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Tuesday, Sep 27th

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We were forced to work at Western-run mine, say migrants who fled Eritrea

Eritrea mineBemnet Negash never got to say a proper goodbye to his family. In February 2006, government officials arrived at his school in the highlands of Eritrea and put him and his classmates on a bus to a military training camp. He was 20 years old, and still at school because a childhood illness had interrupted his education.

Bemnet’s father heard what was happening and rushed to the school. “He tried to pass to me my medication and some money through a window of the bus on which I was being taken away, but it was not possible,” said Bemnet in an affidavit filed with a Canadian court last year.

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US slams Russia over 'barbarism' in Syria

US blames Russia for Syrian barbarismThe United States called Russia's action in Syria "barbarism" while Moscow's UN envoy said ending the war "is almost an impossible task now" as government forces relentlessly bombed the besieged city of Aleppo.

The United Nations Security Council met on Sunday at the request of the United States, Britain and France to discuss the escalation of fighting in Aleppo following the announcement on Thursday of an offensive by the Syrian army to retake the embattled northern city.

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Australian refugee camp reports detail harrowing accounts of sexual abuse and self-harm

Nauru camp horrorsChild and adult refugees held on Nauru under Australia’s offshore detention regime are continuing to report allegations of sexual abuse and engage in self-harm, new leaked documents reveal.

The new incident reports, seen by the Guardian, include a harrowing account of the alleged rape of a refugee, who refused to report the encounter to Nauruan police. The reports also tell of children stubbing out cigarettes on their arms, trying to jump off buildings and attempting suicide by other means.

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President Barack Obama plans 30% increase in refugees admitted to U.S.

Obama to increase number of refugees admitted to USPresident Barack Obama's administration plans to increase the number of worldwide refugees accepted into the United States next year to at least 110,000 -- a nearly 30 percent jump from those welcomed in 2016.

Secretary of State John Kerry briefed Congress on Tuesday about the White House decision. Obama's plan for the 2017 fiscal year, beginning Oct. 1, would accept 110,000 refugees fleeing persecution and conflict throughout the world -- a nearly 60 percent increase over the 2015 fiscal year.

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How Israel aims to redefine 'ethnic cleansing

How Isreal redefines ethnic cleansingOn one level, an incendiary video posted by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the weekend looked suspiciously like an own goal.

In it, Netanyahu argues that a Palestinian demand to dismantle Jewish settlements amounts to the "ethnic cleansing" of some 650,000 Jews living in the occupied territories, in violation of international law.

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Claims of Syria's chlorine-gas use to be investigated

Syria Chlorine gas use investigatedThe world's chemical weapons watchdog will investigate the suspected use of chlorine gas in an opposition area of the Syrian city of Aleppo, calling reports of the latest gas attack disturbing.

The Security Council is also due to discuss a report by the United Nations and the watchdog group, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), that blames Syrian government forces for previous toxic gas attacks.

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Palestinians paying thousands in bribes to leave Gaza

Palestininas paying bribes to leave GazaEgyptian officers are asking for bribes of up to $10,000 from Palestinians in Gaza desperate to leave the besieged coastal enclave, according to Gaza brokers who coordinate the bribe payments, former Palestinian border officials and travellers.  

Typically, an adult in Gaza must pay a bribe of $3,000 to get permission from Egypt to cross the border, two Palestinian brokers, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Al Jazeera. The brokers said that they took a 20 percent cut of the bribe, sending 80 percent to the Egyptian soldier or officer who coordinated it.

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