When soft power is spent: Gaza, Ukraine, and Europeans’ standing in the Arab world

In an article published by the European Council on Foreign Relations, FairSquare director James Lynch argues that European policies on Gaza have caused possibly irreversible damage to their soft power in the Arab world.

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Thirteen Years After Mubarak’s Ouster, Unprecedented Repression and Economic Instability in Egypt

FairSquare has joined 18 Egyptian and international NGOs in our unceasing solidarity with the Egyptian people’s unmet demands for “bread, freedom, and social justice”, thirteen years after the ousing of Hosni Mubarak.

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UAE: Laying of mass charges against political prisoners during COP28 “beggars belief”

News that during its hosting of the COP28 climate talks, the UAE laid new terrorism charges against 87 people, including the country’s most high-profile political prisoners, has been greeted with shock.

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Manchester’s political leaders should use influence to call for release of detained UAE activists

A coalition of five human rights NGOs has urged Manchester City Council to make a public call on the government of the United Arab Emirates to release Ahmed Mansoor and others in the UAE who have been unfairly imprisoned for expressing criticism of its government. 

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Urgent appeal to UN on case of Alaa Abd El-Fattah

FairSquare has joined 33 other human rights organisations in writing to the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (UNWGAD) to consider and announce their opinion on Alaa Abd El-Fattah’s case at the earliest opportunity.

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Exporting Authoritarianism: new UAE briefing

FairSquare today released a briefing paper examining how the UAE has used its oil and gas revenues to finance an interventionist and ruinous foreign policy, most notably in the Middle East and North Africa. 

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Five year anniversary vigil for Jamal Khashoggi

On 2 October, FairSquare will join partner organisations ALQST for Human Rights, English PEN, and RSF UK, in holding a candle-lit vigil for Jamal Khashoggi outside the Saudi Arabian embassy in London, five years after his state-sponsored murder. The vigil will mark Jamal’s life and legacy, and support ongoing calls for justice.

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Climate movement must be aware of the threats the UAE poses ahead of COP28

A trio of human rights organisations today released a new briefing that looks to highlight the threats that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) poses to the aims of the climate justice movement in advance of the country’s hosting of COP28.

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100+ UK Parliamentarians write to Foreign Office on case of Alaa Abd el-Fattah

A letter signed by more than 100 MPs and members of the House of Lords was today submitted to the UK Foreign Secretary, James Cleverly, to urge fresh approaches on the case of British-Egyptian pro-democracy writer Alaa Abd el-Fattah.

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Lack of civic leadership has enabled Manchester and Newcastle sportswashing projects

FairSquare report provides further evidence of the harms of state ownership of football clubs

A new report published today finds that political leaders in Manchester and Newcastle have not only declined multiple opportunities to use their positions of influence to express criticism of serious and systematic human rights abuses in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, but have effectively assisted these two deeply abusive and profoundly anti-democratic states’ efforts to set up ‘soft power enclaves’ in cities with proud histories of protest and dissent. 

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