Seks Sahrawiere afbryder sultestrejke – forventes løsladt

Efter at have indgået en aftale med de Marokkanske myndigheder, har seks af de 36 sultestrejkende Sahrawiere afbrudt deres sultestrejke, og forventes løsladt i løbet af et par dage som en følge af denne aftale. Det drejer sig om de følgende: Ali Salem Tamek, Brahim Dahane, Ahmed Nasiri, Yahdih Tarouzi, Rachid Sghir og Saleh Labihi. Sultestrejken begyndte den 18. marts, og de sultestrejkende Sahrawier er alle i en kritisk helbredsmæssig tilstand.

De sultestrejkende er kommet med følgende udtalelse:

“We want to announce to the public that we have decided to suspend our open hunger strike on the evening of Tuesday, April 27th, 2010, after we have received pledges from the Moroccan authorities following many dialogues and meetings during the last two weeks of the strike regarding our case. Read more of this post

FN vil fortsat spille “balancerende” rolle i Vestsahara

Efter at have afholdt diskussioner med Polisarios generalsekretær, Mohamed Abdelaziz, i New York den 23. april, udtrykte FNs generalsekretær, Ban Ki-Moon, bekymring over de menneskerettighedsovertrædelser, der finder sted i forbindelse med Marokkos ulovlige besættelse af Vestsahara. Ban Ki-Moon lovede i går Mohamed Abdelaziz, at ”FN fortsat vil indtage en aktiv og balancerende rolle i forsøget på at finde en løsning på Vestsahara-konflikten der indebærer selvbestemmelse for Vestsaharas befolkning”, og at han desuden var ”meget bekymret over menneskerettighedsovertrædelserne i Vestsahara”. Read more of this post

VM i Sydafrika nærmer sig

Ud over den næsten euforiske stemning der hersker i Sydafrika over at skulle afholde VM om under to måneder, er der desuden en forsigtig optimisme i forhold til holdets chancer i turneringen. Træner Carlos Alberto Parreira, der tidligere har ført sit fødeland Brasilien til VM-sejr i 1994,  har efter sigende været vred over kvaliteten af modstandere i optaktskampene, men mener at holdet stille og roligt er ved at spille sig i form og spille som en enhed. ”Alle på holdet ved at VM er lige om hjørnet, og forventningerne er høje fra vores tilhængere, så vi må spille som et kollektiv”, sagde Parreira således i et interview for nyligt. Read more of this post

Global identity?

Does history show that humanity is gradually, but irrecoverably, moving towards a larger and larger sense of a common identity? Is humanity, despite obvious setbacks and hiccups, moving towards a greater sense of moral obligation towards not only ones family, clan, or nation, but towards all humans – and perhaps, in extension to this in some far-off future, towards all living beings? Or are we actually still bogged down in a Christian, Communist, Rostowian or Fukuyama-like “end of history”-syndrome, in insisting that our societies, thought and morals necessarily move forward or that our society and morals constitute the high point of history? Read more of this post

African communalism: Music

Before Africa was colonised, the continent was characterised by a large degree of pluralism and flexibility. The continent consisted not of closed reproducing entities, equipped with unique unchanging cultures, but of more fluid units that would readily incorporate outsiders (even whites) into the community as long as they accepted its customs, and where the sense of obligation and solidarity went beyond that of the nuclear family. An example of such inclusiveness were the South African Xhosa who limited Xhosadom not along ethnic or geographical lines but along political. All persons or groups who accepted the rule of the paramount chief became Xhosa. Pre-colonial African societies were of a highly varied nature. They could be either stateless, state run or kingdoms, but most were founded on the principles of communalism in that they were self-governing, autonomous entities, and in that all members took part, directly or indirectly, in the daily running of the tribe. Read more of this post

Multidimensional development

The interrelation or interdependence of the various areas that make up any development strategy is increasingly important, also bearing the cultural or psychological aspects of development and the partnership ideal in mind.

That the focus in the development world as a whole has widened somewhat in recent years, from a rather narrow and one-dimensional focus that saw economic and financial remedies as sufficient, to one that more willingly includes other areas such as culture and identity, is here apparent. This is so, although the overall focus is still largely upon economic remedies. Such one-dimensionality pre-supposes that all human beings behave in more or less the same way, something that seems unlikely in all but the most fundamental matters. Read more of this post

The relevance of Black Consciousness today

To truly be able to determine whether Black Consciousness is relevant today, an analysis of the way South Africa has fared under the ANC’s administration is necessary, something that is outside the scope of this article. Nevertheless, it is possible to suggest some overarching areas in which Black Consciousness can still inform or develop present day South Africa.

Steve Biko, by pointing out that any “change in color of the occupier does not necessarily change the system” and thus that true liberation requires social change, is alluding to the same neo-colonial tendencies that Fanon warned of. The relevance of Black Consciousness in a social context is therefore to be judged on whether South Africa has achieved real social change, as well as on the quality of Black Consciousness’ social and political alternatives to the present-day policies of the ANC. Read more of this post

Neo-colonialism

The deeply embedded nature of colonialist discourse in the colonial period meant that the psychological transcendence of colonialism was not simple and straightforward. Much of the complexes and tendencies of the colonial period continued after the de-colonisation period, in Africa as well as the West, proving the need for psychological liberation on top of the (partial) physical liberation achieved at independence.

Post-independence African rulers, most of whom had Western university degrees, might have condemned the West publicly but they secretly admired it, denigrating African history, culture and indigenous institutions in much the same way as had the colonialists, eagerly modernising their countries along Western lines. Along with the “obsession with grandeur” that most of these leaders showed, this demonstrated both a lack of psychological liberation from colonial discourse and an inferiority complex. Kenya’s former president Moi’s claim (in 1991) that Kenya was “at least 200 years behind the West”  exemplifies this. Moreover, many of these leaders were seemingly as elitist as the colonisers, dismantling little of the oppressive colonial administrative machinery and employing the same instruments of coercion and tyranny that colonialists had widely used. Read more of this post

How do we solve Zimbabwe’s problems?

Many had turned up to hear and participate in the lecture and discussion on Zimbabwe in Copenhagen on April 13 given by Earnest Mudzengi from the Zimbabwean National Constitutional Assembly (NCA), and Venitia Govender, a South African human rights activist and NCA-advisor. Read more of this post

Sultestrejkende Sahrawier i livsfare

Støtte-appeller fra hele verden strømmer ind til de 36 sultestrejkende Sahrawier (oprindelige indbyggere i Vestsahara) der nu har sultestrejket i over fire uger i et Marokkansk fængsel. Sultestrejken begyndte den 18. marts, og de 36 samvittighedsfanger befinder sig nu i en kritisk helbredsmæssig tilstand. Internationale observatører og lokale NGO’er advarer ligefrem om, at de sultestrejkende Sahrawier er i decideret livsfare, og anmoder de Marokkanske myndigheder om at frigive fangerne.

De sultestrejkende menneskerettighedsaktivister sultestrejker som en protest mod Marokkos illegale invasion og besættelse af Vestsahara, samt de vedvarende menneskerettighedsovertrædelser, ”forsvindinger”, uretfærdige retssager og tortur som den Marokkanske besættelsesmagt er ansvarlig for. Read more of this post

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