Gender discrimination in India kills 239,000 girls under the age of five each year, according to a study released Monday.
The International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis said the causes of death were mainly due to unwanted child bearing and neglect. Over the past decade, an estimated 2.4 million girls under 5 lost their lives. That number doesn't include abortions of female fetuses, which has contributed to a gender gap of 63 million more boys than girls in India.
"Gender-based discrimination towards girls doesn't simply prevent them from being born, it may also precipitate the death of those who are born," wrote the study's co-researcher Christophe Guilmoto in the Lancet medical journal, according to CNN. "Gender equity is not only about rights to education, employment or political representation. It is also about care, vaccination, and nutrition of girls, and ultimately survival."
Nandita Saikia, the IIASA postdoctoral research scholar, said the worst affected parts of India are rural, agricultural areas with low education levels, high population densities, low socioeconomic development and high levels of fertility.
"As the regional estimates of excess deaths of girls demonstrate, any intervention to reduce the discrimination against girls in food and health care allocation should therefore target in priority regions of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh where poverty, low social development, and patriarchal institutions persist and investments on girls are limited," Saikia said.
India could do more to influence all these areas of concern simply by underwriting much of the education of girls, especially lower caste girls, right through school and higher education. Girls will than become more employable with potential for good incomes. This literally targets almost all the issues mentioned above.
Joseph Daniel Saucedo, 26, of Vista, Calif., was sentenced in federal court in San Diego County Friday to 20 years in prison and 20 years of supervised release for attempting to manipulate two children into sending him sexually explicit photos, and threatening to expose them if they didn't comply, according to a release from U.S. law enforcement.
"Obviously for an 11-year-old boy, it was quite a brave step to come forward.… I knew this wasn't a small feat for him to contact police. This was something where he had to go to his parents and tell them what's going on," Kelly said.
"Because of this young man, because he came forward and was so brave to do that, we were able to save [more] victims.… That's a hard thing for a kid to do. But he knew what the right thing was. He identified the risk there and made us aware."
According to the plea agreement, Saucedo posed as a teenage girl and struck up conversations with the 11-year-old boy using an online messaging app. In his disguise as 16-year-old "Amy," he attempted to coerce the boy to communicate with Amy's "friend," the 26-year-old Saucedo.
When the boy refused, "Amy" sent him a photo of his house and threatened him into relenting. When the two spoke on a video-chat app, Saucedo appeared nude, prompting the boy to hang up. The calls and threats continued, and at this point, the 11-year-old told his family what had been occurring and they went to police.
'Offenders will play on fear'
"A lot of the times in these types of cases the offenders will play on fear," said Kelly. Kelly said police contacted the social media platform, but didn't reveal which one.
"It could be anything from Facebook to Kik to WhatsApp, any platform. Their MO was always the same, they always used that fear factor," he said.
Police tracked down the user's IP address and account located in the United States, at which point they opened a joint investigation, working with RCMP, San Diego's Electronic Crimes Working Group, the U.S. Secret Service and U.S. Homeland Security.
"We were able to identify other victims the offender was going after and targeting," Kelly said.
Through additional investigations and search warrants, police identified nine other underage victims.
"Saucedo's indifference to his victims' apparent suffering included disregarding multiple victims' warnings that his contacts and demands were triggering suicidal thoughts," the release said.
Need to know social media risks
Kelly said the case holds lessons for parents about the importance of talking with their children about the risks of online chat.
"The real key for parents here is to have open communication with their kids, to ensure they know what platforms their kids are on and who they're speaking with online," said Kelly.
He said that as a parent, he feels as soon as a kid has touched a keyboard, it's time to have a frank discussion about the risks of social media platforms, and that kids should know that they shouldn't speak to anyone online that they don't know in real life.
"A true friend, someone who really values you, is never going to send you something that is questionable or ask you to do anything like that either. Once that takes place, don't just ignore, don't just cancel that friendship, let law enforcement know like this young man did."
Members of the Turkish national taekwondo squad have been embroiled in a scandal after a group sex photo, which supposedly shows them in a hotel room, emerged on social media.
The footage of the inappropriate scene immediately went viral, causing uproar on Turkish social media. Many users expressed disgust and some called for the athletes allegedly involved to be punished.
The picture could have been taken during the World Taekwondo Europe (WTE) European Championships in Kazan, Russia, where the Turkish team finished second winning three gold, four silver and two bronze medals.
Turkish national taekwondo federation has neither confirmed nor denied their athletes' involvement in the incident.
Prosecutors in Germany on Tuesday, May 15, brought charges against four people accused of running an illegal child pornography website from the undergrounds of the internet.
The website, which had international connections, had about 111,000 members in total, according to prosecutors.
The platform, called “Elysium,” was created near the end of 2016 where it was only accessible through the black market of the cyber world, a place often referred to as the “darknet” or “deepweb.”
In June 2017, German authorities arrested a man suspected of operating the website, which was launched at the end of 2016.
The suspects, all aged between 40 and 62, could face up to 15 years in prison if they are found guilty of sexual child abuse. An investigation into the platform’s members is still ongoing.
“The website had a platform with the title ‘Babies & Toddlers’ where members exchanged photos and video recordings of sexual abuse of children aged up to four years old,” Frankfurt prosecutors said in a statement obtained by Reuters.
One of the suspects was revealed to be a 62-year-old man from the Bavarian town of Landsberg am Lech. He was charged with sexual abuse of two children, aged 4 and 6. The children were made accessible by their father, an Austrian citizen, who had contacted the suspect through the website.
The father was also prosecuted in a separate child abuse case.
The charges in Germany come on the heels of a new study by the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) that revealed “shocking statistics” on children being “groomed, coerced and blackmailed into live-streaming their own sexual abuse.”
The 24-page study was done over a three-month period and looked at 2,082 images and videos from live-streamed child sexual abuse. IWF found that 98% of the media were of children aged 13 and under who recorded themselves over webcams, tablets, and mobile phones.
Out of those children, 28% were aged 10 or younger. The youngest victim was just 3 years old.
And did the 3 y/o record themself and post it online?
Other statistics from the report revealed that 18% of the abuse was listed as Category A, which is what the IWF classifies as the rape and sexual torture of children.
The imagery had been redistributed to third-party websites where 73% of the content appeared on dedicated child pornography forums. This indicated that the images had been shared with the intention of advertising paid downloads of videos, the report notes.
The case comes after U.S. law enforcement agencies seized Backpage.com—the largest child sex-trafficking website in America—as part of an enforcement action by the FBI in April. Nearly three-quarters of the cases submitted to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children relate to ads posted on Backpage.com.
Victims can sue networks, advertisers in USA
Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) helped to draft legislation passed by the Senate on March 21 that makes it easier for state prosecutors and victims of sex trafficking to sue social media networks, advertisers, and others that fail to keep exploitative materials off their platforms.
President Donald Trump signed the bill into law on April 11. The legislation, featured prominently in the popular Netflix documentary “I am Jane Doe,” amends the Communications Decency Act, which has shielded website operators from state criminal charges or civil liability if they facilitate sex ads or prostitution.
“Human trafficking is a modern form of the oldest and most barbaric type of exploitation,” Trump said. “It has no place in our world.”
The government argues that the bill, which went up for debate in parliament on Monday, will better protect children under the age of 15 by including a new provision – “Article 2,” which states that rape and sexual assault can result from an “abuse of vulnerability” of the victim.
While other provisions included in the bill – such as the new on-the-spot fines for street harassment such as wolf-whistles and cat-calls and the extension of the statute of limitations on sex crimes from 20 to 30 years – have been hailed as progressive, “Article 2” has relaunched the debate on child sex and the age of consent.
While it is currently illegal in France for an adult to have “sexual contact” with a minor under the age of 15, it is not considered rape if the victim was not coerced.
Consequently, if the child is groomed and concedes to any form of deviant or group sex, she, or he, is not considered to have been raped. They are considered to have been competent to make a decision at 14, or 12, or 10 to have sex with an adult, or several. The naivety and stupidity of this is spectacular.
Gender equality minister Marlène Schiappa, the driving force behind the bill, attempted to rectify this by setting the age of consent at 15, but the proposed clause was scrapped after the State Council, the country’s highest administrative court, said it would infringe an adult’s presumption of innocence and be unconstitutional.
What an asinine, narrow-minded decision. Was no-one on the State Council thinking of the children when they made this decision? Children are voiceless! Is there no-one who will stand up and be their voice? Why is it always about adult's rights and never children's rights?
The government was therefore forced to amend the draft text so as to allow judges to take into account a child’s “vulnerability”.
Critics of the bill, however, say that the current version of the text does not go far enough and blurs the lines between a misdemeanour offence and rape.
It also inevitably means that the victim will have to somehow prove they did not consent to sex.
On Monday, about 250 French psychologists, social workers, doctors, lawyers and celebrities penned an open letter to president Emmanuel Macron asking him to revise or drop the controversial provision, which they say does not explicitly state that anyone under the age of 15 cannot consent to sex with an adult.
Most critics say they do not want a repeat of last year’s high-profile “Pontoise case,” in which prosecutors refused to charge a man with rape after he – aged 22 at the time – had sex with an 11-year-girl because they could not prove he had forced her into sex.
France is currently one of the only European countries which does not have a minimum age for sexual consent.
Mrs Schiappa on Tuesday denounced the “disinformation” campaign launched by critics to discredit the bill, which she insists will “punish all acts of sexist and sexual violence”.
By Brendan McFadden - firstname.lastname@example.org
A man who sexually abused a child 20 years ago has been jailed.
Today, (16 May) Judge Lowe sentenced him to 17 years in prison including a further year on licence.
The court heard how it took McClennon’s victim years to build up the courage to report the incidents to police after he convinced her that no one would believe her and told her it was ‘their secret’.
The abuse began in 1997 in Peterborough and continued for about two years while the victim was aged between 10 and 12. On two occasions McClennon used sleeping pills to drug his victim before abusing her.
Detective Constable Lisa Winterburn said: “The victim was very brave in coming forward to the police. Regardless of the passage of time, we will always take reports of child sex abuse very seriously.”
Information and advice, including how to report recent and historical sexual abuse is available online. If you are worried about a child, call police on 101, or if you think a child is at immediate risk of abuse call 999.
Iain Lee has revealed the sexual abuse he suffered at the age of 8 ruined his relationships with older men throughout his life.
Taking to Twitter on Wednesday, the star went on to confess the incident made him feel 'ashamed, guilty and afraid', and 'messed up' his future connections to authoritative male figures.
He wrote to his 98,000 followers: 'What happened to me as a kid didn't last long at all and I wasn't raped. In fact, what happened was very low key compared to many many others.
'Part of me is terrified that when people find out the extent of what happened I will somehow be 'in trouble' or called out for exaggerating or trying to profit or making something out of nothing.'
However, recalling the devastating impact the event had on his life, he said: 'All I know is that what happened to me over a very short time caused me to feel ashamed, guilty, afraid and unable to tell my parents.
'I was 8. It's messed up my relationships to this day with older men and men in authority.'
Assuring he will only ever be honest with his followers, he continued: 'I've just been replying to a letter from the Scouts and its made me feel very, very nervous. Feel sick actually.
He wrapped up his emotional post by writing: 'PS and now I feel shit and I'm crying so I'm gonna watch Evil Genius to cheer me up.'
Iain revealed he was sexually abused as a child by a Scout leader earlier this week; appearing on the documentary, which airs on Thursday, Iain explained that his abuse has 'weighed' on him for 35 years.
He said: 'A lot of my depression comes around self-loathing, shame and guilt. How do I say this? There was a bit of sexual abuse that went on as a kid. A scout master and stuff, which kind of weighed heavily on me.
'It is the most horrendous messed-up scenario, it was humiliating and it was shameful, and I remember getting home to my mum and dad and never telling them. I never told them.
Having never told his parents about the abuse, the comedian, who stars on the show opposite Trisha Goddard, Adam Deacon and MP Kevan Jones, revealed that staying silent forced him to contemplate taking his own life.
He began: 'I was out walking the dog and we were in these woods and I just thought, "F***, this is really off the beaten track, I could get a bit of rope. I could hang myself here and no-one would find me for ages."
'And I really allowed myself to go off into this fantasy.'