Episode
June 5, 2019

Why are Syria’s hospitals under attack?

The Stream discusses attacks on Syrian healthcare facilities, a social media warning from Bahrain, and police raids on Australian media.
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Attack on Syrian hospitals
After repeated attacks on hospitals, doctors in Idlib are no longer sharing the coordinates of medical organisations with the UN. Location sharing was part of a UN effort to reduce civilian casualties in Syria's war. But over the past month, Syria and Russia have bombed at least 25 medical facilities in the country’s north. In an open letter decrying the bombings, prominent doctors as well as Nobel Laureates criticised the "deliberate and systematic targeting" of healthcare infrastructure and staff. Why are such attacks allowed to continue, and what impact is it having on Syrian communities?   

Bahrain warns legal action for following anti-government social media
Bahrain is warning its citizens to think twice before following anti-government accounts on social media. The country's ministry of interior sent a text message late last week to Bahraini phones saying citizens could face legal action for “following accounts which are biased or incite discord”. Free expression advocates say the move is part of a broader government campaign to silence the influence of online dissenters. How are Bahraini activists responding?  


Australia media raids
On Wednesday, federal police in Australia raided the offices of the country's public broadcaster ABC in search of information regarding a series of reports it published in 2017. "The Afghan Files" alleged Australian special forces of committed unlawful deaths in Afghanistan, and police suspect those reports revealed classified information. This is the second such raid to take place in Australia this week. On Tuesday, police searched the home of News Corp Australia journalist Annika Smethurst whose reporting focused on government surveillance of Australian citizens. What impact will the raids have on Australian media and press freedom?


On this episode of The Stream, we're joined by: 
Said Yousif AlMuhafdah @SAIDYOUSIF
Human rights activist
salam-dhr.org

Fatima Yazbek @FatimaYazbek1
Human rights activist
gidhr.org

Zaher Sahloul @sahloul
Co-Founder and President, MedGlobal
medglobal.org

Peter Charley
Executive Producer, Investigative Unit, Al Jazeera English

Read more:
Syria, Russia air attacks hit Idlib's hospitals – Al Jazeera
Bahrain says following opposition social media could result in legal action - Reuters
Australia: Police raid ABC headquarters over Afghanistan stories - Al Jazeera

 

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