Weekly Report: 20 October, 2017

Photo: Jordi Sànchez (Catalan National Assembl) and Jordi Cuixart (independence group Omnium leader) were arrested and faced a judge in Madrid on Monday, in an investigation for alleged sedition. The arrests of the both ‘Jordis’ is the first imprisonment of senior secessionist figures since Catalonia’s 1 October independence referendum. Photograph: Reuters (via bbc.com) Also this week we are proud to inform you that executive director of CANVAS Srdja Popovic has been elected rector of St Andrews, one of the oldest English-speaking schools of our world. Read what the BBC wrote about the election here. Cambodia On Monday, Cambodia’s parliament voted to make it part of party-law that if a political party is dissolved, seats in parliament should be re-distributed. The vote happened after the government filed a lawsuit earlier this month to dissolve main opposition party Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), part of an escalating political crisis. Monday’s parliamentary vote on the new amendments was supported by all 67 parliamentarians present from Hun Sen’s ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), while the CNRP boycotted the morning session. According to Reuters, under the new laws, “if a political party abandons its seats, is delisted, is disbanded or dissolved, a list of candidates or members of parliament of that party are no longer valid and beneficial.” The vote comes at a time when around half the opposition members of Cambodia’s parliament have allegedly left the country in fear of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s repressive regime, as we reported earlier this month. On Thursday, the South Chinese Morning Post publishes an interesting column dealing with particular historical explanations behind Hun Sen’s current crackdown against opposition forces ahead of next year’s election. “To understand, we must go back 47 years,” Jonathan Power writes. When the North Vietnamese invaded...

Srda Popovic izabran za rektora skotskog univerziteta

Aktivista i jedan od osnivaca Otpora Srda Popovic izabran je za rektora skotskog univerziteta Sent Endruz, preneo je BBC. Studenti univerziteta u gradu Sent Endruz izabrali su Popovica za rektora, koji je na skotskim univerzitetima predsednik univerzitetskog suda i predsedava sastancima na kojima se donese odluke od raspodele budzeta do akademskih politika. Popovic, koji je osnovao i nevladinu organizaciju Kanvas (Centar za primenjenu nenasilnu akciju i strategiju), bio je kandidat za rektora na predlog studenta Dzejmija Rodnija koji je procitao njegovu knjigu “Mustra za revoluciju”. Na glasanju studenata, Popovic je dobio vise glasova od bivseg lidera skotske liberaldemokratske partije Vilijama Renija. BBC navodi da je Popovica ubedilo da bude kandidat to sto je na toj funkciji bio i komicar Dzon Kliz iz Monti Pajtona. “Citav zivot volim Monti Pajton i njihov apsurdan humor je nesto sto je inspirisalo moju kreativnu taktiku protesta”, rekao je Popovic. Univerzitet Sent Endruz u istoimenom gradu osnovan je 1413. godine i najstariji je u Skotskoj, a treci najstariji u zemljama engleskog govornog podruja u svetu. Vise o Srdji Popovicu i njegovom izboru za rektora univerziteta u Skotskoj procitajte ovde Fotografija: N1...

CANVAS founder Srdja Popovic elected new Rector of St. Andrews University

After being approached by a St. Andrews student, CANVAS founding member Srdja Popovic ran for the position of Rector at St. Andrews University – and won the election last week. Running against MSP and Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie, Popovic was able to secure double the student’s votes. The position of Rector, existing at Scotland’s oldest universities, is elected by the student body every three years to become President of the University Court, presiding over meetings taking essential decisions for the University. In the new position of Rector at the prestigious university, Srdja Popovic “aims to empower students in St Andrews to mobilise themselves”, he told Rachel Miller from BBC News. The Serbian activist further stated that one of the goals should be to build a student movement as a platform for broader social change. Srdja Popovic already came closer to achieving this goal by helping 50 students active in the campaign to build their own ‘students for students’ movement. He also revealed to BBC that what ultimately convinced him to run for the position, was the discovery that one of the former Rectors was John Cleese who inspired him in his own creative protest through Monty Python’s absurd humor. To read more about Srdja Popovic and his new position as the Rector of the University of St. Andrews, read this BBC article. For those who speak Serbian, take a look at this N1 Info article. Photo: N1...

Protest Banner Lending Library: creatively supporting protest!

Chicago Tribune reported on American artist Aram Han Sifuentes who started sewing protest banner and arranging a “Protest Banner Lending Library”. The fiber arts’ teacher started sewing protest banners with different slogans last year. It was her way to support protests without having to go to the streets herself, as she was still in the process of applying for citizenship. The artist had moved to the US with her family from South Korea when she was a child and grew up in California. Establishing the “Protest Banner Lending Library”, she enabled others to go through a large list of already existing banners and to lend them for their own protests. Some of the banners Sifuente made herself, others were made by collaborators or one of the visitors of one of many workshops in Chicago or New York. Until mid-November, the Lending Library can be visited at the Alphawood Gallery in Lincoln Park, Chicago. This project is an example of how one can support protest and a cause without going to the streets or taking risks he or she is not prepared to take. Others who are, can still benefit from this support! And besides this “practical” aspect, a lot of Sifuente’s projects are creative and humorous, another quality which can be useful in attracting people to a cause when trying to win over more supporters, for example. To read more about the “Protest Banner Lending Library” and other creative projects by the artist, like a disco-themed polling booth for all those who cannot vote legally, follow this link. Photo: Terrence Antonio James / Chicago...

Anthem protests in Hong Kong: This time it’s the fans

With lots of attention focused on kneeling protests during the national anthem in the United States, some media has reported on a similar movement in Hong Kong. But while in the US it’s the athletes who protest, in Hong Kong it’s the fans. Hong Kong sports fans have been turning their backs, booing, chanting and even raising their middle fingers during China’s national anthem being played. “[A] protest of Beijing’s growing influence in this semiautonomous city”, states New York Times. Most recently on last Tuesday, Hong Kong soccer fans booed before an Asian Cup qualifier against Malaysia started, while two weeks ago, they protested at another game against Laos. After the street protests of the Umbrella Movement in Hong Kong had ended three years ago “without the government ceding any ground on expanding residents’ say in local elections”, the New York Times reports “that [the] spirit of protest has been revived in the stadium jeers, which appear to have started two years ago.” This month, a new law passed by the Chinese government went into effect, among other things prohibiting the disrespect of the anthem. Hong Kong has yet to enact its own version of the law. The city which returned to Chinese control in 1997 after being a British colony, enjoys significant autonomy and many citizens “desire to maintain a separate identity as Hongkongers”, writes Washington Post. In international sports competitions, Hong Kong also has its own teams competing. To read more about the protests, some local and international reactions or watch the latest videos from Hong Kong, take a look at the following articles by the New...