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.

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.

#YouthInAction – Day 1

#YouthInAction – videolog day 1

Videolog from our 1st day of our training course on how to promote active citizenship and democracy.International activity organised with Young European Socialists and hosted by Sozialistische Jugend Deutschlands – Die Falken.Supported by Council of Europe – European Youth Foundation.#YOUTHINACTION

Posted by IUSY on Thursday, June 1, 2017

Videolog from our 1st day of our training course on how to promote active citizenship and democracy.
International activity organised with Young European Socialists and hosted by Sozialistische Jugend Deutschlands – Die Falken.
Supported by Council of EuropeEuropean Youth Foundation.
#YOUTHINACTION

On the Turkish referendum

Turkish referendum

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the country’s prime minister from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) have declared victory in the Sunday referendum, won by a narrow margin and designed to hand Erdogan full power.

The new constitution grants autocratic Erdogan vast powers, including the ability to appoint judges without input from parliament, issue decrees with the force of law, and dissolve parliament. The president would also have the sole prerogative over all senior appointments in the bureaucracy and exercise exclusive control of the armed forces.
The amendments obviate the need for the post of prime minister, which would be abolished. With massive imbalances and virtually no checks on the head of state, all hopes for a democratic Turkey are over.

The entire referendum campaign took place amid political crackdown in the aftermath of a deadly military coup last July, the details of which are still unclear. After the coup attempt, Erdogan has deliberately polarized his country, spreading terror through large-scale purges, with authorities jailing 40.000 and dismissing tens of thousands of civil servants, soldiers, police officers, teachers, justice officials and others from their jobs. In a parallel set of court cases, hundreds of members of the opposition the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) have been imprisoned on terrorism charges, among them Members of Parliament.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which monitored the vote and the campaign that preceded it, concluded in its preliminary assessment that the referendum took place in an environment of unfairness that failed to fully measure up to international standards.

As independent media outlets and their dozens of journalists were arrested or exiled, the AKP’s campaign for Yes dominated Turkey’s media and public spaces.
During the campaign, the AKP rallied nationalist voters by equating the No camp with terrorism. According to the OSCE, the state did not ensure that voters were provided with impartial or balanced information on the amendments and their potential impact, thus limiting their ability to make an informed choice.

Whilst IUSY neither condone nor support Islamaphobia that is inherent within the right-wing populist narrative, we must point out that Erdogan’s use of religious polarisation and instrumentalising Islam to fan ethnoreligious nationalistic sentiment is something that must be fought and condemned.

IUSY stands in full solidarity with our comrades from HDP and CHP in their fight for democracy and freedom.

The international community must stop to ignore all kind of human rights violations in the country and put necessary pressure to release the members of the opposition, journalists, and all political prisoners.

IUSY will continue to fight for democracy, justice, and freedom, in Turkey, and all over the world!

The EU-Turkey agreement it’s not the migration policy that we need!

European Union - Turkey agreement it's not the Migration policy that we need!

Today, it is one year since the deal between the European Union and Turkey on relocation of refugees came into force.

In the absence of a functional relocation scheme within the European Union, a deal was forged that would effectively push back refugees to Turkey, deemed a safe third country. There are, however, numerous reports from leading human rights organisations that Turkey is not safe for refugees (source: HRW, Amnesty International).

The European Union – Turkey deal decreased the amount of crossings along the so called Eastern Mediterranean route from Turkey to Greece. However, the number of migrants trying to reach Europe via the so called Central Mediterranean route from North Africa to Italy increased . The latter route is considerably more dangerous than the former, leading to new deadly records each year. More than 5000 migrants lost their lives in the Mediterranean in 2016  – more than any previous year. In the first two months of 2017, the death toll in the Mediterranean is already higher than in previous years. The vast majority of these victims were attempting to reach Italy (source: IOM).

One year later, we regret to note that the EU-Turkey deal has worsened the already dire situation of thousands of displaced persons. Furthermore, deals modeled on the EU-Turkey deal with even less stable countries, like Libya and several countries in North Africa, threaten to lock up vulnerable people in inhumane situations. We, therefore, demand the following:

1. The urgent implementation of a functional framework for the resettlement of refugees in the European Union. The size of the quotas must reflect the actual needs of protection of asylum seekers.

2. Sufficient support to countries of entry, in particular Greece and Italy, to ensure decent living conditions for refugees and the resources needed to expediently process asylum applications.

3. The abolishment of the Dublin-II regulation and an end to the nationalization of asylum policy in general.

4. The constitution of a European Agency for Asylum and Migration responsible for the examining of asylum applications. This agency has the responsibility to coordinate the national asylum agencies, increase the efficiency and grant for the rights of refugees by consistently applying existing European standards.

5. The creation of more legal channels of migration in order to save lives and reduce human trafficking by all EU Member States to commonly introducing a “humanitarian visa system” allowing refugees to enter the EU territory legally, and thus be able to seek asylum on humanitarian grounds upon arrival. The adoption of common criteria for these visas, and the enabling of asylum seekers to apply to all of the EU countries in any EU embassy by creating a common asylum policy at European level.

6. The revoking of the EU-Turkey deal and the halting of plans for other similar deals with third countries, such as with Libya, until there are guarantees that all agreements with third countries comply with the international humanitarian legal obligations of EU member states. The EU to work together to even out the differences in financial responsibility of member states in managing the external border in order to make sure that no country feel that it is necessary to outsource border control to non-EU countries.

7. The allocation of sufficient resources to the Asylum and Migration Fund, which will include the former asylum and refugee funds, in the EU Multiannual Financial Framework 2014-2020. The EU to ensure that the EU external aid priorities and fundings are coherent with the ones of the Asylum and Migration fund.

Signatories:

EFAy – European Free Alliance Youth
IFLRY – International Federation of Liberal Youth
IUSY – International Union of Socialist Youth
JEF – Young European Federalists
LYMEC – European Liberal Youth
YDE – Young Democrats for Europe
YEL – Youth of the European Left
YES – Young European Socialists
FYEG – Federation of Young European Greens

2nd Working group on Political economy

2nd working group on Political economy of IUSY and YES

Dear Comrades,

we have the pleasure of inviting you to the forthcoming:

IUSY / YES 2ND WORKING GROUP ON POLITICAL ECONOMY

What’s left of the economy

Riga, Latvia

18/21 May 2017

Overview

What: 2nd Working group on Political economy – Organised by IUSY and YES
When: 18-21 May 2017
Where: Riga, Latvia
Age: up to 35 years

Number of participants:

for Europeans: The number of participants is not limited for the period of the registration, however please note that due to high interest no more that 4 participants will likely to be selected. All delegations must be gender balanced.

for non-Europeans: up to 2 participants for each non-European Regional Committee (Asia-Pacific, Africa, America and Mediterranean)

Please note that the working language of the seminar will be only English.

Deadline for registrations:

for Europeans: Friday 28 April 2017 (23:59 CET)
for non-Europeans: Friday 14 April 2017 (23:59 CET)

All the participants must apply via the online form. Apply now
Outline

During our 2nd Political economy Working group seminar, we are going to evaluate the work that has happened so far, engage in discussions on various economic issues and draft a first campaign.

Our work so far has happened decentralized and mostly online. We want to use this opportunity to bring everybody, who participated in the process and everybody, who is interested in the political economy, together.

Theme

At the center of our seminar in Riga are the multiplier workshops on Friday. In five full day workshops on topics, including Tax evasion, International Labor movements, Socialist Utopia, Financial regulations, trade and development economics we will discuss these issues and our positions in depth and provide you with the necessary literature and methodical tools to reproduce the workshop in your local organization.

We want to facilitate knowledge about the political economy in all our member organizations and engage as many people into the work of our group on these important issues.

On Saturday, there will be two panel discussions, one including the Mayor of Riga, Nils Usakovs on “Socially responsible cities” between we are heading to the streets with Restart Latvia.

On the last day, we will develop and outline an international campaign and our next steps as a working group.

For any questions or remarks please don’t hesitate to contact the IUSY Secretariat at iusy@iusy.org or the YES Secretariat at office@youngsocialists.eu

We are very much looking forward to seeing you!

With best regards,

Alessandro Pirisi IUSY Secretary General
Lucie SusovaYES Head of Office

APPLY THROUGH THE ONLINE FORM:

INVITATION LETTER, PROGRAMME AND TECHNICAL DETAILS (.pdf file)

Urgent call to action against looming famine in parts of Africa and Yemen

According to its report on 21 February 2017, UNICEF confirmed that almost 1.4 million children are at imminent risk of death from severe acute malnutrition this year, as famine looms in Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen.

Why are there still famines in parts of the world in the 21st century?  What can be done about it?

The pronouncement of famine in these countries must serve as a wake-up call to all leaders of the developing world, particularly African leaders, to improve on their agricultural sectors to ensure food security for citizens.

The sheer scale and severity of the food insecurity on the African continent and in other parts of the world such as Yemen requires a much stronger response than has been the norm, and the political commitment of world leaders in halting its spread.

In Africa, poverty is undoubtedly the most fundamental cause of famine.

The failure of governments to address issues of chronic poverty has become the perpetual bane of development on the African continent and other parts of the world.

The effects of climate change further pose severe risks to the economies of developing countries, particularly those in Africa.

It is therefore imperative that there is a swift and continuous response on the part of the international community of nations to address issues of carbon emissions and improving environmental protection laws.

African governments cannot fail to notice the need for long-term planning that guarantees a high level of food security in their respective countries.

Prioritization of food security through improved agricultural production and access to food products must not be compromised.

It must be high on the agenda of the African Union and its member countries.

It is equally important to point out the fact that protracted conflicts within States have largely contributed to the ailing economic crisis leading to these famines, such is the case in Yemen and the conflict-prone nations in Africa.

Although there has been much rhetoric on the need to end conflicts in States like South Sudan, Nigeria, Somalia, Yemen and Syria, substantial progress has not been made in terms of peace building and humanitarian assistance within these states.

These conditions leave much to be desired of the efforts of international organizations such as the United Nations Security Council and other international agencies and governments whose actions and inactions contributed to the current conflict situations.

As IUSY calls for a cure to the root causes of famine on the African continent and the Arab League, the world must not be too slow to act to mitigate the effects of prevailing circumstances.

We therefore call on the international community for emergency aid to the affected countries for the protection of human lives.

We further call on the African Union and all other sub regional organizations to strengthen cooperation and support to neighboring countries on the brink of famine to ensure that this imminent crisis is averted.

As a people of common purpose, we have a looming crisis on our hands and IUSY calls for urgent international support of aid agencies and governments to save the lives of persons at risk of death as a result of this predicament.

Food security must be considered a key to ensuring the fundamental right to life of all humans and this underlines our values of solidarity and equality for all.

El discurso de odio de Donald Trump es una amenaza para el mundo

READ THE ARTICLE IN ENGLISH

IUSY condena las expresiones de discriminación del nuevo presidente de los Estados Unidos de América, Donald Tump, las cuales representan un retroceso en las luchas por la igualdad y la unión de los pueblos del mundo. La violencia expresada tanto en discursos como en las políticas propuestas contra grupos de inmigrantes, la comunidad afroamericana, la comunidad LGBTI y las mujeres promueve la intolerancia y el odio.

Desde la Unión Internacional de Juventudes Socialistas (IUSY), vemos con preocupación las políticas propuestas que significarían un retroceso en los derechos conquistados, por lo que es imprescindible mantener una defensa activa de los mismos y la unión de los sectores progresistas contra el avance conservador que representa Trump. Así también, resultan preocupantes sus declaraciones de negación del cambio climático, que suponen un enorme obstáculo para la concertación de acuerdos a nivel global para construir un mundo sostenible ambiental, económica y socialmente.

Por otro lado, condenamos el discurso supremacista blanco, el racismo y la inacción de Donald Trump para detener las acciones de odio de sus seguidores contra las diversas etnicidades en Estados Unidos. Creemos firmemente que un mundo más justo e igualitario sólo puede ser construido desde la tolerancia y la pluralidad.

Por último, vemos con suma preocupación las posiciones asumidas por Michael Pence, Vicepresidente de Estados Unidos, en contra de la comunidad LGBTI y en contra del derecho de las mujeres de decidir sobre sus cuerpos, así como su cercanía a sectores ultraconservadores durante su ejercicio como Gobernador de Indiana.

Nos solidarizamos con los sectores progresistas que manifiestan y luchan contra el avance de la derecha en Estados Unidos, con las compañeras y compañeros que marcharon en la Protesta de las Mujeres del 21 de enero, y especialmente con nuestras compañeras y compañeros de YDS. Llamamos a las organizaciones progresistas del mundo a solidarizarse y establecer acciones conjuntas atendiendo a la importancia de Estados Unidos como una de las potencias globales y su importancia en la agenda internacional.

Juntos venceremos.