2019 was an eventful year in terms of nonviolent resistance and people power! In Sudan, people demanded the resignation of their government and the 30 year-old regime toppled. (See more about NVI’s involvement below) In Algeria, Iraq and Hong Kong, relentless protests have pressured regimes to accommodate to their demands and protests continue. Anger over specific pieces of legislation and demands for greater reform occurred in India, Bulgarians, and Indonesia. Massive protests against society's growing inequality and corruption among government officials have occurred in Honduras, Iran, Romania, France, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Guatemala, Chile, Peru, Nicaragua, Haiti, Colombia, Ecuador, and Argentina. Minority groups such as West Papuans, Kashmiri's, Uighurs, indigenous peoples, Palestinians, and Sahrawis cry out for attention and change. And all around the world, nonviolent movements led by 350.org, Fridays for Future, and Extinction Rebellion, have emerged to draw attention to the severity of climate change and the fossil fuel industry's destruction of our planet.
As an organization, Nonviolence International seeks to promote nonviolent solutions by providing educational materials and training programs As a backbone organization for people power campaigns, we provide fiscal sponsorship for many groups such as the International Action Network on Small Arms, Holy Land Trust, We Are Not Numbers, and Gaza Freedom Flotilla. In addition, Control Arms, a civil society network we sponsor that seeks to implement the international Arms Trade Treaty earned a spot on the shortlist of the Peace Research Institute Oslo for the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize. In May, the Center for Jewish Nonviolence led a group of 45 Jewish activists from across North America to Israel-Palestine to stand in coresistance with their Palestinian and Israeli partners. Over nine days, they learned, worked, and connected with partners in the South Hebron Hills, East Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Ramallah, Givat Amal, and Lyd/Lod. And throughout 2019, our partners at Holy Land Trust have engaged in their Home Rebuilding 2019 Campaign to help Palestinians in the West Bank who have lost their homes to Israeli demolitions.
We have been working diligently to prepare our Digital Library of Nonviolent Resistance for a launch in 2020, the world's largest collection of nonviolence training materials. Collaborating with Rutgers University International Institute for Peace (IIP), this digital library provides free online access to a digital collection of training manuals and related material, such as reports on training workshops, tools, exercises, preparatory material for campaigns, and legal and direct action handouts. With its launch occurring this past November, we hope our archive can be used by educational institutions and civil society networks engaged in the training of nonviolent resistance for decades to come.
Alongside our larger organizational initiatives, Nonviolence International has continued to provide direct training and support to students and proponents of nonviolent resistance all around the world. In March of this year, our founder Mubarak Awad traveled to Israeli to teach a course on nonviolent studies at Haifa University. During his time there, he published an op-ed in The Jersusalem Post which detailed steps Palestinians and Israelis could take in the April elections to promote peace between the two groups.
At around the same time, our Executive Director Michael Beer was working tirelessly to support the nonviolent campaign in Sudan to help the country transition to a system of democratic governance after enduring ex-President Omar al-Bashir's autocratic rule for 30 years. Nonviolence International helped democratic opposition leaders by providing webinars and consultations regarding nonviolent resistance and the tactics used to succeed by such means. On at least four occasions since April when ex-President al-Bashir was removed from power, Michael Beer discussed strategies that the campaign could employ to keep up their resistance to the Transitional Military Council such as the dynamics that go into launching a successful general strike. Michael's webinars were extremely impactful, with more than 250,000 views, as the Sudanese people rewarded him and other friends and allies of Nonviolence International with a mural dedicated to them in downtown Khartoum.
With so much great work done this year, there is even more work to be done next year! We thank you for your support of our organization and hope to continue to lead the way in promoting and nonviolent culture and nonviolent resistance to solve the conflicts of our world.