Democratic life was reaffirmed in 2015, with electoral processes seeing many countries renew governments and parliaments. In Tunisia, a conciliatory Quartet facilitated political transition via elections and received the Nobel Peace Prize.
However, not everything was orderly in the world: assassinations or incarcerations of opposition leaders and raids on their parties, attacks on demonstrators, suspensions or controls of the internet and social networks – these cannot be ignored and, thus, there is still a long way to go. In some cases, the range of political parties doesn’t satisfy everyone, with independent candidates or political movements arising to seek to fill the void.
The economy moves at a slow pace; insufficient growth leaves little room to improve quality of life, employment and pensions. It seems as though locked in competitiveness that reduces the prices of supplies and costs of salaries; in the end, it pauperises employees and degrades their purchasing power. Does such competitiveness, benefitting only big business, make any sense? Corruption scandals are not limited to public sectors, but also encompass private companies and institutions, like football’s international governing body.
Thousands of people, fearful for their lives, flee in search of refuge in other cultures, provoking mixed reactions in transited and recipient countries
This year has also been characterised by violence, with outrageous expressions of religious and ethnic radicalisation. Beheadings, burnings, explosions, terrorist attacks, kidnappings and mass executions have ended innocent lives. The security strategies have been unable to prevent such violence, which tests authorities. Violence is also manifested in internal, racial or geopolitical wars of interest.
Thousands of people, fearful for their lives, flee in search of refuge in other cultures, provoking mixed reactions in transited and recipient countries. Finally, will those who have been displaced integrate into host societies actively, or only marginally, in ghettos? It’s important to mention that the aggressors were born in the same countries they attacked.
Diplomacy wins. There is a nuclear understanding between the Group 5 + 1 and Iran. The Americas are integrated, with relations between the North and the Caribbean reestablished. Greece is taking austerity measures and overcoming the impasse with the support of Germany and France.
Climate consensus has been achieved in Paris; Pope Francis has paved the way with a previous Encyclical and also established relations between the Vatican and Palestine, travelled to the Balkans, the Caribbean, North and South America and Africa, carrying messages of peace, for a more humane economy, denouncing corruption and sanctifying peaceful martyrs.