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It is ironic that Jeanine Áñez, a conservative politician who served as Bolivia’s interim president for a year, was detained on March 13 on charges of “terrorism” and other crimes. Under her administration, which ended in November, prosecutors used…
Standing behind bars, Bolivia's former interim President Jeanine Añez speaks to an unidentified woman at a police station jailhouse, in La Paz, Bolivia, on March 13, 2021.
News

New evidence of torture and inhumane treatment of civilians by Azerbaijani forces emerges

During last autumn’s six-week war between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the ethnic-Armenian majority enclave Nagorno-Karabakh, as Azerbaijani forces took control of areas in and around the region, they rounded up local civilians. Most younger civilians…
A portrait of Eduard Shakhkeldyan  at the apartment in Stepanakert where his family is temporarily staying.
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A well-functioning, independent judicial system is essential for good governance, accountability, and, ultimately, political stability. The lack of such a system in Bolivia explains many of the serious problems the country has gone through in the last…
Bolivia's new President Luis Arce leaves the Congress on his inauguration day in La Paz, Bolivia, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020.
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Pope Francis’s support for same-sex civil unions, extracted from a 2019 interview and recently broadcast, has reverberated around the world. Not surprisingly, it is the only snippet from “Francesco”, a wide-ranging documentary on his life,…
Pope Francis attends a inter-religious ceremony for peace in the Basilica of Santa Maria in Aracoeli, in Rome, October 20, 2020.
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A new treaty to deepen the link between environmental protection and human rights in Latin America and the Caribbean has the potential to reduce the conflicts that lead to the murders of so many environmental defenders in the region.  The…
Bernardo, a man in his 30s, was born in a quilombo (Afro-Brazilian) community of around 60, men, women, and children in Minas Gerais State, southeast Brazil. Bernardo told Human Rights Watch that he feels powerless against aerial spraying of pesticides. “
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As a new government sets the agenda in Yerevan, it is high time to consider the excessive use of pre-trial detention in politically sensitive trials.  The Armenians who took to the streets in the country’s largest mass…
Protest against Armenia's ruling Republican party's nomination of former President Serzh Sarksyan as its candidate for prime minister, in Yerevan, Armenia April 13, 2018.
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Flowers aren't enough. Authorities need to break the culture of impunity for domestic violence

While many countries celebrated International Women’s Day on March 8, Armenia kicked off a whole month dedicate to honoring women. It continues through April 7 – the Day of Motherhood and Beauty. Throughout the month, family members, friends and…
Taguhi shows scars on her neck and shoulder.
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(Buenos Aires) — President Evo Morales of Bolivia seems obsessed with staying in power. In 2016, he called a referendum on a constitutional amendment that would have eased term limits in the country’s Constitution and allowed…
Bolivia's President Evo Morales speaks during a news conference at the Presidential Palace in La Paz, Bolivia, May 9, 2017.
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Last month Armenia held its watershed parliamentary election, initiating the country’s transfer to a parliamentary form of government. The process will be completed after next year’s presidential vote, when the president’s post will become largely…
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On November 2, the Chilean Senate adopted a resolution urging the Bachelet administration to support the Vatican’s efforts to mediate the Venezuelan crisis, and to seek a special OAS session to evaluate Venezuela's compliance with the Inter-American…
Aerial view of St. Peter's square in the Vatican.
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Correa Cracks Down on Environmental Activism

During his visit to Ecuador last month, Pope Francis delivered a speech on environmental stewardship and urged the administration of President Rafael Correa to “open spaces for dialogue” on how to manage the country’s resources. The 4,000-square-mile…
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Why Catholics must condemn anti-gay violence

The recent assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the Family has brought renewed attention to Catholic approaches to gay and lesbian persons. During the synod, church leaders discussed pastoral and theological perspectives regarding the place of homosexual…
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Bolivia’s new law sets a bad example, even though child labor has declined by 30 percent since 2000.

A controversial new law in Bolivia makes it the first country in the world to legalize work by 10-year-olds. One justification offered by officials sounded awfully familiar: “Kids want to work.” We’ve spent the last year investigating child labor in the…
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Vilnius’ beautiful old town is alive with flags and symbols of the European Union ahead of the ‘Eastern Partnership’ summit starting Thursday, but the real drama has been played out far from the Lithuanian capital. For weeks international media attention…
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I went to Vatican City recently to talk to officials there about Pope Francis’ views on homosexuality. In that famous interview in July, Pope Francis answered a question about how he would deal with gay priests: “Who am I to judge”? We sent him a letter…
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I am not Catholic. I am not a believer. And yet, as a South African, I am aware of the positive and negative roles the Catholic Church can play. It was outspoken against apartheid, and its liberation theology (controversial within the church) inspired a…
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Human rights need to be high on President Sarkozy’s agenda for his lightning-trip through the South Caucasus. Stakes are high in this strategically key but chronically unstable region. France has important economic interests there. Like the rest of Europe…
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There will be elections on Sunday in Yerevan, Armenia's capital. The poll will be the first test of Armenian democracy since the February 2008 presidential election, which was marred by irregularities and culminated in a violent confrontation between the…
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Post-Soviet Democracy

Elections in the former Soviet Union are stolen all the time, but governments get away with it by stifling democratic institutions. Western leaders need to support struggling civil societies in the region, before there is nothing left to support. The…