Newsletter Anno 4, n. 16 - 11 ottobre 2006

Anno 4, n. 16 - 11 ottobre  2006

A cura di Gabriele Sospiro
Con la collaborazione di:
Isabel Davila (ID)
Gulsah Biraderler (GB)
Radost  Peeva (RP)
Paolo Sospiro (PS)



Lentamente ma con il passo ormai sempre più rapido ha ripreso l'attività del
nostro circolo. Venerdì scorso abbiamo ospitato il gruppo musicale touraeg
IMARAN proveniente dall'oasi di Djanet in Algeria. Presto organizzeremo una
serata turca e poi un'altra tutta dedicata all'unico Black President,
l'indimenticabile Fela Anikulapo Kuti  di cui l'anno prossimo ricorre il
decennale della morte. Sempre in tema di black president, stiamo definendo
la presentazione della biografia di Nelson Mandela pubblicata proprio
recentissimamente. E poi ancora la riorganizzazione del nostro sito con
alcune novità e maggiori possibilità di interagire con noi (sempre che lo
desideriate..). E poi ancora.... viaggi in Etiopia per natale e Nairobi per
il forum sociale mondiale a gennaio 2007. E poi ancora....  vi faremo

Il Centro di Documentazione e Ricerca per la Cittadinanza Attiva è aperto il
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For contacts: +39/071/2072585

I come from Bulgaria, which is a small country situated in Southern Europe.
I live in Sofia, which is the  capital of Bulgaria. When I finished my
secondary school in Sofia at the age of 16 I decided to go to the United
Kingdom to continue my education there. I entered a Business school in
London for 3 years. Afterwards I was accepted at University to study
Economics with International Relations. At the moment I am in my second year
of my degree, I have one more year to graduate. The University is in a small
town called Bradford, which is a very international place. There are many
people from different places which creates a very friendly atmosphere to
Last year, at the start of my second year at Bradford University I decided
that I want to spend one year away from study for work experience. I wanted
to become a volunteer for an organisation which offers opportunities for
young people to deal with issues close to what I study. I wanted to
experience something different, to interact with people from  different
countries and spend time abroad. That's when I found about EVS. I got in
contact with the sending organisation "Everything is possible" which was
situated very near to where I live. They explained to me what EVS was about
and it was exactly what I was looking for. I started searching for projects
close to my interest and to what I study. I was searching for projects in
all countries in Europe, but I was hoping that I can get a project in Italy.
I got in contact with Circolo Africa, which was looking for a volunteer and
I applied for the project they offered me.
It has been great experience until now to find out so much about EVS and
different opportunities it offers to young people. I am very happy to have
found Circolo Africa because my project is so closely related to what I
study and I believe it will be a very interesting experience for me.


My name is Isabel Davila, I arrive to Ancona the first of September of 2006
to begin an EVS Project called Making Future Together, which is developed by
Circolo Culturale Africa and stands for the inclusion of the African Culture
into the European society.
Since the beginning of 2006 I've worked as an Associate Editor for an
activist magazine based in Canada, called Adbusters.  This magazine tries to
become into a real source of information and a media channel without any
profitable interest.  Also intents to communicate to the world the real
condition of many continents about their geopolitical, environmental,
social, and artistic situation.
I come from a Latin American country, Ecuador, where the inequality indexes
are extremely high, for this reason I decided to dedicate my time in the
research of the best alternatives to improve the terrible conditions of the
population of these countries.
In the past three years I've travelled inside a few different Latin American
countries, and I've had the opportunity to understand through a closer
perspective the geopolitical and socioeconomic situation of Chile,
Argentina, Bolivia and Peru.  From this experience I realize that it was
important to learn the design and development of social projects from a
solid organization.  For this reason I arrived to Ancona to learn from this
organization and to provide with my help in order to built a better
integration of the African immigrants society and Europe

I spend three days at Fiera di Ancona, where there were many enthusiastic
organisations, which  cause is to raise awareness of different issues
connected with the environment and the political world.
It was a very interesting experience to see that so many people are involved
in causes that benefit the entire humanity. Issues such as the protection of
the environment for example; it is a major issue that is important for all
of us, since we need to be aware of the changes that are occurring due to
our - human activity. Many organizations work hard to find solutions to
problems that are caused by developing industrial activities, such as
pollution,  food contamination, nature soil.
In our daily activities we do not stop and think about the environment. This
is why, it is vital to organize such events to raise awareness of what
surrounds us. The importance of showing that there are people who greatly
contribute towards finding new ways to protect the environment, in the name
of better and healthier living for us and our generations.
Another thing that impressed me was the high number of organizations that
excessively promote peace and equality. They were there to declare
themselves as open minded, bounded to their idea of promoting peace in the
whole of the world. I was very interested to meet people like this, who are
talking of equality and who  are willing to show that they may move on from
their past,  political or cultural differences, and become open and willing
to evolve into peaceful and prosperous nations for their people, enemies,
neighbors and so on. Speaking for Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia,
organizations were promoting the goodness of their countries, which shows
their solidarity and willingness to reveal the best from their history,
present and initiatives for the future in the name of peace between nations.
They were also many organizations that represented the Balkans, nations that
have suffered from many terrible wars between neighbor countries that have
taken the lives of many of their people. They were there to represent their
countries and show that they are able to move on from their past and look
into the future with more hope and belief of more peace and understanding.


In the city of Ancona, in the region of Marche, this past 6, 7 and 8 of
October, took place the conference and show room for The Eco and Equo 2006.
Which stands for the principles of developing an Eco energetic plan for the
region and the basis for a sustainable development within the country and
the rest of the world.
This meeting brought to the community of the city of Ancona, many
perspective of the new procedures in order to participate in sustainable
development for the region of la Marche.  A dominant objective within the
public policies of the European countries has been the achievement of
economic growth. The issue of sustainability has serious implications for
this policy objective. Pursuit of economic growth is concerned solely with
the present, whilst sustainability is concerned with ensuring the current
generation meets its present needs without threatening future generations
ability to do likewise. National accounts, such as gross domestic product,
can measure healthy economies, but they can not measure sustainability.
This was the aim of all the participants and the organizations involved, and
all the meeting presented several alternatives to encourage the community
and the public sector into the planning and the commitment for a sustainable
development inside Italy and within the commercial and social relation with
other countries of the world.
This organizations that are actually participating at a global basis, are
encouraging the society to cooperate in the social and environmental field
of commerce.  The products offered for the community were compatible with
the environmental responsibility and they are giving the consumers the
possibility to access into a more natural and healthy consumption of goods
and food that at the same time will benefit the economical growth of many
developing countries involved.


This week all world media talked about a trial in Turkey. A prize-winning
Turkish author Elif Safak had been accused of insulting Turkish national
identity due to her book about mass killing of Armenians in the final years
of Ottoman Empire in 1915. Turkey rejects  claims of Armenia that calls
killings as genocide. Turkey expresses that 300,000 Armenians and at least
as many Turks died in civil strife when Armenians took up arms for
independence in eastern Anatolia and sided with invading Russian troops.
The trial took part on 21st September in Turkey and was seen by EU as a test
of freedom of speech and human rights in Turkey. Safak risked up to three
years in jail for "denigrating Turkish national identity" in her book, "The
Bastard of Istanbul". She judged under the scope of Article 301 of Turkey's
penal code, but at first session the judges cleared Safak in Istanbul. This
trial had vital importance for Turkish people. Since she became candidate of
EU membership, she has entered in a reform process and the trial of Safak
was watched by all world and EU Commission,  on 8th November, the European
Commission will issue a report on Turkey's progress, which is expected to be
critical of the reform process. Trial was not just important because of EU,
but also it had vital importance for all Turkish nation who support EU
membership or not, but want to have reforms in Turkey.
And as a young Turkish  person living in abroad, I watched this trial
excitedly. For me, this trial was important not just for EU membership but
for future of my country. This trial was opened because of the claim that
the writer Elif Safak denigrated Turkish National Identity. But in my
opinion opening of this trial denigrated Turkish National Identity in
reality more than Safak. Turkey had coups in history and after coup data on
12 September 1980, we have had reform processes to be more democratic. In
the region of Middle East, Turkey is seen as a good example to be Muslim and
democratic at the same time. And membership of European Union is seen as an
opportunity to have reforms,  to be more democratic, to be respected to
human rights and to have freedom of speech by people. Last days, this trial
was on the top agenda of world media and it was written that Turkish
nationalists made protestations against Safak and wanted her to judge. I
think it is easy to put people in anger and provoked them. I hope all
Turkish nation who loves that country, leftist, nationalist, rightist or who
have different ideologies understand that these reactions damage Turkey,
this shows Turkey as country of prohibitions. After trial, Prime Minister
Erdogan who sent supporting messages to Safak said that he was happy due to
result, but I think this is not enough and he should send parliament the
scheme of amendment of article 301. I believe that if we are able to discuss
about issues in a respective way without rejection of history, culture and
religion, we can live together in happy societies.


The EU's fundamental aim for the Western Balkans region (Serbia, Montenegro,
Croatia, Albania, Macedonia and Bosnia & Herzegovina)  is to create a
situation where military conflict is unthinkable - expanding to the region:
peace, solidarity, stability, prosperity and freedom, established over the
last 50 years by the EU.
For the countries in that region that have made sufficient progress in terms
of political and economic reform and administrative capacity, the next step
is a formal contractual relationship with the EU. This takes the form of a
tailor-made Stabilization and Association Agreement. To date, Croatia, the
former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Albania have signed such
agreements, while Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina have
launched SAA talks.
EU leaders granted Croatia official candidate status in June 2004, and
accession negotiations were originally scheduled to start on 17 March 2005.
However, the launch of talks was put off on 16 March pending Zagreb's "full
co-operation" with the UN war crimes tribunal. Finally, on 3 October 2005,
Zagreb received a green light for accession talks to begin. Croatia, a
country formally part of Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, is now
granted an official candidate status.
Croatia is a country of about 4.5 million inhabitants (2006), has a stable
market economy and better statistical indicators than some of the countries
that joined the EU in 2004. However its political situation is difficult,
due to its recent historical background, which is their main obstacle for
hopeful EU membership.
As a result of the dissolution of Yugoslavia, Croatia aimed to create an
independent state for Croats. However this was not an easy task following
TITO's 40 years of integration of the population of all the republics part
of former Yugoslavia.  He managed to sustain peace in the region this way
throughout all his time as Head of Government. After his death this proved
to be devastating. Croats fought against the Serbs who were excessively
seeking new boundaries in parts of Croatia, where they were a majority. This
created big political crisis and a war erupted as a result. It was a bitter
conflict from 1991 to 1995. This war was shocking because of its brutality
and because it was between people, who were once living together as one.
Croatia's negotiation talks for EU membership have been postponed many
times, the reason for this being their inadequate co-operation with the
International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) to
co-operate in giving in the names of persons responsible for war crimes.
However they have now started vast negotiations and Croatia is expected to
be a EU member in 2009 if everything goes as planned.
The EU mission is to maintain peace in the Western Balkans, following their
violent and bitter conflicts. EU is continuing comprehensive negotiations
with the countries of the West Balkans in order to keep its presence there
and ensure that peace can be sustained. Croatia is their main 'window' from
which they can keep an eye on the developments taking place. The EU is
promoting vast reforms that Croatia must take into consideration in order
for a successful EU accession and ensuring that Zagreb is fully cooperating
with the international war crimes tribunal in The Hague.


This project was based on the beautiful landscape of the Mediterranean coast
in France.  Only ten minutes from San Rafael  ( France) was placed the
camping La Velee du Paradis.  We were 18 volunteers from Italy, France,
Georgia and Russia, and since the beginning we knew this was going to be an
unforgettable experience.
Every morning we started our activities.  At first we needed to get to know
each other, so we practiced some activities in order to introduce ourselves
and our nationalities; later on we started working every morning and every
evening in the development of alternatives to improve the lifestyle of the
European citizens towards a better understanding of the natural environment
inside the cities and also multiple ways to generate environmental
consciousness within the urban society.
This activities included the development of basic and simple tasks which
were design to facilitate an everyday living that will respect the natural
resources inside the cities.  In a few word we promoted the Eco-citizen
behavior in our modern society.
Besides the importance and the results obtained by this work on the
environmental awareness, we also had the opportunity to exchange very
valuable information about each of the countries involved.  In this way we
planned special evenings of each nationality that included traditional food,
music, dances and even some interesting ritual from this particular
This unforgettable experience put as all together into an incredible
opportunity to learn more from this places in Europe in a very profound and
friendly way.   We all explored into our similarities and also entered into
a whole new learning of the social, political, economical and environmental
circumstances of each of the countries involved.
During this two weeks we also had the chance to visit the city of Nice, also
in the Mediterranean coast, where we had an incredible experience inside the
lifestyle of a big city in France.
We walked over 7 hours inside downtown and discover many interesting and
beautiful scenarios with this ancient buildings that hold many years of
tradition and culture of a typical beach town.
The next day we went to Monaco where we were in fact overwhelmed by the
beauty and singularity of this fascinating place.
After two weeks of spending time together and sharing our common interest in
protecting the environment, we became very close friends, this particular
experience brought different nationalities together into an unforgettable
friendship and gave us the opportunity to learn from each other and respect
the background and traditions of this spectacular places.


"We have turned east, where the sun rises, and given our back to the west,
where the sun sets."
President Robert Mugabe
Zimbabwe, May 2005

The rapidly growing influence of China in the African continent has become
an important issue to aboard.  Even before the ending of the civil war in
Sierra Leone, many activities of economical development were taking place in
Africa from Chinese investors and companies.  This activities are still
growing everyday, and they are doubling each year.
So why Africa and particularly Sierra Leona has become a new ground for the
Chinese development?    Sierra Leona is one of the poorest countries in the
world, with sixty percent of young men unemployment, the brutal results of
the civil war, the lack of access to running water and the absence of
electricity resources.  It is particularly hard to find the benefits from
the British aid considering the real situation in this country.   Long ago,
most European countries abandoned Sierra Leona due to the difficulties of
improving the conditions of the habitants in this country, but since the
first China-African forum in the year 2000 a new alternative of development
was reborn for this continent.
The British say future aid will depend on Sierra Leone's progress towards
democracy, meanwhile China follows a policy of 'non-interference' in African
politics, and is not trying to tell any other country to be democratic, and
started to provide real benefits with no further "conditions".   On  the
site of an abandoned centre for disabled refugees, privately owned Chinese
companies, have created Industrial Entry Zone, workshops and factories; In
the city centre, a new multi-storey government office-block, military
headquarters, and refurbished stadium are all the work of the Chinese.
Second only to the United States in its oil consumption, China needs
Africa's resources to fuel its own phenomenal growth. In oil-rich countries
like Angola, Chad, Nigeria and Sudan, the influence of former colonial
powers is waning. The Chinese government imposes no political conditions on
African governments before signing contracts for exploration or production.
No Chinese pressure groups lobby Chinese oil companies about 'transparency'
or environmental damage. Not surprisingly, African governments welcome these
undemanding new investors.
These new actions that are considerably helping the social and economical
situation of this and other countries in Africa, have also to be determined
by the capacity of this continent to be prepared for this new growth
considering also the side effect of it.  This means that there are still
some points that need to be covered, as the environmental future situation
and the social development.   Maybe some guidelines on these matters will
provide also benefits for both sides and is necessary to stop treating the
African continent as the provider of wealth for other countries with no
intentions to return all the benefits that were took in the first place.
Sustainability is the only tool left for the developing countries.



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