Posts Tagged ‘Spain’

Bartolome de las Casas, an award specially for indigenous peoples

July 14, 2017

portada

Photo: Leader of Peru’s Ashaninka indigenous people, Ruth Buendia, was handed over the Bartolome de las Casas Prize from the Government of Spain. ANDINA/Difusión

Granted already in 2014, King Felipe VI of Spain presented the 23rd Bartolome de las Casas Award on Tuesday 4 July to Ruth Buendia, for her leadership skills as chairwoman of the Central Ashaninka del Rio Ene (CARE), a local organization in Peru that gathers 17 indigenous communities and works to defend the rights of the Ashaninka people in the Ene River Valley.the award honors her significant contribution to human and sustainable development, as well as her environmental protection work.  The jury acknowledged Buendia’s efforts to provide access to public health and education services across the communities. Also, she managed to stop the construction of the Patizipatango hydroelectric dam, which prevented arable lands of 10 communities from being flooded.

In 2014, Buendia received also the Goldman Environmental Prize, dubbed the Green Nobel Prize, which recognizes individuals for sustained and significant efforts to protect and enhance the natural environment, often at great personal risk.  See also: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2016/09/01/violence-against-environmental-human-rights-defenders-one-of-the-worst-trends-in-recent-years/

The Bartolome de las Casas Award was also granted to Colombia‘s Fundacion Caminos de Identidad —FUCAI (Roads to Identity Foundation) for its constant work strengthening identity and autonomy of indigenous peoples in different fields: education, food sovereignty, family, childhood and youth.

Side event 6 march 2017: Environmental Human Rights Defenders

March 3, 2017

The Permanent Mission of Spain, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the United Nations Environment Program, the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, the Universal Rights Group, ABColombia, CIDSE, Franciscans International, ISHR, Kolko, Oidhac, and PBI are organizing a side event during the UN Human Rights Council.

Environmental Human Rights Defenders: Responding to a Global Crisis

Monday 6 March 2017 12h30 – 14h30 Room XXVII, Palais des Nations (Simultaneous interpretation English-Spanish)

Panel discussion:

Professor John Knox, UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, Member of the Board of Trustees, Universal Rights Group (URG)

Michel Forst, UN Special Rapporteur on human rights defenders

Amanda Kron, Legal Officer, UN Environment (UNEP)

Johana Rocha, Environmental and Human Rights Lawyer, Research Centre for Social Justice ‘Tierra Digna’ (Colombia)

Isela González Díaz, Alianza Sierra Madre (Mexico)

Objectives

• Raise the profile of the situation of environmental human rights defenders

• Move the international human rights community, especially members of the Human Rights Council, towards a greater understanding of that situation, and towards a greater determination to improve support for the work of EHRDs and protection of their rights.

• Launch new URG Policy Report, authored by Professor John Knox, UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, on the global situation of EHRDs.

• Present the Special Rapporteur’s recommendations to policymakers and policy-influencers.

• Launch new online resource portal for EHRDs. The portal has been created by the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, URG, Not One More (N1M) and Global Witness, following proposals made by EHRDs themselves during consultations in Europe and Asia. Its development was made possible thanks to the generous support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Spain.

fFor some of my earlier posts on environmental defenders, see: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/tag/environmental-activists/

http://www.universal-rights.org/events-detail/interface-human-rights-protection-environmental-conservation-situation-environmental-human-rights-defenders/

Refugee Olympic Teams and Turkish pianist are given human rights awards

December 19, 2016

Human rights awards – one of my favorite topics [https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/?s=human+rights+awards] – come  in many shapes and forms. Here two special ones: the first concerns a handicapped swimmer from Syria and other refugee related recipients (in Madrid) and the second a Turkish pianist (in Bonn).

Ibrahim Al Hussein - Human Rights Award Spain
Ibrahim Al Hussein receiving the Human Rights Award from the Spanish General Council the Bar © • IPC

Read the rest of this entry »

Preview of Human Rights Defenders stuff at the upcoming Human Rights Council starting 15 June

June 12, 2015

The UN Human Rights Council will hold its 29th regular session at the United Nations in Geneva from 15 June to 3 July. Courtesy of the International Service for Human Rights, here is my selection of what is directly relevant to Human Rights Defenders: ISHR-logo-colour-high

– During the session, Norway, along with other States, will deliver a statement calling on all States to ensure that human rights defenders are able to carry out their vital work free from arbitrary detention and other restrictions. Read the rest of this entry »

More on impunity: Guatemala’s ex-police chief, jailed for life, in appeal before Swiss court

May 7, 2015

Erwin Sperisen in 2007

Guatemala ex-police chief Erwin Sperisen in 2007

This morning’s post about impunity in Colombia, could be combined with the case of Erwin Sperisen, Guatemala’s ex-police chief, who in 2014 was sentenced to life in prison in Switzerland over the deaths of seven prisoners in 2006. His appeal is currently (4 to 8 May) serving before the Criminal Chamber of Geneva’s Court of Justice in Switzerland. The Prosecutor has again demanded life imprisonment. Sperisen could not be extradited as has Swiss-Guatemalan dual nationality. Sperisen was tried under a law allowing Swiss nationals to be tried in their own country for crimes committed abroad. [The former Guatemalan Interior Minister Carlos Vielmann, who fled the country at the same time as Sperisen, is due to stand trial on similar charges in Spain.]

More information about this case can be found at http://www.trial-ch.org/guatemala-en/index.html. TRIAL (TRack Impunity Always) is a very interesting NGO that goes after the perpetrators. The mirror image of a Gallery of Human Rights Defenders so to say!

Guatemala ex-police chief jailed for life by Swiss court – BBC News.

Women Who Defend Human Rights – a series by Protection International

December 12, 2014

 

Protection Int'I_logo_final_vertical_72dpiTo shine a light on the courageous work of women human rights defenders (WHRDs) worldwide, the NGO Protection International announces the launch of a series of interviews with women who defend human rights across the globe, from December and continuing in 2015, each month will see a new portrait of a WHRD.

alejandra

This month’s conversation is with Alejandra Ancheita, a leading human rights defender from Mexico and winner of the 2014 Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders. Alejandra is the founder and executive director of The Project of Economic, Cultural, and Social Rights. To read the interview and watch the (Vimeo) video that goes with it go to Protection International’s website (see link below).
Other outstanding women lined up in the months to come include Rehana Hashmi (Pakistan), Eva Bande (Indonesia), María Martín (Spain), Porntip Honchai (Thailand).

Rehana Hashimi 
rehana

Eva Bande
eva


María Martín 
maria

 

Porntip Honchai
porntip

 

 

 


The Women Who Defend Human Rights – Alejandra AncheitaProtection International
.

Human Rights Groups Welcome Spanish Court’s Decision to Acquit Judge Baltasar Garzón

February 28, 2012

On 27 February 2012 an impressive array of international NGOs welcomed the decision by the Criminal Chamber of the Spanish Supreme Court to acquit the judge and human rights defender Baltasar Garzón. The organizations include: the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights (ECCHR), Lawyers Rights Watch Canada (LRWC), the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), Asociación pro Derechos Humanos de España (APDHE), Asociación Española para el Derecho Internacional de los Derechos Humanos (AEDIDH), the Due Process of Law Foundation (DPLF) and Rights International Spain (RIS). The stated: “… We have previously issued a statement https://docs.google.com/file/d/0ByBM8_x9YdxiOTllZTE4YzYtNGQ1Mi00NGQ1LWJlNTgtMDhjNDliMDE4MzYx/edit?pli=1 warning the international community and Spanish society of the danger that the process posed to both judicial independence and access to justice for victims of crimes committed during the Spanish Civil War and the Franco regime. We welcome the Supreme Court’s decision to finally acquit Judge Baltasar Garzón of the malfeasance charges against him. However, at the same time, we strongly reaffirm that grave damage has been done to both Judge Garzón and judicial independence more broadly. Judge Garzón should never have been prosecuted for complying with the clear obligation under international law to investigate grave violations of human rights.”

 

The organizations added that the critical question that motivated the prosecution of Judge Garzón has not been adequately answered: “Who has the legal authority to investigate crimes committed during the Spanish Civil War and the Franco regime?” “We remind the Supreme Court of its obligation to rule on this issue of legal authority or competency raised before it. Determination of this pressing issue was inexplicably subordinated to the malfeasance prosecution against Judge Garzón and as a result has unjustifiably remained pending for over two years. Our organizations call on the Supreme Court to consider and determine, in accordance with its constitutional mandate and principles of international law, what courts have the authority to investigate and provide effective remedy for the 114,266 enforced disappearances and extra-judicial killings committed during the Civil War and Franco regime that followed. We also call on the Court to confirm the applicability of national and international law to the investigation and redress of these and other serious crimes against international law.”

 

Along with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the UN Human Rights Committee, the NGOs call on Spain to repeal its 1977 Amnesty Law as it violates the international law obligations Spain has assumed since that year and the Spanish Constitution itself (articles 1.1, 9, 10.2, 95 and 96).  

Spain: Human Rights Groups Welcome Spanish Court’s Decision to Acquit Judge Baltasar Garzón / February 27, 2012 / Urgent Interventions / Human rights defenders / OMCT.