Opposition supporters ransack Haitian parliament in government protest

Jeck Deocampo   •   September 4, 2019   •   434

Politician tensions spilled over in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince on Tuesday (September 03), after opposition supporters reportedly ransacked offices in parliament to impede a session with lawmakers.

As tires burnt in the streets, opposition supporters and opposition lawmakers reportedly turned over tables and damaged property in a parliament building.

The incident comes after months of protests.

Haiti, the first nation to be formed by former slaves in 1804, is the poorest country in the Americas, its economic progress stunted by a long history of political instability, disastrous foreign interventions, and mismanagement. (REUTERS)

Death toll climbs to at least 27 in Iraq on day-3 of protests- police, medics

UNTV News   •   October 4, 2019

Iraqis protest in east Baghdad, Iraq, 03 October 2019. According to local media reports at least 27 people have died since protests erupted two days earlier. Despite an unlimited curfew that was declared in Baghdad on 03 October from 5 am, the protesters went out again and shouted slogans against the government demanding better services and jobs. EPA-EFE/MURTAJA LATEEF

 Iraqi security forces opened fire on thousands of demonstrators who defied a curfew in Baghdad on Thursday (October 3) and exchanged fire with gunmen in a southern city, killing two people on the third day of nationwide anti-government protests.

The protests, in which at least 27 have now been killed and over 600 wounded, began over unemployment and poor services but have escalated into calls for a change of government and pose one of the worst security challenges in years.

They appear to be independent of any political party and seemingly took the security forces by surprise.

At least 4,000 protesters gathered in Baghdad’s Tayaran Square and attempted to march onto the central Tahrir Square only to be met with open fire and heavy tear gas.

Police used live ammunition in the Zaafaraniya district of Baghdad, where a protester was shot dead, and there were protests in the northwestern Shula district.

Police said protesters had fired at them in the town of Rifaen near the southern city of Nassiriya where seven people were killed overnight and one more was killed on Thursday.

Fifty people were wounded in Rifae, including five police, they said. (REUTERS)

(Production: Maher Nazeh, Mostafa Salem)

Haitian senator opens fire during protest near parliament

Robie de Guzman   •   September 24, 2019

A Haitian senator fired his gun into the air during a protest near the country’s parliament on Monday (September 23), leaving at least two injured as anger spills over in the Caribbean country over fuel and food shortages.

Video taken by Reuters showed Senator Jean Marie Ralph Fethiere getting out of his vehicle and firing shots in the air after protesters neared his vehicle. According to reports, a journalist and security guard was injured.

According to local media, Fethiere defended his actions as self-defense from protesters.

A dispute between Haiti and a U.S. energy-trading firm has led to long blackouts and fuel shortages in the Caribbean nation, feeding anger at President Jovenel Moise’s government following the collapse of a supply deal with Venezuela last year.

The Western Hemisphere’s poorest nation, Haiti long relied on fuel shipments from nearby OPEC member Venezuela, which offered cheap financing to several Caribbean nations to buy its gasoline, diesel and other products through a program called Petrocaribe.

But the scheme fell apart last year due to economic turmoil in Venezuela, forcing Haiti – a nation of 11 million people – to return to international markets. The result has put upward pressure on the prices of goods. (Reuters)

(Production: Robenson Sanon)

Palestinian women demand legal protection after alleged honor killing

UNTV News   •   September 5, 2019

Hundreds of Palestinians demonstrated in the West Bank on Wednesday (September 4) to demand legal protection for women, after a 21-year-old woman died last month in what rights groups say was a so-called honor killing.

A Palestinian Authority investigation is underway into the death of Isra’a Ghrayeb, a make-up artist who activists say was beaten by male relatives after a video posted on Instagram allegedly showed a meeting between her and a man who had proposed to her.

According to Palestinian media reports, Ghrayeb sustained serious spinal injuries after falling from a balcony in her home in Beit Sahour, near Bethlehem, while trying to escape an assault by her brothers. She died on August 22.

At least 18 Palestinian women have been killed this year by family members angered at perceived damage to their honor, which may involve fraternizing with men or any infringement of conservative values regarding women, according to the General Union of Palestinian Women and Feminist Institutions.

Ghrayeb’s family has denied the accusations. They said in a statement that Ghrayeb had a “mental condition” and died “after she had a heart attack, following an accidental fall into the (family’s) courtyard”.

The circumstances surrounding Ghrayeb’s death have stirred outrage within the Palestinian territories and on social media, with rights activists demanding action against the alleged perpetrators and legal protection for women under the hashtag #JustceforIsraa.

In the West Bank city of Ramallah, female demonstrators held signs reading: “We are all Isra’a” and “My body is my property. I don’t need your supervision, your care, your honor.”

Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said this week that several people had been detained for questioning over Ghrayeb’s death as part of the inquiry by the Palestinian Authority (PA), which exercises limited self-rule in the Israel-occupied West Bank.

The Palestinian penal code dates to the 1960s and has been criticized for inadequate protection for women and lenient penalties for men who kill them in honor crimes. (REUTERS)

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