Democratic Unity and Solidarity
ADN has the firm stance that through democratic unity and solidarity that we have chance of halting the regress of democracy in the region. ADN will create platforms amongst democratic nations to strengthen democratic unity to work together to champion democracy and human rights. Democratic solidarity will be strengthened among civil society across Asia to open up more democratic space for fundamental rights to thrive.
Realizing half of the regions are in forefront of democracy backsliding, ADN campaign for democratic unity & solidarity programs, this is the priority need to undertake to move forward together in a strength to complement and support each other for the NGOs and like-minded government.
Why democratic unity? The democracy threat may seem isolated within national borders, but the symptoms of democratic decline have spread between neighboring countries. As we have clearly seen with the spread of restrictions on civil society activities through draconian non-governmental organisation (NGO) laws in Asia, authoritarian governments and even more democratic ones learn from each other. Through this collaboration and information sharing, democratic space has been significantly reduced. It is time for democratic nations to utilise the same strategy to communicate and collaborate with each other and influence good democratic governance policies, open up more democratic space and become models and champions of democracy in Asia.
Why democratic solidarity? Civil society has a significant role to play and is the heart of the movement to bring change and defend rights. When looking at the deterioration of democracy in Asia, civil society’s intervention to defend democracy can be vital. Asia has a vibrant and passionate civil society that is well organised and excellent in mobilizing for a cause. However, the challenge is that the diversity of movements and elements of civil society work in silos, even when overall we are working for the same cause. Therefore, democratic solidarity is important as it brings all thematic areas of focus, such as elections, human rights, land rights, media freedom, migrants’ issues and women’s rights, among others, to work in unison to maximise impact. When the movement works in unison, it will be difficult for bad leaders to ignore it.
How will democratic unity bring impact? Democratic unity is an initiative to push back and ignite that involves national and international cooperation to increase multi-sectoral, coordinated effort, foster strategic dialogue between state and non-state actors to respond to the democracy crisis and create a new democratic wave of democracy. Some of the keys steps that are being considered by ADN to promote democratic unity are as follows.
For the Y2019 – Y2020, ADN plan several activities to foster unity and solidarity through 5 major programs which are:
Hosting democratic unity meetings in South Asia and Southeast Asia to unite CSOs, and encouragement for future agenda setting of democratic promotion, and provide crisis response and solidarity to others in needs.
Promote closer relation CSOs and Media in democracy promotion by hosting media-NGOs roundtable discussion. This activity will be following by the establishment of the South Asia Media Online Network.
Develop information and communication strategy to more efficiently connect network and disseminate narrative of democracy.
Build allies among democratic government, and promotes strategic cooperation bilateral and multilaterally.
Addressing the democratic Challenges in the country needed mainly in Cambodia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and India, The Philippines, and Hong Kong.