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In December 2021, I had the chance to talk with a bright 14-year-old girl named Maria Tunbonat, a fifth-grader in a state school in Tarakan, North Kalimantan. Her father, Ayub, also joined the video call as we spoke about her school and her…
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‘The lack of consequences for the crimes committed in Tigray has made it easier for warring parties to commit further atrocities.’

A full year has passed since Eritrean government forces massacred Tigrayan civilians in Ethiopia’s historical town of Axum. But survivors of the massacre and of other atrocities in Tigray are still no closer to accessing justice and redress – an…
Priest on his way to church in Axum, Tigray region, Ethiopia on January 25, 2011.
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Despite its official condemnation of the coup, Japan continues to move towards normalizing ties with the junta

Since the February 1 military coup in Myanmar, the junta’s security forces have killed nearly 1,300 people, arrested more than 10,000, and continue to detain nearly 7,400. The junta-controlled courts have sentenced 65 people to death, including 2…
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“Nothing about us without us” – that was the call from the indigenous rights advocate Ghazali Ohorella from the Alifuru people in the Maluku Islands, Indonesia during a panel at the climate summit in Glasgow.  This plea was echoed by many…
Georgina Wabano and her mother cooking traditional food for school children in Peawanuck, ON, December 18, 2019. : © 2019 Daron Donahue
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On September 3, at least 130 Malay Sunni vigilantes attacked an Ahmadiyah mosque in Balai Harapan village, Sintang regency, West Kalimantan. The attack occurred after Friday prayers, during which the imam at a nearby Sunni mosque, Mochammad Hedi…
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Myanmar’s Coup Built on Years of Failed Accountability

On August 1, Myanmar’s commander-in-chief, Sr. Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, dressed in civilian clothes, made a televised speech six months to the day after leading a coup that thrust the country back under brutal military rule. Amid claims of establishing a…
Anti-coup protesters run from teargas deployed by the police during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar, March 1, 2021.
News

August 25 is Observed as ‘Genocide Remembrance Day,’ but It Is Not Just the Story of a Single Day

Kabir, a Rohingya refugee, fled his village in western Myanmar’s Rakhine state on August 25, 2017. But this was not the first time he had been forced to flee, nor the first time Myanmar soldiers had burned down his home. Nor is Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh…
Rohingya refugees walk through rice fields after crossing the border from Myanmar into Palang Khali, Bangladesh, October 19, 2017.
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Brave activists in Myanmar are still resisting the coup -- at great cost. An international campaign to ban arms sales and target gas sales could help.

Six months after the Myanmar military’s February 1 coup, some things are now clear. Most apparent is that there is no limit on the violence and repression the military under the commander-in-chief, Sr. Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, is willing to use to hold…
Anti-coup protesters hold a banner that reads "What are these? We are Yangon residents!" as they march during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar on Tuesday April 27, 2021.
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In August 2005, I visited Carmel Budiardjo, then an 80-year-old human rights campaigner, in her London townhouse. We talked on the second floor, which was also the office for Tapol, the human rights organization that she helped set up in…
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Climate action plans have to include measures to redress women disproportionately affected by deforestation and plantation expansion.

On a rainy day in April 2018, I rode a small speedboat along the Kapuas River in West Kalimantan province, Indonesia, headed for three tidal swamp villages, whose residents had protested against the expansion of oil palm plantations on their farmland and…
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Four months have passed since a military coup in Myanmar. Four months of protests against the junta that overthrew a newly elected government and four months of shooting peaceful protesters. Four months of security forces arbitrarily arresting…
A police officer stands in front of anti-coup protesters in Yangon, Myanmar, February 19, 2021.
News

But the International Community Should Do Much More to Ensure that the Refugees Can Safely Return to Myanmar

In late May, thousands of Rohingya refugees whom Bangladesh authorities had relocated to remote Bhasan Char island broke out of their shelters during a visit by United Nations representatives. “We don’t want to live here,” they chanted.…
A man climbs through barbed wire fencing at a Rohingya refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, as a massive fire swept through the camps on March 22, 2021.
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With GE15 on the horizon, there is a grave risk that arrests will continue to rise. Respect for freedom of speech in Malaysia is in free fall - a decline illustrated by two recent arrests. On the evening of Friday, April 23, seven police…
Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin attending parliament session at parliament lower house in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Monday, July 13, 2020.
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Update: Shortly after this was published, the UN Security Council issued its third statement on Myanmar. Myanmar police enforcing the military junta’s crackdown on protesters stopped an ambulance in March, dragged four paramedics out of…
The UN Security Council holds a meeting on November 20, 2019, at United Nations headquarters in New York.
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Tokyo's Passive Diplomacy Will Only Embolden the Tatmadaw, Which Continues to Commit Grave Abuses with Impunity

Since the Myanmar military seized power on February 1, the Japanese government has expressed its “grave concerns” over the coup. It has called on the Myanmar military, known as the Tatmadaw, to “swiftly restore Myanmar’s democratic…
Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi (left), Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga (center), and Finance Minister Taro Aso (right) attend a Cabinet meeting in Tokyo on February 24, 2021.
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Every morning, there is a moment of anxiety as I check to see what has happened overnight in Myanmar. Who has been arrested? Who has been killed? Are they someone I know? Since the Myanmar military seized power on February 1, millions have taken to…
Anti-coup protesters stage a sit-in demonstration, Mandalay, Myanmar, February 24, 2021.
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The death toll keeps rising in Myanmar as security forces open fire on peaceful protesters.  Yet the demonstrations across the country continue. Masses of people in Myanmar have made it clear that they reject the military’s February 1 coup…
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