Nonviolent conflict is a way for people to fight for rights, freedom, justice, self-determination, and accountable government, through the use of civil resistance - including tactics such as strikes, boycotts, protests, and civil disobedience. Learn more...
Zoran Jordanovski, DW, May 18, 2015
Despite several government attempts to prevent the large demonstration on Sunday, people from all over Macedonia gathered in Skopje. Political party flags and banners were largely absent. Instead, the most unmistakable symbols were the different ethnic flags: Macedonian, Albanian, Serbian and those of other minorities. But the protesters were not there to convey a partisan or ethnic message: They were simply discontented Macedonian citizens. Their message to the Prime Minister was loud and clear: Your time is up, resign now! Now that the people have awakened and freed themselves of paralyzing fear, they will fight even more strongly to assert their right to live in a real democracy, not a sham.
International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, May 12, 2015
Another nationwide protest by teachers swept through dozens of cities in Iran on May 7, drawing attention to wages below the poverty line. About 3,000 teachers gathered in front of the parliament in Tehran. The protests were also in support of the release of teachers who were imprisoned because of their activism. President Rouhani told teachers, “I recognize the right of the teachers to protest…You saw this year, that for the first time Iranian workers took to the streets and demonstrated; something that was unprecedented in the past.” Nevertheless, independent unions remain banned in Iran, strikers and protest participants are often fired, and labor leaders face long prison sentences.
Emad El-Din Shahin, The Atlantic, May 19, 2015
On Saturday, an Egyptian court convicted and sentenced me to death in absentia on the basis of fabricated charges. The court never specified the crime that I supposedly committed or produced a shred of evidence. The current Egyptian judicial system is devoid of due process, regard for evidence, and minimum standards of justice, which makes it futile to return to Egypt to appeal my sentence. The essential conflict in today’s Egypt is ostensibly between the military and the Muslim Brotherhood, but it’s really between military rule and democratic, civilian rule. I will continue striving for democracy and rule of law. “Dignity” and “social justice” were not chanted in Tahrir Square in vain.
Brendan Halloran and Walter Flores, Transparency Initiative, May 2015
Citizens can and must be involved in demanding and pressuring government decision-makers to be more responsive to public needs and more accountable for their actions. Advocacy by professional NGOs has its own limits. A more effective social accountability depends on the efforts of people’s organizations and movements seeking more accountable governance. In her recent book Curtailing Corruption: People Power for Accountability, Shaazka Beyerle outlines several pathways by which popular organizing and collective action strengthens accountability.
DW, May 17, 2015
Thousands of Guatemalans took to the streets on Saturday, demanding the nation's president leave office in the wake of a bribery scandal that claimed his former vice president. Demonstrators in 13 cities across the Central American nation banged drums and blew whistles in the peaceful protests. Those in the capital made their way to the main square, unfurling a banner reading "We are the people." Several sectors of industry threw their support behind the movement, including business leaders, student groups, farmers and human rights organizations. "We can't take it anymore. We have to do something to stop all this corruption by our thieving political class," she said.
WEBINAR - Civic Struggle in Venezuela amid Political Polarization
Presented by: Gerardo Gonzalez, Sociologist and Lecturer at Instituto de Estudios Superiores de Administración (IESA) and the Universidad Metropolitana
Thursday, April 30, 2015 | 12:00pm - 1:00pm EDT
This webinar talk will analyze the civic struggle in Venezuela that took place in 2014. Using Peter Ackerman and Hardy Merriman‘s Checklist for Ending Tyranny, the presentation will evaluate the skill-based and organizational capabilities of protesters as well as trends of nonviolent conflict in the country last year. It will also examine the interactions between different actors involved in the conflict, tactics employed by protesters, and analyze why organizers failed to meet their goals.
WEBINAR - Nonviolent Resistance against Enforced Disappearances
Enforced disappearance has been used by undemocratic and democratic regimes as well as violent groups for decades. It is considered one of the most severe crimes because it consists of simultaneous violations of various interrelated human rights norms and has widespread pernicious psychosocial effects on the society. Despite the terrible impact, enforced disappearances have not necessarily led to civic disempowerment. On the contrary, the relatives of the disappeared persons have often engaged in strategic collective actions as a way to resist nonviolently the crime and its demobilizing effects.
WEBINAR - Gradualist Democratization using Civil Resistance
Presented by: Stephen Zunes, Professor of Politics and International Studies, University of San Francisco; Co-Chair, ICNC Academic Advisors Committee
Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Not all successful unarmed civil insurrections against dictatorships take place in a dramatic mass uprising with hundreds of thousands occupying central squares in the capital city. There have also been cases of nonviolent struggles against autocratic regimes that failed to topple the dictatorship in a revolutionary wave, but did succeed in forcing a series of legal, constitutional, and institutional reforms over a period of several years which eventually evolved into a liberal democratic order. These more gradualist transitions have taken place across different regions and against different kinds of authoritarian systems. This webinar will tell the story of pro-democracy movements in three of these countries— Brazil, South Korea, and Kenya —and how they were able to force, over time, autocratic governments to agree to substantive democratic reforms. By focusing on the role of civil society this presentation challenges dominant, top-down, institution and elite-based approaches to democratization.
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