Archive for the Coming events (UK) Category
Conference 'Central America: Challenged transition?'
14th & 15th June 2007
The Institute for the Study of the Americas, University of London in association with
the University of Glasgow and Chatham House
The Society for Latin American Studies
IALS, University of London, 17 Russell Square London WC1B 5DR
2007 is a year of historic milestones for Central America, with the fifteenth anniversary of the signing of peace accords in El Salvador coinciding with a decade of transition in Guatemala.
Although the media spotlight has been off the region in recent years, its countries remain important sites of comparative interest. In particular, the negotiated peace processes of Guatemala and El Salvador created an historic precedent for democratic transition from violent civil conflict. The success of the regional democratic project has, however, come under scrutiny in recent years. Present-day indices of violent crime and homicide are amongst the highest in the world, and repressive criminal justice strategies have gone some way towards reversing the demilitarisation of the immediate post-war period.
National economies are meanwhile increasingly dependent on migrants, with around 17% of El Salvador's GNP presently coming from remesas. The 'importation and exportation' of gang violence to and from the US has also brought a new and explosive dimension to the question of migration. The challenges of regional integration in such a context are considerable, and yet initiatives in free trade areas and the free circulation of the region's goods and people may have lessons for other integration initiatives.
This conference will explore the major challenges facing the region's governments and citizens today. It will identify and analyse how processes of transition shaped the region's political, social and landscape, asking to what extent historic cleavages have been addressed by the peace and transition processes and what lessons other regions might draw from Central America's recent experience.
This salsa evening Saturday 5th May at 8pm in Theatr Clwyd organised by the Clwyd Latin America Human Rights Group is to raise funds for the Movimiento Nacional por los Derechos Humanos (MNDH) in Guatemala. In February the MNDH suffered a number of intimidations reported by Amnesty International, including a break in at their offices (picture below).
If you`re interested in finding out more information about this fundraiser event, you can phone 01352 740 642 or 01244 531 702.
We've just received news of the upcoming events at the Guatemalan Maya Centre here in London (thanks Jamie!):
SPRING & SUMMER EVENTS 2007
ONGOING EXHIBITION: CHICHICASTENAGO: LIFE & DRESS: A selection of daily and ceremonial textiles from the QuichÃ© Maya town of Chichicastenango (until end of April*) Guatemala. The display includes both antique and contemporary textiles
Thursday 22nd March 19:00 – 20:00 FILM: CODE OF THE MAYA KINGS: A National Geographic funded video documentary examining how it took more than a century to unlock the secrets of the ancient Maya. Includes material on the life and work of reknowned Mayanist Tatiana Proskouriakoff. (Produced & directed by Graham Townsley & Ann Carroll).
Saturday 19th May 10:00 – 18:00 NEW EXHIBITION: TODOS SANTOS & THE TIERRA FRIA: CHANGING TRADITIONS IN HUEHUETENANGO. An exhibition bringing together a selection of textiles from the Mam, Chuj and Q'anjobal and communities of the northwestern highlands, depicting scenes of daily and ceremonial life.
Thursday 7th June 18:30 – 20:00 LECTURE (& FILM): SHAMANS, WITCHES & MAYA PRIESTS. With the publication of her book of the same title, Krystyna Deuss presents an illustrated lecture on native religion and ritual in highland. Organised as a part of the Native Spirit Festival, this event will be preceded by a short (18 minute) film, Atltzatzilistli/ Praying for Water, by an indigenous Mexican filmmaker. This event will take place at the Instituto Cervantes, 102 Eaton Square, London SW1W.
Tuesday 17th July 19:00 – 20:00 TEXTILE STUDY EVENING: GUATEMALAN MAYA COSTUME. An informal look at the current textile exhibition: Todos Santos & The Tierra Fria, and hands on discussion of a selection of Maya textiles with Jamie Marshall, Curator of the Centre's textile collection.
OPEN: Tuesday & Thursday 14:00 – 18:00; Saturday 10:00 – 18:00
*CLOSED: In January, August and either side of Easter (April 3rd-24th inclusive)
Nearest Underground: Fulham Broadway (District Line)
Entrance to the exhibition galleries and craft shop is FREE. Use of reference library, videos & textiles: £5 annual membership
Unless otherwise stated all events are at the Guatemalan Maya Centre
A suggested £1 donation towards the cost of purchasing new videos is requested at video showings; admission to Centre talks / lectures: £2
For more information visit our website: http://www.maya.org.uk. Please contact us in September for an Autumn & Winter Events Sheet at 94 Wandsworth Bridge Road, London SW6 2TF Tel/Fax: 020 7371 5291
We've heard that Amnesty International is planning a series of events as part of the culmination of the campaign against violence against women in early May (probably 1st-13th). We'll be able to confirm this and give more details about the events themselves which should involve a speaker from Guatemala soon.
Wednesday, 6th December- food at 6.30pm, talk at 7.30pm (CafÃ© prices apply)
Venue: La Ruca, Gloucester Road, Bristol
Meet Guillermo Chen, director of the FundaciÃ²n Nueva Esperanza, Guatemala
On the 10th anniversary of peace in Guatemala, Guillermo Chen, director of the FundaciÃ²n Nueva Esperanza talks about how an inspiring cultural education project is giving hope to the continuing struggle for justice, indigenous rights and identity in Guatemala.
˜Education for indigenous children is the only way to combat intolerance, build a lasting peace and improve quality of life for our communities’
This December marks the 10th anniversary of the signing of Peace in Guatemala. The 1996 peace accords brought an end to a bloody 36-year conflict, in which 200,000 people, (the majority indigenous Mayans) died or ˜disappeared’.
The peace accords set out a framework for transforming Guatemalan society through principles of democracy, equality and respect. The reality is that the government has made little progress. Violence and human rights abuses in Guatemala are rife and the justice system is incompetent. Inequalities of land distribution, wealth and access to education are increasing.
Progress has been left to the inspiring and courageous work of civil society organisations.
The FundaciÃ²n Nueva Esperanza is one such organisation. It has developed a unique philosophy to educate children of Mayan Achi descent to participate and contribute to society whilst maintaining their threatened language, traditions and cultural values.
Ffi; Contact Stuart on 07791 034138
Voluntary donations requested
You are invited to an evening of inspiring conversation with guest speakers on Tuesday 5th December at 7-9pm at Latin American House Association, Priory House, Kingsgate Place, London, NW6 4TA.
* Guillermo Chen, Director of the FundaciÃ³n Nueva Esperanza, which provides bilingual education (Spanish and Maya Achi) in Rabinal, Guatemala.
* Jules Wilkinson, Guatemala Solidarity Network
* Carol Herbert, mother of two adopted children from Guatemala, who would like to propose the creation of a young persons group in the UK for children eight years old and over of Guatemalan birth
Refreshments will be provided – older children are welcome.
For further details contact: Carol Herbert carolinah61 [at] hotmail.com or 020 8209 1078.
This is just a quick heads up about the Human Rights Watch Film Festival which is co-presenting three films with Discovering Latin America Film Festival between 23 November and 3 December:
* Innocent Voices by Luis Mandoki (Feature film, Mexico 2004) – Actually about El Salvador
* What is it Worth? by Sergio Bianchi (Feature film, Brazil 2005)
Detail and showing times are below.
Visit www.discoveringlatinamerica.org for full details.
Congratulations to Dominga Vasquez (Guatemalan women's rights activist with FUNDAMAYA) and Helen Woodcock (Peace Brigade's international UK volunteer) who have won the International Service Award for the Defence of the Human Rights of Women.
They have won the award jointly with Nizaam (Cookie) Edwards, Provincial Coordinator of the KZN Network on Violence Against Women and Intersect Coalitions in South Africa.
These are the treacherous conditions in which Dominga Vasquez works to promote the rights of women and indigenous people. Public appreciation of her hard work was recognized when she was elected as the first female Indigenous Mayor of Solola. When performing her Mayoral duties, Dominga applies Mayan vision and traditional approaches to conflict-resolution in order to bring peace and unity to Guatemala to improve the lives of women there.
PBI began accompanying Dominga in her efforts in February 2005 and it was through this partnership that she met Helen Woodcock. As part of the PBI team, Helen provides an international protective accompaniment to Dominga, putting her own personal safety at risk. The physical presence and support of international volunteers such as Helen empowers human rights activists to defend their rights without fear of violence or reprisals. Peace Brigades International nominated this brave partnership for the award.”
In April 2005 Amnesty International issued an urgent action after there was grave concern for Dominga Vasquez's life. FUNDAMAYA forms part of the coalition Frente Nacional contra la Mineria, National Front against Mining, which campaigns to raise awareness of the potential environmental damage caused by mining and the negative impact on indigenous communities living close to mines. Carlos Humberto Guarquez who also received death threats, is FUNDAMAYA's representative to the coalition.
Women human rights defenders under attack: 25 years of fighting to defend human rights
Amnesty International UK and Peace Brigades International will be celebrating Peace Brigades International's 25th anniversary at an event dedicated to the work of women human rights defenders, and the central role they play in the struggle for human rights and justice.
Dominga Vasquez will be talking at the event; along with Kopila Adhikari who works for Advocacy Forum against illegal detention and extra-judicial killings, in Kathmandu, Nepal; and Berenice Celeyta, is president of Nomadesc (Association for Social Research and Action); a non-governmental organisation dedicated to working with marginalised and oppressed communities in Colombia.
The event will be held on: 6th December, 6.00pm at Human Rights Action Centre, 17 – 25 New Inn Yard, London EC2A 3EA. Entry is free and you can book from AI UK's website.
UPDATE – Event confirmed in Manchester:
Human rights award acknowledges work of Indigenous Guatemalan woman and Manchester human rights defender.
Saturday 9th December 2006 (12.00 – 1.30pm) at: The Friends Meeting House, Mount Street (Behind Central Library).
Accused of terrorism during a campaign to raise awareness about the rights of Indigenous communities, Guatemalan Human Rights activist Dominga Vasquez is also the first woman in 500 years to hold the position of Indigenous Mayoress. She is visiting the UK to collect the International Service Human Rights award.
Hear this hugely inspirational woman, who, in the face of death threats, intimidation and racism, continues her work for justice and human rights in Guatemala. Don't miss the chance both to hear Dominga speak and to welcome this amazing woman to Manchester. Speaking with Dominga will be Helen Woodcock, Manchester resident and joint recipient of the International Service prize, who has recently spent over a year in Guatemala with Peace Brigades International, providing accompaniment for Dominga and other workers for human rights and social and environmental justice threatened with violence as a result of their work.
This conference will be held on: Saturday 2nd December 2006 from 9:30 am. to 5:00 pm at Congress House, Great Russell Street, London WC1
This major conference brings together trade unionists, academics, NGOs and progressive movements from Latin America and the UK to explore the exciting political and social developments across the region, featuring films, music and discussion.
Guest speakers include: Harold Pinter, Tariq Ali, Wayne Smith, Victoria Brittain, Colin Burgon MP, plus key note speakers from Cuba, Venezuela, Colombia and Bolivia, as Cesar Navarro or Aida Avella.
The conference will explore the effects of US policy on the region and the current wave of progressive changes most notably seen in Venezuela and Bolivia.
Wayne Smith is a key commentator on US policy in the region having spent 25 years working for the State Department. During this time he worked as Head of the US Interests Section in Havana. He will bring a unique US voice at this important stage in the history of the Americas.
Cost: £10/£6 unwaged (advance registration only – call CSC 020 7263 6452 or Justice for Colombia 020 7435 7241)
More info contact CSC: 020 7263 6452 or see website: Events
The conference is supported by Cuba Solidarity Campaign, Venezuela Information Centre, Justice for Colombia, War on Want, Latin America Bureau, T&G Latin America Workers’ Association, One World Action, Noticias Latin America, Nicaragua Solidarity Campaign, Central American Women’s Network, Latin American Elderly Project, Caribbean Labour Solidarity, Liberation, Movimientos, GMB, Amicus