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Speaking in New Delhi on April 25, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen referred to India as a “vibrant democracy,” sharing common values and interests with the European Union. But these cliches, repeated by rote by European leaders…
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (right) welcomes Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi
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The upcoming U.S.-ASEAN special summit stands in jarring juxtaposition to last year’s “Summit for Democracy” — to which most ASEAN states didn’t merit an invitation.

The Biden administration on April 16 announced that the White House will host a special summit with members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) on May 12. Invitees include Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, an unrepentant and…
Flags of member countries fly at the ASEAN Secretariat in Jakarta, Indonesia, April 22, 2021.
News

Egypt, Lebanon, and Tunisia Should Ensure Access to Legal Gender Recognition

Transgender people, whose assigned gender at birth does not match their gender identity, face a grim reality in much of the Middle East and North Africa region, including daunting obstacles to legal gender recognition. To get a better sense of…
The transgender pride flag.
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Betting on ASEAN’S Fruitless Diplomacy Undermines International Action

Days after the Myanmar military coup on February 1, 2021, the Japanese and Australian governments publicly “confirmed” they would “closely coordinate together regarding the situation in Myanmar.” Since then, they have repeatedly expressed “grave…
Demonstrators in Yangon protest the military coup in Myanmar
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A notable achievement since Tunisia’s adoption of Law No. 58 on the Elimination of Violence Against Women in 2017 is that it has broken the taboo on speaking about domestic violence. Yet, while spousal violence has received significant attention, it…
A woman walking on the street in Zarziss, Tunisia.
News

The US Military's Shameful Failure to Protect Civilians

Eight years ago, it looked like the U.S. military was making progress in reducing the harm its operations caused to civilians. The counterinsurgency strategy in Afghanistan meant winning the hearts and minds of the population. Lessons from the Vietnam…
Pentagon building
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Japan’s defence ministry claims the program, which includes combat training, will inspire change from within. That’s not going to happen.

Japan was one of the first governments to issue a statement after the Myanmar military staged a coup on February 1 last year.  Within hours of events unfolding in Naypyitaw, the Japanese leadership expressed “grave concern” and…
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On October 28, Egypt’s Interior Ministry released a slick, heavily produced video showcasing a new state-of-the-art prison mega-complex. The Wadi El Natrun Correctional and Rehabilitation Center complex is supposed to replace 12 prisons that currently…
A satellite photograph of Scorpion Prison taken in September 2016. Inmates suffer abuses in secret and are denied most access to the outside world. Satellite imagery
News

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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A New York Times exposé on a previously undisclosed attack on dozens of noncombatants in Syria is indicative of DOD’s impunity.

Pentagon leadership cannot – or will not – fix its civilian casualties problem. It’s long past time for Congress to step in. On November 17, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said, “we are committed to protecting civilians and getting this right...We have…
A view of the Capitol Building in Washington October 15, 2013.
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This week, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will give a keynote address at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute’s Sydney Dialogue, along with Prime Minister Scott Morrison. The dialogue is billed as a “world-first summit for emerging, critical…
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By reforming its own system, Egypt can influence positive changes in other countries in the region and lead the way for clear and accessible legal gender recognition mechanisms.

August 26 should have been a day of celebration for Ezz Eldin, a 26-year-old transgender man, but it ended in tragedy. He bled to death after he was prematurely discharged following a gender-affirmation surgery in an underground clinic…
The transgender pride flag.
News
Shortly after Denmark began telling Syrian refugees that parts of Syria are "safe" and stripped them of their temporary protected status, I talked to a 31-year-old refugee who voluntarily returned to Syria from Jordan in December 2020. He told me…
A streetview of destroyed buildings in a city
News

The SC Order is Welcome, But More Needs to Be Done for People with Disabilities

I vividly remember the first time visited a mental hospital in Mumbai. In one room, dozens of people lay on the dirty floor, the stench of urine overpowering the air. The women wore shabby green uniforms, their heads shaved because of the…
Women with perceived or actual psychosocial disabilities at a mental hospital in Mumbai
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Significant Victory Requires Holistic Approach to Implementation

I vividly remember the first time visited a mental hospital in Mumbai. In one room, dozens of people lay on the dirty floor, the stench of urine overpowering the air. The women wore shabby green…
Women lying on the ground in a room.
News

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

The Egyptian government has deliberately let a former presidential candidate languish behind bars without proper medical care.

On July 25, the family of 69-year-old Abd al-Moniem Abu al-Fotouh, the detained leader of the Strong Egypt Party, said he had suffered symptoms resembling a heart attack the night before while in solitary confinement in Cairo’s notorious…
Egyptian security forces have been involved in systematic abuses such as enforced disappearance and torture and have used abusive counterterrorism laws and measures to crush peaceful dissent. Egyptian security forces stand guard outside one of the entranc
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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