Global Justice Center Blog

GJC Weekly News Roundup

Monsoon Rains Hit Rohingya Refugee Camps

Monsoon rains have hit the camps housing hundreds of thousands Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh. So far, these rains have caused the death of one child and have destroyed hundreds of makeshift shelters. The UN refugee agency UNHCR reported that “large areas of the camp were underwater”, leading to 21 landslides. The rains will potentially impact upwards of 200,000 Rohingya refugees who are huddled in camps along Bangladesh’s eastern border. The monsoon season usually lasts until October.

No Mention of Reproductive Rights at G7 Development Meeting

The G7 Development Ministers’ Meetings in Whistler, Canada failed to mention reproductive rights in their concluding declarations. This occurred despite the fact the focus of the event is “the empowerment of women and girls.” Although stronger language was used at the ministerial held last week, with ministers calling for access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services, softer language was used at the declarations due to the U.S. delegation being present. This censorship is also due to Trump’s reestablishment of the Global Gag Rule.

Myanmar Willing to Take Back Rohingya Refugees, Official Says

Myanmar’s national security advisor U Thaung Tun announced the country is willing to take back all 700,000 Rohingya Muslim refugees who have fled to Bangladesh if they volunteer to return. This was declared in response to the question of whether the situation in Myanmar’s Rakhine state could trigger the use of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) framework of the United Nations. The R2P framework was adopted for nations to agree to protect their own populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. Tun argued that, “there is no war going on, so it’s not war crimes.” He also argued for clear evidence of crimes against humanity.

Boat Sinks, Killing Scores of Migrants

The Defense Ministry of Tunisia announced at least 46 migrants were killed and 67 rescued after their boat sank off of the country’s coast. One of the worst migrant boat accidents in recent years, the boat was packed with migrants from Tunisia and other African countries. Human traffickers have started using Tunisia as a launchpad for migrants heading to Europe due to the tightened control of Libya’s coast with the aid of armed groups.

Supreme Court Dismisses Decision Allowing Undocumented Teen an Abortion

The Supreme Court dismissed a lower court’s decision that allowed an undocumented immigrant teen to receive an abortion. Siding with the Trump Administration, the Supreme Court directed the lower court to dismiss the teen’s individual claim seeking access to abortion services as moot. The teenager was able to terminate her pregnancy before the high court became involved. The Supreme Court refused the Trump Administration’s request asking that the ACLU lawyers representing the girl be disciplined for their actions.

Saudi Arabia Issues Driving Licenses to Women

Saudi Arabia has issued driving licenses to women for the first time in decades, which comes just before the ban on female drivers is lifted. Rights groups in the kingdom have campaigned against the law that requires women to seek male permission for various decisions. It is expected that another 2,000 women in the kingdom will join the other licensed drivers. The lifting of the driving ban was announced last September and is part of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s program to modernize certain aspects of Saudi Arabia’s society.


Photo Credit: John Owens (VOA) / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain

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