Nonviolent action around the world – 9 February 2010 (Part 2)

February 9, 2010
Singapore Democrats

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EUROPE
Belarus: Paint sprayed over car of Andzelika Borys, car’s tires punctured
By: Charter 97, February 6, 2010
Activists of the Union of Poles in Belarus which is not recognized by the authorities called that a pre-planned provocation. On February 6 overnight the unknown punctured tyres and splashed blue paint on two cars owned by the Union of Poles headed by Andzelika Borys.
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Romania: Human rights begin at school
By: Claudia Ciobanu, Human Rights Tribune, February 6, 2010
A textbook on human rights activism, being introduced in Romanian schools this year, steers away from preaching and uses interviews with global and local rights activists to suggest how young people may get involved. The Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Mexican attorney Digna Ochoa and Czech playwright Vaclav Havel are some of the people interviewed for the book ‘Speak Truth to Power’ by Kerry Kennedy.
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Belarus: Internet cafes require presentation of passport
By: Charter 97, February 5, 2010
The Ministry of Communications says visitors of Internet cafe will have to show their passports for identification. According to Interfax, this was told journalists at a press conference given by minister of communication and informatization of Belarus Mikalai Pantsyalei. He said, “as far as I understand, Internet users in Internet clubs will have to show an ID, because the decree obliges Internet clubs to identification not a user’s device but persons.”
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Ukraine: Making democracy a going concern in Kiev
By: Richard Boudreaux, WSJ, February 5, 2010
Want to ensure a bigger draw for your lackluster candidate? In Ukraine, just contact Vladimir Boyko and he’ll rent you a crowd. Mr. Boyko says his company, Easy Work, has assembled a database of several thousand students and can mobilize them on a day’s notice to turn up at demonstrations anywhere in Kiev, stand for hours at a time, and cheer or jeer on cue.
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Russia: Anti-government protest covered by bloggers, ignored by media
By: Vadim Isakov, Global Voices, February 2, 2010
At least 7,000 protesters gathered on the streets of Kaliningrad, the country’s westernmost city, on January 30 to demand, among other things, the resignation of the regional governor Georgy Boos and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. But don’t count on the leading Russian media outlets to tell you about it.
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TOP

 

MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA
Israeli military arrests Spanish activist in Ramallah
By: Latin America Herald Tribute, February 8, 2010
Two activists, a Spaniard and an Australian, were arrested Sunday in an Israeli army raid on a house in the West Bank city of Ramallah, which is under the control of the Palestinian National Authority, or PNA.
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Egypt arrests Brotherhood members
By: Al Jazeera, February 8, 2010
Egyptian security forces have detained three of the Muslim Brotherhood’s senior leaders and at least 10 other members. A police official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he is not allowed to speak to the media, said they were arrested for engaging in banned political activity.
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Iran: Three million protesters anticipated at Thursday rally
By: LA Times, February 8, 2010
The 22nd day of the Persian calendar month of Bahman, the date 31 years ago when Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini declared Iran an Islamic republic, is traditionally a time for official patriotic fervor and the unveiling of national achievements.
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Iran: Torture of Kazem Rezaei in Ministry of Intelligence Detention Center
By: Iran Human Rights Voice, February 8, 2010
Three months after the detention of Kazem Rezaei, a student from Shiraz University, his trial was held on Sunday, January 31, in the Revolutionary Court while signs of torture were still visible on his body. Mr. Rezaei is a Mechanical Engineering major in Shiraz University, and a well-known student activist in this university.
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Iran ‘jails opposition leader Mohsen Aminzadeh’
By: BBC News, February 8, 2010
An Iranian opposition leader has been jailed for six years for his role in the unrest following June’s disputed presidential election, reports say. Mohsen Aminzadeh was convicted of organising protests, disturbing security and spreading propaganda against the system, his lawyer said.
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Iran arrests seven ahead of revolution anniversary
By: AFP, February 7, 2010
Iran said on Sunday it has arrested seven people for allegedly planning to provoke riots on February 11, the day the nation marks the anniversary of its 1979 Islamic revolution.
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Iran: Opposition and hard-liners get ready for 22 Bahman confrontations
By: LA Times, February 7, 2010
Iran’s hard-line government and the green-themed opposition are gearing up for another confrontation Thursday, this time on the 22nd day of the Persian calendar month of Bahman, the 31st anniversary of the Islamic Revolution.
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Internet down in Iran ahead of demos
By: AFP, February 7, 2010
Iran said on Sunday its Internet connections will remain slow this week due to technical problems, ahead of anticipated protests by opposition supporters. Connections have been slow since last week and some email accounts have been unavailable for several hours each day.
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Iran detains seven suspected of ‘spying’ for U.S.
By: RFE, February 7, 2010
Iran’s state media says Tehran has arrested seven people allegedly linked to RFE/RL’s Radio Farda and accused some of them of working for U.S. spy agencies. State radio and the official IRNA news agency reported today that the suspects played a key role in provoking protesters during a violent antigovernment demonstration in Tehran in late December.
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The lies of Iran, in pictures
By: Joshua Prager, LA Times, February 7, 2010
On June 20, a young Iranian woman was shot dead at one of the mass protests that followed the contested re- election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Millions of people around the world watched video of Neda Agha-Soltan hemorrhaging on Tehran’s Karegar Street, and hers became the tragic, beautiful and galvanizing face of the reform movement in Iran.
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Iran’s police chief warns against potential protests
By: CNN, February 6, 2010
Iran’s police chief warned Saturday that security forces will firmly confront “illegal” gatherings on the anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution, a semi-official news agency reported. Ismail Ahmadi Moghaddam told semi-official news agency ILNA that it is “natural” that security forces carry out what he called their responsibility if security is threatened or if “sacred morals” are insulted on the “pretext” of criticism and protest.
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Iraq: New media rules reflect return to authoritarianism
By: Committee to Protect Journalists, February 4, 2010
An Iraqi government plan to impose restrictive rules on broadcast news media represents an alarming return to authoritarianism, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. CPJ denounced the rules and called on Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and his government to abandon their repressive plan.
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ARTICLES OF INTEREST
Leaders walk in the shoes of a refugee
By: OneWorld, February 8, 2010
Some of the world’s influential leaders had the chance to experience life as a refugee during an annual economic summit last week — for one hour they shared the suffering of 42 million people who have been forced to leave their homes by conflict or natural disaster. The simulation was put together by the United Nations High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR) and the Crossroads Foundation, an organization working to join private business and humanitarian aid.
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Special rapporteurs regret mechanisms to control media
By: El Universal, February 5, 2010
The Special Rapporteurs for Freedom of Expression of the Organization of American States (OAS), the United Nations (UN),  and the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights (ACHPR), as well as the Representative on Freedom of the Media for the Organization for Security and Cooperation (OSCE) complained of increasing violence against journalists and the use of “illicit mechanisms” by some governments to control the media outlets.
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Sit-ins changed everything
By: Andrew B. Lewis, Statesman, February 5, 2010
The “sixties” were born on Feb. 1, 1960, 50 years ago this week, when four African American college students staged the first sit-in at a segregated lunch counter in Greensboro, N.C. Since then, the mythology of the ’60s has dominated the idea of youthful activism.
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Invest in strategy
By: New Tactics, January 26, 2010
Just like riots, spontaneous acts of defiance and improvised strings of actions are mere brush fires: quickly ignited, quickly extinguished. When you’re always reacting, you end up disempowered. Civil resistance is not magic. It may succeed or it may fail. But don’t leave it to chance. Strategy is a wise investment.
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NEWS IN OTHER LANGUAGES
Trois ans et demi de prison pour une écrivaine agressée devenue “agresseur” By: RSF, February 5, 2010
Reporters sans frontières dénonce la décision des magistrats d’une cour de Hanoi qui ont condamné, le 5 février 2010, à trois ans et demi de prison l’écrivaine et militante des droits de l’homme Tran Khai Thanh Thuy. Les accusations portées contre elle et son mari, Do Ba Tan, ont été montées de toutes pièces par la police, comme le démontre clairement une analyse des preuves utilisées par l’accusation.
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“Le Turkménistan et les droits de l’homme”
By: Alain Délétroz, Les Echos, February 1, 2010
Le Président du Turkménistan effectue une visite d’Etat en France. Ne placer sa visite que sous l’angle commercial serait une erreur indigne de la République. Gurbanguly Malikkulievich Berdimukhamedov vient à Paris cette semaine… Le Président du Turkménistan nous fait l’honneur de répondre à une invitation de Nicolas Sarkozy et gratifie la France d’une visite d’Etat.
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NOTICES
Call for nominations for Gwangju Prize for Human Rights Award 2010
By: Subash Adhikari, Peace and Collaborative Development Network, February 5, 2010
Each year, the May 18 Memorial Foundation announces this award in a spirit of solidarity with those working towards democracy. The award goes to one individual or organization who has contributed to the promotion and advancement of human rights, democracy and peace in their work.
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IN PAST NEWS
A tale of two human rights awardees
By: Stephen Zunes, FPIF, December 2, 2009
The annual Robert F. Kennedy Award ceremony took place at the White House this year for the first time in its 28-year history. Also for the first time, the president of the United States was there to honor the awardees.
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Video: Walls of conflict
By: Link TV, November 11, 2009
Many walls stand around the world, even as Germany celebrates the 20th anniversary of the Berlin Wall coming down. As most media focused on the anniversary celebrations, others tied the plight of Koreans and Palestinians, who are still separated by walls, to the festivities.
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Dilemmas in promoting nonviolence
By: Brian Martin, Gandhi Marg, October-December 2009
Promoting the use of nonviolent action raises a number of seldom-discussed tensions and dilemmas, including the possibility that nonviolence can be used for the wrong cause, the potential for nonviolent action to support violence and vice versa, and the role of advocates for nonviolent action. It is useful to think of nonviolent action as a tool that can be used for different purposes but is, by its nature, easier to use for liberation than oppression.
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