAEA board meeting that opens on Monday, the Interfax news agency said.
Australia has been found guilty of almost 150 violations of international law over the indefinite detention of 46 refugees in one of the most damning assessments of human rights in this country by a United Nations committee.
The federal government has been ordered to release the refugees, who have been in detention for more than four years, “under individually appropriate conditions” and to provide them with rehabilitation and compensation.
Consistent with Australia’s treaty obligations, the government has been given 180 days to assure the committee that it has acted on the recommendations and taken steps to prevent “similar violations in future”.
The UN’s Human Rights Committee concluded that the continued detention of the refugees, most of them Sri Lankan Tamils, is “cumulatively inflicting serious psychological harm” and in breach of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Courtesy: Sydney Morning Herald
NEW YORK CITY: Pakistan teenager Malala Yousafzai told the United Nations on Friday that she would not be silenced by terrorist threats, in her first public speech since being shot by the Taliban.
“They thought that the bullet would silence us, but they failed,” Malala said on her 16th birthday, which she spent making calls for greater global efforts to get children into schools.
“The terrorists thought that they would change my aims and stop my ambitions, but nothing changed in life, except this: weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, courage and fervour was born,” she said in a speech given several standing ovations.
The passionate advocate for girls education was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman as she road on a school bus near her home in Pakistan’s Swat Valley on October 12 last year.
She was given life-saving treatment in Britain where she now lives, but the attack has given new life to her campaign for greater educational opportunities for girls.
Gordon Brown, the former British prime minister and UN special envoy for education, hailed Malala as “the bravest girl in the world” as he presented her at the UN Youth Assembly.
By: Murtaza Ali Shah
LONDON: Britain and America shocked Pakistan and its allies at the 23rd regular session of the United Nations Human Rights Council’s general debate in Geneva on 7 June when the two countries clearly supported nationalist leader Mehran Marri, Balochistan’s representative to the UN, who spoke against the recent elections and alleged that Pakistan was committing rights abuses in Balochistan.
Pakistan is likely to lodge protest with both the countries for taking a hostile position towards Pakistan by intervening on behalf of Mehran Marri who alleged that the recent elections exposed the “farce that the Pakistani establishment wanted to present as democracy”. The support by the two powerful countries to a Baloch separatist leader will give strength to the view of those who suspect that there are elements within the US and the UK who have sympathies for Baloch nationalist factions for their own regional and strategic objectives.
Marri, the youngest son of Karachi-based veteran leader Nawab Khair Baksh Marri, said that the Baloch didn’t take part in the election “charade” as participating the elections would have legitimised the “injustices against the Baloch people since 7th March 1948 when Pakistan forcibly annexed Balochistan”.
Mehran Marri told the session that one of the provincial assembly member was elected with 544 votes, on a 1.18 percent voters turnout. Pakistani delegate objected to the remarks made by Marri and said that Pakistan is fully conscious of its obligations to protects the human rights of its citizens.
A video which appears to show a Syrian rebel taking a bite from the heart of a dead soldier has been widely condemned.
US-based Human Rights Watch identified the rebel as Abu Sakkar, a well-known insurgent from the city of Homs, and said his actions were a war crime.
The main Syrian opposition coalition said he would be put on trial.
The video, which cannot be independently authenticated, seems to show him cutting out the heart.
“I swear to God we will eat your hearts and your livers, you soldiers of Bashar the dog,” the man says referring to President Bashar al-Assad as he stands over the soldier’s corpse.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) says Abu Sakkar is the leader of a group called the Independent Omar al-Farouq Brigade.
“The mutilation of the bodies of enemies is a war crime. But the even more serious issue is the very rapid descent into sectarian rhetoric and violence,” HRW’s Peter Bouckaert told Reuters news agency.
HRW said those committing war crimes on either side had to know that there was no impunity and that they would be brought to account.
The human rights group said Abu Sakkar had been filmed before, firing rockets into Shia areas of Lebanon and posing with the bodies of guerrillas from the Lebanese Hezbollah movement killed fighting alongside Syrian government forces.
The video, posted on Sunday, is one of the most gruesome to emerge among the many thrown up by more than two years of carnage in Syria, says the BBC’s Jim Muir in Beirut.
The United Nations human development index now ranks Canada as 11th
Canada has slipped out of the top 10 countries listed in the annual United Nation’s human development index — a far cry from the 1990s when it held the first place for most of the decade.
The 2013 report, which reviews a country’s performance in health, education and income, places Canada in 11th place versus 10th last year.
US President Barack Obama has delivered his speech to the 67th United Nations General Assembly at its headquarters in New York.
He urged global leaders to rally against extremism, saying it was the obligation of all leaders to speak out forcefully against violence and extremism, as he framed his speech with references to the US ambassador murdered in Libya. ….
Read more » BBC
Baloch leader, Hyrbyair Marri said the brutal killing of Pashtun laborer at a time when the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntarily Disappearances is investigating Pakistan’s crimes against humanity is a clear indication that the state forces want to divert the attention of UN team from their crimes in Balochistan.
Baloch Human Rights Council (UK) welcomes the forthcoming visit of a United Nations delegation to investigate the human rights violations being committed by the Pakistani security agencies in Balochistan. Human rights organizations and Baloch political organizations have been demanding from the international community to intervene and pressurize Pakistani authorities in order to stop gross injustices to the Baloch people. The visit of a UN delegation is a very appreciable and positive step in this regard.
Dear Secretary General,
Over the past many years, the people of Balochistan have witnessed immense and brutal measures from the State of Pakistan in response to the legitimate demands of the Baloch people for fundamental human rights of civil liberty, justice and right to self-determination for sovereign Balochistan. The Pakistani state has responded with the brutal attacks committed by its military, intelligence agencies and paramilitary forces. Thousands of innocent men, women and children have been mercilessly killed, hundreds of thousands have been displaced and thousands are missing and their whereabouts are still unknown. Pakistani govt. officials have accepted of more than 1000 missing person themselves last year and we genuinely believe that their lives are in grave danger. ….
Read more » BHRC
Islamabad—United Nations has decided to send a delegation to Pakistan for reviewing the situation in Balochistan. Foreign office has been informed in this regard. The UN authorities has written a letter to foreign ministry mentioning that seven-member UN delegation would visit Pakistan from September 10 to 20 to review the situation in Balochisatan.
Justice Louise Arbour has a distinguished career devoted to promoting the principles of justice. Currently serving as the President of the International Crisis Group, Justice Arbour is the former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, a former justice of the Supreme Court of Canada and the Court of Appeal for Ontario and a former Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda. As such, she knows a thing or two about the importance of an independent judiciary in developing countries and emerging democracies. That’s why, when Justice Arbour expresses concerns about the looming constitutional crisis in Pakistan, her concerns merit serious consideration.
An ardent supporter of Pakistan’s 2007 “Lawyer’s Movement” to restore judges deposed by Gen. Musharraf, Justice Arbour had hoped to see a new era for the Court, one that broke with its past of supporting military dictators and their mangling the Constitution and the rule of law. Today, she fears that those same justices have become “intoxicated with their own independence,” and that the current direction of Pakistan’s Supreme Court Justices threatens to upend the very democratic order that restored them to the bench.
Speaking to a crowded auditorium at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, DC, Justice Arbour noted that the current tension between Pakistan’s Supreme Court and its elected officials might seem like a political soap opera were it not for Court’s history of collusion with the military to suppress democracy. Judges “who took an oath to a military dictator are not well placed to make the decision” to remove democratically elected officials, she observed, referring to Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry’s 1999 oath under Gen. Musharraf’s Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO). While not inevitable, Justice Arbour said, it is possible that Pakistan’s Supreme Court could end up dissolving the democratically elected government with the help of the military, putting in place an extended caretaker government in what would be, for all intents and purposes, another coup.
During her visit to Pakistan, she assured the room, she met with no government officials. Her interest was in the views of the legal community, whom she found deeply divided, seemingly on political lines. This troubled the former Justice, who worries that Pakistan’s Supreme Court has become increasingly politicized, threatening its credibility. She pointed to the memo commission, which she said “reflected very poorly on the judiciary,” and added to the appearance of growing politicization.
The present case, in which the Supreme Court has ordered the Prime Minister to write a letter to Swiss authorities requesting that criminal cases be reinstated against the President, adds to the appearance of an increasingly politicized judiciary. From a legal perspective, the issue centers on one of separation of powers. In fact, Pakistan’s Chief Justice has repeatedly stated recently that “parliament is not supreme.” In questions such as these, where the Supreme Court has a vested interest in the outcome, Justice Arbour suggests that it is all the more important that court show self-restraint and frame its decisions in a way that “advances the authority of all institutions,” not only its own.
UN doctor shot in Karachi
By Hasan Mansoor (AFP)
KARACHI — Gunmen opened fire on a UN vehicle in Pakistan’s volatile city of Karachi Tuesday, wounding a foreign doctor working on a polio immunisation campaign and a local driver, officials said.
The shooting, which happened in the low-income eastern neighbourhood of Soharb Ghoth, highlighted resistance to a widely publicised three-day vaccination campaign, which began Monday.
The Taliban have banned immunisations in the northwest, condemning the campaign as a cover for espionage since a Pakistani doctor was jailed after helping the CIA find Osama bin Laden using a hepatitis vaccination programme.
“A WHO vehicle was fired upon with gunshots. One international staff and one local driver were injured in the incident,” Maryam Yunus, spokeswoman for the United Nations’ World Health Organization, told AFP. ….
Read more » Google
House panel cuts foreign aid, UN and military aid to Pakistan
By Associated Press
WASHINGTON — A House panel on Wednesday moved to cut the foreign aid budget by some 9 percent, targeting economic aid and contributions to the United Nations and the World Bank.
Despite the cuts, the legislation won bipartisan backing from the Appropriations foreign aid panel, though it’s sure to draw a White House veto threat because it’s in line with a broader GOP spending plan that breaks faith with last summer’s budget and debt pact with President Barack Obama.
The panel maintains aid to Israel and Egypt at the administration’s requests but denies $800 million that was requested for a special fund for training and equipping Pakistan’s military in counterinsurgency tactics. The move appears to reflect wariness on the part of lawmakers toward the government of Pakistan, which failed to find Osama bin Laden for years until the U.S. military killed him a year ago.
Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Ill., accused Pakistan of “harboring a fugitive” and likened the U.S.-Pakistan relationship to a “bad marriage.”
Given the animosity toward Pakistan, the $800 million request for counterinsurgency efforts was an easy target, though the measure would permit transfers from other accounts to make up for some or all of the shortfall. …
Read more » The Washington Post
Via – Wichaar.com
ISLAMABAD — A man with a $10 million US government bounty on him might be expected to have gone into hiding, but Hafiz Mohammad Saeed is one of Pakistan’s most high-profile and outspoken Islamists. ….
Read more » google