Demonstration against corruption

Thousands of people crowded into Moscow’s Pushkin Square on Sunday for an unsanctioned protest against the Russian government, the biggest gathering in a wave of nationwide protests that were the most extensive show of defiance in years. State news agency Tass cited Moscow police as saying about 500 people were arrested.

Alexei Navalny, the anti-corruption campaigner who is leading the opposition to President Vladimir Putin, was arrested while walking from a nearby subway station to the demonstration at Moscow’s iconic Pushkin Square.

Navalny and his Foundation for Fighting Corruption had called for the protests, which attracted hundreds or thousands in most sizeable Russian cities, from the Far East port of Vladivostok to the European heartland including St. Petersburg.

The protests were the largest coordinated outpourings of dissatisfaction in Russia since the massive 2011-12 demonstrations that followed a fraud-tainted parliamentary election.

 

Source:http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/corruption-protests-held-russia-arrests-reported-46381149

Asma Janhangir

The United Nations Special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran is a United Nations Special Rapporteur whose mandate is to monitor and investigate human rights in Iran. The current Special Rapporteur is Asma Jahangir, a human rights lawyer of Pakistani origin and a former President of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan. She has held the position since 2016.

For decades, human rights defender Asma Jahangir has numbered among the strongest voices for democracy and progressive policies in Pakistan and, more recently, around the world. Her career has spanned legal representation and reform, writing, and advocacy, all for the rights of communities left behind by their governments. Despite death threats, personal attacks, and even a plan by the Pakistani government to assassinate her, Jahangir stands tall for women, minorities, and all those without protection.

Source:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asma_Jahangir

Balance..

Maintaining balance in life is essential to achieve happiness as any extreme tendencies leads to attachment.

By striving towards balance we can be sure that we are acting out of love and not out of selfish behaviour.

“Your hand opens and closes, opens and closes. If it were always a fist or always stretched open, you would be paralysed. Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding, the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated as birds’ wings.”
– Rumi

 

Human rights film festival

Human Rights Watch is one of the world’s leading independent organizations dedicated to defending and protecting human rights.

Through the Human Rights Watch Film Festival  brings to life human rights abuses through storytelling in a way that challenges each individual to empathize and demand justice for all people.

The HRW Film Festival currently screens in over 20 cities around the world throughout the year. The festival’s programming committee operates out of the New York office to screen more than 500 films each year.

humnasrighstwatch

Source:https://ff.hrw.org/about

 

 

Democracy vs populism..

The ductch election on Wednesday was an important one in the stand against populism in Europe after last’s year British vote to leave the European Union and the election of US President Donald Trump.

With centre-right Prime Minister Mark Rutte on course for a victory over anti-Islam and anti-EU Geert Wilders early on Thursday, there was relief from other EU governments facing a wave of nationalism. With 95 percent of votes counted, Mr Rutte’s VVD Party won 33 of parliament’s 150 seats, down from 41 at the last vote in 2012.

“It is an evening in which the Netherlands, after Brexit, after the American elections, said ‘stop’ to the wrong kind of populism,” Mr Rutte said.

Source:http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/16/won-dutch-election-does-mean-geert-wilders-far-right-netherlands/

Again the spring has come..

Again, the violet bows to the lily.
Again, the rose is tearing off her gown!

The green ones have come from the other world,
tipsy like the breeze up to some new foolishness.

Again, near the top of the mountain
the anemone’s sweet features appear.

The hyacinth speaks formally to the jasmine,
“Peace be with you.” “And peace to you, lad!
Come walk with me in this meadow.”

Again, there are sufis everywhere!
The bud is shy, but the wind removes
her veil suddenly, “My friend!”

The Friend is here like water in the stream,
like a lotus on the water.

And the clove to the willow, “You are the one
I hope for.” The willow replies, “Consider
these chambers of mine yours. Welcome!”

The apple, “Orange, why the frown?”
“So that those who mean harm
will not see my beauty.”

The ringdove comes asking, “Where,
where is the Friend?”

With one note the nightingale
indicates the rose.

Again, the season of Spring has come
and a spring-source rises under everything,
a moon sliding from the shadows.

– Rumi Free-spring

 

Globalization

The European Union’s 60th anniversary this month comes at a time when some political leaders are attracting significant popular support for policies that directly call into question the value of the union. It’s not just the EU under attack, but NATO, the United Nations, the Council of Europe and its human rights court, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – all the institutions and ideals that emerged in the post-war, post-Holocaust spirit of “never again” that bolster respect for human rights and rule of law are facing fresh attacks in western democracies and beyond.

These post-war hopes and institutions backing democracy and human rights were the radical ideas of their time in response to dire circumstances. Nothing less than the peace and security of Europe depends on it.

globalization-and-systemic-risks-featured-537x350

 

Source:https://www.hrw.org/news/2017/03/10/radical-idea-europe

Then what should I fear?

Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī, also known as Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Balkhī, Mevlânâ/Mawlānā (“our master”), Mevlevî/Mawlawī (“my master”), and more popularly simply as Rumi (30 September 1207 – 17 December 1273), was a 13th-century persian poet, islamic scholar and a sufi mystic.

The general theme of Rumi’s thought, like that of other mystic and sufi poets of persian literature, is that of tawhid — union with the Beloved, from whom he sees himself as being cut off.  His longing and desire to attain it is evident in the following poem from his book the Masnavi;

I died to the mineral state and became a plant,
I died to the vegetable state and reached animality,
I died to the animal state and became a man,
Then what should I fear? I have never become less from dying.
At the next charge (forward) I will die to human nature,
So that I may lift up (my) head and wings (and soar) among the angels,
And I must (also) jump from the river of (the state of) the angel,
Everything perishes except His Face,
Once again I will become sacrificed from (the state of) the angel,
I will become that which cannot come into the imagination,
Then I will become non-existent; non-existence says to me (in tones) like an organ,
Truly, to Him is our return.

Source:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rumi

http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20140414-americas-best-selling-poet

 

 

International Women’s Day – March 8, 2017

The only way for true equality between women and men is the acceptance of the true indifference and equality between them.

To regard one another as members of the same human kind, instead of men and women, all important in building a better world for us all.

 

You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals. To that end, each of us must work for his own improvement and, at the same time, share a general responsibility for all humanity, our particular duty being to aid those to whom we think we can be most useful.
– Marie Curie

ISIS Accused of Unleashing Chemical Weapons in Mosul

The Islamic State (also known as ISIS) has been accused of carrying out a chemical attack in Mosul last week, which, if confirmed, would appear to be the first time it has used this tactic during its battle with Iraqi government forces to retake control of the city.

The use of chemicals as a weapon is a war crime. It is also a serious threat to both civilians and combatants, particularly in a city as densely populated as Mosul.

Yet this latest reported chemical attack would not be ISIS’s first in Iraq. After Iraqi troops retook the town of Qayyarah, 60 kilometers south of Mosul last year, ISIS launched at least three chemical attacks in September and October.

Source:https://www.hrw.org/news/2017/03/06/isis-accused-unleashing-chemical-weapons-mosul