Discussion: Focusing on the final two years of the mandate – where has it been and where should it go?

Mar 10 2015

Maina Kiai is nearing the completion of his fourth year as the inaugural UN Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association – leaving him with two years before he departs the mandate. Over the last three-plus years, Kiai has strived to actively protect and promote the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association, through his reports, through official and unofficial country visits, and by meeting and consulting with as many stakeholders as possible. It has been an exciting and productive four years,… Continue reading →

FoAA rights litigation project

Discussion: assembly and association rights in the context of natural resource exploitation

Nov 28 2014

The need for natural resources such as land, water, timber, minerals, oil and gas is continually increasing worldwide. That increasing demand has naturally led to more competition – and often more social conflict. In many cases, decisions concerning the exploitation of natural resources are made in an opaque manner. Governments cut backroom deals with corporations without the input of those affected. Official corruption often looms large. The ostensible owners of the property being exploited may not benefit at all from the project. The… Continue reading →

Discussion extractives HRC HRC29 natural resources

Discussion: Litigating assembly and association rights – a new project from the Special Rapporteur

Sep 24 2014

Global trends show increasingly shrinking space for civic organizations and actions, as well as significant threats to the exercise of the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association. In an effort to help reverse these trends, the Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association has begun a new project that will focus on protecting these rights via litigation in national and regional courts. The project, which is supported by the government of Norway, will focus first on providing technical assistance… Continue reading →

FoAA rights litigation project

Discussion: Multilateral institutions and their effect on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association

Jun 21 2014

Global governance has long been the domain of States – whether at the United Nations or other lesser-known multilateral bodies. These organs are typically formed by States, run by States and controlled by States. In recent years, however, civil society has gained increasing recognition as a legitimate actor in the global government process. And this is as it should be, since civil society is one of the primary means for ordinary citizens to organize and peacefully raise concerns with governments and effect change. But just how inclusive are… Continue reading →


Discussion: Funding restrictions for civil society

Mar 13 2014

The ability to seek, receive and utilize resources is an inherent part of the right to freedom of association. This shouldn’t be a controversial statement. By definition, organizations need resources – financial, human and material – to operate. Without money, staff and equipment, an association is reduced to an empty shell – a vehicle stripped of its engine, fuel and driver. Unfortunately, civil society’s ability to access resources is far from secure in today’s world. Restrictions on funding have in recent years become a major threat to… Continue reading →

civil society Community of Democracies Discussion funding

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