A guest blog by Afro-Brazilian HRD Heloisa Helena Costa Berto, from correspondence to Front Line Defenders Americas Protection Coordinator (published at request of the HRD, translated from Portuguese)
Good morning, I know you have nothing to do with this, but I have to express myself. I need to make a complaint about how public bodies treat people who thinks differently. I am looking for rights, not only mine, but for a community, defending and denouncing injustices.
La mirada de la compañera Sebastiana es triste, desde hace más de cinco meses exige a las autoridades estatales y federales la presentación con vida de su esposo Fidencio Gómez Sántiz.
Sebastiana Pérez Hernández es una mujer de 45 años de edad. Madre de dos hijos, menores de edad. Ella es hablante de la lengua tzeltal, vive en el ejido Las Perlas, municipio de Ocosingo, Chiapas. Es integrante del Frente Nacional de Lucha por el Socialismo (FNLS).
On July 12-13, 2016, the annual EU-China Summit will take place in Beijing. After two weeks of Brexit-induced European turmoil, China is likely to see this as an opportunity to take advantage of the EU’s member states for better trade deals.
El anuncio del cese de fuego entre el gobierno colombiano y las FARC-EP constituye un momento histórico que esperamos marque un punto de inflexión en la historia de Colombia, brinda al pueblo colombiano la oportunidad para tener un respiro de la violencia endémica sufrida en el pasado. La referencia directa a la protección de los/as defensores/as de derechos humanos (DDH) en el acuerdo de paz es otra de las razones para celebrar.
Por Renata Oliveira, Former Front Line Defenders Research & Training Fellow for the Americas
At the end of April, my last activity with Front Line Defenders was to accompany Brazilian human rights defender and indigenous leader Tonico Benites to Brussels. Tonico had the chance to meet with several policymakers and diplomats to discuss the challenges faced by indigenous persons in Brazil, particularly his group, the Guarani-Kaiowás. As a Brazilian who comes from a state that has practically decimated its native population, I thought I already knew how bad the situation was.
I returned last week from a visit to Palestine and Israel. Over six days my colleague and I met with brilliant, tenacious, creative and brave human rights defenders who work non-violently on behalf of others in the brutally occupied West Bank or in an increasingly hostile Israel. We were not allowed access to meet with beleaguered human rights defenders in Gaza.
According to the Brazilian Committee of Human Rights Defenders, at least 24 human rights defenders (HRDs) have been killed in the first four months of 2016. This places Brazil at the top of the list of killings of HRDs reported to Front Line Defenders this year.
Last week the government and people of Eritrea celebrated 25 years since independence. No one can deny the courage, resilience and sacrifice of those Eritreans who fought for the independence of their country, yet sadly this very fact prompts the question as to what exactly there is to celebrate 25 years on.