Attempted Suicides Rock Manus Island: Daily Brief

A wave of attempted suicides among asylum seekers sent offshore by Australia; election protests continue in Indonesia; Yemen crisis; Thailand's unending repression; new concerns about tech and privacy in China; Brunei should repeal its draconian new anti-gay law; and plans to expand 2022 World Cup to Saudi Arabia fall flat. 

Several asylum seekers on Nauru and Manus Island have attempted suicide in recent days amid rising desperation since Australia's election result. Australia sends asylum seekers arriving by boat overseas to Nauru and Manus Island, where they are detained in inhumane conditions. Asylum seekers had hoped that a change in government would help them, but their hopes of change are now dashed. 

Six people have been killed and 200 injured during mass rallies in Jakarta against the re-election of Indonesian President Joko Widodo. Police fired tear gas at protesters during clashes on Wednesday, and police deny reports that officers used live ammunition. Protesters hurled fireworks and rocks at police during one stand-off. 

Three members of the UK Parliament have written to the UK's Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, thanking him for his efforts to secure peace in Yemen. But curiously, the letter does not mention UK arms exports to the Saudi-led coalition, which have helped fuel the war and subsequent humanitarian disaster engulfing Yemen. 

Since Thailand’s military seized power five years ago, the country has faced unending repression of fundamental rights and freedoms.

Early last year the Chinese owner of the dating app Grindr gave Beijing-based engineers access to personal information of millions of Americans. The data misstep will again raise concerns about privacy, tech, and China. 

Brunei should immediately repeal its newly enacted penal code, which imposes death by stoning for extramarital and gay sex, among others infringements of human rights. 

And finally, FIFA's plans to expand the Qatar 2022 Football World Cup to neighboring (and fellow human rights abusing) countries including Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain are reportedly over.