Category Archives: FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION

Ambassadors praise Angola’s efforts for peace in Africa

FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION

An article from O País

The African Union (AU) Permanent Representatives Committee (PRC) encouraged Angola on Tuesday [January 26] to continue efforts to promote a pan-African movement to prevent violence and conflicts, through its commitment to disseminate a culture of peace in Africa

According to a note from the Permanent Representation of Angola to the AU, the incentive was expressed during the PRC meeting, which has been taking place since 20 January, in virtual format

The document underlines that in the same session a communication was presented on the 1st Pan-African Forum for the Culture of Peace in Africa – Luanda Biennial, held in Angola, from 18 to 22 September 2019

In his communication, the Permanent Representative of Angola to the AU, Francisco José da Cruz, said that after the “successful 1st Pan-African Forum for the Culture of Peace in Africa – Bienal de Luanda ”, the Angolan Government is already creating the conditions for the next edition, this year, with the President of the Republic, João Lourenço, creating a Multisectoral Commission for this purpose.

(Continued in right column)

(Click here for the Portuguese version of this article.)

Question related to this article:

The Luanda Biennale: What is its contribution to a culture of peace in Africa

Can the African Union help bring a culture of peace to Africa?

Will UNESCO once again play a role in the culture of peace?

(Continued from left column)

In addition to the expected promotion of peace and security, the objective is to frame the event in the spirit of celebrating the African Union’s Year of 2021 Theme: “Art, Culture and Heritage: Levers to build the Africa we want”.

The PRC was unanimous in considering that the holding of the Pan-African Forum for the Culture of Peace in Africa – Bienal de Luanda is part of the African Union’s efforts to seek peace, with the Department of Social Affairs congratulating Angola’s proposal and calling for the support of AU Member States.

The document presented recalls that the Government of Angola and UNESCO agreed on 18 December 2018 to hold the 1st Pan-African Forum for the Culture of Peace in Africa – Luanda Biennial, in September 2019, in order to strengthen the Pan-African movement towards a culture of peace and non-violence, through the establishment of a multilateral partnership between governments, civil society, the artistic and scientific community, the private sector and international organizations.

The strategic objective of the event is to promote a peaceful and prosperous Africa through the defense and encouragement of actions that prevent conflicts in the management of national and cross-border natural resources on the African continent, as well as to educate a generation of young Africans as agents of peace, stability and development.

The first edition was based on three main axes: Partner Forum – An Alliance for Africa; Thematic Forums: Forum of Ideas, Forum of Youth and Forum of Women; Festival of Cultures.

The 41st Ordinary Session of the Permanent Representatives Committee (CRP) has been running since 20 January, in virtual format, preceding the 38th Executive Council (Heads of diplomacy) and the 34th Session of the AU Assembly (Heads State and Government), scheduled for 3 and 4, and 6 and 7 February, respectively.

The meeting has several reports under discussion, including on the activities of the PRC sub-committees, the Specialized Technical Committees of the African Union Commission, other AU bodies and the Specialized Agencies. The African Union consecrates 2021 as the “Year of Arts, Culture and Heritage: Levers to Build the Africa We Want”. The year 2020 had as its theme “Silence Arms: Creating Favorable Conditions for Africa’s Development”.

Past Virtual Events in January

FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION

Here are events and application deadlines in January that were previously listed on the CPNN page for upcoming virtual events. Unless otherwise noted the events are in English.

Tuesday January 12 8 p.m. (EST-USA)

Introduction to the History & Dynamics of U.S. Asia-Pacific Policies
— The United States has been an imperial power across Asia and the Pacific since Admiral Perry’s Black Ships “opened” Japan, and the U.S. conquered the Philippines, Guam and Samoa and annexed Hawaii during the “Spanish-American War.” President-elect Joe Biden and Antony Blinken are repeating their commitments to reinforce U.S. Asia-Pacific alliances and to the military buildup to contain China that was begun with the Obama “pivot” to Asia and the Pacific and deepened by Trump’s ratcheting up tensions with China.
— Speakers include Corozon Fabros of Asia-Europe Peoples Forum, the ASEAN Civil Society Conference- ASEAN Peoples Forum., Tobita Chow of Justice is Global and Mark Seldon editor of The Asia-Pacific Journal
Register here in advance for this webinar

January 13, 2021 at 7:30pm – 7:30pm MST

The Nuclear Weapons Stand-off: State of Play
Organised by: Ploughshares Calgary
— Our speaker, Earl Turcotte, will provide a clear, interesting and informed update on the new Treaty that prohibits nuclear weapons. Earl is the current Chairperson of the Canadian Network to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, served over 40 years as an aid worker, Canadian diplomat and UN official. For 15 years prior to his retirement in 2015, he focused on arms control and disarmament, including being lead negotiator for Canada of the Convention on Cluster Munitions. Since retiring in 2015 he has focused his efforts on nuclear disarmament.
— Virtual event | link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85810285613
Meeting ID: 858 1028 5613
Passcode: 166927

Thursday, 14 January 2021, 14:00 – 15:00 CET

PeaceTech: Digital Platforms for Inclusive Peace
This webinar will explore how digital platforms can support peacebuilding, with a special focus on the new PeaceFem mobile app which illustrates women’s inclusion in peace processes around the world.
— Featuring Dr Sanja Badanjak, Dr Devanjan Bhattacharya, and Fiona Knäussel from the PeaceTech team of PSRP (Political Settlements Research Programme), with special guest Dr Benjamin Bach, Lecturer in Design Informatics and Visualization at the University of Edinburgh, as event chair.
— This event is free and will be held on Zoom. Joining instructions will be sent to registered participants.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021, 15:00 CET

On January 19, the Basel Peace Office, Basel-Stadt Kanton, UNFOLD ZERO and Youth Fusion will hold Intergenerational dialogue on peace, the climate, nuclear disarmament and the pandemic, a forum of youth, experts and policy makers discussing actions and effective policies for peace, disarmament, the climate and public health especially in times of pandemic.
— Speakers include Marzhan Nurzahn (Kazakhstan/Switzerland), Convenor of Youth Fusion, the Abolition 2000 Youth Network for a Nuclear-Weapon-Free World; Davina Maloum (Cameroon), Founder of Children for Peace. International Children’s Peace Prize Co-winner 2019 (with Greta Thunberg), Prof. Dr Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker (Germany), Past Chairman of the German Bundestag Environment Committee, Honorary President of the Club of Rome: Maria Espinosa (Ecuador), Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, President of the UN General Assembly (2018-2019), Chair of the World Future Council Commission on the Rights of Children and Youth, and more…
— The event will also include the finalists and award ceremony for the Basel PACEY Plus youth award.
Click here to register.

21 January, 2021 @ 2:00 – 3:10 pm GMT

Entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons and the Role of Health Professionals
— Share your contact information below to receive updates on the Global Health Webinar, co-sponsored by the International Council of Nurses, International Committee of the Red Cross, International Federation of Medical Students’ Association, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, World Federation of Public Health Association, and World Medical Association.
Confirmed speakers:
-Moderator; Tilman Ruff, co-President, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW)
-Mahmood Al-Hamody, Liaison Officer for Human Rights and Peace Issues, -International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations
-David Barbe, President, World Medical Association
-Bettina Borisch, Executive Director, World Federation of Public Health Associations
-Erica Burton, Senior Advisor on Nursing and Health Policy, International Council of Nurses
-Véronique Christory, Senior Arms Control Advisor, The International Committee of the Red Cross
-Carlos Umaña, Regional Vice-President, IPPNW
Register here

Friday – Jan 22, 2021, 1:00-3:00 pm CET

Celebration of the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
— On January 22nd, the world will celebrate the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW), supported by over 120 states at the UN in July 2017.
— On this historic day, we call on members of the IPB family, our friends and all peace lovers to celebrate this historical step, and deliver this great news with noise and fun in your countries all across the globe, as the road to a world free of nuclear weapons is now wide open!
— We invite you to join us for a virtual IPB Zoom party where we will celebrate this milestone toward nuclear disarmament together!
— Register to join the event here: https://bit.ly/ipbprt

Saturday, January 23 09:30 AM (EST)

Reducing the Threat of Nuclear War: Invest in Minds not Missiles” A National Conference
— CPDCS has been privileged to work with Jonathan King of MIT and many others in organizing this important national disarmament conference together.
— Though the Coronavirus has devastated the economy, it has not had any braking effect on the Presidential and Congressional push for spending more of our tax dollars on military and nuclear weapons development programs. Thus, we will have to find ways to continue to collaborate and cooperate in the development of a social movement strong enough to reverse the new nuclear arms race. This Conference is focused on that task.
— Speakers include Alan Robock, Sen. Ed Markey, Rep. Ayana Pressley, Rev. Liz Theoharis, Elaine Scarry, Subrata Goshroy, Lindsay Koshgarian, and many others.
— Breakout sessions – including the Asia-Pacific session led by CPDCS – A. Ban Treaty & Arms Control Treaties: B. The Costs of 21st Century Wars and the Politics of Defense Spending: C. Back from the Brink Campaign: D. No Resumption of Testing: E. No First Use Campaign: F. Demilitarizing Police: G. Climate and War/Green New Deal: H. Divesting from Weapons Manufacture: I. Bringing Peace into Electoral Contests: J. No New Cold War: The U.S., China, and the Asia Pacific: K. Moral Budget for Massachusetts: L. Vaccines Not Submarines: M. Campus Organizing
Register here for free

23 de enero – 31 de enero
Foro Social Mundial: COMUNICACIÓN, EDUCACIÓN Y CULTURA

— Hola, Te has inscrito al FSM Virtual 2021 y has expresado tu interés en el espacio temático COMUNICACIÓN, EDUCACIÓN Y CULTURA.
En este enlace puedes seguir las actividades que se están registrando en relación con este Espacio Temático.
— El correo electrónico educacioncomunicacioncultura@wsf2021.net está disponible para preguntas sobre este Espacio Temático.
— Para registrar organizaciones, actividades o iniciativas para Agora, inicie sesión en join .wsf2021.net y acceda al formulario correspondiente.
— En caso de necesitar más información sobre su actividad, una persona del Grupo Facilitador se pondrá en contacto contigo.

January 23 – January 31
World Social Forum 2021: COMMUNICATION, EDUCATION AND CULTURE

— Hi, You’ve signed up to the WSF Virtual 2021 and indicated interest in the COMMUNICATION, EDUCATION AND CULTURE.
In this link you can follow the activities being registered in connection with this Thematic Space.
— The email educacioncomunicacioncultura@wsf2021.net is available for questions about this Theme Space.
— To register organizations, activities or Initiatives for Agora, log in to join .wsf2021.net and access the appropriate form.
— In case you need more information about your activity, a person from the Facilitator Group will contact you.

23 janvier – 31 janvier
Fórum Social Mundial: COMMUNICATION, ÉDUCATION ET CULTURE

— Bonjour, Vous vous êtes inscrit(e) au FSM 2021 virtuel et avez manifesté votre intérêt pour l’espace thématique COMMUNICATION, ÉDUCATION ET CULTURE.
Sur ce lien, vous pouvez suivre les activités en cours d’enregistrement en lien avec cet espace thématique.
— L’e-mail educacioncomunicacioncultura@wsf2021.net est disponible pour toutes questions concernant cet espace thématique.
— Pour enregistrer des organisations, des activités ou des initiatives en vue de l’Agora, connectez-vous à join .wsf2021.net et accédez au formulaire approprié.
— Au cas où vous auriez besoin de plus d’informations sur votre activité, une personne du groupe de facilitateurs vous contactera.

Sunday, January 24, 2021 • 13:30 EST, 18:30 GMT

Webinar: Divest-Reinvest: Towards a Local Peace Economy
Grassroots-led divestment campaigns are springing up all over the world. There’s a reason why divestment is trending, and that’s because it’s a winning organizing tactic. Divestment gives direct agency to individuals and communities to cut ties to destructive industries. Change can be affected on a grassroots level, by individuals (switching banks and divesting retirement funds), by institutions (divesting universities, workplaces, & religious organizations, among others) and by communities (divesting municipal & state public pension funds).
— In this panel, three leading organizers will present case studies of successful & diverse divestment models, including fossil fuel and weapons divestment. Beyond divestment, we will explore how divestment must be paired with reinvestment strategies that advance a just transition from a war economy to a local peace economy.
— Moderator: Greta Zarro, Organizing Director, World BEYOND War; West Edmeston, NY, USA
Panelists: David Swanson (Co-Founder & Executive Director, World BEYOND War;
Susi Snyder (Coordinator for Don’t Bank on the Bomb;
Kelly Curry (CODEPINK Local Peace Economy Organizer;
Join Zoom Meeting via this link
Here is a recording of the webiner.

Sunday, January 24, 1-3 PM, EST

World Social Forum Peace Day. CPDCS/IPB workshop “For Peace, Justice & Democracy: U.S. Movement Perspectives”.
— President Biden assumes office in the midst of a host of national crises that impact the world: a white supremacist fascist insurrection and threats of continuing domestic terrorist attacks, the Covid-19 pandemic which has claimed nearly 400,000 U.S. lives and devastated the national economy, emerging and deepening cold wars with China and Russia, and a national budget that prioritizes preparations for war over human needs.
— This webinar will present leading voices from the U.S. justice and peace movements, summarizing the challenges the U.S. people face and the priorities of the U.S. justice, peace and democracy movements.
— Speakers include:
Rev. Karleen Griffiths Sekou – Director for International Relationships and Organizing for the Black Lives Matter Global Network
Michael Klare – Military Affairs Editor of The Nation Magazine, Co-Founder Committee for a Sane U.S.-China Policy.
Lindsay Koshgarian – Director, National Priorities Project
— Initiated by the International Peace Bureau and the Campaign for Peace, Disarmament and Common Security.
— For more information contact: JGeson80@gmail.com
Zoom link: http://bit.ly/PeaceJan24

Monday, 25 January, beginning at 11:00 PST, 14:00 EST 19:00 GMT 22:00 Yemen

WORLD SAYS NO TO WAR ON YEMEN
Global online rally sponsored by the Stop the War Coalition
— Over 230 organisations from 17 countries have signed up for a call to action against the war on Yemen so far, making this the biggest international anti-war co-ordination since the campaign against the Iraq war.
— The shockingly under-reported war in Yemen has led to the death of 250,000 people and created the worst humanitarian crisis anywhere in the world according to the UN. They estimate that more than 24 million people in the country, which was already one of the poorest on the planet prior to the war, will need humanitarian assistance in 2021.
— The war is led by Saudi Arabia, with the involvement of the UAE, but it is backed by some key Western powers – the US, the UK, France, Spain, Italy and Canada. In particular, the US and the UK have maintained unquestioning support for Saudi Arabia since the war began and are both participants in the war.
— This protest is timed to take place just days after the inauguration of Joe Biden, who has promised to end US support for the war. This is our one central aim – to hold him to his word and force fellow governments to follow suit.
— Among the participants:
Ahmed Al-Babati (British-Yemeni Soldier)
Jeremy Corbyn MP
Danny Glover (Actor)
Tawakkol Karman (Yemeni Nobel Peace Laureate)
Daniele Obono (French National Assembly Member)
Yanis Varoufakis (MeRA25 Secretary-General)
Click here to register

Monday January 25. 11:00-12:30 Eastern USA time/17:00-18:30 Central Europe time

The United Nations and Nuclear Abolition
Cosponsors: Basel Peace Office, Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament, Right Livelihood Foundation, UNFOLD ZERO, World Future Council and Youth Fusion.
— Last January the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists set the Doomdsay Clock to 100 Seconds to Midnight, indicating how close humanity was to a nuclear disaster by accident, miscalculation or conflict escalation. Amidst the gloom of the pandemic, 2021 dawns with some new rays of light for nuclear disarmament.
— On January 20, a new US administration more amenable to nuclear disarmament was inaugurated. Tow days later (Jan 22) the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons entered into force.
— Join us for an international event on Monday January 25 to commemorate the 75th anniversary of UN Resolution 1 (1) – the very first resolution of the United Nations – which established the global goal for the elimination of nuclear weapons.
— The event will include discussion by experts and activists on the political openings for global nuclear disarmament and the vital roles being played by the United Nations and civil society. It will also include presentations of some global civil society appeals for nuclear abolition. Click here to register (if you have not already done so).
January 25 event speakers.
Click here to register.

January 26th, 7:00 – 8:30 pm EST
Dialogue as a Tool for Healing

Sponsored by Pathways to Peace
Sharing our thoughts and feelings by speaking our own truth and listening to the truth of others, is a simple action we can take to heal ourselves and to contribute to the healing of others. Dialogue builds community and through community we do our work to advance Peace.
Please Join Us!
— Tezikiah Gabriel and Kim Weichel will facilitate the upcoming dialogues. In the January 26th dialogue, we will be exploring the questions:
— What is on your heart at this time in this country?
— As committed peacebuilders, what kind of positive action can we take to begin to heal ourselves and talk with others?
— How can we transform our anger, sadness, or concern into positive action?
— We look forward to seeing you there! In the meantime, we wish you Peace!
— Zoom Room Access: https://zoom.us/j/6091308836
One tap mobile
+19292056099,,6091308836# US (New York)
+16699006833,,6091308836# US (San Jose)
Dial by your location
+1 929 205 6099 US (New York)
+1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
Meeting ID: 609 130 8836

Wednesday, January 27, 2021, 16:00 CET
Parliamentarians, peace and disarmament in cyber-space.

UNFOLD ZERO has been actively promoting Securing our Common Future, the Disarmament Agenda released by the UN Secretary-General in 2018. This includes cooperation with Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament to engage parliamentarians in support action at national, regional and international levels. On November 5, 2020 the parliamentary handbook Assuring our Common Future was launched. It includes over 80 examples of effective policies and parliamentary actions in all disarmament areas.
— On January 27, 2021 the first of a series of follow-up webinars going into more depth on specific areas covered in the handbook. The webinars are open to legislators, governments, experts and civil society representatives working with legislators to advance disarmament.
— Speakers for the first webinar, The role of parliamentarians to advance disarmament in cyber-space, include Saber Chowdhury MP, Honorary President of the InterParliamentary Union, Co-President of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament; Tilman Rodenhauser, Legal Adviser, International Committee of the Red Cross; Anne-Marie Buzatu, Chief Operations Officer, ICT4Peace Foundation and Arthur Duforest, Research Assistant, Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament.
Click here for more information.
Click here to register.

Wednesday, January 27, 4 p.m. EST
Webinar “Biden and China: Challenges & Opportunities?”

The Committee for a Sane U.S.-China Policy will be formally launched on January 27 with the release of its signature statement, “Averting a New Cold War Between the United States and China,” and a webinar on the challenges and opportunities in U.S.-China relations facing the incoming Biden administration.
— This webinar will explore the current tensions between the U.S. and China, likely Biden Administration responses, and steps that can be taken for the mutual benefit of both nations.
— Speakers Michael Klare, Rachel Odell and Zhiquin Zhu.
— Register at: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_1Fyq2BB6Tg2QvqMHkImINg

Wednesday, January 27th at 2:30 pm EST
Search for Common Ground

Join us for a discussion with Shamil Idriss and Cynthia Miller-Idriss, two world-renowned experts who will discuss the origins of this wave of extremist violence, how peacebuilding can heal the United States, and suggest practical steps for each of us to take in building a country where we can live in community—separated by our differences but grounded in justice, equality, and respect. . .. As the Biden-Harris Administration starts to work, we have an opportunity to take action to reduce violence and repair America’s social fabric. Join the conversation about a path forward for America on Wednesday,
CLICK HERE FOR WEBINAR REGISTRATION

Thursday, Jan. 28th from 2:30pm to 5pm EST
The Critical Role of Communication in Building Cultures of Peace

sponsored by the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY
— Welcome: Margo LaZaro, President & Chair of the NGOCSD-NY & Co-Founder/CSO of the SDGIAs
— Keynote Reflections:
Narinder Kakar, Permanent Observer of the University for Peace to the United Nations;
Satya S. Tripathi, UN Assistant Secretary-General and Head of the UN Environment, NYO;
Alyn Ware, Global Coordinator of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation;
Yasmeen Ally, Communications Specialist with Religions for Peace;
Mandy Sanghera, International Human Right Activist & Award Winning Philanthropist
— Cultures of Peace – Plans of Action:
Monique Cuillerier, Coordinator, of the Women, Peace and Security Network – Canada;
Neil Ghosh, President and CEO of SOS Children’s Villages USA;
Mary Muia, Soroptimist International UN Rep, UNEA in Nairobi, Kenya;
Dennis Wong, Co-Founder of the Rotary Action Group for Peace;
Steven Aiello, Founder and Director of Debate for Peace, Israel;
Jeffery Huffines, Senior Advisor of the Coalition for the UN We Need and Together First
— Interactive Exchange
Webinar Registration

Saturday January 30, 14:00-17:00 GMT
Virtual World Assembly of Inhabitants

(Intérpretes: En/Es/Fr/Pt/It)
— Balance de la movilización global Cero Desalojos para Coronavirus
— Acuerdos: construir la alternativa basada en los derechos humanos y ambientales y la redistribución equitativa de los recursos
— Definir la Agenda Solidaria de lxs Habitantxs 2021, la convergencia de las re-existencias en tiempos de pandemia
— Coordinación política: Cesare Ottolini, coordinador global AIH, Italia
— Aportaciones
Medha Patkar, Fundadora Narmada Bachao Andolan y National Alliance of People’s Movements, India (por confirmar)
Richard Wolff, Economista Marxista y Profesor emérito Universidad de Massachusetts Amherst, EEUU
Raquel Rolnik, Profesora USP, ex Relatora ONU sobre el derecho a la vivienda, Brasil
Faeza Meyer, Activista Justicia por el Agua, African Water Commons Collective, Sudáfrica
Balakrishnan Rajagopal, Relator ONU sobre el derecho a la vivienda, EE.UU. (por confirmar)
Click here to register
— Info y contacto: vwai2020@habitants.org

Jan 30, 2021 16:30 in Eastern Time (US and Canada)
No War on Iran

Youth Against Empire will sponsor this webinar called, “No War on Iran.” US has been trying in instigate a War with Iran. Within the past year, the US has been seen to be behind the assassinations of leading scientific and military officials of Iran. The US has Iran surrounded with military bases and Navy ships and has imposed harsh sanction on Iran including sanctioning that deny Iran medical resources during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Register here

Sunday, Jan. 31, 2:00 – 4:00 PM EST (Toronto Time)
Global Town Hall

Peace Magazine and Project Save the World Invite You to Our Next Monthly Global Town Hall
— On the last Sunday of every month, we hold an open meeting on Zoom for activists worldwide who are addressing issues of militarism (especially nuclear weapons), global warming, famine, pandemics, radioactive contamination, and cyber risks. We talk for two hours with our video cameras on (not just audio, please), edit the recording, and put it on YouTube, Facebook, and our website: https://tosavetheworld.ca and then we publicize it widely.
Zoom Link
Facebook Event Page
Visit Our Website
Visit Our YouTube Channel

31 January 2021
Closing date for applications for the Youth Solidarity Fund of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations.

The Youth Solidarity Fund (YSF) supports youth-led organizations that foster peaceful and inclusive societies. Seed funding is given to projects, for and by young people, that demonstrate innovative and effective approaches to intercultural or interfaith dialogue. UNAOC additionally offers capacity-building support to help youth-led organizations strengthen the implementation of their projects.
— Application guidelines can be found here. Please read the guidelines carefully before applying.
Please check the FAQs as they can provide more clarity too.

World Social Forum 2021

FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION

A press release from the World Social Forum

From January 23 to 31, the World Social Forum will celebrate its 20th anniversary online: already nearly 5,000 people and 700 organizations have registered and thousands more are expected.

The world civil society will meet at the World Social Forum (WSF) from January 23 to 31 2021, hoping to provide answers to the urgent challenges imposed by the current global situation. It will thus celebrate its 20th anniversary with a virtual edition against the backdrop of the pandemic.


Since its creation in January 2001 in Porto Alegre, Brazil, by passing through India, Pakistan, Senegal, Kenya, Tunisia, Canada and many others, the World Social Forum has been the largest convergence process of global civil society organizations, mobilizing hundreds of thousands of people throughout its history. For this edition, nearly 5,000 people and 700 organizations from all horizons have already registered and will take part in the hundreds of activities proposed by the participants themselves. It is expected that thousands more people will join the activities that will take place during the 9 days of the WSF, to reaffirm that another world is possible, necessary and urgent.

(Article continued in right column)

Question for this article:

World Social Forums, Advancing the Global Movement for a Culture of Peace?

(Article continued from left column)

A rich program planned for the virtual stage of the WSF:

On January 23rd, there will be a great virtual march for democracy, human dignity and for our future on the planet! Broadcasting of videos from organizations, testimonies of activists from all over the world and a Global Opening Panel with important social and political activists from the five continents, including : Aminata Dramane Traoré, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Leila Khaled, Ashish Kothari, Miriam Miranda and Yanis Varoufakis.

From January 24 to 29, major conferences will be held in each of the nine thematic areas of the virtual WSF: Peace and War, Economic Justice, Education, Communication and Culture, Society and Diversity, Indigenous and Ancestral Peoples, Social Justice and Democracy, Climate, Ecology and Environment. Look at the different activities here.

On January 30th, the Convergence Assemblies will prepare the Agora of the Futures held on January 31st, a pivotal moment where social movements and organizations from around the world will be able to share their initiatives and build a calendar of actions to be implemented until the next edition of the WSF (click here to see the general program of the WSF

Through the email below, the WSF Facilitating Group remains at the disposal of the media around the world for any questions or clarifications.

Email: forumvirtual@wsf2021.net
Website: wsf2021.net

Information (Whatsapp messages): Carminda Mac Lorin (+1 514 381 7090) and Carlos Tiburcio (+55 11 97 666 0176)

(Thank you to Azril Bacal for sending this to CPNN)

Israel to ban human rights groups from school visits

. . HUMAN RIGHTS . .

An article from the Middle East Monitor

Israel’s education minister is banning groups that call the country an “apartheid state” from making schools visits to present information to students, CBS News has reported. Yoav Galant tweeted yesterday that he had instructed the ministry’s director general to “prevent the entry of organisations calling Israel ‘an apartheid state’ or demeaning Israeli soldiers from lecturing at schools.”

The move follows publication of a report last week  by the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem. The organisation branded Israel an “apartheid” state that “promotes and perpetuates Jewish supremacy between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River.”

Echoing the UN’s 2017  report which concluded that Israel was practising apartheid, B’Tselem dismissed the popular misconception that it is a democracy within the Green (1949 Armistice) Line. It argued that after more than half a century of occupation, the state should be treated as a single entity guided by the core racist organising principle of “advancing and perpetuating the supremacy of one group – Jews – over another – Palestinians.”

(Article continued in the column on the right)

Question related to this article:
 
Free flow of information, How is it important for a culture of peace?

Presenting the Palestinian side of the Middle East, Is it important for a culture of peace?

Israel/Palestine, is the situation like South Africa?

(Article continued from the column on the left)

B’Tselem said that it will not be deterred by the minister’s announcement. Director-General Hagai El-Ad spoke at a school in Haifa earlier today.

“For many years we’ve exposed our students to a broad variety of opinions from across Israel’s political spectrum,” said the Hebrew Reali School. “We respect the students’ right to express their opinion and are proud of their involvement in issues at the heart of Israeli society. We hold respectful dialogues and intend to continue this tradition.”

Established in 1989 during the first intifada, B’Tselem  documents human rights abuses in the occupied West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza Strip. “B’Tselem is determined to keep with its mission of documenting reality, analysing it, and making our findings known to the Israeli public and worldwide,” it insisted.

Cooperation and Chocolate: The Story of One Colombian Community’s Quest for Peace

. . SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT . .

An article by Agostino Petroni in Yes Magazine

A community in Colombia is ditching traditional capitalist models in order to build a collective future.


Volunteers of the nonprofit organization Operazione Colomba accompanying some members of the Peace Community to Mulatos village.

When it’s time for harvest, Germán Graciano Posso, a 38-year-old Colombian farmer, leaves his village, La Florencita, with a group of co-workers and heads into the hills where the cacao trees grow surrounded by a lush rainforest. Cacao pods the size of giant lemons hang off the trees’ branches: They come in various colors—green, red, and purple—but tend to turn yellow when they ripen. Posso harvests the fruits by hand, cracks them open with a machete, and collects the grape-sized seeds, which are covered in a white, squishy casing. Then he places the seeds in a wooden box where the casing undergoes a process of fermentation. Finally, Posso spreads out the seeds on a flat surface to dry in the sun. After eight days of drying, they will be ready to become chocolate.

This might seem a common agronomic practice, no different from the one conducted by other cacao growers worldwide, yet it carries a greater significance in this northwestern corner of Colombia.

Posso belongs to the Comunidad de Paz de San José de Apartadó, a conglomerate of villages scattered in Urabá of Antioquia, one of Colombia’s deadliest areas. For more than five decades, from 1964 to 2016, a bloody internal war between the Colombian army, right-wing paramilitary groups, and FARC (the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) killed more than 200,000 people. In this war dictated by drug-traffickers’ interests (both FARC and right-wing paramilitary groups financed their fight by growing coca and trafficking cocaine), farmers were among those who paid the highest toll. Over the past half-century, the United Nations estimates, more than 7 million Colombians—in a country of 49 million—were displaced by the war.

However, resisting the relocation trend, in 1997 the San José de Aparadó farmers declared themselves a peaceful community, neutral to the conflict, and chose to stay in their territory. Their decision carried violent consequences for the community: threats, sexual assault, kidnappings, torture, forced disappearances, assassinations, and massacres. Posso himself suffered the killing of 13 family members, and in 2017, he said, he survived a murder attempt.

Two decades after its declaration of neutrality, the community still carries on its peace crusade. Despite many difficulties, they are hanging on to their collective work thanks to the precious cacao cultivation.

“This is a life project,” Posso says. “We’re not doing this only for ourselves, but also for the new generation.”

The Risks of Existence

In the ’70s, cacao production expanded around San José de Apartadó, adding to the corn and beans that were cultivated for subsistence there, and quickly became the area’s principal cash crop. In 1985, a group of farmers, supported by the leftist party Unión Patriótica, founded Balsamar Cooperative, seeking better terms for the sale of their product. They built facilities and bought trucks, paying higher prices for the cacao from the area because they could cut out intermediaries and sell the cacao directly to Luker, a Colombian chocolate company. The farmers of San José, seeing the profit, started planting more cacao trees.

The land on which the cacao trees grew didn’t just interest farmers but also paramilitary groups, the FARC, drug-traffickers, landowners, and the army. The fertile soil was great for illicit coca cultivations, and proximity to Panama made it a natural smuggling corridor to North America. In the early ’90s, the various groups started taking hold of the area and threatened social groups such as the Balsamar Cooperative.

In 1996, all of the local leaders of the Balsamar Cooperative and other social groups were either assassinated or fled for their lives. Just being in the territory was a danger: If an armed force set up a base camp close by, the opponents would often accuse the farmer who happened to live there of supporting the other group and murder them. A large proportion of the 7,000 residents of San José de Apartadó fled, which quickly reduced the community to 500. 

On March 23, 1997, Brígida Gonzáles, 69, along with the others who decided to stay, founded the Comunidad de Paz de San José de Apartadó. This “Peace Community” declared itself neutral in the conflict, pledging not to get involved in any way—from acting as informants to cultivating illicit crops—and asked to be left in peace. Anybody who was willing to comply with those rules was allowed to be part of the community.

(Article continued in right column)

Question for this article:

What is the relation between movements for food sovereignty and the global movement for a culture of peace?

What is happening in Colombia, Is peace possible?

(Article continued from left column)

“We had already suffered more than 300 deaths, forced disappearances, and displacements,” says Gonzáles, who today is one of the community leaders. Like the rest of her community, her personal losses are many: She lost 17 relatives to the war, including two sons and three siblings, some of whom were militarized by the FARC.

The new neutrality status did not last long. A week after the declaration, members of the community were forced out by the conflict. The cacao trees were abandoned, and the forest took them back.

But San José farmers had been subsisting on that agriculture and their cacao sales: Staying away from the fields meant economic ruin. After a few years of abandonment, the community decided to go back to their land slowly.

Tending to the fields alone was too dangerous because a disappearance could easily go unnoticed, so they organized daily trips to the Peace Community in groups of 50 or 100 to take care of the cacao trees and harvest their fruits. That was the beginning of the peaceful communal effort to regain their territory. What started as protection mechanisms soon became part of a broader philosophy of life.

Building Peace Together

Gwen Burnyeat, a political anthropologist at the University of Oxford, in England, who has studied the Peace Community, says that the concept of community is a reaffirmation of how they live, work, survive, and build peace together.

“You have a really interesting solidarity economics model in which you have individual economics interacting with a kind of collective economics,” says Burnyeat, who published a book in 2018 called Chocolate, Politics and Peace-building  and produced  Chocolate of Peace, a documentary about the role of cacao in the Peace Community. Members of the Peace Community have some individual land, but most of the 150 hectares of cacao trees grow in collectively owned plots. Members gather in small groups to tend the different plots, and every Thursday they do any work the community might need, from repairing a roof to planting more cacao trees. All of the produce from the community-owned crops goes into a collective pot, and then the community decides together how to distribute the funds.

“To them, this is actually a very profound act of transcending traditional capitalist society models and building something together,” Burnyeat says.

The Peace Community is known internationally thanks to the support of nonprofit organizations such as Peace Brigades International and Operazione Colomba. And because of the outside support, the community was able to enter the Fair Trade network and sell their cacao abroad for higher prices. According to Posso, the community sells about 50 tonnes of organic cacao a year to Lush, a British cosmetic company that makes soaps and other products with their cocoa.

But according to Burnyeat, the visibility brought by the nonprofits is an advantage that few other communities have, and she believes it provides a protection mechanism that is unsustainable in the long term. Plus it’s a double-edged sword: The community openly denounces the crimes against humanity on their official website, but this visibility also increases the risk of reprisals, like in 2005, when eight community members, three of them children, were slaughtered  by a group of paramilitary and army soldiers. Since then, the community has ended any interaction with the Colombian government.

Fruits of Hope

In 2016, FARC, the revolutionary paramilitary group that had carried out the bloody war against the state for decades, signed a long-awaited peace accord with the government of former President Juan Manuel Santos. The agreement deeply polarized the country but marked a historic moment for Colombia.

However, four years later, the peace is shaky, failing those it pledged to protect: According to a 2019 report of Colombia’s Institute of Studies for Peace and Development, 700 community leaders have been murdered since 2016.

The Peace Community, in addition to suffering this new wave of violence, is also under the threat of losing their communal land from a state project of agrarian reform, according to Germán Romero, a lawyer with dhColombia, a nonprofit organization in charge of representing the community in court to seek justice for the violence they have experienced.

“We’re trying to keep the integrity of the territory,” Romero says. He says the community has survived physical extermination but might not survive the state’s project of redistribution of land. Local politicians and entrepreneurs who are against the community accuse them of having stolen the lands they cultivate, a claim Romero dismisses.

Losing the land that gives them the fruits of hope might mean the community’s end. But by continuing to harvest cacao, the community is stating, season after season, their right to live in the place they call home.

“The world is tired of war,” says Gonzáles, the community’s founder. “Why don’t they leave us in peace?”

(Thank you to Alicia Cabezudo and Azril Bacal for sending this to CPNN)

Who to Believe about Venezuela’s Election: Firsthand observation or PBS Newshour?

. .DEMOCRATIC PARTICIPATION . .


An article by Rick Sterling in Transcend.org

In early December I traveled to Venezuela to be an election observer at their national assembly election. I was part of a group of eight persons from Canada and US organized by CodePink. There were about two hundred international observers in total, including the  Latin American Council of Electoral Experts.  I have previously been an official election observer in Honduras and was an unofficial observer at the 2015 Venezuela national assembly election.


Photo: Rick Sterling

Meeting Opposition Leaders

Before the election, our small group met eight leaders of the Democratic Alliance. This is the major opposition coalition. Pedro Jose Rojas of Accion Democratica said the US sanctions are not doing what is claimed; they are hurting average citizens. Bruno Gallo of Avanca Progressista said Venezuela needs negotiation not confrontation. Juan Carlos Alvarado of the Christian Democratic Party said Venezuelans have been “victims of politics” and that dialogue and flexibility are needed. Several leaders spoke about the importance of the national assembly and the road to change is through voting not violence. Several leaders expressed the wish for better relations with the US; another one said Venezuelan sovereignty needs to be respected.  The common request was to end US sanctions and interference in Venezuelan politics.

We visited the factory where voting machines were assembled, tested and certified. The staff was openly proud of their work. In March this year, nearly all the pre-existing voting computers were destroyed in a massive fire at the main election warehouse. There were calls to delay the December election. But in six months, forty thousand new computers were ordered, built, assembled, tested and certified for the December election.

The Election Process

On election day, Sunday December 6, we visited many different elections sites. Typically, the election voting takes place at a school, with five or ten classrooms designated as “mesas”.  Each voter goes to his or her designated classroom / “mesa”.

The voting process was quick and efficient, with bio-safety sanitation at each step. The first step is to show your identity card and prove your identity with fingerprint recognition. Step 2 was to make your voting choices at the touchscreen computer and receive a paper receipt. Step 3 is to verify the receipt matches your voting choice and deposit the receipt in a ballot box. The fourth and final step is to sign and put your fingerprint on the voting registry.  The entire voting process took about 3 minutes.

At the end of the voting day, we observed the process of tabulating the votes. At each “mesa”, with observers from other parties present,  the paper receipts were recorded one by one. At the end, the results were compared to the digital count.  Voting results were then transmitted to the headquarters for overall tabulation.

Election results were announced by the Council for National Election (CNE) which manages the entire process.  CNE leaders are not permitted to be members of any party and the CNE leadership was recently changed at the request of the opposition.  In our discussion with leading opposition members, they complained about incumbent party advantages but acknowledged the election process is free, fair and honest.

PBS Newshour Special

With this firsthand experience, on December 29 I watched a PBS Newshour segment   about the Venezuela election and overall situation.   PBS reporter Marcia Biggs said, “Maduro’s party essentially ran unopposed in this month’s election.”   As noted above, this is untrue.

In fact, there were 107 parties and over 14,000 individuals competing in the December 6 election for 277 national assembly seats. While 8 parties were in alliance with the governing United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), there were over 90 opposition parties. The strongest opposition coalition was the Democratic Alliance comprising 7 opposition parties.  The Democratic Alliance won 1.1 million votes or 18% of the vote. The LEFT opposition to the PSUV, under the banner of the Communist Party of Venezuela, received 168 thousand votes.

Reporter Marcia Biggs claimed that “politics permeates everything in Venezuela and can determine whether you support Maduro and eat or go hungry.” This claim is based on a campaign statement by PSUV Vice President Diosdado Cabello encouraging people to vote. He jokingly said that women are in the forefront and can say to their family, “No vote, no food.” Video of him making the statement is here.  This statement has been distorted out of all meaning and context.

The PBS story showed a fistfight in the national assembly, implying that it was the Venezuelan government.  But, as reported in the “Juan Guaidó surreal regime change reality show”,  the fight was between competing factions of the Venezuelan opposition.

(continued in right column)

Question for this article:

What is really happening in Venezuela?

(continued from left column)
 
When they showed Juan Guaidó climbing over a fence, that was a publicity stunt to distract from the important news that Luis Parra was elected Speaker of the national assembly one year ago.  That was embarrassing because Guaidó’s claim to be “interim president” was based on his being Speaker.

Election turnout was lower than usual at 31% but one needs to account for the election taking place despite covid19 with no mail-in voting. Also, millions of registered voters have had to leave the country due to economic hardship. Also, transportation is difficult due to gasoline scarcity. This was a national assembly election, equivalent to a US mid-term election, which gets lower turnout. Note that 95% of voting eligible Venezuelans are registered voters compared to just 67%  in the USA.  Thus a turnout of 50% registered voters in the US equates to 33% of eligible voters.

US Meddling in Venezuela

The star of the 7-minute PBS story is Roberto Patino, the Venezuelan director of a food distribution charity. The report neglects to mention that Patino is associated with a major US foreign policy institution. He is a Millennium Leadership fellow and “expert”  at the neoliberal Atlantic Council where the “regime change” goals against Venezuela are  clear.  His food charity “Alimenta la Solidaridad” is allied with the “ Rescue Venezuela ” funded by the US with the apparent goal of undermining the Venezuelan government and promoting “interim president Juan Guaidó”.

Roberto Patino says the Venezuelan government is “very paranoid and they see conspiracies all over.” Paranoia is a mental condition where there is fear of imaginary threats.  But US threats and aggression against Venezuela are not imaginary; they are very real:

In 2002 the US supported the kidnapping and coup against the popular and elected President Hugo Chavez. The years have gone by but US hostility persists.

* In August 2018 there was a drone assassination attempt  on the Venezuelan President.

* In January 2019 the US declared that it would not recognize the elected President Maduro and instead recognized Juan Guaidó as “interim president”. His background is described in the article “The Making of Juan Guaidó: How the US regime change laboratory created Venezuela’s coup leader

* In February 2019 President Trump threatened military intervention  against Venezuela.

* In March 2019, there was massive power blackout caused by sabotage of the electrical grid, with probable US involvement.

* In May 2020, two former US Special Forces soldiers and other mercenaries were arrested in a failed attempt  to overthrow President Maduro.

* In June 2020, the US Navy warship Nitze  began provocative “freedom of navigation” patrols along the Venezuelan coast.

* In August 2020, the US seized four ships  carrying much needed gasoline to Venezuela.

* In September 2020, in a attempt to undermine the Venezuelan election, the US imposed sanctions  on political leaders who planned to participate.

* The US 2021 stimulus bill includes $33Million  for “democracy programs for Venezuela”.

Based on the past twenty years, Venezuela’s government has good reason to be on guard against US threats, meddling and intervention. The PBS program ignores this history.

Another hero of the show is the exiled politician Leopoldo Lopez. He was imprisoned in 2014 for instigating street violence known as “guarimbas”  which led to the deaths of 43 people.

Like Patino, Lopez  is from the Venezuelan elite, studied in the US and has major public relations  support in the US. Like Guaidó, Leopoldo Lopez is more popular in Washington than his home country.

Will the US respect Venezuelan sovereignty?

If the PBS Newshour reporters had not been so biased, they would have interviewed members of the moderate opposition in Venezuela. Viewers could have heard Democratic Alliance leaders  explain why they participated in the election, why they are critical of US economic sanctions and US interference in their domestic affairs. That would have been educational for viewers.

On January 5, the newly elected national assembly will commence in Venezuela.  The fig leaf pretense of Juan Guaidó as “interim president” of Venezuela will be removed because he is no longer in the national assembly.  In fact, he was removed as speaker of the national assembly one year ago.

But viewers of the PBS special did not learn this. Instead, they received a biased report ignoring the moderate opposition and promoting a few US supported elites.  The report ignores or denigrates the efforts of millions of Venezuelans who carried out and participated in an election which compares favorably with the election process in the US.  You would never know it from PBS, and you might not believe it, unless you saw it with your own eyes.

Nomination of Julian Assange, Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize

FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION

Press release at Transcend.org

Ms. Mairead Maguire, Nobel Peace Laureate, has today nominated Julian Assange, Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize.


WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange greets supporters from a balcony of the Ecuadorian embassy in London. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein, File)

In her nomination letter to Nobel Committee in Oslo, Ms. Maguire wrote:

“My reasons for nominating them together are simple.   Individually each has given countless examples of courage exposing governments’ illegal actions that caused millions of deaths – putting their own freedom and lives on the line.

“Collectively, their lives of self-sacrifice and selflessness constitute remarkable demonstrations of the magnificence of the human spirit.   They are indeed breathtaking testimonies to the goodness inherent in the human heart.

“The Nobel Committee could protect and help save the lives of these three Champions of Peace by awarding them the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize.  By doing so the Committee would honour the will of Nobel, in acknowledging true heroes of Peace.   The Nobel Committee would also give great hope to publishers, journalists, writers, and many who face repression and persecution by their governments as they struggle to be writers of truth and history of humanity.”

*******************

4th January, 2021

The Norwegian Nobel Committee
Henrik Ibsen’s gate 51
O255 Oslo, Norway

Subject:  Nomination of Julian Assange, Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize

Dear Members of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, I hope this finds you well.
I am herein nominating these three individuals, as a group, for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize.

All three have been individually nominated in previous years for the Peace Prize, but none received it to date.   My reasons for nominating them together are simple.

Individually, each has given countless examples of courage exposing governments’ illegal actions that caused millions of deaths—putting their own freedoms and lives on the line.

Collectively, their lives of self-sacrifice and selflessness constitute remarkable demonstrations of the magnificence of the human spirit. They are indeed breathtaking testimonies to the goodness inherent in the human heart.

Today around the world, when we listen or read about violence, militarism, poverty, war, pandemics, climate change, and particularly the suffering of millions of little children hungry in a rich world, it is hard not to feel despair and wonder… ‘where is the hope?’  However, the hope lies in the lives of ordinary people doing extraordinary things to serve and help others even sometimes at the cost of their own lives.

(Article continued in the column on the right)

Question related to this article:
 
Julian Assange, Is he a hero for the culture of peace?

Free flow of information, How is it important for a culture of peace?

(Article continued from the column on the left)

Our hope lies in lives like those of Chelsea, Ed and Julian, their altruism helping restore our faith in ourselves and in our brothers and sisters everywhere.  We allow ourselves to be inspired by their courage and example as they motivate us to act.   If they are capable of such great acts of love, maybe we too can do something for others – at least we can try to keep the Golden Rule, ‘do unto others as you would have them do to you’ (which all religions preach). We each can try to do no harm, and try to do what is right.

Chelsea Manning, as an American soldier based in Iraq, could not go along with the murder of Iraqi civilians.  Julian Assange, as a publisher, had to do his duty and disclose facts of the Iraqi and Afghan wars to the public. Edward Snowden, working in U.S. intelligence, could not remain silent knowing that his government was carrying out illegal surveillance of US citizens and world governments.

They could have remained silent but chose the hard road to tell the truth.

Now they are being punished cruelly and vindictively by those who broke international laws, the very people who should be held responsible for the deaths of children and civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Syria, Yemen

Currently Assange is in Belmarsh Prison, UK, facing extradition charges to USA, as the British government cooperates with the American Grand Jury to condemn him (an Australian citizen and publisher) to cruel, degrading and inhuman treatment, which could even lead to the death penalty.

Even more insidious, with a few honourable exceptions, the Main Stream Media–if not silent at the unjust torture of Assange by the UK and US governments–collude in the abuse of Assange, a fellow publisher. If Assange is extradited to USA to stand trial and imprisoned for truth telling, thereafter no reporter, newspaper or publisher in the world will be safe from the same treatment by the USA and other repressive governments opposed to public accountability and scrutiny.

Snowden is seeking asylum in Moscow (Russia have just granted him citizenship to help protect his life) and is unable to return to his home in the USA lest he be arrested and confined to an American prison for life.

Manning is in an American prison, having been re-arrested and held because she courageously refuses to give testimony against Assange.

All of these three Champions of Peace followed their consciences, did their duty with love. I am sure that they were afraid, but they endured their Dark Nights of the Soul, they each did something beautiful and magnificent in service of others.  We must all be grateful for their uplifting spirits.

The Nobel Committee could protect and help save the lives of these three champions of peace by awarding them the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize. By doing so you would honour the will of Nobel, in acknowledging true heroes of Peace.  The Nobel committee would also give great hope to publishers, journalists, writers, and many who face repression and persecution by their governments as they struggle to be the writers of truth and history of humanity. Thank you.

Peace,

Mairead Maguire

Past Virtual Events December 20-31

FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION

Here are events and application deadlines after December 19 that were previously listed on the CPNN page for upcoming virtual events. Unless otherwise noted the events are in English.

Sunday 20 December, 23:00 UTC+01

The Venezuelan Election, a blow to US Imperialism.
Organised by the United National Antiwar Coalition et Bahman Azad
— The United Socialist Party of Venezuela, the party of Nicolas Maduro won a stunning victory in the recent election for the National Assembly. However, the US has sought to undercut this victory and to deny the will of the Venezuelan people. This webinar will give us the chance to hear voices of people who were there as election observers and independent journalists and saw a different picture than the one projected by the US government. Their talks will be followed by questions and answers. Please join us and share the information about this webinar.
— Speakers:
— Margaret Flower, Popular Resistance
— Vijay Prashad, Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research
— Bahman Azad, U.S. Peace Council
— Zoe PC, Peoples Dispatch
Register here
Click here to watch replay on youtube

24 December 2020, 4:00PM Eastern Daylight Time (New York)

Deadline to submit application for Online Youth Consultation on Preventing Violent Extremism through Sport
— Invitation from the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) within the framework of the UN Global Programme on Security of Major Sporting Events, and Promotion of Sport and its Values as a Tool to Prevent Violent Extremism, implemented by the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT) in partnership with UNAOC, United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI) and the International Centre for Sport and Security (ICSS).
— The consultation aims to gather the input and guidance of young people in developing various outputs such as an awareness campaign to be launched concurrently with global sporting events next year and with the involvement of professional athletes; a policy guide; a handbook; and an app. These products will aim to advance the power of sport and its social values as a tool to prevent violent extremism, and to strengthen the engagement and cooperation of youth and Member States in using sport to promote sustainable peace and development.
— Participants must be :
* between 15 and 19 years old
* Wish to contribute to the advancement of sport in promoting social inclusion, ensuring sustainable peace and preventing radicalization and violent extremism
* Have experience with policy guides, innovative programmes, knowledge sharing tools and/or awareness raising/communication campaigns
— Further details and instructions on how to apply are available at: https://apply.unaoc.org/youth-sport

Sunday, December 27. 2:00-4:00 PM Eastern Standard Time (US/Canada)

Global Town Hall
On the last Sunday of every month, Project Save the World hosts a one-hour conversation via Zoom videoconference about our various projects working to prevent one or more of these threats: war and weapons / global warming / famine / pandemics / radioactive contamination / cyberattacks.
— Video conference URL: https://zoom.us/j/9108970203

December 29

Deadline for nominations for the Peace and Climate action European Youth (PACEY) Plus Award 2021.
— Please make your nomination in one of the two categories:
1. European youth project: A project based in Europe or run by youth from Europe;
2. Beyond Europe youth project: A project based outside Europe or a Global youth project.
— Self-nominations are permitted.
— The Award is organised jointly by the Basel Peace Office and the Präsidialdepartement des Kantons Basel-Stadt, Kantons- und Stadtentwicklung (Office of Cantonal and Urban Development, Department of Presidential Affairs, Canton of Basel-Stadt, Switzerland).
— Questions to info@baselpeaceoffice.org.
— For more information please visit www.baselpeaceoffice.org
Nomination form

Mexico: 100 Actions for Peace; Wilfrido Lázaro

.FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION

An article from La Voz de Michoacán

The National Council of Civil Organizations for the Culture of Peace CPAZ A.C. in coordination with the International Committee of the Banner of Peace and the Center for Studies for Peace, Security and Development CECAPAZ A.C. has started a challenge across the country.


“The construction of Peace is everyone’s task, therefore, through this campaign we invite society, civil organizations, as well as anyone who wants to join, to carry out 100 actions for Peace, one every day.” expressed Wilfrido Lázaro, CPAZ National Coordinator.

(Click here for the original article in Spanish.)

Questions related to this article:

Is there progress towards a culture of peace in Mexico?

Wilfrido Lázaro, member of the Michoacan Council for the Construction of Peace and Reconciliation, explained that this campaign aims for individuals to promise to carry out for each of 100 days, a conscious action that promotes the construction of Peace, with your partner, your family, or in favor of your community and country.

“An action leads to a habit, a habit to a custom and a custom to a culture, and that is what we seek through these hundred actions, to generate a Culture of Peace, in favor of Morelia, Michoacán, Mexico and the world,” according to Lázaro Medina, who is also Coordinator in Michoacán of the International Committee for the Banner of Peace, chaired by the famous television actress Dr. Alicia Rodriguez.

This campaign will take place throughout the country, disseminated through the member organizations of the National Council of Civil Organizations for the Culture of Peace. They have already received a good response from civil associations in the country such as CECAPAZ AC, Mesa de Paz Jalisco, COEMPAZ AC, Youth for Peace Michoacán, Youth for Peace, Positive Peace, Kites that speak for Peace, Vallarta Azteca, Fundación en Movimiento, among others.

Finally, Wilfrido Lázaro invited citizens to spread their actions with the hashtag # 100AXPaz and through this, to motivate and invite more people to join the construction of Peace. “In this way, building Peace is very simple; it is the details with ourselves and with others that truly makes the difference.”

Past Virtual Events December 13 -18

FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION

Here are events and application deadlines after December 12 that were previously listed on the CPNN page for upcoming virtual events. Unless otherwise noted the events are in English.

Thursday – Dec 10, 2020
Sunday, December 13 @1 pm ET (Canada)

Canadian Friends of Peace Now
How Israel Became Its Own Worst Enemy and Its Hope for the Future: A Personal Perspective
with Ami Ayalon and guest host Jim Torczyner
— Admiral (res.) Ami Ayalon is a former director of the Shin Bet (Israel’s security service), commander of the Israeli Navy, government minister and member of Knesset (Labour). He recently co-authored Friendly Fire: How Israel Became its Own Worst Enemy and the Hope for its Future. This is a memoir of Ayalon’s journey towards becoming a strong voice for peace between Israelis and Palestinians and his analysis of the barriers impeding peace. He critiques self-defeating policies that have undermined Israel’s civil society while heaping humiliation upon its Palestinian neighbours. The book discusses what Israel must do to achieve relative peace and security and to sustain itself as a Jewish homeland and liberal democracy.
— Audience questions welcome. You may send advance questions to info@peacenowcanada.org
Register for this event here.

Monday, December 14-15
7:00 pm to 8:30 pm (New York), Monday 14 December
9:00 am to 10:30 am (Japan), Tuesday 15 December

Please join PeaceBoat for a very special online discussion with Ms Michiko Hattori, a survivor of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima
— Organised by Peace Boat and #Youth4Disarmament, a project of the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA).h
— Seventy five years after the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the world still faces the grave threat of the nuclear weapons. As the hibakusha survivors age, there are fewer opportunities to listen to their first-hand stories. We can continue to honour them by celebrating their lives and work and by discussing possible actions we can take together and individually.
— A discussion wil be followed by a youth-led question and answer session.
— RSVP here: https://bit.ly/3qKpm6v

Dec 14-15
Dec. 14 at 8:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Dec. 15 at 10:00 AM KST

Militarization, Killer Robots, and the Korean Peninsula: The Case for Peace
— Join the transnational feminist campaign Korea Peace Now! for this discussion on on Dec. 14 at 8:00pm EST about killer robots in South Korea: what they are, why you should care, and how ending the Korean War can help stop them.
— Featuring:
Ray Acheson, Campaign to Stop Killer Robots
YouKyoung Ko, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom
Youngmi Cho, Korean Women’s Movement for Peace
Moderated by Catherine Killough, Women Cross DMZ
— Simultaneous interpretation in Korean and English will be provided***
Register here

Tuesday, Dec 15, 5:00 PM Pacific Time USA

“How to Avoid a War in Asia”
Join Code Pink, Beyond the Bomb, Women Cross the DMZ and World Beyond War for an amazing panel.
Panelists:
Hyun Lee: National Organizer, Women Cross the DMZ
Jodie Evans: Co-Founder, Code Pink
Molly Hurley: Organizer, Beyond the Bomb
David Swanson: Exec. Director, World Beyond War
Leah Bolger: Board President, World Beyond War
Register here in advance for this meeting
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Wednesday 16 December 2020 from 11:00 AM to 12:15 PM CET

Live Webinar: Accelerating Youth Inclusion in Building Peace
— To honour the 5th anniversary of the Youth, Peace and Security Resolution, the Kingdom of Denmark and the Kofi Annan Foundation are hosting an online panel discussion on how to accelerate change towards the meaningful inclusion of young women and men in shaping peace.
— Our panel of experts will share concrete examples and good practices of how member states, the EU and civil society organisations are contributing to the Youth, Peace and Security agenda and discuss what remains to be done to make youth inclusion a reality.
Register here

Wednesday, December 16th 11:00 am EST. (1600 GMT)

“Jonathan Kuttab’s Booklet Launch” Webinar Registration – We Are All Part of One Another
— “I am launching a book which I hope, with your help can address the current impasse, and perhaps change the conversation around Israel / Palestine. Many activists are frustrated, despondent, and floundering with no clear vision or direction. We need some fresh out-of-the-box thinking. This is true for Palestinians, Israelis, and our friends in the international community. I’ve asked Nonviolence International, a group I co-founded and value deeply, to lead the effort to get this book into the hands of people across the political spectrum and across the world.
— To learn more about the text and see what people are saying, please visit: Beyond The Two-State Solution.
— Please RSVP here to join the launch event.

December 16-18

Workshop on contributions of smart city projects to climate resilience
— Co-organizers: Hiroshima University (Network for Education and Research on Peace and Sustainability), Global Carbon Project-Tsukuba International Office, Future Earth, Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change
Research (APN)
— This 3-day workshop is consisted of sessions related to three main activities:
1. The first day is allocated to presentations by authors who have submitted their works to be considered for publication in a special issue of Environment and Planning B. Details about the special issue are available at: https://journals.sagepub.com/page/epb/collections/special-issues 2.
On days 2 and 3 the participants will take part in interactive sessions focused on investigating the actual and potential contributions of smart cities to climate resilience.. . .
3. On day 3 a parallel session will be organized to discuss contributions of smart cities to urban climate change mitigation. . .
— Registration: Please register here to receive zoom link prior to the event. https://bit.ly/2HsrTQz