On January 1st this year, the Message of Pope Francis for the World Day for Peace has once again placed migrants and refugees in the center. Coinciding with it, dozens of people of sub-Saharan origin arrived on our coasts, who had to spend the night outdoors in the streets of Madrid. The sign of citizenship to take a step forward and open their homes has made who have the responsibility in terms of refuge and reception within the Administrations blush.
Trafficking in human beings has increased parallel to the phenomenon of migration. It constitutes a serious violation of Human Rights, which makes it one of the most shameful crimes of the 21st century, since it deprives millions of people of their dignity. The exploitation of human beings is very lucrative for organized criminal groups. The World Day of Prayer and Reflection against Trafficking of 2018 has also highlighted migratory flows: "Migrate without trafficking. Yes to freedom, not to slavery”.
The annual meeting of the General Secretaries of Justice and Peace of Europe was held in Belfast from 9th to 11st February. It dealt with the danger of the emergence of a "hard" border between Northern and Southern Ireland, after the Brexit. Participants adopted a statement on the critical situation in northern Syria. This year's Concerted Action calls for strengthening the democratic commitment of citizenship, reintroducing humility in public life, working to promote fair structures, always based on dialogue and the preferential option for the poorest and most vulnerable people.
2018 is a year of celebrations in Justice and Peace of Spain because several commissions turn 50 years old. On February 24th, the events of the Justice and Peace anniversary of Barcelona began. It was the first Commission created in Spain. From the 13rd to the 15th of April the 50th anniversary of the General Commission for Justice and Peace of Spain will be held in Palencia. The acts will conclude at the Justice and Peace Assembly of Europe, which will take place in Barcelona, from September 28th to October 1st. We hope you to participate.
On November 10 and 11of 2017 the International Conference "Perspectives for a world free of nuclear weapons and for integral development" was held, organized by the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. The disarmament group of Spanish Commission for Justice and Peace attended the Conference.
Spain will be assessed about Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ESCR) on March 21 and 22 in Geneva. We will be present in the exam, defending a report, made from the DESC platform of Spain, which is an alternative report to the one presented by the Spanish Government. We continue with enthusiasm in Connect yourself for Justice, working on the last point of the green decalogue, which proposes us to direct the technique at the service of another type of progress, more sustainable and integral.
Isabel Cuenca Anaya