In recent months, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has become a battlefield. Government militia and rebel troops are clashing with painful results, including the rape and murder of civilians and the displacement of an estimated 250,000 people.
In the latest clash in the conflict that has bled the DRC since the 1994 Rwanda genocide, rebels from the army of general Laurent Nkunda, Congres National pour la Defense du Peuple (CNDP) have seized new territory in North Kivu province.
AJWS grantees call for the cessation of brutal xenophobic violence that erupted this week against Haitian nationals and Dominicans of Haitian descent in the Dominican Republic's northwest border towns. This violence is reminiscent of similar waves of aggression in the country in 2005. This latest outbreak was sparked by fury at the alleged killing of a Dominican citizen by a Haitian in Guayubin last week and it elicited a fiery reprisal that reduced at least 25 shanties in Guayubin to ashes on October 29th.
China's Supply of 90% of Sudans's Small Amrs Highlighted as China Assumes Presidency of UN Security Council Oct 1
September 22, 2008; New York, NY - Almost 300 U.S. rabbis representing thousands of congregants sent a letter today calling on Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to press all countries to voluntarily suspend arms sales to Sudan. The letter also urged the U.S. to use its seat on the United Nations Security Council to introduce a resolution to expand the current U.N. arms embargo on Sudan this October when China assumes the Council's presidency October 1.
New York; September 12, 2008 - AJWS today announced that it will be responding to the humanitarian crises in Haiti and the Dominican Republic following Hurricanes Gustav, Hanna and Ike. AJWS is an international development organization motivated by Judaism's imperative to pursue justice.
Amid widespread human rights violations and political violence, Zimbabwe held its run-off presidential election on June 27. Labeled a "sham" by the international community, incumbent Robert Mugabe, the only candidate running, won the election with 85% of the vote. During the tumultuous period leading up to the elections, opposition supporters and organizations faced harassment, intimidation and violence by partisans of the ZANU-PF, Mugabe's party.
INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND HUMANITARIAN ORGANIZATION DECRIES FRAUDULENT ELECTION AND FEARS FOR PUBLIC WELL-BEING
New York, NY; July 1, 2008 - Ruth W. Messinger and James Meier, respectively president and chairman of American Jewish World Service (AJWS), today issued a statement expressing solidarity with the people of Zimbabwe and calling on the government to grant its citizens fair and peaceful elections and the right to live without daily fear of violence.
The cyclone that hit Burma (Myanmar) in early May has only complicated an already appalling humanitarian crisis within the country. With half a million people displaced inside the country due to decades of armed conflict, coupled with an estimated 128,000 dead from the cyclone, Burma needs the world's attention and support now more than ever.
AJWS is currently hosting a speakers' series with Naw Htoo Paw, a human rights activist with Karen Women's Organization (KWO), an AJWS grantee.
The effects of Cyclone Nargis, which ripped through Burma(1) (Myanmar) on May 2, are continuing to cause destruction throughout the country. While the official death toll has risen to 32,000, aid agencies estimate that the number of dead could be as high as 100,000. At least one million are currently homeless, and up to 2 million are at risk of hunger and disease.
The death toll from Cyclone Nargis, which hit Burma this weekend, has topped 22,000. Almost 40,000 people are reported as missing, thousands are homeless and many more have been injured in the aftermath of the devastation. In the delta coast, particularly the Irrawaddy region, 95 percent of homes have been destroyed.
Zimbabweans took to the polls on March 29 to elect a new president, but the winner has yet to be announced. Incumbent Robert Mugabe and his ruling party, ZANU-PF (Zimbabwe African National Union - Patriotic Front) were pitted against opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai and his party, MDC (Movement for Democratic Change). But nearly two weeks after the election, the country's electoral commission is refusing to release the results.
On February 28, rival leaders in Kenya signed a peace deal that allows for power-sharing. However, key details - such as when and if the presidential election should be run again and how authority will be shared between President Mwai Kibaki and newly named Prime Minister Raila Odinga - have yet to be announced. It is hoped that this agreement will bring an end to the violence that has plagued the country for more than two months.
Hundreds have been killed and thousands have been forced to flee their homes amid post-election violence in Kenya that broke out after the announcement of the victory of the incumbent, Mwai Kibaki, on December 30. The unrest has been attributed to political parties disputing the presidential results and allegations of vote-rigging by both Kibaki and his defeated opposition challenger, Raila Odinga.
News reports describe scenes of mob violence among Kikuyus and Luo, the ethnicities of Kibaki and Odinga, as well as indiscriminate acts of violence, vandalism, and looting.