Human rights | The Daily Star
  • Return to more of the same

    A 'secret' memorandum of understanding (MoU) between UN agencies and the Myanmar government, a draft of which has been leaked online, revealed that Rohingya refugees cannot expect much change back home on their proposed return. While the UN is yet to publicly release the final MoU, the fact that the Rohingya themselves had not been consulted has been criticised by the Rohingya community.

  • Family planning is a human right

    In 1989, the Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme recommended that July 11 be observed by the international community as World Population Day, a day to focus attention on the urgency and importance of population issues. This year, on World Population Day, the United Nations Population Fund,

  • “Anti-drug drive” threatens development

    One of the most densely populated countries in the world, Bangladesh faces formidable challenges to eradicate poverty and provide sustainable development to its communities. Yet the country has been successful in the past decade in rising to these challenges.

  • Elections in tea gardens and the larger issues of tea workers

    Election of Bangladesh Cha Sramik Union (BCSU) on June 24 was a joyous occasion for tea workers. BCSU happens to be the largest trade union in Bangladesh. And it is the only union for the 97,646 voters who are all registered workers in 161 tea gardens in Sylhet, Maulvibazar, Habiganj, Chattogram and Rangamati Hill District. The recent election was the third time since 1948 that the impoverished tea workers had voted for their leaders.

  • Drug problem requires collective solutions

    AT the 2016 United Nations General Assembly Special Session on the World Drug Problem, it was not just governments that came together to decide on new drug policies that are humane and leave no one behind—people in general, including women and youth, congregated too.

  • Stranded in a foreign land

    It is believed that there are more displaced persons in the world today than at any other point in history. According to the UNHCR, there are 68.5 million people around the world who have been forcibly displaced from their home. The UN Refugee Agency goes on to state: Among them are nearly 25.4 million refugees, over half of whom are under the age of 18.

  • An opportunity to reflect on the suffering of the displaced

    Tragically, more than 68 million people worldwide have been forced from their homes and are in need of generous hearts to help them through challenging times. Today is World Refugee Day, which provides an opportunity to reflect on the suffering of displaced people and what we can do to provide them safety as well as to prevent future displacement. On this year's World Refugee Day, Bangladesh stands out as a beacon of hope and inspiration.

  • A Rohingya's perspective

    Since August last year, the world has witnessed how hundreds of thousands of desperate Rohingyas have fled across the border into Bangladesh, bringing with them tales of unimaginable horror.

  • Anti-Drug War

    Of Akram, accountability, Joseph and justice

    The government of Bangladesh has declared a war on narcotics. It has proclaimed its intent to uproot the scourge of drugs from the land. “None will be spared”, came the stern warning from the authorities. Rapid Action Battalion, the elite law enforcement agency (LEA), swung into action from the first day of the holy month of Ramadan. Other agencies, including the police, were not to be left behind.

  • Colonial law doesn't do justice to rape victims

    The current definition of rape in our Penal Code was formulated in 1890 back in colonial times.

  • Bangladesh's observations on Rohingya deportation

    On April 9, 2018, in an attempt to work around the impasse in the Security Council and the fact that Myanmar is not a state party to

  • Bangladesh demands accountability, peace and justice

    In “Dhaka, Ottawa and The Hague: Rohingya Convergence” (The Daily Star, April 19), I referred to the legal process commenced by the International Criminal Court (ICC) in relation to the arrival of the Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh.

  • India's evolving stand on Rohingya problem

    When Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj undertook a two-day visit to Myanmar on May 10-11, it had important implications for Bangladesh.

  • A crucial stocktaking

    Today, Bangladesh's human rights situation will be reviewed at the United Nations' Human Rights Council in Geneva, under the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) mechanism. The UN Human Rights Council carries out UPR review every four and a half years and this is the third-cycle review for Bangladesh.

  • Rohingya refugees

    Myanmar should pay reparations to Rohingyas

    As the world is already aware, since August 2017, a brutal ethnic cleansing campaign orchestrated by the Myanmar military against the Rohingya people in the Rakhine state of Myanmar has forced more than 700,000 Rohingyas to flee to neighbouring Bangladesh.

  • Still waiting for the bell to ring

    I am tired of visiting morgues, riverbanks and other places in search of my brother,” said Rehana Banu. Her brother Pintu, an opposition activist, was picked up allegedly by plainclothes law enforcers from Pallabi on December 11, 2013. Pintu remains untraced.

  • sexual violence

    Let's start with engaging men in a caregiving role

    Sexual violence including rape of girls and women is a serious concern in our society today. Recently, several cases of rape in public transport have made the headlines.

  • Saving lives with quality care

    Today we celebrate International Day of the Midwife, this year on the theme “Midwives Leading the Way with Quality Care.” It resonates with the remarkable efforts and progress that Bangladesh has made in rolling out and accelerating the midwifery profession, thereby making a critical contribution to the health of women and newborns. In fact, in the past two decades, the maternal mortality rate has been reduced by more than 50 percent in Bangladesh.

  • rohingya

    A lot riding on the UNSC visit

    He importance of the members of the United Nations Security Council's (UNSC) visit to Bangladesh and Myanmar regarding the Rohingya crisis cannot be overstated.

  • Educating the youth for a safe future of work is crucial

    In the Asia-Pacific region, more people than anywhere else start working from a young age. As youth, they often work in hazardous and exploitative jobs to earn income for their families. Some of this work also constitutes child labour. This year, for World Day for Safety and Health at Work, the ILO is focusing on improving the working conditions of young workers as well as bringing an end to child labour.

  • Proposed Digital Security Law: Gives law enforcers greater scope to abuse power

    A Latin proverb says “Experience is the best teacher.” In view of famous British historian James Anthony Froude: “Experience teaches slowly, and at the cost of mistakes.” However, our policy of learning is different. Experience seems to have taught us little. This seems to have been reflected again in offering the police arbitrary powers in the proposed digital security law to take action against alleged offences committed using digital devices.

  • Is global media losing interest?

    As a Bangladeshi with a keen interest in the Rohingya issue, I frequently scan the Internet to get a sense of how the foreign media is treating the evolving Rohingya crisis as we approach the monsoon season. When the Rohingyas started fleeing Myanmar last August, the international community, particularly the Western press, mobilised quickly around the Rohingya cause. From September to December, newspapers, magazines, online media,

  • Is this the way to uphold the glory of the Liberation War?

    It may be a little surprising for the ordinary citizen to know that according to the proposed digital security law, the punishment for spreading propaganda or campaign against the Liberation War of 1971 or its spirit using digital devices or instigating to do so is almost the same as it is for the crime of murdering a human being.

  • Equal rights ensure a strong society

    Human rights include women's rights, and for women to be empowered on equal grounds as men, is at the end of the day, human rights. However, we find ourselves today in a world led and dominated by men. This begins from the basic core household level and carries on up to global dominance. Women need to be given fair and equal representation in every field of life to ensure a balanced social environment. When society allows women to grow, it

  • Digital Security Act 2018

    Why are we worried?

    The Editors' Council yesterday at a meeting with the law minister and post telecommuni-cations and ICT minister expressed deep concern over some provisions in the digital security bill placed in parliament last week. Freedom of expression and independent journalism, they feared, will largely be affected if those provisions remain in the proposed legislation.

  • Dhaka, Ottawa and The Hague: Rohingya Convergence

    On April 4, 2018, the Canadian prime minister's special envoy to Myanmar, Bob Rae, released a report entitled “Tell them we're human: What Canada and the world can do about the Rohingya crisis.” The report investigates the humanitarian crisis as a result of the recent exodus of Rohingya refugees from Myanmar into Bangladesh. It focuses on four themes: the need to combine principle and pragmatism in responding to the serious humanitarian crisis

  • 70 years after Naqba (the Catastrophe)

    March 30 marked the beginning of a six-week passive resistance of the Palestinians to highlight their expulsion from their ancestral land by the Zionist forces 70 years ago.

  • Protected return to protected homeland

    Last week, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina expressed her dismay at the stalemate on the repatriation of the Rohingyas. “We've been making various efforts… but there has been virtually no progress,” she said. A day earlier, her foreign affairs adviser, Gowher Rizvi, called for re-imposition of sanctions against Burma. “Without pressure, nothing will happen. Myanmar won't be secure for the Rohingyas. If Myanmar is not secure, Rohingyas will

  • Promise of a healthier, more equitable SE Asia

    The promise of universal health coverage (UHC) is bold: that all people can access quality health services, when and where they need them, without suffering financial hardship. UHC's benefits are clear. UHC is central to improving health and well-being—a fundamental human right. Healthier populations in turn create more productive economies that raise living standards.

  • Getting serious about ending hunger

    Some of my readers might ask: Why bring up this issue once again since it has always been an implicit goal of the development plans and governmental efforts? Because, we have not been getting the bang for our buck.

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