Tag Archives: British

China News | LGBTQ Immigrants

Hong Kong court green-lights spousal visas for same-sex couples
  • Hong Kong’s highest court ruled in favor of a two British-national partners, which is expected to open residential visas to spouses regardless of gender in the partnership.
  • Without spousal visas, the same-sex partners of Hong Kong residents could only reside in the city on short-term tourist visas that prohibited work or access to public services.
  • While a recent poll showed more than 50% of Hongkongers support same-sex marriage, native Hong Kong residents still do not have access to same-sex marriage rights, though advocates and some legal experts have suggested the ruling could serve to expand their access to housing and family rights.

Iran News | Dual Nationals

Iran arrests British-Iranian dual national as crackdown continues
  • An Iranian prosecutor indicated through state media that an Iranian-British dual national had been arrested for links to British intelligence services.
  • The official indicated that the arrest was a part of an ongoing crackdown against Western “infiltration,” which has ramped up in the wake of the Iran nuclear deal.
  • The arrest is at least the seventh of such dual nationals—whose non-Iranian citizenship the Iranian government does not recognize—arrested in the last year.

Read more:
Iran says it has detained a dual national linked to British intelligence” (Reuters)
Iran accuses dual national of spying for British intelligence” (BBC)
Iran arrests suspected British spy” (Bloomberg via The Toronto Star)

ClimateWatch | Turkey

Turkey’s “Purge”

The recent attempted coup by a faction within Turkey’s military has left the country in the throes of uncertainty, further increasing citizens’ and human rights watchdogs’ already pronounced concerns about the future of civil liberties in Turkey. Ground zero for the attempted overthrow of the government were Ankara and Istanbul, home to journalists overrun on the air by military forces and ordinary citizens called into the streets by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan via FaceTime.

Daylight illuminated the deaths of nearly 300, the wounds of the 1,400 injured, and the beginning of a so-called “purge” that has further endangered groups already vulnerable under Erdogan’s regime: political critics, journalists, and intellectuals. Women, too, found themselves targeted amidst the instability, and Turkish Kurds worry that the aftermath will further heighten anti-Kurd sentiment.

But the coup attempt and retaliation are only the latest in Turkey’s security woes. Terrorist attacks in Istanbul and Ankara, conflict with Kurdish militants and pro-Kurd advocates, ongoing intimidation and blackouts of journalists and political dissidents, and a regional refugee crisis have upended the tenuous stability in the country secured through a 2013 ceasefire with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). While the restoration of Erdogan’s government was seen as a victory for democracy, Turks and observers alike fear what measures Erdogan, already intolerant of dissent, will take in its wake.

Here is a look at coverage of the destabilizing security situation for at-risk communities in Turkey: Continue reading ClimateWatch | Turkey

Belgium News | Foreigners

Brussels bombings claims victims from some 40 countries
  • The IS-connected airport and subway bombings in the Belgian capital has left 31 dead and 316 injured to date.
  • Victims have been identified from countries including China, France, India, the Netherlands, Peru, the U.K., and the U.S.
  • Identification has proven difficult given the attack of heavily international bloodlines in the city, as both the open nature of the attacked spaces and the international effort required to obtain material needed for identification slow efforts.

Read more:
Brussels bombings claim casualties from over 40 countries” (Reuters)
Here Are The Victims Of The Brussels Attacks” (BuzzFeed News)
Brussels attacks victims may not be identified for weeks” (The Guardian)

(Image Credit: Philippe Huguen/AFP/Getty, via The Guardian)

Turkey News | Journalists

VICE reporters face terrorism charges in Turkey
  • Four journalists affiliated with VICE News –two British, one locally based, and one unknown–were detained by Turkish anti-terrorism forces for covering the conflict between the government and the Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK).
  • The journalists had their equipment seized after they filming clashes between police and PKK supporters.
  • Because Turkey considers the PKK a terrorist organization, the government has obstructed the work of journalists attempting to contact or cover the group.

“It is completely proper that that journalists should cover this important story. … The decision to detain the journalists was wrong, while the allegation of assisting Islamic state is unsubstantiated, outrageous and bizarre.”

Read the full story at BuzzFeed News.

(Image Credit: Ilyas Akengin/AFP/ Getty Images)

France News | Americans & Britons

Three Americans and one Briton receive France’s highest honor for role in subduing train attacker
  • French President François Hollande awarded the four men the Legion d’Honneur at a reception at the Elysée Palace.
  • The men were a part of a group that subdued the gunman on a train bound for Paris with more than 550 passengers reported on board.
  • A French-American, who was shot and remains hospitalized, and an additional unnamed man also assisted and will receive their honors at a later date.

Read the full story at BuzzFeed News.

(Image Credit: Pool New/Reuters, via BuzzFeed News)

Japan Feature | Black Women

The Life and Love of Black Women in Japan

Part of her “Black Eye” series in The Japan Times examining life in Japan for black immigrants, this Baye McNeil piece shines a light on the hardships of romantic life for black women in the country.  From fetishism to “friend-zoning,” McNeil finds black women face challenges particular to the intersection of their identities in the search for romance and familial security in Japan.

Read the full feature at The Japan Times.

(Image Credit: Matsui Family/Courtesy, via The Japan Times)

China News | International Visitors

British, South African, and Indian tourists deported from China following arrest and detention
  • Visiting China via a South African charity group, the group of 20 were arrested in Inner Mongolia after visiting the Genghis Khan Maosoleum in Ordos.
  • Authorities suggested that they had been arrested on suspicion of connection to terrorism and viewing terrorist propaganda associated with Genghis Khan.
  • The tourists were allegedly detained and denied access to embassies, outside communication, or legal representation.

“The peace-loving group of people aged 33 to 74 believe only in love and the unity of the human spirit. [They] were on a private sightseeing tour in China to see the ancient and modern wonders, and learn and experience new cultures.”

Read the full story at The Guardian.

(Image Credit: Zhang Ling/Xinhua Press/Corbis, via The Guardian)

Kazakhstan News | International Visitors

Kazakhstan extends visa-free travel to 19 countries
  • Following a successful pilot program over the past year, the Kazakh government has extended visa-free travel for up to 15 days to residents of Australia, Hungary, Italy, Monaco, Belgium, Spain, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates, Singapore, the United Kingdom, the United States, Germany, Finland, France, Switzerland and Japan.
  • Should residents desire to stay longer than 15 days, they will be required to reenter or obtain a visa.
  • The program will last through the end of 2017 and has been implemented as Kazakhstan plans to host two major international sporting and cultural events–Winter Universiade and Expo 2017–in the next two years.

Read the full story at Tengrinews.

(Image Credit: Infopass.ru, via Tengrinews)

Tunisia News | International Visitors

Gunman murders 39, wounds 38 at popular tourist hotel in largest terror attack in Tunisian history
  • Armed with an assault rifle, 23-year-old Seifeddine Rezgui opened fire on the beach, in the corridors, and in the offices of the Imperial Marhaba Hotel in Sousse.
  • His stated aim was to attack the tourists, with 15 Britons identified so far among the dead and 1 Irish.
  • The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack, although Tunisia’s PM described the incident as a “lone wolf” attack.

“These were innocent holidaymakers, relaxing and enjoying time with their friends and families. … Like the victims in France and Kuwait yesterday, they did not pose a threat to anybody. These terrorists murdered them because the terrorists oppose people and countries who stand for peace, tolerance and democracy wherever they are in the world. But these terrorists will not succeed.”

Read the full story at the New York Times and BuzzFeed.

(Image Credit: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images, via BuzzFeed)

Japan News | British

Tokyo theater scene sees rise in British directors this season
  • Directors like Thom Southerland, Phillip Breen, Max Webster, and Robin Herford reflect an internationalization of the directing scene, bringing such productions as Titanic, Orpheus Descending, Mary Stuart, and The Woman in Black to the stage.
  • Although producers and directors indicate the trend is largely accidental, they note that as theaters increasingly show international plays, the desire to work with foreign directors intimately familiar with the histories contained in such work has increased.
  • The directors themselves have found ease in working with Japanese actors and note that such internationalization trends are on the rise back in Europe as well.

“Of course our scope to select directors is much greater in today’s global world with information instantly available on our computers. So now there’s no reason not to expand our options to engage with new talent outside Japan.”

Read the full story at the Japan Times.

(Image Credit: Shinji Hosono/Japan Times)