April 12, 2005 Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies // Nanyang Technological University
In an effort to make European troops more employable in out-of-area operations, the United States has urged NATO to set goals of having each member nation able to deploy 40 percent of its forces abroad with at least 8 percent of each nation's military actually deployed at any given time. The motivation behind this idea would be to help sustain the ongoing shift from reliance on territorial defenses during the Cold War to expeditionary forces in the post-September 11 era. Even so, this objective may be exceedingly difficult for new NATO members to achieve, given the competing budgetary and political pressures to which they are subjected....
The United States of America finds that neither the classic instruments of criminal law and procedure, nor the framework of the laws of war (including respect for the Geneva Conventions) has been apt to address the terrorist threat. As a result it has introduced new legal concepts, such as "enemy combatant" and "rendition", which were previously unheard of in international law and stand contrary to the basic legal principles that prevail on our continent. Thus, across the world, the United States has progressively woven a clandestine "spider's web" of disappearances, secret detentions and unlawful inter-state transfers, often encompassing countries notorious for their use of torture. Hundreds of persons have become entrapped in this web, in some cases merely suspected of sympathising with a presumed terrorist organisation....
On October 23, 1956, a Budapest student rally in support of Polish efforts to win autonomy from the Soviet Union sparked mass demonstrations. The police attacked, and the demonstrators fought back, tearing down symbols of Soviet domination and HWP rule, sacking the party newspaper's offices and shouting in favor of free elections, national independence, and the return of Imre Nagy to power. Erno Gero (Soviet Party leader in Hungary) called out the army, but many soldiers handed their weapons to the demonstrators and joined the uprising . Soviet officials in Budapest summoned Nagy to speak to the crowd, but the violence continued. At Gero's request, Soviet troops entered Budapest on October 24. The presence of these troops further enraged the Hungarians, who battled the troops and state security police. Crowds emptied the prisons, freed Cardinal Mindszenty, sacked police stations, and summarily hanged some member of the secret police. The Central Committee named Nagy prime minister on October 25 and selected a new Politburo and Secretariat; one day later, Janos Kadar replaced Gero as party first secretary....
December 7, 2004 Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization was formed shortly after the end of the Second World War to counter the threat of Soviet invasion of Western Europe. The treaty setting up the alliance was signed in 1949 by 10 Western European nations as well as Canada and the United States. NATO's mandate is to provide a common defence for the European and Atlantic areas, and to address common issues faced by the member countries.
December 3, 2004 Minorities at Risk Project // Center for International Development and Conflict Management // University of Maryland
Geographically dispersed throughout the country, Roma constitute the most disadvantaged and most discriminated against minority in Hungary.
Highly distinct from the majority population in terms of culture, race, language, and customs, the group has been historically a frequent target of various forms of official and unofficial discrimination and prejudice.
Roma in Hungary have virtually no risk of rebellion and only a very low risk of protest. Although their situation remains alarming (and in many cases has actually worsened compared to the previous communist era), the Hungarian government has adopted a number of policies designed to address the situation, including the new local and national self-government system, as well as several measures to reform the negative behavior of the police in relation to Roma. Overall, it can be said that Hungarian Roma have equal rights and a level of legal protection greater than that of most Roma in Eastern Europe and the national government is making attempted to improve their situation. At the same time, current policies are insufficient to adequately address the magnitude of popular discrimination and prejudice against Roma. Hungarian Roma continue to be discriminated against in employment and education, they face frequent violent attacks by right-wing groups, including skinheads, combined with an intentional lack of protection by police and the courts. It is hard to imagine that this situation will change any time soon. As elsewhere the problem seems to be perpetuated by a spiraling path of causality: prejudice leads to discrimination which leads to an economic situation which encourages crime which in turn feeds prejudice....
June 7, 2011 Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces
The Examples from the Ground are concrete illustrations of ways in which a gender perspective has been integrated in different security sector institutions around the world. They range from measures to counter human trafficking in Kosovo, to women’s organisations’ involvement with security institutions in Nepal, to female parliamentarians’ contribution to post-conflict reconstruction in Rwanda. These examples can help policymakers, trainers and educators better understand and demonstrate the linkages between gender and SSR.
The examples are organised around the following nine themes, for which a short introduction is provided:
• Police Reform and Gender
• Defence Reform and Gender
• Justice Reform and Gender
• Penal Reform and Gender
• Border Management and Gender
• Parliamentary Oversight of the Security Sector and Gender
• National Security Policy-Making and Gender
• Civil Society Oversight of the Security Sector and Gender
• SSR Assessment, Monitoring and Evaluation and Gender
Individual examples can also be downloaded individually, in English or in French, at: http://gssrtraining.ch/index.php?option=com_content&view;=article&id;=4&Itemid;=131〈=en...
April 27, 2011 International Peace Research Institute
The political transitions in Egypt and Tunisia have rekindled
the interest in how states and societies have moved from authoritarian
regimes to democracy after overthrowing old regimes.
This report responds to that interest by providing a factual
overview of transitions to democracy of nine European states
between 1974 and 1991.
The states covered fall into two geographical regions:
Southern Europe, and Central and Eastern Europe. The context
of transition in each of these regions was different. The transitions
in Southern Europe took place as mainly discrete events
with little influence of one country over another. In contrast,
there was a strong regional dynamic in Central and Eastern
Europe, where all transitions were influenced by Gorbachev’s
policies of perestroika and glasnost and the loosening of the
Soviet Union’s grip on its satellite states....
Since 2008 Amnesty International has received reports of a number of violent attacks against
Roma and their properties in Hungary. These reports described, among others, a series of
nine attacks against members of the Romani communities across Hungary which occurred in
2008 and 2009 and which claimed six lives.
The Hungarian authorities have a duty to prevent discrimination and ensure redress for
victims of hate crimes. Amnesty International’s research into some of the nine attacks and
other reported incidents indicates that the Hungarian authorities failed to identify and
respond effectively to violence against Roma in Hungary, including by not investigating
possible racial motivation. This report details the shortcomings in the responses of Hungarian
criminal justice system in relation to hate crimes. Although there are existing provisions to
combat hate crimes they are not being properly implemented, including because the police
lack capacity to recognize and investigate hate crimes and lack training to enhance such
capacity. There are no guidelines for police offices on how to investigate hate crimes and
how to treat alleged victims – and neither are there guidelines for prosecutors on how to
oversee these investigations. The assistance and support provided by the state for victims of
hate crimes are also inadequate. In terms of prevention the authorities lack effective
measures to map the nature and scale of the issue, including because they do not collect
disaggregated data on hate crimes, thereby hampering their ability to identify trends and
craft relevant policy responses.
The report concludes with recommendations to the authorities to ensure that effective and
human rights compliant measures are taken to prevent racially motivated attacks in Hungary
in the future and that any such incidents are promptly, independently, impartially and
thoroughly investigated; those responsible for criminal conduct are brought to justice in fair
proceedings; and the victims are treated with dignity and receive adequate reparation, in a
manner that is consistent with the authorities’ obligations under international human rights
On May 12, 2009, the UN General Assembly will elect 18 new Human Rights Council members. Twenty countries are candidates. However, each is not competing against all of the others, but rather only against the ones from the same UN regional group. In this year’s election, all but two regional groups have submitted the same amount of candidates as available seats. The Asian Group has 5 countries vying for 5 available seats, the Latin American and Caribbean Group (―GRULAC‖) has 3 countries vying for 3 available seats, and the Western European and Others Group (―WEOG‖) has 3 countries vying for 3 available seats. This does not mean that the candidate countries for these groups will automatically be elected; in order to become a Council member, a country must receive the votes of at least 97 of the 192 General Assembly member states (an absolute majority). Competition between the candidates exists only in the African Group, where 6 countries are vying for 5 available seats, and in the Eastern European Group, where 3 countries are vying for 2 available seats....
December 10, 2008 International Centre for Migration Policy Development
A Survey and Analysis of Border Management and Border Apprehension Data from 20 States.
With a Special Survey on the Use of Counterfeit Documents.
Based on the contributions of the border services of 20 Central and Eastern European states, the 2006 Yearbook again provides its valuable overview and analysis of irregular migration trends in the region. Over the past ten years the annual Yearbook on Illegal Migration, Human Smuggling and Trafficking in Central and Eastern Europe has come to be regarded as an authoritative source of information on recent border trends and in particular on the phenomena of illegal migration, human smuggling and trafficking. The annual Yearbook covers the most recent trends in illegal migration and human smuggling in the region, including long-term trends in border apprehensions, shifts in source, transit and destination countries, demographic characteristics of irregular migrants, the relationship between legal and illegal border crossings, new developments in the methods of border crossings and document abuse and on removals of irregular migrants. In addition, this year’s edition for the first time features a Special Survey on the use of counterfeit documents for illegal migration purposes. This Survey is based on the contributions received from document specialists or Special Units dealing with document security in the countries under review and provides the first comprehensive overview and analysis of patterns and trends in the use of counterfeit documents for illegal migration purposes in Central and Eastern Europe....