Friday, 18 December 2009

Copenhagen – the pressure is working

To follow up on my previous post: yesterday, the media was calling the crucial Copenhagen climate summit dead on arrival.

But 24 hours later, after millions of petition signatures, hundreds of thousands of phone calls, and a massive outcry across the planet, a deal could be back on.

Leaders are frantically doing in hours what they've failed to do for years, but the talks could still collapse. Building up on the massive success on its global petition campaign, Avaaz is now circulating this message:

“We know our pressure is working, let's use these crucial final hours to ramp it up, and get a real deal, not a dressed-up weak agreement. Sign the staggering 13 million person petition if you haven't yet, and forward this email to everyone:

The petition has become the centre of the global revolt against failure in Copenhagen. The names of petition signers are being read out by young people who have taken over spaces in the Copenhagen summit and in governments round the world, including the US State Department and the Canadian Prime Minister's office.

Amazingly, leaders themselves are appealing to the public for action. UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown made an impassioned appeal to 3000 Avaaz members on a global conference call on Wednesday, calling for an historic 48 hour internet based campaign from citizens around the world, calling our impact crucial.

History is being made in Copenhagen, but so far, it's not being made by leaders, but by us, millions of people round the world who are directly engaging, hour by hour, like never before, in the fight to save our planet. The pressure is working, let's ramp it up.

Please, sign the petition."

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Save Copenhagen - last-ditch effort to save the summit

With just three days to go, the crucial Copenhagen summit to stop global warming is failing; only massive public pressure can save it. The international civic organization Avaaz has launched a global petition to put pressure on world leaders and urge everyone to sign it. It may be the largest in history.

Millions watched the Avaaz vigil inside the summit on TV yesterday, where Archbishop Desmond Tutu told hundreds of delegates and assembled children:

“We marched in Berlin, and the wall fell.

"We marched for South Africa, and apartheid fell.

"We marched at Copenhagen -- and we WILL get a Real Deal.”

Copenhagen is seeking the biggest mandate in history to stop the greatest threat humanity has ever faced. History will be made in the next few days.

Tomorrow, the world's leaders arrive for an unprecedented 60 hours of direct negotiations. Experts agree that without a tidal wave of public pressure for a deal, the summit will not stop catastrophic global warming of 2 degrees.

Sign the giant petition below. It already has a staggering 10 million supporters. Every single name is actually being read out at the summit -- please sign this petition now.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Arts and Human Rights in Iran/for Iran

Tomorrow, Monday December 7, students will hold major demonstrations in Iran to support the Iranian civil rights movement and protest the severe repression, widespread arrests and imprisonment of hundreds of civil society activists across the country.

And on December 12, international arts events organized under the banner of ArtsUnited4Iran will try to draw the world’s attention onto human rights abuses in the country.

On the occasion of the six-month anniversary of the disputed elections and the sixty-first anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, artists and activists will join together to highlight the ongoing protests in Iran and honour the Iranian people’s peaceful struggle for their human and civil rights. They will call on the Iranian government to respect the freedom of assembly, expression and press, to free all prisoners of conscience, to end rape and torture in prisons, and to hold those responsible for committing human rights crimes accountable, the ArtsUnited4Iran organizers say.

The arts and culture events will include lectures, concerts, gallery showings, readings, round tables, film screenings in over 20 locations worldwide.

Iran experts and activists speaking out in support of the civil rights movement in Iran include Hamid Dabashi, Columbia University Professor and CNN commentator; Hadi Ghaemi, Director of the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran; Firuzeh Mahmoudi, United4Iran’s International Coordinator; Omid Memarian, Iran expert at Human Rights Watch; and Reza Moini, Iran expert for Reporters without Borders (RSF).

United4Iran is a non-political global network of individuals and human rights activists building a mass movement in solidarity with the people of Iran. United4Iran is opposed to blanket economic sanctions and military action against Iran, which they believe, will have detrimental effects on the situation of human rights and harm the Iranian people.

The ArtsUnited4Iran sponsors include Reporters without Borders, Human Rights Watch, the Nobel Women’s Initiative, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, ARTICLE 19, and Front Line.

For more details on December 12 events visit united4iran