Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam, a great human rights defender.
HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)
HIAS works around the world to protect refugees who have been forced to flee their homelands because of who they are, including ethnic, religious, and sexual minorities. For more than 130 years, HIAS has been helping refugees rebuild their lives in safety and dignity.
The killer in the Pittsburgh synagogue was targeting the work of HIAS> Please make a donation in the memory of the victims.
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. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.
THE STRUGGLE AGAINST SLAVERY
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 lend your voice to the call to the government of Australia to enact a strong and robust Modern Slavery Act that sets new global standards in protecting victims and holding businesses accountable, other nations will have a higher bar to follow — resulting in better protections for victims and survivors both regionally and all over the world.
URGENT ACTION CASES
Urgent Action Victory! Palestinian NGO Worker Released
On 30 September, Salah Hammouri, French-Palestinian lawyer and NGO worker, was released from Ketziot prison in southern Israel. He had spent one year in administrative detention without charge or trial.
On 30 September, a French-Palestinian NGO worker and lawyer Salah Hammouri was released from Ketziot prison in southern Israel, after spending 378 days in administrative detention without charge or trial. Salah Hammouri works as a field researcher in Jerusalem for Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, a Palestinian human rights organization based in Ramallah, in the occupied West Bank. According to Addameer, Salah Hammouri’s release came after an Israeli judge ruled to not renew his administrative detention again. He has now returned to his home in the neighbourhood of Kafr Aqab, in occupied East Jerusalem.
On 17 August 2017, Israel’s Minister of Defence Avigdor Lieberman issued a six-month administrative detention order against Salah Hammouri. Consequently, he was arrested during an overnight raid on 23 August 2017, at his home in occupied East Jerusalem. On 5 September, the day of the hearing to confirm the six-month administrative detention order, an Israeli district court in Jerusalem decided instead to reinstate a three-month sentence, the remainder of a previous prison sentence Salah Hammouri had served following a conviction in 2005. However, on 13 September, Israel’s High Court ruled in favour of the prosecution’s appeal against reinstating the sentence and approved placing him under administrative detention for six months. And on 17 September, the Israeli District Court confirmed the initial six-month administrative detention order, which was renewed twice by the same court on 5 March and 27 June, each time for a further four months.
In February 2016, the Israeli authorities deported and banned Salah Hammouri’s wife Elsa Lefort, also a French national, from entering the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) and Israel, after detaining her for three days at a detention centre near Ben Gurion airport. She and their two-year-old child have not been able to see Salah Hammouri since his arrest.
Salah Hammouri spoke to Amnesty International after his release and delivered the following message of thanks to all those who took action on his behalf: “Despite my deprivation of liberty, I had no doubt that the mobilization would grow in support of my case. I had no doubt that supporters from all over the world would stand again to denounce the injustice and arbitrary detention and to demand my release.’’
He added: ‘’This was a real hope for me, for my family, for my wife and son that I have not seen in over a year. I thank you all sincerely. I want to tell you that I will be worthy of the support you are giving me and keep fighting the injustice that strikes us. Our freedom is not for sale, even if we sometimes pay a very high price. The Palestinian people, like all others, should live freely. The fact that you do not intend to give up, gives me and others so much strength to continue our struggle against the occupation. The support and mobilization should continue until the release of all Palestinian political prisoners and detainees, including my colleagues from Addameer Ayman Nasser and Khalida Jarrar, which are cases that Amnesty International continues to campaign on.’’
Thank you to all those who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.
Urgent Action: Human Rights Defender Brutally Attacked
Alfredo Okenve, an Equatorial Guinea human rights defender was brutally attacked on 27 October by unknown armed men. He was later abandoned in a lonely area outside the city of Bata, Equatorial Guinea’s capital.
End Shackling in Indonesia
In 2016, Human Rights Watch exposed the shackling of 18,000 people with psychosocial disabilities in Indonesia. Since then the government took promising steps to rescue people from chains while raising awareness and providing services. However, today, more than 12,800 people are still shackled—to beds, cement blocks, or in animal pens. Help end shackling once and for all by calling on the Indonesian government to monitor and end the practice of shackling inside institutions.
Urgent action update: Two Missing Prisoners Found; Torture Fears Remain
After weeks of uncertainty about the fate and whereabouts of IT specialist Victor Filinkov and civil society activist Yuliy Boyarshinov, on 31 October the two men were confirmed to being held at pre-trial detention centers in St. Petersburg, Russia. The authorities failed to disclose the fate or whereabouts of the two men, despite them being in their custody, which amounts to an enforced disappearance. Their allegations of torture and ill-treatment remain un-investigated and there are serious concerns for Victor Filinkov’s health.
Urgent Action: Activist Charged for Peaceful Anti-Military Protest
Activist Tin Maung Kyi has been detained for staging a peaceful solo protest calling on the international community to arrest senior Myanmar generals. He has been charged under laws often used to silence peaceful activists and faces up to two years and one month in prison if found guilty. He must be immediately and unconditionally released.
Turkey, the most notorious country in the world in terms of jailing journalists, with 237 currently behind bars, has also come after foreign reporters in an ever-escalating crackdown on freedom of the press and freedom of expression.
Dozens of foreign reporters have faced administrative and legal action including false imprisonment by the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, which is bent on silencing all critical voices in Turkey including local, regional, national and even foreign ones.
A new report by the Stockholm Center for Freedom titled “The Clampdown on Foreign Journalists in Turkey” explains in detail how reporters from other countries face serious obstacles in Turkey that at times suggest a deliberate, systematic and calibrated policy by the government is in fact being implemented.