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Human Rights (111)

Paul Kagame has been re-elected as president of Rwanda – a position he has held since 2000.
Sonke Gender Justice and SAIIA researchers Matebe Chisiza and Yarik Turianskyi explore how Rwanda has managed to be the world’s leading example in terms of female representation in politics.
On 24 March, the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued its first order awarding financial compensation – on an individual basis – to the victims of the Bogoro village attack in 2003 in the Ituri district of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The court sentenced Former Congolese warlord Germain Katanga in March 2014 to 12 years in prison (later reduced to eight years), on four counts of war crimes and one count of crimes against humanity for these atrocities. Breaking new ground, a symbolic compensation of $250 has been awarded to each of the 297 identified victims of those…
With the passing of struggle stalwart Ahmed “Uncle Kathy” Kathrada this week, we are freshly reminded of his legacy in the anti-apartheid movement as well as that of other struggle heroes who fought for freedom. Among them are ANC President Oliver Reginald Tambo and Steve Bantu Biko, the liberation activist murdered by security police 40 years ago, both of whom were commemorated on human rights day last month.
SAIIA Policy Insights No 41, March 2017
The South African Institute of International Affairs and the Global Challenges Foundation cordially invite you to Africa’s Role in Governing Global Risks: Emerging Voices from the Continent.
The recurring xenophobic violence is no new matter in South Africa. In 2006 an assessment on South Africa's state of democracy by the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), urged the government to address the perception that migrant workers are unfair competition for locals.
In February 2015, South Africa experienced an upsurge of xenophobic attacks throughout the country.  In response to this horrendous act, SAIIA Chief Executive, Elizabeth Sidiropoulos, wrote this article and former senior researcher Tjiurimo Hengari wrote a related paper on the subject ‘Xenophobia Trivialises South Africa’s Ambitious Africa Policy’. Earlier this week the violent acts flared up again in Pretoria West. The institute again calls for an end to the violence and the stereotyping of certain groups as more crime-prone than others. South Africa must address the ‘demon’ of xenophobia and violence once and for all if it is to remain…
Tanzania’s current legal framework has failed to address women’s rights and gender equality due to the prolonged and continued existence of forced child marriages, killings of elderly women, female genital mutilation and limited access to reproductive health services. Is the proposed new constitution likely to do a better job at protecting and promoting women’s rights in Tanzania?
South Africans woke up on the morning of 21 October 2016 to the shocking announcement that the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana Mashabane, had submitted an instrument of withdrawal from the Rome Statute to the UN Secretary General in New York, two days before. This notification signals South Africa’s intention to withdraw from the Statute that established the International Criminal Court (ICC) in a year’s time.
The Zimbabwean state has provided some of the biggest lessons in humility for political analysts in this century. Its government, headed by the indomitable Robert Mugabe, has failed to ‘definitively fail’ despite every warning since ZANU-PF war veterans began the land invasions that prompted the first wave of crisis in that country in 2001.
SAIIA Policy Briefing 150, July 2016
The 32nd Ordinary Session of the African Union (AU) opened on Sunday in Kigali, Rwanda. This year’s summit runs throughout this week and takes place under the theme, ‘A Year of Human Rights, with Special Focus on the Rights of Women’.  When the AU was established in 2002, it created numerous opportunities for an ambitious democracy and human rights agenda in the foreign and continental policies of African states.
Nearly 26 years after he was forced out of power, former Chadian president Hissène Habré has been found guilty of crimes against humanity, torture (including sexual violence) and crimes of war committed under his rule from 1982 to 1990. He has been condemned to life imprisonment by the judges of the Extraordinary African Chambers (EACs), a court specially created by Senegal upon the request of the African Union (AU). This was the first trial of its kind on the continent and years of lobbying were necessary to convince the AU and Senegal to proceed with it. In pushing Africa to…
Looking back at the events of Europe’s migrant and refugee crisis in 2015, it is tempting to quote Dickens: ‘It was the best of times, it was the worst of times’. Last summer, as large numbers of refugees, the majority fleeing Syria’s civil war, began to cross the Aegean Sea from Turkey to the Greek islands nestling near its shores, the European Union (EU) woke up to a refugee crisis on its own soil. The EU’s response, collectively and – more frequently – individually, was panicked, improvised and uncoordinated, driven by a mix of compassion and hostility.
Speaking in February at the annual council meeting of the South African Institute of International Affairs, I expressed my fear that the constitutional compact of the last 20 years seemed dull and rudderless today, and that our constitutional democracy was increasingly being undermined by corruption and lack of political accountability.
Human Rights Day celebrates a precious proposition: each individual is a full member of society, with entitlements to opinion and behaviour that cannot be denied. It speaks directly to the ideal of human and civic freedom. For many people in South Africa and the continent at large, this is intimately linked to conceptions of democracy.
SAIIA Research Report No 22, February 2016 Download - English Governance and APRM Programme Africa’s turn to electoral democracy over the past three decades has rightly been hailed as a significant achievement, but it has not rid the continent of restrictive and authoritarian governance impulses. This report attempts to interrogate the concept of ‘freedom’ and how it is faring in Africa. To do so, it conceptualises freedom in terms of ‘constitutional liberalism’, and discusses this conceptualisation in relation to two broad themes: constitutionalism and civil liberties.
SAIIA's Western Cape Branch cordially invites you to a public seminar addressed by Professor The Honorable Gareth Evans, Former Australian Foreign Minister, on 'The Responsibility to Protect against Mass Atrocity Crimes: 10 Years On.'
SAIIA, in collaboration with the Australian High Commission, invite you to a seminar to be addressed by Professor The Honourable Gareth Evans AC QC Former Australian Foreign Minister, on 'Responsibility to Protect: Ten Years On'.
It’s that time of the year again: the month that marks 16 days of activism against gender-based violence. Familiar terms again dominate the discourse: violence against women, gender-based violence, sexual violence, intimate partner violence and domestic violence.
Ahead of the annual 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign (25 November - 10 December), Ugandan human rights lawyer Laura Nyirinkindi paid a visit to SAIIA. Nyirinkindi has been working on combating violence against women in Africa for the last ten years.
On 26 October 2015, SAIIA is holding a Roundtable Discussion on ‘Gender and Governance in Africa: Findings from 16 countries’.
Today, 5 October 2015, South African authorities are expected to submit their reasons for failing to arrest Sudanese President Al-Bashir when he attended the African Union Summit in June 2015. The furore that erupted has fuelled concerns about the place of human rights in South Africa’s foreign policy and highlights the importance for us to consider the nuances of the country’s foreign policy.
If tabloid headlines are anything to go by, the United Kingdom is fighting off the greatest invasion force threatening the island since the Blitz. The invaders this time are migrants and asylum seekers sneaking a ride on lorries, trains and ferries to get across – or underneath – the English Channel.
The South African Journal of International Affairs invites article submissions and special issue proposals for our forthcoming volumes. Prospective authors may submit their articles via the SAJIA Scholar One website, detailed below. Prospective guest editors are encouraged to contact the Editor, Dr Martha Bridgman, at sajia.editor@saiia.org.za, with a concept note outlining the themed issue and proposed dates. 
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