No Security Without Rights

(Photo: Pedro Mata /Fotomovimiento) The struggle against terrorism contributes to an alarming and constant retreat of the civil and political rights of people. In the context of a multipolar world scenario, which is strongly conditioned by an unprecedented evolution of national, regional and international responses to new terrorist threats, the principles of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights seem to have been relegated to an opaque area between the “necessary and legitimate” fight against terrorism and the gross violations that it perpetrates. After the 9/11 attacks in the United States, a growing wave of national and international promises of security was rolled on in a hegemonic way, as a response to the perception of a serious threat to world peace and safety. Since the beginning of the 21st century, the terrifying expressions and dimensions of the new terrorist threat at a global level, have led to the adoption of significant and unavoidable changes in the legal, political, economic and defensive agendas of states and international organizations, creating growing incompatibilities between many of these terrorist measures and the respect, protection and promotion of human rights. The report “No Security Without Rights’’ compiles various efforts to denounce the perpetrated human rights’ violations through the implementation of the new anti-terrorism normative tools that have been approved by the Euro-Mediterranean regions in the past years. The ambiguity in the definitions of terrorism which are included in the national legislations leads to an indiscriminate persecution of individuals and groups, as well as to the arbitrary criminalization of activities that are perceived as threats to the state’s security. Procedural safeguards in criminal matters, fair treatment to accused people, and fundamental rights and freedoms are being relativized in this framework of fight against terror; while the authorities’ powers, impunity, injustice and severeness of the penalties charged to the accused increase without restriction, need or glimmer of proportionality.

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VIOLENT EXTREMISM IN SOCIAL MEDIA NETWORKS

Under-reporting of hate crimes based on racism and xenophobia continue to be a significant problem across the Mediterranean. Hate speech and discrimination are the most visible part of several violent extremist movements. Violent extremism (VE) is a diverse phenomenon. The spread of violent extremism is currently done through social media network, where the immense accumulation of information requires the expertise on Big Data. For that, there is the necessity to contribute in several key initiatives identified. The present document intends to present a desk review on the expression of violent extremism in social media network, but, more specifically, tries to give an specific answer on how to combat online hate speech in social media networks through a roadmap. .

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GOOD PRACTICES IN THE EURO-MEDITERRANEAN REGION

Civil society represents an underused resource to confront violent extremism. We can offer a positive and nonviolent vision of our future together that can create an effective alternative message in front of the voices and groups that promote violence. Civil society needs to be supported, protected and empowered to make a constructive contribution to confront violent extremism. However, the good-willing positions expressed have not been followed by real on-the-ground measures to reinforce the civil society contribution to prevent violent extremism. Actually, there is a growing concern that states are interested in restraining the space of civil society. In the name of fighting terrorism, governments have curtailed political freedoms and imposed restrictive measures against human rights defenders and civil society activists in many countries. States systematically invoke national security and public safety to shrink the space of independent civil society activities. In many countries, special legislative and regulatory measures have been used to crack down on NGOs and activists who advocate for social change and criticize government policies. These measures make it more difficult for civil society actors to promote human rights and tolerance as an essential element in the prevention of violent extremism. It is essential to maintain and protect civil society if we want to address the conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism. The following document aims to share good practices to prevent all forms of violent extremism in the Euro-mediterranean region, who have been classified both by the different Goals of the OPEV Plan of Action as well as the 3 main regions of the Euro-mediterranean region.

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Plan of Action

Plan of Action of the Euro-Mediterranean civil society to prevent all forms of violent extremism. Barcelona, 30 of January 2017 The Barcelona Declaration is the result of a participative and deliberative process that has count with the active participation of 320 persons representing 172 organizations from 22 countries. The results of the debate, have been elaborated by the NOVACT Research team in cooperation with the Coordination of Maghrebi Human Rights Organizations (CMODH). The Barcelona Declaration is the first publication of the Observatory to Prevent Violent Extremism, created in Barcelona, the past 30 of January, 2017. Choose your language to read the full Plan of Action: English Français Arabic Català Español  

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