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The Rebellion in the Middle East and North Africa

    April 13, 2018
    Douma, woman and child

    In recent days, several governments, including the UK’s, the USA’s and France’s, have signalled their intention to take military action against the Syrian government, which they hold responsible for the recent suspected chemical weapons attacks in Douma.

    It’s important to remember the context here. For the past seven years, the international community’s catastrophic failure to take meaningful action to protect the people of Syria has allowed various parties to this terrible conflict, most notably pro-Assad forces, to commit war crimes and crimes against humanity with complete impunity, often with the assistance of outside powers, particularly Russia.

    Complying with international law

    UN Security Council resolutions have been repeatedly flouted and ignored by both Bashar al-Assad’s government and other belligerents. Widespread frustration with the ineffectiveness and failure of this international body’s inability to protect Syrian civilians is totally understandable.

    November 26, 2015

    By Sara Hashash, Amnesty International's MENA Press Officer, in Tunis.

    After the suicide attack on a bus carrying presidential guards in central Tunis last night, life in the capital seemed to return to normal today. The streets were full of people heading to work, children on their way to school and crowds of commuters packed into the green trams crisscrossing the bustling streets. 

    But there’s no doubt that yesterday’s bombing, which killed at least 12 members of the security forces and injured 20, in the heart of the capital has shaken Tunisia to its core. The attack was the first of its kind targeting security forces on one of the city’s main thoroughfares, close to ministerial buildings, at the height of rush hour. In a sombre address to the nation last night, President Beji Caid Essebsi declared a state of emergency lasting 30 days, for a second time this year. A nightly curfew was imposed in the capital until further notice.