Stand up for Human rights!

Human rights day 2017

“The Universal Declaration of Human Rights cannot be just words on a paper,” said Howard Lee, IUSY President.

“It has to become a tangible reality of every human being”, he continues. Today, 10th of Dicember, is the International Day of Human Rights.

Thanks to the unprecedented access to knowledge and information, humans are more aware than ever before of their place in this world; both as individuals as well as part of the global community of humans.

The beautiful and astonishing plurality of our world, becomes more and more so, as our awareness grows by the exponentially increasing connectivity we enjoy through technology.

We are now better connected than ever before to other human beings who have different economic, political, cultural, and social values.

Never ever have we been able to touch, feel, know and even fall in love with fellow humans who are ethnically, historically, linguistically, and religiously different from us.

We should be more mindful than ever before that all human beings should respect each other’s human rights to exist, grow, prosper, and thrive as what we are born to be and as of whom who choose to become.

Yet, the technology that enables us to know about the diversity of our world and our species is being used to create, frictions, anger, hatred, conflict and even war between human beings.

Furthermore, diversity and plurality itself is the instrument used to incite confrontation, as though separation and homogeneity is the only path to harmony.

The fundamental solution to all of this needs to be the universal acknowledgement and acceptance that every human being should have some certain basic inalienable rights, and these should be what is written in the Universal Declaration of Human rights.

It is our duty to ensure that human rights are respected in the communities we live, in our neighbourhoods, at our schools, in our families.

IUSY and YES joint statement on the US decision to move their embassy in Jerusalem

Mediterranean USA Jerusalem

Jerusalem holds unique political, religious and spiritual significance and has always been an epicenter of the conflict in the Middle East and a critical issue for resolving it.

Any decision regarding Jerusalem should not be taken lightly and even more so unilaterally and its consequences should never be underestimated.

The UN Security Council, entrusted with the maintenance of international peace and security, adopted several resolutions, including the most recent UNSC resolution 2334 (2016) that clearly evoked the issue of Jerusalem and reaffirmed its centrality and the principles applicable to the situation prevailing in the holy city.

In these resolutions, the Security Council recalled in unequivocal terms that all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel, the occupying Power, which purport to alter the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem have no legal validity and constitute a flagrant violation of international law and a serious obstruction to achieving peace in the Middle East.

UNSC resolution 478 (1980) determined the responsibilities of all States in this regard and decided not to recognize Israel’s pursuit to alter the character and status of Jerusalem. It also calls upon all Member States to accept this decision and those that have established diplomatic missions to withdraw from the Holy City.

These resolutions were adopted on the basis of the UN Charter and international law, and the cardinal principle of the illegality of acquisition of land by force, reflecting the world’s rejection of Israel’s illegal policies.

This stance was further confirmed by the International Court of Justice’s ruling on the wall erected by Israel in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem.

Moving the US embassy in contravention of these clear and fundamental rules would constitute a political and legal earthquake with far reaching and volatile consequences, at a time where the region is witnessing unprecedented turmoil with global ramifications.

No peace can be brokered and no solutions found without Jerusalem. Those who act to consolidate Israel’s illegal actions and annexation of Eastern Jerusalem, capital of Palestine, only drags the agenda further away from peace and by default, disqualify themselves from a seat on the table of conciliation and resolution.

The Trump administration’s decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem would constitute an act of aggression against the Palestinian people’s rights and a grave breach of international law. It could also push the two-State solution based on 1967 borders beyond the point of resuscitation.

The death of the two-State solution would dramatically change both the face of the conflict, as well as the framework for solving it.

There will also be grave consequences for the entire region. Such a US decision will not only harm the Palestinian people, but those it pretends to help; as advancing the occupation is escalating the conflict.

We call on the US administration to carefully re-assess the impact of this move, taking into account the United States’ image, interests, and security.  The US government’s role is to best serve and preserve the interests of the American people, not those of the Israeli Government.

The Trump adminsitration’s move runs counter to the positions adopted by successive Democratic and Republican administrations for over 3 decades, not to mention the unshakable international consensus. It is impossible to understand how such a move of provocation and aggression, can have positive effects for the United States and its interests in the region and globally. 

Many Palestinian citizens of Israel declared that if Trump will recognize West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and East Jerusalem as Capital of Palestine, it would be a positive action that they will support as a step for the 2 state solution.

The US administration has to choose between abdicating to the most extremist views of the nationalistic right movement in Israel and its representatives in the Israeli government or to stand its ground and work on advancing peace. It must be clear that these two positions are mutually exclusive.

We also call on all of our IUSY and YES members, the relevant international institutions and all freedom loving peoples across the world to mobilize in defending and upholding international law.

The mobilization of all political and moral forces of our time is more needed than ever to end the injustice and the dispossession endured by the Palestinian people for 70 years and the military and occupation of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip for 50 years.

The Palestinian people – like all humans – have inalienable rights, including a right to self-determination and independence, a right to freedom and dignity. They have every intention to exercise these rights in their sovereign State, with East Jerusalem as its capital. That is the path to peace and security for all the peoples in the region.

The alternative is conflict and Apartheid, which we must avoid at all costs.

IUSY – International Union of Socialist Youth
YES – Young European Socialists

Presidium statement on the US threat to the PLO permanence in Washington DC.

United States - Israel - Palestine

The International Union of Socialist Youth (IUSY) strongly condemns the recent pronouncement made by the United States government in threatening the existence of the Palestinian Liberation organization Office in Washington DC.

With this decision, the Trump administration will effectively lose its credibility as a neutral mediator in the ongoing peace process between Israel and Palestine. By threatening the legitimacy of the PLO’s existence on its territory, the United States government will derail the ongoing negotiations to the detriment of both Israel and Palestine.

We urge the United States government to remain impartial in its role in the peace talks and to consider the rights of the Palestinians and Israelis identically.

Instead of closing down the PLO, it should instead focus its energy and resources in ensuring that the peace negotiations provide both countries and their respective citizens the right to peaceful homes and sovereignty.
Threatening the right of Palestinians to representation in the United States does not only impede on the inalienable rights of Palestinian but directly disregards the Country’s right to self-determination, independence, and establishment.

We stand one with our comrades from the Fateh Youth Organisation and the Palestinian people in their struggle for fairness and justice.

We echo the words of United Nations General assembly President Miroslav Lajčák when he said, “When it comes to the question of Palestine, we have a responsibility and we have an interest. Palestinian people do not need our sympathy – they deserve our solidarity.”

IUSY Presidium statement on the Sinai attack

Sinai Attack - Egypte

The International Union of Socialist Youth (IUSY) is deeply shocked and saddened by the horrific terrorist attacks carried out on Friday, 24th November in Sinai, Egypt, by terrorist groups, which have claimed 336 lives and injured many innocent people.

We send our deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims and our sympathy to all those who were affected by this heinous crime. IUSY stands in solidarity with all the people of Sinai and of the entire Egypt. 

IUSY underlines its firm support for and solidarity with our socialist family in Egypt, and all human rights organisations in their struggle against terrorism, radicalism, discrimination, and oppression.

We will continue to work for a society that celebrates equality, social justice and peace.

This despicable act of terror in Egypt is an attack against peace, and against all of our socialist values. However, cowardly attacks like this will not stop IUSY or any of the organisations that share the vision for a peaceful world.

Now, more than ever, we are determined to continue our collective struggle all over the world against terrorism and violence. 

Today, we stand together with the people of Sinai and of Egypt, against terror and disregard for human life and in defence of fundamental human rights and values that unite civilisations the world over.

IUSY STATEMENT ON SLAVERY IN LIBYA

African Committee: end Slavery in Libya!

It has been reported for years that those who have crossed the Mediterranean have shared stories about beatings, kidnapping and enslavement.

More recent allegations of migrants being sold into slavery in Libya have been surfacing since the International Organization for Migration first brought up the matter in April 2017.

In October, CNN discovered that sales of migrants, in particular youths from Niger and other sub-Saharan countries being sold to buyers for about $400 (£300) in Tripoli and about nine other undisclosed locations in Libya.

In the last few days, new reports have emerged that migrants trying to reach Europe have spoken of being held by smugglers and forced to work for little or no money.

Current United Nations estimates place the number of migrants in Libya around 700,000. The safety of all the migrants travelling through Libya and the preservation of freedom and human dignity is of the utmost importance to the International Union of Socialist Youth (IUSY).

As an international organization focused on the fight for freedom and social justice, we emphatically denounce the atrocious acts of slave trade taking place in Libya and strongly condemns the practice and its perpetrators.

We urge the government of Libya to take swift and decisive action to put an end to all sales of persons within its territory.

IUSY further calls on the government to take all necessary steps to ensure the safety of migrants in the Country and to provide facilities and resources that are needed for the humane treatment and processing of the migrants while they are within the borders of Libya.

IUSY further calls on the International community at large to take bold and persistent action to end the modern slavery that has been overlooked for some time now.

The protection of human life, freedom from slavery and forced servitude, and the preservation of human dignity, are rights germane to the duties of all Nations under international law and international institutions particular the United Nations must be seen to be taking swift measures to end these heinous actions in Libya and other countries alike.

An enhanced international cooperation is required to ensure the clampdown on human smugglers and traffickers and the enforcement of international law that guarantees an end to the atrocities associated with slavery and human trafficking.

We finally reiterate our call to the International community to find sustainable solutions through solidarity and development cooperation to address the key challenges confronting the developing world which invariably account for the high proportions of migration from these countries travelling through unapproved routes while increasing the opportunities for legal migration.

Apoyamos iniciativa del 25% para la juventud en los espacios de representación política de República Dominicana

PEDIMOS MAS ESPACIO PARA LA JUVENTUD DE REPUBLICA DOMINICANA

La Unión Internacional de Juventudes Socialistas expresa su apoyo a los reclamos de la juventud de los movimientos políticos de la República Dominicana para que en la actual discusión sobre la ley de partidos políticos y la reforma del código electoral, sea incluida una cuota de participación del 25% para la juventud en los espacios de elección popular.

Hemos visto con preocupación los bajos índices de representación juvenil que se observa en los distintos espacios de representación política, por consiguiente, nos sumamos a las propuestas que han unificado a la juventud dominicana para lograr mayores niveles de representación.

Esta organización internacional que reúne a los jóvenes lideres de izquierda esta comprometida con la educación y la formación política. En ese sentido entendemos que una porción de los fondos que destina el estado dominicano a los partidos políticos debe ser dirigidos a la formación política de los jóvenes para crear mayores niveles de conciencia política y ciudadana, así como avanzar hacia la profesionalización del ejercicio político.

Estamos consiente que la juventud representa un sector esencial para el desarrollo de los países y entendemos que las leyes de la República Dominicana deben fomentar la participación de los jóvenes en los espacios de toma de decisión, por lo que exhortamos a los legisladores dominicanos incluir en la ley de partidos políticos y el código electoral, los legítimos reclamos de la juventud dominicana.

Desde IUSY saludamos la iniciativa que distintos actores políticos han asumido como bandera a favor de esta propuesta, en especial la juventud de las diferentes organizaciones políticas de la República Dominicana.

Resolution of the African committee Leadership meeting 2017

The Africa Committee of the International Union of Socialist Youth held its leadership conference from the 9th to 12th November 2017 in Pretoria, South Africa, under the auspices of its Member organization – SWAYOCO. The theme of the conference was Deepening Democracy, Social Justice, and Equality in Africa.

The Africa Committee noted that the socio-economic challenges facing the continent have left a huge number of young people in a precarious position of destitution, unemployment, dwindling opportunities for education, and increased attraction to crime amongst others. The Committee also agreed that as the neo-liberal agenda takes over, the plethora of challenges facing the Continent revolve around rising inequalities, increasing extremism and terrorism, hunger, marginalization of women, discrimination based on sexuality, a backlash on democracy, and poverty.

The former IUSY President and current South African Member of Parliament and Minister of Police, Comrade Fikile Mbalula, reminded the Committee of its founding principles of promoting social justice, equality and fairness in the world. He reminded the IUSY leadership to continue to be vocal on the international issues pertaining to the advancement of IUSY’s core principles and also to continue to show solidarity across the Globe. Finally, Comrade Mbalula cautioned the Committee, as the youth of this generation, to remain the leading voice in the pursuit of social justice and equality. He mentioned that young people needed to be radical and principled in standing up against any forms of dictatorship and he called upon the youth to analyze the current geopolitics with the view of coming up with a credible alternative that will make this country a better place for everyone.

The Committee noted overarching challenges such as the rising levels of unemployment across several countries on the continent. A large majority of young people are failing to access employment due to the fact that some industries and companies are closing down.

Further, the Committee noted the increasing spate of injustice and abuse of human rights in some African countries particular Swaziland, Eritrea, and Western Sahara, among others. Zimbabwe was reported to be in a situation of state capture by the first family which has caused an affront to the promotion of democracy in the country. It was further noted that the state of the economy was having an effect on the general welfare of the country as a lot of people were failing to make ends meet.

From Swaziland, the issues noted were that political parties are banned in the country and that people are not allowed to criticize the government because it is tantamount to criticizing the King which is not allowed. The representatives reported that most Swazi have gone into exile and it is difficult to prosecute the struggle at home. In response, the Speaker reiterated the need for regional, continental and international solidarity on the Swaziland issue.

It was noted that Morocco had joined back into the African Union Community officially and that the transition to democracy is underway in the country as there is a coalition government mandated to ensure there is progress in the country.

The Former chairperson of the African Union, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma gave a presentation on the challenges women are facing, especially young women of our continent. She noted that youths are catalysts to change and they need to make use of their energy and age to push for change in society. Thus, youth need to be skilled in whatever they are doing. She bemoaned the fact that youth together with are marginalized but that should not deter them from seeking a better world for themselves. She also noted that Africa needs to industrialize for it to develop as manufacturing, value addition in agriculture and infrastructure development all would contribute to the development of Africa and making it a powerhouse in world politics and trade.

It was agreed by the Africa Committee that the role of youth organisations means that they have to run with the 2063 agenda since new development and investment opportunities offered by the Agenda 2063 will require a technological revolution, decreasing conflicts in Africa and creating new international alliances.

Finally, President Zuma spoke to the Africa Committee and challenged young people to get into conversation around the reformation of international organisations. He urged young people to speak up against injustices happening in the Middle East where the UN vetoing has been abused by two major powers that continue to destroy countries such as Syria. In that regard, he called upon the youth to be at the forefront of the calls to reform and transform the United Nations and ensure participation of all countries by having Africa occupying a permanent seat in the UN Security Council so as to foster peace and security in the World.

He noted with concern how former colonial powers still want to continue influencing how their former colonies operate and he called upon young people to stop this unnecessary pressure and define how the political economy of the globe is managed.

He ended by challenging the youth to stop the rise of right-wing parties and organisation so young people need to continue as a stronger voice of the left.

The Committee in its deliberations noted the need for member organisations to avert their minds and activities towards ensuring that the interest of marginalized groups and minorities in societies are for championed and policies that ensure their inclusion in societal development are advocated for.

The Africa Committee, therefore, resolved as follows:
  1. There is the need for regional and continental solidarity to issues and challenges happening in member countries. IUSY is expected to take a leading role in the provision of solidarity to nations and institutions around the globe faces crisis.
  2. There has to be continuously engaged around the conflict between the Western Sahara and Morocco to ensure that the issue comes to a pacific and political solution which guarantees self-determination of the Western Sahara.
  3. African member states must expedite the introduction of free interaction in travel and trade and the production of African passports should be done as a matter of urgency.
  4. There must be a strengthening of the regional and continental networks especially in the deepening democracy and promotion of social justice.
  5. There is need to come up with a number of programmes in the different countries so as to strengthen Member Organisations as well reaching out to more young people in the home countries.
  6. There is need to further strengthen the networks and linkages between and amongst Member Organisations.
  7. In line with IUSY statutes and in the principle of promoting gender equality and closing gender gaps, delegations to IUSY meetings and platforms should be gender balanced at all costs.
  8. The African Committee noted the upcoming IUSY Congress to be held in February 2018 and we do hereby declare that Africa needs to be given an opportunity to lead the organization. In that regard, the current Coordinator of the committee Ms. Benedicta Lasi is nominated as the Committee’s preference to run for the position of President of IUSY.

Zimbabwe needs a democratic governance in the shortest time possibile

Zimbabwe - the Africa committee in South Africa

It has been reported on the 14th of November, 2017 that the military in charge of Zimbabwe announced through a spokesperson that the governance of the Country has been taken over by the military in its quest to purge the country of people who they believe have plunged the country into “social and economic suffering.”

The Africa committee of the International Union of Socialist Youth (IUSY) calls on the military and other stakeholders in Zimbabwe to exercise restraint in their actions as they work at finding a lasting solution to the current political developments.

The supreme interest, safety and well-being of the people of Zimbabwe should be the suprime-priority for the interim period that the military assumes the helm of affairs.

Africa has a well-documented and unfortunate history of harsh military regimes that have engaged in widespread violations of human rights after the usurpation of constitutional governments. Consequently, Africans have grown averse to military interventions in governance and have developed a commitment to stable, peaceful, and prosperous democratic governance.Zi

The IUSY Africa committee shares in the collective concern of the people of Zimbabwe on the possibility of a new military dictatorship.

The Africa Committee of IUSY therefore calls the international community particularly the African Union and the Southern African Development Committee (SADC) to take pragmatic steps to ensure that the situation in Zimbabwe does not deteriorate.

The IUSY Africa Committee further calls on the people of Zimbabwe, especially Political parties, Civil society, and the media to actively, progressively and peacefully work with the leadership of the Military to restore the country to democratic governance in the shortest time possible.