Foreign Policy Blogs

Tag Archives: human rights

A Break in Eritrea’s Controlled Calm

A Break in Eritrea’s Controlled Calm

Understandably, most of the U.S. was preoccupied with Barack Obama’s second inauguration yesterday. However in the midst of the celebrations of yet another peaceful transfer of power in the U.S., word began to trickle out of an attempted coup in Eritrea. It appears that the attempt, led by a ...

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When People Vanish

When People Vanish

Do you remember the term “disappeared” from the Cold War days? It was a common phenomenon in countries with a less than stellar record on human rights and democracy in the second half of the 20th century. Many people — sometimes outspoken critics of the government, sometimes ...

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EU Kicks Off a New Fund to Help Oppressed

EU Kicks Off a New Fund to Help Oppressed

Pro-democracy and human rights movements beyond the EU borders will have a new access to grants from a budget of the newly established European Endowment for Democracy (EED). However, even though The Board of Governors of the EED held its meeting in Brussels on 9 January 2013, which also marks ...

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The Year of the Dragon

The Year of the Dragon

The year 2012 was for Beijing a year to display its dragon-like qualities of authority, dignity, and honor. The dragon is also the symbol of the emperor, so it may have been auspicious for a new leader to be chosen during November’s meeting of the 18th National Congress of the ...

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Human Rights 2012: Year in Review

Human Rights 2012: Year in Review

The year 2012 witnessed leaps of progress in human rights protections internationally, many in fields or subjects that tend to fly under the radar or appear tertiary to traditional human rights concerns. At the same time, these developments tend to be more intangible than the creation of ...

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Ghana’s 2012 Elections: Thievery or Error?

Ghana’s 2012 Elections: Thievery or Error?

The 2008 presidential election in Ghana was regarded as a shining example of a vibrant democratic process. In a typical multi-party system where two parties enjoy the lion’s share of support, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) both earned nearly 50% of the votes cast, ...

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Sketches of Iran: Putting a Human Face to Human Rights Crisis in Iran

  In spite of international hype about Iran, the country’s real stories remain underreported. When it comes to struggles against human rights, for instance, we only hear about the noble work of Iranian activists, lawyers, journalists when they are imprisoned, on hunger strike, exiled or seen in mass protests such as ...

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At Sea for the Holidays

At Sea for the Holidays

During the annual shopping rush of the winter holiday season it is easy to neglect to think and ask where the majority of the conveniences we are afforded in shops and online come from and how it all gets here. Our cars, computers and electronic gadgets, clothing, toys, much of ...

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U.S. Counters Rising Tide of Internet Censorship

U.S. Counters Rising Tide of Internet Censorship

As rebel forces advance in Syria’s north and east and prepare to contest regime forces for control of Damascus, the internet went dark in Syria last week. The strategic importance of cutting communication lines is obvious and it ...

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European Endowment for Democracy: What is on the menu?

European Endowment for Democracy: What is on the menu?

The socio-political development of the Arab Spring has been a real wake-up call for the EU’s policy-makers. Rapid changes in the South Mediterranean once again pointed the finger at the EU’s inability to act swiftly, decisively and audaciously to the events unfolding beyond the EU’s southern borders. Numerous policy changes ...

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The African Commission Takes on SADC

The African Commission Takes on SADC

One of the classic debates within the development field is the interplay between rights and economic prosperity. On one side of the debate are those who argue that development should come first, even if it is at the cost of civil and political rights of the population. On the other ...

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Reflections on Native American Heritage Day

Reflections on Native American Heritage Day

Friday, November 23, 2012 commemorated the fifth celebrated (but fourth annual) national Native American Heritage Day during the twenty-second celebrated National Native American Heritage Month (formerly National American Indian Heritage Month). The Bureau of Indian Affairs is touting the promising results of the “historic meeting” ...

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The EU’s Human Rights and Democracy Promotion Strategy Introduced: first signs of strengths and weaknesses

The EU’s Human Rights and Democracy Promotion Strategy Introduced: first signs of strengths and weaknesses

Two and a half years after the Treaty of Lisbon, the EU showed up with a new human rights face for its external relations. The often repeated words of Catherine Ashton, the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, stating that human rights have to be ...

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Family Planning as a Human Right

Family Planning as a Human Right

Last Wednesday, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) released its annual State of the World Population report, in which it called family planning a “fundamental human right” and underlined the need for increased investment in and a “rights-based approach” to ...

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Obama Comes to Town

Obama Comes to Town

U.S. President Obama is no stranger to Southeast Asia having spent parts of his childhood in Indonesia and returning several times to the region as Commander-in-Chief. And now, fresh off his reelection to the highest office in the land, President Obama will travel to the region next week on a three-country ...

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