Seventy years ago, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)
was signed in the Palais de Chaillot in Paris. Following two devastating world wars the United Nations General Assembly set out a brand new vision of human rights that the world could agree on going forward. It is still the benchmark by which most modern-day human rights organisations live.
Several celebrities use their power to insult or take advantage of women. We read about sexual abuse from men like Harvey Weinsten, Bill O´Reilly, Leslie Moonves, Jeffrey Epstein, Bill Cosby, R. Kelly, Dennis Hastert, Robert Packwood, Roger Ailes, James Levine, Hans Hermann Groër, Marcial Maciel, Justin Forsyth, Ruud Lubbers, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Bill Clinton, Silvio Berlusconi and Donald Trump. The list is just a sample of an extensive catalogue of Western men accused of abusing women, using their fame, fortune and power to exploit and humiliate them. Unfortunately, misogyny
, contempt of and prejudice against women and girls, may even be characterized as a cultural universal
, an element, pattern, trait, or institution that is common to all human cultures worldwide.
María is a 35-year old Salvadoran woman with three young children. Growing up, María knew her mother but never met her father. When María was six, she started working at the Central Market of San Salvador and at the age of 12 she was raped and became pregnant for the first time.
Why do we still need to be concerned about a war that ended a hundred years ago? Sure, it caused the death of at least 37 million people, but why bother about that now? Anyhow France´s president Emmanuel Macron believed it was worthwhile to commemorate the end of World War I and seventy world leaders were invited to attend the centennial ceremony by Paris´s Arc de Triomphe
Rodrigo Duterte’s bloody war on drugs has claimed tens of thousand of lives. Lorena Villanueva and Emy Pagaduan lost their sons. Now they are demanding that the President of the Philippines be held responsible for the killings.
Despite the undeniable shock caused to Sri Lanka’s democratic system on October 26th 2018 as a result of President Maithripala Sirisena’s swearing in of a new Prime Minister lacking a majority in the House, several unmistakable positive factors have emerged since then.
Left blind by a beating from her ex-husband, Susana Gómez barely managed to avoid joining the list of nearly 2,800 femicides committed annually in Latin America, but her case shows why public policies and laws are far from curtailing gender-based violence in the region.
Last week I met with Aamir, a 29-year-old Yemenite, living in Geneva since October 2018 and waiting for his application for asylum to be finalized.
A foreign citizen – well-known journalist, author, university lecturer and regime critic – with residence in the US is abducted by a group of professionals employed by a foreign Government – depicted as a stout US ally – and subsequently tortured and killed. In spite of the case being thoroughly investigated by both the CIA and the FBI, which verified that a crime had been committed, the US Government did not take any steps to rebuke the rulers of the allied country.
"Setback" and "disillusionment" were the terms used by Yolanda Morán, a mother whose son was the victim of forced disappearance, to describe the security plan outlined by Mexican president-elect Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who takes office on Dec. 1.
Last week’s announcement by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) of £50m ($64.3m) to help end female genital mutilation (FGM) is great news. The biggest ever financial commitment by any donor, it could be a game changer for the African-led movement to end this abhorrent subjugation of women.
US president Donald Trump has triggered another spat. But such wrangling is not new. It has lived with the relationship since its inception. The reasons are many. At the heart of these reasons is the reality that it is not a normal bilateral relationship.
‘Do not let us off the hook; keep our feet to the fire’. These were the words of the UN Secretary General Mr. Antonio Guterres
when he promised to personally lead the global body towards greater gender equality.
The lack of women’s empowerment is a critical form of inequality. And while there are many barriers to empowerment, violence against women and girls (VAW) is both a cause and a consequence of gender inequality.
“From the tuk tuk drivers in Cambodia… to the school children in South Africa, women and men and girls and boys are taking a stand to prevent violence against women,” says Executive Director of UN Women and Under Secretary General Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka
That almost one in five Kenyan teenage girls is a mother represents not only a huge cost to the health sector, but also a betrayal of potential on a shocking scale.
Thousands of Rohingya refugees in camps in Cox’s Bazar, the southern-most coastal district in Bangladesh, protested on Thursday, Nov. 15, against an attempt to send them back to Myanmar.
The day before Amnesty International released a statement calling on the government of Sudan to end harassment, intimidation and censorship of journalists following the arrests of at least 15 journalists since the beginning of the year, the head of the National Intelligence Security Services (NISS) Salah Goush accused Sudanese journalists, who recently met with western diplomats, of being spies.
Censorship, controversial judicial proceedings and imprisonment: such is the current risk run by independently-thinking journalists in Turkey.
Globally, the people working to defend our human rights are increasingly under attack, reaching a “crisis point.”