This weekend a coterie of British businessmen including the arms dealer Rolls-Royce were jetted around Kazakhstan on board the private plane of its dictator Nursultan Nazarbayev, who has ruled the large Asian republic for 23 years by filtering oil revenues into his private bank account and cracking down on dissent.
The case for progressive internationalism is as strong as ever, but for us to have purchase on the issue of global poverty, Britain needs a presence in these countries beyond our Embassies or High Commissions.
In the last year, across the world, 30 per cent of internet users have faced increased restrictions on accessing content. The Association for Progressive Communications estimates that over 45 states have imposed some kind of online restrictions.
The sickening killing of 27 year old Mido Macia in South Africa this week brought to mind the white supremacist murders in the US which amounted to ‘lynchings’. This, together with the recent high profile rape and murder of Anene Booysen – and even the Oscar Pistorius case – point to a latent violence in the country that the government seems reluctant to tackle.