Sudan's absolute impunity for ethnic cleansing, crimes against humanity and war crimes in the western region of Darfur has entered its thirteenth year. This year, the regime escalated its slaughter of civilians to the point of apparently gassing its own people.
Profits Prioritised Over Protest and Dissent Dismissed for Dividends - Business and State Prove a Toxic Mix in Latin America
States, businesses, and global civil society must take action to neutralise this pandemic of violence and threats and to integrate a human rights approach into the interactions between the state, business, and civil society. Environmental human rights defenders cannot continue to be collateral damage for the share prices of multinationals or the whims of government.
Last week, Shahzad Masih and Shama Bibi, a Christian couple who had spent years in modern-day slavery in Punjab province in Pakistan, were brutally beaten and burned to death at the brick kiln where they work after they were accused of blasphemy for desecrating the Holy Qur'an.
A heavily worked phrase used by the tourist industry is to describe a particular destination as a "country of contrast". Sri Lanka is surely such a country - at one level a popular tourist destination... In contrast it also detains its citizens without trial, restricts freedom of expression, arrests members of the judiciary, stands accused of committing war crimes and routinely tortures.
Remembering the past has been a fraught process in Spain, a fact perhaps reflected in the attitude of Madrid's tourist authorities who would rather you didn't explore it either. Many believe that old wounds should not be reopened, that Spain should look forwards not back. But lack of accountability means that the wounds - collective and individual - still haven't healed properly.
Raising awareness of Kony and his crimes is surely a good thing. For one, it reminds us to remember his many victims. Unfortunately, however, making war criminals famous is clearly not enough.
For a day at least, we should stop and think of the reporters - whether working for an international news organisation, a local paper, or simply blogging - who are risking their lives every day to ask the difficult questions, lend a voice to the voiceless and get the story.