Hivos International

Freedom of Expression

Cities will dominate the landscape of the future. UN projections indicate that 75 percent of the world’s population will be living in cities by 2050. Africa, in particular, will change from a continent of states to a continent of cities.

Syrian Hivos partner executed three years after his detention

Last week, Bassel’s wife and closest family members announced his death was officially confirmed by the Assad regime. For me and his other friends this was extremely sad to hear, although after two years without any news about or from him, the chances he was still alive were minimal.

Over these last couple of months, Latin America has been vibrating and changing: we’ve gone from celebration to mourning, from anger to relief in a matter of days. Just one month ago, we awoke to the news of a murder attempt against our friend David Valle, LGBTI community leader in Honduras and member of Somos CDC, a partner organization of Hivos.

Last week, I spent time in spaces that I really liked. Mainly because we were discussing issues that are very dear to me but also getting to interact with some of the most inspiring people within the human rights movement globally.

For El Salvador it was not easy. In the process, five people were killed and one of them tortured. Community leaders lived under threat for years. However, a few weeks ago, our country became the first in Latin America to put a ban on metal mining in all its forms. For a nation as small and impoverished as ours, to make this sovereign decision against the interests of a powerful transnational company is an unprecedented event that we consider a triumph of community work.

Last week we brought together 21 Central American human rights defenders in San José, Costa Rica. We formed Nexus and are now getting stronger every day.

I am Angélica Choc, a Maya-Q'eqchi ' nativehuman rights defender and defender of El Estor community of the Izabal Department in Guatemala.

Hivos Director of Operations Sanne Nolst Trenité toured a number of Hivos projects and partners in Indonesia at the end of April until early of May this year. For staff at Hivos Southeast Asia, her visit provided opportunities to meet her and discuss developments important to Hivos with her. Interaction, engagement, inspiration, acceleration and support were recurring themes throughout her visit.

Human rights should be considered proportionally in any governmental policy related to the Internet in a way that will hopefully spur the private sector to follow.

Hivos Southern Africa will be hosting a brainstorming workshop on the state of creative hubs in Southern Africa on April 11, 2017 at Moto Republik in Harare, Zimbabwe. The aim of the Creative Hub ThinkTank is inform Hivos Southern Africa's work with regional cretaive hubs going forward.

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