Is the aim of reducing cannabis cultivation realistic or beneficial for Morocco? What would it actually mean for the major production area the Rif – one of the poorest, most densely populated and environmentally fragile regions in the country? This briefing will give some historical background, discuss developments in the cannabis market, and highlight environmental and social consequences as well as the recent debate about regulation in Morocco and European policies.
As Ecuador’s new president, Lenin Moreno Garcés, gave his inaugural speech to the National Assembly members, and a number of invited Latin American presidents, an important question is what will change after the ten-year incumbency of his predecessor, Rafael Correa.
Pia Eberhardt describes how corporate lobbies and think tanks have gone on what appears to be a concerted attack against NGOs and other groups opposing new free trade and investment deals, and Corporate Europe Observatory's report Blaming the Messenger
Last year the European Commission announced plans to establish a Multilateral Investment Court (MIC) in its attempt to reform the investment arbitration system, known as ISDS. However, the proposal has received little public scrutiny so far. Now five civil society organisations are organising a public event with international experts to discuss the MIC and examine alternative approaches.
Residents of the Dutch city of Groningen, where gas is being extracted by the Dutch Petroleum Company (NAM), have lost confidence in the company, and in the regulations intended to protect them. Social movements, civil society organisations and local political parties gathered and discussed the dismantling of the NAM and the need to democratise the energy sector.
ERPI is starting a Working Paper series, supported by a limited number of small grants, to allow for the writing up of original research. In parallel they are inviting short contributions in a variety of media that help to map out responses and alternatives. The Initiative will hold a major international conference, bringing this work together, with the aim of thinking together about new directions, both for academic research and practical action.
Across the Standing Rock Reserve, the heartland of the original American Sioux tribe, an oil pipeline is being constructed, threatening access to clean water for many. There is a strong opposition among the residents. In the Netherlands there are also fights against fossil fuel energy, damage to buildings through gas extraction and nuclear power plants. Connect with activists from Standing Rock during a tour across the Netherlands.
The Duterte administration has refused to address and investigate the steep rise in extra-judicial killings, perpetrated by both uniformed personnel and unidentified ‘vigilantes’, whose signature modes of execution belie official claims that the victims fought back.
TNI is proud to welcome Budit in the Netherlands - he spent his youth here as a child refugee with his brother and political refugee parents and returned in his late teens to the Philippines and is now one of the inspiring leaders of a new coalition IDEFEND to counter-act the declining adherence to human rights and the rule of law.
Tripti Tandon from The Laywers Collective answers questions from Frank Barat about the clampdown on freedom of speech and the silencing of critical voices in India and how this is connected to shrinking space worldwide.
Ben Hayes, Frank Barat, Isabelle Geuskens, Nick Buxton, Fiona Dove, Francesco Martone, Hannah Twomey, Semanur Karaman
07 April 2017
Individual and collective activism is facing a global pushback from states, corporations and the Far Right. How useful is the metaphorical concept of ‘shrinking space’ to examine such repression of civic society? This report deconstructs the shrinking space narrative and critiques some of its inherent problems, particularly its conflation with ‘civic space’. Thus a Government can profess support for ‘civic space’ and human rights defender initiatives abroad, while adopting repressive domestic policies and promoting collusion with corporations that contribute to ‘shrinking space’.