The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update September 7-13


Miriam, human rights defender, 1947-2012

In our featured image above Mercy Corps emergency responder Javier assesses needs in Cap Haitien, Haiti.  Mercy Corps is also active in Nepal, USA and other emergency sites. ALL PHOTOS: Ezra Millstein/Mercy Corps






This week we call your attention to the Mercy Corps a charity that helps out suffering people world-wide and is actively helping hurricane victims in the Caribbean. They have an excellent record of efficiency and use of resources. Please donate to them.


Indigenous tribes do not simply die out. They are killed by the actions of so-called civilized nations. Survival International provides a long list of cases in which a letter from you can and will make a difference. Please open this link and write at least one letter. This link will be a permanent feature on our blog and we would be grateful if you gave it a bit of attention each week. We suggest going down the list in the order given. The letters are pre-written for you. All you need to do is send them. It would be nice also if a donation to Survival International could be forthcoming. Tribal  people suffer from a variety of forms of discrimination, such as attacks uncontacted tribes. Uncontacted tribes are the most vulnerable peoples on the planet. They face catastrophe unless their land is protected. We’re doing everything we can to secure their land for them, and to give them the chance to determine their own futures. Please act for them.


When uncontacted tribes’ rights are respected, they continue to thrive.


We have added this section to the blog in order to join the struggle against slavery worldwide. This week we refer you to the the ILO’s Protocol on Forced Labor which is all about modern slavery. We call your attention to the anti slavery campaign. There you can sign up for action updates.The importance of checking your sellers’ supply chains cannot be overemphasized.

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Find a campaign to work for. Light must be made to shine in the darkest of places. We invite you to join Freedom United and to participate in the abolitionist movement against modern slavery.

Help End Forced Marriage in Lebanon


Momentum is growing to repeal laws that enable convicted rapists to marry their victims to avoid punishment. As well as the horrors endured by victims, this law means many women and girls where these laws exist are then forced into marriage against their will.




Urgent Action Victory! Palestinian Circus Performer Released

Palestinian circus performer and teacher Mohamed Faisal Abu Sakha was released on 30 August from Ketziot Prison in Israel. He spent nearly two years in administrative detention without being charged or tried. He has now returned home to his family in Jenin in the occupied West Bank. Thank you to all those who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.


Urgent Action Victory! Security Measures For Defender Implemented

In recent weeks authorities have implemented some security measures for Mario Luna, human rights defender and leader of the Indigenous Yaquí community in Sonora state, northern Mexico, following an incident on 27 June where assailants burned the car of the wife, Anahí Ochoa. During July and August Amnesty International and other organizations placed pressure on authorities to achieve advances in his protection measures.

Mario Luna Romero and Victoria Anahí Ochoa Domínguez have suffered a series of attacks over the years, including his politically-motivated imprisonment, assault against family members and, most recently, an arson attack on Anahí Ochoa’s vehicle at their home on 27 June. For the first time, the government of Sonora state and the Guaymas municipal government have implemented some measures to protect Mario Luna and his colleagues in this context, who are all traditional Indigenous Yaquí authorities in the town of Vicam in Sonora state. For security reasons, it is not possible to disclose which protection measures have been taken and which ones remain outstanding.

Amnesty International will continue to work with Mario Luna, Anahí Ochoa and other Indigenous Yaquí leaders in order to ensure all the protection measures that have been committed to are implemented and the attack investigated. Any follow up actions will be shared on Amnesty International’s online platform on attacks against human rights defenders working on issues of territory, land and the environment in the Americas here: .

No further action is required of the UA network at this time. Many thanks to all who sent appeals.


Urgent Action Update: Detainee Held Incommunicado Again

After being disappeared for 23 days, Raúl Isaías Baduel is once again being held incommunicado at the National Intelligence Service facilities in Caracas, denied access to his family and lawyers. His family is concerned for his physical and mental integrity.



Urgent Action: Activists Held Incommunicado May Face Life In Prison

Three Vietnamese activists, Trương Minh Đức, Nguyễn Trung Tôn, and Phạm Văn Trội, are being held incommunicado at B14 prison in Hà Nội after their arrests on 30 July 2017. They have a range of pre-existing health conditions that require treatment and face a sentence of up to life imprisonment or capital punishment.



Urgent Action: Chechen Man’s Whereabouts In Russian Unknown

Imran Salamov is a 39-year old Chechen man who was forcibly returned from Belarus to Russia on 5 September. His whereabouts are currently unknown and he is at risk of torture and other ill-treatment.



14-year-old boy tortured to confess: Aser Mohamed


Egypt’s National Security Agency subjected 14-year-old Aser Mohamed to enforced disappearance for 34 days. The boy claims that he was tortured and ill-treated to confess to offenses he did not commit. He is at risk of an unfair trial based on his “confessions” obtained under torture. If convicted he could face up to 15 years imprisonment.

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