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Press Releases written by Voice
United Nations must emphasize women rights in the Post 2015 development framework, urged Meher Afroz Chumki, State Minister, Women and Child Affairs of Bangladesh. She also demanded that government should include gender equality and women rights as priority area in new framework. United Nations is preparing a new development framework with its member states as the Millenium Development Goal (MDGs) will get end in 2015.
The State Minister attended the roundtable titled `Post Development Framework: Women’s Rights and Participation’ on 17th May at Channel I premises in Dhaka, organized by a rights based development research organization VOICE and Shaptahik while it was moderated by Golam Mortuza, editor of Shaptahik .
Speakers stated that the United Nations has been reviewing the impact of the Millennium Development Goals and preparing post 2015 development framework while women’s rights need to get more focus. It is time for the government of Bangladesh, to strive for new goals. These goals should guarantee not just a decent living wage, but also equality between women and men, a voice in the political and economic decision making, and a right to live dignified lives.
Different organisations formed a human chain in front of National Press Club in the city on Saturday with a call to end impunity.
They also demanded punishment of those responsible for attacking and killing journalists across the country.
Rights group VOICE, Media Watch, BMSF and International Press Institute (IPI) organised the event in observance of the International Day to End Impunity.
Journalists, human rights activists and members of the civil society participated in the programme.
The speakers urged the government to ensure justice for the journalists who were killed during professional duties.
They also demanded exemplary punishment of the killers of Sagar Sarwar, news editor at private TV station Maasranga, and his wife Meherun Runi, a senior reporter at ATN Bangla.
A total of 700 journalists were killed in last decade while 93 journalists and bloggers were killed alone till November in 2013 globally.
Executive Director of VOICE Ahmed Swapan Mahmud moderated the programme.
Among others, President of Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) Monjurul Ahsan Bulbul, President of Dhaka Union of Journalists Omar Faruk, General Secretary Jahangir Alam Pradhan, President of a faction of BFUJ Ruhul Amin Gazi, and Treasurer Khairuzzaman Kamal spoke.
[Dhaka, 23 Novemebr 2013] Rights group VOICE, Media Watch and International Press Institute (IPI) jointly organized a human chain in front of National Press Club in Dhaka today to mark the International Day to End Impunity. Speakers called to end Impunity and demanded to stop violence against journalists, bloggers, writers while urged to attain justice within the judicial system. In observance of International Day to End Impunity, journalists, human rights defenders and members of the civil society attended the human chain.
[Dhaka, 22 September 2013] Speakers told that the ICT Act (amendment) 2013 sharply conflicts with Bangladesh Constitution’s Article 39 and 43 which guarantee freedom of expression and right to privacy respectively. Terming it as a ‘black law’, speakers urged the government not to enact as a law. A press conference titled ‘ICT Act (Amendment) 2013: Challenges for Right to Privacy and Freedom of Expression’ was held by VOICE in the city’s national press club today while it was jointly collaborated with Bangladesh Manobadhikar Shangbadik forum, Campaign on Citizen’s Right to Information, Bangladesh ICT Journalist Forum, Somewherein.net Blog, Online Knowledge Society, Shushashoner Jonyo Procharabhijan (SUPRO) and School of Communication and Cultural Metaphysics.
Monjurul Ahsan Bulbul, CEO, Boishaki Television, Khairuzzaman Kamal, Executive Director, Bangladesh Manobadhikar Shangbadik Forum, Zakir Hossain, Executive Director of Nagorik Uddog and Convener of Campaign on Citizen Right to Information, Syeda Gulshan Ferdous Jana, Acting Managing Director, Somewherein.net Blog and, Farjana Akhter, Programme Coordinator, Voice spoke at the press briefing while Ahmed Swapan Mahmud, Executive Director of Voice moderated the session.
Statement: Proposed Amendments to the Information and Communication Technology Act Violates Privacy and Human Rights
Training workshop on `Privacy, Human Rights and Communication Surveillance: National Laws, Practices and Safeguards’
A day long training workshop on `Privacy, Human Rights and Communication Surveillance: National Laws, Practices and Safeguards’ has been held on 27 April 2013 at the CBCB (Catholic Bishops Conference of Bangladesh), Dhaka.
The workshop discussed the issues of privacy and communication surveillance along with the existing practices on legal and policy regulations to raise critical awareness and develop perspective with the human rights framework. It discussed how to build a broader constituency creating capacity and strengthening networking through raising voices to uphold privacy rights being critical on communication surveillance in Bangladesh.
Speakers on a public dialogue demanded not to control the Internet as proposed in the International Telecommunications Revisions to be presented in World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) in Dubai from 3-14 December. They also urged to the government and International Telecommunication Union to act in favor of Internet’s openness and uphold freedom of expression online.
The dialogue was held at the ERC auditorium of Institute of Engineers Bangladesh at Dhaka on Wednesday 28 November 2012. The event was jointly organized by a rights group VOICE and Internet Society Bangladesh Dhaka Chapter.
The dialogue was attended by former BTRC chairman Sayed Margub Morshed, Vice president of Internet Service Providers Association of Bangladesh Sumon Ahmed Sabir, president of Bangladesh Computer Society, Professor Dr. Mahfuj Islam, Dr. Syed Faisal Hasan president of Internet Society Bangladesh Dhaka chapter, executive director of VOICE Ahmed Swapan Mahmud, Research Fellow, Rezaur Rahman Lenin, Head of Alliance Somewherein net ltd. Syeda Gulshan Ferdous Jana, moderator Somewhreinblog, Sharat Chowdhury.
[Dhaka, 29 September 2012] Speakers urged the government of Bangladesh to ensure that the right to freedom expression and opinion is upheld on the Internet in a public dialogue held at Dhaka’s press club earlier today. Speakers included Afsan Chowdhury, executive editor of Bdnews24.com; Monjurul Ahsan Bulbul, editor in chief and CEO of Boishaki Television; Mostafa Jabber, IT specialist; Akhtaruzzaman Monju, chairman, ISP Association; Tahmina Rahman country director, Artcile-19; Seleem Samad, eminent journalist; and Golam Mortuza, editor, Saptahik. The dialogue on freedom of expression on the internet was organized by VOICE and Ahmed Swapan Mahmud, executive director of VOICE moderated the occasion.
Afsan Chowdhury stated that the internet is now a widespread medium of free expression and the State and other powers in society are increasingly fearful of the attention given to alternative views. He argued that internet freedom should not be restricted by any means whilst emphasizing that we must to educate all citizens to build a strong moral ground and respect for others in society. The proposed online media policy would hamper democratic practices and governance processes in the country, he concluded.
[Dhaka, 27 January 2012] `VOICE’ a media advocacy organization calls NGOs, civil society organizations and rights groups to observe Privacy Day (28 January) to uphold privacy and data protection.
We urge the government to ensure people’s right to privacy through building policy coherence and creating an independent privacy commission.
Any interception and surveillance of email, messaging, telephony involving recording the conversations of clients’ messages is illegal for any operator. “Privacy” itself is guaranteed under Article 39(2)(a) and Article 43 of the fundamental rights of the Bangladesh Constitution. Article 33(2)(a) entrenches “the right of every citizen to freedom of speech and expression” and Article 43 guarantees “the privacy of home and correspondence and communications”.
Privacy also guaranteed in Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
A perception study on privacy rights conducted recently by VOICE, shows that 83% respondents feel uneasy to share very personal information (e.g. sexual desire) to others while 79% identified income as their 2nd most priority issue that they do not want to disclose and 75% people do not like to share information about their own resources.52% of respondents think that information would be unsafe and to used for another purposes.
“International Campaign on Climate Refugees’ Rights” Demanded New Legal Institutional Framework at Durban UN Talks
[Durban, 6 December 2011] Speakers in a public dialogue said that climate change catastrophe not only pose mortal danger but also lead to the destruction of the means of livelihood which threat to millions of people in the global south to become refugee. Recent studies show that around 30 million people from the coastal areas of Bangladesh, 300 thousand from the Maldives, 10 million from Vietnam, 10 million from Mediterranean Egypt, and 600 thousand from Guyana will be displaced due to loss of land as a result of climate change effects.
The public dialogue organized by the International Campaign on Climate Refugees’ Rights (ICCR) is held at the University of KwaZulu-Natal today while the civil society groups urged the global leaders to form legal framework for the displaced victims--climate refugee.
Ahmed Swapan Mahmud, convenor of the Campaign said“a legal safeguard protocol should be in place to ensure the political, social, cultural and economic rights of the climate refugees by the international community presently meeting under the Conference of Parties (COP-17) here in Durban, South Africa”.