Archive for ‘Latin America & Caribbean’

07/05/2015

Peace Lessons: How to Reduce Violence

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

By Robert J. Burrowes*

If you are interested in learning more about the meaning of, and the relationships among, direct, structural and cultural violence and how one peace studies scholar suggests we use the integrative power of nonviolence to address violence constructively, then I suggest you read the new book by historian, playwright and novelist Professor Timothy Braatz called ‘Peace Lessons’.

**Image: The St. Bartholomew's Day massacre of French Protestants, 1572 | Artist: François Dubois (1529–1584) Link back to Creator infobox template wikidata:Q369663| Wikimedia Commons

**The St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre of French Protestants, 1572 | Artist: François Dubois (1529–1584) Link back to Creator infobox template wikidata:Q369663| Wikimedia Commons

This book is impressive because it explains important aspects of peace and conflict theory, particularly that developed by Professor Johan Galtung.

It then applies key peace studies concepts to select historical events that are normally perceived as violent – John Brown’s struggle to end slavery in the United States, the battle at Little Bighorn in 1876, ‘World Slaughter II’, as Braatz calls it – as well as some key nonviolent resistance movements of the twentieth century: the toppling of various dictators and the US Civil Rights movement.

05/05/2015

Two Handbooks to Help States Tackle Terrorism

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

Terrorism continues to represent one of the greatest global challenges to international stability and security, and given the international nature of modern terrorism, no country is immune. To counter this threat, there are many important steps that States need to take, with establishing a strong legal system against terrorism key among them, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said on 4 May 2015.* 

UNODC

UNODC

In light of this, two new UNODC-developed handbooks – one on human rights and another on air and sea terrorism prevention – aim to assist States in strengthening their efforts against terrorist activities.

The guides are part of UNODC’s ongoing Counter-Terrorism Legal Training Curriculum, a knowledge-sharing platform designed to build capacity among national criminal justice officials to enhance their legal efforts against terrorism.

The Curriculum integrates training materials on related topics, such as money laundering and organized crime, addressing this scourge in a holistic manner.

This helps the target audience – including law enforcement officials such as police, prosecutors and judges; policymakers; and officials from departments such as Foreign Affairs, Justice and Interior – to better draft relevant laws and apply international treaties.

05/05/2015

UN Warns of ‘Tsunami’ of Electronic Waste ‘Rolling Out Over the World’

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

Geneva – The head of the United Nations body tasked with setting the global environmental agenda on 4 May 2015 stressed the need to limit the use of dangerous chemicals and to find a solution to the masses of electronic waste building up around the world, as a Conference of Parties to three major Conventions on the subject began in Geneva on 4 May 2015.

E-waste. Credit: ITU | Source: UN

Achim Steiner, Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), told journalists that the “tsunami of e-waste rolling out over the world” not only accounted for a large portion of the world’s non-recyclable “waste mountain” but also needed dealing with because many elements found in electronic equipment are potentially hazardous to people and the environment.*

05/05/2015

Every Four Minutes a Child Dies from a Traffic Accident – A World #SaveKidsLives Campaign

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

Each day some 500 children die from road traffic crashes, thousands more are injured and the situation is only getting worse, the United Nations on 4 May 2015 warned as it launched #SaveKidsLives, a global campaign to generate action to make streets safe for children.

Photo: WHO

Photo: WHO

According to the UN World Health Organization (WHO), every four minutes, a child dies from a traffic accident. For adolescents aged 15 to 17, road traffic injuries are the leading cause of death worldwide, with boys accounting for nearly twice as many road traffic deaths as girls.*

And one third of these deaths are children in cars but two thirds outside cars.

04/05/2015

Tobacco Kills Up to Half of its Users – More Key Facts

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

One in every 10 cigarettes, and many other tobacco products, consumed worldwide are illegal, making the illicit trade of tobacco products a major global concern from many perspectives, including health, legal, economic, governance and corruption, World Health Organization (WHO) says ahead of World No Tobacco Day 2015 to be marked on 31 May.

**Author: Häggström, Mikael.

**Common adverse effects of tobacco smoking | Author: Häggström, Mikael. “Medical gallery of Mikael Häggström 2014″. Wikiversity Journal of Medicine 1 (2). DOI:10.15347/wjm/2014.008. ISSN 20018762. | Wikimedia Commons

‘The tobacco industry and criminal groups are among those who profit from the illegal tobacco trade, leaving the public to pay the health and security costs.’

03/05/2015

World Water Week Journalist Grant

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

The Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) on 1 May 2015 opened the door to applications for the 2015 World Water Week Journalist Grant. The World Water Week will be held in Stockholm on 23-28 August 2015.

Planet Earth in dew, macro on leaf. Conceptual design. Elements of this image furnished by NASA. | Source: SIWI

Planet Earth in dew, macro on leaf. Conceptual design. Elements of this image furnished by NASA. | Source: SIWI

Are you passionate about water and development? Have you covered these topics in your work but want a chance to see more, learn more and interview major actors in the water community?*

Have you looked for an opportunity to report on a global water meeting, where world leaders, policy makers, and academics meet representatives from the private sector and civil society to discuss some of the world’s most urgent development issues? Apply for the World Water Week Journalist Grant!

SIWI offers three journalists from low or low-middle income nations the opportunity to visit Stockholm and World Water Week which takes place between 23-28 August 2015.

02/05/2015

Migrant Smuggling in Asia Generates Annual Value of $2 Billion for Criminal Groups

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

In a new report, UNODC warns that the smuggling of migrants poses a significant threat to Asia, generating an annual value of $2 billion for criminal groups and leading to deaths and human rights abuses.

UNODC

UNODC

The report, entitled Migrant Smuggling in Asia: Current Trends and Related Challenges, analyzes the smuggling of migrants in 28 states from the Middle East to the Pacific and finds that criminal networks are creatively exploiting gaps between demand and regular migration, with smuggling fees to get to some destinations now reported as high as $50,000.*

The report also stresses that a significant number of migrants use smugglers to cross borders in order to seek a better life, but end up in human trafficking situations. Far away from home and working illegally, smuggled migrants have little ability to assert basic rights and become vulnerable to abuse, trafficking and exploitation.

Southeast Asia continues to serve as an important source, transit and destination for migrant smuggling, with the majority of smuggling taking place within the region but with routes also reaching countries as far as Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United States.

01/05/2015

On International Day, ‘Jazz Means Courage, Standing Up for Freedom’

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

The top United Nations cultural official on 30 April 2015 said that artists across the globe have been drawn to the spontaneity and freedom of expression of jazz for over a century, as musicians and music lovers the world over celebrate International Jazz Day.

UN stamps commemorating International Jazz Day. Photo: UNPA

“In essence, jazz is a music of peace, and this has never been so important, to fight against new forms of hatred, racism and discrimination and to strengthen humanity as a single community, sharing a past and a destiny, said Irina Bokova, Director-General of the UN Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in a message to mark the International Day on 30 April 2015.

30/04/2015

Lack of Systems to Combat Antibiotic Resistance Poses ‘Major Threat’ to Public Health

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

Antibiotic resistance – when bacteria change so antibiotics no longer work in people who need them to treat infections – is now a major threat to public health, says a new United Nations report released on 30 April 2014.

Photo: WHO

The study, produced by the UN World Health Organization (WHO), is the first to look at antimicrobial resistance, including antibiotic resistance, globally, and provides the most comprehensive picture to date, incorporating data from 114 countries.*

28/04/2015

Building Global Support for Palestine Women Human Rights Defenders

by Baher Kamal

Human Wrongs Watch

By Mairead Maguire, Nobel Peace Laureate*

27 April 2015 – TRANSCEND Media Service

Mairead Maguire

Breaking the silence on Israel’s human rights abuse of Palestinians is the best way to help Palestinian women human rights defenders and peacemakers.

About 10 years ago Doctor Mona El-Farra, one of Palestine’s greatest woman human rights defenders, visited N. Ireland.

Dr. Mona lives in the occupied Gaza Strip, and she came to share with us the story of occupied Gaza and its people.

Many people in the audience were moved to tears on listening to the painful stories of ongoing collective punishment of war and bombardment by the Israeli military upon the civilian population of Gaza. The majority of Gaza’s Palestinians are children and under 21.

Collective punishment of a civilian population breaks the Geneva Conventions and is a war crime. What struck me was Dr. Mona’s comment that ‘every single person in Gaza is completely traumatized by so much violence and war.’

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