Connect with us

Latest News

Uighur woman held in Chinese detention camp tells of ‘inhuman torture’ | World News

Published

on

Warning: This article contains descriptions of rape from the beginning.

A Uighur woman was raped with iron bars and electric rods by Chinese police officers at a Xinjiang camp, a tribunal in London has heard.

Tursunay Ziyawudun, who gave evidence via video link and through an interpreter, broke down in tears as she recounted her story.

A guard tower and barbed wire fences at a facility in Xinjiang, China
Image:
A guard tower and barbed wire fences at a facility in Xinjiang, China. Pic: AP

“It’s very difficult for me to even think about that night. It was just a horrific time, a time when I was dead,” she said.

“That equipment is just horrible. The bleeding was non-stop.”

The 42-year-old also said she was physically raped three times during her detention at an internment camp.

“The horrific thing that happened is not only a simple rape – it is extreme, inhuman torture,” she said.

“They will also kick you, hit you on the wall. They bite your body just like dogs.”

Ms Ziyawudun was giving evidence on the second day of the independent tribunal, which has been set up to assess whether China‘s alleged human rights abuses against Uighur people constitute genocide.

“The public wants an answer to this question,” tribunal chairman Sir Geoffrey Nice told Sky News.

“If nobody else will provide it, we will.”

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Uighurs ‘treated worse than dogs’

The tribunal does not have the backing of the UK government and has no powers to sanction China, but organisers hope the evidence heard will compel the international community to take action.

“I think there’s a reasonable chance, better than usually with such tribunals,” said Sir Geoffrey, a British barrister who led the prosecution of ex-Serbian president Slobodan Milosevic and has worked with the International Criminal Court.

An estimated one million people, most of them Uighurs – a Muslim ethnic group living largely in the northwest Chinese province of Xinjiang – are thought to have been detained inside “re-education camps” in recent years.

Zumret Dawut, another Uighur woman, told the hearing she was detained in a camp for 62 days and was repeatedly forced to ingest unknown medication.

“It was a white tablet and we had to take it every day,” she said.

“To make sure we had taken it, the camp officials would put gloves on and insert their hands in our mouths to check we had swallowed.”

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Uighur torture victim: I was chained for 4 months

Ms Dawut, who also spoke via video link and through an interpreter, told the nine-person panel she lost 18kg during her detention and had blood taken every 15 days.

“We don’t know how much blood they’re taking from us because we’re inside a cell. We just put out our arms through a hole in the cell door and we don’t see how much blood they take out,” she said.

China has consistently denied claims of human rights abuses and says the camps were designed to offer Chinese language lessons and job support, as well as to combat religious extremism.

China experienced a wave of Xinjiang-related terror attacks in 2016.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

‘Time for UK to call Uighur treatment genocide’

In April, the UK parliament passed a motion that declared the Uighur people are being subjected to genocide.

The US, Canada and the Netherlands have made similar declarations.

But the British government has always declined to get involved, much to human rights campaigners’ frustration.

“Nobody does genocide-denial better than the UK,” Luke de Pulford, coordinator of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC), told Sky News.

“Our policy has been to defer to the international judicial system. That system does not function – China blocks any route to a court.

“So our policy on genocide is inoperable and immoral. In that context, the UK has to be participating in this and taking its conclusions seriously.”

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

UK ‘will not turn a blind eye’ on Uighurs

The Foreign Office says the UK’s policy on genocide determination has not stopped it from taking “robust action” and leading “international efforts to hold China to account for its human rights violations in Xianjiang”.

It cited measures announced in January to stop UK companies trading with Chinese firms connected to forced labour, and said Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab had regularly raised concerns with China’s foreign minister.

Despite repeated invitations to participate, the Chinese embassy in London has not commented on the hearing, which is due to hold another four-day session in September.

Sky News has contacted the Chinese embassy for comment.

Source link

Latest News

COVID-19: President Jair Bolsonaro in trouble as Brazil’s COVID crisis inquiry becomes box office viewing | World News

Published

on

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro loves meeting people; he can’t get enough of it, he travels the country looking to shake hands and kiss babies.

He likes doing interviews, he’ll talk about subjects varied and important to him.

There is just one caveat – he hates independent journalists, isn’t too keen on foreign ones, and won’t talk to anyone who doesn’t love him or agree with him on everything – “Trump of the Tropics” pretty much says it all.

President Jair Bolsonaro has been widely criticised for his handling of the pandemic
Image:
President Bolsonaro has been widely criticised for his handling of the pandemic

Over the past year, I’ve travelled around Brazil attempting to speak to him and I have singularly failed.

His people are so determined to stop me from asking their boss a simple question – or worse – seeing him explode into a storm of foul-mouthed invective, that my slimmest chance of a breakthrough via a temporary accreditation badge has now been revoked.

We can’t get near him for now.

But in reality, we are not very important, what is important though is a parliamentary inquiry into his handling of the pandemic.

It’s important, and worse for Mr Bolsonaro, he knows he is in trouble.

The parliamentary inquiry has gained even more traction after the country recorded more than 500,000 deaths from COVID-19.

Anti-Bolsonaro protesters march in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Image:
Anti-Bolsonaro protesters march in Sao Paulo, Brazil

It’s become absolute box office and Senate TV is now required viewing here in Brazil.

It’s streamed all day as witness after witness allege the government failed to buy vaccines, promoted ineffective COVID cures and neglected to source adequate oxygen supplies.

The critics of the government are not just confined to opposition politicians.

Gilmar Mendes says he warned the president of the impending pandemic in March
Image:
Gilmar Mendes says he warned the president of the impending pandemic in March last year

Here in the capital Brasilia, I spoke to one federal supreme court judge who met with Mr Bolsonaro in March last year.

Gilmar Mendes told me he warned the president about the impending pandemic and offered his help and support.

He described the president as a man in crisis.

General Elieser Girao says any inquiry into the government's handling of the crisis is politically motivated
Image:
General Elieser Girao says any inquiry into the government’s handling of the crisis is politically motivated

“It seemed to me in that moment this was a man, I even said, a little tortured by the facts. Very emotional, very emotional,” Mr Mendes said.

“He said that the economy was doing well, and that this pandemic was now coming, and that social isolation was a poison.”

Mr Mendes said the president’s main concern was, and still is, the economy, and he prioritised it accordingly.

“So he prioritised his concerns, maybe he generated much more around the economic issue, as [this] was reflected in the organisation of the government.”

Brazil has recorded over 500,000 deaths from COVID-19 and the pending parliamentary enquiry will look at Jair Bolsonaro's handling of the enquiry
Image:
The parliamentary inquiry will look at Jair Bolsonaro’s handling of the pandemic

President Bolsonaro is a divisive figure in Brazil who plays entirely to his supporter base.

At his last event, in Sao Paulo, he turned up at the front of a motorbike rally.

He resolutely denies the dangers of COVID, fought against lockdowns and masks, and promoted drugs like hydroxychloroquine made famous by Donald Trump.

During a Facebook live last week, he made the argument for herd immunity saying it is “more effective against the disease than the vaccine”.

He openly advocated for exposure to the virus and downplayed the efficacy of the vaccines.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

‘Bolsonaro out!’ – Protesters descend on Sao Paulo.

These comments came in the week scientists in Brazil warned the country’s death toll could eclipse the United States – currently the highest in the world with more than 602,000 deaths.

In my quest to speak to the president, I went to visit one of his closest political allies, former soldier now congressman General Elieser Girao Monteiro Filho.

When we arrived he was busily planning the latest presidential visit, this time to the general’s home state, Rio Grande do Norte.

He oozed pride as he pointed out the helicopter route to two events with a laser pen on his map, and then he proudly showed me pictures of him and the president, blown up into posters adorning the walls of his small office.

Like the president, General Girao, as he is known, has had COVID-19.

Unlike the president, he has been vaccinated, wears masks, and sanitises his hands.

Still, he says any inquiry into the government’s handling of the crisis is politically motivated and says one man – Mr Bolsonaro – cannot be blamed for everything.

'Fora Bolsonaro', meaning 'Bolsonaro Out', has been a common message on the streets of Sao Paulo
Image:
‘Fora Bolsonaro’, meaning ‘Bolsonaro Out’, has been a common message on the streets of Sao Paulo

“Unfortunately COVID in Brazil, specifically in Brazil, was transformed into a political war and this political war, unfortunately, is leading to many people not getting a prescription for the medicine that immediately treats the virus,” he told me.

There is no such medicine. I assume he is referring to the president’s hydroxychloroquine treatment plan, widely debunked around the world.

Some say Brazil is in the midst of its third wave, others argue the first wave just never ended.

Activists display a cloth covered with small coffins and the Portuguese word for genocide outside Congress in protest of the high death toll from COVID-19. Pic AP
Image:
Activists display a cloth covered with small coffins and the Portuguese word for genocide outside Congress in protest of the high death toll from COVID-19. Pic AP

But even though Brazil’s infection rates are still high, lockdowns are still not regarded as the solution by this government.

“I believe the president acted correctly when he reacted [in opposition] to the closures. Lockdowns have not been successful anywhere in the world.”

Brasilia is a man-made city with wide boulevards and stylised buildings designed and built in the 1950s by Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer.

Follow the Daily podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Spreaker

It’s been described as a city of clean lines, rational planning and space. It feels homogenised and un-Brazilian compared to the throbbing atmospheric cities of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo.

But Brasilia is now home to one of the most important inquiries in Brazil’s recent history, and its conclusions could have consequences that change the direction of this huge country.

Next year there are elections – and the recent street protests across the country, and the latest polls showing Mr Bolsonaro’s popularity plummeting, suggest he’s in trouble.

Source link

Continue Reading

Latest News

Saskatchewan: More than 750 unmarked graves found on site of former indigenous school in Canada | World News

Published

on

Investigators have found more than 750 unmarked graves at the site of a former indigenous school in Canada.

The discovery of the 751 graves follows the news that the remains of 215 children were found at another school nearby.

Bobby Cameron, chief of the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous First Nations, said: “We are treating this as a crime”.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaking after the 215 children's remains were found near British Colombia.
Image:
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaking after the 215 children’s remains were found near British Colombia.

He warned how he expected more graves to be found on residential school grounds in Canada.

And Mr Cameron vowed not to stop “until we find all the bodies”, describing the tragedy as a “crime against humanity, an assault on First Nations.”

The 751 graves were found at the Marieval Indian Residential School, open from 1899 until 1997, where Cowessess is now located.

They were marked in the past – but the markers were removed by people operating the school, said Chief Cadmusn Delmore, of the Cowessess First Nation.

The reserve is about situated about 87 miles east of Regina, the capital of Saskatchewan, in western Canada.

The 215 children’s remains – some as young as three – were found buried on the former site of Canada’s largest indigenous school, near Kamloops, British Colombia, in May.

Source link

Continue Reading

Latest News

UEFA abolishes away goals rule after more than half a century | UK News

Published

on

Europe’s football governing body UEFA has abolished the away goals rule for all of its club competitions from next season.

All ties that are level on aggregate at the end of the second leg will now go to extra time.

Paris Saint-Germain’s victory over Bayern Munich in last season’s Champions League quarter-finals will go down in history as the last away goals result in the tournament before the rule change.

The rule, introduced in 1965, has led to some dramatic moments in recent years, including Tottenham’s stoppage-time success over Ajax in the 2019 Champions League semi-final.

UEFA said away goals would also no longer be a separating criteria when looking at matches between two or more sides level on points in the group stage of a competition.

Paris St Germain's victory over Bayern Munich in last year's Champions League will go down as the last win on away goals
Image:
Paris Saint-Germain’s victory over Bayern Munich in last year’s Champions League will go down as the last win on away goals in the tournament

However, the number of away goals scored in all group matches could be used as an additional separating criteria if required.

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin said as the end of the rule was announced: “The away goals rule has been an intrinsic part of UEFA competitions since it was introduced in 1965.

“However, the question of its abolition has been debated at various UEFA meetings over the last few years. Although there was no unanimity of views, many coaches, fans and other football stakeholders have questioned its fairness and have expressed a preference for the rule to be abolished.”

Mr Ceferin added that the away goals rule had begun to go against its original purpose and was dissuading home teams from attacking.

This because the sides would fear conceding a goal at their own stadium would give their opponent a crucial advantage.

He continued: “There is also criticism of the unfairness, especially in extra-time, of obliging the home team to score twice when the away team has scored.

“It is fair to say that home advantage is nowadays no longer as significant as it once was.”

UEFA has cited statistics since the mid-1970s which showed how the gap between home and away wins had reduced.

It talked about better pitch quality, standardised pitch sizes, and even video assistance referees (VAR) as factors in the decline of home advantage.



Source link

Continue Reading

Trending