Updated: Nov 18, 2019
Weekly update: 5 November - 11 November 2019
The following media round-up of international legal and foreign policy issues from around the world for the period 5 November-11 November 2019.
The Guernica Group will provide weekly media updates from the International Criminal Court, European Court of Human Rights, United Nations, European Union, and other sources. Should you wish to contribute or submit a media summary, opinion piece or blog, please send it to Nenad Vucijak for consideration.
Libya: 6 November 2019
International Criminal Court Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda told the UN Security Council on Wednesday that Libya remains entangled in a “cycle of violence, atrocities, and impunity” as she made reference to an escalation of violence. The Prosecutor noted that there has been a high number of civilian deaths, thousands internally displaced and a sharp increase in abductions, disappearances, and arbitrary arrests.
Iran: 6 November 2019
Amnesty International urges the international community to publicly condemn the deterioration in Iran’s human rights record during the country’s review session at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on 8 November. The organisation urged states taking part in Iran’s Universal Periodic Review to denounce the widespread human rights violations and make concrete recommendations for the Iranian authorities to address them.
European Court of Human Rights: 7 November 2019
In the case of Natig Jafarov v Azerbaijan, the Court unanimously held that there had been a violation of Articles 3, 5 and 18 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The case concerned Mr. Jafarov’s arrest, pre-trial detention, and confinement in a metal cage in court. The court found in particular that there had been no grounds to bring criminal charges against the applicant and that he had been arrested and placed in pre-trial detention without a reasonable suspicion that he had committed an offence.
Cambodia: 8 November 2019
A UN human rights expert is calling on the Cambodian Government to respect its citizens’ rights of freedom of opinion, expression, and assembly, amid concerns over escalating tensions and a political crackdown across the country. More than 200 cases of harassment and judicial action against members or supporters of the outlawed Cambodia National Rescue Party have been reported since January.
Nigeria: 8 November 2019
Nigeria has released 86 more children and youth from Military Prison who had been imprisoned on suspicion of being members of the extremist armed group Boko Haram. Since 2013, Nigerian authorities have detained thousands of children, the vast majority never having been charged with a crime or brought before a judge. With the help of the United Nations Children’s Fund and the Nigerian Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, they will soon be reunited with their families.
Chile: 11 November 2019
Amnesty International denounces human rights violations to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights as Chilean authorities continue to commit widespread human rights violations, showing that President Sebastián Piñera’s government as not taken effective decisions to deal with the crisis. Amnesty International continues to investigate grave human rights violations and possible crimes under international law committed during the protests in Chile.
Mexico: 11 November 2019
Mexico has granted asylum to Bolivia’s Evo Morales stating that his life was in danger following the announcement of his resignation on Sunday amid growing unrest. The action taken by Mexico has helped to cement the Mexican government’s emerging role as a bastion of diplomatic support for left-wing leaders in Latin America.
Hong Kong: 11 November 2019
The crisis in Hong Kong escalates as a protester is shot by police. Police opened fire and wounded at least one protester during a fracas that was broadcast live on Facebook, as chaos erupted across the semi-autonomous territory.
Thailand: 11 November 2019
A Thai Court has approved arrest warrants for Chaiwat Limlikit-aksorn and three other forestry officials in connection with the abduction and murder of the prominent ethnic Karen human rights defender Porlajee Rakchongcharoen known widely as “Billy” in April 2014. After more than five years of government cover-ups and delays, there is a real hope that those implicated in Billy’s death will be prosecuted.
Turkey: 11 November 2019
The Turkish government is urged to drop farcical criminal charges against students who celebrated Pride. 18 students and an academic are facing trial this week for their participation in a pride parade that had been banned by authorities at the Middle East Technical University last May. Students peacefully participating in a celebration of love and solidarity had to face police pepper spray, plastic bullets, and tear gas.