The debate over the ratification of the so called “Istanbul Convention” in Bulgaria, as in some other countries in the region, became a huge public scandal and probably the most important political matter of 2018. Originally intended to provide states with a framework for prevention and reduction of domestic violence against women, the document has become a byword for a conspiracy against the Bulgarian people and their supposed “traditional values” violated by foreign liberal powers through the use of “gender ideology”. On the 27th of July the Constitutional Court, referred to the matter by 75 deputie ..
Note from the LeftEast editors: this article has been published in cooperation with the Serbo-Croatian web portal Bilten.Org For three years now Bulgaria is experiencing a growing concern with violence among children, especially at school. Experts, NGOs, government representatives and media are contesting to restate their commitment to end children’s aggressive behavior, impelled by recurring cases of serious physical harm and even death. 60% of children in Bulgaria do not feel safe at school, the head of the Juvenile Crime Department at the Interior Ministry has stated in October. In 2016-2017 the Ministry o ..
A group of people armed with knives has attacked Stanislav Sergienko, activist of “Social Movement” and student of Kyiv-Mohyla academy on the 20th of April in Kyiv. Stanislav has been stabbed multiple times and is currently being treated in the hospital. There are strong reasons to conclude that ultra-rightists committed this crime. On the April 20, 2017 at about 4 pm Stanislav Sergienko, activist of the platform “Start” and the civil organization “Social Movement”, was attacked and stabbed by two unknown people near the entrance to his home. Now Stas is in the hospital, where he has had urgent surger ..
How ‘Freedom Day’ went in Belarus, and what to expect next: comments from Belarusian activists On 25 May 2017, demonstrations marking Freedom Day took place in cities across Belarus (Freedom Day is the anniversary of the announcement of the self-proclaimed Belarusian People’s Republic on 25 March 1918; it is celebrated mainly by Belarusian nationalists). The government’s reaction to the demonstrations was quite brutal: in Minsk the unauthorized rally, attended by several thousand people, was dispersed by the police and about seven hundred participants were detained. Similar rallies were held in Gomel, Bre ..
Note from the LeftEast editors: we publish this statement by Rojava Solidarity NYC, a solidarity committee dedicated to supporting the revolution in Rojava, written in response to the recent Turkish operation in Syria, Euphrates Shield. RS-NYC seeks to publicize Rojava’s ongoing struggle in the English-speaking world, to promote the revolution’s radical communalist politics, and to provide direct, humanitarian aid to the people of Rojava. Past aid campaigns have included the provision of vital medical supplies and the collection of books for the Mesopotamian Academy. The committee has also published one ..
The rise and fall of the coup d’état in Turkey has disclosed a number of situational ironies, each of which indicates a difference between appearance and reality. A brief analysis of the two separate and contrasting levels of meaning embedded in at least six situations reveals some uncomfortable truths about Turkish politics and may also give a couple of hints about the prospects of democracy in Turkey. To begin with, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the leading figures of the Justice and Development Party (AKP), who declared their distrust in social media and blocked Twitter and Facebook several times, had ..
Note of the LeftEast editors: this article has been published in collaboration with the Serbo-Croat web-portal Bilten.Org and has been translated by and republished with the consent of the author himself. Although pronounced successful, Belgrade Pride has aroused more interest amongst politicians, than the public and the LGBT community. While politicians didn’t hesitate to express their attitude, the community mostly ignored the event, showing clearly that it is not interested in political images without real solutions. In spite of this, the message that LGBT rights absolutely are not a priority was sent. A ..
On September 27, the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church signed a petition calling for a legal ban on abortion. The new children’s rights ombudsman Anna Kuznetsova, who has already declared herself as an obscurantic pro-religious spokeswoman, has enthusiastically supported the initiative of banning abortion, as well as post-coital contraception. As she believes, the “whole world civilized world supports such measures” — and she obviously meant the examples of Poland and Nicaragua. After the predictable results of the parliamentary elections (Putin’s United Russia party now controls ¾ of all th ..
Urgent Call for Solidarity! Members of “Academics for Peace” and Education and Science Workers Union (Eğitim-SEN) have been removed from their positions in public higher education institutions permanently! In January 2016, 2,218 scholars from Turkey signed a petition titled “We will not be a party to this crime,” also known as the Peace Petition. Since then the signatories (“Academics for Peace”) have been subject to heavy pressure and persecution. Hundreds of them have faced criminal and disciplinary investigations, custody, imprisonment, or violent threats. Several academics have been dismissed or ..