Peacemakers Trust posts news, reports or announcements of interest to people studying or working in the field of dispute resolution, conflict transformation and peacebuilding. Inclusion of an item on the media watch blog does not imply endorsement or agreement of Peacemakers Trust with views expressed by authors of posted items.
originally reported 26 July 2011 in the New York Times
By Ethan Bronner
TEL AVIV — Skittish at first, then wide-eyed with delight, the women and girls entered the sea, smiling, splashing and then joining hands, getting knocked over by the waves, throwing back their heads and ultimately laughing with joy.
The women were Palestinians from the southern part of the West Bank, which is landlocked, and Israel does not allow them in. They risked criminal prosecution, along with the dozen Israeli women who took them to the beach. And that, in fact, was part of the point: to protest what they and their hosts consider unjust laws…
Such visits began a year ago as the idea of one Israeli, and have blossomed into a small, determined movement of civil disobedience.
This work is a continuation of an earlier work, Militarism in Latin America. This new report deals with the other violence in Latin America, that is the violence, both armed and political that arises from social struggles that conflict resolution studies centers do not usually evaluate.
PHNOM PENH – In Cambodia, violence against women is a troubling – and common – concern. Ou Ratanak [is] making women’s safety his business. And he’s hoping to tackle the problem for future generations, by heading an organization that works with young adults to change attitudes towards sexual violence.
Listen to the report by Irwin Loy in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
In the recently-released decision in M.W.B. v. A.R.B., the Supreme Court has characterized a party’s approach to the litigation with her husband as “family violence” within the meaning of s. 1 of the Family Law Act, and taken the violence into account, as the court must when family violence is present, in assessing the best interests of the parties’ child under s. 37 of the act…
The court… observed that under s. 37 of the new act, the best interests of the children are the only factor to be taken into account and that “this principle applies to all existing child custody questions.” The judge further observed that s. 37 requires a consideration of family violence, and that where family violence is present, the court must consider the additional factors set out at s. 38. This is where things get interesting.
First, the court reviewed the definition of family violence at s. 1 of the act. These are the parts of the definition which the court considered to be the most relevant to the case, as emphasized by the judge:
(d) psychological or emotional abuse of a family member, including
(i) intimidation, harassment, coercion or threats, including threats respecting other persons, pets or property,
(ii) unreasonable restrictions on, or prevention of, a family member’s financial or personal autonomy, …
(iv) intentional damage to property, and
(e) in the case of a child, direct or indirect exposure to family violence;
I just learned something interesting about women in prison, and it wasn’t by watching.
For the first time, researchers have investigated how actual prisoners — in this case female prisoners — respond to the “prisoner’s dilemma” a famous conundrum used to model and study cooperation and it limits.
In the dilemma, two prisoners must decide whether to rat each other out or keep mum. Although each is better off snitching than keeping quiet, they’ll both serve less jail time if they jointly keep quiet than if they both snitch — hence the dilemma…
She smuggled out the children in suitcases, ambulances, coffins, sewer pipes, rucksacks and, on one occasion, even a tool box.
Those old enough to ask knew their saviour only by her codename “Jolanta”.
But she kept hidden a meticulous record of all their real names and new identities – created to protect the Jewish youngsters from the pursuing Nazis – so they might later be re-united with their families.
By any measure, Irena Sendler was one of the most remarkable and noble figures to have emerged from the horrors of World War II. But, until recently, her extraordinary compassion and heroism went largely unrecorded.
Grassy Narrows’ Judy Da Silva has been honoured with a German peace prize for her grassroots activism…
The German Mennonite Peace Committee presented Da Silva with the Michael Sattler Peace Prize for her leadership on Grassy Narrows’ decade-long blockade against unwanted logging during a May 20 ceremony at the Benedictine monastery of St. Peter’s in the Black Forest near Freiburg, Germany.
“We want to award the prize to Judy Da Silva in order to honour the nonviolent resistance of the Grassy Narrows First Nation against the destruction of nature and for the preservation of their Indigenous culture,” said Lorens Theissen van Esch, a member of the German Mennonite Peace Committee.
Amid the Western media’s obsessive search for a Palestinian Gandhi, many stories of peaceful, non-violent resistance are often overlooked. One such story is that of Budrus, a small West Bank village — dotted with ancient olive trees and cacti — lying very close to the Green Line (the internationally-recognized border separating Israel from the West Bank). In 2003, Budrus’ residents found out that Israel’s separation wall would swallow chunks of their land. It was then that the villagers decided to employ non-violent tactics to protect their trees and land.
We often talk about “the Islamic world,” or the “Muslim community,” but sometimes it takes being smacked with an enormous, amazing data dump to remind us that Muslims are actually an incredibly diverse group — if you can call them a group — who adhere to views that are informed by their cultural and political context as much as their religion.
For their mammoth new study about the world’s Muslims, the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life interviewed more than 38,000 Muslims in 39 countries on topics ranging from morality, to politics and justice, and the relationships between the sexes.
Dressed in black, they stand in silence — straight-backed, dignified and opposed to violence in its many brutish forms.
And after 60 minutes of quiet reflection, they hold hands, voice their first names, say “peace,” and walk away.
Drive down Fourth Avenue in downtown Olympia between 5 and 6 p.m. Fridays and you will see them lined up facing north toward Budd Inlet from near the Heritage Park fountain. There were more than 70 women there on the eve of the war in Iraq in March 2003, far fewer after Barack Obama was elected president in 2008.
They are the Women in Black, Olympia’s contribution to a world-wide network of women committed to peace in a world wracked by violence.
Can Canadians have an adult conversation about aboriginal issues?
Since Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence began a hunger strike more than two weeks ago in Ottawa, in an attempt to get the attention of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, websites such as Facebook and Twitter have been flooded with polarizing commentary over the Idle No More protests now taking place nationwide in her name.
The Supreme Court of Canada has crafted a classic Canadian compromise to one of the most divisive cases on religious freedom it has heard – a sexual-assault complainant who insists on wearing her niqab to testify.
Writing for the majority, Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin said that trial judges can permit a witness to wear the niqab when her evidence is uncontroversial or her credibility is not in dispute…
The upshot is that trial judges are being left to decide the niqab issue on a case-by-case basis.
CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION ETHIOPIA
A FILM BY STEPHEN HERMAN
(WATCH TRAILER HERE)
Shot in Ethiopia by a Canadian lawyer, this film shares the message that when it comes to dealing with crime, establishing an effective justice system begins with the proper collection of evidence. Viewers get a fascinating glimpse into the struggles faced by victims of gender-based crimes and the Ethiopian Police and prosecutors investigating these cases. It documents the partnership between a Canadian and Ethiopian agency and their work with Ethiopian police and prosecutors to increase their capacity to respond through enhanced crime scene investigation skills.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 22ND, 2012
7:00 INTRODUCTION: DARIN THOMPSON
Legal Counsel, Dispute Resolution Office, BC Ministry of Justice
Justice Education Society Board Member
7:15 FILM SCREENING
8:15 Q&A PANEL
• Evelyn Neaman, International Program Manager, Justice Education Society
• Shannon Halyk, Prosecutor, Criminal Justice Branch, BC Ministry of Justice
• Stephen Herman, Filmmaker/Lawyer, Scarborough Herman Bluekens, New Westminster, BC
AT: UVIC FACULTY OF LAW
Murray and Anne Fraser Building, Room 159
PLEASE RSVP TO daniela.gardea [at] justiceeducation.ca
Project undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada provided through the
Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
Event eligible for “Continuing Professional Development Credits” with the Law Society of BC.
If you’re a coffee drinker, chances are the cup of java you drank this morning was made from beans that were produced or harvested by women. Women’s handprints can be found at every point in coffee production.
In fact, on family-owned coffee farms in Africa, about 70 percent of maintenance and harvesting work is done by women, according to an analysis by the International Trade Centre, but only rarely do women own the land or have financial control.
The International Women’s Coffee Alliance (IWCA) is trying to change that by giving them access to training and networking, and the opportunity to develop new trade relationships…
Fatima Aziz Faraji … manages a family coffee farm called Finca Estate in Tanzania. She’s pushed for a larger voice for women by filling the seats on coffee oversight boards traditionally reserved for men. For instance, she’s getting ready to begin a stint on the Tanzanian Coffee Board, and she’s a co-director of the Tanzania Coffee Research Institute.
So what is the IWCA’s alliance doing for women in her country? She explains the IWCA is bringing women together who previously had no access to each other, or the outside world.
The International Women’s Coffee Alliance (IWCA) is trying to empower women in the coffee sector through training, networking and new trade development.
Filed under: gender — story spotted by Catherine Morris @ 13:19 PST
7 november 2012
By Akshat Rathi
Over 100 nations have adopted gender quotas in politics, giving women leading roles in society. Even beyond these reserved spaces, it has helped bring more women into the work force. This may be good for society, but the means towards this goal raise two questions: What is the reason for the increase beyond the quotas? If so, are quotas the best way forward?
I was telling a law student yesterday that lawyers have taken a perfectly good conflict resolution technology – mediation – and created a Halloween Christmas.
“You know Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas?”
“Not all that well.”
So I explained.
The story is pretty simple. Jack O’Lantern is tired of throwing the Halloween party so he kidnaps Santa Claus and does Christmas instead. But because his nature, his essence, is Halloween, he creates a Christmas that looks like Halloween.
LONDON, UK – For more than seven decades, the complexities and dangers of nuclear weapons have preoccupied the world. Public opinion polls indicate that majorities in many countries favor a world without nuclear weapons, though many remain doubtful as to whether such a scenario is feasible. Indeed, throughout the Cold War, nuclear deterrence strategies were embraced by all of the world’s leading powers without resulting in nuclear war. In the 21st century, though the threat of nuclear confrontation has receded, the uncertainty of future threats undermines arguments for the abolition of nuclear weapons. For a wide variety of reasons, some governments around the world still seek to possess nuclear weapons, threatening the desirability and possibility of nuclear abolition.
... security, peace and social progress and the full enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms, require the active participation of women in all spheres of the economy
By Sheriff Janko
The vice president and minister of Women’s Affairs says that more than a third of the global female workforce is engaged in agriculture. Her Excellency Aja Dr Isatou Njie-Saidy made the statement Friday while delivering her annual message in commemoration of the International Rural Women’s Day Celebration.
Celebrated every year on October 15th, this year’s theme is ‘Women and farm land for food security’. The day was set aside specifically to honour rural women. The idea was put forward at the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995 and the day was selected, as it is the eve of the World Food Day, to highlight rural women’s role in food production and food security.
VP Njie-Saidy said: “Globally, more than a third of the female workforce is engaged in agriculture while in regions like sub-Saharan Africa including The Gambia, more than 70% women are employed in this sector, producing more than 90% of local stable food and over 99% of horticultural products.”
She recalled that in adopting its resolution on the observance of the day, the UN General Assembly in December 2007, cited two reasons; one recognising the fact that security, peace and social progress and the full enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms, require the active participation of women in all spheres of the economy; and two -to acknowledge the contribution of rural women to food security.
“For the women of the world, the day symbolises a wider meaning. It is an occasion to review how far they have come in their struggle for quality peace and development…,” she said.