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Human rights defenders: we need them more than ever!

Protecting and enabling human rights defenders during the COVID-19 pandemic is not just an obligation on states, but it is key to ensuring that efforts to recover from this crisis are effective, inclusive, respect human rights, and leave no one behind. Authorities must not use restrictions imposed during the pandemic to suppress relevant information uncomfortable for the government or use the situation as a pretext to crack down on critics and human rights defenders.

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The weekly briefing, 18 October 2016: DR Congo government delays presidential election, Venezuelan president passes 2017 budget by decree, Iraqi government and Kurdish forces launch campaign to retake Mosul

Political and security risk updates from around the world. This week: DR Congo government announces it is delaying next month’s presidential election until 2018; Venezuelan president passes government’s 2017 budget without approval of congress; Iraqi government and Kurdish forces launch long-awaited campaign to retake Mosul from Islamic State; and more.

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Drones, special forces and mercenaries: Remote-control warfare briefing #05

Monthly briefing from the Open Briefing intelligence unit on developments in remote-control warfare. This month: increasing number of mercenaries in foreign conflicts from Balkans region; state and non-state hacker groups launch cyber attacks on Israel in response to Operation Protective Edge; US officials grapple with political and economic costs of NSA’s surveillance activities; and more.

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