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Good morning, this is Pip, and today we’re hearing about rescue efforts underway in the Central Mediterranean as increasing numbers of people attempt the treacherous journey out of Libya.

We’re also getting the latest on events in Myanmar two weeks on from the military coup, and checking in on the case of a Liberian warlord charged with heinous crimes whose trial resumed in Switzerland yesterday.

photo journaliste

Pip Cook


Peace and humanitarian news

Photo article

The crew of the Ocean Viking completeing a rescue. (Hippolyte / SOS Mediterranee)

🚢 Saving lives in the Central Mediterranean. Finally back at sea after five months blocked at port, the crew of the Ocean Viking has already rescued nearly 800 people off the coast of Libya. With the number of departures from the North African country on the rise and few NGO vessels on hand to respond to distress calls, Geneva Solutions speaks to Caroline Abu Sa’Da, head of the ship's operator SOS Mediterranée Suisse, about the ongoing crisis.

Geneva Solutions (EN)

🇲🇲 Myanmar military steps up action against protesters. Armoured vehicles have been deployed, along with increased military presence on the streets and the introduction of new draconian laws clamping down on demonstrator’s rights. As protests continue, there’s concern over what the military might do next.

Geneva Solutions (EN)

🇱🇷 Liberian warlord on trial in Switzerland. The landmark trial of a Liberian rebel commander resumed in Bellinzona, Switzerland on Monday after a delay caused by Covid-19. Alieu Kosiah faces allegations of executions and cannibalism committed during the country's long-running civil war. A number of his victims are expected to testify against him.

Reuters (EN)

In case you missed it...

🏆 Imprisoned Chinese lawyer wins human rights award. Yu Wensheng was arrested in 2018 following his work on several high-profile cases defending fellow lawyers, alongside advocating for judicial and constitutional reform. He was the winner of this year’s Martin Ennals Award for human rights defenders.

Geneva Solutions (EN)

Here’s what else is happening

Image of the day

Photo article

Rohingya refugees prepare to board navy vessels on Monday. (Keystone/AP Photo)

Bangladesh moves Rohingya refugees to remote island. Around 2000 Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar were sent on Monday to Bhasan Char in the Bay of Bengal, which is regularly submerged by monsoon rain. The decision sparked criticism from human rights groups. However, Bangladeshi authorities insist conditions will be better there than in Cox’s Bazaar - the world’s largest refugee camp.

Sky News (EN)

Number of the day

Photo article

A decade on from the Arab Spring protests, internal displacement is still at crisis level across the Middle East and North Africa, according to a new report from the International Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC).


Next on the agenda

16 February | Women’s Rights and Free Speech in the Digital World. While digital spaces bring about new opportunities, they also create new forms of threats and violence that have a disproportionate impact on women.

Forum-Asia (EN)

18 February | The gendered impacts of the Israeli occupation on Palestinian women and girls. Panelists will discuss the impacts of the occupation from a gender-sensitive perspective.

Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) (EN)

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