In southern Italy, the mafia preys on teens

In southern Italy, the mafia preys on teens

In recent years in Italy, an increased number of women and young girls have begun testifying against the mob and their criminal activities. Here, Connie Agius details the case of one girl who for years was preyed on by the ‘Ndrangheta, one of the most ferocious mafia groups in Italy. Photo at left by Chiara Marra. Read More »

What Amnesty International found at Saydnaya Prison in Syria

What Amnesty International found at Saydnaya Prison in Syria

A recent report by Amnesty uncovered allegations of abuses sanctioned by the Syrian government that include mass executions, torture, and other acts that could amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity. Here, Nicolette Boehland, a Syria researcher at Amnesty, talks about how the world “needs to realize the extent of the problem.” Photo at left by Scott Bob. Read More »

Refugee ban resembles U.S. refusal of Jews in 1939

Refugee ban resembles U.S. refusal of Jews in 1939

There’s a comparison to be made with history in terms of today’s Muslim ban. In 1939, 908 Jewish refugees fled Germany on a ship called the St. Louis. They were denied entry into the United States. Of the 908 refugees returned to Europe, 254 were murdered in the Holocaust. Right now, we are stopping refugees at our airports and have already turned some back to possible death. Photo at left by Beverly Yuen Thompson. Read More »

Unimaginable trauma of Yazidi women is heightened by fragile psychosocial support

Unimaginable trauma of Yazidi women is heightened by fragile psychosocial support

With potentially thousands more Yazidi women soon to be in her position, a young woman named Zara is asking the world not to abandon them. Arbitrary closures—such as one this month—of the limited places in Iraq remaining for survivors will strip women like Zara of the few comforts of home, and self, they have left. Photo at left by Caroline Gluck/EU/ECHO. Read More »

Without IDs, Afghan women remain invisible in the justice system

Without IDs, Afghan women remain invisible in the justice system

By — March 13, 2017
Nargez* was 14 when her father arranged her marriage to a 55-year-old stranger who offered a large amount of money. After years of sexual and physical abuse, she fled with her brother’s help and sought safety in his home. But when she tried to file for divorce, her husband pressed charges against her for running away and against her brother for helping her. They were sentenced to seven years. more »
In southern Italy, the mafia preys on teens

In southern Italy, the mafia preys on teens

By — March 3, 2017
Thirteen-year-old Jane* lived in Melito Porto Salvo, a village in Calabria, a region that is commonly referred to as Italy’s toe. She was young, confused, and lonely after her parents decided to separate. Like many children in this situation, she struggled to make sense of her new world. All of that changed when she met 19-year-old Davide Schimizzi in the summer of 2013. Their romance filled an emotional void in her life. more »
How Amnesty uncovered ‘a universe of degradation’ at Saydnaya Prison

How Amnesty uncovered ‘a universe of degradation’ at Saydnaya Prison

By — February 22, 2017
Earlier this month, Amnesty released a report detailing allegations of government-sanctioned abuses in the two buildings of Saydnaya military prison outside of Damascus, between 2011 and 2015. The findings show a systematic policy of mass executions, torture and deprivation of food, water, medicine and medical care, which could amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity. more »
São Paulo tries to combat Brazil’s rape culture

São Paulo tries to combat Brazil’s rape culture

By — February 15, 2017
On December 14, 2016, 23-year-old feminist activist Débora Soriano de Melo was bludgeoned to death with a baseball bat in a bar in São Paulo, Brazil. There was evidence that the young activist suffered sexual abuse that same night. Detectives suspected Willy Gorayeb Liger, a manager of the bar, in the assault and called for his arrest on rape charges. more »
Trying to slow Kenya’s HIV rates, locals tackle sex-for-fish trade

Trying to slow Kenya’s HIV rates, locals tackle sex-for-fish trade

By — February 9, 2017
After her husband died, Margaret, 55, saw no alternative but to sell her body in order to feed her four children. She would walk down to Lake Victoria every day to buy fish to sell in the market. But first she had to have sex with a fisherman. For at least the past two decades, fishermen at Lake Victoria have demanded sex before selling their catch to female fish traders. more »

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