Nieuws Democracy

Nieuws over politieke trainingen en ontwikkelingen in Oost- en Zuidoost Europa, de Kaukasus, Afrika en het Midden Oosten

Tensions and clashes in Turkey during Berkin Elvan’s funeral

In Turkey, tensions soared on 11 and 12 March when tens of thousands of people took to the streets and gathered to mourn the death of Berkin Elvan. He died after being in a coma for nine months. Last June he was hit on the head by a tear-gas canister while going to buy bread during the protests against the prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. He was a symbol for the police brutality that, among others, caused the Gezi-protests of last year to escalate. These protests started as a relatively small environmentalist movement to save Istanbul's central Gezi Park but evolved into a nationwide wave of protests against Erdoğan, who is seen as increasingly authoritarian.

Prime minister Libya ousted by parliament

Libya’s Prime Minster, Ali Zeidan, was ousted by parliament, the General National Congress, after a vote of no confidence on Tuesday 11 March. Zeidan was blamed for letting an oil tanker, laden with rebel sold oil, escape naval forces. Zeidan will be temporarily replaced by Defence Minister Abdallah al-Thinni.

Upcoming elections Serbia

On 30 January Serbia president Tomislav Nikolic called early parliamentary elections for 16 March. According to the president Serbia “shall certainly get a government with more energy and enthusiasm and released from problems that this government has solved.” The coalition government, in which the Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) is the main party, explained its request for early elections by the need to ensure ‘as wide as possible support for accelerated reforms and modernization of Serbia’. However, the fact that SNS is skyrocketing in all polls (above 40%) is considered as crucial factor for SNS to go to the polls and having its leader Aleksandar Vucic as prime minister.

Erdogan warns of a possible ban on social media Facebook and YouTube

Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has given a warning that his government will block social media networks YouTube and Facebook, which feature in the growing corruption scandal. “If necessary” he would ban them, suggesting that “he would not sacrifice the Turkish people” to the two websites. Both platforms were used to spread the leaks of alleged phone calls between Erdoğan and his son in which they discuss how to hide vast sums of money. The Prime Minister dismisses those phone calls as being a fake montage by his rivals, which he deems ‘vile’ and ‘immoral’. After the local elections on 30th of March, he warned, new steps will therefore be taken to tighten the government’s grip over the internet.

Crimean parliament votes to join Russia

The parliament of Ukraine’s southern region, Crimea, has voted unanimously in favor of joining Russia. The vote coincided with an announcement that a referendum on Crimea's status was being brought forward to March 16. The question to be put to voters will be whether their region should enjoy autonomy within Ukraine or join Russia.

Netanyahu says there will be no peace deal without Palestinian recognition of Israel

Israeli Prime Ministers Benjamin Netanyahu said he was prepared to discuss peace with the Palestinians, but offered no concessions. He demanded that the Palestinians would recognize the state of Israel in return. Netanyahu made the statement at the annual meeting of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the US leading Israel-lobby organization.

Early elections in Macedonia

On March 1 it was announced that Macedonia is set to call early parliamentary elections in order to end a political deadlock sparked by the two main ruling coalition members. They cannot agree on a candidate for the upcoming presidential vote. Yesterday all parties have given their consent, therefore parliament is expected to dissolve tomorrow.

Training voor vrouwen en jongeren in Marokko

Afgelopen weekend (28 februari-2 maart) organiseerden wij in samenwerking met de zusterpartij in Marokko de Unified Socialist Party (PSU) een training voor jonge activisten en vrouwen die gelieerd zijn aan de PSU. Zowel jongeren als vrouwen zijn belangrijke doelgroepen voor en binnen de partij en vandaar dat de partner graag een training wilde organiseren waarin allebei de doelgroepen waren vertegenwoordigd.

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