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International Day of Democracy 15th September – the global challenges after Afghanistan – INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES

Sep 7, 2021, 2:23 PM

International Day of Democracy 15th September – the global challenges after Afghanistan – INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES
The world is celebrating the International Day of Democracy on September 15 amid huge, global challenges for democracies. Not least, the costly retreat from Afghanistan has questioned the role of the West in promoting liberal democracy around the world.
  • Ahead of Democracy Day, Kevin Casas-Zamora, Secretary-General of the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA)is available for text and visual interviews on the future of democracy and its geopolitical challenges. Some of the issues he can discuss include:
     
    1. Promoting democracy after Afghanistan  Is there a role for the West in promoting democracy or has the setback in Afghanistan showed the limits of government influence in the affairs of other states? Are there lessons from other countries, from Sudan and Nepal, about how to promote democracy globally? What is the future of the millions of dollars in electoral assistance funded by Western governments? The Biden administration is preparing in early December a summit to promote democracy. Has Afghanistan undermined Washington’s authority to rally governments around democracy?
    2. Learning from the pandemic – The Afghanistan exit already comes amid difficult times for democracy. The Covid-19 pandemic has seen the erosion of civil liberties, the postponement of elections and the spread of disinformation campaigns. What needs to be done to support democracy around the world in the face of authoritarian headwinds? How long will restrictions on civil liberties that were imposed during lockdowns remain?
    3. Bright lights amid the gloom – In many parts of the world, democracy is proving more resilient than doomsters have predicted. Many parliaments have checked governments executive power. Many governments have innovated electoral and democratic processes to cope with the pandemic. Pro-democracy movements have braved repression in places like Belarus, Myanmar and Cuba, while global social movements tackling climate change and racial inequalities have emerged.
    4. The geopolitics of democracy  Has the Afghanistan exit handed over the geopolitical initiative to authoritarian governments like Russia and China? Will other fragile democracies around the world lose any trust they had in the United States? Do geopolitics really matter or is the real struggle democracy’s ability to work against itself or to reform itself?
     
    BIOGRAPHY - Until recently, Kevin Casas-Zamora was a member of Costa Rica’s Presidential Commission for State Reform and managing director at Analitica Consulting (Analitica Consultores). Previously, he was Costa Rica’s Second Vice President and Minister of National Planning; Secretary for Political Affairs at the Organization of American States; Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution; and National Coordinator of the United Nations Development Program’s Human Development Report.
     
    OTHER INTERNATIONAL IDEA EXPERTS -  IDEA gathers a host of specialists to offer commentary on key issues for democracies around the world, whether on issues of minority rights, climate change and expert knowledge on Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Europe and Latin America. Our research and commentary have appeared in more than 600 media outlets since the start of the pandemic.     Our Global Monitor of COVID-19’s Impact on Democracy and Human Rights, funded by the European Union, also offers a digital tool to monitor how the pandemic is impacting the democratic credentials of 162 countries.
    More information about the intergovernmental organization International IDEA can be accessed here -- International IDEA at a Glance fact sheet
     
    For interviews, please contact Jose Bonito,  on jose.bonito@worldmediawire.com  Tel: +44 7528 016 224
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