Rights activists in Mozambique marched through the capital Maputo to protest a colonial era law still included in new legislation that allows rapists to go unpunished if they marry their victims. A clause sees convicted rapists given a five-year suspended sentence if they marry their victims and stipulates that the perpetrator should stay married to the victim for at least five years. At the protest, a young woman dressed in a blood-spattered wedding gown led a group of about 300 mostly female protesters as they marched to parliament.
Source: Al Jazeera and ICNC firstname.lastname@example.org
By recording their act of violence against a TV executive, Ukrainian nationalist politicians delivered a propaganda coup to their enemies in Russia, who claim that mob rule prevails in Kiev. Hours after the original video was uploaded to YouTube by the Svoboda party spokesman, it was deleted, but not before copies were made by pro-Russia activists who used the clip as evidence that Kiev was now run by the mob rule of dangerous vigilantes. Journalists, activists and the new prime minister, Arseniy Yatsenyuk, reacted with disgust to the self-documented assault.
Source: Robert Mackey, NY Times; ICNC email@example.com
As many as 700 people were sentenced to death in Iran last year, according to UN estimates. Most were charged with drug-related crimes and belonged to ethnic minorities, new studies show. “Despite signs of openness with the election of President (Hassan) Rohani a year ago, the human rights situation in Iran has dramatically deteriorated,” said Taimoor Aliassi, UN representative of the Association of Human Rights in Kurdistan of Iran.
Source: Isolda Agazzi, IPS News; ICNC firstname.lastname@example.org
“Justice for Murdered & Missing Indigenous Women.” So read a hand-painted sign displayed by roughly 20 demonstrators on March in rural Ontario. The group lit a campfire and blocked Canada’s VIA Railway near the Tyendinaga Mohawk reserve, halting trains between Toronto and Montreal. This demonstration comes after parliament released a report examining Canada’s epidemic of Aboriginal women who have been killed or gone missing. According to the BBC, the report did not recommend a full public inquiry into the issue, angering many First Nations activists.
Source: Zak Cheney-Rice, Policy Mic; ICNC email@example.com
Some Americans are willing to stand up and do something to slow the National Security Agency’s (NSA) construction of the surveillance state. Activists are working to cut off the supply of water to the NSA’s massive Utah Data Center located near Bluffdale, Utah. State Representative Mark Roberts offered a bill (HB 161) that would prohibit “cooperation between a federal agency that collects electronic data and any political subdivisions of the state.” In other words, cities would be required to refuse to support the NSA’s data collection within the state of Utah.
Source: Joe Wolverton, The New American; ICNC firstname.lastname@example.org.
David Marmol, an activist with the Yasunidos Collective, reported he was detained on March 14 by members of the Presidential Guard and beaten by unknown persons for having made a “thumbs down” gesture with his hand when the presidential caravan passed by. Marmol said that he had been collecting signatures in a Quito park against the oil drilling in Yasuni when the caravan passed by. He made the gesture to express disapproval of the government’s oil policy.
Source: Mark Hitchen, On Global Trends; ICNC icnc@ nonviolent-conflict.org
Senators Edward J. Markey (D-MA) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) have introduced a bill to cut $100 billion from the current nuclear weapons budget over the next decade. The Smarter Approach to Nuclear Expenditures (SANE) Act would decrease the number of deployed strategic submarines from 14 to 8, reduce the purchase of replacement submarines from 12 to 8, cut warhead life extension programs, remove the nuclear mission from F-35s, and cancel nuclear weapon making facilities and missile defence programs. The authors of the bill want the US to stop wasting money on nuclear programs and invest instead in such things as education.
Also, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) proposed the Reduce Expenditures in Nuclear Investments Now Act (REIN) in the House of Representatives. Source: Senator Markey’s office in Washington, D.C.