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Amnesty slams PNG for inaction over sorcery case

Amnesty International on Thursday hit out at Papua New Guinea for failing to bring to justice the killers of a woman who was burned to death a year ago for sorcery. Kepari Leniata, 20, was stripped naked, tied up, doused in petrol and burned alive in front of a crowd by relatives of a boy who died following an illness in the city of Mount Hagen in February last year.

Madonna to introduce Pussy Riot duo at U.S. Amnesty concert

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Pop icon Madonna said Wednesday she will introduce to the stage two formerly jailed members of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot when they appear at an Amnesty International concert in New York next week, hailing the pair as "fellow freedom fighters." Maria Alyokhina, 25, and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 24, will speak at the concert organized by the human rights group on February 5 during their first trip to New York since being granted amnesty in December by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Foreign Affairs Minister Baird says Snowden should surrender to U.S.

OTTAWA - National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden should abandon his bid for asylum in Brazil and surrender himself to the United States, Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said Wednesday. Baird told The Canadian Press that Snowden's actions have compromised global security. "I think I probably agree with the Obama administration on this one," Baird said. "I think he's done significant damage to national security, of the free world."

Russia approves amnesty covering Pussy Riot, Greenpeace

Russian lawmakers on Wednesday approved a Kremlin-backed amnesty bill that is set to free the two jailed members of the punk band Pussy Riot while also ending the prosecution of 30 Greenpeace crew members. Russia's Duma lower house of parliament voted 446 in favour to none against for the amnesty, which commemorates 20 years since Russia ratified its current constitution.

Unpaid workers in Qatar running low on food

Migrants who have worked for nearly a year without pay on a Qatar skyscraper are facing "severe food shortages" and cannot leave or seek other employment, Amnesty International said Wednesday. Qatar has come under mounting criticism from rights groups, particularly after being chosen to host the 2022 World Cup, which has spotlighted the conditions of migrant workers in the gas-rich monarchy's booming construction industry.

Unpaid workers in Qatar running low on food

Migrants who have worked for nearly a year without pay on a Qatar skyscraper are facing "severe foot shortages" and cannot leave or seek other employment, Amnesty International said Wednesday. Qatar has come under mounting criticism from rights groups, particularly after being chosen to host the 2022 World Cup, which has spotlighted the conditions of migrant workers in the gas-rich monarchy's booming construction industry.

Amnesty International blasts Mexico for inaction on rights

Mexico City, Nov 29 (EFE).- Twelve months after taking office, the administration of Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto "has failed to demonstrate that human rights are its priority," Amnesty International said Friday. Abuses, such as forced disappearances, violence against migrants and attacks on rights activists, have gone on with impunity during the first year of Peña Nieto's six-year mandate, AI's Mexican chapter said in a statement.

Cambodian land activist freed for retrial

Cambodia's Supreme Court on Friday freed an outspoken land activist and ordered her retrial, in a controversial case that has sparked international criticism from rights groups. Yorm Bopha, who was jailed for three years last December for allegedly taking part in beating two men, walked free from the hearing after judges returned the case to the appeal court "for further investigation". But the 30-year-old land rights campaigner, named a "prisoner of conscience" by Amnesty International, slammed the court's decision to retry her.

Saudi court hands rights lawyer 3-month jail sentence

Saudi prominent rights lawyer Waleed Abulkhair said on Wednesday a court had sentenced him to three months in prison over a petition he signed two years ago criticising the authorities. Abulkhair told AFP he would remain out of jail pending an appeal of the sentence. The court in the western city of Jeddah handed down the sentence late Tuesday, citing the lawyer's signing of a petition criticising harsh sentences given to 16 Islamists arrested in 2011.

Amnesty says Saudi rights record getting worse

Amnesty International on Monday said Saudi Arabia had failure to act on UN recommendations and "ratcheted up the repression" since 2009, with the arbitrary detention and torture of activists. The London-based watchdog's statement was released ahead of a UN Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva on Monday to discuss the oil-rich kingdom's record, and comes after Riyadh rejected a seat on the UN Security Council, citing the international body's "double standards" and inability to resolve regional conflicts.
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