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(Svenska) Yttrande över utredningen “Bättre skydd mot diskriminering” (SOU 2016:87)

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(Svenska) Civil Rights Defenders välkomnar översynen av hur arbetet mot diskriminering kan organiseras och effektiviseras i syfte att säkerställa goda förutsättningar för personer som utsätts för diskriminering att ta till vara sina rättigheter. Vi beklagar dock att syftet, med dess fokus på personer som utsatts för diskriminering, kommit i skymundan i utredningens analyser och förslag.

Natalia Project – Protecting More Than 100 Human Rights Defenders

Photo: Civil Rights Defenders

Over the last few years, Natalia Project – the world’s first assault alarm and positioning system for human rights defenders at risk – has grown significantly. Today, the project includes more than 100 human rights defenders from four continents. One of the participants is Phyllis Omido who works to protect human rights in Kenya. “Natalia Project has freed me from fear, so I can amplify the voice of my people knowing that someone is watching over me”, says Phyllis.

(Svenska) Hur står det till med den personliga integriteten?

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(Svenska) Regeringen har under de senaste åren tillsatt ett flertal statliga utredningar för att se över integritetsskyddet i Sverige. En av dessa utredningar, integritetskommittén, lämnade nyligen sitt delbetänkande “Hur står det till med den personliga integriteten (SOU 2016:41)?”. Civil Rights Defenders välkomnar kommitténs kartläggning av tillståndet för den personliga integriteten, men invänder mot vissa av utredningens slutsatser.

(Svenska) Färre i häkte och minskad isolering

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(Svenska) I bekämpandet av brottslighet utgör häktning det mest ingripande tvångsmedlet mot en person som misstänks för brott. Regeringen gav därför i juli 2015 en särskild utredare i uppdrag att lämna förslag som ska minska användningen av bland annat häktning. Utredningen föreslår till exempel en begränsning av häktningstiderna, lagstiftad rätt till mänsklig kontakt och särskilda regler för frihetsberövade barn. Här kan du läsa Civil Rights Defenders synpunkter på utredningen.

(Svenska) USA: Fejkmedia avgjorde valutgången

(Svenska) Dagarna efter presidentvalet i USA har en rad viktiga amerikanska tidningar, ”mainstream media”, fått ägna sig åt självkritiska betraktelser, en plågsam mea culpa, över hur de har rapporterat och analyserat valkampanjen. De hade uppenbarligen inte förstått vilken ilska som en stor del av den amerikanska väljarkåren känt, främst på landsbygden och i små städer och byar men även allmänt i vit lägre medelklass, och de hade då inte tagit på fullt allvar kraften i Trumps kandidatur.

Video: We Empower Human Rights Defenders at Risk

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Civil Rights Defenders is an independent expert organisation founded in 1982 in Sweden, with the mission to defend people’s civil and political rights and empower human rights defenders at risk. We have a presence on four continents and are active in some of the world’s most repressive regions. By working in collaboration with 200 local partners and focusing on innovation, the goal is to achieve long-term sustainable change. Watch the video about Civil Rights Defenders and learn more about the impact of our work.

(Svenska) Yttrande om framtidens polisutbildning

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(Svenska) I delbetänkandet “Polis i framtiden” föreslås att den nuvarande grundutbildningen till polisman ska omformas till en treårig högskoleutbildning. Civil Rights Defenders välkomnar förslaget, men vi är kritiska till att utredningen överhuvudtaget inte belyser vikten av att enskilda poliser besitter adekvat kunskap om sina skyldigheter att respektera mänskliga rättigheter. Vi har också en rad synpunkter på hur utredningen genomförts och förslag på ytterligare åtgärder.

Today We Open the Doors to Defenders’ Days 2016

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For the fourth time in succession this year, Civil Rights Defenders opens the doors to Defenders’ Days! We welcome 160 human rights defenders from all over the world to attend the conference and to enjoy the opportunities for networking and sharing experiences. Furthermore, we have invited some of the world’s foremost human rights expert to host a wide variety of trainings, workshops and presentations.

Putin Signs Law Which Will Allow Russia to Ignore International Human Rights Court Decisions

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“This law will have far reaching consequences for the people who depend on the judgements of international human rights courts to get moral and financial redress. In the North Caucasus region of Russia for example, thousands of victims and their families have benefitted from the rulings of the European Court of Human Rights, having received compensation for extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, torture and other grave human rights abuses”, said Joanna Kurosz, Programme Director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

(Svenska) Yttrande om barn och ungas rätt vid tvångsvård

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(Svenska) Regeringen beslutade 2012 att tillkalla en särskild utredare med uppdrag att göra en översyn av lagen med särskilda bestämmelser om vård av unga (LVU). Utredningens huvuduppgift har varit att stärka barnrättsperspektivet i tvångsvården för barn och unga och i vissa andra delar av den sociala barn- och ungdomsvården. Civil Rights Defenders och Nationell Samverkan för Psykisk Hälsa har skrivit ett gemensamt yttrande om utredningen.

(Svenska) Yttrande över Bergwallkommissionens förslag

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(Svenska) Civil Rights Defenders och Nationell Samverkan för Psykisk Hälsa har skrivit ett gemensamt yttrande över Bergwallkommissionens förslag. Kommissionen har haft i uppdrag att utreda och redovisa rättsväsendets och vårdens agerande i samband med de brottmålsprocesser som ledde till att Sture Bergwall dömdes för åtta mord. Vi välkomnar utredningen och är i stort positiva till dess förslag, men ytterligare åtgärder behöver vidtas.

Human Rights in Russia

Since 2000 the human rights situation worsened in Russia and has greatly deteriorated since Putin was reinstalled as President of Russia in 2012. State repression over the past few years became more sophisticated as legislation was adopted to discredit and/or attack human rights defenders. New laws restricting the rights to freedom of expression, assembly and association have been introduced since Putin’s re-election. Russian authorities have made efforts to control and limit the last available channels for freedom of speech – Internet and social media through two new laws introduced in 2014.

Public Discussion about Law on Public Peace and Order in Republika Srpska (BiH)

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Civil Rights Defenders is organising a public discussion about the newly adopted Law on Public Peace and Order in Republika Srpska (BiH). How will the law influence independent media, civil society organisations and the state of human rights and freedom of speech in Republika Srpska and the whole Bosnia and Herzegovina? Is the law protecting public peace and order or the authorities? Join us and take part in the debate!

(Svenska) Riksdagsseminarium 2 februari om mänskliga rättigheter i Sverige

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(Svenska) Den 26 januari granskas Sverige i den så kallade UPR-processen i Genève. Då får vi veta hur FN ser på eventuella framsteg och tillbakagångar, samt vilka rekommendationer Sverige får från andra medlemsländer. I och med att Sverige granskas bjuder Civil Rights Defenders in till ett seminarium i riksdagen, den 2 februari. Sex experter från det civila samhället diskuterar granskningen. Vi behöver din anmälan senast den 30 januari.

(Svenska) Kuba och USA; vad sker nu?

Photo: Civil Rights Defenders

(Svenska) Den 17 december 2014, efter 18 månader av hemliga samtal, slöt USA och Kuba ett avtal som medför en historisk avspänning i ländernas relationer. Vilka blir effekterna av denna överenskommelse och hur kommer den att påverka relationen inte bara mellan USA och Kuba utan mellan supermakten och Latinamerika i stort? Den 14 januari deltar Erik Jennische, Civil Rights Defenders programchef för Latinamerika, i ett panelsamtal på Latinamerikainstitutet om dessa brinnande frågor.

(Svenska) 10 dec: Samers urfolksrättigheter i skuggan av statens markintressen

Photo: Civil Rights Defenders

(Svenska) Den 10 december på internationella dagen för mänskliga rättigheter väljer vi att uppmärksamma Samers rättigheter och de pågående människorättskränkningar som en av Sveriges fem nationella minoriteter vittnar om. Hör Marie Persson från Stoppa Gruvan i Rönnbäck samt ledamot i Sametinget belysa människorättssituationen för Sveriges urfolk i Sápmi.

(Svenska) Seminarium 22 nov: Etnisk profilering: erfarenheter från kamp och framgångar i USA och Storbritannien

(Svenska) Tidigare i år bekräftade en rapport från Arena Idé att svensk polis väljer ut personer och kontrollerar deras identitet enbart på grundval av deras etniska utseende. Detta trots att etnisk profilering är förbjudet enligt internationell och svensk lag. Det är uppenbart att lagstiftning inte räcker. Andra verktyg behövs för att åstadkomma förändring. För såväl aktivister som poliser finns mycket att lära av erfarenheter och framgångar i USA och Storbritannien.

Seminar: Meet Belarus most prominent human rights defender

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After 1,052 days in prison Ales Bialiatski was granted an amnesty on June 21 of this year and immediately resumed his work as a human rights defender and President of Viasna. In cooperation with Östgruppen, Civil Rights Defenders invites you to meet with Ales on October 24 where you can hear about the current situation in Belarus and the country’s relationship with neighboring Russia and Ukraine.

The state of Internet freedom after the coup in Thailand

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Since the military coup three months ago, Thailand has introduced a ban on political gatherings; politicians and activists have been arrested, and media censored. In the light of these developments, we invite Thai human rights defender and Internet activist Arthit Suriyawongkul to talk about the present state of freedom of expression and how human rights defenders can operate under these conditions.

Open call for a video-sprint in the Western Balkans

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Civil Rights Defenders is issuing an open call for participation in a video-sprint event, which is scheduled to take place in Kosovo, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia in October 2014. The events will be organised by Civil Rights Defenders in partnership with Youth Initiative for Human Rights Serbia as part of the “Video for Change” project supported by the Swedish Institute within their Creative Force Programme.

Tomás Ojea Quintana on challenges in Myanmar

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Tomás Ojea Quintana , the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar , recently left Myanmar after their last field trip to the country. He describes the ongoing reforms as a positive step towards democracy in Myanmar , while stressing the remaining challenges .ome and listen to a breakfast seminar with Tomás Ojea Quintana on March 20, when he talks about future challenges for human rights in Myanmar and the role the international community can play in addressing these challenges .

Little respect for rule of law in unrecognized territories

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In the breakaway region on Moldova’s eastern border with Ukraine, the socio-political environment in the Transnistria region remains highly repressive. In this unrecognized territory authorities act with impunity. There is little respect for the rule of law, and fundamental human rights are routinely violated. 12 March the Executive Director of Promo-LEX Association, Ion Manole, will present an assessment of the current human rights situation in Transnistria and address these grave violations.

Seminar: LGBT activist fighting oppression

Siarhei Androsenka became a police target when 71 activists from all over Belarus signed a application in the attempt to register the organisation Gay Belarus with the authorities. It didn’t take long until the regime responded. Activists were called in for questioning and police conducted raids on gay clubs in Minsk and Vitebsk. Others were stopped at the border and had their belongings searched. In at least one case, a member of the organisation was beaten in a police station. Hear Siarhei talk about the situation for LGBT people in Belarus and how it feels being forced into exile.

Civil society suffocating under Putin’s rule

Over the past several years, Russia has adopted a series of laws that has impeded the work of NGO’s and severely worsened the overall human rights climate in the country. Freedoms of expression, assembly and association are constantly under threat and the increasing discrimination and aggression towards ethnic minorities, migrants, and the LGBT community is a real and serious on-going problem. Racism, homophobia and xenophobia are widespread among ordinary people and instigated in most cases by the Russian state.

(Svenska) Live: Likhet inför lagen 2032

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(Svenska) Regeringen antog 2012 en strategi för romsk inkludering i det svenska samhället som sträcker sig fram till år 2032. Det övergripande målet är att romer som föds idag ska ha samma rättigheter som andra år 2032. Mot bakgrund av vad som avslöjats om polisens registrering av romer, har Civil Rights Defenders bjudit in Rosario Ali Taikon, statsvetare och nationalekonom som sedan mer än 10 år varit aktiv i arbetet med romers rättigheter, för att diskutera regeringens strategi för romsk inkludering.

(Svenska) Statslösa i sitt eget hemland – om konflikten i västra Burma

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(Svenska) Dagens Burma präglas inte bara av positiv förändring. Den här kortfilmen (10 min) som premiärvisas under Almedalsveckan, visar en annan utveckling – etnisk rensning pågår, delvis i det tysta. I juni 2012 utbröt våldsamheter mellan etniska grupper i delstaten Rakhine i västra Burma. Därefter har våld blossat upp, i huvudsak mot medlemmar av folkgruppen Rohingya, men också mot andra muslimer.

No sweet songs for human rights defenders

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A year ago Swedish TV viewers’ attention was directed towards Azerbaijan; and wile the Eurovision Song Contest was held in Baku, the regime’s human rights violations continued in the backyard. Today, the lights have gone out but the repression of civil society has reached new lows. On 14 May, Civil Rights Defenders will release a report on the situation of human rights defenders in Azerbaijan. Listen to Vugar Goyajev’s presentation of the findings of the report.

Seminar: The path to democracy

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Serbia, Hungary and the Czech Republic have all come a long way from the time when communism was overthrown. But the path from transition to consolidation of democracy is long and difficult. Where do we stand today, in the three countries? What can we learn from the past? Four panellists will share their analysis and thoughts: Borka Pavicevic and Tanja Petovar from Serbia, Jan Urban from the Czech Republic and Miklos Haraszti from Hungary.

Journalist in exile receives human rights award

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As recognition for his work promoting free expression in Ethiopia, Mesfin Negash, together with 40 other journalists and writers, has received the Hellman/Hammett award for 2012. The award is administrated by Human Rights Watch and given to writers who are subject to political persecution and human rights abuses. After being threatened by the authorities, Mesfin Negash fled Ethiopia in 2009 and today he continues his work for human rights in exile from Sweden.

(Svenska) Putins Tjetjenienpolitik

(Svenska) Det andra Tjetjenienkriget bröt ut 1999 strax efter att Rysslands president Jeltsin utsett Vladimir Putin till premiärminister för att bana väg för honom som sin efterträdare. Hanteringen av Tjetjenienkonflikten kom alltså att bli en tung fråga under Putins första mandatperiod. Ett halvår efter att Putin nu åter blivit president ställs frågan om resultaten av Putins Tjetjenienpolitik och om den har förändrats.

Human rights in the new Putin era

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In May 2012, Vladimir Putin became President of Russia again. Since then, a series of laws that impede the work of human rights defenders have been adopted and in the North Caucasus the human rights violations continue. Civil Rights Defenders have gathered some of the most prominent experts on the North Caucasus to talk about how human rights are affected by Vladimir Putin’s return to Presidency.

Sapiyat Magomedova

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The North Caucasian republic of Dagestan is one of the most dangerous places for lawyers in Russia today. In this region, Sapiyat Magomedova defends victims of grave human rights violations; like enforced disappearances, extra judicial killings and torture. She has taken on cases that many lawyers would reject due to security reasons, and althought it is considered almost impossible, she has won several of them.

Blerta Cani Drenofci

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Until 1993 persons with disabilities were invisible, kept in institutions, and no one talked about their rights. Today the issue is less controversial but Blerta Cani Drenofci, Executive Director of Albanian Disability Rights Foundation, says she her choice of career has often been questioned: “In the beginning I met a lot of ignorance. My friends were surprised that I wanted to work with this issue.”

Ee Sarom

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About 60.000 people were forcibly evicted in Cambodia in 2011 alone, local human rights group ADHOC reports. Those who refuse to abandon their house or dare to demonstrate face risk of arrest or violence, and human rights defenders working on housing rights are persecuted. In a country where many non-governmental organisations are afraid to support human rights issues, Ee Sarom, and his organisation, stands tall. ”Sometimes I am scared but I have to do my job”, says Ee Sarom.

Criminalisation and persecution of Cambodian human rights defenders

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In May, police arrested 15 human rights defenders in Phnom Penh. Within days, 13 of them had been convicted to each 2.5 years in prison in an unfair trial. In the past several years, they have carried out peaceful protests against forced evictions and unlawful expropriation of land. Ee Sarom at Sahmakum Teang Tnaut (STT) tells his story about the “Free the 15” and the increasingly tough conditions for human rights defenders in Cambodia, in this autumn’s first seminar in our series “One hour of human rights”!

Zdravko Cimbaljevic

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Two years ago, an unfamiliar man attacked Zdravko Cimbaljevic. The hate crime led Zdravko to openly speak about his homosexuality in the press, thereby becoming Montenegro’s first open homosexual. Since then, he is subject to constant threats. It is a difficult task to change the attitude towards LGBT people in a country where about 70 per cent of the population believes that homosexuality is a disease: “I don’t ask everybody to love us, just not to attack me or violate my rights.”

Seminar: Propaganda laws strangles gay activism

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A new law prohibiting ”propaganda” for homosexuality was recently passed in St Petersburg’s local parliament. Similar laws have already been passed in Ryazan, Arkhangelsk and Kostroma, and there is a ongoing discussion about introducing propaganda laws on a federal level. Listen to Anastasia Smirnova and Alexandra Semenova about how the laws came about and how they affect the work for human rights, on Friday May 25.

Mesfin Negash

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Being one of Ethiopia’s very few independent journalists, Mesfin Negash was harrassed by the government to the limit that he had to go into exile. Today he lives in Sweden but continues to spread news about human rights and politics in Ethiopia, trying to make the international community alert on the situation in the country: “If you took a balance sheet you would see that we are equal to Burma”, says Mesfin Negash.

Svetlana Isayeva

Svetlana Isaeva Photo: Tina Axelsson

Five years have passed since Svetlana Isayeva’s, at that time, 25-year old son ”disappeared”. In Dagestan, where the war against terrorism affects an increasing number of civilians, Svetlana, together with at group of others who have also lost someone dear, founded Mothers of Dagestan for human rights; an organisation that is on the victim’s side in the armed conflict between the Russian government forces and the separatists.

The role of civil society, citizens and media in the Western Balkans: Challenges as an opportunity

Civil Rights Defenders is organising a two-day regional conference in cooperation with Transparency International Bosnia and Herzegovina (TI BiH) on the theme “The role of civil society, citizens and media in the Western Balkans: Challenges as an opportunity“. The conference will be held in Sarajevo, November 22-23. Journalists, activists and civil society organisations from the […]

Support our emergency operations in the North Caucasus

Oleg Orlov. Photo: Pakhomenko

Human rights defenders in the North Caucasus live in constant danger. In 2009 Natalia Estemirova was murdered because of her work. Her collegue Oleg Orlov risked prison because he accused the Chechnyan President Ramzan Kadyrov of being responsible for her murder. Kadyrov had threathened Estemirova earlier. Through our Emergency fund will we be able to offer support in specifically vulnerable and urgent situations.

Discussion about Sweden’s and the EU’s politics regarding Russia

Oksana Tjelysjeva är verksam inom Rysk-tjetjenska vänskapsförbundet och kolumnist för den oberoende tidningen Novaja Gazeta. Usam Bajsajev arbetar för den ryska människorättsorganisationen Memorial, som i år tilldelats det prestigefulla Sacharovpriset. Ingmar Oldberg är Rysslandsexpert och associerad forskare vid Utrikespolitiska institutet. Robert Hårdh är chef för Civil Rights Defenders. Martin Uggla är ordförande i Östgruppen för […]

Terrorist fear and Rule of law – the Guantanamo system after Bush

Public meeting with a panel discussion on terrorism legislation and human rights. Participants: Thomas Olsson, Lawyer, has represented members of al-Barakaat among other Laue Traberg Smidt, Danish Lawyer, has represented members of al-Aqsa among other Anna Wigenmark, Lawyer, Civil Rights Defenders Madelaine Seidlitz, Lawyer, Amnesty Abdirisak Aden, Gösta Hultén, Journalist, Charta 2008 Date: Saturday November […]