Pro- choice protesters outside the Dail during the  debate on  the abortion / Protection of Life Bill. Photograph: Alan Betson / THE IRISH TIMES

The trenchant criticism by the UN Human Rights Committee, which published its concluding observations yesterday, places yet another dark cloud over Ir(...)

Palestinian medics bring  two babies injured when a UN school for refugees was allegedly hit by an Israeli tank shell, into the overcrowded emergency room of the Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahiya in the Gaza Strip today.  Photograph:  EPA 1:09

Gazan authorities said Israeli forces shelled a shelter at a UN-run school today, killing at least 15 people as the Palestinian death toll in the conf(...)

Iraqi families displaced by fighting in their home towns receive humanitarian aid at the Khazir refugee camp, near Erbil, northern Iraq,. Photograph: Kamal Akrayi/EPA

Militant group Islamic State has ordered all girls and women in and around Iraq’s northern city of Mosul to undergo female genital mutilation (FGM), t(...)

The UN Human Rights Committee report comes following questioning of an Irish Government delegation, led by Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald, on Ireland’s compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) in Geneval last week. Photograph: Eric Luke / The Irish Times

The “perpetrators” of symphysiotomy should be punished and prosecuted, the United Nations has said. In observations on Ireland’s human rights record, (...)

Palestinians search for victims under the rubble of a house which witnesses said was destroyed by an Israeli air strike during an Israeli ground offensive east of Khan Younis in  southern Gaza today. Photograph: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa /Reuters

Israel won a partial reprieve from the economic pain of its Gaza war today with the lifting of a US ban on commercial flights to Tel Aviv, as fighting(...)

Brothers of the El Agha family grieve their father who was killed after shelling in Khan Yunis, Gaza, yesterday. Photograph: Sergey Ponomarev/The New York Times

The Israeli security cabinet convened last night to consider a proposal to end the violence in Gaza, based on a five-day truce, during which intens(...)

European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso: on a trip to Israel last month he said the EU could offer a “special privileged partnership” to both Israel and a future Palestinian state. Photograph: Gil Cohen Magen/AFP/Getty Images.

Foreign policy moved to the top of the EU agenda this week following the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17.But while Tuesday’s meeting of forei(...)

US Secretary of State John Kerry meets Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in  Ramallah. Israeli forces pounded Gaza on Wednesday, meeting stiff resistance from Hamas Islamists and sending thousands of residents fleeing, as US Secretary of State John Kerry said on a visit to Israel ceasefire talks had made some progress. Photograph: Charles Dharapak/Reuters

As diplomatic shuttling intensified yesterday in an effort to secure a ceasefire to end the two-week conflict in Gaza, there was a public closing of r(...)

The UN Human Rights Council special session held in Geneva yesterday to discuss the human rights situation in the occupied Palestinian territory. Photograph: Martial Trezzini/EPA

Ireland yesterday joined other European Union countries in abstaining from a United Nations resolution setting up a commission of inquiry into Gaza, c(...)

Ireland has condemned the firing of missiles by Hamas and the ‘very high and unacceptable’ levels of civilian casualties by Israel at the an emergency debate at the UN Human Rights council in Geneva today. Photograph: EPA/Martial Trezzini

Ireland has condemned the firing of missiles by Hamas and the “very high and unacceptable” levels of civilian casualties by Israeli military attacks a(...)