Human Rights

Novartis, the Swiss pharmaceutical company, will appear before the Indian Supreme Court Wednesday to appeal against a patent rejection for a popular cancer drug. A decision in favor of the company could have a devastating impact on cheap supplies of many kinds of generic drugs for poor patients.
Local government officials have the ability to track individual drivers in the U.S. in real time and take pictures of the occupants of their vehicles, with new "truly Orwellian" technology purchased from companies like Vigilant Solutions, according to new documents uncovered by the American Civil Liberties Union.
On the night of December 2-3, 1984, the Union Carbide pesticide factory in Bhopal, India leaked poisonous methyl iso cyanate into its densely populated neighborhood, killing 8,000 people in the immediate aftermath. 25 years later, Dow Chemical (which purchased Union Carbide in 2001) still refuses to clean up the site. But a new generation of Bhopal survivors is taking on the fight.
Mining companies operating in Peru are seeing increasing millions in profits as a result of the surge in international prices for metals, but few are contributing what is needed to alleviate the poverty of the people living in mining areas.
Retired retail executive Richard Goldman was astonished when he heard about the $27 billion pollution lawsuit against Chevron Corp. in Ecuador. SO he has created a nonprofit group, Ethos Alliance, that will use social-networking tools to spread word of the case and put pressure on Chevron.
A month after seven Indian states imposed severe restrictions on the sale of colas and other aerated drinks, the Coca-Cola company has become the target of a vigorous popular campaign in Uttar Pradesh, India's largest state.
Military contractors like Boeing, Halliburton and Lockheed, have become increasingly embedded with the Pentagon bureaucrats who give them lucrative work as the jailing of Darleen Druyun, a former U.S. Air Force weapons buyer, demonstrates.
On the presidential campaign trail, former Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani often promotes the installation of electronic monitoring devices at the border to stem illegal immigration, without mentioning that until a few months ago, he was partner in a company trying to market such technology.
Human Rights Watch has issued a report that harshly criticizes a single industry in the United States, concluding that the nation's meat packing industry has such bad working conditions that it violates basic human and worker rights.
The new century is starting in Porto Alegre. All kinds of people, each in their own ways, have been contesting and critiquing neo-liberal globalisation, and many of them will be gathering in this southern Brazilian city on 25-30 January for the first World Social Forum. This time they won't just be protesting -- as they were in Seattle, Washington, Prague and elsewhere -- against the world-wide injustices, inequalities and disasters created by the excesses of capitalism (see the article by Bernard Cassen).