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Arab News - May 29, 2007 Abu Zainab The Qatari deputy emir, Sheikh Tamim ibn Hamad Al-Thani, has called for meaningful political reforms and for the promotion of the true spirit of democracy, freedom of speech and tolerance in the Arab world. "Democracy and development should go hand in hand and one cannot be postponed on the pretext of the other," he said while inaugurating the Second Forum on Democracy and Reform in the Arab World in Doha. The National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) under the support of Emir Sheikh Hamad ibn Khalifa Al-Thani is organizing the three-day conference. Sheikh Tamim said democracy and development are two concerns shared by all Arab countries. Hence, they must be tackled in a wide scope, transcending the narrow borders of any one definite country. Col. Ely Ould Mohamed Vall, former chairman of the Military Council in Mauritania, and former Sudanese President Abdurrahman Siwar Al-Dahab, who spoke at the opening session on Sunday, called for meaningful political reforms and for broadening the scope of democratic practice and the promotion of tolerance. Siwar lamented the campaigns of hostility and misrepresentation being waged against the Muslim world. He said the challenges of democracy and human rights could not be met unless citizens are allowed to practice their civil rights, including participation in decision-making and accountability, in a democratic system. Over 500 delegates representing civil society groups, political parties and human rights organizations across the Arab world and a few other countries are attending the conference. Meanwhile, the final "Doha Debates" of the current series was held yesterday at the Qatar Foundation. A motion entitled "This House believes that torture is only acceptable under legal supervision" was mooted. Speaking for the motion was Khawar Qureshi QC, a British barrister who holds the prestigious rank of Queen's Counsel. He specializes in commercial law and international arbitration and has advised and opposed governments on a range of matters including torture, terrorism, and the extradition of alleged Al-Qaeda members. Also speaking in favor was Col. Bob Stewart, the first British commander under UN command in Bosnia during 1992-1995. After serving in Bosnia, he became chief of policy at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe for two years and has since retired from the army but is a frequent commentator and consultant on military and terrorist related issues. Speaking against the motion was Irene Khan, secretary-general of Amnesty International, which is the world's largest human rights organization and campaigns to end human rights abuses worldwide. As the first woman, first Asian and first Muslim in charge of the organization, she has led it in various challenges in the wake of 9/11. She was joined by Freshta Raper, a torture victim. Raper is an Iraqi Kurd from Halabja who now lives in London. She was arrested and tortured in Iraq in the mid-1980s after hiding two 16-year-olds in a school cupboard who were wanted after staging a protest against the government. The program will be broadcast on BBC World on June 2 and 3.

Altri articoli su:
[ Diritti Umani, Civili  & Politici ] [ Egitto ] [ Islam e democrazia ] [ Libano ] [ Medio Oriente ] [ Qatar ] [ Saad Ibrahim ] [ Sudan ] [ Turchia ]

Comunicati su:
[ Diritti Umani, Civili  & Politici ] [ Egitto ] [ Islam e democrazia ] [ Libano ] [ Medio Oriente ] [ Qatar ] [ Saad Ibrahim ] [ Sudan ] [ Turchia ]

Interventi su:
[ Diritti Umani, Civili  & Politici ] [ Egitto ] [ Islam e democrazia ] [ Libano ] [ Medio Oriente ] [ Qatar ] [ Saad Ibrahim ] [ Sudan ] [ Turchia ]

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