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child soldiers Iraq(Reuters) – Islamic State militants are selling abducted Iraqi children at markets as sex slaves, and killing other youth, including by crucifixion or burying them alive, a United Nations watchdog said on Wednesday.

Iraqi boys aged under 18 are increasingly being used by the militant group as suicide bombers, bomb makers, informants or human shields to protect facilities against U.S.-led air strikes, the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child said. (more…)

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By Mosa ZahedM.Zahed

London, Middle East Forum for Development – The Iraqi government has declared that it will start an investigation in to the massacre of 72 unarmed Iraqi civilians who were reportedly executed in cold blood by Shia militias this week in the village of Barwanah, located in the Diyala province, following a military campaign against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Detailed eye-witness accounts described the horror which unfolded north of Baghdad, after Iraqi government forces (more…)

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Members of the Kurdish security forces inspect the site of bomb attack in Kirkuk  January 30, 2015. REUTERS/Ako Rasheed

Members of the Kurdish security forces inspect the site of bomb attack in Kirkuk January 30, 2015. REUTERS/Ako Rasheed

(Reuters) – Fighting and other violence in Iraq killed at least 1,375 people including 790 civilians in January, the United Nations said on Sunday.

The dead included 585 members of the Iraqi army which is struggling to rebuild itself after Islamic State militants seized large sections of the country last year. (more…)

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People inspect a site hit by what activists said were barrel bombs dropped by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in the northern town of Atareb, in Aleppo province April 24, 2014.  REUTERS/Abdalghne Karoof/Files(Reuters) – The governments of Egypt, Syria and Iraq used real and perceived security threats in 2014 as an excuse to downplay or abandon the rights of their citizens, which ultimately fuelled crises, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said on Thursday

In its annual review of global human rights, the group said security forces across the globe are ignoring rights in dealing with threats, such as China’s crackdown (more…)

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_69904_A2Middle East Online – GENEVA – Turkey faced harsh criticism Tuesday at a United Nations review of its rights record, with diplomats condemning intimidation of journalists and brutal police crackdowns on demonstrators.

“We are concerned about growing restrictions on freedom of expression, including censorship of new media and the Internet, and provisions of Turkish law that (more…)

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People attend the funeral of Shaimaa al-Sabbagh, an activist at the Socialist Popular Alliance Party, during her funeral in Alexandria(Reuters) – At least 17 people were killed on Sunday in Egypt’s bloodiest protests since Abdel Fattah al-Sisi was elected president, as security forces fired at protesters marking the anniversary of the 2011 uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak. (more…)

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Airstrike SyriaBBC News – More than 30 people have been killed in air strikes by Syrian government warplanes near the capital Damascus, activists say.

Six children were among 32 people who died in several raids on the suburb of Hamouriyeh, the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported. (more…)

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UN News Centre – The United Nations human rights office today confirmed that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has established unlawful,so-called ‘shari’a courts’ in the territory under its control that have been carrying out cruel and inhuman punishments against men, women and children. (more…)

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Satellite image showing the extent of damage in Doron Baga taken on 7 Jan 2015, following an attack by Boko Haram.© DigitalGlobe

Satellite image showing the extent of damage in Doron Baga taken on 7 Jan 2015, following an attack by Boko Haram.© DigitalGlobe

Amnesty International – Satellite images released by Amnesty International today provide indisputable and shocking evidence of the scale of last week’s attack on the towns of Baga and Doron Baga by Boko Haram militants.

Before and after images of two neighbouring towns, Baga (160 kilometres from Maiduguri) and Doron Baga (also known as Doro (more…)

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Raif Badawi

Raif Badawi

Amnesty International – A witness confirmed to Amnesty International that the flogging of Saudi Arabian activist Raif Badawi took place this morning after Friday prayers in front of al-Jafali mosque in Jeddah.

“The flogging of Raif Badawi is a vicious act of cruelty which is prohibited under international law,” said Said Boumedouha, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa. (more…)

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