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antonio-guterresAFP, Ankara – The world is losing its ability to prevent conflicts and the lack of “effective leadership” has led to the worst displacement situation since World War II, the UN refugee chief warned Tuesday.

Antonio Guterres, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, said in Ankara that the twin crises in Iraq and Syria had created a serious displacement situation and the world showed no effective leadership to address the challenges. (more…)

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Iraq death toll 2014Al Jazeera – Violence in Iraq killed more than 15,000 civilians and security personnel in 2014, government figures have shown, making it one of the deadliest years since the 2003 US-led invasion.

Figures compiled by the health, interior and defence ministries and published on Thursday put the death toll at 15,538, compared with 17,956 killed in 2007 during the height of Sunni-Shia sectarian killings. (more…)

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A man carries a girl past damage at a site hit by what activists said was an air strike by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in the northwestern Homs district of Al Waer Dec. 30, 2014. (Reuters)

A man carries a girl past damage at a site hit by what activists said was an air strike by forces loyal to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad in the northwestern Homs district of Al Waer Dec. 30, 2014. (Reuters)

Al – Arabiya – More than 76,000 people were killed in the Syrian civil war in 2014, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Thursday.The Britain-based monitoring group said 33,278 civilians were among those killed last year in the conflict, which started with protests in 2011 and has spiralled into a civil war. (more…)

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A girl in Khakhe camp who was a victim of abuse by the armed group calling itself Islamic State.  © Amnesty International

A girl in Khakhe camp who was a victim of abuse by the armed group calling itself Islamic State.
© Amnesty International

Amnesty International – Torture, including rape and other forms of sexual violence, suffered by women and girls from Iraq’s Yezidi minority who were abducted by the armed group calling itself the Islamic State (IS), highlights the savagery of IS rule, said Amnesty International in a new briefing today.  (more…)

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Thousands of children have been forced to flee their homes during the three-year conflict [AFP]

Thousands of children have been forced to flee their homes during the three-year conflict [AFP]

Al Jazeera – At least 10 children have been killed after two schools were hit in a series of air strikes carried out by the Syrian government in Damascus and villages in the Idlib province, sources say.

Military jets dropped barrel bombs on a school in the town of Safohan in Idlib province on Tuesday, killing seven children. (more…)

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The Hague, Binnenhof

The Hague, Binnenhof

MEFD, London – Middle East Forum for Development (MEFD) and British Pakistani Christian Association (BPCA) are delighted with the decision of the Dutch government to designate Pakistani Christians as a ‘risk group’, implicating a major change in the country’s asylum policy towards the minority group that will make it easier for them to be recognised as refugees in The Netherlands. (more…)

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One million people have been wounded during Syria’s civil war and diseases are spreading as regular supplies of medicine fail to reach patients. (File photo: AFP)

One million people have been wounded during Syria’s civil war and diseases are spreading as regular supplies of medicine fail to reach patients. (File photo: AFP)

Al Arabiya – One million people have been wounded during Syria’s civil war and diseases are spreading as regular supplies of medicine fail to reach patients, the World Health Organization’s Syria representative said, according to Reuters news agency.

“In Syria, they have a million people injured as a direct result of the war. You can see it in the country when you travel around. You see a lot of amputees,” Elizabeth Hoff said. “This is the biggest problem.” (more…)

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United Nations

AP – The U.N. General Assembly on Thursday approved resolutions criticizing the human rights situations of North Korea, Iran and Syria.

North Korea has been outraged by the resolution that urges the U.N. Security Council to refer the country’s human rights situation to the International Criminal Court. The council will meet for the first time Monday on North Korea’s human rights violations. (more…)

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The vast majority of those killed in the attack were school children.© AFP/Getty Images

The vast majority of those killed in the attack were school children.© AFP/Getty Images

Amnesty International – Today’s Taliban attack on a school in the Pakistani city of Peshawar shows a merciless disregard for human life and highlights the urgent need for protection of civilians in the area, Amnesty International said. (more…)

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carte2014_enTime – Media activists say attacks on journalists are becoming increasingly barbaric

At least 66 journalists were killed across the globe this year while another 178 media workers were imprisoned, according to industry monitoring outlet Reporters Without Borders (RSF). (more…)

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