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Human Rights

Symphony provides handsets for underprivileged slum girls

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Recently the number one handset brand Symphony Mobile signed a MOU with ‘TERRE DES ITALIA’ (TDH) Italia. Under the MOU Symphony mobile handed over 200 Feature Phones & 20 Smartphones to the officials of TDH Italia. Those mobile phones will be distributed by TDH Italia among the underprivileged slum girls at pr-pic_mouCapital’s Baunia Badh slam area, Palllabi. Those girls are members of a project by TDH Italia. The MOU signed at Edison Group’s Head office. From Edison Group Managing Director, Mr. Jakaria Shahid &...

Satellites reveal ‘child slave camps’ in Bangladesh

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Hundreds of child slaves could be working on a protected World Heritage Site in Bangladesh, according to a researcher who discovered five previously unknown labour camps using satellite technology. Two fish processing plants located on the Sundarbans National Park in the south west of Bangladesh were already suspected of using forced labour, including, it is claimed, children as young as nine, working for up to 40 hours straight. The additional five camps, used to dry fish for pet food, were located by Professor Kevin Bales of the University of Nottingham using satellite technology including Google Earth. “People are suffering here. Children are killed in these places regularly: sometimes they’re

Fatal factory fire in Bangladesh is déjà vu

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The horror of worker deaths is overshadowing Eid celebrations in Bangladesh. Last weekend, a fierce fire ripped through a three-storey packaging factory and eventually caused the building to collapse. The death toll so far at Tampaco Foils Ltd is 33 workers, with dozens more injured. Before it was reduced to ruins, Tampaco counted Nestle in Bangladesh and British American Tobacco among its multinational clients. The Bangladesh government has announced compensation for the victims and ordered an investigation. Criminal complaints have reportedly been filed, including against the factory owner, who is a former member of parliament. But this latest disaster begs the question: how many more people need to die before Bangladesh finally tackles its unsafe factories?

BATB abuses children in its supply chain: Swedwatch

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In its Smokescreens in the Supply Chain report, the Swedish NGO blamed British American Tobacco (BAT), the world’s third largest tobacco company, for “expanding cultivation into new countries without adequately addressing human rights challenges”. Swedwatch said it had identified widespread child labour issues and severe health issues in BAT’s Bangladeshi supply chain. Frida Arounsavath, a researcher at Swedwatch, told EurActiv.com that the workers producing tobacco for BAT Bangladesh (BATB) were farmers, their wives and children, and also hired agriculture labourers, as well as their family members. “Children and adults alike report health problems from exposure to pesticides, absorption of nicotine through the skin when handling the leaves (the acute poisoning is called Green...

Stop politicising counterterrorism: ICG

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International Crisis Group has called the 1 July Dhaka attack the most visible manifestation yet of the threat that a new generation of self-styled jihadis poses to Bangladesh that boasts of its pluralistic society. Referring to premier Sheikh Hasina’s resolve ‘to bring all terrorists to justice’, the Brussels-based group questioned if this was “finally a wake-up call for a government that has too often underplayed the radical Islamist threat”. In an article titled “Bangladeshi Leaders Must Stop Politicising Counterterrorism” published in Nikkei Asian Review on 6 July, ICG’s Shehryar Fazli wrote that the Islamic State group was

Militant attacks are the result of failed institutions: AHRC

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The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) condemns the terrorist attack in Bangladesh’s capital city, Dhaka. The country experienced bloodshed on July 1 and 2. A group of militants attacked a Spanish restaurant in the diplomatic zone at Gulshan in Dhaka, at around 9 p.m. on Friday. Around 8 gunmen captured the Holey Artisan Bakery at gunpoint and took all staff and customers as hostage. A police operation was foiled when the attackers fired AK 22 Assault Rifles and launched grenades at the police, causing the deaths of two police officers (an Inspector of Police and an Assistant Commissioner of the Detective Branch of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police) and injuring more than 20 others. A team of the