from Middle east and north africa
National Democratic Party (NDP) representative Hassan Nash'at el-Qassas is said to have called for force to be used against those calling for political reform.
Amnesty International has called on the Iraqi authorities to investigate allegations that security forces tortured hundreds of Sunni detainees at a secret prison in Baghdad.
The first two men to be officially executed since 2005 had been convicted by military courts of charges of 'collaboration' with the Israeli military and involvement in murder.
The writer was acquitted of charges of insulting the judicial authorities, after more than four months in detention.
The authorities have been urged to allow peaceful protests after police violently repressed another anti-government demonstration in Cairo this week.
An appeal court is to decide whether to overturn a landmark ruling allowing the children of Samira Soueidan to obtain Lebanese nationality.
Hafez Ibrahim was sentenced to death in Yemen in 2005 at the age of 17. He was pardoned two years later after the organization campaigned on his behalf.
Hunger strikers protesting against their detention without trial are among those who have faced intimidation after visiting refugee camps in Algeria.
Over 100 people were killed in suicide bomb and other attacks mounted by armed groups in and around Baghdad in the last week.
A leaked classified US military video appears to show the 2007 attacks in which up to a dozen people, including a journalist and his driver, were killed.
The scale of the devastation caused by aerial bombardments of the northern Yemeni region of Sa’dah is revealed in images obtained by Amnesty International.
Scores of Tabu families have lost their homes since November 2009 and it appears that many more evictions may be planned.
More than 90 people were detained in Cairo for taking part in demonstrations calling for political reform on Tuesday.
High-ranking officials in the de facto administration have signalled their intention to execute those convicted of 'collaboration' with Israel and 'murder'.
Recent developments suggest that the authorities are once more using executions to quell political unrest, intimidate the population and send a signal that dissent will not be tolerated.
The men were arrested after they helped Hussain 'Ali Hassan al-Sahlawi, who had been shot and left unconscious by a security official in Karzakan.
Independent experts will monitor domestic investigations into war crimes and other violations of international humanitarian and human rights law.
Police opened fire with live ammunition in the city of Ar Raqqah, as an estimated 5,000 people gathered to celebrate the Kurdish New Year.
The authorities have effectively barred two human rights organizations from presenting their reports on the harassment of former political prisoners to the media.
On World Water Day Israeli authorities have been urged to end discriminatory practices against Palestinians in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.