The United States of America finds that neither the classic instruments of criminal law and procedure, nor the framework of the laws of war (including respect for the Geneva Conventions) has been apt to address the terrorist threat. As a result it has introduced new legal concepts, such as "enemy combatant" and "rendition", which were previously unheard of in international law and stand contrary to the basic legal principles that prevail on our continent. Thus, across the world, the United States has progressively woven a clandestine "spider's web" of disappearances, secret detentions and unlawful inter-state transfers, often encompassing countries notorious for their use of torture. Hundreds of persons have become entrapped in this web, in some cases merely suspected of sympathising with a presumed terrorist organisation....
Many thousand Somalis flee their war-torn country every year in
search of safety. for those who reach Libya, indefinite detention,
torture and other abuses await them. Many then embark on perilous
sea journeys towards Europe. Those who survive often end up in
Malta, where they face detention followed by isolation and poverty
in cramped accommodation.
After an exploratory mission in September 2006, Médecins du Monde (MdM)
France decided to plan and to implement an international humanitarian mission concerning the
access to health care of asylum seekers in Malta for a duration of 5 months starting from April
2007. The main objective of the mission was to foster the right to access
health care among the migrants living in detention and in the Open Centres. The humanitarian
mission in Malta was started on April 18th 2007. The MdM team - consisting of a nurse and a
medical doctor with a Master of Science in Public Health - offered medical consultations between
June 1st and August 30th in the two biggest Open Centres....
June 8, 2006 International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights
The human rights situation deteriorated in numerous former Soviet republics. Independent
human rights monitoring groups, including several affiliates of the IHF, came under
attack. The Russian Federation, Belarus, and the Central Asian regimes promulgated
new legislation or changed their practices to allow these states arbitrarily to restrict the activities
of nongovernmental organizations. The leaders of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee
faced fabricated criminal charges, and in January 2006, state-controlled Russian media
falsely implicated the Moscow Helsinki Group in espionage....
The United States has progressively woven a clandestine "spider's web" of disappearances, secret detentions and unlawful inter-state transfers - spun with the collaboration or tolerance of Council of Europe member states, the Legal Affairs Committee of the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) said today. In a draft resolution adopted at a meeting in Paris, based on a report by Dick Marty (Switzerland, ALDE), the committee said hundreds of persons had become entrapped in this web - in some cases when they were merely suspected of sympathising with a presumed terrorist organisation. The parliamentarians said this knowing collusion of member states took several different forms, including secretly detaining a person on European territory, capturing a person and handing them over to the US or permitting unlawful "renditions" through their airspace or across their territory. "It# has now been demonstrated incontestably, by numerous well-documented and convergent facts, that secret detentions and unlawful inter-state transfers involving European countries have taken place, such as to require in-depth inquiries and urgent responses by the executive and legislative branches of all the countries concerned," the committee said. The committee called on Council of Europe member states to review bilateral agreements signed with the United States, particularly those on the status of US forces stationed in Europe, to ensure they conformed fully to international human rights norms. The report is due for debate by the plenary Assembly - which brings together 630 parliamentarians from the 46 Council of Europe member states - in Strasbourg on 27 June 2006....
The Broader Middle East and North Africa Initiative (BMENA) is a multilateral development and reform plan aimed at fostering economic and political liberalization in a wide geographic area of Arab and non-Arab Muslim countries. In December 2004, the first BMENA meeting took place in Rabat, Morocco and was called the "Forum for the Future."At the forum, foreign ministers and finance ministers of the countries in the region stretching from Morocco to Pakistan as well as from the countries of the G8 pledged to create several new development programs and committed $60 million to a regional fund for business development. Critics of BMENA contend that the initiative focuses too heavily on economic issues instead of political reform and does little to
strengthen non-governmental organizations and civil society groups in Arab and non-Arab Muslim countries....