Stories about Human Rights from April, 2012
Brazil: Activists Protest in Memory of Military Dictatorship
A number of cities throughout Brazil held both real and virtual events to remember Brazil's Military Dictatorship (1964-1985). Activists held protests to push for punishing the Dictatorship's criminals and to fully open the still classified files.
Bulgaria: Penalty For Getting Pregnant
The blog “Работнически глас” (“Worker's voice”) tells [bg] about a trial scheduled for May 26: a former female employee is suing a company for a discriminatory clause in the work contract, which stated that any female employee who gets pregnant after being hired will have to pay a fine (700 lv,...
Cuba: Resorting to Hunger Strike
Cuban netizens, primarily from the diaspora, are once again blogging about instances of police abuse in the country and how the island's justice system routinely makes hunger-strikers out of prisoners of conscience.
Sri Lanka: Monks Demand Demolition of a Mosque
Last Friday around 2,000 Buddhist monks and local residents staged a violent protest in Dambulla town in Sri Lanka demanding that a mosque along with a Hindu temple situated in an area designated as a Buddhist sacred zone be demolished.
Turkey: Armenian Genocide Commemoration in Istanbul
April 24 marks the 97th anniversary of the massacre and deportation of around 1.5 million Armenians living in the then Ottoman Empire. An emotive issue for many Armenians and Turks, the anniversary was also commemorated in Istanbul.
Sri Lanka: Death Of Witness In Police Custody
Serendipity reports that Chandraisiri Dassanayake (42), a main witness in a human rights violation case against the Wadduwa Police, was arrested for possession of Ganja on April 15th 2012 and later died in a cell in the Wadduwa police station in the western coast of Sri Lanka.
Malaysia: Occupy Dataran Merdeka and Education Protests
The April 28 Bersih 3.0 sit-down protest is expected to be the major political event of the month in Malaysia but students and Occupy activists have already put forward their demands ahead of time. Students marched in the streets against the 'anti-poor' student loan program while activists launched the Occupy Dataran movement to 'reclaim' democracy in the country
Brazil: Journalist and Blogger Executed in São Luís, Maranhão
On the night of April 23, Brazilian journalist and blogger Décio Sá was shot dead in a bar in the most crowded avenue of the city of São Luis, in the northeastern state of Maranhão. He had ties with political figures of Maranhão and his blog was the most accessed in the state.
Malaysia Prepares for Bersih 3.0 Sit-Down Protest
The Malaysia election reform movement Bersih (Clean) has organized a Bersih 3.0 Duduk Bantah (sit-in protest) on April 28 at Dataran Merdeka. It's the same group which gathered more than 50,000 people in Kuala Lumpur last year in protest against the 'undemocratic' electoral exercise in the country
Mexico: Human Rights Abuses and the Presidential Elections
The documentary A Schizophrenic State by Charlotte King follows the stories of San Salvador Atenco and Oaxaca, two places in Mexico who suffered human rights abuses by the ruling political parties, including a Governor who now would like to become President.
Brazil: Passer by Injured and Arrested by Police in Demonstration
Brazilian blogger Conceição Oliveira reproduces [pt] a Facebook note [pt] from Pedro Urizzi (an actor from São Paulo), who denounces that he was injured and arrested by the Military Police when he was passing by a demonstration against corruption on April 21, 2012, on his way for dinner. The detention...
Sri Lanka: Abductions And Media
“The growing number of abductions and disappearances in Sri Lanka is not getting the amount of publicity the issue deserves,” comments Sanjana Hattotuwa.
Cuba: The “Gap” within the Cuban Exile Community
Penúltimos Días author Ernesto Hernández Busto, who lives in Barcelona, describes the “gap” or divide between Cubans living off the island, when it comes to their desires for Cuba's future; Regina Coyula, a blogger who resides in Cuba, responds. Hernández writes that there is a “deep gap between Cubans with...
Vietnam: Agent Orange Victim and his Music
Meet Thanh Tung, a talented player of dan bau which is a traditional monochord instrument in Vietnam. Tung is also an Agent Orange victim who lost his eyesight at the age of twelve.
Armenia: Human Rights Organizations Concerned by Film Festival Obstruction
After threats, intimidation and incitement to violence led to the cancellation of a film festival to be held in Armenia's second largest city of Gyumri, nationalists have attacked a human rights organization for the same, prompting concerns about freedom of expression.
Slovakia: “Slavery in the Streets of Bratislava, 21st Century”
Radovan Bránik highlights an instance of child abuse in his photo report, Slavery in the streets of Bratislava, 21st century [sk]. His pictures show a girl from Romania who, instead of being at school, is playing accordion for money in Bratislava's Old Town. A few older kids stand nearby, permanently...
Mauritania: The Face of Modern Day Slavery
Although Mauritania officially abolished slavery in 1981 and made the practice a crime in 2007, slavery is still a common phenomenon in the country. A CNN special report titled "Slavery's last stronghold" reveals that an estimated 10% to 20% of the population lives in slavery.
This Week in the Caribbean Blogosphere
In last week's summary of the regional blogosphere, a young comtemporary artist from Barbados made the observation that the region is “more than the beach and coconuts.” Here's a round-up of what Caribbean netizens were talking about this week, with not one mention of beaches or coconuts...
Kenya: Creating Alternative Initiation Rites to Womanhood without Cutting Girls
The Guardian.co.uk has released a video on female genital mutilation and the women and girls who are against this tradition and bringing on new alternatives to this initiation ritual. In the story, two young women refuse to be cut and married off in exchange for dowry, instead they are trying...
Bolivia: Questions Over Murder of Indigenous Female Council Member
The murder of Juana Quispe, an indigenous woman and Municipal Council Member, has boosted the demand for the Plurinational Assembly (Bolivia's Parliament) to pass the Law "Against Political Violence and Harassment based on Gender". Civil society and different organisations also demand appropriate and timely investigation of the unfortunate crime.
Cuba: Absent at the Summit of the Americas
At The Cuban Triangle, Phil Peters blogs about Cuba's absence at the Summit of the Americas, which was held this week in Cartagena, Colombia. Juan Manuel Santos, Colombia's president, addressed the issue of the US trade embargo on Cuba, calling it an “anachronism.” “We cannot be indifferent to a process...