56 recipients of the Right Livelihood Award from 35 countries signed a statement in which they condemn the killing of hundreds of children and innocent civilians in Gaza by the Israeli Defence Forces, the indiscriminate firing of rockets by Hamas against Israeli civilians, and mourn the continued suffering of Gaza’s inhabitants.
Read the statement.
Raji Sourani from Gaza (RLA 2013) comments on the escalating violence in the Middle East:
"Five weeks ago, I was full of hope. A new national unity government had been formed and it seemed that, for the first time in seven years Palestine would be united. We thought that with reconciliation – with Hamas removed from absolute power in the Gaza Strip – the closure might be lifted. But it did not happen."
"As the bombs fall, they add rubble to rubble; another generation of destruction."
"It is a constant cycle of illegality that has returned us to this point. Illegal attacks are used to justify illegal attacks, and on it goes. There are two constants: the continuous suffering of civilians, and total impunity for those suspected of committing war crimes." ...
Read the full text on the Irish Independent
Stephen Gaskin, iconic founder of The Farm, Tennessee, U.S., and founder of PLENTY International, died on Tuesday, 2 July, at the age of 79, according to US media.
In 1970, Stephen Gaskin together with hundreds of hippies set out on a road trip in the U.S. to finally settle down in Tennessee, where they built "The Farm". Stephen Gaskin also founded PLENTY International, a non-profit, non-sectarian agency for relief, development, environment, education and human rights. Founded in the early 70s, PLENTY was built on the principle that all people are members of the human family and that, if we protect and share the abundance of the earth, there is plenty for everyone.
Read the press release here.
The Right Livelihood Award Foundation mourns the death of SERVOL’s founder, Father Gerard Pantin, who passed away yesterday, June 23rd, at age 85.
SERVOL, the organisation he initiated in Trinidad was awarded a 1994 Right Livelihood Award for "fostering spiritual values, co-operation and family responsibility in building society."
Their work focuses on educating young people all around the country in a way that goes beyond the traditional school system, where literacy skills are just as important as family values. Fr Pantin was a Trinidadian Catholic priest, a member of the Holy Ghost Order and recipient of the Trinity Cross, now known as the Order of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. He was also a dedicated biology teacher, praised for his contribution to youth education and to the Trinidadian community in need. He made a lasting memory with his non-preaching approach, by listening to people before making assumptions about what they would need. His approach stood at the basis of the success of Servol’s education methods.
The city parliament voted in favour of a proposal to have Zurich join the blue community, an international network initiated by Maude Barlow (RLA 2005). After Lucerne and the capital Bern, Zurich would be the 3rd town in Switzerland to join the initiative.
As a blue community, Zurich would recognize water as a human right. It would also promote publicy owned and operated water and waste water services to ensure free access to drinking water. In addition, tap water would replace bottled water at public facilities.
Read the full story here (German).