Pakistan: Resistance to state violence continues

first_imgOn the Muslim holiday Eid Al-Fitr, Gujjar Nala and Orangi Nala residents, known as affectees, established a protest camp outside of the Karachi Press Club to draw attention to the ongoing demolitions of poor peoples’ housing taking place in Karachi, Pakistan. At the demonstration, protesters connected their struggle with struggles against state-sanctioned terror taking place elsewhere in the world. May 17, protest outside of Supreme Court, KarachiOne affectee, holding a Palestinian flag, stated that Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land, the demolition of Palestinian homes and systemic attacks against the Palestinian people are similar to the government and corporate entities’ acts of terror targeting Karachi’s poor workers. He explained how Israel’s barbarity against Palestinians is like Bahria Town and the Sindhi government’s displacement of Orangi and Gujjar Nala residents — oppressors inflicting violence against the oppressed for the sake of occupying and controlling land. (Fawad Hazan’s Tweet, May 13) Since Workers World last reported on Karachi Metropolitan Corporation’s (KMC) “anti-encroachment” (gentrification) drive against people residing near the Orangi Nala and Gujjar Nala, the state continues its attempt to dispossess the people, while the people continue to resist this state violence. Orangi Nala and Gujjar Nala affectees, along with progressive organizations including the Awami Workers Party-Karachi and Karachi Bachao Tehreek (KBT), protested outside of the Supreme Court Karachi Registry during a hearing May 17. They sought to maintain a court-ordered stay that would suspend the government’s demolition of affectees’ homes. That same day, Pakistan Peoples Party, the dominating political party in Sindh, ransacked Awami Workers Party-Karachi’s office, used by KBT for meetings and organizational work and by the Gujjar Nala Mutasireen Committee. On May 18, affectees were able to secure a stay order until June 1. While this was a victory for the people, the state responded with horrific acts of violence. KBT reported that during court proceedings, at least three homes were being demolished near Moosa Colony, Gujjar Nala. (KBT’s Instagram, May 18) That night KBT reported that Younis, a 32-year-old man, was barbarically murdered by Sindh police during a drug raid near Gujjar Nala. The police operation included a baton charge, which led to a stampede. In order to protect himself, Younis attempted to run away, but fell into the Nala. “The police then crushed his skull by throwing a [large] rock at him.” (KBT Twitter, May 19)Abid Asghar, President of Gujjar Nala Mutasireen Committee, was brutally attacked May 24 for his involvement in resisting demolitions along the Organi and Gujjar Nala (streams). Days before Asghar’s attack, the home of Shakeel, another member of the Mutasireen Committee, was set on fire. Amid growing state violence against resisters, KBT members went to Gujjar Nala May 26 to document the state’s violations of the court’s stay order. When KBT members arrived, KMC employees told them that KMC was at Gujjar Nala to clean the drains. However, demolition workers hired by KMC informed KBT that they were there to demolish homes. After blatantly lying to KBT and violating the court order, KMC began aggressively yelling at KBT members, shouting that KMC members — government officials — were not answerable to the people. The state then threatened to arrest a KBT member for filming the state’s intimidation tactics. Other KBT organizers formed a human chain around him and fought for his safety. After the May 26 events, the KBT issued a statement that they expected an escalation in KMC’s brutality targeting affectees, activists and KBT’s legal team. They called for solidarity and support to ensure that workers’ homes remain protected. (KBT Instagram, May 28)For those of us in the Global North, who reside at the center of the imperialist empire, now more than ever we must engage in international acts of solidarity and generate strategies and tactics to strengthen our alliances with worker-led grassroots organizations around the world. Solidarity with Orangi Nala and Gujjar Nala affectees, Gujjar Nala Mutasireen Committee, Awami Workers Party-Karachi, Karachi Bachao Tehreek and all who dare to struggle against state violence! Let’s build a workers’ world! FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

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Sisi’s visit to Paris: RSF asks Macron to condemn rights violations in Egypt

first_img “We’ll hold Ilham Aliyev personally responsible if anything happens to this blogger in France” RSF says Related documents 2017-10_lettre_conjointe_des_ongs_internationales_au_president_macron_-_egypte.pdfPDF – 140.92 KB Respect judicial independence in cases of two leading journalists in Serbia and Montenegro, RSF says Organisation Follow the news on Europe – Central Asia News As Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi begins an official visit to France, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and four other human rights organizations ask French President Emmanuel Macron to condemn the crackdown on civil society in Egypt and to press for democratic reforms. October 23, 2017 Sisi’s visit to Paris: RSF asks Macron to condemn rights violations in Egypt June 4, 2021 Find out more FranceEgyptEurope – Central AsiaMiddle East – North Africa June 8, 2021 Find out more RSF calls for a fully transparent investigation after mine kills two journalists in Azerbaijan Receive email alerts to go further News June 7, 2021 Find out more News News FranceEgyptEurope – Central AsiaMiddle East – North Africa 20 October 2017 Subject: President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi’s official visit to France Dear President Macron, In view of Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi’s forthcoming official visit to France, EuroMed Rights, Coordination SUD, the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies and Reporters Without Borders (RSF) would like to draw your attention to the deplorable situation of civil society and human rights in Egypt. We are counting on you to remind President Sisi that France does not support Egypt’s repressive practices and believes that major reforms are needed to promote human rights, democracy and civil society. Human rights defenders, journalists and LGBT activists are constantly harassed and prosecuted for peacefully pursuing their activities. The most obvious example is Case No. 173 of 2011, which has already resulted in the conviction of 40 human rights defenders and employees of international NGOs. We urge you to ask your Egyptian counterpart to end the campaign to criminalize human rights defenders and stop prosecuting them for legitimate and peaceful activities. On 29 May, President Sisi approved a new law regulating the work of NGOs (NGO Law No. 70/2017), which makes it very complicated to create, operate and fund an NGO. The new law not only discourages non-profits but also provides grounds for closing many of them and could result in the disappearance of much of the NGO sector. We ask you to appeal to President Sisi to repeal this law and replace it by one that respects Egypt’s constitution and international standards on human rights and freedom of association. It is also crucial to reiterate the position that the European Union took at the EU-Egypt Association Council meeting of 25 July 2017, and the EU’s concern about the consequences of this law on NGO activity and the space for debate and discussion in Egypt. We ask you to urge your Egyptian counterpart to stop practices that violate Egypt’s obligations under international human rights law and Egypt’s 2014 constitution. Finally, we urge you to ensure respect for the EU Common Position 2008/944/CFSP defining common rules governing control of exports of military technology and equipment and to apply the conclusions of the EU Council meeting of 21 August 2013. We therefore ask you to immediately suspend all exports of military and surveillance technology and equipment to Egypt and to suspend all contracts currently being negotiated in these sectors. This suspension should continue until the Egyptian authorities stop their violent crackdown on human rights NGOs and peaceful dissidents, and the grave violations of international law taking place in the Sinai under the cover of combatting terrorism. This crackdown will lead to neither stability nor security. On the contrary, terrorist attacks continue to take place throughout Egypt despite the extension of the state of emergency. All these human rights violations are taking Egypt further and further away from the democratic aspirations that were widely expressed in the Arab world in 2011. The repressive policies presage a dark future, feed resentment and despair, and constitute time bombs in what is a key regional country. Like the Arab world as a whole, Egypt cannot be eternally condemned to either dictatorship or religious fanaticism. Our insistence on respect for rights is a lever to help them escape this vicious circle. We hope that our appeal will be heard and we stand ready to respond to any questions you have on this subject. Sincerely, Michel Tubiana President of EuroMed Rights Philippe Jahshan President of Coordination SUD Dimitris Christopoulos President of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) Bahey eldin Hassan Director of the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies Christophe Deloire Secretary-General of Reporters Without Borders (RSF) The Egyptian president with Jean-Yves le Drian, then the minister of Defense, now the minister of Foreign affairs, signing arms deals in Cairo in 2015 (c) AFP Help by sharing this information RSF_en last_img read more

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