Crime & Justice

The Swedish Elections: A Victory for Populism

After general elections on the 12th September, Sweden is on the threshold of a new era. The Sweden Democrats (SD) won almost 21 percent of the votes and thus became the largest in a bloc of right-wing parties that now have a collective majority in the parliament. A nation that for a long time prided itself of being a beacon of tolerance and openness will now experience a historical transformation. The Sweden Democrats was once founded by Nazi sympathisers and for decades shunned by mainstream politicians. However, SD has now tipped the political scale in a country previously known for its stable and predictable politics, and some of the party’s former foes are now willing to co-rule with them.

USA and Russia: Pursuit of Global Hegemony

Can a pitiless, offensive war waged against a sovereign state be justified? In my opinion the answer is an unequivocal “No!”. Ukraine has the right to defend itself against Russia’s reckless and extremely destructive invasion and EU’s support to a neighbouring country attacked by a superior enemy is definitely correct. However, several Latin American intellectuals and leaders are willing to accept Putin’s narrative, instead of Zelensky’s, namely that the war in Ukraine is actually a war between Russia and USA, which by stalling Russia’s and China’s ambitions intends to maintain its supremacy as a superpower, while using Ukraine as a pawn in its power game.

Africa Struggles with Neo-Colonialism

After a quarter century of economic stagnation, African economic recovery early in the 21st century was under great pressure even before the pandemic, due to new trade arrangements, falling commodity prices and severe environmental stress.

Multi-Faith Team Urges Repeal of Blasphemy Laws– in the Name of Religious Freedom

In nations lacking certain religious freedoms, the bold multi-faith membership of the International Religious Freedom Roundtable’s Campaign to Eliminate Apostasy and Blasphemy Laws, would be forbidden.

Afghanistan: The Year of Illusions

Afghanistan is where history has taken it! The Trump-Taliban "Agreement for Bringing Peace to Afghanistan," signed on 29 February 2020, is deemed by many as the submission of a superpower to a group that had perpetrated acts of extreme ferocity and terror.

How France Underdevelops Africa

Most sub-Saharan African French colonies got formal independence in the 1960s. But their economies have progressed little, leaving most people in poverty, and generally worse off than in other post-colonial African economies. Decolonization? Pre-Second World War colonial monetary arrangements were consolidated into the Colonies Françaises d’Afrique (CFA) franc zone set up on 26 December 1945. Decolonization became inevitable after France’s defeat at Dien Bien Phu in 1954 and withdrawal from Algeria less than a decade later.

The Journey to Defend Human Rights Never Ends

As you know, after four years as the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, my mandate ends next week, on 31 August. The world has changed fundamentally over the course of my mandate.

Chinese Fleet Threatens Latin America’s Fish Stocks

Illegal and excessive fishing, mainly attributed to Chinese fleets, remains a threat to marine resources in the eastern Pacific and southwest Atlantic, as well as to that sector of the economy in Latin American countries bathed by either ocean.

The Price of Bukele’s State of Emergency in El Salvador

The body of Walter Sandoval shows a number of dark bruises on his arms and knees, as well as lacerations on his left eye and on his head - signs that he suffered some kind of violence before dying in a Salvadoran prison, accused of being a gang member.

The Politics of the Hangman’s Noose: Judge, Jury & Executioner

A spike in state-sanctioned executions worldwide – including in Iran, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, and more recently Myanmar – has triggered strong condemnations from the United Nations and several civil rights and human rights organizations.

Neo-Colonial Currency Enables French Exploitation

Colonial-style currency board arrangements have enabled continuing imperialist exploitation decades after the end of formal colonial rule. Such neo-colonial monetary systems persist despite modest reforms.

Gender Sensitization, Not ‘Romeo’ Policing Needed, say Activists

Romeo is a bad word in Uttar Pradesh (UP), India's largest province with nearly 25 million people. While the name symbolises love, various shows of affection and love between women and men can be seen as a criminal offence in UP. For their safety, women are advised not to be seen cosying up with their lovers, especially in public places – because the state police department’s anti-Romeo squads could arrest them.

Africa Taken for ‘Neo-Colonial’ Ride

Like so many others, Africans have long been misled. Alleged progress under imperialism has long been used to legitimize exploitation. Meanwhile, Western colonial powers have been replaced by neo-colonial governments and international institutions serving their interests.

Unprecedented Threats Against “Right to Protest” on the Rise World-wide

The French writer and philosopher Voltaire (1694-1778), once famously remarked: "I disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend unto death, your right to utter them.” But that political axiom hardly applies to multiple governments in Asia, Africa, Europe and Latin America—including Greece, UK, Thailand, Hong Kong, India, Myanmar, Chile, France, Democratic Republic of Congo and Cyprus – where the right to protest, along with freedom of speech, are increasingly in jeopardy.

Sri Lanka: Why a Feudal Culture & Absence of Meritocracy Bankrupted a Nation

Sri Lanka is officially bankrupt and a failed state in all but name. How did a country of 22 million people with a level of literacy on par with most of the developed world end up in such a dire position where the state coffers did not have the measly sum of 20 million dollars to purchase fuel to keep the country functioning beyond the next working day?

A Future Horror and the Hope of the Present

This is an alert message: if nothing stops the wave of violence in Mexico, by the end of 2024 the country could exceed the figure of 150,000 missing persons.

Recalling Shinzo Abe with Respect

Shinzo Abe, the longest-serving Prime Minister of Japan, has died. It was a murder caused by a personal grudge rather than political terrorism. And it was not a direct grudge against Mr. Abe. A religious group had supported Mr. Abe, and a murderer with a grudge against the religious group killed him. Murders targeting politicians are often related to political messages or claims. This is a very unique case in that the murder was committed out of a personal grudge, not against the individual for what he did, but against the organization that supported the individual.

Migrant Workers from Mexico, Caught Up in Trafficking, Forced Labor and Exploitation

Eduardo Reyes, originally from Puebla in central Mexico, was offered a 40-hour workweek contract by his recruiter and his employer in the United States, but ended up performing hundreds of hours of unpaid work that was not authorized because his visa had expired, unbeknownst to him.

Myths Fuel Xenophobic Sentiment in South Africa

Around the world, from Syria to Libya, from Bangladesh to Ukraine, millions have become refugees in foreign lands due to war, famine, or political and economic instability in their countries.

Sri Lankan Beggar’s Opera

When Ceylon- now Sri Lanka- gained independence from Britain in 1948 after almost 450 years of colonial rule under three western powers, it was one Asia’s most stable and prosperous democracies.

International Criminal Court at 20: Renewing the Promise of Justice for the Gravest Crimes

On 1 July 2022, the International Criminal Court (ICC) turns 20. The entry into force on 1 July 2002 of the ICC’s founding treaty, the Rome Statute, officially created the Court and marked the start of its work towards building a more just world.

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