This week on the Human Rights Channel we look at protests videos from Afghanistan, Bahrain and Venezuela. Covering issues ranging from female representation to government accountability, citizen witnesses take us inside these ongoing movements. We also look at Ukraine, where civilians are caught in middle of the escalating conflict between the government and pro-Russian separatists. For more citizen videos from around the world, check out The Human Rights Channel.
Activists Protest Lack of Female Representation in New Afghan Cabinet
On February 3 activists in Afghanistan gathered to protest the lack of female ministers amongst the newly confirmed portion of the Afghan cabinet. Following Afghan elections last April and a run-off election in June, President Ashraf Ghani and CEO Abdullah Abdullah put aside political differences and formed a national unity government, with the tenet that four women would be appointed to the new cabinet. Last week one-third of their proposed cabinet, all men, were confirmed by parliament. Afghani activists pressured Ghani and Abdullah to honor their commitment and ensure female voices will be included amongst the cabinet.
Wounded Civilians Describe Bombings in Eastern Ukraine
Footage continues to pour out of Ukraine. With increased fighting between the Ukrainian military and pro-Russian separatists in the eastern part of the country, civilian areas have become the battleground. This week Amnesty International released a video of a researcher interviewing bombing victims in the city of Donetsk.
The victims, an elderly woman who was hit while in her bedroom and a man who was hit by shrapnel while waiting in line for humanitarian aid, describe the attacks in detail from their hospital beds.
Young Bahraini Activist Shot with Birdshot at Close Range
Members of the Duraz Youth Movement, a group of Bahraini anti-regime activists, shared a video on January 30th of injuries sustained by one of their members during the protest (Warning: Graphic Footage). The 14-year old boy had reportedly been shot with birdshot by Bahraini security forces as they attempted to disperse protesters. Duraz claims that the security forces deliberately aimed for the boy, who was heavily wounded as a result. Sectarian tensions are currently high in the capital city of Manama, with a Shia opposition leader on trial under a Sunni-led regime and many participating in trial-related protests.
Student Protesters Dispersed by Venezuelan Security Forces
In Venezuela, student protesters took to the campus of University Rafael Belloso Chacin (URBE) on January 28 to protest the regime of president Nicolas Maduro. Citizen video of the event shows the Venezuelan military in riot gear attempting to disperse the students and firing tear gas into the crowd. The title of the video “return of protests to URBE” refers to the nationwide protest movement that formed to challenge the Maduro regime in 2014. During these protests, Venezuelan security forces were criticized for a repressive use of force and intimidation, with many protesters also resorting to violence. While the movement is still ongoing, protest size has diminished since its height in February and March of 2014.
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