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    Military takeover of Rio police stirs dictatorship ghosts
    24.02.18
    AFP

    The ghosts of Brazil's dictatorship are stirring in the wake of President Michel Temer's order for the army to take over policing in Rio de Janeiro. There's no direct comparison between the Rio operation and the 1964 coup that brought two decades of military rule to Latin America's biggest country. In this case, the military isn't overturning a president -- it's just taking charge of Rio state's security situation after months of escalating crime. But the echoes have been loud enough to force the government into extraordinary denials. "I'm going to tell you how many marks I give the idea of a military coup: zero," Temer told Radio...

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    UN wants prosecutions for S,Sudan war crimes
    23.02.18
    AFP

    A UN rights commission in South Sudan said Friday there was sufficient evidence to charge at least 41 senior officers and officials with war crimes and crimes against humanity. South Sudan's four-year-old civil war has been characterised by extreme brutality and attacks on civilians. But no high-ranking officials have been held to account, despite African Union (AU) promises to establish a special court to try alleged crimes. "The court could be set up straight away and the prosecutor could begin working on indictments," said Yasmin Sooka, chairperson of the UN Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan. "Under the...

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    Fates vary of foreign jihadists held in Iraq and Syria
    23.02.18
    AFP

    Iraq and Syria's Kurds have netted foreign jihadists by the thousands but while the former is expediting trials, the latter would rather send them home. A Baghdad court on Monday sentenced Frenchwoman Melina Boughedir to seven months in prison, a term she had already served by the time she was tried. The authorities only found her guilty of entering Iraq illegally and she will soon be able to return to France, a country which was one of the Islamic State group's main suppliers of foreign fighters. The 27-year-old is one among the thousands of foreigners suspected of having fought for or supported jihadist groups, more or less...

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    Armenian 'genocide': the disputed massacres of 1915-17
    23.02.18
    AFP

    Armenia and Turkey are at odds over whether the World War I massacres and deportations of Armenians by their Ottoman rulers should be described as genocide. Armenians say up to 1.5 million of their kin were killed between 1915 and 1917, and have long sought international recognition that this was genocide. Turkey rejects the term and puts the number of dead at between 300,000 and 500,000. It says what happened was civil conflict and a collective tragedy. Around 20 countries and some parliaments have voted through laws or resolutions recognising there was genocide, to the fury of Ankara. The Dutch lower house on...

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    Turkey raps Dutch diplomat over Armenian 'genocide' vote
    23.02.18
    AFP

    Turkey on Friday summoned the Dutch charge d'affaires to condemn the vote by lawmakers in the Netherlands to recognise as "genocide" the massacre of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire. The Dutch diplomat was called to the foreign ministry in Ankara, which "condemned" the parliament's vote, a ministry official told AFP. Thursday's vote saw MPs voting 142 to 3 in favour of the proposal that the parliament refer to the massacre as "the Armenian genocide". Armenians have long sought recognition that some 1.5 million of their people were killed in a genocidal campaign in World War I by Ottoman forces -- ordered by Minister of War Enver Pasha and...

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    UN wants prosecutions for South Sudan war crimes
    23.02.18
    AFP

    A UN rights commission in South Sudan said Friday there was sufficient evidence to charge at least 41 senior officers and officials with war crimes and crimes against humanity. South Sudan's four-year-old civil war has been characterised by extreme brutality and attacks on civilians. But no high-ranking officials have been held to account, despite African Union (AU) promises to establish a special court to try alleged crimes. "The court could be set up straight away and the prosecutor could begin working on indictments," said Yasmin Sooka, chairperson of the UN Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan. "Under the...

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    UN wants prosecutions for South Sudan war crimes
    23.02.18
    AFP

    A UN rights commission in South Sudan said Friday there was sufficient evidence to charge at least 41 senior officers and officials with war crimes and crimes against humanity. South Sudan's four-year-old civil war has been characterised by extreme brutality and attacks on civilians. But no high-ranking officials have been held to account, despite African Union (AU) promises to establish a special court to try alleged crimes. "The court could be set up straight away and the prosecutor could begin working on indictments," said Yasmin Sooka, chairperson of the UN Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan. "Under the...

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    Turkey summons Dutch charge d'affaires over Armenian 'genocide' vote
    23.02.18
    AFP

    Turkey summoned the Dutch charge d'affaires on Friday to condemn the vote by lawmakers in the Netherlands to recognise the massacre of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire as "genocide", an official said. The Dutch diplomat was called to the foreign ministry in Ankara, which "condemned" the parliament's vote, a ministry official told AFP. The Dutch lower house on Thursday voted 142 to 3 in favour of the proposal "that parliament in no uncertain terms speak about the Armenian genocide". Armenians have long sought recognition that some 1.5 million of their people were killed in a genocidal campaign in World War I by Ottoman forces --...

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    Yazidi survivor won't return to Iraq for fear of new 'genocide'
    23.02.18
    AFP

    Farida Abbas Khalaf, one of thousands of Yazidi women abducted, raped and brutalised by Islamic State group fighters, says the jihadists' departure has not made it safe to return to Iraq. "Everything is still the same. The same people who joined (IS) are still in those neighbourhoods. How can we return and trust them again?" Khalaf said in an interview with AFP this week. "Who will guarantee that genocide will not happen again, by perpetrators using another name?" she asked, speaking through a translator. Khalaf was 18 when IS fighters arrived in her once peaceful village of Kocho in Iraq's northern Sinjar region on August 3,...

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    Dutch MPs recognise Armenian 'genocide'
    22.02.18
    AFP

    Dutch lawmakers Thursday overwhelmingly voted in favour of recognising the early 1900s massacre of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire as "genocide", in a move likely to worsen already-strained ties with Turkey. "The motion is accepted," parliamentary speaker Khadija Arib announced after the lower house voted 142 to 3 in favour of the proposal "that parliament in no uncertain terms speak about the Armenian genocide". It also agreed to send a cabinet representative to Yerevan in April for the commemorations of the killings and every five years afterwards. Armenians have long sought international recognition for the 1915-1917 killings...

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    Turkey 'strongly' condemns Dutch MPs' recognising Armenian 'genocide'
    22.02.18
    AFP

    Turkey responded firmly on Thursday to the recognition by Dutch lawmakers of the early 1900s massacre of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire as "genocide", a term Ankara has long rejected for describing the mass killings. "We strongly condemn the decision taken today by the chamber of deputies of the Netherlands to recognise as genocide the events of 1915," the Turkish foreign ministry said in a statement. Armenians have long sought international recognition for the 1915-1917 killings in the Ottoman era as genocide, which they say left some 1.5 million of their people dead. But Turkey -- the Ottoman Empire's successor state -- argues...

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    Dutch MPs set to recognise Armenian 'genocide'
    21.02.18
    AFP

    The Dutch parliament is set to adopt a motion Thursday formally recognising the 1915 massacres in Armenia as "genocide", in a vote likely to ratchet up already strained relations with Turkey. The Christian Union (CU) party, a conservative junior coalition partner in Prime Minister Mark Rutte's four-party government, "will propose two motions to the lower house with the support of the coalition parties," CU MP Joel Voordewind said. The first motion proposes "that parliament in no uncertain terms speak about the Armenian genocide," Voordewind told AFP. The second motion will ask the cabinet "to send a representative to Yerevan on April...

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