Cluster Clamp Down
In 2008, Avaaz fought to ban cluster munitions -- toy-like explosives that kill curious children long after conflicts end. Cluster bomb survivor Branislav Kapetanovic sent a video appeal to Avaaz members prompting 164,272 email messages to government leaders urging a global ban free of loopholes and delays. More than 100 nations signed a strong treaty, and advocates at the talks told us that Avaaz members had made a real difference.
Three years later when cynical arms-producing nations tried to subvert the ban, we were ready. We partnered with our friends at the Cluster Munition Coalition (CMC) and more than half a million of us stood with the victims of cluster bombs and told governments to vote their conscience. They did; the ban was upheld, and our contribution was decisive, according to our partners at the CMC.
End the War on Drugs
The war on drugs has cost billions in tax money, funneled trillions of dollars into organized crime, cost countless lives, and achieved zero results. But finally, after years of abhorrent waste, a group of former presidents formed The Global Commission on Drugs, speaking out for reform. When the politicians claimed they couldn’t find public support for such change Avaaz took action, with over 600,000 members calling for an end to the war on drugs in just one week!
Avaazers helped break the taboo -- resulting in over 2,000 media articles written, and a campaign in which the ex-presidents repeatedly turned to our community for help, using the signatures of Avaaz members as proof of the public demand for an end to the war. Thanks to our community a real and desperately needed debate has finally begun.
Peace in the Middle East
A peaceful, just, two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict -- and respect for human rights on both sides -- has the support of public opinion and Avaaz members around the world. In support of that goal, Avaaz made a video. Viewed more than 2.5 million times across nine different language versions, Stop the Clash was voted YouTube's Political Video of the Year for 2007 and has been televised around the world. Click here to watch it.
Peace for Iraqis, by Iraqis
The very first Avaaz campaign brought 87,000 "virtual marchers" against military escalation in Iraq to a peaceful protest in Washington, DC. Avaaz, in consultation with local members and international experts, developed a "NEW" plan to end the war: all-party negotiations, with empowered international mediators, and withdrawal of US troops on a timeline matching the Iraqi people's wishes. The new plan was delivered in May 2007.
We also worked with Sunni, Shiite, and Kurdish parliamentarians to build an international campaign supporting Iraq's right to determine the future of its oil reserves -- rather than accept the dictates of outside governments and corporations.