Each week we recap the posts we have had on social media. This is November 4 – 24.
The World Memory Project
A new international campaign plans to combat xenophobia and genocide by gathering online videos from young people across the globe. The “Exit Xenocide” project involves producing a feature-length film which can be stories, an original artistic creation or a report on a specific topic. The initiative is led by American NGO World Memory Film Project (WMFP), in partnership with the National Human Rights Council (CNDH) and the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO). Read more here.
Your Middle East
Charlie Cooper is starting for YourMiddleEast a blog post series on jihad. According to Cooper, jihad is understood in a very bipolar and inaccurate way. Drawing on Islamic texts as well as historical and political documents, he will consider in each post a different phase in the history of jihad. “Whether we like it or not, jihad has become a regular fixture in today’s media”, says Cooper. “In the current global context, it is imperative that the term is brought even more into the limelight and better discussed. It must be shown, unambiguously, that Islamist violence is based on misinterpretation of religion and not religion itself, as those at either end of the extremist spectrum, the Ayman al-Zawahiris and Pamela Gellers of the world, would have us believe.” Read more here.
Have a look at Aswat Masriya´s chronological summary of #Egypt´s constitutional #transition since the January uprising in 2011 until the current constitutional drafting committee, which is scheduled to finish work within a month. Read more here.
Al Arabiya News
“#Turkey’s journey in joining the #EU resembles a long-term relationship, where she pushes for marriage, but he has no intention of getting down on his knees to propose.” Really interesting opinion piece by Turkish political analyst Ceylan Ozbudak about the relationship between Turkey and the EU, drawing parallels to the clichéd image of a relationship between two people, in which one of them has commitment issues. Following this metaphor, Ozbudak continues with five “commitment factors” between Turkey and the EU based on political events and facts. She finishes with the question: “Will Turkey ever walk down the aisle?” Find her answer here.
A great example of peace journalism: Madeleine Rees writes that without the participation of those who have the greatest stake in preserving peace in their countries, peace agreements don’t work – for example, without the voice of women. Rees draws back to lessons learned from Bosnia and Herzegovina: “So far there is not a great deal to indicate that the approach being taken towards the Syrian crisis is any different from the one in BiH. Whilst the international community takes sides and reduces the narrative yet again to reflect only the warring factions, the voices of those who are advocating peaceful political settlement are ignored. It is all too familiar. Regardless of the outcome of the conflict, the crisis in Syria will leave the State in a long reconstruction period.” Read more here.
What do you think are taboo topics that are not talked of in your society? This article explores one issue that is largely ignored: that of prostitutes and HIV in the MENA region. While sex workers have taken their occupation more often than not because they had no other options, they still face harsh attitudes and harassment, writes Shereen El Feki. According to rough estimates, there are at least 60,000 female sex workers in Morocco alone. Read the article here.
Ibi Ibrahim is a photographer in Yemen. For him, his profession is one of constant struggle and his reality far from that of Western counterparts. “There are no curators here in Sana’a; hell, there are no galleries here either. My living room has become a gallery, and with time, so has my bedroom… at one point, I thought I would invite foreign diplomats and NGO officers living in Sana’a to visit my studio, and try to capitalise on the trend of Westerners supporting Yemeni artists by acquiring their works… All artists struggle, but I am deeply certain that us Yemeni artists struggle in a completely different way.” Read more here.
A series of ads by UN Women, revealed in late October, used the Google Autocomplete feature to uncover widespread negative attitudes toward women. Global Voices followed reactions to the UN Women campaign and conducted its own experiment in different languages. The results of searches conducted both within the UN Women campaign and Global Voices revealed popular attitudes not only about women’s social and professional roles, but also about their sexuality, appearance and relationships with men. Read more here.
Human Rights Watch
“The continued prosecution of human rights defenders directly contradicts Saudi Arabia’s claims of support for human rights and is inconsistent with a presence on the Human Rights Council”. Several human rights activists wrote in their “Joint Letter to King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud on Candidacy for the Human Rights Council” . They are also demanding concrete steps to be taken for the protection of human rights in the kingdom. Read the letter here.
Winter fruits of Tunisia: This photo essay is full of mouthwatering impressions of the Central Market in downtown Tunis. Where do the fruits come from? And even more interesting: Who are the people selling them? See for yourself on Tunisia live.
Your Middle East
As the Syrian conflict rages on, those directly affected by the war are growing ever more impatient about the postponed second round of peace talks, known as Geneva 2, writes Nicholas Bonde. The sarcastic and humorous pictures went viral on social media. One depicts UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon saying: “If we don’t set the issue in the Geneva 2, then we definitely will in Geneva 3 because the third time is the charm.” Read more here.
International Crisis Group
The International Crisis Group issued a new report examining Israel´s national-religious community. According to this brief summary, the national religious have been seen as an obstacle to the peace process, but they and their concerns have been kept out of that process. Robert Blecher, MENA Deputy Program Director states: “The peace process traditionally has done the least to attract those who – whether Israeli or Palestinian – have the most energy and the greatest incentive to undermine it. That is hardly the way to secure a viable, lasting and solid agreement” But what does the report suggest to improve? Read more in the summary and/or download the full report here.
Reporters Without Borders
23 November – International Day to End Impunity
To mark this day, Reporters Without Borders published 10 portraits of journalists and bloggers whose murders have not been solved or have not led to the conviction of their perpetrators. “Acts of violence against journalists and other news providers are attacks not only on the victims themselves but also on freedom of expression, the right to inform and its corollary, the right to receive information,” the organization states. According to statistics, 88 journalists and 47 citizen-jornalists were killed in 2012. The “10 Faces to Remember” try to put names and faces to these statistics. See more here.