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EPD sends out a weekly democracy news update, Beyond Ballots. The updates cover democracy in the news as well as academic and policy-relevant articles on democracy assistance and development. Here you can find our latest edition and archives. You can subscribe by typing your email address into the box on the right hand side of this page.

14 November

The Nigerian Department of State Services fired live bullets at protesters, who had gathered in Abuja to demand the release of a journalist turned politician who has been jailed on treason charges.

The Lebanese army has reported that a local political party official was shot dead by soldiers who were trying to open a road, which had been closed by protesters in southern Beirut, marking the first death of the protests that have been going on for almost an entire month.

As the increasingly violent protests in Hong Kong are close to entering their sixth month, protesters have now taken over the Chinese University of Hong Kong refusing to let police take control of it, and have resorted to arm themselves with unconventional weapons like bows.

Richard Youngs analyses all the major recent protests that have been happening worldwide, which he attributes to a continuation of previous movements, and explores the immediate aftermath of the protests, a period which he deems vitally important.

Mitchell Orenstein, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, analyses the social impact of the transition period following the fall of the Berlin Wall, and points out two conflicting narratives, one being more popular in the West and the other in Russia and Eastern Europe.

In this Crisis Group piece, Alan Keenan concludes that Sri Lanka’s upcoming elections may bring about renewed violence if presidential front runner Gotabaya Rajapaksa were elected, as many fear he would threaten the fragile democratic progress made after decades of war.

Episode 9 – The Dictator’s Playbook

Journalist Maria Ressa sits down with Humane Tech host Tristan Harris, to reveal through her story, how an aspiring despot can use social media to spread falsehoods, sow confusion, intimidate critics and subvert democratic institutions, and how Silicon Valley can prevent it.

The EU’s Role in Protecting Democracy, Human Rights, the Rule of Law and Civic Space: A United Nations Perspective – 6 December, Brussels, Belgium

Birgit Van Hout, Regional Representative for Europe, UN Human Rights (OHCHR), will give a lecture on the role the EU can play both within its own region and globally to help better protect democracy, human rights, the rule of law and civic space.

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