Monthly Archive: January 2013

Political ‘offenders’ safe: Dhaka, Delhi sign landmark treaty to extradite criminals, ease visa provisions

In a major breakthrough, Bangladesh and India yesterday inked Extradition Treaty to hand over the convicted and criminals hiding in each other’s countries. Click here to see Full Text of the Treaty Click here to see Revised Travel Agreement signed in 2013 The deal, however, excluded the political asylum seekers, accused of political crimes and the offenders awarded with less...

UN human rights chief backs Verma panel report

Navi Pillay, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, has backed the Verma Committee report saying that she strongly supported the fact that the report “eschews” death penalty and any lowering of the age of juvenile perpetrators. “And that, instead, it recommends suitably heavy prison sentences ranging from seven years to life,” said Pillay in a statement. “The Committee’s recommendations...

Afghan Officials Criticize U.N. Report on the Abuse and Torture of Detainees

A United Nations report, endorsed by the international military command, about torture and abuse in Afghan-run detention facilities, has reopened fissures with American forces and underscored the Afghan government’s sensitivity to being seen as a country that permits torture. Within three days of the report becoming public, President Hamid Karzai appointed a commission to look into its findings. The National...

Support for women’s rights in the Maldives declining, finds HRCM study

Support for women’s equality has experienced a “significant drop” despite overall progress in improving the human rights situation nationally, a Human Rights Commission of the Maldives (HRCM) second baseline survey has concluded. “The ‘Rights’ Side of Life” [report] studied knowledge, behaviours and attitudes regarding human rights in the Maldives and reinforced many of the findings from the 2005 survey,” according to the UNDP-backed...

International Commission of Jurists open letter: Concerning the removal of Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake

High Excellency President Mahinda Rajapakse Honorable Speaker of the Parliament Chamal Rajapakse Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte Sri Lanka January 23, 2013 Concerning the removal of Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake Your Excellencies, The International Commission of Jurists and the undersigned senior judges and eminent jurists from around the world condemn the recent removal of Chief Justice and urge you to act...

Pakistan to release Indian fishermen, peace activists express happiness

Mumbai-based activists who have been campaigning for peace between warring neighbours India and Pakistan have expressed happiness that Pakistan has decided to release all Indian fishermen soon. Writer-activist Jatin Desai said, ” Rehman Malik, interior minister of Pakistan, announced the decision today after he had a meeting with his President Asif Ali Zardari. More than 200 Indian fishermen are held...

Bangladesh: Government to amend Chittagong Hill Tracts land commission act

The government has taken initiative to revise some provisions of the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) Land Dispute Resolution Commission Act, 2001 to make the land commission more efficient, said State Minister for CHT Affairs Dipankar Talukdar yesterday. “The land ministry and the law ministry are working together for this. We hope the commission will be effective after completion of the...

India: Gender and human rights now in school curriculum

In the next academic year, students in government and aided schools will not just be welcomed with payasam and sweets, but they will also be told about gender rights. Director of public instruction (DPI) intends to make gender and human rights and gender sensitization a regular feature of school learning. “We have lessons in social science and Malayalam on these...

Sri Lanka extends police detention of suspects amid protests

Sri Lanka approved legislation on Tuesday allowing police to hold suspects for up to 48 hours without a warrant amid street protests accusing the government of acting to suppress dissent. Rights groups assert that Sri Lanka, which has a long history of police impunity, of continuing to violate human rights despite the end of a three-decade-long war with Tamil Tiger...

Maldives government ratifies International Labour Organisation conventions on worker rights

The Maldives government has ratified eight “fundamental” International Labour Organisation (ILO) conventions designed to bring legislation on employee rights and trade unions in line with international standards. According to the ILO the conventions, which were ratified by authorities on January 4 this year, outline rights in a number of areas including allowing staff freedom of association and the prevention of child...