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The Weekly Brief

Just a quick update in case you missed it.

Released on 29.03.2024

Council of Europe Commissioner condemns GD’s homophobic bill

On Wednesday, the CoE released a statement from the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Dunja Mijatović. With LGBTI people continuing to be the target of hate crimes and pervasive discrimination in Georgia, as well as the regular occurrence of LGBTI people being denied their right to peaceful assembly, Mijatović has repeatedly called on the Georgian authorities to commit to a zero-tolerance policy and practice towards all forms of discrimination, and incitement to discrimination and violence, against LGBTI people.

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Ukrainian children face dire future under Russian occupation, human rights experts warn

Olha Skrypnyk, head of the Crimean Human Rights Group, has raised further alarm over the fate of Ukrainian children in territories occupied by Russia. Speaking at the "Stolen Childhood" conference in Kyiv, Skrypnyk detailed the dire circumstances these children face: immediate threats from ongoing shelling and a future of being coerced into the ranks of the Russian army. Skrypnyk accused Russia of committing international crimes against children, including propaganda to recruit them into military service, a violation of the Geneva Convention.

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Baloch Human Rights Council seeks UN fact-finding mission to investigate rights violation in Balochistan

Amid the increase in cases of alleged enforced disappearances in Pakistan, the Baloch Human Rights Council urged the United Nations to dispatch a fact finding mission to investigate the human rights violations in Balochistan, Baloch Human Rights Council said in an official statement on Wednesday. This came during a side event hosted on the sidelines of the 52nd Session of UN Human Rights Council by the General Secretary of the Baloch Human Rights Council to highlight the atrocities faced by the Baloch people in Pakistan.

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International community urged to support Burundi in addressing human rights issues

A UN expert today urged the international community to reaffirm its support for Burundi to address human rights challenges, and engage with the Burundian Government and other actors to identify ways to further strengthen peace, democracy, security and the rule of law in the country. During his visit, Zongo gathered information on the situation of Burundian nationals living in Rwanda through meetings with several actors and visited refugees camps.

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UN rights committee urges UK to drop plan to deport refugees to Rwanda

The United Nations Human Rights Committee urged Britain on Thursday to abandon a contentious bill to deport refugees to Rwanda, which could become law next month. In its review of the United Kingdom, the committee said it regretted the arrangements made with some with third countries, particularly Rwanda, to transfer asylum seekers, as well as “efforts to adopt the Safety of Rwanda (Asylum and Immigration) Bill despite the UK Supreme Court’s ruling that the arrangement would not be compliant with international law”.

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Syrians Face Dire Conditions in Turkish-Occupied ‘Safe Zone’

Turkish authorities are deporting or otherwise pressuring thousands of Syrians to leave the country to Tel Abyad, a remote Turkish-occupied district of northern Syria where humanitarian conditions are dire, Human Rights Watch said today. Between January and June 2023, the Tel Abyad border crossing administration published monthly or daily numbers of Syrian returnees on its Facebook page, labeling all as voluntary. An analysis of the page reveals an over twofold increase compared to the same period in 2022.

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Outrage as Saudi Arabia picked to head women's rights forum

Saudi Arabia's UN ambassador, Abdulaziz Alwasil, has been chosen to chair the world body's Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) after the country's bid for the position remained unopposed. The choice has been slammed by rights groups, as women in Saudi Arabia itself are severely disadvantaged under law. Such posts rotate among the UN’s five regional groups, and are usually confirmed unanimously, in a precedent that other countries may have been unwilling to upset. The Asia group, which includes Saudi Arabia, unanimously confirmed the Saudi candidacy.

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