Prominent Saudi family urges West to help free detained children

KONFRONTASI-Western governments must demand that their ally Saudi Arabia release the children of a former top Saudi security official who fled to Canada after the crown prince took power three years ago, the family told the Financial Times.

The children of Saad Aljabri - daughter, Sarah, 20, and son, Omar, 21 - were allegedly taken by Saudi security forces in March from their home in Riyadh and have not been heard from since, a son told the newspaper in a report published on Wednesday.

Racism has no place in a civilized society

By. Shamsi Ali* 

OPINION-The killing of George Floyd and some others before him by the use of excessive force by the police officers uncovered the very sickness of our society, which I call an original sin of this nation. 

Racism is in fact the very first crime committed in the history of mankind. It reminds us of the rejection of Iblis (devil) who is considered the master of all evils to prostrate to Adam to respect when he was commanded to do so by the Almighty. 

Minneapolis city council pledges to disband police; Trump lashes out at NFL

KONFRONTASI-Minneapolis city council members pledged to abolish the police force whose officer knelt on the neck of a dying George Floyd, as the biggest civil rights protests in more than 50 years demanded a transformation of U.S. criminal justice.

Demonstrations have swept a country slowly emerging from the coronavirus lockdown in the two weeks since Floyd, an unarmed black man, 46, died after choking out the words “I can’t breathe” under the knee of a white police officer.

Indra Ketaren: President of Indonesia Gastronomic Association

Indra Ketaren was born in Medan and brought up in Bremen, Germany; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and in Jakarta. Growing up in Europe, his family often traveled around the European Union and Eastern Europe. After studying international relations at the Socio-Political Faculty of Pajajaran University in Bandung from 1976 to 1982, Indra worked in the Indonesian Foreign Service and in the commodities and trade financing import/export sector.

Bangladesh orders probe after deadly fire at COVID-19 facility

KONFRONTASI-Authorities in Bangladesh have launched an investigation after a fire swept through a makeshift coronavirus isolation unit in the capital, Dhaka, killing at least five people, according to local media.

The Fire Service and Civil Defence on Thursday formed a four-member committee to investigate the blaze at the isolation unit in the United Hospital located in the posh Gulshan area of the capital.

Nigerian military unlawfully detain children at rehabilitation centre for militants: Amnesty

KONFRONTASI-The Nigerian military are unlawfully detaining boys and men at a rehabilitation centre for alleged members of the Islamist militant group Boko Haram, Amnesty International said in a report released on Wednesday.

In the latest allegations of rights abuses since Boko Haram began its insurgency in Nigeria’s northeast, Amnesty criticised Operation Safe Corridor, a programme that receives financial and technical support from the European Union, Britain, the United States and the U.N. International Organization for Migration.

France, Italy, Belgium act to stop use of hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19 on safety fears

KONFRONTASI-France, Italy and Belgium acted to halt the use of hydroxychloroquine to treat patients suffering from COVID-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus, amid questions about the safety of the generic anti-malaria drug.

France on Wednesday cancelled a decree allowing hospital doctors to dispense the medicine, while the Italian Medicine Agency (AIFA) suspended authorization to use hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19 outside clinical trials.

North India sizzles as temperature touches 50C

KONFRONTASI-India is wilting under a heatwave, with the temperature in places reaching 50 degrees Celsius (122 degrees Fahrenheit) and the capital enduring its hottest May day in nearly 20 years.

The hot spell is projected to scorch northern India for several more days, the Meteorological Department said on Tuesday, "with severe heatwave conditions in isolated pockets".

As global temperatures rise, heatwaves are a regular menace in the country, particularly in May and June. Last year, dozens of people died.

Rouhani urges cooperation as newly elected Parliament convenes

KONFRONTASI-Iran has held the opening session of its new Parliament under strict health protocols, more than three months after an election in February was swept by conservative candidates.

During the first session of the 290-member body on Wednesday, the new MPs were sitting at a secure distance, with some wearing face masks in line with physical distancing rules imposed to limit the spread of coronavirus in one of the Middle Eastern countries hit hardest by the pandemic.

Hong Kong’s leader reaffirms new law would not harm rights, freedoms

KONFRONTASI - Hong Kong’s leader Carrie Lam has reiterated that the new national security law proposed by Beijing would not affect rights and freedoms in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory, amid a wave of protests over the bill.

Lam said during a regular news conference on Tuesday that the bill would not have to raise concern.