Moroccan human rights violations on the rise

“Severe beatings, sexual violence, and other forms of ill-treatment [against migrants] appear to be on the rise,” United Nations Special Rapporteur on torture, Juan E. Méndez,  said Saturday after returning from an eight-day mission to Morocco.

The mission included a two-day visit to El Aaiun, in occupied Western Sahara, where Méndez said he was “overwhelmed” by hundreds of victims and civil society representatives who wished to report to him on Moroccan human rights violations. Read more of this post

Maxwell and Musa case continues

The case against student leaders Maxwell Dlamini and Musa Ngubeni continued today at Sigodvweni Police Station in Matsapha, Swaziland.

“Today the case progressed with two state witnesses giving evidence. After submissions from witnesses and a cross examination by the defense, the case has been postponed to the 28th of September,” the Foundation for Socio-Economic Justice Informations Officer, Mbali Dlamini, said in a press statement today. Read more of this post

Leder for forbudt parti bønfalder Danmark om støtte

”Swaziland er på tærskelen til at blive et demokrati, blandt andet på grund af støtte fra organisationer som Afrika Kontakt, der har haft en massiv indflydelse i udviklingslandene, ikke mindst i Swaziland og det sydlige Afrika. Det vil være selvmorderisk hvis man løsner grebet,” siger Mario Masuku, præsidenten for Swazilands største illegale politiske parti, PUDEMO i et brev til Afrika Kontakt.

”Vi bønfalder Danmark om at intensivere deres solidaritet med de fattige masser i Swaziland, så Swaziland kan indtage landets retmæssige position blandt andre frie og retfærdige samfund.”

Danmark har besluttet at stoppe bistanden til Swaziland – et enevældigt monarki Read more of this post

Young Saharawis are fed up with futile peace process

Young Saharawis are fed up with the United Nations-led peace process between the leaders of the Western Saharan liberation movement, Polisario, and the Moroccans who have colonized most of their country since 1975.

The peace process has lasted for over 20 years, but has yet to produce any significant breakthroughs for the Saharawis, who simply demand the referendum that is to determine the status of Western Sahara that they have been promised by the United Nations. Read more of this post

Reports: Swazis starve because of undemocratic regime

The Swazi government is largely to blame for the economic recession and subsequent increasing amount of Swazis who have to skip meals due to the financial mismanagement of the Swazi government, according to recent reports from the World Economic Forum, United Nations and the Institute for Security Studies.

The reports list low growth levels, government wastefulness and corruption, and lack of democracy and accountability as some of the main reasons for the economic downturn that has led to as increasing amount of starving Swazis. Read more of this post

Swazis want independence from absolute monarchy

Today, 44 years ago, Swaziland gained independence from Great Britain. Like many other postcolonial African nations, after the initial excitement Swaziland’s postcolonial years have been disappointing, however.

Two thirds of the population survives on less than a dollar a day, many on food aid. Swaziland has the highest Aids prevalence rate per capita in the world. And whatever money the nation has is squandered by absolute monarch King Mswati III, who controls the nations land and finances, and who brutally suppresses any dissent towards his rule. Read more of this post

Swazi democratic movement hopeful despite police clamp down

A prodemocracy rally in Matsapha was “violently dispersed by the state security forces,” police clamped down on activists in Siteki and Manzini and at least one activist has been detained, according to banned political party PUDEMO, in what has become almost routine at any pro-democracy rally or event in the tiny absolute monarchy.

Even so, there are high hopes amongst Swaziland’s democratic movement that the Global Week of Action that kicked of today could be an important step towards democracy in Swaziland, not least because it comes in the wake of a month-long strike by public employees that is said to have emboldened many Swazis. Read more of this post

Udviklingsministeren vil ikke diskutere bistandstop til Swazilands demokratibevægelse

Christian Friis Bach ønsker ikke at tage stilling til det problematiske i, at Danmark nu stopper al støtte til udviklingsprojekter i Swaziland (der er givet igennem CISU, en projektpulje der er finansieret af Udenrigsministeriet)med udgangen af 2014, blot fordi landet angiveligt har for høj Bruttonationalindkomst – en i sig selv temmelig endimensionel og arbitrær måde at måle hvorvidt et land bør modtage støtte på.

”Jeg ønsker ikke at fungere som appelinstans over for CISU’s administration af projektstøtten til mindre NGO-projekter – slet ikke når de følger aftalte regler”, skriver Udviklingsministeren i et svar til Afrika Kontakt, der har flere CISU-støttede projekter i Swaziland. Read more of this post