Human rights groups call for an end to the crackdown on human rights defenders and political activists as UPR begins

first_img Latest developments: The day before the UAE UPR session, a parody of judicial proceedings Yesterday, Sunday 27 January 2013, the Attorney General of the UAE, Salem Saeed Kubaish stated that “94 Emirati suspects have been referred to the Federal Supreme Court as part of the case relating to the organisation which sought to seize power in the country”. After more than 6 months without any judicial proceeding for some of the detainees, they are – the day before the UAE UPR session – accused of charges including “communicating with individuals and international and foreign entities and establishments based outside the State in order to distort the image of the State”, seeking “to disseminate these fabrications through the members of the organisation, the media and the social networking sites on the Internet” and “launch(ing), establish(ing) and r(unning) an organisation seeking to oppose the basic principles of the UAE system of governance and to seize power(Khaleej Times, WAM, “94 Emirati suspects referred to the Federal Supreme Court”, 27 January 2013, http://bit.ly/X4n4KB ”. These charges closely resemble accusations against human rights defenders in Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States, with a worrying emphasis on communication via social media and the internet with “establishments based outside the State”. The Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression, in 2011, stated: The Special Rapporteur remains concerned that legitimate online expression is being criminalized in contravention of States’ international human rights obligations, whether it is through the application of existing criminal laws to online expression, or through the creation of new laws specifically designed to criminalize expression on the Internet. Such laws are often justified on the basis of protecting an individual’s reputation, national security or countering terrorism, but in practice are used to censor content that the Government and other powerful entities do not like or agree with.([Frank LaRue, Special Rapporteur on promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression “Report to the General Assembly”, 16 May 2011, para 34)] April 28, 2021 Find out more Organisation News NSO Group hasn’t kept its promises on human rights, RSF and other NGOs say Discrimination against the Bedoon communityAlthough the UAE affirms that efforts to resolve the situation have been made since mid-2008, by facilitating the granting of a nationality other than Emirati nationality, in order to then apply for a residence permit in the UAE, this practice is counter-productive. One of the only countries who is willing to grant nationality to members of the Emirati Bedoon community are the Comoro Islands, after the impoverished island state received large sums of money from the UAE in 2009. However, once individuals take the necessary steps to adopt Comorian nationality, they are often threatened with deportation. Numerous Bedoon remain in retention, waiting for their supposed deportation to the Comoros. Receive email alerts to go further Attacks on Human Rights DefendersIn addition to the ongoing detentions of two prominent human rights lawyers, Dr Mohamed Al-Roken and Dr Al-Mansoori, Ahmed Mansoor, one of the UAE5 referred to above, has been subjected to physical assaults at least twice over the past nine months. These attacks are accompanied by a well-organized smear campaign launched against him, including statements by officials claiming that he is an Iranian spy in addition to innumerable threats against him on social networks. He is also unable to travel as the authorities refuse to return his passport.The use of travel bans, the stripping of nationalities and the disbanding of rights organizations are all methods used by the Emiratis authorities to silence the voices that are calling for reform and respect for public liberties.In November 2012, Federal Decree No.5/2012 on combating cyber crimes was adopted. This law poses a serious threat to the freedom of expression and assembly of peaceful activists as it provides a definition of online activities which could be used to limit the work of activists who use the internet to express their opinion. The law stipulates penalties of imprisonment on any person who may create or run an electronic site or any information technology means, to deride or to damage the reputation or the stature of the state or any of its institutions. Our organisations fear that the “fight against cyber-crimes” could be used as a pretext to repress freedom of expression and imprison activists, just as the “fight against terrorism” often has been.TortureTorture by members of the State Security forces remains a concern, with further allegations being documented as recently as September 2012, such as the cases of Ahmed Al-Suweidi, Abdulelah Al-Jadani and Musab Khalil Abood, which leading human rights organisations including the undersigned denounced. In addition, other individuals arrested in the current crackdown, including Dr Al-Roken’s son and son-in-law, have been tortured. United Arab EmiratesMiddle East – North Africa January 28, 2013 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Human rights groups call for an end to the crackdown on human rights defenders and political activists as UPR begins International community condemns the human rights violations committed by the UAE authoritiesOn 17 July 2012, as the second wave of arrests and detention of peaceful activists was just starting, OHCHR’s spokeperson Rupert Colville called the Emirati authorities “to guarantee that human rights defenders are able to carry out their work without fear of reprisals and urge them to release those who have been detained for peaceful exercise of their fundamental human rights”. The dire human rights situation in the UAE has also been highlighted by a strong resolution(http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef=-//EP//TEXT+TA+P7-T…) by the European Parliament, which condemned the situation, calling it as a “crackdown on human rights defenders and civil society activists”. It called for “the unconditional release of all prisoners of conscience and activists including human rights defenders and calls on the authorities of the United Arab Emirates to ensure that detainees deemed to have broken the law be brought before a judge, be charged with a crime and be provided with the legal assistance of their choosing.” The undersigned human rights organisations therefore urge the authorities to: 1.Release immediately and unconditionally all prisoners of conscience and activists including human rights defenderss or ensure that detainees deemed to have broken the law be brought before a judge, be charged with a crime and be provided with the legal assistance of their choosing.2.Halt all persecution of human rights defenders and those peacefully expressing their opinions, including On-Line activists. Immediately release and expunge the convictions of those convicted for expressing their opinion peacefully and Ensure that Federal Legal Decree No. 5 for 2012 on combating cyber crimes is in full conformity with relevant international norms namely the right to freedom of expression and association.3.Take all necessary measures to ensure that torture and ill-treatment ceases in all places of detention; that all cases of torture be investigate by impartial and independent authorities; and that torturers be held accountable for their crimes. 4.To ensure that all trials meet international fair trial standards, including the full independence of the judiciary, and that all those detained arbitrarily are released as quickly as possible. 5.To end to discrimination against the Bedoon community, including in the application of its nationality law. 6.Guarantee in all circumstances that all human rights defenders and activists in UAE are able to carry out their legitimate human rights activities without fear of reprisals and free of all restrictions including judicial harassment. News Smear campaign launched by the Emirati authoritiesIt appears that ‘national security’ has been used as a pretext by the Emirati authorities to stifle dissent and repress all activists asking for democratic reforms and respect for human rights. The Emirati authorities have since launched a smear campaign against the detainees and their families using state-run media. The individuals are accused by local media, known to be close to the authorities, of being part of a local branch of the Muslim Brotherhood and of attempting to create a military wing aimed at establishing an Islamic state in the United Arab Emirates. Families of a number of those detained have also had their bank accounts frozen, leading to understandable stress, beyond that created by the detention of their loved one.Although some of the detainees are members of Al-Islah (the Reform and Social Guidance Association), a non-violent political movement advocating for political reforms, the other detainees are jurists, law professors at university, lawyers and human rights defenders held solely due to their peaceful and legitimate human rights activities. . In addition to the 66 peaceful activists detained, other citizens were arrested arbitrarily by the Emirati security services, which brings the total number of people arbitrarily detained to 93, including 12 Egyptian nationals. RSF_en Follow the news on United Arab Emirates News Unfair trialsur organisations are concerned at the large number of unfair trials in the country, beyond the crackdown described above. Numerous individuals continue to be arbitrarily detained without charge, forced to make forced confessions, and in some cases convicted without receiving the minimum guarantees of a fair trial. RSF joins other NGOs in amicus brief in WhatsApp suit against NSO Group Help by sharing this information RSF joins Middle East and North Africa coalition to combat digital surveillance Read in Arabic (بالعربية)Today, the human rights record of the United Arab Emirates will be reviewed by the UN Human Rights Council as the situation in the country continues to deteriorate. On this occasion, the undersigned organisations call on Human Rights Council member-states to urge the United Arab Emirates to put an end to the current crackdown against peaceful human rights defenders and political activists and to honour its commitments as a newly elected member of the Human Rights Council to “uphold(s) the highest standards in the promotion and protection of human rights” (UN General Assembly resolution 50/251 para. 9). Ongoing crackdown on freedom of expression: detention, torture, smear campaign & attacks on peaceful activists The ‘UAE5’ and the beginning of the crackdown on freedom of expressionSince March 2011, a severe crackdown against human rights defenders, civil society activists and advocates of political reform has been carried out by the authorities in the United Arab Emirates. While the region was undergoing popular uprisings demanding greater civil and political rights, 132 Emiratis citizens signed a petition calling for the election of all the members of the Federal National Council and to give them legislative powers (demanding an elected parliament with legislative powers). Five individuals or the so called “UAE5”, including prominent human rights defender Ahmed Mansoor, a member of Human Rights Watch’s Middle East advisory committee, were arrested and tried in this context. The “UAE 5” were held from April to November 2011. All of them were found guilty of “publicly insulting” the President of the UAE, following a fundamentally unfair trial. Only days after being condemned, their sentences were commuted by Emirati president Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan and were released, demonstrating the political nature of the trial. The ‘UAE 66 – arbitrary detention and torture of human rights defenders & peaceful political activistsA new wave of arrests began in March 2012 which reaches 66 individuals, composed of human rights defenders and peaceful political activists. Most of these individuals have been detained incommunicado for weeks before being allowed to contact their families; many were mistreated, and in some cases tortured; most have not had access to legal counsel or proper contact with their families, and all have had their detention repeatedly renewed without judicial review of the legality of their detention. Seventy seven of them remain in detention to date – with one individual, Mr Ahmed Abdulkhaleq, a member of the ‘UAE 5’ and Bedoon rights activist, having being expelled to Thailand on 16 June 2012. Moreover, all attempts to provide legal assistance to the detainees are undermined by the harassment and intimidation of their lawyers by the authorities. The lawyers of the ‘UAE5’, Dr Mohamed Al-Roken and Dr Al-Mansoori are now themselves detained as part of the group of 66 individuals mentioned above. Dr Al-Roken was arrested while trying to obtain information about family members who had been arrested. A number of foreign lawyers who attempted to offer legal assistance to the detainees were not allowed into the country. Signatory organisationsAlkarama FoundationAmnesty InternationalArab Network for Human Rights InformationCairo Institute for Human Rights StudiesGulf Center for Human RightsReporters Without Borders United Arab EmiratesMiddle East – North Africa June 8, 2021 Find out more News December 23, 2020 Find out morelast_img read more

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Caryl Churchill’s Love and Information to Premiere in the U.S. Off-Broadway

first_img Love and Information Love and Information marks Churchill’s seventh American premiere at New York Theatre Workshop. The play is a theatrical kaleidoscope exploring more than a hundred characters using wit, candor and nimble use of language as they try to make sense of what they find out. View Comments Related Shows Show Closed This production ended its run on April 6, 2014center_img Churchill’s numerous plays recently include The Skriker, Seneca’s Thyestes,  A Dream Play and Drunk Enough to say I Love You?. Macdonald’s work was last seen at New York Theatre Workshop in 2005 when he directed Churchill’s A Number. His other New York credits include Top Girls, Drunk Enough to Say I Love You?, Dying City and 4.48 Psychosis.  Love and Information will feature scenic design by Miriam Buether, costume design by Gabriel Berry and Andrea Hood, lighting design by Peter Mumford and sound design by Christopher Shutt. The cast includes Phillip James Brannon, Randy Danson, Susannah Flood, Noah Galvin, Jennifer Ikeda, Karen Kandel, Irene Sofia Lucio, Nate Miller, Kellie Overbey, Adante Power, John Procaccino, Lucas Caleb Rooney, Maria Tucci, James Waterston and Zoë Winters. Caryl Churchill’s Love and Information, directed by James Macdonald, is heading to the Minetta Lane Theatre! The off-Broadway show, which was first produced at London’s Royal Court, will begin performances February 4 and is scheduled to run through March 23. Opening night is set for February 19.last_img read more

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How to be at the center of a member’s financial universe

first_imgYou’ve got competition everywhere. If you want to stay relevant, you’ve got to be able to provide something your competitors and fintechs aren’t providing. Here are three ways you can continue to be at the center of your members’ financial universe…Give them what they want: Far too often, we get distracted by things that don’t really matter. Focus on ways you can improve the products and services that your members rely on. If it matters to your members, it should matter to you. If it just isn’t working right, get creative and fix it.Peer into the future: Doing things the way they’ve always been done won’t get you anywhere. In fact, it won’t even keep you in business. Think about where you want your business to go and then come up with ways to make it happen. Not every idea will be a winner, but if you want to innovate, you can’t be scared to take some risks.Teamwork makes the dream work: Surround yourself with others who want to be great. Look for employees who dream like you do and use them. A team of creative minds can come up with great ideas that will positively impact the lives of your members and will hopefully keep their business for generations to come. 3SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,John Pettit John Pettit is the Managing Editor for CUInsight.com. John manages the content on the site, including current news, editorial, press releases, jobs and events. He keeps the credit union … Web: www.cuinsight.com Detailslast_img read more

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Croatian tourist offer for the first time at the most important and largest maritime heritage festival in the Mediterranean

first_imgHrvatska turistička ponuda predstavlja se na sajmu „Escale à Sète“, najznačajnijem i najvećem festivalu pomorske baštine na Mediteranu.Riječ je o festivalu u gradu Sèteu na jugu Francuske, koji se održava od 27. ožujka do 2. travnja, a koji objedinjuje turizam, pomorstvo, brodogradnju, ribarstvo te tradicionalnu gastronomiju i enologiju. Hrvatska se ponuda predstavlja s ukupno 10 tradicijskih brodica, a naša je zemlja, zajedno s Italijom, proglašena počasnom uzvanicom ovogodišnjeg izdanja sajma. Tako je uz nazočnost gradonačelnika grada Sètea, Françoisa Commeinhesa i hrvatskog veleposlanika Nj.E. Filipa Vučaka svečano inaugurirano „Mediteransko selo“ u sklopu kojega je predstavljena maritimna baština dviju susjednih mediteranskih zemalja.”Croatia’s current position on the French market is excellent, so in 2018 we expect a turnover growth of up to 10 percent. The key and largest tour operators are currently recording double-digit increases in bookings and sales, and new airlines are supporting the excellent results. One of our main trump cards in this market and what attracts French tourists is the rich nautical offer of our country. That is why I welcome activities such as appearances at the Escale à Sète fair, where Croatia presents its maritime heritage in an organized manner for the first time. “, izjavio je direktor Hrvatske turističke zajednice Kristjan Staničić.More than 130 traditional boats from Europe and the world are presented at the “Escale à Sète” fair, and it is expected that the fair will be visited by more than 300.000 visitors during the week, who will be able to see Croatian traditional maritime heritage and Croatian traditional ships.  “In recent years, the Croatian tourist offer has been intensively presented at the largest maritime, maritime and nautical events, such as the festivals in Brest and Vannes or the nautical fair in Paris. These activities contribute to the overall increase in arrivals in the nautical charter, which in 2017 increased the arrivals of French tourists by 11 percent, but also to raise the overall visibility of the French emitting market”, istaknula je Danijela Mihalić Đurica, direktorica Predstavništva HTZ-a u Francuskoj.Namely, the appearance at the fair was realized in cooperation with the Eco Museum Mošćenička Draga (Kvarner guc boat), Mali Lošinj Tourist Board (Lošinj regatta pasara Primavera), University of Zadar (replica of the 10th century warship Condura Croatica), Neretva Boatmen’s Association and the Association for the protection of the Neretva heritage from Opuzen (Neretva boat and hull) and the Palagruža Association from Komiža (Molo Palagruža sandal and Komiža gundula). The coordinators of the Croatian presentation at this event are the Association for the Promotion of Croatian Maritime Heritage Cronaves.last_img read more

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Keane error costly for Unrequited

first_imgUnrequited was disqualified following his victory in the Children’s Day At Bettyville Handicap at Wexford after Colin Keane failed to weigh in. Ring Chief was promoted to second and The Fox Tully awarded third, while Keane was suspended for 10 days by the stewards and ordered to forfeit his riding fee. Lyons’ assistant and brother Shane said: “If that’s the worst thing that ever happens to him (Keane) he won’t be too bad. He is very upset about it, but we are behind him 100 per cent.” Heffernan went on to land a double and he needed no help from the stewards after springing clear three furlongs out on the Robbie Hennessy-trained Magnetic Force (16-1) in the Boolavogue Handicap. The grey was chased hard by Little Stampy, but had enough in the locker to hold off the challenge by a length and three-quarters. David Wachman also landed a double, highlighted by the easy victory of 4-11 favourite Mr Rock in the Follow Wexford Racecourse On Facebook Maiden. Second at Leopardstown on his previous start, the three-year-old was bounced out in front by Wayne Lordan and always looked in command, having the opposition in trouble fully two furlongs out before clearing away to score by seven and a half lengths. The jockey said: “I suppose he had two good runs under his belt. He is a horse that likes quick ground and he stays well. I’d say it wasn’t much of a contest considering what he has been taking on. He will step forward again. He is a big horse, a big baby. He works well. He is probably better than that and he is just a bit immature.” There were few alarms for Wachman’s other winner either, Fran Berry pressing the button a quarter of a mile out on Que Sera Sera in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Maiden and soon asserting, the 11-4 favourite running on strongly to score by two and a quarter lengths. The jockey rode a peach of a race to win the one-mile-three-furlong handicap on Ger Lyons’ charge, committing for home nearly three furlongs out and getting a terrific response from his mount, who ran on strongly down the straight to hold Coolfighter by two lengths. However, Keane did not weigh in afterwards, prompting the stewards to disqualify Unrequited (13-2) and award the race to the Noel Dooly-trained Coolfighter (13-2), who was bringing up a hat-trick in the hands of Seamie Heffernan. Katie Walsh stalked her two rivals for most of the way on Peter Fahey’s Alton Bay in the Shelmalier (QR) Race before sweeping past at the furlong pole to win going away by four and three-quarter lengths as the 3-1 shot completed a four-timer. The trainer said: “It’s incredible, he has won four for us and he has collected prize money every single time he ran, and we couldn’t ask for any more. He will run once or twice more if the ground stays quick. If the ground goes any way soft at all he will go out until the spring and come back to go novice hurdling. If he improves as much next year you wouldn’t know what we have.” Willie Mullins’ Morning Run (1-3 favourite) easily extended her unbeaten run to three in the Enniscorthy Mares INH Flat Race in the hands of Patrick Mullins. Press Associationlast_img read more

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