The United Nations special envoy Razali Ismail failed to persuade Burma's military junta to release detained pro-democracy leader Aung Sun Suu Kyi. Suu Kyi was recently placed under house arrest after being discharged from the hospital after undergoing major surgery. According to the Washington Post, Suu Kyi was held for three months in an undisclosed location before her surgery and has been under house arrest since returning from the hospital.
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan urged Burma's junta to free Suu Kyi. According to the Washington Post, Annan stated, "The three-year-old home-grown process of national reconciliation, as understood by the United Nations, has come to a complete halt" due to Suu Kyi's arrest and "unless the parties concerned are able to engage in substantive dialogue, the international community will have to conclude that the home-grown national reconciliation process no longer exists."
Suu Kyi also endured house arrest from 1989 to 1995 after she emerged as a leader of the pro-democracy opposition movement. The military regime refused to honor the results of the 1990 election during which Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) garnered an overwhelming majority of the popular vote.
7/27/2015 Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell Blocked Efforts to Defund Planned Parenthood - An attempt in the Senate to defund Planned Parenthood by Mike Lee (R-UT) was blocked this weekend by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). Lee tried to attach the elimination of federal funds for Planned Parenthood to a vote for highway legislation, a move which was rejected by McConnell as out of order.
Republican legislators have redoubled their efforts to block funding for Planned Parenthood since the release of two heavily edited clandestine videos of different PPFA employees taken without their knowledge. . . .
7/24/2015 Katherine Spillar Urges Cleveland to Dramatically Increase Hiring of Women Police to Mitigate Police Violence - In a well-received speech at the City Club of Cleveland today, Katherine Spillar, Executive Director of the Feminist Majority Foundation urged Cleveland city officials to dramatically increase the hiring of women police officers as a way to decrease police brutality incidents.
Following a number of high profile police killings in Cleveland of African Americans, and an eight-month investigation by the US Attorney's office of the Northern District of Ohio, the City of Cleveland has now entered into a Consent Decree that requires numerous reforms in how the city oversees and investigates police operations, including training in use of force.
"Among the most important reforms mandated by the consent decree - and the most easily overlooked - are the changes the Cleveland Division of Police must make in its recruitment and hiring practices,
said Spillar. . . .