“We have documented many cases where counter-terrorism legislation and other criminal provisions have been used to harass, arrest, detain and convict civil society actors in Türkiye, including Dr. Fincancı, on spurious grounds”, the experts said in a statement.

Blurred charges

On 26 October, Ms. Fincancı, who helped develop UN reference standards on the investigation and documentation of torture cases, known as the Istanbul Protocol, was arrested at her home on unclear grounds.

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🇹🇷#Türkiye: UN experts call for the immediate release of anti-torture expert Sebnem Korur Fincancı, & urge authorities to stop using counter-terrorism legislation to intimidate human rights defenders.

👉https://t.co/8HKMRhNZgAhttps://t.co/se05787QvS

UN Special Procedures
UN_SPExperts

Her detainment is believed to be in retaliation for her publicly calling for investigations into the alleged use of chemical weapons and associated deaths involving the Turkish military.

“Dr. Fincancı’s arrest appears part of a deliberate pattern of applying counter-terrorism legislation to discredit human rights defenders and organizations and interrupt their vital human rights and medical work”, they added.

Undermining freedoms 

These types of attacks aim to shrink safe civic space, undermine the rule of law, and encroach upon fundamental freedoms and democratic values, according to the Human Rights Council-appointed Special Rapporteurs.

Human rights defenders and medical practitioners’ ability to speak truth to power must be protected”, underscored the independent experts, stressing that exposing human rights violations is “one of the cornerstones of democratic societies”, and that exercising rights of freedom of expression and association, are “protected rights under international human rights law”.

“Detention pending investigation beyond an initial period of interview is an exceptional measure and must be subject to judicial authorization as to its continuing lawfulness and proportionality”, they reminded. 

Call to Türkiye

The Special Rapporteurs urged the Turkish authorities to “immediately and unconditionally” release Ms.

They said unresolved legacies of trade and trafficking in enslaved Africans, as well as colonialism, post-colonial apartheid and segregation, continue to harm these children today. 

Discrimination, stereotypes and xenophobia 

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Racial discrimination harms children of African descent in all areas of life. UN experts call for leaving no child behind by bringing the issues of children of African descent to the centre in education, health, social services & child justice.

👉https://t.co/p1U0qZ6lZt

#UNGA77 https://t.co/D3QqLHXzVp

UN Special Procedures
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The report by the Working Group on people of African descent highlights discrimination in areas that include the administration of justice, law enforcement, education, and health.  

It has been presented to the UN General Assembly in New York  

“Due to racial discrimination, racial stereotypes, systemic racial discrimination and xenophobia, children of African descent are not considered as children at all,” Catherine Namakula, the Working Group Chair, told ambassadors.  

The report found that throughout the diaspora, children of African descent face heavier policing, including more arrests, police surveillance, racial profiling, strip searches and excessive use of force. 

In short, “law enforcement is in conflict with children of African descent,” according to the report. 

Stolen childhoods 

The study details how false racial stereotypes of criminality, culpability and dangerousness, influence decision-making, including by police officers, prosecutors, lawyers and judges globally. 

“The childhoods of people of African descent are stolen by persistent racial disparities in policing and family interventions, including removal of children and termination of parental rights, and racialised decision-making and outcomes,” the authors said. 

The Working Group stated that it is time to take action to end excessive use of force, extra-judicial killings, disparities, racial profiling, racial stereotypes and stereotyping, systemic racial discrimination, hate speech and hate crimes.  

They called for the creation of a racial justice index to measure progress.

The provisional 2022 State of the Global Climate study outlines the increasingly dramatic signs of the climate emergency, which include a doubling of the rate of sea level rise since 1993, to a new record high this year; and indications of unprecedented glacier melting on the European Alps.

The full 2022 report is due to be released in the Spring of 2023, but the provisional study was brought out ahead of COP27, the UN climate conference, raising awareness of the huge scale of the problems that world leaders must tackle, if they are to have any hope of getting the climate crisis under control.

“The greater the warming, the worse the impacts”, said WMO chief Petter Taalas, who launched the report at an event held in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, the venue for this year’s conference. “We have such high levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere now that the lower 1.5 degree of the Paris Agreement is barely within reach. It’s already too late for many glaciers and the melting will continue for hundreds if not thousands of years, with major implications for water security”.

Critical conditions in all parts of the world

The report is a dizzying catalogue of worrying climate events, taking place against a backdrop of record levels of carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide – the three main greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming – which is currently estimated to be around 1.15 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

Throughout the alps, an average thickness loss of between three and over four metres was recorded, whilst in Switzerland, all snow melted during the summer season, the first time this has happened in recorded history; since the beginning of the century, the volume of glacier ice in the country has dropped by more than a third.

The High Commissioner said the Haitian Government also needed to provide a firm commitment to accountability, and the rule of law, after decades of “systematic corruption and rampant impunity”, which have led up to the country’s current paralysis.

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🇭🇹 #Haiti is on the verge of an abyss, UN Human Rights Chief @volker_turk calls for urgent action to avert tragedy. Unremitting armed violence has precipitated Haiti’s descent into the worst human rights and humanitarian situation in decades: https://t.co/z5bAwyoUQrhttps://t.co/P0gJldMFYz

UN Human Rights
UNHumanRights

He warned Haiti has descended into the worst human rights and humanitarian situation in decades. Urgent solutions to this “protracted, multifaceted crisis" must be found, he stressed.

Devastating insecurity

“People are being killed by firearms, they are dying because they do not have access to safe drinking water, food, healthcare, women are being gang raped with impunity. The levels of insecurity and the dire humanitarian situation have been devastating for the people of Haiti,” Mr. Türk said.

For the last two months, heavily armed gangs have been blockading access to the country’s main fuel terminal and seaports, severely hampering access to drinking water, food and medicine.

Food insecurity is on the rise, with a record 4.7 million – nearly half of the population – facing acute hunger. Poor sanitation and lack of safe water supplies have led to a so far uncontrolled cholera outbreak.

To date, 2,600 suspected cases of cholera have been reported, half of them children, and claimed dozens of lives.

Gang violence continues to expand across the capital and in other regions of the country.

Dozens killed

In just over a week in mid-October, more than 71 people were killed, a dozen women were raped, and hundreds of residents were forced to flee their homes, as a result of turf wars between rival gangs in Croix-des-Bouquets, one of the main communes of the metropolitan area of Port-au-Prince, according to the Human Rights Service of the UN Integrated Office in Haiti (BINUH).

According to the UN, inter-communal clashes that have flared up several times since July have caused at least 359 fatalities, injured 469 people, displaced more than 97,000, and triggered extensive property damage.  

“The clashes between the ethnic communities are rooted in long standing issues over land ownership and ethnic representation”, Alice Wairimu Nderitu said in a statement.  

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Flash Update (07): Conflict in Blue Nile State

Humanitarians are assessing the needs of people affected by inter-communal conflict in Blue Nile State, which has displaced up to 97,000 people since mid-July 2022.

Read the latest flash update: https://t.co/eZlnk2jc2khttps://t.co/COzB6Sxznh

UN OCHA Sudan
UNOCHA_Sudan

Persistent violence

The violence, which kicked off in July, was renewed in September and again last month.

It has spread from the Al Rosires locality to Ad Damazin and then to Wad Al Mahi.  

“There is a risk of further escalation as local sources reported that ethnic groups across the border were being mobilized in support of the violence in the Blue Nile,” she warned.

Hate spewed online

The Special Adviser expressed particular concern that violence and reprisal attacks have been fuelled by hate speech and incitement to hatred, exacerbated through social media and in ethnic gatherings.

Despite an agreement on a “cessation of hostilities” by the affected communities on 13 July 2022, ethnic clashes have continued.

“The repeated violence undermines efforts at mitigation and strengthening inter-communal dialogue”, said Ms. Nderitu.  

Pleas for help

The senior UN official welcomed efforts by the government of the Blue Nile region to stop the violence, restore order and establish a committee to investigate the violence in Wad al Mahi locality.

She then called on those in positions of authority to “do their utmost” to institute conflict prevention mechanisms and bring the perpetrators of violations to account “no matter how high or influential”.

Rosemary DiCarlo was briefing the Security Council alongside the Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Ukraine, Denise Brown, who said that with each passing day, UN teams on the ground were facing “new dimensions to the emergency.”

“We are on a path of further escalation, which can only cause more suffering to the people of Ukraine, Russia, and the rest of the world”, Ms. DiCarlo told ambassadors.

Nuclear plant ‘catastrophe’

Warning against further talk of any nonconventional weapons use on the battlefield, she singled out the risk posed by military activity around the Russian-held Zaphorizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant.

Whether intentional, or accidental, any further damage, “could have catastrophic consequences. Any military activity against, from or near the site, must cease immediately.”

As of 18 October, official UN figures show 15,956 civilian casualties so far: 6,322 killed and 9,634 injured since Russia’s invasion of 24 February. At least 397 children have been killed in the war since 24 February. The actual figures are likely much higher, she said.

Targeting power stations

The Political Affairs chief said Russia’s new missile offensive targeting civilian infrastructure in towns and cities in recent days, since the explosion on the bridge to Crimea, was a concerning development.

These attacks threaten to expose millions of civilians to extreme hardship and even life-endangering conditions over the freezing winter, she said, reminding that under international humanitarian law, attacks targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure are prohibited.

Security Council Meets on Maintenance of Peace and Security of Ukraine
UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe
Security Council Meets on Maintenance of Peace and Security of Ukraine

Impunity cannot prevail

She said accountability for international crimes committed during the war, “remains crucial, as new allegations of atrocities have emerged in areas that have recently returned to Ukrainian Government control. We must not let impunity prevail.”

She noted the global impact of the war in Ukraine is “substantial and growing”, calling for the extension of the UN-led Black Sea Grain Initiative to export vital foodstuffs markets in need.