Unite for Human Rights – May 15 – Special Post

15 May

Bloggers Unite

Given that this blog has committed itself to blog about human rights on 15 May on Bloggers Unite for Human Rights, we have picked some urgent issues to highlight the continuing prevalent human rights violations that are occurring around the world…

If there is an issue that has gone on for too long, it must be Israel’s continuing Occupation that requires immediate international attention and action. As Israel celebrates its 60th year of independence, Palestinians mark this same anniversary as the start of their collective and national suffering, the Nakba. BBC has produced a slideshow and provide a glimpse of the life of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, at the Shatila camp. Showing the squalid conditions of these Palestinians who have been driven off their homeland for close to 4 generations, these pictures tell a thousand words of the daily sufferings that Palestinians have to go through.

In Asia, the Burmese, like the Palestinians, have equally endured an extended period of human rights violations under oppressive military rule since 1962. Despite the disastrous effects of Cyclone Nargis, the junta has proceeded with a referendum which seeks to further consolidate their power. Human Rights Watch have criticized the referendum as a sham and condemned the junta for arresting activists who are opposed to the exercise:

‘On March 30 and April 1, security forces detained seven members of the opposition National League for Democracy after they had participated in a peaceful march in downtown Rangoon wearing T-shirts emblazoned “No.” Between April 25-29 the Thai-based Association for Assistance to Political Prisoners in Burma reported that over 70 Burmese activists have been arrested trying to stage demonstrations in Burma’

In America, its war on terror has been closely associated with Guantanamo Bay and torture. In this regard, Amnesty International has stepped up its ‘End Illegal US detention’ campaign, urging the Bush Administration not only to shut down the detention facilities; but also include amongst its other recommendations, to immediately release the detainees or give them a fair trial. 1238 parliamentarians from 30 countries ranging from Europe to Middle East and Asia have pledged their support and endorsed the drive.

On detention without trial, the US has also invoked ‘Security Council resolutions to justify holding thousands of Iraqis for indefinite periods, without judicial review, and under military processes that do not meet international standards’ in Iraq. According to UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI), this figure reaches 24,514 by the end of 2007.

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