Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 34 n° 316

Posts Tagged ‘violations’

MEPs warn of women’s rights violations, breaches of rule of law and hate speech

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 7 dicembre 2018

EU institutions not being effective in protecting rule of law and European values. MEPs denounce the rise of hate speech Council urged to unblock the Dublin Regulation reform Gender violence and discrimination, breaches of rule of law and hate speech were the main areas where fundamental rights were violated in the EU in 2017, MEPs say.In a non-legislative resolution adopted on Monday with 31 votes to 13 and 1 abstention, the Civil Liberties Committee assesses the situation of fundamental rights in the EU in 2017 and denounces violations of women’s rights, rule of law, freedom of speech, minorities’ rights and migration.The text condemns all forms of violence against women and regrets that only 19 EU countries have ratified the Istanbul Convention on combating gender-based violence, urging the rest of them to ratify it “without delay”. MEPs also call on member states and EU institutions to commit and take further measures to tackle violence and discrimination against women.
They support the demonstrations claiming for women’s sexual and reproductive health rights that took place last year across the EU following the retrogressions in this field, as well as the mediatisation of sexual harassment cases through initiatives such as the #MeToo movement. Nonetheless, the resolution voices concern on the prevalence of these women’s rights violations in the EU, and notes the higher vulnerability of disabled and migrant women.The Civil Liberties Committee strongly condemns the “efforts” in some EU countries to weaken the separation of powers and the independence of the judiciary, and denounce the EU institutions’ “ineffectiveness in putting an end to the serious and persistent breaches” of the Union’s values. Impartial, regular assessment on the evolution of rule of law based on objective criteria in all the member states is necessary, MEPs stress.They warn about the threat that corruption poses for democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights, and calls on member states and EU institutions to accelerate the establishment of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office. MEPs are also concerned about the impact of Brexit on the safeguarding of the freedom of movement and residence for EU citizens living in the UK and UK citizens living in the EU.The text denounces the increasing restrictions to freedom of speech and freedom of assembly in the EU, and highlights the importance of whistleblowing as an element of investigative journalism and press freedom. MEPs express their deep concern over the threats, pressures and risk journalists face in the EU, that have even led them to assassination as in the case of the Maltese journalist Daphne Courana Galizia.
They also underline the need to combat the rising of anti-Semitism and Islamophobia, as well as the persistent discrimination and stigmatisation against LGTBI and intersex people in the EU. MEPs regret that in 2017 “no major improvement” happened concerning integration and fundamental rights of Roma people.The Committee urges the Council to put an end to the current blockage of the Dublin Regulation reform. It also points to violations of migrants and asylum seekers’ rights in some EU countries. MEPs encourage national authorities to support NGOs working in this field and to facilitate the granting of humanitarian visas to those seeking international protection.
Josep-Maria Terricabras (Greens/EFA, ES), rapporteur for the resolution, said: “Although the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights sets out the basic rights that must be respected both by the EU and the member states, we continue to witness breaches and violations of their provisions. The concerns raised in many member states on the issue of the independence of the judiciary, the obstacles and criminalization to the work of the civil society or the backlashes in the field of civil liberties – especially those related with freedom of assembly and freedom of the press – must be urgently addressed”.The resolution will be put to a vote by the full House during the January plenary session, in Strasbourg.

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IT: rights protection vs rights violations?

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 31 marzo 2018

IT systemsIT systems can help trace missing migrant children and combat identity theft. But there are also significant risks to people’s fundamental rights, for instance not being fairly treated within the asylum procedure. So finds the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) in a new report. As authorities increasingly rely on these systems, the report suggests ways to better defend the rights of those affected.
As IT systems are increasingly being used for migration and security, the ‘Under watchful eyes – biometrics, EU IT-systems and fundamental rights’ report explores the impact of these systems. It also sets out how to safeguard people’s fundamental rights:
About 50% of European border and visa officials interviewed by FRA spoke of data entry mistakes in their IT systems. This can result from misspellings, lack of interpretation, or fingerprints being assigned to the wrong person. This shows the need for the EU and its Member States to strengthen quality assurance. They should also ensure people know why data is being collected and how to easily correct or delete inaccurate personal data.
Data may be hacked; oppressive regimes may access data of people seeking refuge; data of children may stigmatise them into adulthood. Such issues call for strong safeguards controlling data access as well as ways of monitoring how data are being used.
IT systems can also be a force for good. Nearly a third of border guards had come across children flagged as missing. This shows how IT systems can help trace missing and trafficked children. They can also provide information about people who arrive without travel documents if they are already in the system. They can thus help ensure that people are not unlawfully refused access. (photo: IT systems)

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CIA renditions: MEPs want member states to bring those responsible to justice

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 10 giugno 2016

washingtonParliament voiced serious concerns on Wednesday at the “apathy shown by member states and EU institutions” about recognising “the multiple fundamental rights violations and torture” that took place in US CIA “rendition” operations on European soil between 2001 and 2006. Its non-binding resolution urges them to investigate these violations and to bring those responsible for or complicit in them to justice. In the resolution, passed by 329 votes to 299, with 49 abstentions, MEPs call on EU member states to “investigate, insuring full transparency, the allegations that there were secret prisons on their territory in which people were held under the CIA programme.” They are concerned that “undue classification of documents” leads to “de facto impunity for perpetrators of human rights violations.” They also call for more fact-finding missions to be organised by the European Parliament in those member states which have been identified as complicit in the CIA’s detention and interrogation programme, such as Lithuania, Poland, Italy and the UK.
Parliament regrets the fact that more than a year after the release of a US Senate study of the renditions programme, no perpetrators have been held to account and the US government has failed to cooperate with EU member states.MEPs also regret that the Guantánamo detention centre has not yet been closed and call on the US authorities to ensure fair trials, prohibit torture, ill-treatment and detention without trial in all circumstances. EU member states should offer asylum to those prisoners who have been officially cleared for release, they add. MEPs ask Commission and Council to report back to Parliament on the findings of investigations and prosecutions conducted in the member states before the end of June 2016.

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Libertà appese a un filo: il caso della Tunisia

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 10 agosto 2015

libertè de la pressedi Rosita Ferrato: “La liberté ! C’est la liberté de la presse et de l’information ! Et c’est la liberté de la parole! Avec le temps, l’information peut subir une pression. Et le droit obtenu peut subir des violations! Aujourd’hui, la liberté de l’information en Tunisie tient à un fil! Depuis 2011, nous avons acquis une liberté mais qui n’est pas garantie! En la protégeant, nous nous protégeons et nous protégeons ce Pays.”
Questo è il messaggio che è stato trasmesso per radio e diffuso dai media cartacei e audiovisivi in Tunisia. È il contenuto della campagna “La libertà di stampa è appesa a un filo”, lanciata dal primo e attiva fino al 15 di agosto, dal Syndicat national des journalistes tunisiens (Snjt) e da Reporter sans Frontières (RSF), un appello alle autorità perché tornino sulla loro decisione di ritirare il progetto di legge relativo al diritto di accesso all’informazione, un progetto di legge che è stato esaminato e dibattuto all’indomani della rivoluzione del gennaio 2011. Secondo la classifica di RSF, la Tunisia è al 126 esimo posto nella classifica mondiale per la libertà di stampa e la ragione di tanta arretratezza è chiara anche dall’evidenziarsi di questa grave falla nel sistema giuridico.
La querelle che l’iniziativa sottolinea, infatti, è legata alle fonti: finora, l’Assemblea dei rappresentanti del popolo si è rifiutata di aggiungere la professione di giornalista come eccezione alla divulgazione di informazioni legate al terrorismo, eccezione prevista dall’articolo 35 del progetto di legge numero 22/2015. Se questo testo venisse promulgato così come è, sostiene giustamente RSF, costituirebbe una grave violazione del segreto delle fonti, una garanzia indispensabile per tutti i giornalisti d’inchiesta e non.
Per il presidente del sindacato dei giornalisti tunisino Néji Bghouri, sentito dal quotidiano locale La Presse, la domanda presentata dal ministro della giustizia al Parlamento per ritirare il progetto di legge relativo al diritto d’accesso all’informazione è «un colpo fatale portato al processo di transizione democratica» e «rappresenta in generale un grande scacco per la libertà dei media e di espressione in generale». Yasmine Kacha, che per RSF si occupa in particolare delle problematiche tunisine, sottolinea che la libertà di stampa è seriamente minacciata non solo dai tentativi del governo di istituire leggi che limitano la libertà di stampa: si registra, infatti, una recrudescenza delle aggressioni fisiche e verbali, risultano sparizioni mai chiarite di reporter (come Sofiene Chourabi e Nadhir Ktari, scomparsi dall’8 settembre 2014), si registrano accuse penali contro i giornalisti per le loro pubblicazioni.
A tutto questo si aggiunge, ora, il ritiro del progetto di legge sull’accesso all’informazione. «In questo contesto – dice la Kacha – la campagna intende sensibilizzare l’opinione pubblica rispetto al pericolo che rappresenta la minaccia della libertà di stampa, che è un’arma capace di molto: persino di evitare un ritorno della dittatura.»
La questione della protezione delle fonti figurava tra le prime nella lista delle raccomandazioni proposte dalle organizzazioni nazionali e internazionali della società civile, rispetto al testo della legge contro il terrorismo e il riciclaggio di denaro votata in assemblea plenaria dal 22 luglio 2015. Le organizzazioni firmatarie di una lettera aperta all’Assemblea hanno domandato l’emendamento dell’articolo 35 del testo di legge, per l’appunto con l’aggiunta di un’eccezione per i professionisti dell’informazione e con la previsione della facoltà, per i giudici, di emettere un’ordinanza per il sollevamento della segretezza delle fonti in circostanze straordinarie.
Queste proposte eviterebbero ai giornalisti di correre il rischio di una condanna a multe e a pene molto pesanti per il solo fatto di avere effettuato un lavoro di investigazione su soggetti coinvolti nella sicurezza nazionale e nelle reti terroristiche. «La protezione dei giornalisti – dice ancora Yasmine Kacha – è fondamentale per far prevalere il diritto di informare e di essere informati. Senza, rischiamo una limitazione pericolosa nel campo della libertà di stampa.»

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Supermarkets selling products from the illegal Israeli settlements in Palestine violate international standards and are linked to human rights violations

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 20 Maggio 2015

amsterdamAmsterdam. Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories constitute a violation of international humanitarian law, and result into serious human rights violations. However, Dutch supermarkets continue to import and sell products from those settlements, including fruits and vegetables. As a result, supermarkets profit from companies that strengthen and expand illegal settlements. In its paper ‘Trading settlement products and the role of Dutch supermarkets in human rights violations’ SOMO concludes that it is time for supermarkets to take responsibility and for the government to adopt binding rules.Both the international community and the Dutch government recognise that the settlements are a violation of international law. Moreover, the settlements are one of the main obstacles to a solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and lead to a series of human rights violations, such as violence against Palestinians by settlers, land expropriation for agricultural production in the settlements, and improper use of water by the settlements at the expense of the Palestinian population. “International trade between the settlements and companies such as supermarkets is one of the driving forces behind the settlements”, says Shawan Jabarin, director of Palestinian human rights organization Al Haq. “To end these human rights violations, it is essential to stop the trade in settlement products”. Earlier this month the umbrella organisation of Dutch supermarkets, CBL, announced that it will start listing the settlement origin on products. This in contrast to the current practice in which products from both the settlements and Israel are labelled ‘made in Israel’. While this will properly inform consumers about the origin of fruits and vegetables from the settlements, SOMO emphasises that correct labelling does nothing to end the human rights violations connected to the import and marketing of settlement products.
On the level of the Dutch government there currently exists a lack of clear legislation and rules concerning the issue. The government expects the supermarkets to take their own responsibility. It refers to existing international standards such as the OECD guidelines which states that companies should prevent becoming linked to human rights violations either as a result of their own practices, via the products they market or the suppliers they work with. However, supermarkets continue to act in contradiction with these guidelines and continue to wait for more guidance from the government.
SOMO argues that buying and selling settlement products is not in line with the OECD guidelines. “Settlements products cannot be seen in isolation from the illegal status of the settlements and the human rights violations as a result of the settlements”, says Anne Schuit, researcher at SOMO. “Supermarkets should be aware of these violations and take steps to prevent or end their involvement in violations”. Wednesday 20 May the Dutch Parliament will have a debate on the situation in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories. SOMO calls on the government to implement mandatory human rights due diligence standards for supermarkets and food companies, obliging them to analyse the actual and potential impact on human rights in their supply chain and to take effective steps to prevent or end their involvement in violations. If not, this vicious circle, which paves the way to serious human rights violations and breaches of international law, will continue to exist.

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