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International News Briefs

Ahed Tamimi’s trial

Tuesday, February 13

Ahed Tamimi’s trial began at the Ofer Military Court on February 13 behind closed doors, as an Israeli military judge banned media from entering the court. Tamimi’s trial has been deemed illegal by United Nations human rights investigators, who stated that it violates her rights under international law. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have also condemned Tamimi’s detention. Tamimi garnered international media attention in December, after a video of her slapping and hitting Israeli soldiers went viral. Every year, the state of Israel detains and prosecutes 500 to 700 Palestinian children as it continues to illegally occupy the Palestinian West Bank.

Written with material from the JPost and AlJazeera.

Venezuela update

Wednesday, February 14

According to a report published in December 2017, the economic, social, and economic crisis in Venezuela has caused more than one million people to leave the country between 2014 and 2017. Of the entire population of forced migrants, only 103,000 have requested refugee status, in the region and in Spain. In 2017, 17,130 demands for refugee status were registered by the Brazilian Federal Police. Brazil and other neighbouring countries are reinforcing police and military presence on their border with Venezuela, boxing in the country’s citizens to face famine and social unrest.

Written with material from the IOL.

Ethnic violence displaces 34,000 in DRC

Tuesday, February 13

The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) reported that ethnic violence has pushed over 22,000 people to flee from the north-east of the Democratic Republic Congo (DRC) to Uganda. In total, 34,000 people have fled the province of Ituri since the beginning of the year. Since the beginning of the month, thirty people have been killed following fighting between Hema herders and Lendu farmers of the province. In December 2016, President Joseph Kabila refused to step down despite his term coming to an end, leading 120,000 to flee the country in 2017. Domestic and international fear of a new civil war in the DRC increases as ethnic clashes continue in the central African country.

Written with material from the O Globo and Internacional Estadão.

“Modicare” announced at Indian union budget meeting

Thursday, February 1

The establishment of “Modicare” was announced at the Indian union budget meeting for 2018-2019. The program will allow about half of the Indian population to gain access to health insurance. While the government has described the scheme as “the world’s largest government funded health care program,” the government has come under criticism. The programme is described as an initiative to court poor rural voters in next year’s general election, as many of them struggle with high healthcare costs. India currently is one of the world’s lowest spenders in public health, with only about one percent of its GDP being invested in the sector. The country is also plagued by a shortage of hospitals and doctors, but the government has taken steps towards making health services more accessible.

Written with material from The Times of India.