War on Want's annual report and accounts for the year ended 31 March 2017

April 2018

War on Want's annual report and accounts for the year ended 31 March 2017 

PDF icon WoW Signed Accounts 2016_2017.pdf

Addameer

Ramallah, Palestine

Addameer (Arabic for conscience) Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association is a Palestinian non-governmental, civil institution that works to support Palestinian political prisoners held in Israeli and Palestinian prisons. Established in 1992 by a group of activists interested in human rights, the centre offers free legal aid to political prisoners, advocates their rights at the national and international level, and works to end torture and other violations of prisoners' rights through monitoring, legal procedures and solidarity campaigns.

Israel holds thousands of Palestinians as political prisoners. Israel’s system of arrest and detention is an integral part of Israel’s apartheid system, under which Palestinians are governed under a separate set of laws than Israelis. It combines human rights abuses against individuals with a system of discrimination specifically designed to restrict and repress the Palestinian people and their struggle for freedom.

What we do with them: The UK government has obligations under international law to ensure that the Fourth Geneva Convention is respected by other signatories, including Israel. The UK also has ‘third state responsibility’ to take action when a state breaches the universally binding principles of international law, such as the prohibition of torture. This means that the UK government must act to hold Israel to account for its illegal and unjust policies towards Palestinian political prisoners. Our relationship with Addameer ensures we can bring the latest news and authoritative reports to our UK campaigns seeking justice for Palestinians.

Al Warcha Media Collective

Tunis, Tunisia

Al Warcha Media Collective a grassroots group with a commitment towards the oppressed and marginalised and support for social movements. They are all young and socially committed, come from different parts of the country and aspire to create media that will focus on social justice, national/popular sovereignty as well as on socio-economic rights of the most marginalised and pauperised Tunisians – especially the voiceless citizens that live in the interior and in popular neighbourhoods.

Their main aim is to balance out the lack of attention given to struggles of social movements and news about marginalised regions of the interior, as well as about popular neighbourhoods, in dominant and traditional media outlets. They see a need to compensate for the deficit in coverage of struggles of people in the Global South who are faced with challenges similar to those seen in the Maghreb and the Arab region. Their media projects will give priority to themes that are absent, neglected or inadequately addressed by traditional media such as: climate justice, the fight against pollution, the agrarian question, struggles of small peasants and fishers, food sovereignty, agro-ecology, exploitation of natural resources, the struggle for national sovereignty and the re-appropriation of resources exploited mainly by multinationals.

The collective also aims to create a network of grassroots “reporters-citizens-activists” living in the interior regions and in popular neighbourhoods, to train them in journalistic reporting, and equip them with the proper tools to become bridges for progressive initiatives and ideas.

War on Want is supporting Al Warcha Media Collective in their work to create a committed, independent and innovative media project called “Inhiyez”, working for social and political change with a focus on socio-economic rights and national liberation. This media project will have roots in marginalised regions and neighbourhoods of the country, and will seek to platform the voices of disadvantaged populations by following their struggles and initiatives for social justice and popular/national sovereignty.

Agro-ecology and Green Environment (AGE)

Sfax/Kairouan/Tunis, Tunisia

Agro-ecology and Green Environment (AGE) is an organisation of activists and researchers who focus on food sovereignty and agro-ecology, environmental and climate justice and issues of access to land and water.

More than three decades of neoliberal economic restructuring and deregulation have heavily impacted small-holder farming in Tunisia and the region in general. The structural Adjustment Programmes (SAPs) have transformed the region’s farmers, dispossessing many, raising prices for inputs to unaffordable levels and promoting export-led agriculture of largely cash crops, rather than of staple food crops for local consumption. Issues of the right to food and just access to land are still at the heart of people’s socio-economic demands, which have been expressed once again in the popular demands of the Arab uprisings: “Bread, freedom and social justice”.

While most attention focused on urban rebellions in Tunisia, Egypt, Morocco and other countries, rural dissent and protest were also present across the region. It is not a coincidence that the 2010-2011 Tunisian uprising started in Sidi Bouzid, an impoverished agricultural region, where speculative capital and agribusiness flourished. It is also no minor detail that the incident that set the Arab uprisings into motion was the self-immolation of a fruit vendor: Mohamed Bouazizi. In addition to this, Tunisia suffers heavily from the effects of climate change, reflected in frequent droughts and severe shortages of water.

War on Want supported AGE's ground-breaking initiative of setting up the North African Network for Food Sovereignty. This network strives to be a unifying structure for struggles around food sovereignty in North Africa and will be involved in local, continental and international mobilisations.

Latin American Observatory for Environmental Conflicts (OLCA)

Santiago, Chile

The Latin American Observatory for Environmental Conflicts (Observatorio Latinoamerica de conflictos Ambientales – OLCA) advises communities in conflict to enhance their management capacities in favour of their environmental rights. It monitors environmental conflicts, develops management tools for them; investigates and disseminates aspects related to environmental protection and citizen rights; it carries out investigations at sector level, specific research and promotes the methodological training in conflict management.

Chile is the world’s top copper-producing country and the country with the world’s largest lithium reserves. The rising prices for copper and lithium globally means Chile is set to become one of the world’s top destinations for foreign mining investment in these industries. Chile is already the target of more than 30% of the total projected mining investment for Latin America.

The current expansion of these trends is associated with the expansion of social conflict, ecological destruction, pollution and poverty – hallmarks of extractivism.

War on Want’s work with OLCA has primarily focused on supporting the community of Caimanes in the Coquimbo region, who have resisted the expansion of LSE-listed Antofagasta PLC’s ‘Los Pelambres’ copper mine, and the ‘El Mauro’ tailings dam, which have been fraught with social and environmental conflicts and impacts on communities.

However, along with UK-based partner The London Mining Network, we’ve recently set up a UK working group on extractivism in Chile. Its objectives are: to analyse and monitor other UK mining investments in the country – as well as their investors, including pension funds and faith-based investors – and to ensure that operations respect and protect human rights and the environment.

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