Protests after seven-year-old raped in Delhi

Indian security forces walk inside the government school where a seven years old girl student was sexually assaulted, in New Delhi on August 10, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 11 August 2018
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Protests after seven-year-old raped in Delhi

  • Some 19,000 attacks on minors were reported in 2016, but activists say vast numbers are never brought to police attention
  • In January an eight-year-old girl died after being kidnapped, drugged and gang-raped for days in northern Jammu and Kashmir

NEW DELHI: Scores of angry parents protested outside a government-run school in New Delhi on Friday after a seven-year-old girl was allegedly raped by an electrician on its premises, police said.
The incident comes on the heels of sex-abuse scandals at two children’s homes that have sparked widespread outrage.
The latest case came to light after the family noticed the child bleeding and lodged a police complaint on Thursday.
“A medical examination of the victim has been conducted. The results reveal a clear indication of sexual assault,” Madhur Verma, a spokesman for Delhi Police, told AFP.
The 37-year-old electrician was arrested after being identified by the victim, Verma added.
Local media reports said the suspect, who had been hired by the school just a month ago, pulled the girl into a secluded water-pump room just as she was leaving to go home.
India has a grim record of sexual violence. Some 19,000 attacks on minors were reported in 2016, but activists say vast numbers are never brought to police attention due to the social stigma attached to sexual crimes.
In January an eight-year-old girl died after being kidnapped, drugged and gang-raped for days in northern Jammu and Kashmir.
The case led to the introduction of the death penalty for those convicted of raping girls younger than 12.


Philippine police: Gunmen kill 9 people who occupied farm

Updated 21 October 2018
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Philippine police: Gunmen kill 9 people who occupied farm

  • At least two of the victims may have fired back at the attackers because spent pistol and shotgun casings were found in the area
  • The National Federation of Sugar Workers condemned the killings of its members

BACOLOD, Philippines: Gunmen killed nine members of a farmers’ group who occupied part of a privately owned sugarcane plantation in a central Philippine province, police said Sunday.
The victims were resting in a hut Saturday night when about 10 gunmen opened fire, police said. At least four farmers survived the attack at the plantation in Sagay city in Negros Occidental province, which has a history of bloody land feuds.
“There are groups fighting over that land,” Sagay police Chief Inspector Roberto Mansueto said.
At least two of the victims may have fired back at the attackers because spent pistol and shotgun casings were found in the area, Mansueto said.
“Witnesses say they heard only a few initial shots. Apparently the victims were just being threatened,” Mansueto told reporters. “But later there seemed to have been an exchange of fire.”
The National Federation of Sugar Workers condemned the killings of its members, who included four women and two minors. The group said the victims were forced to plant vegetables and root crops to feed their families on idle land that’s covered by the government’s land reform program but remained undistributed to poor farmers.
Two other peasant leaders belonging to the federation were killed in Sagay city last December and in February this year by suspected pro-government forces, the group said. It said that about 45 farmers asserting their land rights have been killed on Negros island under President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration.
Instead of offering an effective land reform program, Duterte’s government “red baits those who assert their rights to the land,” the group said, referring to pronouncements by civilian and military officials linking protesting farmers to communist guerrillas.
There was no immediate government reaction. Regional police chief Superintendent John Bulalacao condemned Saturday’s attack and said everything was being done to ensure the rapid arrest of the killers.
In September 1985, government forces opened fire on protesters, many of them farmers, in Negros Occidental province as they were commemorating the 1972 declaration of martial law by then-President Ferdinand Marcos. Several died in an event that left-wing activists still mark each year.