militarization

Contemporary “Worship” of Firearms: Challenging Current Interpretations of the 2nd Amendment

Please join Religions for Peace for a discussion on the evolution of the 2nd amendment and how the civic religion of the United States uses / subverts Judeo-Christian teachings to exalt firearms. We will explore how the interpretation of 2nd amendment as an individual right to bear arms has superseded the unalienable right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” enumerated in the US Declaration of Independence.

*Join Live via Zoom or Facebook

Zoom registration is required but complimentary. Please click here to register.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the Committee of Religious NGOs at the United Nations, please visit rngos.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Mental Health, please visit ngomentalhealth.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Spirituality, Values, and Global Concerns/NY, please visit csvgc-ny.org.

Protecting Education from Attack: A Call for Improving Data Monitoring and Policy Response

Virtual side event to the ECOSOC High-Level Political Forum

The event will be entirely virtual, with simultaneous translation provided in English and French. Please register here, by Tuesday, 5 July, to participate. The event will also be livestreamed on UN Web TV.

Background

Attacks on education have harrowing effects, ranging from tragic deaths on account of damage to physical infrastructure, psychological injuries and threats that lead to school disruption and loss of learning over time. Long recognized by the international community in Article 26 of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Right to Education obliges Member States to ensure its protection, respect, and fulfilment for all. In contexts of armed conflict, this inalienable human right has been further reiterated and reinforced by international humanitarian law and other prominent soft law mechanisms and tools, such as the Safe Schools Declaration and its guidelines, which aim to protect schools from military use. However, as it stands, the right to education is denied for many conflict-affected children and other vulnerable populations who fall victim to attacks on education. To this end, much needs to be done to ensure stronger evidence-based policies and conducive environments at the national level for the effective implementation of international legal frameworks.

Objectives

Organized in the margins of the ECOSOC High-Level Political Forum (HLPF), the virtual side-event will underscore the need for Member States to ensure full protection of the right to education in times of armed conflict, and will particularly aim to enhance government capacities to formulate and implement evidence-based policies on attacks on education within national data systems to better guide their actions towards realizing SDG 4. More particularly, this virtual event will bring together UN Member States, UN agencies and education stakeholders to highlight key challenges and promising practices around the following objectives:

  •  Inform key stakeholders on data, policy measures and tools needed to strengthen national capacities in order to effectively review, respond, prevent, and mitigate occurrences of attacks on education and military use of schools to better deliver and accelerate progress towards SDG 4.
  • Identify linkages for Member States to strengthen national action on data collection and analysis on attacks on education as enhanced data collection and management will allow for better-informed robust policies to prevent, mitigate and respond to attacks on education and ensure educational continuity for all during times of peace and war.
  • Promote greater quality and institutionalization of attacks on education data into national education systems to foster greater national ownership and increased harmonization and integration into education sector policies and plans. This will further enable the inclusion of the most vulnerable populations in crisis contexts while bridging the humanitarian-development divide in delivering education for all.
  • Secure further introduction of tools especially designed to assist refugees and vulnerable migrants, in particular Qualifications Passport for Refugees as a recognition tool particularly designed for these individuals.
  • Identify key recommendations on how to engage with international actors and mechanisms and optimize national actions in line with ongoing preparations for the Transforming Education Summit (TES), which aims to strengthen and accelerate the implementation of existing multilateral agreements, particularly the 2030 Agenda framework, and galvanize action towards meeting SDG4 goals at the national and global levels.

Organizers

This virtual event is co-organized by Belgium, Malta, Norway, the State of Qatar, Gabon, UNESCO and OSRSG-CAAC.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bobbinassar@yahoo.com or bknotts@uua.org.

Remembering Past Massacres: Honoring the legacy and resilience of the victims

The webinar, part of the ongoing “Remembering Past Massacres” series, will focus on Latin America, with speakers reflecting on the atrocities committed against Indigenous populations in the name of Christianization, the trans-Atlantic slave trade, the ruthless military dictatorships in South America during the 1960s-80s, and the 1937 massacre of Haitians in the Dominican Republic.

The webinar will be in Spanish and English.

Register here: us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_8Rd14QbmQkKa50EyZyGmyQ

Speakers include:

  • Moderator – Rev. Gloria Ulloa Alvarado, WCC President for Latin America
  • Co-facilitator – Rev. Dr. Mikie Roberts, WCC staff

Panellists:

  • Dr. Betty Ruth Lozano Lerma, Colombia
  • Nobel Peace Laureate Mr. Adolfo Perez Esquivel, Argentina
  • Prof. Dr. Jessica Byron-Reid, WCC Commission of the Churches on International Affairs member, Trinidad and Tobago

More info via social media:

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP. For more information on the Committee of Religious NGOs at the United Nations, please visit rngos.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org.

The Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone Treaty: Protocol and the Way Forward

The Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone Treaty (SEANWFZ Treaty) was signed in Bangkok on 15 December 1995 by 10 Southeast Asian States (ASEAN Member States) and entered into force on 27 March 1997, committing the region to nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation in line with the 1971 Declaration on the Zone of Peace, Freedom and Neutrality (ZOPFAN). The webinar falls under the implementation of Action 5 of United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres’ Agenda for Disarmament: Securing Our Common Future, which aims to strengthen and consolidate nuclear-weapon-free zones, including by facilitating enhanced cooperation and consultation between existing zones, encouraging nuclear-weapon States (NWS) to adhere to the relevant protocols to the treaties establishing such zones.

Co-organized by the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs and the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS) of the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, this event aims to raise awareness on the issue of the SEANWFZ Treaty and to generate ideas for accelerating the signing and ratification of the Protocol to the Treaty by the NWS.

The webinar is open for participation by New York, Geneva and Vienna-based diplomats, academia and representatives of civil society. Speakers will engage in a moderated discussion representing different perspectives on the challenges surrounding implementation of the SEANWFZ, followed by a Q&A session with the audience.

Register here!

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP.

Abolition 2000, global civil society network for the elimination of nuclear weapons

PNND members, partners and supporters are invited to participate in the annual meeting of Abolition 2000, the global civil society network for the elimination of nuclear weapons.

Abolition 2000 was established in 1995 during the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review and Extension Conference. Over 2000 organizations from around the world have endorsed the Abolition 2000 founding statement which outlines a mix of incremental and comprehensive measures to achieve a nuclear-weapon-free world.

Abolition 2000 builds cooperation between civil society and legislators through its partnership with PNND. The Annual Meeting provides an opportunity to share ideas and initiatives, discuss strategy and build cooperation for more effective campaigns and policy actions.

See below for details about the program. Click here to register for the meeting. We invite you to read the PNND Report for the Abolition 2000 meeting. Additionally, in preparation for the annual meeting, Abolition 2000 has interviewed 6 people, from a range of backgrounds in peace and disarmament. They address the theme of the 2021 annual meeting: How do we move from a dysfunctional world to a world free of nuclear weapons? Click here see the interviews: youtube.com/playlist?list=PLNLSpPdpFraCBUmKLTTxP9qTX1vviq3jN

The meeting will be held in two sessions of 90 minutes each:

Session 1: Campaign updates and reports. Strategy discussion on challenges and opportunities to advance nuclear abolition. Introduction of proposals.

Session 2:Discussion of proposals. Abolition 2000 Secretariat report. Fundraising. Affirmation of the Abolition 2000 Coordinating Committee and Global Council. Calendar of upcoming events.

In order to enable participation by organisations and activists around the world, Session 1 will be held twice:
Session 1 (a) is timed to suit participation by those from Asia/Pacific.
Session 1 (b) is timed to suit participation by those from the Americas and Europe.

Click here for more information including the Session times for your location. Click here to register for the meeting.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org.

Biden and Economic Imperialism | Biden y el imperialismo económico

Biden has been hailed as an antidote to Trump who will “restore America’s place in the world.” Centuries of US imperialism show he actually represents a continuation of neoliberal exploitation and settler colonialism.

A panel of American and global South activists will analyze Biden’s role in upholding US imperialism beyond the military, focusing on his economic policies–including around trade, investment, finance, climate, and food systems–which underpin US empire in profound ways.

Critically assessing the implications of Biden’s first 100 days, this event will engage participants around what’s at stake for our anti-imperialist activism.

We at Regions Refocus invite you to join us with your questions and thoughts, and we welcome messages at team@regionsrefocus.org.

Register here!

Panel:

US Dollar Hegemony and Special Drawing Rights | Hegemonía del dólar estadounidense y los derechos especiales de giro: Francisco Pérez (Center for Popular Economics, USA)

Biden’s Climate Plan and Green Imperialism | El Plan Climático de Biden y el Imperialismo Verde: Max Ajl (Observatory for Food Sovereignty and the Environment, Tunisia)

Agribusiness and US-India Trade Relations | Agronegocios y Relaciones Comerciales EE.UU.-India: Sagari Ramdas (Food Sovereignty Alliance, India)

Extractivism and the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement | El extractivismo y el Tratado entre México, Estados Unidos y Canadá: Manuel Pérez-Rocha (Institute for Policy Studies/ Mexican Action Network on Free Trade, Mexico)

COVID-19 Vaccine Justice | Justicia de Vacunas COVID-19: Salimah Valiani (Independent Researcher)

Moderator | Moderador: Camden Goetz (Regions Refocus, USA)

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org.  For more information on the Decolonization Alliance, email lbautista@umcjustice.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP.

Civilian Safety in Armed Conflict: Community-based protection, early warning, and conflict preparedness

Civilian Safety in Armed Conflict: Community-based protection, early warning, and conflict preparedness

In this webinar, the second of a two-part series exploring existing efforts to improve the safety of civilians during armed conflict, we at PHAP will be discussing “secondary” prevention programs, in particular those focusing on strengthening communities in conflict-affected areas to reduce the risk of harm and mitigate the effects of armed conflict on civilian populations. We will hear from NGOs active in situations of armed conflict around the word about how they approach building capacity for prevention in communities – what the main considerations are and in which situations they are effective. We will also discuss what other organizations can learn from their approach and the implications this has for the humanitarian community as a whole.

Register here!

Background:

In armed conflict, the humanitarian community continues to witness highly disturbing situations where the safety of civilians is ignored or not addressed, or where civilians are purposely targeted by parties to a conflict. While protection services continue to provide much-needed support to vulnerable and marginalized groups and individuals and respond to protection concerns with remedial service provision, limited progress has been made on contributing to civilians’ safety in armed conflict. As Hugo Slim expressed it in the recent Oxford Lecture Series on Protection: “When you look at protection’s track record through wars, protection is at its weakest here, in this challenge in protecting people from physical harm and unlawful devastating attacks on their persons and homes.”

In the last few years, there has been a push by both humanitarian agencies and donors to examine how we can prevent and protect civilians from physical harm during conflict. Key questions remain: what does prevention mean and look like within our protection of civilians programming? Where does civilian safety “fit” within the humanitarian architecture?

There are, however, several existing approaches to mitigate and reduce risk in armed conflict for the civilian population, including how to prevent violence from happening in the first place and how to strengthen civilian self-protection strategies through community-based initiatives. This two-part webinar series aims to provide an overview of the range of strategies currently undertaken by national and international civil society organizations, UN agencies, and donors, providing examples of good practice, and discuss how such efforts can be advanced and systematized in the wider humanitarian community.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Migration, please visit ngo-migration.org.

Civilian Safety in Armed Conflict: Strategies and approaches for direct prevention of violence

Civilian Safety in Armed Conflict: Strategies and approaches for direct prevention of violence

In this first of two webinars exploring existing efforts to improve the safety of civilians during armed conflict, we at PHAP will be discussing “primary” prevention programs, which focus on advocacy, armed actor behavior change, and direct engagement with armed actors, either by the humanitarian organization or by facilitating this engagement by communities. We will hear from civil society organizations and UN agencies about their approaches to primary prevention – what the main considerations are and in which situations they are effective. We will also discuss what other organizations can learn from their approach and the implications this has for the humanitarian community as a whole.

The event will be held virtually, and participants will need to connect via Zoom. Simultaneous interpretation will be provided in Spanish, English, and French. Register here!

Background:

In armed conflict, the humanitarian community continues to witness highly disturbing situations where the safety of civilians is ignored or not addressed, or where civilians are purposely targeted by parties to a conflict. While protection services continue to provide much-needed support to vulnerable and marginalized groups and individuals and respond to protection concerns with remedial service provision, limited progress has been made on contributing to civilians’ safety in armed conflict. As Hugo Slim expressed it in the recent Oxford Lecture Series on Protection: “When you look at protection’s track record through wars, protection is at its weakest here, in this challenge in protecting people from physical harm and unlawful devastating attacks on their persons and homes.”

In the last few years, there has been a push by both humanitarian agencies and donors to examine how we can prevent and protect civilians from physical harm during conflict. Key questions remain: what does prevention mean and look like within our protection of civilians programming? Where does civilian safety “fit” within the humanitarian architecture?

There are, however, several existing approaches to mitigate and reduce risk in armed conflict for the civilian population, including how to prevent violence from happening in the first place and how to strengthen civilian self-protection strategies through community-based initiatives. This two-part webinar series aims to provide an overview of the range of strategies currently undertaken by national and international civil society organizations, UN agencies, and donors, providing examples of good practice, and discuss how such efforts can be advanced and systematized in the wider humanitarian community.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org

An NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security Discussion: Spending to Increase Nuclear Danger

Join the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security as we discuss how in the midst of an economic and public health crisis, the US is set to spend hundreds of billions on new nuclear weapons which could never be used, add nothing to national security, and actually increase the risk of nuclear war. Funding for these extremely dangerous weapons systems will come up soon in Congress. The NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace and Security presents three leaders to clarify the key issues and discuss possible plans of action.

Register here!

Speakers:

Bruce Knotts has directed the Unitarian Universalist Office at the United Nations since 2008. Before that, he served as a diplomat with the U.S. Department of State with notable service during the Nairobi Embassy bombing 1998, Embassy Khartoum, Sudan, Regional Refugee Coordinator for West Africa and Deputy Chief of Mission in The Gambia. His final tour was in the Bureau of International Organization at the Department of State.

Dr. John Burroughs is Senior Analyst for the New York City-based Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy. He has represented LCNP in Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty meetings and negotiations on the Treaty to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons. His articles and op-eds have appeared in publications including Fordham International Law Journal, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Arms Control Today, Newsweek, and Newsday.

Jackie Cabasso has been Executive Director of the Western States Legal Foundation, based in Oakland, California, since 1984. In 1995 she was a “founding mother” of the Abolition 2000 Global Network to Eliminate Nuclear Weapons, and she continues to serve on its Coordinating Committee. Since 2007 she has served as an Executive Advisor to Mayors for Peace. In the U.S., she is a National Co-convener of United for Peace and Justice. Jackie was the 2008 recipient of the International Peace Bureau’s Sean MacBride Peace Award.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Peace (Vienna), email its Chair,  Helga Kerschbaum at helga.kerschbaum@aon.at

Intergenerational Dialogue on Gender, Peace and Disarmament

UNFOLD ZEROYouth Fusion and Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament (PNND) cordially invite you to join an inter-generational dialogue on March 8 highlighting the roles of women in the peace, disarmament and security fields, and the importance of including gender approaches to these issues in order to build more effective and sustainable security for all.

The dialogue will be conducted in four mini-panels, each one with a highly experienced woman leader and a youth advocate introducing the sub-topics: Women in disarmament, Shifting security frameworks from nuclear deterrence to common security, Disarmament and sustainability, Nuclear disarmament and a feminist foreign policy, and Nuclear disarmament & grassroots/interfaith action.

The event will also include the launch of the PNND Gender, Peace and Security program, which consolidates and builds upon the work PNND has been doing on gender and nuclear disarmament since their establishment in 2003.

We welcome both women and men to the event. A gender approach is about inclusivity, cooperation and expanding our notions of security. It is not about setting women against, or in competition with, men.

The dialogue will be held by zoom on International Women’s Day, Monday March 8 at 18:30 CET (12:30 Eastern Time USA/Canada). Click here to register.

Speakers

Moderator: Michaela Sorensen (Denmark), UN Youth Association of Denmark. PNND Program Officer on Gender, Peace and Security.

Introduction to the PNND Gender, Peace and Security Program: Vanda Proskova (Czech Republic). Vice-Chair, PragueVision Institute for Sustainable Security. PNND Program Officer on Gender, Peace and Security.

Closing Comments: Alyn Ware (Czech Republic/New Zealand), PNND Global Coordinator.

 

Youth speakers

  • Kehkashan Basu, (UAE/Canada) Founder of Green Hope Foundation, UN Human Rights Champion, Winner of the 2016 International Children’s Peace Prize & Winner of the First-Ever Voices Youth Gorbachev-Shultz Legacy Award for Nuclear Disarmament 
  • Vanessa Lanteigne, (Canada) National Coordinator of Voice of Women, One of the winners in the 2020 UN #75Words4Disarmament Youth Challenge
  • Lejla Hasandedic-Dapo, (Bosnia and Herzegovina) Europe Liaison Officer for United Religions Initiative. Board member of European Interfaith Youth Network
  • Yasmeen Silva, (USA) Partnerships Manager for Beyond the Bomb, Team member of the 2020 Count the Nuclear Weapons Money action in New York
  • Nico Edwards, (Sweden/UK) PNND Gender, Peace and Security Program Officer

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-NY, please visit ngocsw.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For information on the NGO Committee on Peace (Vienna), contact the Chair: Helga Kerschbaum | Pax Romana | helga.kerschbaum@aon.at

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