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Swords into plowshares

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Swords into Plowshares is the blog of the Peacemaking Program and the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations of the Presbyterian Mission Agency of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

Seeking peace. Striving for justice. Together.

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Posts with category: Human Rights

May 28, 2015

Love your neighbor

by Amélie Clémot and Sarah Hoyle

German Zarate speakingGermán Zárate of the Diaconia of the Presbyterian Church of Colombia is visiting this week to discuss the church in Colombia, social justice and his work with the Colombia Accompaniment Program, a collaborative partnership among the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) World Mission, and the Presbyterian Church of Colombia or Iglesia Presbiteriana de Colombia (IPC). Colombia has a violent history, with communities finding themselves displaced as a result of the Free Trade Agreement, and caught between drug trafficking guerrilla groups and corruption in the government. His talk ...

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May 28, 2015

Interfaith vigil for Palestinian children

No way to treat a child logoAll are invited to attend an Interfaith Vigil on the occasion of the International Day for Protection of Children, Monday, June 1, at noon, at the U.S. Capitol's Upper Senate Park, 200 New Jersey Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001. 

The vigil will highlight the issue of Palestinian children in Israeli detention and focus on the need to protect all children, both within our US communities and abroad. 

Each year hundreds of Palestinian children are arrested by Israeli forces and prosecuted in the Israeli military court system. The United Nations and many human rights groups are concerned by reports ...

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May 27, 2015

Learn more about Western Sahara

by Nathan Jumper

Map of Africa, Western Sahara in GreenBasic Facts

Western Sahara is formally listed by the United Nations as a “Non-Self-Governing Territory.” This means that it possesses neither independence nor formal incorporation in another country. Located on the Northwestern coast of Africa, South of Morocco and North of Mauritania, Western Sahara is comprised of a population estimated at 550,000, most of whom are Sunni Muslim. From the late 1800s through 1976, Western Sahara was a colony of Spain and, as is often the case of former colonies, Western Saharan boundaries still reflect the interests of its colonizing power. There is currently an intense ...

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May 26, 2015

International Week of Solidarity with the Peoples of Non-Self-Governing Territories

From the United Nations:

The UN General Assembly, by its resolution 60/119 of 8 December 2005, requested the annual observance of the Week of Solidarity with the Peoples of Non-Self-Governing Territories.

In the UN Charter, a Non-Self-Governing Territory is defined as a Territory “whose people have not yet attained a full measure of self-government”.

In 1946, several UN Member States identified a number of Territories under their administration that were not self-governing and placed them on a UN list. Countries administering Non-Self-Governing Territories are called administering Powers.  As a result of the decolonization process over the years, most of ...

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May 26, 2015

Tell Congress to Advocate for Palestinian Children

From our colleagues in the Office for Public Witness:

The detention of Palestinian minors by Israel raises serious concerns about lack of due process and ill-treatment.  These concerns serve as a call to action for those who feel a responsibility to care for the most weak and vulnerable members of society.

According to the Israeli human rights organization, B’Tselem, as of the end of March 2015, 184 Palestinian minors were held in Israeli custody.   Furthermore, as B’Tselem notes, “the military law applied in the West Bank…denies them the protections accorded to minors under both international and Israeli ...

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