Stories about Human Rights from January, 2009
Russia, Poland: Robert Amsterdam's Interview
Translation of Robert Amsterdam's interview in the Polish Gazeta Wyborzca – at Robert Amsterdam Blog.
Latvia: Protest and Changes
Baltic writes about political changes taking place in Latvia due to the crisis. Free Speech Emergency in Latvia posts a video from a silent protest in Riga.
Russia: Moscow Riot Cops vs Garbage Container
LJ user trashman_2009, a Greenpeace activist, posts pictures of himself dressed as a green garbage container, being dragged away by Moscow riot police after a failed attempt to get an appointment with the Moscow mayor and talk to him about recycling (RUS).
Indonesia: Fatwa against smoking, yoga, vasectomies….
Indonesian bloggers are reacting to the Fatwa issued by the Indonesian Ulema Council which included, among others, a ban on yoga that contain Hindu elements, a ban on vote abstention, a ban on smoking in public places, and a ban on vasectomy.
Rohingya Muslims facing cultural genocide
Prof. Marranci writes that Rohingya Muslims are “victims of their lack of strategic value, both for their native Southeast Asia and the wider international community.” The Rohingyas are also “facing a slow, silent cultural genocide.”
Cuba: Hope and Change
On hearing the news that two black Cubans were arrested “after they were heard making favorable comments” about the Obama presidency, Uncommon Sense has these words for the new president: “Please do not let their faith in you, and their faith in real hope and change for their country, be...
Russia: Medvedev on Markelov's Murder
RFE/RL's The Power Vertical, Robert Amsterdam's Blog, and Sean's Russia Blog comment on Dmitry Medvedev's remarks about the murders of Stanislav Markelov and Anastasia Baburova in Moscow last week.
Ukraine: KGB Archive
Sean's Russia Blog writes this about Ukraine's plans “the entire KGB archive dating 1917-1991″: “These materials will certainly be employed in the further crafting of Ukraine’s ‘imagined community’ of victimization by, rather than a participant in, the Soviet regime. Sadly, using these documents for this purpose has little to do...
Egypt: What Next After Guantanamo Bay?
“Honestly, what do you put on your resume after spending a couple of years working as a Guantanamo Bay interrogator? And where do you apply for work?” asks Egyptian Sandmonkey, now that US President Barack Obama has ordered the closure of Guantanamo Bay in a year.
Cuba: Human Rights & Political Prisoners
As The Cuban Triangle reports that Cuba is about to face a human rights review, Uncommon Sense says that women are also among the political prisoners on the island.
Jamaica, Zimbabwe: Hunger Strike
“Do people in Jamaica and the Caribbean care enough about events in Zimbabwe to lend their help to this call for moral action?”: Annie Paul has a friend who is on a hunger strike to draw attention to the humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe and tells us how we can help.
Hong Kong: From Censorship Debate to Critique of Christian Right
The debate over censorship of indecency in Hong Kong sparkled by the consultation on the Control of Obscene and Indecent Article Ordinance (COIAO) has developed into a critique of religious /Christian Right politics as the conservative Christians openly demand the extension of COIAO for censoring “speech” or “article” that “instigates...
Russia: Medvedev vs Putin's Espionage Law
RFE/RL's The Power Vertical reports that president Medvedev “has instructed his administration to re-work a controversial bill broadening the definition of treason and espionage to assure that it doesn't violate human rights.”
Ukraine: Medical Center for Street Children
Scenes from the Sidewalk posts pictures and writes about the only medical center in Kyiv “where street children can get medical attention without documents”: “Many At-Risk Children or street children do not have these documents and will be turned away at the door if they try to get medical attention....
Erin Brockovich wanted in Egypt
Egyptian Blogger sued for slander and looses. Zeinobia wrote about Tamer Mabrouk who blogs from Port Said and who published a report supported by photography showing how “Trust Chemical Industries” Company was polluting the Lake Manzala with its chemical wastes from their factory. Author of “El Hakika” blog has to pay L.E 2500 as a fine and L.E 40,000 compensation for the company !!
Armenia: Open Letter Against Intolerance
Queering Yerevan posts an open letter in Armenian and English for its readers to sign in protest at growing intolerance and homophobia in the pro-government and pro-opposition media as well as from some representatives of civil society in the country. Meanwhile, Unzipped: Gay Armenia links to previous posts detailing the...
Armenia: No PACE Sanctions
Life in the Armenian Diaspora comments on yesterday's decision by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe not to suspend Armenia's voting rights in the influential body. The blog says that promises to amend two articles of the Criminal Code remind it of moves to change legislation in Turkey...
Armenia-Azerbaijan: Young Bloggers Bridge Geopolitical Divides
Nearly 15 years after a ceasefire agreement put the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the disputed territory of Nagorno Karabakh on hold, a lasting peace remains elusive and few citizens of either country have the opportunity to meet or communicate with the other. That might all be set to change, however, with DOTCOM, a project funded by the U.S. State Department's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and implemented by Project Harmony.
Trinidad & Tobago: New Grassroots Effort
“As tens of thousands come together in Belem, Brazil for the…World Social Forum, we send early word of a parallel volunteer, grassroots effort coming out of the Caribbean to extend the debate over globalization and the global economic crisis into new realities of social justice, equity, sustainable development, and peace...
Guyana: Going High-Tech
Guyana 360 maintains that the former First Lady is not the only one who has suffered “high-tech abuse” at the hands of the country's President.
Iran: Political prisoners under more pressure
Ghomar Asheganeh, an Iran based blogger says [fa] that “Iranian political prisoners have been under more pressure recently.They are forced to follow some religious activities such as prayer in order to meet and contact their family members”.