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The London summit this week could kick-start the revival of the stalled reform process in the region – but won’t if human rights and the rule of law stay off the agenda

  Western Balkan and European Union leaders meet in London this week for a summit that could be a chance to revive stalled reforms and focus attention on critical issues. Unfortunately, there is every chance it will turn out to be full of hot…
Migrants are seen in front of a dorm destroyed during Bosnian 1992-1995 war, in Bihac, Bosnia and Herzegovina May 11, 2018.
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Defending against right-wing populism requires standing up for democratic values

It has been a bad few weeks for the populists and others who attack human rights. Emmanuel Macron trounced Marine Le Pen in the presidential elections, then his party collected a parliamentary majority of 350 seats against her National…
British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron attend the EU summit in Brussels, Belgium, June 22, 2017.
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My country feels unmoored since the EU referendum decision. Prime Minister David Cameron has announced his resignation, the main political parties are internally divided, the markets volatile. What will happen next is unclear and people are anxious about…
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“Maria,” a Ugandan worker, paid $400 in 2013 to an agency in the United Arab Emirates that promised her a job in a mall in Dubai. Instead, the agency placed her as a domestic worker with half the salary she had been promised. Maria told me that her…
A female employer and her children are accompanied by their domestic worker, back right, as they walk through The Avenues, an indoor luxury shopping center in Kuwait City.
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The systems of surveillance that Edward Snowden revealed in both the UK and US depend on law for their justification, and are facing legal challenges in both countries’ legislatures. This might give the impression that, whatever the merits of these…
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This week, British MPs face a simple choice. They must decide if it is right that a woman who flees abuse should become an undocumented migrant just because she runs away. Women like Joycelyn, a young Filipino mother who was brought to London from the…
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It’s been a year now since Edward Snowden’s revelations about the massive US and UK spying operations sent much of the world into a tailspin. The US has taken some modest steps toward reform. But the initial steps taken across the Atlantic only serve to…
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Imagine the following scenario. A young man is arrested by security forces during a street protest. A few days later Ali Saqer dies in custody, his body covered in "blunt force contusions". Two security officers are convicted to ten years in prison for…
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Wealthy families who come to the UK may bring with them domestic workers who work for them in their home country – often women who raise their children, clean their homes and cook their meals. In a move to cut down on immigration, two years ago the UK…
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Allegations of mass, indiscriminate government surveillance have sparked a global spat about its proper limits. In defending their programs, the United States and Britain have exposed a troubling, two-tiered approach to the right to privacy in the digital…
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President Barack Obama’s second presidential visit to Africa kicks off in Senegal, with stops in South Africa and Tanzania. This is a good regional mix highlighting the development and governance successes that are likely to be main themes of his trip.…
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“The police [are] working within the parameters of the law,” Uganda’s information minister, Mary Karooro Okurut, told journalists on Monday in Kampala, hours after police had forced two newspapers and two radio stations to shut down while they conducted a…
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The Arab uprisings have been a poignant reminder of how the Internet can promote free expression and assembly, but also how governments can try abuse it. The medium used by demonstrators to organize protests and bring medical supplies to Tahrir Square,…
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Traditions like Speakers' Corner protect free speech on the street, so why can't we do it on the internet?

(London) — Visitors to Hyde Park on a Sunday can see people standing on stepladders engaged in passionate debate with groups clustered around them. Speakers’ Corner is a symbol of Britain’s centuries old commitment to freedom of speech. When it comes to…
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We sat in a Kampala coffee house in early July with Oscar, an NGO representative of a civic education group that tackles a range of issues – from health to government reform. For over 15 years Oscar has been educating Ugandans about their rights. He told…
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The Nigerian government, which is proudly hosting the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting beginning today needs to get its own house in order before it can claim credibility in terms of human rights. Despite President Olusegun Obasanjo's leading…
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From everything we have heard from Tony Blair in recent days and weeks, it seems unlikely that he will wish to ask Vladimir Putin difficult questions when the two leaders meet at Downing Street today. On the contrary. The Prime Minister seems eager to go…