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May 2016
Editor-in-Chief: Nicola Giovannini
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 Highlights

Ciao Marco
 

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Bahrain: NPWJ and NRPTT strongly condemn sham trial and increased prison sentence against Sheikh Ali Salman
 

“No Peace Without Justice (NPWJ) and the Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational and Transparty (NRPTT) firmly condemn the astonishing increase in the sentence of the leader of the main opposition party, Sheikh Ali Salman to nine years. We express our undiminished solidarity with and support for Salman, who has consistently called for peaceful protest, condemned all forms of violence – including during the speech that formed the basis of his trial – and advocated for a fair and just democratic political system in Bahrain through the establishment of a genuine constitutional monarchy.
 
“Today’s shocking ruling, grounded on purely politically-motivated charges, clearly demonstrates Bahraini authorities’ unabated determination to criminalise free speech and suppress any peaceful dissent. It also further confirms the fallacy of the Bahraini regime’s claims to advance democratic reform, rule of law and respect of human rights in the country.
 
“This is also a highly dangerous move that can only set the country further along the dangerous path of political turmoil and disunity. In the face of what is rapidly becoming the realisation of the worst possible scenario for Bahrain, the response of the international community cannot continue to be weak and deaf to the plight of Bahraini citizens. So far, the Bahraini authorities have used this approach as a green light to persevere in their repressive and retaliatory practices against peaceful opposition leaders and human rights advocates.
 
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Syria: Air drops call is welcome, sieges must end now
 

In a joint statement released today, No Peace Without Justice has joined with 57 international NGOs welcoming
efforts by the International Syria Support Group (ISSG) to pressure the Syrian government and non-state armed actors to lift the sieges across the country and ensure that civilians have unhindered access to humanitarian aid.
 
The ISSG's call for the UN World Food Program to carry out a program of air drops and air bridges for all besieged areas – should humanitarian access continue to be denied from June 1st – is a step that could help alleviate hunger and human suffering. However, airdrops are complicated, inefficient, limited in their scope, and risk the diversion of aid. It is unconscionable that the warring parties’ continued refusal to allow aid to suffering civilians has necessitated using an option of last resort.
 

By some estimates, more than one million Syrians are affected by sieges across Syria. The ISSG’s priority should be to end all sieges and ensure full, sustained, and unimpeded humanitarian access across all priority sectors throughout the country, while ensuring that aid is not used as a bargaining chip for political negotiations.

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NPWJ urges Uganda to stand up for justice and not grant impunity to President al-Bashir
 

President Omar al-Bashir of Sudan reportedly travelled this morning to Kampala as part of a two-day visit to Uganda to discuss bilateral ties and to attend the inauguration ceremony of Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni. President al-Bashir is the subject of an arrest warrant by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity committed against the civilian population in Darfur. As a State Party to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, Uganda is obliged to arrest any person against whom the Court has issued an arrest warrant.
 
No Peace Without Justice (NPWJ) and the Nonviolent Radical Party Transnational and Transparty (NRPTT) call upon the Government of Uganda to fulfil its obligations as a State Party of the ICC and arrest President al-Bashir while he remains on Ugandan territory. Instead of knowingly and willingly harbouring a head of State who is on the run from international arrest warrants for grave human rights violations, Uganda should demonstrate its commitment to justice and accountability. Not only is Uganda a State Party to the ICC, Uganda has benefitted from its work through the indictment of members of the Lord's Resistance Army and the arrest and transfer of Dominic Ongwen to face trial for the crimes committed in Northern Uganda. It is ironic - even shameful - that Uganda should on the one hand call for the arrest of the remaining LRA fugitives while extending the other hand to welcome President Al-Bashir. 
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Alison Smith is Legal Counsel and Director of the International Criminal Justice Program of No Peace Without Justice

 NPWJ events

ADHOC: “The roots and causes of Islamic violence? Secularism is the solution”
 

Since the start of the Arab Spring in 2011, divisions between different parts of society in the Middle Eastern and North Africa have become evident. The widest rift appears between those who want society to return to a perceived order from centuries ago, under the emblem of religion, and those who want to promote the establishment of open societies based on the principles of secularity, pluralism and modernity. At the same time, religious extremism has spread within some countries in the Middle East, North Africa and beyond. Its worst manifestation is the rise of Daesh and its acts of terrorism, intolerance and brutal violence, notably across Syria and Iraq, representing the culmination of a distorted and radical vision of Islam.

It is time to put an end to the ever-escalating violence committed in the name of religion and to promote a world in which all may live freely, irrespective of their religious beliefs. It is therefore essential to coordinate and reinforce the voices of the grassroots activists who strive to address the challenges of religious extremism and anchor the future of their countries on the principles of secularism and pluralism. To this end, the newly established organisation “ADHOC: Secular, Modernist and Pluralist” organised, with the support of NPWJ, its first conference under the title “The roots and causes of Islamic violence? Secularism is the solution”,which took place in Brussels on 22 May 2016. The conference brought together prominentwriters, intellectuals and scholars from the Middle East and North Africa,  including the Syrian poet Adunis, the Palestinian writer Waleed Al-HusseineKacem El Ghazzali, a secularist writer and minorities’ rights activist, Rabab Kamal, Radio broadcaster and liberal writer, Ayman Ghoujal, human rights activist, and the Egyptian writer Sayed Elkemani.

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 NPWJ on Radio Radicale

Have Breakfast with No Peace Without Justice
 

No Peace Without Justice and Radio Radicale, the foremost Italian nationwide all-news radio, have an ongoing partnership to provide news and information on our activities to a broad Italian audience. This partnership features an in-depth weekly program on NPWJ’s current campaigns and activities. The program is broadcast in Italian every Friday morning immediately before the main news summary.

Listen to the last episodes

 NPWJ press releases

NPWJ joins 57 NGOs welcoming proposed aid air drops in Syria
27 May 2016

ADHOC: “The roots and causes of Islamic violence? Secularism is the solution”
Brussels, 22 May 2016

NPWJ urges Uganda to stand up for justice and not grant impunity to President al-Bashir
Brussels-Rome, 12 May 2016

Ministerial Sub-Regional Consultation in Senegal to foster effective implementation of UNGA resolution banning Female Genital Mutilation
Dakar, Senegal, 26-27 April 2016

SALAM and NPWJ convene Conference to highlight sectarian division and discrimination of Shia in Bahrain
Brussels Press Club Europe, 22-23 April 2016

 NPWJ in the news


 

Bangladesh's Motiur Rahman Nizami to hang
Al Jazeera / Reuters, 5 May 2016

Bangladesh court rejects Islamist leader's final death sentence appeal
The Guardian / Reuters, 5 May 2016

Bangladesh's Motiur Rahman Nizami to hang
By Aljazeera/ Reuters, 5 May 2016

Bangladesh court rejects Islamist leader's final death sentence appeal
By Aljazeera/ Reuters, 5 May 2016

Forum sous-régional ministériel au Sénégal pour mettre fin aux MGF
CCTV, Afrique Infos, 29 April 2016

Forum ministériel sous-régional au Sénégal pour mettre fin aux MGF
CCTV / Afrique Infos, 29 April 2016

Faible sanction sur l’excision au Sénégal. Seuls huit jugements en 17 ans
Mouhamadou BA, Rewmi, 27 April 2016

Sénégal : Plaidoyer pour la criminalisation des mutilations génitales féminines
APA / Star Africa, 27 April 2016

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