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Published on September 29th, 2014 | by admin


Peace And Equality Weekly Report – Monday Sept 29th, 2014

Pic source: Sanjay Pandey/Al Jazeera


L’Oreal, Estee Lauder and other top cosmetic brands rely on Indian children working in illegal mines: Children toiling illegally in Indian mines are producing a key ingredient used in the products of some of the global cosmetics industry’s most prominent names. A report by campaign group DanWatch said child labour is being used in the eastern states of Jharkhand and Bihar to extract mica, which is then added to the make-up produced by at least 12 multinational companies. At least 5,000 children may be producing mica – used to add glitter to natural cosmetics – which is bought by intermediaries and then exported to high-profile international customers such as L’Oreal and Estee Lauder. “In our research we found illegal mica mining often involves child labour, which is a significant problem in India,” Louise Voller of DanWatch told Al Jazeera. “This report confirms that most companies do not give the consumers a clear picture of their supply chain.” Read more at


“Umbrella Revolution” Hong Kong Protests for democracy; China censors images of Hong Kong protests in TV broadcasts to mainland: People look at the latest newspaper coverage of the protests in Hong Kong. Citizens in mainland China have been getting a very different view of events. While television sets in Hong Kong blaze with images of the pro-democracy protests that have paralysed the central business district since Sunday, citizens in mainland China have been getting a very different story: that a few thousand people gathered in a local park to celebrate the Chinese government. On Sunday night, tens of thousands of protesters throughout Hong Kong faced down teargas and baton charges, but the state-controlled broadcaster Dragon TV did not show these images. Instead, it cheerfully announced that 28 civil society groups had spent the weekend in Tamar Park voicing support for the central government’s decisions on the region’s political future. The broadcast showed a crowd of people waving Chinese flags to celebrate the upcoming 65th anniversary of country-wide Communist party rule. “We all hope Hong Kong can be prosperous and stable,” said a young man wearing glasses and a red polo shirt. “I think the National People’s Congress’s decision can bring us a step closer to fulfilling our requirement for universal suffrage.” Read more at


Deadly North East Floods, CM says Meghalaya back by 10 years: Meghalaya Chief Minister Mukul Sangma today said the devastation left by last week’s flash flood and landslide has taken the State back to what it was ten years ago. “There is so much we need to do now. We have moved back ten years in our development programmes due to the flood as major areas have been devastated by the floods. Everywhere we went there were only sad stories to tell,” the Chief Minister said after touring by car. Severe cloudburst lasting over 72 hours last week had left a trail of devastation in the entire State with the western Garo Hills the worst affected. The devastation that has followed the cloud burst in the State has left 52 dead and properties worth several hundred crore of rupees damaged, Deputy Chief Minister Roytre C Laloo said. The deaths occurred mostly in the Garo Hills region and the damaged properties included road, houses, livestock and agriculture worth about Rs 2000 crore, he said. Read more at


Jayalalitha, first Chief Minister to be convincted: An epic 18-year-long legal battle ended in less than five minutes on Saturday. All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam supremo Jayalalithaa arrived at the Parappana Agrahara complex as Tamil Nadu Chief Minister. By the time the curtains were drawn on the dramatic day, she had lost her post after having been found guilty of corruption. It took only five minutes for the Special Judge trying the case, John Michael Çunha, to pronounce the order convicting the four accused. The three-time Chief Minister was sentenced to four years’ simple imprisonment and a Rs. 100-crore fine was imposed on her for offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act. Her co-accused — Sasikala Natarajan, V. Sudhakaran and J. Elavarasi — were sentenced to four years’ imprisonment with a fine of Rs. 10 crore each. Read more at


California Ends Forced Sterilizations in State Prisons: Doctors under contract with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation sterilized nearly 150 female inmates from 2006 to 2010 without required state approvals, The Center for Investigative Reporting has found. At least 148 women received tubal ligations in violation of prison rules during those five years – and there are perhaps 100 more dating back to the late 1990s, according to state documents and interviews. From 1997 to 2010, the state paid doctors $147,460 to perform the procedure, according to a database of contracted medical services for state prisoners. The women were signed up for the surgery while they were pregnant and housed at either the California Institution for Women in Corona or Valley State Prison for Women in Chowchilla, which is now a men’s prison. Read more at


Communal Clashes in Vadodara, more Than 200 Arrested: More than 200 people have been arrested in the town of Vadodara in Gujarat after days of communal tension and violence between Hindus and Muslims. The clashes began on Thursday after an image that was offensive was posted on Facebook and WhatsApp; members of the two communities threw stones at each other and set vehicles on fire. Over a dozen people have been injured since then, one of them in a case of stabbing yesterday but officials say all injuries reported are minor. Vadodara is 120 kilometres from Ahmedabad. This morning, shops in the affected areas of Fatehpura and Yakutpura re-opened for business as the town tries to return to normal. Gujarat’s government deployed riot police to control the clashes over the weekend and appealed to religious leaders to intervene to curb them. Mobile telephone Internet and bulk text messaging has been suspended till tomorrow as a precautionary step. Read more at


Malaysia urged to stop transgender arrests: After calling Malaysia “one of the worst places” for transgenders, international watchdog Human Rights Watch (HRW) revealed today that it will meet with government officials this week in hopes of putting an end to the arbitrary arrests of the minority group under the Shariah law. In a report detailing human rights abuses against the group released today, HRW made several recommendations, including urging Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to retract his statement in 2012, where he reportedly said Malaysia should “fight” the minority group. “The first thing we ask is to stop the arrest of transgendered people for being who they are … We want transgender people to live in peace in Malaysia,” Boris Dittrich, HRW’s advocacy director in charge of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues told reporters during the report launch here. Dittrich said HRW’s team has been in the country since Sunday to meet government officials, including the Attorney-General’s Chambers on Monday. Read more at


Marshall Islands Speaker Tells U.N. ‘We Are Drawing The Line Here’ On Climate Change (Video): If any country understands the urgency of acting on climate change, it’s the Marshall Islands. The small island nation has become the poster child of climate change’s real, visible impacts — it sits, on average, just about 6 feet above sea level, and has already had to battle with extreme drought and flooding that has come close to destroying its capital city. So it comes as no surprise that the United Nations chose 26-year-old Marshall Islands poet Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner to be among the keynote speakers at the U.N.’s climate summit in New York Tuesday. Jetnil-Kijiner was chosen from 544 applicants who answered a U.N. call for a woman under 30 who hails from a developing country and has a history of climate change work to speak at the summit’s opening session. Jetnil-Kijiner called on world leaders to act on climate change for the benefit of future generations, reciting a poem to her infant daughter that assures her that the world would fix climate change before the Marshall Islands was swallowed up by the sea. She also spoke of the climate change impacts she’s seen in the Marshall Islands first-hand. Read more at

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