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New Measures to Address Abuses in Chinese Region Insufficient

The United Kingdom and Canada made coordinated announcements this week to help prevent British and Canadian businesses from being complicit in, or profiting from, human rights violations in China’s Xinjiang region. The move follows growing calls…
People work amidst massive piles of cotton in China's Xinjiang province. 
News

Concerns About Equal Access to the Benefit and Fresh Fears Over the ‘Five-Week Wait’

A bleak Covid-19 winter is coming. Cases are soaring and the UK government has imposed a further one-month lockdown in England. The lockdown could push more than 2 million people into furlough, or temporary leave from work. Hundreds of thousands more…
Citizens Advice operates the “Help to Claim” service, which helps people apply for Universal Credit online. 
News

Ruling a Victory for Claimants’ Rights, but Problems Remain

When Rachelle, 35, a single working mother in London, received her first Universal Credit payment in March, she had a panic attack. It was far short of what she needed to pay the rent and support her two children, one of whom has a disability. “I am…
A branch of the UK employment social security agency where claimants seek assistance with their benefits, Newcastle, March 4, 2020.
News

Missed Opportunity to Affect Much Needed Reforms

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) on Wednesday approved a US$500 million loan for a crucial piece of a network of pipelines owned largely by the Azerbaijani government that will transport Azerbaijani gas to Europe. The bank made…
News

Hollande Should Call for Release of Imprisoned Activists, Journalists

In Paris this week on an official visit, Azerbaijan’s autocratic President Ilham Aliyev has already scored one photo op. Anyone reading yesterday’s Azeri media could see dozens of photos of Aliyev posing with leaders of top French companies, including…
Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev (L) shakes hands with his French counterpart Francois Hollande as they visit a local French school under construction in Baku, May 11, 2014.
News

Baku Responds by Quitting the Transparency Group

The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), an international coalition promoting better governance of resource-rich countries, has suspended Azerbaijan for failing to ease its crackdown on civil society groups. Following years of…
News

Transparency Group Should Urge Civil Society Reforms

In one month, the board of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), an international multi-stakeholder group, will decide whether to suspend the natural resource-rich government of Azerbaijan for failing to comply with EITI standards.…
2016-10-eca-azerbaijan-eiti
News
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, who will be in London next week to pitch foreign investment, is mired in political controversy at home. The corruption scandal involving the government-owned 1 Malaysia Development Berhad fund refuses to…
Malaysia's (L-R) Prime Minister Najib Razak and King Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah wave Malaysian national flags during National Day celebrations in Kuala Lumpur, August 31, 2015.
News
Over the last year, reporting about FIFA, football’s scandal-plagued governing body, has focused on arrests, corruption, and worker rights abuses in the upcoming World Cup host countries, Russia and Qatar. So today’s news that…
News
Lately it’s hard to avoid having “unprecedented” and Azerbaijan in the same sentence because of the government’s ever-harsher crackdown on critics. But today’s Azerbaijan news is unprecedented for another reason. Finally one of its international partners…
News
A much-anticipated government report officially acknowledges what Edward Snowden revealed to the world many months ago: the UK has been intercepting communications en masse. But rather than condemn the widespread snooping, the report endorses the so-…
News
Today Julian Assange, the Wikileaks publisher, begins his third year confined in the Ecuadorean embassy in London. He fled there, receiving political asylum, when Sweden sought his extradition to answer sexual assault allegations. Although both Assange…
News
Today, Facebook issued its first transparency report, surprising no one in saying that the US government has made more requests for user data than any other country. US surveillance practices are only one of the reasons the country leads the pack:…