Posts Tagged ‘Crete’

Knife attack targets migrants in Crete, Greece

August 16, 2013

The knife attack is just the latest in a spate of violent xenophobic and racist attacks in Greece.

The Greek authorities must act immediately to curb the growing spate of xenophobic and racist attacks Amnesty International said on 14 August 2013. It follows a brutal knife attack by a mob of around 20 men on two Pakistani migrants in Heraklion on the island of Crete Read the rest of this entry »

HURIDOCS exists 30 years: my interview now on line

November 30, 2012


Hans Thoolen talks about the excitement of founding HURIDOCS, why the human rights community nowadays resembles a church with too many priests (and too few believers) and what made Latin American human rights defenders embrace technology before everyone else. Looking back at decades of involvement in human rights work, he also sketches out his idea of a multimedia platform that gives human rights defenders the space to inspire others. 

What was the most exciting idea about founding HURIDOCS?
It started for me and the others at this conference in 1979 near Paris. During this conference we sensed there was space for better cooperation among NGOs, especially with new technology. Mind you: this was 1979, well before the internet, and information technology was hardly used. Our idea was to somewhere, somehow seek some level of agreement among NGOs – or at least to create the tools with which working together would be possible in the future.

in 1982 Quito with Jose Antonio Viera de Gallo from Chile

Hans Thoolen (second from right) at the Quito conference in Spring 1982, the most important conference before HURIDOCS was officially founded a few months later.

How did you move on from there?
That idea survived the meeting and there was some money left over from the Ford Foundation and that was used to have informal consultations. So for a few years, Martin Ennals, who had just stepped down as secretary-general of Amnesty International, Friederike Knabe, Laurie Wiseberg, Bjorn Stormorken and myself (working for the International Commission of Jurists) were the people who worked on the follow-up. We had meetings in London, Brussels, Oslo and Geneva and we were asking NGOs what they thought of the potential of information technology and testing out ideas on information exchange.

That slowly lead to the first big conference, in Quito, Ecuador, in 1982, partly because the Latinos had taken to the use of technology well before the West – in the NGO world, not in the business world, of course. This maybe was surprising, but when you thought about it, not that strange.

Why not? And how did this lead to the founding of HURIDOCS?



and the rest you have to read yourself on: