Jun 11 2019

Six In The Morning Tuesday 11 June 2019


North Korea: Hundreds of public execution sites identified, says report

A South Korean NGO says it has identified 318 sites in North Korea that have been used by the government to carry out public executions.

The Transitional Justice Working Group interviewed 610 North Korean defectors over four years for its report.

It documented decades of killings, for offences ranging from stealing a cow to watching South Korean TV.

Public executions took place near rivers, fields, markets, schools, and sports grounds, the rights group said.

Crowds of 1,000 or more would gather to watch these executions, the NGO said in its report, “Mapping the fate of the dead”, released on Tuesday.

Sudanese doctors say dozens of people raped during sit-in attack

Hospitals in Khartoum record more than 70 cases of rape in aftermath of attack on protest

Doctors believe paramilitaries carried out more than 70 rapes during an attack on a protest camp in Khartoum, the capital of Sudan, a week ago.

More than 100 people were killed and as many as 700 injured in the attack last Monday on a sit-in and clashes afterwards, as paramilitaries from the Rapid Support Forces spread through the city to quell sporadic unrest.

Harrowing details of rapes by the RSF have emerged in recent days despite restrictions on communications in Sudan, but the extent of the sexual violence has remained unknown.

Twenty years after the end of the Kosovo war, survivors of Racak massacre remember their loved ones

The anniversary of a war that saw 15,000 killed and around 2.7 million displaced is marked by pomp and ceremony with international statesmen likely to attend, writes Kim Sengupta

The shooting began just before five in the afternoon. Ram Shabani remembers the time when his life changed forever. He recalls hearing the muzzein’s call from the mosque drifting over the loudspeaker just when he felt he was going to pass out from fatigue and the prolonged beating he had received.

“We were with our hands on our heads for a very long time. I was in real pain and did not think I would last any longer.

“Then I heard the prayer – it was such a peaceful sound, but suddenly there was firing all around me, people were screaming and falling, dying around me,” he recalls.

Nicaragua frees political prisoners with suspect amnesty law

Nicaragua’s government has released 50 people arrested during a year of anti-regime protests. However, the new amnesty law also protects police and supporters of the government who assaulted demonstrators in 2018.

On Monday, Nicaragua’s government released 50 more people jailed for their roles in protests during months of political upheaval in 2018.

A new law extends protections to “people who have not been investigated, who find themselves under investigation” or in criminal processes and “complying with their sentences.”

However, it also bans freed political prisoners from launching further anti-government protests.

Repatriate or reject: What countries are doing with IS group families

Since the fall of the Islamic State group’s so-called “caliphate” in March, the international community has been torn over what to do with the families of foreign jihadists captured or killed in Syria and Iraq.

Some 12,000 foreigners from as many as 40 countries  4,000 women and 8,000 children  are currently stranded, mainly in Al-Hol camp in northeastern Syria.

The Kurdish authorities are pressing for them to be returned to their countries of origin.

Here are several examples of how countries around the world are dealing with the issue:

Russia, Kosovo, first

Nearly 4,500 Russian citizens went abroad to fight alongside the IS group and it was the first to organise returns over a year ago.

A Russian journalist was arrested on drug charges. The backlash has blindsided the Kremlin

Updated 0507 GMT (1307 HKT) June 11, 2019

At first glance, the arrest of investigative journalist Ivan Golunov seemed to be the latest in a string of attacks on the free press in Russia. The reporter was brought up last week on what to many appeared to be a fabricated drugs charge.

But the response to his detainment took the Kremlin — and Russian society — by surprise.
For starters, Golunov’s arrest prompted an outpouring of journalistic solidarity. Over the weekend, Russian reporters took turns staging solo protests, lining up to hold placards outside the Moscow branch of Russia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs. Those single-person pickets — which do not require a permit — continued into Monday evening.