June 2005

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June 2005

Contents

Alerts
Rebiya Kadeer's Business Associates Detained in China
Bahrain Activist on Trial for Denouncing Abuses against Women

Announcements & Events
Call for Collaboration: Media, AIDS, and Governance Project
South Africa's Democracy and Development Programme Launches Web Site
Deadline Extended for Senior International Fellows Program 2005
NDRI Releases Latest Issue of Democracy Research News
Call for Applications: Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellowships

Civil Society Strengthening
New Publication: "Guide on Civil Society Organizations Working on Democratic Governance"
Desk-top Publishing Training Program in Central Asia

Conflict Resolution
Newsreels Help Rwandans Confront Genocide and its Aftermath

Economic Reform & the Business Sector
CIPE Feature Service Article: "Post-Conflict Reconstruction in Serbia: A Political Economy View"

Elections
HIV/AIDS' Impact on Democratic Governance
Call for Collaboration to Build an Elections Resource Center
South Asian Regional Dialogue on Free, Fair and Credible Elections
Publication on Conducting Elections for Public Representatives

Human Rights
Darfur: Lives Destroyed-a Web Documentary
Conference on Srebrenica Genocide
Report: Miscarriage of Jusice in Bindunuwewa Massacre
Yongyi Song Selected as 2005 Recipient of ALA Paul Howard Award
Final Report from Ghana's National Reconciliation Commission Available
Seminar on the Right of Return of Bhutanese Refugees
New Business and Human Rights Center

International Democracy Assistance & Solidarity
Club of Madrid Launches a Project on Bolivia and a Project on Africa
Arab-Chilean Exchange in Santiago

Internet, Media, & Freedom of Expression
IFEX Launches Arabic Newsletter on Freedom of Expression
"MobileActive" Convergence: Using Cell Phones for Civic Engagement

Legislative Development and Assistance
Best Parliamentary Practices on Budget Reviews

Political and Civic Participation of Youth
Summer School for Youth in Moldova
West African Youth Parliamentary Forum on NEPAD
Traveling Seminar on Participation of Youth in Social Change

Research
Conference: "Fighting Poverty and Reforming Social Security"
New Study by Freedom House on Civic Struggle

Rule of Law
Milosevic Trial Transcripts Available in Bosnian, Croatian, and Serbian

Women’s Issues
Kachin Women Expose Alarming Trafficking Trend to China
New Study: "Women's Rights in the Middle East and North Africa: Citizenship and Justice"
Women's Role in Politics and Society in Rwanda
Online Bulletin on Women's Political Engagement

World Movement Participants Mentioned in This Issue


 
Alerts
 
Rebiya Kadeer's Business Associates Detained in China
On May 13, 2005, authorities in China raided the family business office of recently freed dissident Rebiya Kadeer, a top campaigner for the rights of China's Muslim  Uighur minority, and Kadeer's son has since gone into hiding. On May 11, 2005, two employees at the Rebiya Kadeer Trade Center in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region in northwest China were detained and two employees of a bank involved in providing her with a business loan were later taken into custody. Amnesty International has expressed concern that these individuals could be at risk of torture or ill-treatment.

Go to: http://takeaction.amnestyusa.org/action/index.asp?step=2&item=11792

Bahrain Activist on Trial for Denouncing Abuses against Women
On May 30, 2005, the Arab Program for Human Rights Activists issued an alert calling on the Bahrain government to drop charges against a leading women's rights activist, Ghanda Jamsheer, who went on trial June 2, 2005, for publicly criticizing family court judges. The alert also encourages regional and international human rights organizations to show their support and solidarity for Jamsheer. Ghanda Jamsheer heads the Women's Petition Committee, a network of activists demanding the codification of the kingdom's family laws and the reform of its family courts. In April 2003, the organization collected 1,700 signatures on a petition demanding legislative and judicial reform of these courts. After a short hearing, the trial was adjourned until July 2. If convicted, Jamsheer could face up to 15 years in prison.

For more information, contact: rphra@rite.com

To read the statement by Human Rights Watch, go to: www.hrw.org/english/docs/2005/06/02/bahrai11062.htm

 
 
Announcements and Events
 
Call for Collaboration: Media, AIDS, and Governance Project
The Media, AIDS, and Governance (MAG) Project of the Governance and AIDS Programme at the Institute for Democracy in South Africa (IDASA) explores and supports the communication chain between political leaders, the media, and civil society. Its goal is to build an environment for informed interaction between citizens and the government on HIV/AIDS issues. Project activities include variety of trainings, forums, and publications and cover four southern African countries - Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

Donor agencies and institutions interested in developing such a project can contact the regional coordinator of the Media, AIDS and Governance Project, Marietjie Myburg: marietjie@idasa.org.za

For more information, go to: www.idasa.org.za (under Programmes, select Governance and AIDS Programme, then select Media, AIDS and Governance Project)

South Africa's Democracy and Development Programme Launches Web Site

The South Africa-based Democracy Development Programme's new Web site contains basic information about the organization. More materials will be added in the next few months. DDP welcomes comments and suggestions regarding their new site. Initiated in 1993 during the run up to the first democratic elections in South Africa, DDP is committed to the promotion of sustainable democracy, political awareness and tolerance, and a culture of human rights and good governance for all citizens in the country. It supports capacity building in the governance and civil society spheres to ensure that both are empowered to contribute meaningfully to the process of social transformation in South Africa. DDP works with the India-based Institute of Social Sciences to coordinate a Global Network on Local Governance.

Go to: www.ddp.org.za

For more information on the Global Network on Local Governance, go to: www.wmd.org/local/localgov.html

Deadline Extended for Senior International Fellows Program 2005
The application deadline for the 2005 Senior International Fellows Program at the Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society has been extended to June 15, 2005. The Senior International Fellows Program provides professional development training for Third-Sector practitioners from outside the United States who are at an advanced stage in their careers. The program is designed to help build Third-Sector capacity in the Fellows' home countries. Fellows are based at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Fellows attend weekly seminars, learn about the work of key agencies and foundations, meet with nonprofit representatives, and study U.S. and international community foundation models.

For more information and application procedures, go to: www.philanthropy.org/programs/intnl_fellows_program.html 

NDRI Releases Latest Issue of Democracy Research News
The Network of Democracy Research Institutes (NDRI) released the April-May issue of its quarterly e-newsletter, Democracy Research News. The newsletter provides information on the activities and publications produced by NDRI member institutes. NDRI is a membership association of institutions that conduct and publish research on democracy and democratic development. It is one of several functional networks affiliated with the World Movement for Democracy.

Go to: www.wmd.org/ndri/ndri-newsletter.htm

Call for Applications: Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellowships

The Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellows Program at the Washington, DC-based National Endowment for Democracy welcomes applications from candidates throughout the world for fellowships in 2006-2007. Established in 2001, the program enables democracy activists, practitioners, scholars, and journalists from around the world to deepen their understanding of democracy and enhance their ability to promote democratic change. The program is intended primarily to support activists, practitioners, and scholars from new and aspiring democracies; distinguished scholars from the United States and other established democracies are also eligible to apply. Projects may focus on the political, social, economic, legal, and cultural aspects of democratic development and may include a range of methodologies and approaches. A working knowledge of English is an important prerequisite for participation in the program. The application deadline for fellowships in 2006-2007 is Tuesday, November 1, 2005.

For more information, including the application, go to: www.ned.org/forum/reagan-fascell.html or email: fellowships@ned.org

 
 
Civil Society Strengthening
 
New Publication: "Guide on Civil Society Organizations Working on Democratic Governance"
The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Oslo Governance Centre has produced a "Guide on civil society Organizations Working on Democratic Governance" as part of its work on Civil Society, empowerment, and governance.  The Guide provides information on a wide range of Civil Society Organizations working at regional and global levels across UNDP's seven priority democratic governance areas, or Service Lines. The Guide is intended for UNDP Country Offices to facilitate their outreach and collaboration with civil society organizations.

Go to: www.undp.org/oslocentre/docs05/3665%20BookletheleWEB.pdf

Desk-top Publishing Training Program in Central Asia
The Polish-Czech-Slovak Solidarity Foundation Announces the next round of its desk - top publishing training program. The purpose of the program is to enhance the capability and the quality of public outreach of pro-democratic NGOs and independent newspapers in Central Asia and to foster the development of pluralism and civil society in the region. The program, conducted in Warsaw by the Polish-Czech-Slovak Solidarity Foundation, will train 20 representatives from independent organizations located in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan. Participants of the two-week training course will return to their organizations fully trained in desk-top publishing. In addition, 11 of selected organizations will receive computer equipment facilitating publishing tasks.

To learn more about the program and to request application forms, contact: fundacja@spczs.engo.pl or spczs@szpitalna.ngo.pl

To request application forms and for more information, go to: www.spczs.engo.pl, or contact: fundacja@spczs.engo.pl or spczs@szpitalna.ngo.pl

 
 
Conflict Resolution
 
Newsreels Help Rwandans Confront Genocide and its Aftermath
According to the report by the International Center for Transitional Justice (ICTJ), the Internews' documentary newsreel, "Justice in Rwanda" has improved Rwandan's understanding of what happened and how the perpetrators are being tried. The documentaries cover the three-part justice system for the Rwandan genocide in which an estimated 800,000 people were killed. This justice system includes the United Nations International War Crimes Tribunal, the national courts, and community-based system called gacaca.

Go to: www.internews.org/news/2005/20050531_rwanda.html

 
 
Economic Reform and the Business Sector
 
CIPE Feature Service Article: "Post-Conflict Reconstruction in Serbia: A Political Economy View"
The Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE) released its latest feature service article, "Post-Conflict Reconstruction in Serbia: A Political Economy View" by Boris Begovic, Vice President of the Belgrade-based Center for Liberal-Democratic Studies (CLDS). The author examines the economic challenges posed by interest groups, political coalitions and internal Serbian politics. The author concludes that although institutions are weak and economic policy is guided by interest group politics, the expansion of small businesses governed by rule of law could facilitate the development of a capitalist economy in Serbia. However, without proper support for legal entrepreneurship, stagnation is the most likely outcome.

Go to: www.cipe.org/publications/fs/index_date.htm

 
 
Elections
 
HIV/AIDS' Impact on Democratic Governance
The Governance and AIDS Programme of the Institute for Democracy in South Africa (IDASA) recently published HIV/AIDS AND DEMOCRATIC GOVERNANCE IN SOUTH AFRICA: ILLUSTRATING THE IMPACT ON ELECTORAL PROCESSES. The book offers evidence of the possible effect of HIV and AIDS on voting patterns and political power shifts based on comparative trends in elections since 1994. It provides the first available evidence of the influence of the pandemic on the democratic process. The book focused on South Africa but it includes comparative information from other Southern African countries.

Go to: www.idasa.org.za (under "topics" select HIV/AIDS and then select books)

Search for Partners to Build an Elections Resource Center
The Kenya-based Elections International is working to establish a resource center focused on a variety of topics pertaining to elections and democracy. The organization welcomes contributions of articles, reports, newsletter, magazines, books, and electronic resources focusing on elections, democracy, and on political, economic and social trends. Copies of national constitutions and electoral laws from as many countries as possible will be highly appreciated. Elections International strives to transform electoral processes to make democracy and peace more sustainable. It monitors and observes elections and referenda processes; analyzes policies and statutes pertaining to elections, democracy, and human rights; advocates for reforms in electoral laws and democratic systems; conducts civic education and skill building programs; distributes information on citizens' rights and responsibilities and elections; and trains officials of electoral management bodies and political parties.

For further details, contact: electint@yahoo.com or Baricuba, General Waruinge Rd, P.O.Box 79053-PC00400, Nairobi, Kenya   

South Asian Regional Dialogue on Free, Fair and Credible Elections

The Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (PILDAT) is holding a South Asian Regional Dialogue on Free, Fair and Credible Elections on June 29-30, 2005 in Islamabad, Pakistan. Participants will include: representatives of Election Commissions of Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka; experts and representatives of civil society organizations active in the field of elections regionally and internationally; parliamentarians; and others. The Regional Dialogue will initiate and promote debate and dialogue in Pakistan on the issue of free, fair, and credible elections. It will facilitate the sharing of best practices among the regional and international experts active in the field.

To take part in the Dialogue and for further details, go to: www.pildat.org/electionsdialogue, or send an e-mail to electionsdialogue@pildat.org

Publication on Conducting Elections for Public Representatives

This paper highlights election commissions as a key component in the electoral process. In particular, it examines the current system of preparing, organizing, and conducting elections in Pakistan in view of the political, social, economic, and administrative realities of the country. The paper explores various election commission models throughout the world and identifies lessons that can be drawn for Pakistan. The purpose of the paper is to initiate debate and discussion on the issues pertaining to elections.

Go to: www.wmd.org/documents/jun05-conductingelections0605.pdf

 
 
Human Rights
 
Dafur: Lives Destroyed-a Web Documentary
"Dafur: Lives Destroyed" documents the destruction and genocide in Darfur, Sudan. The Web documentary was recoded by representatives of Physicians for Human Rights who visited Darfur in February of 2005. Physicians for Human Rights is a global movement of health professionals that strives to promote health by protecting human rights.

Go to: www.phrusa.org/sudan/flash 
 

Conference on Srebrenica Genocide
On June 11, 2005 the Humanitarian Law Center (HLC) will hold a conference in Belgrade, Serbia, on the Srebrenica Genocide. This conference is one of three that form the Center's project "Challenging War Crimes Denial in Serbia and Montenegro." The event will present the judicial truth about Srebrenica as established by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. In this way, the HLC seeks to counter the misleading information put by various nationalist groups in Serbia and Montenegro. Additionally, recently, HLC and a number of human rights organizations, such as Lawyers' Committee for Human Rights, Center for Cultural Decontamination, Civic Initiatives, Helsinki Committee for Human Rights in Serbia, Women in Black, Belgrade Circle, and Youth Initiative for Human Rights, drafted and presented a declaration on Srebrenica to the National Assembly of Republic of Serbia. The draft declaration stipulates that "governmental bodies of the Republic of Serbia are obliged to take all available measures aimed at facing up genocide and war crimes, and assisting the rehabilitation of the victims of genocide and their families."

Go to: www.hlc.org.yu

Report: Miscarriage of Jusice in Bindunuwewa Massacre
The latest issue of the ACHR REVIEW, a weekly commentary and analysis of the Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) on human rights and governance issues, focuses on the May 27, 2005, acquittal by the Sri-Lankan Supreme Court of four people accused in the Bindunuwewa massacre. The accused were convicted by the Trial-at-Bar of the High Court on charges of mass murder of 28 inmates and attempted murder of 14 others at the Bindunuwewa Rehabilitations Center on October 25, 2000. The Trial-at-Bar held the police responsible for removing the detainees' bodies from the scene of the massacre to destroy the evidence. Yet, the Supreme Court justified the destruction of evidence on the grounds that it was done under the instructions of the superior officers to preserve peace. The ACHR REVIEW claims that the investigators and prosecutors systematically destroyed the evidence.

To read the full report,"Sri-Lanka; Miscarriage of Justice," go to: www.achrweb.org/reports/srilanka/SLK0105.pdf

Yongyi Song Selected as 2005 Recipient of ALA Paul Howard Award
On May 27, the American Library Association (ALA) announced Yongyi Song as the 2005 recipient of the ALA Paul Howard Award for Courage. Song is the Technical Services and Collection Development Librarian at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Library, California State University, Los Angeles, and the Acting Executive Director of the Boston-based Foundation for China in 21st Century. Yongyi Song was selected to receive the Award because of his efforts to document and present the true history of China's Cultural Revolution in the face of tremendous opposition from Chinese authorities. This opposition included periods of imprisonment for his pursuit of intellectual freedom. Song's persistence exemplifies the courage which Paul Howard defined as 'the quality of mind which enables one to face adversity, difficulty, or danger with resolution and fortitude.'"

Go to: www.ala.org/Template.cfm?Section=News&template=/ContentManagement/ContentDisplay.cfm&ContentID=95110
The Chairman of the Foundation for China in 21st Century, Yang Jianli, has been imprisoned in China for over 3 years.

To review World Movement's alert on Yang Jianli, go to: www.wmd.org/alerts/world-movement-participant-detained-china

Final Report from Ghana's National Reconciliation Commission Available On April 22, 2005, the government of Ghana released the final report of the National Reconciliation Commission (NRC). The commission was appointed in 2002 to investigate human rights violations that took place between 1957 and 1993, particularly during the periods of military rule. Over the course of 18 months of hearings, NRC heard testimonies from more than 2000 victims and 79 perpetrators. Victims reported a wide range of violations, including abductions, beatings, detentions, executions-style killings, sexual abuse, torture, and seizure of property. The Commission offered the first opportunity for Ghanaians to publicly relate their experiences of abuse, uncover the truth about the past, and seek redress. The report recommends reparations for victims and institutional reforms, and exposes some of the causes for the collapse of democracy in Ghana.

To read the report, go to: www.ghana.gov.gh/NRC/index.php

Press release from CDD-Ghana: www.cddghana.org/documents/NRC%20Report%20Press%20Statement.pdf

Seminar on the Right of Return of Bhutanese Refugees
On May 28-28, 2005, Peoples Forum for Human Rights and Development(PFHRD) Bhutan and Human Rights, Environment, and Community Development Centre (HURCED) Nepal jointly organized a two-day seminar on human rights titled," Right to Return as a Universal Human Right" in eastern Nepal. Participants of the seminar adopted a resolution stipulating that: (1) the Royal Government of Bhutan (RGOB) must respect the Right to Return of the Bhutanese refugees by allowing their return home as early as possible; (2) the Royal Government of Bhutan must take back all the verified refugees of the Khudunabari refugee camp with guarantee of their human rights; (3) the verification of the remaining six camps should be started immediately; (4) the practice of cutting down refugee relief should be stopped; (5) it is the responsibility of the international community to intervene urgently into this most pressing problem in order to ensure return of the refugees; (6)UNHCR and the donors should continue providing uninterrupted relief assistance to the refugees until the problem is resolved peacefully and amicably; (7) any efforts in finding out a lasting solution to the problem should be in the best interests of the refugees.

For more information contact: skpfhrd@mos.com.np

New Business and Human Rights Center

The Business and Human Rights Resource Center, launched in January 2005, is an independent, international, non-profit organization that strives to promote greater awareness and informed discussions of important issues relating to business and human rights. The online Resource Center includes reports of corporate misconduct, as well as example of positive actions taken by various companies and covers over 2400 companies, over 160 countries, and over 150 topics. The Center also maintains an International Advisory Network, including over 80 experts and is chaired by Mary Robinson, former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and President of Ireland, and 20 institutions recognized internationally for their expertise in issues relevant to business and human rights.

Go to: www.business-humanrights.org/Home

 
 
International Democracy Assistance and Solidarity
 
Club of Madrid Launches a Project on Bolivia and a Project on Africa
The Club of Madrid, an independent organization that strives to strengthen democracy in the world, recently launched a project in support of democracy and consensus building in Bolivia. The first Club of Madrid delegation led by Antonio Guterres, former Primer Minister of Portugal, Valentín Paniagua, former President of Peru, and Petre Roman, former Prime Minister of Romania, held a series of meeting in Bolivia on April 25-27, 2005. The focus of the project is to support the development of a new Constituent Assembly through which the Bolivian government seeks much-needed socio-political consensus and to consolidate democracy in the country. The project aims to provide strategic advice to the country's political leadership.

Another Club of Madrid Project was launched on June 5-8, 2005, at the "Presidential Leadership and Democratization" summit held in Bamako, Mali. The summit gathered 20 former presidents of African countries, including 6 members of Club of Madrid, as well as number of development leaders from around the world. This initiative was taken in partnership with the National Democratic Institute in response to the tendency for African presidents to cling to power beyond constitutionally and democratically tolerable limits because life post-presidency is seen to offer little in comparison to the riches of power and influence that come with rule. The project aims to offer outlets for African statesmen to encourage and work on democratization and development efforts throughout Africa and beyond. The experiences of Club of Madrid members, all former heads of state and government, and their continuing work for the public good, provide inspiring examples of 'lives after office.'

To learn more about these initiatives and about Club of Madrid, go to: www.clubmadrid.org

Arab-Chilean Exchange in Santiago
In the context of the Third Ministerial Meeting of the Community of Democracies that took place in Santiago on April 28-30, 2005, PARTICIPA organized a meeting with Arab colleagues to analyze the characteristics of the Chilean transition to democracy and learn from it. Colleagues from Tunis, Egypt, Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq, Morocco and Bahrain participated in the meeting. The first day of the meeting provided an overview of transition period in Chile, highlighting its main characteristics and dilemmas. It introduced the historical context within which the transition took place, its political and social characteristics, its moral and political dilemmas, the experiences of the families and the victims of Pinochet regime, and ultimately, the lessons learned. The second day was spent visiting the some historic sites and institutions that played significant role transition such as the Foundation Vicaría de la Solidaridad, the Memorial of the Disappeared at the General Cementery, and the Park for Peace "Villa Grimaldi." Corporación PARTICIPA is a Chilean NGO that served as the Executive Secretariat for the Non-Governmental Process for the Community of Democracies' third Ministerial Meeting.

Go to: www.santiago2005.org/news/news_24.htm

 
 
Internet, Media, & Freedom of Expression
 
IFEX Launches Arabic Newsletter on Freedom of Expression
The International Freedom of Expression eXchange (IFEX), in partnership with the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (HRInfo), recently launched the Arabic version of the "IFEX Communiqué" newsletter to raise awareness about human rights issues in the Arab speaking countries. The "IFEX Communiqué" is a weekly e-mail publication that highlights developments and issues affecting free expression worldwide. It provides regional and global news on free expression trends and up-to-date information on conferences, workshops and awards opportunities. The "IFEX Communiqué" contains a wide range of material, including information from IFEX member organizations, international media sources, and other human rights organizations. The "IFEX Communiqué" is also available in English, French, Spanish and Russian.

Go to: www.hrinfo.net/ifex

"MobileActive" Convergence: Using Cell Phones for Civic Engagement
Green Media Toolshed and Aspiration, two US-based technology NGOs, are convening a strategy meeting of global activists and technology experts on using cell phones in political campaigns, human rights efforts, and in field organizing. The meeting, "MobileActive" Convergence, will take place in Toronto, Canada, on June 22-24, 2005. It will develop guides and best practices for campaign planners and technology staff. The organizers are looking for activists from around the world with experience using cell phones, sms messaging, and other mobile devices in campaigns, human rights and social justice work, and other civic engagement. Limited travel stipends are available for participants requiring assistance.

Go to: www.mobileactive.org

 
 
Legislative Development & Assistance
 
Best Parliamentary Practices on Budget Reviews
As part of its budget-related advocacy initiatives, Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI-Pakistan) has prepared a document that compares best legislative budget review and approval processes compared to those practices in Pakistan. The document highlights the process-related inadequacies and gaps in the parliamentary proceedings during the previous Budget Sessions in Pakistani Parliament and shares them with parliamentarians and political parties to advocate for their more effective role in budget making.

Go to: www.wmd.org/documents/jun05-bestpractices0605.doc

 
 
Political and Civic Participation of Youth
 
Summer School for Youth in Moldova
The Moldova-based Republican Club TVC "Polis" will host a summer school session on "Youth without borders." The session will provide leadership training for youth interested in issues such as youth participation in political and social life, youth involvement in decision-making process, civic development, and the role of youth in globalization process. Young people between 18 and 35 years from all countries are eligible to apply. The summer school will take place in Chisinau, Moldova, on July 28- August 2, 2005. The cost of participating is 450 Euros.

For details, contact: polis@mail.md

Go to: www.takingitglobal.org/opps/event.html?eventid=7308

West African Youth Parliamentary Forum on NEPAD
The West African Youth Network, a regional youth empowerment and democracy group, organized the West African Youth Parliamentary Forum on New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) in Freetown, Sierra Leone, on April, 6-8, 2005.  The forum, "Forging a Strategic Partnership between Youth and Members of Parliament," brought together 11 Members of Parliament (MPs) and 13 youth leaders from 13 West African Countries. The forum sought to formulate strategies that would ensure the participation of young people in governance, decision making, and the implementation of the NEPAD process.  At the end of two days of deliberations, the participants established the West African Youth Parliamentary Action Group, comprising both youth and MPs, to follow up on the recommendations from the forum.  The MPs also pledged to encourage the participation of youth in governance in their respective countries.  

Go to: www.waynyouth.org

Traveling Seminar on Participation of Youth in Social Change
The Global Youth Action Network (GYAN) is developing traveling seminars on youth activism for young activists, academics, philanthropists, and anyone interested in learning more about the participation of youth in social change. The purpose of the seminars is to showcase important youth organizations and their movements, bring attention to marginalized people and their often ignored challenges, facilitate greater understanding among traditionally separated peoples, and celebrate the diversity of the global youth movement. The first two traveling seminars will take place in Brazil in July, 2005. Participants will visit the headquarters and project sites of many diverse youth organizations, learn about their work, and connect with other young people to talk about activism from the local to the global level. GYAN trip leaders will provide translation, facilitate dialogue, and supply background and supplementary information to put the work of the organizations in historical and global context. GYAN (Brazil office) serves as the secretariat of the World Movement's Youth Movement f for Democracy.

Go to: www.youthlink.org/tours

 
 
Research
 
Conference: "Fighting Poverty and Reforming Social Security"
On June 10, 2005, the East European Studies Program at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, DC, hosted a conference on "Fighting Poverty and Reforming Social Security: What Can Post-Soviet States Learn from the New Democracies of Central Europe." This conference brought together international scholars and policy practitioners to examine patterns of welfare state development in select post-communist states and to analyze how national histories, international actors, domestic institutional contexts and the interdependence of recent social, economic, and political reforms have contributed to differences in social policies and welfare state provision.

Go to: www.wilsoncenter.org/ees

New Study by Freedom House on Civic Struggle

This Freedom House study analyzes 67 transitions from authoritarian rule that have occurred since 1972, the beginning of what political scientists call the "Third Wave" of democratization. The study examines four key characteristics of each transition -- the societal forces driving it, the strength of nonviolent civic resistance, the level of violence, and the sources of that violence -- to determine how successful transitions to democracy are achieved. The study finds that transitions generated by nonviolent civic coalitions lead to far better results for freedom than top-down transitions initiated by elites. The findings suggest that policy makers should offer support to nascent civic resistance movements in order to foster democratic change.

Go to: http://freedomhouse.org/research/specreports/civictrans/index.htm

 
 
Rule of Law
 
Milosevic Trial Transcripts Available in Bosnian, Croatian, and Serbian
The transcripts of the Milosevic trial at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) are now available online in Bosnian, Serbian, and Croatian (BCS) languages. The Humanitarian Law Center (HLC) has been preparing these transcripts since the beginning of the trial in February of 2002 as part of its effort to document and archive war crimes and uncover the truth about the past. In the future, the HLC plans to produce transcripts of the following trials which are before the ICTY in BCS languages: Krajsnik, Krstic, Obrenovic, Nikolic, Blagojevic, Jokic, Mucic, Krnojelac, Vasiljevic, Oric, Limaj, and Seselj.

Go to: www.hlc.org.yu/srpski/Haski_tribunal/Sudjenje_Milosevicu/Transkripti.php

To listen to live and archived audio/video recording in English of the Milosovic trial in Hague, go to: http://hague.bard.edu/video.html

 
 
Women’s Issues
 
Kachin Women Expose Alarming Trafficking Trend to China
Kachin Women's Association Thailand (KWAT) has launched a new report, "Driven Away - Trafficking of Kachin Women on the China-Burma Border." The report reveals an alarming increase in trafficking of young Kachin women and girls from Burma and questions the effectiveness of current anti-trafficking measures being promoted by the Burmese military regime. It is based on 63 trafficking cases that occurred between 2000 and 2004. The cases involve 85 women and girls, mostly between the ages of 14 and 20. Failed state policies in Burma are identified as key trafficking "push factors."

Go to: www.womenofburma.org

New Study: "Women's Rights in the Middle East and North Africa: Citizenship and Justice"

On May 20, 2005, Freedom House launched a new survey of women's rights in the Middle East and North Africa. The survey, "Women's Rights in the Middle East and North Africa: Citizenship and Justice," is a comparative analysis and ranking of the state of women's freedom in 16 countries and one territory in the region. The study, including all country reports and charts and tables, is available online.

Go to: www.freedomhouse.org/research/menasurvey

Women's Role in Politics and Society in Rwanda

The Association of Women's Rights in Development (AWID) recently published on its Web site an interview with Mary Balikungeri, the Executive Director of the Rwanda Women's Community Development Network (RWN). In this interview Mary Balikungeri talks about RWN's work on improving the economic and social welfare of women in Rwanda. The interview highlights the women's roles as leaders, legislators, and peace makers.

Go to: www.awid.org/go.php?list=analysis&prefix=analysis&item=00247

Online Bulletin on Women's Political Engagement

Onlinewomeninpolitics.org, a network of Asia Pacific women involved in politics, governance, decision-making, and transformative leadership, recently released the latest issue of its Online Women Bulletin. The issue contains summaries of the information available on the Network's Web site, announcements of events, and women-focused news stories.

Go to: www.onlinewomeninpolitics.org

World Movement Participants Mentioned in this Issue