NEWS SERVICE REPORTS
FROM THE AFRICAN
Mali: Human rights abuses in
are now ‘more systematic’ - U.N.
More than 200,000 refugees and 300,000
internally displaced persons (IDPs) have been
registered by the UN Refugee office
UNITED NATIONS (Xinhua) --
senior UN official said here Wednesday that the
pattern of human rights violations in Mali is
now “more systematic,” and called for the
government to re- take control of the rebel-held
northern part of the West African country.
pattern of human rights violations is changing,” Ivan
Simonovic, the UN assistant secretary-general for human
rights, said at a press conference here. “What is new now
is that humans rights violations are becoming more
conference took place following Simonovic’s four-day visit
to Mali to assess the human rights situation there.
Croatian diplomat and former Croatian justice minister, was
appointed in May 2010 the UN assistant secretary- general
for human rights
have established a strict Sharia law in the north following
an unplanned coup in April, and the “population is suffering
a number of human rights violations, particularly targeted
at women,” said Simonovic.
Under the strict
laws, women are facing restrictions in the ability to work,
an increase in forced marriages and drastic punishments, he
Children are also
quite vulnerable in this situation, he said, “there is
reliable evidence of many children being enlisted” as child
that two-thirds of the country is now under the control of
Islamic militants, or roughly the size of France.
speaking about the situation in the north, the best
illustration is that over one third of the population in
the north have fled,” he said.
More than 200,000
refugees and 300,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs)
have been registered by the UN Refugee office thus far.
The situation is
so tenuous that UN officials and agencies, including those
bearing humanitarian assistance, have been barred from
entering the north of the country.
explained that the underlying instability of the West
African country, which caused the coup, is due to widespread
poverty, with more than half of the country living under the
global poverty line of 1.25 U.S. dollars a day.
is quite needed is for the government to take control over
rebel-controlled area and the organization of a credible
election,” he said. “The sooner those processes are over,
the better for the country.”
Security Council to focus on
Mali in October: president
UNITED NATIONS (Xinhua) --
The UN Security Council is to focus on the situation
in Mali and world peace and security in October, Guatemalan
UN Ambassador Gert Rosenthal, who holds the Security Council
rotating presidency for this month, told reporters here
abuses, human trafficking, smuggling of arms and devastating
levels of poverty in Mali has been “disturbing” in the last
few weeks, said Rosenthal.
The first Malian
consultation will convene Thursday as a preliminary review
of how the Security Council would like to react to the
challenges faced by Mali.
non-permanent Council member, took over the rotating Council
presidency from Germany, also a non-permanent member, from
The Council is
also expected to hold three open debates in October on world
peace and security, centering around the Middle East, the
rule of law in the maintenance of international peace and
security, as well as women and peace.
The Council is
also going to discuss the situation in Somalia, Sudan and
South Sudan this month.
The UN Deputy
Secretary-General Jan Eliasson told reporters here Tuesday
morning that the situation in Sudan and South Sudan have
improved due to recent bilateral agreement on borders and
oil following years of war.
France’s Hollande says to vote
for military intervention in Mali
PARIS (Xinhua) -- French
President Francois Hollande on Tuesday expressed his
readiness to give green light to the launching of a military
operation to end crisis in northern Mali.
has once again confirmed its readiness not only to vote
for this resolution, but to support the logistical and
political the initiative taken by Africans,” Hollande
goal is to eradicate terrorism for the interest of Mali,
Africa and also the stability of the world,” he stressed.
Speaking during a
joint press conference with visiting United Nations
Secretary General Ban Kimoon, French leader added that “all
the elements will be gatherd to vote a resolution within a
reasonable time, which means a brief (delay).”
announced that it will soon present to the Security Council
a draft resolution aimed at preparing the ground for UN
green light to oust Islamists insurgents from Mali’s
As violence in
Syria escalates, Hollande and Ban Kimoon called for a
political transition in the violence-ridden country “so that
the regime gives ground, Bashar al-Assad quits office and
political transition exists.”
The UN Secretary
General urged an end “the militarization of the conflict.”
militarization of the conflict will only worsen the
situation of the Syrians. The only option is the political
resolution of the conflict via a political dialogue by
Syrian people,” he said.
Gambia and Mali set to stop
Gambian migrants to Libya
BANJUL (Xinhua) -- The
government of Gambia has approached Mali to repatriate
Gambian migrants who are planning their trip to Libya for
greener pasture searching for better life, officials told
Xunhua on Tuesday.
youths are “traveling to the Sahara region voyaging to Libya
via Niger searching for greener pasture,” immigration source
said, “the government of Gambia is currently discussing with
Malian authority to send back any Gambian who wants to cross
the border to Niger to Libya.”
The journey cost
each migrant almost 500 U.S. dollars.
On Sept. 19, 2012,
immigration officers at Kerr Ayub Village Border Post
intercepted 40 Gambians based on the fact that they had the
intention of travelling to African countries and finally to
their arrival, our officers called on the passengers to
get down from the bus for screening, during which the
officers established that their intention was to travel
through the illegal journey,” he said.
According to the
immigration spokesman, seven of the would-be migrants are
from the West Coast Region, eight are from North Bank
Region, 14 from the Lower River Region, 10 from Central
River Region and one from the Upper River Region.
He said some of
them openly admitted that their intention was to travel to
Europe, with their first stopping point to have been Mali,
from where they will proceed to Niger, then to Libya, where
they will work to gather some money before finally leaving
is ongoing and if we establish that there is an agent on
the issue, we will prosecute the person,” immigration
spokeperson Ba Ensa Jawara said.
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