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MALALAI JOYA NEEDS YOUR URGENT ACTION

In the past few weeks, after Malalai Joya’s return from a successful international tour and interview with a local TV station in Kabul, the warlords and criminals in the Afghan Parliament and Senate, tried hard to silence Joya and kick her out of the Parliament.

Indonesia, Canada must act on murder of human rights leader, Munir

Human rights organizations from Indonesia and Canada today called on the Government of Indonesia to make public its Presidential fact-finding team’s report on the murder of human rights leader Munir Said Thalib and strengthen the ongoing police investigation. Rights & Democracy and other members of a coalition of Canadian human rights organizations working on Indonesia joined the Indonesian Committee of Action in Solidarity with Munir (KASUM) in calling for these measures. Their call comes on the occasion of a one-week visit to Canada by Munir’s wife, Suciwati, who is seeking Canadian support for her efforts to identify those involved in her husband’s murder and see them prosecuted.

Bilderberg 2007: Welcome to the Lunatic Fringe

In 1954, the most powerful men in the world met for the first time under the auspices of the Dutch royal crown and the Rockefeller family in the luxurious Hotel Bilderberg of the small Dutch town of Oosterbeck. For an entire weekend they debated the future of the world. When it was over, they decided to meet once every year to exchange ideas and analyze international affairs. They named themselves the Bilderberg Club. Since then, they have gathered yearly in a luxurious hotel somewhere in the world to decide the future of humanity.

They are almost entirely men and include New Brunswick’s Frank McKenna.

Speakers show two faces of Canada and Haiti

Last week, amid much pomp and circumstance, Haitian born Governor General Michaëlle Jean graced the province with her presence.

This week Euvonie Georges-Auguste, a Haitian women’s rights activist and literacy co-ordinator, will speak in Fredericton.

EVENTS IN NAHR EL BARED, LEBANON.

From Tadamon!
EVENTS IN NAHR EL BARED, LEBANON.
Amidst the confusing, violent and destabilizing events unfolding around Nahr el Bared Palestinian Refugee Camp in Lebanon, solidarity statements and appeals for support are beginning to circulate. Tadamon! is forwarding a few of these statements and appeals, along with suggested sources of information and analysis, to contribute to the understanding of the situation and to encourage support for solidarity-oriented grassroots initiatives to address the emergency. We invite you to check our website, as we will be updating this list.
* The Pride of our Nation Must not be Built upon the Blood of Civilians Sign on Statement initiated by Samah Idriss, Lebanese writer and intellectual:
* Call for supplies for refugees fleeing Nahr el Bared
NOTE: this call is directed towards people in Beirut, who can drop off supplies at a central depot
*Further sources of information and analysis:
NOTE: Tadamon does not necessarily endorse the articles published on these websites, but thinks that they are good references for updated news
- Al Akhbar (Arabic): http://www.al-akhbar.com
- Al Jazeera (English): http://english.aljazeera.net/English
- Al Jazeera (Arabic): http://www.aljazeera.net/
–> To contact Tadamon Montreal:
(514) 664 1036 / tadamon.resist.ca / tadamon[at]resist.ca
–> To join Tadamon’s mailing list and receive regular updates and announcements: Add your email address in the section ‘Subscribe’ in the bottom right column of Tadamon’s website: tadamon.resist.ca

Reinstate Malalai Joya! Afghan MP and Women’s Rights Activist Suspended by Canadian Supported Warlord Government

May 23, 2007

Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s visit to Afghanistan comes just one day after Malalai Joya, an outspoken women’s rights activist and Member of the Afghan Parliament, was suspended. The pretext for her suspension was her description of the Afghan Parliament as no better than a ‘zoo’. But it was clearly aimed at silencing her criticism of the Afghanistan government.

During his surprise visit, Harper said that Canada is bringing, “the light of freedom and democracy, of human rights and the rule of law,” to the people of Afghanistan, but most Afghans’ true experience is violence and misery at the hands of the warlord-dominated government.

Joya’s suspension speaks volumes about the nature of the “democracy” we are bringing to the country. Silencing critics and intimidating or killing political opposition figures is common practice for the government that Canada continues to support.

Joya has been a thorn in the side of the NATO-supported government by being an outspoken critic of the human rights abuses of the warlords that dominate the parliament of Afghanistan. In the elections of May 2005, more than 60per cent of those elected to parliament were from known warlord groups, many of whom are responsible for war crimes committed during the civil war from 1992 to 1996. An international campaign to have the warlords held to account failed when the parliament decided to offer immunity for all past war crimes.

Joya has been threatened and attacked for her stance. In 2006, President Hamid Karzai cut her security funding, proving that women’s rights are not a concern for his government despite assertions to the contrary from the Government of Canada.

In an interview with the Guardian, Joya said: “When I speak in parliament they threaten me. In May they beat me by throwing bottles of water at me and they shouted, ‘Take her and rape her.’ These men who are in power, never have they apologized for their crimes that they committed in the wars, and now, with the support of the US, they continue with their crimes in a different way. That is why there is no fundamental change in the situation of women.”

The Canadian Peace Alliance is calling on member groups and supporters to send messages to the Afghanistan’s Ambassador to Canada, Omar Samad, and to Peter MacKay, Minister of Foreign Affairs calling for Malalai to be reinstated.

Afghanistan’s Ambassador to Canada, Omar Samad

246 Queen Street, Suite 400

Ottawa, Ontario K1P 5E4

Tel: (613) 563-4223 / 65

Fax: (613) 563-4962

email: contact@afghanemb-canada.net

Peter MacKay, Minister of Foreign Affairs

509-S Centre Block

House of Commons

Ottawa, Ontario

K1A 0A6

Tel: 613-992-6022

Fax: 613-992-2337

e-mail: mackay.p@parl.gc.ca

Haiti and a Canadian Disgrace

These two excellent letters were printed in today’s edition (Wednesday, May 23) of the Toronto Star in response to Olivia Ward’s article in the Sunday Star May 20.

The overthrow of Jean-Bertrand Aristide was planned in Ottawa by the U.S., France and Canada


Putting Haiti back together again

May 20.

Olivia Ward’s article in the Sunday Star is excellent in pointing out that the United States blockaded Haiti for six decades after French slave masters were ousted by popular revolt. The U.S. was at the time a slave-holding nation itself.

That history gives context to America’s readiness to intervene in Haitian affairs even now.

The UN presence in Haiti is consistent with American policy. Far from liberating the people of Cité Soleil, UN forces have terrorized and killed civilians in an attempt to root out supporters of the only popular political party, Lavalas. The UN insists wrongly and knowingly that it is instead arresting gang leaders.

On Feb. 15 the UN News Service published an article stating that UN forces had transformed a former gang leader’s headquarters into a free medical clinic. This was false and on being questioned, the UN’s head of media relations there was forced to acknowledge that MINUSTAH (United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti) had only handed out bottles of water and offered free medical checkups for one day following 72-hour mass arrest operations – the UN routinely arrests people without warrant in Haiti.

Most shameful for us is that Canada helped to give the cover of legitimacy to the overthrow of Jean-Bertrand Aristide in February 2004 by participating in the coup orchestrated by Washington and Paris.


Rob Konduros, Cambridge, Ont.

Olivia Ward walked gingerly through her report on Haiti. For example, she wrote, “President Aristide was ousted in 2004.” A more precise rewrite would be: “The democratically elected president of Haiti was kidnapped and escorted out of Haiti by the U.S. Marines while Canadian soldiers secured the airport.”

The overthrow of Jean-Bertrand Aristide was planned by Washington, France and Canada in the Canadian capital under the name The Ottawa Initiative. Another blemish on Canada’s peacekeeping record.

Two female union and women’s rights activists will be in Toronto on May 25 to give your readers their first-hand report.


Jack Barker, Toronto

Death Toll Reaches 80 in Lebanon as Troops Shell Palestinian Refugee Camp

Christian Science Monitor reporter Nicholas Blanford reports from outside the Nahr al-Bared camp on the deadliest internal violence in Lebanon since the civil war ended in 1990. We also speak with journalist Zaki Chehab who grew up in a Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon.

War resisters lose refugee status bid

The Toronto Star: Two U.S Army deserters have exhausted their appeals for Canadian refugee status and now face deportation.  In a ruling released yesterday, a three-judge panel of the Federal Court of Appeal upheld decisions by the Federal Court and the Immigration and Refugee Board that Jeremy Hinzman and Brandon Hughey are not entitled to refugee status.

Tuesday! The People Behind Our Power

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 21, 2007
The People Behind Our Power: Activists to speak on the local and global impacts of our electricity
Fredericton – Three well known mining activists will be speaking in Fredericton on Tuesday, May 22 at 7pm at the UNB Art Centre, Memorial Hall. They are Joan Newman Kuyek, National Coordinator of Mining Watch Canada, Aviva Chomsky, Professor of History and Coordinator of Latin American Studies at Salem State College in Massachusetts, and Inka Milewski of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick.
Joan Newman Kuyek has been the National Co-ordinator of Mining Watch Canada – a pan-Canadian coalition of environmental, labour, social justice and Aboriginal groups – since its inception in April 1999. Her publications include Working for Bell Canada: The Phone Book, and Fighting for Hope: Organizing to Realize Our Dreams. In 1995, her community work was recognized with an honorary doctorate of Social Work from Laurentian University.
Aviva Chomsky is author of “West Indian Workers and the United Fruit Company in Costa Rica,” “They Take Our Jobs! And 20 Other Myths and “Linked Labor Histories: New England, Colombia and the Making of a Global Working Class”; co-editor of “Identity and Struggle at the Margins of the Nation-State”; “The Cuba Reader”; and “The People Behind the Coal”; and translator of “The Profits of Extermination.” She is active in Colombia solidarity and immigrants rights work.
Inka Milewski of Miramichi, New Brunswick, has worked for government and university institutions and not-for-profit research and conservation organizations over her thirty year career. She has authored and co-authored peer-reviewed and popular scientific publications on a wide range of environmental issues. She has testified at Canadian federal and U.S. state environmental hearings and has served as a delegate at several United Nation’s conferences on the environment. Milewski acts as science advisor to several community and environmental organizations, including the Conservation Council of New Brunswick, and does research on their behalf. Her most recent publication (2006) is Dying for Development: the legacy of lead in Belledune.
Kuyek, Chomsky and Milewski will speak about the local and global impacts of multinatonal mining companies, many of which are Canadian, operating in Canada and abroad. Approximately 16% of New Brunswick’s electricity is generated from Colombian coal that is associated with adverse impacts on local communities including forced displacements, violence, environmental degradation, poverty and sickness. The coal imported from Colombia is burned in what is known as the industrial sacrifice zone of Belledune in northern New Brunswick.
This special speaking event is organized to coincide with “Panzós: 25 years later…” – a breathtaking exhibit featuring original painting, descriptive banners, and portrait, journalistic and forensic photography by Guatemalan artist Marlón García Arriaga. The exhibit, on display until early June at the UNB Art Centre at Memorial Hall, centers around the lives, opinions and actions of the survivors of the Panzós massacre -especially the women survivors, who have been at
the forefront of the resistance to the presence of a Canadian-owned nickel development, Inco Ltd.’s Exmibal project on their land.
-30-
For more information:
Tracy Glynn, 454-9527, 458-8747, tracy@jatam.org
For background information on Colombian coal, visit: www.arsn.ca
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