Archive for the 'human rights' Category

New Interns for 2008


Gregoria Barbarica Kristina Ritasari
” Ria”


Gregoria Barbarica Kristina Ritasari or Ria is from Indonesia. She is a program coordinator of Solidaritas Nusa Bangsa Foundation (SNB or Homeland Solidarity) a Non-government organization with a vision of realizing a democratic Indonesian society, respecting the value of brotherhood and equality in pluralism. Ria works closely with victims family of racial discrimination.


She feels the need to learn some more and to be in a challenging situation where she can improve her capability as an international human rights worker. She believes that the internship program is an opportunity to manifest her dream and the things she likes to do. Ria is very eager to learn the spirit of democratic movement in Korea and build international network in Asia. She hopes that her internship experience will help her improve her work with the victims’ communities in Indonesia.


Thet Din


Thet Din is the new intern from Cambodia. In 2007 he was a chosen by Khmer Youth Association as a Youth Partners in Development Program (YPD 2007). He joined an exchange program between Cambodia and Sweden that was supported by Swedish Centre for International Youth Exchange, and YPD for a six-month program divided into two three-month phases. First phase in Cambodia, Din worked as a volunteer for Oxfam-Australia for a project in Natural Disaster Management and a lead community educator for Community Development Education. Second phase was conducted in Sweden where he was assigned at International Jönköping University as counselor for an International Development Projects Resource Service for International Project.


He describes himself as modest, happy and most of the time a funny person. Thet says “I would like to see new things and ideas, especially I would like to learn new knowledge and meet all kind of people from everywhere, to become a better person”.

A music enthusiast who likes to sing considers music as part of his life (welcome to Korea’s noraebangs!). At the age of 40 he wants to become a university teacher, so he is preparing for it. And above all, Thet wants to become a core participant in developing his country.

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Accepting Nominations for the Gwangju Prize for Human Rights 2008

Now, on its 8th year, the Gwangju Prize for Human Rights is now open for nomination. Since its inception, this prestigious award has been given to 9 individuals and a Korean organization. In 2006 and 2007 saw co-winners receiving the award. Among the winners include Xanana Gusmao (Timor Leste), Daw Aung San Suu Kyii (Burma), Wardah Hafidz (Indonesia), Malalai Joya (Afghanistan) and Irom Sharmila (India).

For 2008, the prize at stake is US$ 50,000.00, a gold medal and a certificate. The winner will be invited to grace the 2008 Gwangju Prize for Human Rights Award Night on 18 May 2008, in Gwangju, Republic of Korea. This yearly award is sponsored by the May 18 Memorial Foundation.

The Gwangju Prize for Human Rights was established to celebrate the spirit of May 18 Gwangju Democratic Uprising by recognizing both individuals, groups or institutions in Korea and abroad that have contributed in promoting and advancing human rights, democracy and peace in their work. The prize is awarded by the citizens of Gwangju in the spirit of solidarity and gratitude from those whom they have received help in their struggle for democratization. It is hoped that through this award the spirit and message of May 18 will be immortalized in the hearts and mind of humankind.

The Gwangju Prize for Human Rights which is given yearly has the following aims:
1). To enhance the spirit of the May 18 Democratic Uprising by awarding individuals, groups or institutions in Korea and abroad on their contribution to improving human rights and peace throughout the world.
2). To reward individuals, groups and institutions in Korea and/or abroad for promoting the goals of the May 18 Democratic Uprising as a movement toward unification and cooperation.

Deadline for submission of application form is 30 March 2008. Please visit our blogsites for other related information: 518solidarity.blogspot.com and themay18.wordpress.com.

Please download the form from this link:

http://eng.518.org/main.html?TM18MF=B04&bc_table=ENG_NOTICE&form_act=V&bnum=39&page=1

Call for Application – 2008 International Internship Program

Dear friends and partners:

Greetings! Please find below our call for application for the 2008 International Internship Program. Please help us disseminate the information.

Thank you and good wishes,
International Cooperation Team
518interns@gmail.com

CALL FOR APPLICATION
THE MAY 18 MEMORIAL FOUNDATION
INTERNATIONAL INTERNSHIP PROGRAM

The May 18 Memorial Foundation was founded by Gwangju citizens, sympathetic overseas Koreans, and from individuals who sacrificed and got indemnification from the government. It was created on August 30, 1994 by people who believe it’s important to keep the ideas and memories of the 1980 May 18 Gwangju Democratic Uprising alive and remembered.

The International Internship Program on Human Rights is a program of the Foundation created to contribute in the development of democracy and human rights throughout Asia. It is also an opportunity for interns to learn and experience the history and process of the development of human rights and democracy in South Korea. Specifically the purpose and aim of the program are the following: 1) To improve international solidarity and networking and 2) To promote Gwangju as Asia’s Hub for Human Rights Movement.

The Foundation is looking for two interns who will serve for 10 months from March-December 2008. Applicants female or male should not be more than 25 years of age, with a minimum of 3 years NGO or social development work experience on the issues of human rights, democracy and peace. Must be proficient in English and working knowledge of Korean is an advantage. Must be computer literate (email/internet, blog/web page, lay-out/design, etc).

Living allowance will be provided to successful interns. Housing will be provided for free but utilities (telephone/internet, electricity, and gas) will be paid for by interns. The Foundation will pay for the round trip airfare of interns.

Please download the application form if you are interested to apply from any of these links/sites:

http://eng.518.org/main.html?TM18MF=B04&bc_table=ENG_NOTICE&form_act=V&bnum=38&page=1

https://themay18.wordpress.com/2007/12/18/call-for-application-2008-international-internship-program/

Deadline of application is on 15 January 2008. Short listed applicants will be emailed for an online/webcam interview through Skype or Yahoo messenger.

Visit our blogsite archive to learn more about the internship program – 518interns.blogspot.com

Call for Application – 2008 International Internship Program

Dear friends and partners:

Greetings! Please find below our call for application for the 2008 International Internship Program. Please help us disseminate the information.

Thank you and good wishes,
International Cooperation Team
518interns@gmail.com

CALL FOR APPLICATION
THE MAY 18 MEMORIAL FOUNDATION
INTERNATIONAL INTERNSHIP PROGRAM

The May 18 Memorial Foundation was founded by Gwangju citizens, sympathetic overseas Koreans, and from individuals who sacrificed and got indemnification from the government. It was created on August 30, 1994 by people who believe it’s important to keep the ideas and memories of the 1980 May 18 Gwangju Democratic Uprising alive and remembered.

The International Internship Program on Human Rights is a program of the Foundation created to contribute in the development of democracy and human rights throughout Asia. It is also an opportunity for interns to learn and experience the history and process of the development of human rights and democracy in South Korea. Specifically the purpose and aim of the program are the following: 1) To improve international solidarity and networking and 2) To promote Gwangju as Asia’s Hub for Human Rights Movement.

The Foundation is looking for two interns who will serve for 10 months from March-December 2008. Applicants female or male should not be more than 25 years of age, with a minimum of 3 years NGO or social development work experience on the issues of human rights, democracy and peace. Must be proficient in English and working knowledge of Korean is an advantage. Must be computer literate (email/internet, blog/web page, lay-out/design, etc).

Living allowance will be provided to successful interns. Housing will be provided for free but utilities (telephone/internet, electricity, and gas) will be paid for by interns. The Foundation will pay for the round trip airfare of interns.

Please download the application form if you are interested to apply from any of these links/sites:

http://eng.518.org/main.html?TM18MF=B04&bc_table=ENG_NOTICE&form_act=V&bnum=38&page=1


https://themay18.wordpress.com/2007/12/18/call-for-application-2008-international-internship-program/

Deadline of application is on 15 January 2008. Short listed applicants will be emailed for an online/webcam interview through Skype or Yahoo messenger.

Visit our blogsite archive to learn more about the internship program – 518interns.blogspot.com

Opening Remarks of Hongkil Lee 518 Chairperson

It is the opening day of the May 18 Memorial Foundation’s 2007 Gwangju Asian Human Rights Folk School. Below is the opening speech, both in Korean and English translation of Hongkil Lee Chairperson of the Foundation.

2007 광주아시아인권학교 입학식 환영사

먼저 2007년 광주아시아인권학교에 참가한 14개국 스물네분의 아시아지역 인권 활동가와 지도자 여러분을 진심으로 환영하는 바입니다. 그리고 바쁘신 가운데에서도 오늘 입학식에 참여해 주신 내빈 여러분께도 감사드립니다. 민주화의 도시 광주에서 이렇게 여러분을 직접 만나게 되어 반갑습니다.【통역】

First of all, we would like to welcome all the Asian Humans Rights activists from 12 countries. We also would like to show our appreciation for all the guests who are here for the opening ceremony. We are very pleased to see you all here in Gwangju, the sacred place of democracy.

지난 2004년 처음으로 개최되었던 광주아시아인권학교는 이제 아시아인권교육의 중요한 프로그램으로 자리 잡고 있습니다. 지난 2000년부터 시작된 우리재단의 국제사업이 인권학교를 통해 그 결실을 맺고 있는 것 같아 매우 기쁘게 생각합니다.【통역】

Gwangju Asian Human Rights Folk School, which has been held in year 2004, has been recognized as one of the significant Human Rights trainning programme. I am very glad to hold the Gwangju Asian Human Rights Folk School as a activity of the International Cooperation Programmes since year 2000.

그러나 광주아시아인권학교가 높은 관심을 받고 있다는 것은 다시 말해서 더 많은 요구와 기대를 받고 있다는 뜻이라는 것을 잘 알고 있으며, 우리재단은 그동안 제시되었던 다양한 요구와 미진한 점을 보완하고 개선해 왔습니다. 한편 무엇보다도 광주아시아인권학교를 통해 다녀간 적지 않은 수의 아시아 인권활동가들이 광주와 오월정신의 전도사가 되어 민주주의와 인권발전에 의미 있는 협력자가 되었다는 사실은 더 없이 소중한 인권학교의 성과입니다.【통역】

We fully recognize that more attention to the Gwangju Asian Human Rights Folk School should be improved, so we are trying to accommodate various demand and recommendations to improve it. Meanwhile, it is very inspiring that many of the participants of the Gwangju Asian Human Rights Folk School become our fellows and ambassadors of Gwangju and the spirit of the May 18 Democratic Uprising.

광주아시아인권학교 참가자 여러분과 내빈 여러분.【통역】

Ladies and Gentlemen for 2007 Gwangju Asian Human Rights Folk School,

아직도 많은 분들은 국내민주화를 완성하지 못한 처지에서 해외 인권과 민주주의에 대해 연대 사업을 진행하는 것에 대해 마뜩찮게 생각하기도 합니다. 그러나 5․18기념재단이 추진해온 아시아 지역의 민주주의와 인권과 관련한 연대와 교육 사업은 우리 사회의 민주주의를 완성시켜가는 또 다른 길이라 생각합니다. 우리 이웃의 인권과 민주주의 발전 없이 우리의 인권과 민주주의가 성장할 것이라고 믿는 사람은 아무도 없기 때문입니다.【통역】

There are still some people who disagree to carry out international cooperation programmes, because they consider we have not fully achieve Human Rights and Democracy in Korea. However, we are very sure all programmes for international cooperation of the May 18 Memorial Foundation in the field of Democracy and Human Rights is the proper way to acheive the democracy in our society. Because there is nobody who believe the possibility of development of our Democracy and Human Rights without those of our neigborhood.

이곳 광주까지 기쁜 마음으로 참가해 주신 아시아의 인권활동가들이 광주아시아인권학교를 통해 광주와 아시아를 잇고, 지역과 지역을 이해하며, 서로의 차이를 존중하는 소중한 시간이 되길 기대합니다.【통역】

I fully desire all of you to play a significant role as a bridge between Gwangju and Asia, and understand different communities and respect our differences.

다시 한 번 광주아시아인권학교 참가를 환영하면서 끝으로 오늘 광주아시아인권학교가 개최되기까지 수고해 주신 국제사업위원회 여러분께 감사의 인사를 드립니다. 감사합니다.【통역】

Once again, with my sincere heart I welcome to 2007 Gwangju Asian Human Rights Folk School. Finally, we appreciate you and all the international committee members who have paved the way for the 2007 Gwangju Asian Human Rights Folk School.

Thank you very much.

Raghuvansi and Sharmila Co-winners of Gwangju Prize for Human Rights

Press Release
New Delhi, May 7, 2007

It is tenth anniversary of Declaration on the Right and Responsibility of Individuals, Groups and Organs of Society to Promote and Protect Universally Recognized Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, under Human Rights Council. UN General Assembly Reaffirming the importance of the observance of the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations for the promotion and protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms for all persons in all countries of the world. By acknowledging this UN General Assembly, stressed that all members of the international community shall fulfill, jointly and separately, their solemn obligation to promote and encourage respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms for all without distinction of any kind, including distinctions based on race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status, to fulfill the charter.

Therefore, recognizing the work of Dr. Lenin Raghuvansi and Ms. Irom Sharmila who have been human rights defenders in their respective filled have been awarded the prestigious Gwangju Prize for Human Rights 2007 by the citizens of Gwangju.

The Gwangju Prize for Human Rights was established to celebrate the spirit of the May 18 Gwangju Uprising by recognizing both individuals, groups or institutions in Korea and abroad that have contributed in promoting and advancing human rights, democracy and peace in their work. The prize is awarded by the citizens of Gwangju in the spirit of solidarity and gratitude from those whom they have received help in their struggle for democratization and search for truth. It is hoped that through this award the spirit and message of the May 18 will be immortalized in the hearts and mind of humankind.

The Gwangju Prize for Human Rights which is given yearly has the following aims: 1) to enhance the spirit of the May 18 Democratic Uprising by awarding individuals, groups or institutions in Korea and abroad on their contribution to improving human rights and peace throughout the world; and 2) to reward individuals, groups and institutions in Korea and/or abroad for promoting the goals of the May 18 Democratic Uprising as a movement toward unification and cooperation.

While addressing the press conference Dr Syada Hameed, Member of Planning Commission, stressed that the present 11 th five year plan has mainly focused equitable plan to North East region, dalits and minorities. Also she mentioned as long as task force presence continues in the North East there will be an obstacle in the development.

Ms. Anni Raja, General Secretary, National Federation of Indian Women, speaking at the conference, said that Sharmila’s heroic struggle is a mark in women’s movement. The amount of armed violence by the armed forces has pushed the women to come out to disrobe themselves in the public places. Atrocities by the armed forces have been increasingly deployed in every pockets of the country to curb the human rights struggle where many innocents’ people are victim of armed forces. By congratulating Dr. Lenin’s struggle in UP towards right to food campaign, Ms. Raja stated that the campaign has spread from state to national level.

Dr. Lenin speaking on the occasion spoke on the importance of Gwanju Award for Human Rights was established to marked the spirit of the Gwanju uprising in May 18, 1980, over 200 people were killed where the people in that South Korean city rebelled against military rule and demanded establishment of democracy.

Ms. Preeti Verma spoke this award pave the way to create more opportunities to fight against inequalities not only in NE elsewhere also.

1. I rom Sharmila Chanu, An activist from Manipur, who is protesting the killing of 10 innocent people in Nov’ 2000 by the Army in Malom, Manipur, has become synonymous with the agitation against the Armed Forced Special Powers Act (AFSPA). T he Act gives draconian powers to the security forces and has repeatedly been used with brazen brutality in the Northeast and Jammu & Kashmir , the trauma and evil consequences brought about by the infamous Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act 1958 were recounted by the victims of the Act. Currently she has been arrested and strictly detained under section 309 of Indian Penal Code (attempted to commit suicide) in the hospitals of Manipur and Delhi for the past six years. In fact it is 2375 days till today she is on her hunger strike. She has remained without solid food since then, demanding withdrawal from her state, of one of the most draconian laws in the statue books called Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA). Irom Sharmila Chanu is one of the most extraordinary examples of civil courage from the conflict areas of North East India in recent years. She has become an important symbol in the struggle against oppression. She has refused to give up on her belief that not guns but peaceful protest will make the nation engage with the Northeast’s plight. In awarding the Gwangju Prize for Human Rights, 2007, Korea to Irom Sharmila Chanu is an honour for woman for her unflagging efforts and to show its support for the many people throughout the world who are striving to attain democracy, human rights and ethnic conciliation by peaceful means.

2. Dr. Lenin Raghavarshi is a social activist based in Beneras, Uttar Pradesh, working towards the elimination of caste system particularly on Dalit issues. He is also vociferously campaign against the torture and right to food. Dr. Lenin Raghuvanshi and the People’s Vigilance Committee On Human Rights, (PVCHR) led by him, have put up vehement resistance against the caste system through various social activities, including the supporting of torture victims in five Northern States with 50,000 members participating, and the operation of education centers in 45 provinces for the numerous number of local children. This organization has developed into a nationwide and worldwide network composed of legal experts, journalists, human rights advocacy groups, etc. Also, its leader has brought hope back to the minds of more than 3,500 bonded child laborers and those suffering human rights infringements prompted by the caste system, especially to the untouchables.

Many Thanks
Sunila Singh , National Program Officer, Preventing Torture in India
M- 9910272509/9871080731
E-mail – suni_manas@hotmail.com

Kshetrimayum Onil, Coordinator, Reachout
M- 9818781767
Email – onilrights@gmail.com


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