Choike Newsletter - 15 July 2010

A Portal on Southern Civil Societies - Thu Jul 15 2010

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-> 1. In-depth reports
-> 2. Choike Blog
-> 3. Updates
-> 4. Latest additions: Southern NGOs and other resources
-> 5. News
-> 6. Campaigns


-> Millennium Development Goals - MDGs
With only five years left until the 2015 deadline to achieve the
Millennium Development Goals, world leaders prepare to meet in September
to accelerate progress.

-> Events

->International study documents pesticide health harms

->Henning Mankell’s diary on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla

->Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) seeks to expand
intellectual property rights globally

All in-depth reports

Time for the UN to recognize the human right to water and sanitation
For the first time since the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was
adopted 60 years ago, the UN General Assembly is finally poised to
recognize the Human Right to Water and Sanitation. By the end of July,
the General Assembly will consider an historic resolution brought to the
UN member states by the Bolivian government. For many years, the water
justice movement has been calling for UN leadership at the highest
levels on this critical issue - without success until now.
Source: Blue Planet Project
More information in "The water crisis":

The state of lesbian and gay rights in the world
Seventysix countries around the world still consider homosexuality
illegal, five of them punish homosexual acts with death. To raise
awareness on the extent of State Sponsored Homophobia in the world, the
International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intesex Association
(ILGA) presents a series of resources in different languages: an updated
world survey of laws prohibiting same sex activity between consenting
adults, maps on Lesbian and Gay rights in different regions, videos and
Source: ILGA
More information in "Homophobia":

The Millennium Development Goals report
The world is still on track to achieve the Millenium Development Goal
(MDG) target of cutting the rate of extreme poverty in half by 2015 says
a new report by the United Nations a few months before a major General
Assembly meeting is to review progress so far. Many countries are moving
forward, but unmet commitments, inadequate resources, lack of focus and
accountability, and insufficient dedication to sustainable development
have created shortfalls in many
areas. Some of these shortfalls were aggravated by the global food and
economic and financial crises.
Source: UN
More information in "Millennium Development Goals - MDGs":

New report on irregular migration and migrant smuggling
Migration policies across the world are driven by three core concerns:
border and law enforcement, economic interest, and protection. A new
report by the NGO December 18 argues that official policies are failing
partly because protection has been marginalised. Intensified efforts to
suppress migration have not deterred people from seeking security or
opportunity abroad but drive many into clandestinity.
Source: December 18
More information in "Migrations":

Measuring human well-being beyond GDP
The current default measure for economic and social progress is gross
domestic product (GDP): the market value of all goods and services
produced in a country during a given year. However, many question
whether GDP is an adequate indicator of the well-being of countries and
their citizens. A new paper by the Urban Institute synthesizes
alternative indices that assess more adequately the development of all
segments of society including women, children, the elderly, and racial
and other minorities.
Source: Urban Institute
More information in "Poverty":

New gender toolkit for international finance-watchers
IFI policy-based loans disproportionately harm poor women, who often
become "shock absorbers" for neoliberal economic reforms like trade
liberalization, privatization of public enterprises, government
retrenchment, social spending cutbacks, user fees for essential services
and financial sector reforms. A new guide developed by Gender Acion
gives tips for submitting a gender discrimination compalint to an IFI
accountability mechanism.
Source: Gender Action
More information in "Gender in economics":

4. LATEST ADDITIONS: Southern NGOs and other resources

Participatory governance Exchange (PG Exchange)
This site provides information on participatory governance practices and
tools - all aimed at achieving more transparent, responsive, accountable
and effective governance, at both the local and national level, through
active citizen participation.

Blue Planet Project
The Blue Planet Project is an international civil society movement to
protect the world’s fresh water from the growing threats of trade and

-> NGO directory

Sexual diversity

->Argentina grants full equal marriage rights to same-sex couples
The Argentinean Congress voted in favour of the "Egalitarian marriage
law" which will grant equal marriage and adoption rights to same-sex
partners. This and the first ever in Latin America and the Caribbean.
This triumph is the result of a long struggle as well as the social
changes pushed by the LGBTI community in the country.
Source: ILGA


->Conference aims to promote labour equality to strengthen women's autonomy
Government officials, experts and representatives of civil society will
meet on 13-16 July to discuss public policies for gender equality in the
Latin America and the Caribbean region.
Source: ECLAC

->Gender meet ends on high note with new "UN Women"
Nearly 50 government delegations spent the past week at U.N.
headquarters in New York hashing over the progress that has been made
and challenges that remain in pursuing gender parity worldwide, one of
the crucial elements of the Millennium Development Goals.
Source: IPS

->Haiti: responses must address gender
Six months after the earthquake in Haiti MADRE's Yifat Susskind spoke
with AWID about the gendered impact of the earthquake, and described
what a gender responsive approach to addressing the crisis would look like.
Source: AWID

Social Development

->Is global poverty reduction a political myth?
When the United Nations hosts a summit meeting of world leaders next
September to assess the current state of its Millennium Development
Goals (MDGs), it is expected to single out one of the major "success
stories" of the day: a reduction in global poverty.
Source: IPS

->A more inclusive strategy needed for the MDGs
A fundamental problem in achieving the Millennium Development Goals
(MDGs) has been the lack of a more inclusive strategy of economic
development that could integrate and support its "human development"
ambitions, according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and
Development (UNCTAD).
Source: Third World Network

Human Rights

->Israel under review by the UN Human Rights Committee
The UN Human Rights Committee will review Israel's compliance with the
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (Covenant). Despite
that the Committee has reiterated to Israel that it has a duty to
implement the Covenant in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Israel
continues to deny its responsibilities.
Source: Al-Haq

->US-Mexico: Lethal force on the border
Sergio Hernandez Guereca's short life revolved around the U.S.-Mexico
border that ultimately led to his death. A US Border Patrol agent shot
the 15-year-old in the face in Mexican territory between Ciudad Juárez,
Chihuahua, and El Paso, Texas.
Source: Americas Program

->Ecuador ratifies optional protocol on ESC rights
Ecuador is now the first country to undertake all steps to ratify the
optional protocol to the international covenant on Economic, Social and
Cultural Rights (OP-ICESCR). Ratification of the instrument symbolizes
Ecuador's commitment to upholding its international human rights
obligations and realizing economic, social and cultural rights.
Source: ESCR-net


->What South Africa really lost at the World Cup
Underneath the corporate marketing of the Fifa World Cup being hosted in
South Africa is a worrying picture of poverty and exclusion, corporate
domination and simmering xenophobic nationalism.
Source: CounterPunch

->Africa-EU: Activists warn over EPAs deal
Over 15 fair trade lobby organisations have warned the East African
Community leaders against signing the Framework Economic Partnerships
Agreements (EPAs) with the European Union.

Indigenous Peoples

->Brazilian indians protest against dams
Enawene Nawe Indians in Brazil are demonstrating against a series of
hydroelectric dams which are killing the fish they rely on.
Source: Survival

->IFIs must consider gender impacts within indigenous communities
Despite International Financial Institution (IFI) mandates to safeguard
indigenous peoples, gender blind IFI investments can have negative
impacts on indigenous communities, especially when IFIs are financiers
of environmentally destructive infrastructure projects, extractive
industries, and harmful macroeconomic restructuring.
Source: Gender Action

->Land and indigenous sovereignty in Chiapas
>From the struggle for independence, through the Mexican Revolution and
the indigenous uprising in Chiapas in 1994, claims over land have been a
central part of the demands of social movements in Mexico. For
indigenous communities in Chiapas, land is not just a means of survival.
It is also central to their identity and their vision of indigenous
Source: Inter Pares

Information and Communication Technologies

->Using mobile phone telephony for activism in Africa
"SMS Uprising: Mobile Activism in Africa" is a book that interrogates
the use of mobile phone telephony for activism in Africa. The book's
editor, Sokari Ekine, gave her perspective in an interview with AWID.
Source: AWID

Economy and Financial Affairs

->Vain and void, neither G8 nor G20!
As at previous meetings, the Toronto summit of the exclusive G20 club to
which the world's richest countries invited the heads of state of the
major emerging countries once again raised great expectations only to
conclude with an empty bubble. As in previous meetings since 2008
discussions focused on a way out of the crisis that favours creditors
and great powers.
Source: ALAI

->Development aid: Robbing the poor to feed the rich
In producing often 'negative resource transfers' (from developing to
developed countries), development aid and official development
assistance (ODA) essentially remain an exercise in taking money from
poor countries for the purpose of enriching wealthier ones, writes
Charles Abugre.
Source: Pambazuka

Sustainable Development

->Developing countries attack Chair's new text at final session
Developing countries expressed deep dismay and sharp criticisms over a
new draft text of a global climate deal presented on the final day of
the Bonn climate talks by the Chair of the working group following up on
the Bali Action Plan of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Source: Third World Network

-> All news

->Sign the petition asking EU member states to ratify the Migrant
Workers Convention
The Migrant Workers Convention is one of the nine core United Nations
human rights instruments for the protection of the rights of migrant
workers and members of their families. Yet, to date, no EU Member State
has signed or ratified the Convention. Join the call to change this
Source: December 18

-> Support the Human Right to Water and Sanitation
E-mail UN missions to tell them to support the Human Right to Water and
Source: Blue Planet Project

-> All campaigns

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