Category Archives: Arkeeblog

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update February 28-March 4

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012) a great friend and human rights defender

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

220px-holbein-erasmus1
Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.
bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

CHARITY CORNER

This week we call your attention to Doctors without Borders who stand ready to supply support wherever needed against the coronavirus. In countries with weak health services, they are available to strengthen the struggle against the virus. We call for donations to them to get them moving as they did against SARS in 2003 which was caused by a similar coronavirus.

WINGS FOR SPECIAL KIDS.

We are adding a call to support Krembo Wings, an Israeli non-profit organization which brings children with and without disabilities together for weekly social activities in its branches across Israel. Krembo Wings serves children and youth of all backgrounds and reflects the diverse make-up of Israeli society. Krembo Wings motto is Together Creating a Meaningful Place for Everyone. The society provides a warm and friendly environment for children and adults who have special needs. This call will be a permanent feature of this blog. Please donate to this worthy cause,

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

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.

A major calamity for indigenous people is forced contact with outsiders. Please raise your voice for them and their right to live as they choose.

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.

tackling-modern-slavery-preview
You can download this book

Look for these logos:

Look for these logos:

logo_rfa
utz_certified

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 raise your voice against child marriage

URGENT ACTION CASES

CHINA

Coronavirus: Stop censorship in China

Censorship, harassment and punishment for speaking out are hindering the fight against the coronavirus outbreak. Take action now to demand an end to censorship in China.

EGYPT

Speak out for women’s rights defender Azza Soliman

Every day, Azza Soliman risks her own safety and freedom to defend survivors of abuse in Egypt.

Azza Soliman founded the Centre for Egyptian Women’s Legal Assistance. Photograph: Twitter

EQUATORIAL GUINEA

Urgent Action Victory! Human Rights Defender Released

On 14 February 2020, Joaquín Elo Ayeto was released from Black Beach Prison in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, where he had been imprisoned for almost a year following his arbitrary arrest on 25 February 2019. He was released without any explanation or any papers confirming his situation.

NO FURTHER ACTION IS REQUESTED. MANY THANKS TO ALL WHO SENT APPEALS.

On 14 February 2020 Joaquín Elo Ayeto, was released from Black Beach Prison in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, where he had been imprisoned for almost a year. Without any explanation or information, Joaquín was taken out of the prison and left on the street without a phone or any money.

The release took place following a meeting on the same day of the Secretary General of the Convergence for Social Democracy Party, and other members of the opposition party of which Joaquín is a member, with Teodoro Obiang, President of Equatorial Guinea. In that meeting the President gave the order to release Joaquín.

Joaquín Elo Ayeto was arrested at his home on 25 February 2019, accused of having information on a plot to kill the president. Joaquín was tried for defamation and threats against the President on 21 November 2019. His sentence was never read.

Despite his imprisonment Joaquín Elo Ayeto is determined to carry on with his human right work: “Now that I am free I’m going to carry on doing the work that I used to do before. I can see that the country is in a much worst situation than a year ago when I was detained. The economic crisis is worst, the government continues without giving information to its citizens…”

Following his release, Joaquín Elo Ayeto shared the following message with Amnesty International: “I have been told of the work that you have done for me and I want to thank the titanic effort by Amnesty International that has resulted in my release. I want to thank all the work that has been done to achieve my release”. 2019. His daughter only learned about his conviction in recent months through word of mouth. Missing since May 2017, he has been sentenced to 15 years in prison. No evidence against him has been made public.

MALAYSIA

Urgent Action: Indigenous Land Rights at Risk

More than 930 hectares of ancestral land customarily claimed land by the largely Temuan Indigenous community in western Malaysia is at risk of having its status as a ‘forest reserve’ removed, resulting in some 1,000 Indigenous people being dispossessed of their land for development projects. The Selangor Forestry Department’s failure to consult the relevant Indigenous communities demonstrates a blatant disregard for the principle of free, prior and informed consent, as well as their willingness to put corporate development ahead of the welfare of citizens.

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MOROCCO

Urgent Action: Grocer Imprisoned for Speech

Omar Ben Boudouh, known as Moul El Hanout (the grocery store owner), has been hospitalized since 14 February 2020 after spending 45 days on hunger strike. On 5 December 2019, police arrested Ben Boudouh and accused him of “offending” public officials and institutions and “incitement to hatred”. Ben Boudouh had previously posted a live video on his Facebook page where he peacefully expresses critical opinions about the king of Morocco saying that he allowed for impunity to prevail. On 7 January 2020, a court sentenced Ben Boudouh to three years in prison and he subsequently began a hunger strike. His lawyers appealed the sentence on 12 February 2020 and are awaiting a final verdict to be pronounced on 26 February 2020.

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ECUADOR

Urgent Action: Ombudsman’s Life at Risk After Death Threats

The life and personal integrity of Ombudsman Freddy Carrión and his family are at risk. He recently received repeated death threats, including a bomb threat at his family’s home on 13 February. Even though he publicly denounced this situation, the Ecuadorian government has failed to protect him and his family. The Ombudsman stated that this is a retaliation for his human rights work during the crisis in October 2019. We call the Attorney General to grant immediate protection to him and his family and to investigate these threats in an immediate, impartial and independent manner.

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KAZAKHSTAN:

Trade unionist Erlan Baltabay imprisoned – again!

In July this year, Erlan Baltabay, a leader of the Independent Oil and Energy Workers’ Union in Kazakhstan, was sentenced to seven years in prison on politically motivated charges. A huge international union mobilization followed, including a LabourStart campaign signed by thousands calling for his release. He was released from prison in August after being pardoned by the President and was able to return home to his family.

He has now been imprisoned again. Please act on his behalf.

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update February 20-26

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012), a great friend and human rights defender.

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 220px-holbein-erasmus1.jpg

Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.

 

CHARITY CORNER

This week we call your attention to the Cambodian Children’s Fund that transforms the country’s most impoverished kids into tomorrow’s leaders, by delivering education, family support and community development programs into the heart of Cambodia’s most impoverished communities.

The heart of the Fund is its founder and president, Scott Neeson. His story of going from a senior position in the US film industry to founding a charity is worth reading. The charity has a very high rating with Charity Navigator.

Scott left his rich life style behind and moved to Cambodia in 2004–here he is 15 years on.

WINGS FOR SPECIAL KIDS.

We are adding a call to support Krembo Wings, an Israeli non-profit organization which brings children with and without disabilities together for weekly social activities in its branches across Israel. Krembo Wings serves children and youth of all backgrounds and reflects the diverse make-up of Israeli society. Krembo Wings motto is Together Creating a Meaningful Place for Everyone. The society provides a warm and friendly environment for children and adults who have special needs. This call will be a permanent feature of this blog. Please donate to this worthy cause,

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

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.

This week we call your attention to the Tiger Reserve people of India.

Listen to tribal conservationists
“How could we harm the forest? We’re the ones that save the forest. As long as we are here, the forest will be fine. We are the defenders of the forest. If we leave, who will protect the forest?”
Baiga, Achanakmar Tiger Reserve

The lives of hundreds of thousands of tribal people in Indian tiger reserves are being destroyed in the name of conservation. The Indian government is illegally evicting them from the land where they have always lived and that they have always protected. Take a stand for tribal people who are being driven from their land despite laws that are designed to protect them.

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.

Look for these logos:

logo_rfa
utz_certified

URGENT ACTION CASES

BANGLADESH

Urgent Action: Singer Arrested for “Hurting Religious Sentiment”

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Bangladeshi folk singer Shariat Boyati has been arrested under the draconian Digital Security Act for stating that music is not forbidden in the Qur’an. He faces up to five years’ imprisonment on vague charges of hurting religious sentiment. Arrested for solely exercising his right to freedom of expression, Shariat Boyati must be immediately and unconditionally released.

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RUSSIAN FEDERATION

Urgent Action: LGBTI and Women’s Rights Activist Under Arrest

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Russian activist and artist, Yulia Tsvetkova, is facing prosecution and harassment for defending women’s and LGBTI rights. She has been under house arrest since 22 November, under absurd charges of “production and dissemination of pornography” for her drawings of the female body. She is facing up to six years in prison if convicted. Yulia Tsvetkova is a prisoner of conscience and must be immediately and unconditionally released.

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TAJIKISTAN

Urgent Action: Journalist Jailed and at Risk of Torture

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Independent journalist, Daler Sharipov, was arrested on 28 January and is held in pre-trial detention in Tajikistan’s capital Dushanbe on trumped up charges of “inciting religious discord”. Daler Sharipov is being denied access to his lawyer and is at risk of torture. He is a prisoner of conscience, detained solely for exercising his right to freedom of expression, and must be released immediately and unconditionally.

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CHINA

Urgent Action: Uyghur Academic Jailed for “Inciting Extremism”

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Prominent Uyghur historian and publisher Iminjan Seydin was convicted of “inciting extremism” after a secret and grossly unfair trial in February 2019. His daughter only learned about his conviction in recent months through word of mouth. Missing since May 2017, he has been sentenced to 15 years in prison. No evidence against him has been made public.

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The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update January 9-15

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012) a great friend and human rights defender

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

220px-holbein-erasmus1
Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.
bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote



CHARITY CORNER

This week we call your attention to the Malala Fund. This is a an international, non-profit organization that fights for girls’ education. It was co-founded by Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest Nobel Prize laureate and her father, Ziauddin. Malala Fund breaks down the barriers preventing more than 130 million girls around the world from going to school. Malala nearly paid for her advocacy with her life and is the youngest Nobel Peace Prize laureate. This foundation is most worthy of your support.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is story_photos_nigeria.jpg
With help from Gulmakai Champion Rotimi Olawale, this 15-year-old mentors other girls and talks to their parents about why they should be in school.

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

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.

A major calamity for indigenous people is eviction from their lands in the name of conservation. We know that tribal people are the best conservators of their environment. Please raise your voice for them.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is dsc-8427-001_1170.jpg
Congolese officials hand the top official (and WWF employee) of Salonga National Park an assault rifle. Some of the park’s guards have been accused of gang rape, torture and murder.© Sinziana-Maria Demian / WWF

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.

You can download this book

Look for these logos

URGENT ACTION CASES

Urgent Action Update: Communities in Boyaja, Choco (western Colombia) Threatened by Armed Groups

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is palaciios-colombia.jpg

Human Rights Defender Leyner Palacios has been vocal about the presence of these illegal armed groups in the territories of the communities of Bojayá. On December 31, 2019, 300 members of the Autodefensas Gaitanistas de Colombia placed four communities of Bojayá under forced confinement. On January 3, 2020, the AGC threatened Leyner Palacios and gave him two hours to leave the territory of Bojayá or they would kill him. We urge the Colombian government to take immediate action to guarantee his protection.

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UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

Urgent Action Update: Verdict Date Set for Two Lebanese Men

The Federal Supreme Court has set 20 January 2020 to issue its verdict in the case of two Lebanese men, including Ahmed Nimr Sobeh, who are appealing their conviction and sentences. The Court is yet to set the date to hear the appeal of a third Lebanese man, Abdelrahman Talal Chouman. The three men had been sentenced by the Federal Appeal Court in a trial that did not meet international fair trial standards.
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INDONESIA

FreeRioWijaya: Indonesian trade unionist jailed for union safety activities

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On 20 August 2019, Rio Wijaya, a dedicated trade unionist from the Indonesian dockers’ union Serikat Pekerja Jakarta International Container Terminal (SP JICT), was brutally attacked by security guards at Hutchison Port’s terminal in Jakarta, and subsequently Rio was arrested and detained under false allegations of defaming and assaulting the security guards on 21 November 2019. Please join us in demanding that Hutchison Ports do everything within its powers to set the record straight and facilitate the immediate release of Brother Rio and that all charges leveled against him are dropped.

L

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update January 2-8

Our feature image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012) a great friend and human rights defender

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

220px-holbein-erasmus1
Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.
bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote



CHARITY CORNER

This week we again remind you of the Afya Foundation who arrange to transport medical supplies and equipment to needy countries in Africa. This charity is most worthy of your support.

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

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.

A major calamity for indigenous people is eviction from their lands because of economic desires of outsiders such as the threat of extinction of Kawahiva in the rainforests of Brazil.<div class=”clearer”> <h2>THE STRUGGLE AGAINST SLAVERY</h2> <p>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 <a href=”http://www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/newsroom/news/WCMS_246549/lang–en/index.htm”>ILO’s Protocol on Forced Labo</a>r which is all about modern slavery. We call your attention to the <a href=”http://www.antislavery.org/english/”>anti slavery campaign.</a> There you can sign up for action updates.The importance of checking your sellers’ supply chains cannot be overemphasized.</p> </div>

tackling-modern-slavery-preview


Look for these logos:<div class=”separator”><figure><a href=”https://arkee12.files.wordpress.com/2017/04/ac349-index.jpg”><img src=”https://arkee12.files.wordpress.com/2017/04/ac349-index.jpg?w=77&amp;h=92&#8243; width=”77″ height=”92″ border=”0″></a></figure></div><div><figure><img class=” size-full wp-image-1174 aligncenter” src=”https://arkee12.files.wordpress.com/2017/05/logo_rfa.jpg?w=300&#8243; alt=”logo_rfa” width=”150″ height=”150″></figure></div><div><figure><img class=” size-full wp-image-1180 alignright” src=”https://arkee12.files.wordpress.com/2017/05/utz_certified.png?w=280&#8243; alt=”utz_certified” width=”140″ height=”112″></figure></div><div></div>

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 raise your voice to call for the end of child marriage in the UK. It is a ghastly thought to consider the legality of child marriage in a progressive modern country.

URGENT ACTION CASES

SLOVAKIA

Urgent Action Victory! Bill Restricting Abortion Rights Rejected

The Slovak Parliament rejected a bill aimed at obstructing access to safe and legal abortion. If adopted, this bill would have undermined women’s privacy and autonomy and subjected them to harmful stigma, humiliation and degrading treatment.
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NO FURTHER ACTION IS REQUESTED. MANY THANKS TO ALL WHO SENT APPEALS.

On 5 December the Slovak Parliament (National Council) rejected a bill that required women seeking abortions to undergo a mandatory ultrasound scanning and to view and obtain an ultrasound image of the embryo or the foetus. The proposal was an alarming attempt to rollback reproductive rights in Slovakia.

Among the 150 MPs in the Slovak Parliament, only 59 voted in favor of the bill, meaning it did not meet the requirement for a simple majority of 76 votes. Twenty-four MPs voted against the bill and 40 abstained.

In a joint letter published on 18 November, more than 30 organisations -including Amnesty International – called on all Slovak MPs to reject the bill. Similarly, the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe called for the rejection of the legislative proposal and any other legislative proposals that could limit women’s access to their sexual and reproductive rights. The outcome of the voting is a huge victory for women and for all activists who spoke out and mobilized in Slovakia and internationally against this harmful bill.

The original bill was also prohibiting “advertising” on abortion and imposing a fine of up to 66,400 Euros on those who order or disseminate it. This prohibition risked a chilling effect on the provision of access to information on sexual and reproductive health, including safe and legal abortion, by medical providers.

MYANMAR

Urgent Action Update: New Convictions for “Peacock Generation” Members

Four members of the Peacock Generation, a satirical poetry troupe in Myanmar, have been given additional jail terms after being found guilty of “online defamation”. The four are among a group of seven Peacock Generation members charged under well-known repressive laws after they staged peaceful performances criticizing the military. Six are currently in prison, now serving sentences of between one and a half and two and a half years. They are prisoners of conscience who should be immediately and unconditionally released.

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RWANDA

Urgent Action: Pastor’s Daughter Arbitrarily Detained

Jackie Umuhoza, daughter of exiled pastor Deo Nyirigira, was arrested on the morning of 27 November 2019 in Kigali, Rwanda. On 28 November, after her family and friends raised the alarm on social media, the Rwanda Investigation Bureau confirmed on Twitter that Jackie Umuhoza had been arrested on 27 November on suspicion of treason and espionage. She remains in detention without having been brought before a judge.

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IRAN

Urgent Action: Kurdish Activist Needs Urgent Medical Care

Detained labor rights activist Bakhtiar Rahimi, from Iran’s Kurdish minority, was arrested on 27 November 2019 in Marivan, Kurdistan province. Bakhtiar Rahimi has serious heart and kidney conditions for which he needs daily medication. The Iranian authorities have denied him access to a lawyer and permitted him only one very brief phone call to his family since his arrest.

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The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update December 19-25

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012) a great friend and human rights defender. We wish a happy holiday to those who celebrate Hannuka, Christmas or Kwanza.

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

220px-holbein-erasmus1
Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.
bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote



CHARITY CORNER

This week we call your attention to Reporters without Borders aka Reporters Sans Frontières (RSF) This an international non-profit, non-governmental organization that promotes and defends freedom of information and freedom of the press. We invite you to see their press freedom rankings and to make a donation. You can also check out where your country ranks. We call for donations to RWB and suggest that you consider joining or supporting The Forum on Information and Democracy. An example of persecution of journalists, especially women working as reporters, will exemplify how severe the press freedom situation is.

Urooj Iqbal was gunned down on 24 November outside her home in Lahore, the capital of Punjab province (photo provided by the family – Image: DB / RSF

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

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.

A major calamity for indigenous people is forced contact. There are more than a hundred uncontacted tribes around the world. They are a vitally important part of humankind’s diversity, but they face catastrophe unless their land is protected. We’re doing everything we can to secure their land for them, and to let them live. But we depend on you!

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.
tackling-modern-slavery-preview
You can download this book

Look for these logos:

”logo_rfa”
”utz_certified”

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 raise your voice to call for states to endorse the UN Protocol against forced labor.

tackling-modern-slavery-preview
You can download this book.

URGENT ACTION CASES

EGYPT

https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwrite.amnestyusa.org%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2019%2F09%2FEGYPT-e1567791659389.jpg&f=1&nofb=1

Urgent Action Update: Housing Rights Researcher in Detention

On 26 November 2019, Ibrahim Ezz El-Din, a housing rights researcher with the Egyptian Commission for Rights and Freedoms (ECRF), appeared at the Supreme State Security Prosecution in Cairo after 167 days of enforced disappearance since his arrest at his home in Moqattam, Cairo, on 11 June 2019.

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UZBEKISTAN

Urgent Action Update: Defender Kept in Forced Psychiatric Detention

On 28 November a court decided to extend the detention of Uzbekistani blogger and human rights defender Nafosat Olloshkurova in a psychiatric hospital. Nafosat Olloshkurova was detained and beaten by police on 23 September while monitoring and reporting about a peaceful protest. She was placed in psychiatric detention on 26 September. There are serious concerns that she is being subjected to medical treatment without her consent and that her health has deteriorated while in detention. She must be immediately released.

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SENEGAL

Urgent Action: Nine Activists Jailed for Protesting

Nine activists: Guy Marius Sagna, Mamadou Diao Diallo, Malick Biaye, Pape Abdoulaye Touré, Babacar Diop, Souleymane Diockou, Ousmane Sarr, Souleymane Ndjim and Fallou Galass, were arrested on 29 November 2019 in Dakar, the capital of Senegal, and charged with “participation in an unauthorized gathering”. Eight of them have been held in detention since then and are on hunger strike. The health of two of the activists has deteriorated since.

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ALBANIA

Solidarity with the miners – end repression now!

The Trade Union of United Mineworkers of Bulqiza (Albania) announced its formation on 17 November 2019. Five days later, the chairman of the union was dismissed by AlbChrome, part of a very powerful corporation (Balfin) and the biggest mine company operating in the region. In response, the workers boycotted work demanding the reinstatement of their union leader and subsequently an end to worker repression, and higher wages. Please click and read on and add your voice to the protest.

Charity

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update December 12-18

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012) a great friend and human rights defender

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

220px-holbein-erasmus1
Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.
bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

CHARITY CORNER

This week we call your attention to Books for Africa,. It is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to collecting, sorting, shipping, and distributing books to children and adults in Africa. With headquarters in St. Paul, Minnesota, USA, and warehouses in St. Paul and Atlanta, Georgia, BFA’s mission is to end the book famine in Africa. Books For Africa is the largest shipper of donated text and library books to the African continent, shipping over 28 million books to 49 different countries since 1988. In 2012 BFA shipped 2.2 million books valued at $28.3 million to 22 African countries, with an additional 616 computers and 15 brand new law libraries.

Books For Africa has received the top rating of 4 stars from Charity Navigator.org and meets all standards set by the Charities Review Council.Please choose your donation aim at this site.

A book opens a world to a child

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

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.

A major calamity for indigenous people is eviction from their lands because conservation colonialism. Organizations such as WWF have committed crimes against people in Africa. It is well known that tribal people who have lived in the land for centuries are the most effective conservators. When local people are not allowed to hunt for food, but trophy hunters from abroad are welcomed and encouraged, it is obvious that something is basically wrong. Please stand up for the rights of tribal people.

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.

tackling-modern-slavery-preview
You can download this book

Look for these logos:

logo_rfa
utz_certified

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 raise your voice to call for an end to child marriages.

Hear from a victim.

URGENT ACTION CASES

GUINEA

Urgent Action: Five Activists in Detention

Alseny Farinta Camara

Five pro-democracy activists, Alseny Farinta Camara, Moussa Sanoh, Boubacar Diallo, Thierno Seydi Ly and Thierno Oumar Barry, were arrested on 14 November 2019 in Kindia, western Guinea, and charged with participation in an unauthorized gathering. They are all members of pro-democracy coalition National Front for the Defense of the Constitution (FNDC in French). Two of the activists require medical attention.

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COLOMBIA

Urgent Action: Thousands in Need of Urgent Protection

2,250 Persons from Indigenous and Afro-descendant communities in Bojayá, Chocó (western Colombia) are under siege by the guerrilla National Liberation Army (Ejército de Liberación Nacional, ELN) and the paramilitary Gaitanistas Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (Autodefensas Gaitanistas de Colombia) – groups that are denying them access to food and basic healthcare services. On 17 November, the Ombudsman’s office reported that the armed groups threatened social leaders opposing their presence in the zone and were putting landmines around the few areas with phone coverage. We urge Colombian authorities to deploy a comprehensive protection plan to protect Bojayá’s communities’ rights.

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RUSSIAN FEDERATION

Urgent Action Update: Rights Defender Facing Trumped-Up Charges

Server Mustafayev, a Crimean Tatar activist, asks to draw attention to the fact that “repression and persecution on the grounds of national belonging or religious belief are taking place in the internationally recognized “Ukrainian” Crimea”

The trial of Server Mustafayev has started following his transfer to a detention center in Rostov-on-Don, southwest Russia. Server Mustafayev is a human rights defender from Russian-occupied Crimea who has been in detention since May 2018, under false terrorism-related charges. He is a prisoner of conscience, targeted solely for his human rights activism, and must be released immediately and unconditionally.

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BELARUS

Urgent Action: Viktar Paulau at Risk of Imminent Execution

Viktar Paulau. Credit: Investigative Committee of Belarus
Viktar Paulau. Credit: Investigative Committee of Belarus

Viktar Paulau is at risk of imminent execution after the Supreme Court upheld his conviction and death sentence on 12 November. Amnesty International opposes the death penalty in all cases, without exception, as the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment.

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POLAND

Reinstate sacked union leaders at Castorama,

UNI Commerce calls upon trade unions and workers worldwide to urge Castorama to re-instate 10 trade union activists in Poland.
Castorama is a brand of Kingfisher PLC, a British multinational home improvement company which employs 12,000 workers in 80 stores in Poland. NSZZ Solidarnosc Commerce, an affiliate of UNI Commerce, launched an organizing campaign for Castorama workers.

Please join the protest.

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update December 5-11

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012), a great friend and human rights defender

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

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Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.
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CHARITY CORNER

This week we call your attention to Action Against Hunger.

Action Against Hunger is the world’s hunger specialist whose primary goal is to create a better way to deal with deadly hunger. For almost 40 years, this global humanitarian organization has been on the front lines treating and preventing hunger across nearly 50 countries; serving more than 20 million people in 2017 alone. Action Against Hunger is the leader in a global movement that aims to end life-threatening hunger for good within our lifetimes. The organization is committed to doubling the number of children who receive urgent hunger care, from three million to six million by 2020. Of every dollar donated, 93 cents go directly to saving lives today and preventing hunger tomorrow.

Please donate to this worthy cause. They are rated highly by Charity Navigator.

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

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.

A major calamity for indigenous people is eviction from their lands because of economic desires of outsiders .

The only international law that can secure tribal peoples’ land rights is the International Labour Organization Convention 169. ILO 169 recognizes and protects tribal peoples’ land ownership rights, and sets a series of minimum UN standards regarding consultation and consent.

ILO 169 has been around since 1989, but only twenty-two countries have ratified it so far. At this rate, it will be another 170 years before every country has ratified the Convention. Every country that does so, strengthens its force, and gives tribal peoples a greater chance to survive and thrive.

Please call upon your government to ratify ILO 169.

What does ILO 169 say?

It protects tribal peoples’ right to:

  • Own the land they live on and use
  • Make decisions about projects that affect them
  • Equality and freedom

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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You can download this book

Look for these logos:

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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 raise your voice to call for the end of slavery on tea plantations. Please link to the Slavery in Focus page of the Guardian and post it to your social media in the hope that it will go viral and shame some people and corporations.

Twinings has joined Yorkshire Tea and published a full list of their suppliers from Assam, just two months after Traidcraft Exchange launched their campaign. Together, Twinings and Yorkshire make up nearly one-third of the UK tea market so these are significant steps forward.

URGENT ACTION CASES

We call on all our readers to sign up for the Annual Write for Rights of Amnesty International..

SAUDI ARABIA

Urgent Action Victory! Disappeared Qatari Father and Son Released

On 1 November 2019, the Saudi authorities released two Qatari citizens, Ali Nasser Ali Jarallah (70) and his son Abdulhadi Ali Nasser Ali Jarallah (17), who then returned home to Doha. On 18 August 2019, their family lost all contact with them as they travelled through Saudi Arabia to visit relatives. Amnesty International was concerned that they may have been forcibly disappeared and urged King Salman to reveal the whereabouts of the father and his son and immediately release them unless they were promptly charged with a recognizable criminal offence.

NO FURTHER ACTION IS REQUESTED. MANY THANKS TO ALL WHO SENT APPEALS.

On 1 November 2019, the Saudi authorities released two Qatari citizens, Ali Nasser Ali Jarallah (70) and his son Abdulhadi Ali Nasser Ali Jarallah (17) after arbitrarily detaining them. They both returned safe and sound to their family house in Doha and are both in good health. A relative told Amnesty International that they had been “detained without charge, but due to public pressure, they were released.” Amnesty International had good reason to believe that the two Qatari citizens were detained by the Presidency of State Security.

Ali Jarallah and Abdulhadi Jarallah had disappeared for more than two months and were unable to contact their family. They entered Saudi Arabia on 15 August 2019, on valid family visas on their way to visit Ali Jarallah’s brother in Dammam, in the Eastern Province. They were in contact with their family in Qatar until 18 August, when they were nearing the city of al-Hofuf in the Eastern Province.

Ali Jarallah is diabetic and suffers from heart and kidney problems as well as high blood pressure. He is on regular medication and must attend his regular doctor’s appointments in Doha.

Amnesty International called on King Salman to immediately reveal the whereabouts of Ali Jarallah and his son Abdulhadi Jarallah; to disclose the reason for their detention and release them unless promptly charged with a recognizable criminal offence, in accordance with the principles of due process recognized by international law.

UKRAINE

Urgent Action Victory! Police Protect Transgender Rights March

On 23 November, adequate police protection enabled up to one hundred transgender rights activists in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, to hold the 2019 Trans March and mark Transgender Day of Remembrance. The police successfully prevented attempts by groups openly advocating hatred and discrimination to disrupt the event.

NO FURTHER ACTION IS REQUESTED. MANY THANKS TO ALL WHO SENT APPEALS.

Transgender rights activists were able to hold a march on 23 November in Ukraine’s capital Kyiv to mark Transgender Day of Remembrance. Police officers successfully protected the event, known as Trans March, allowing up to one hundred activists to peacefully exercise their rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.

The successful protection of the Trans March comes in striking contrast with the similar event in 2018, when police failed to protect participants, did not take action against members of violent groups who attacked the march, and instead forced transgender rights activists into a nearby metro station effectively terminating their peaceful assembly.

This year the Trans March began at Mykhailivska square in central Kyiv with a minute of silence and followed with speeches by transgender rights activists. The participants of the Trans March were protected by a police cordon from members of groups openly advocating hatred and discrimination, assembled nearby. The police successfully curbed at least one real attempt to breach the cordon.

Twenty minutes after the beginning of the gathering, transgender rights activists proceeded to march through the central streets of Kyiv. The marchers’ column was protected by dozens of police officers. There were also dozens of police officers patrolling nearby streets and areas from which the marchers could be potentially attacked, including on their way back from the event. The march ended at Poshtova square and all participants were able to safely leave the area using a nearby metro station.

Organizers of the Trans March have thanked everyone in Ukraine and internationally whose support has contributed to this positive outcome.

ETHIOPIA

Urgent Action Victory! University Lecturer Released

University lecturer Firew Bekele was released on 19 November, after spending three months in detention for his alleged role in writing and publishing a book “the Hijacked Revolution”. He was a prisoner of conscience and should have never been persecuted.

NO FURTHER ACTION IS REQUESTED. MANY THANKS TO ALL WHO SENT APPEALS.

Firew Bekele, a marketing lecturer at Rift Valley University, was released on 19 November. He was arrested on 17 August and charged under Ethiopia’s draconian Anti-Terrorism Proclamation (ATP).

For the last decade, the ATP has been constantly used to suppress any form of dissent. Firew Bekele was accused of writing a book that criticizes Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. Firew Bekele denied having written the book. The head of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission, visited Firew Bekele in prison and called for his immediate release following the publication of Amnesty International’s Urgent Action on 20 September.

SLOVAKIA

Urgent Action: Abortion Rights at Risk in Slovakia

Slovak MPs are debating a bill that aims to further restrict access to abortion. If passed, it would require women seeking abortion care to fulfil a number of mandatory requirements that are not justified by medical reasons and would undermine women’s privacy, personal integrity, autonomy in decision-making about health care and will subject them to harmful stigma, humiliation and degrading treatment. The Slovak Parliament must urgently reject this bill.

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TURKEY

Urgent Action: Free Author Ahmet Altan

On 12 November, renowned Turkish author and former newspaper editor Ahmet Altan was detained after a court overturned the decision taken on 4 November to release him from over three years in detention. Ahmet Altan is a prisoner of conscience and must be immediately and unconditionally released.

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NIGERIA

Omoyele Sowore

Urgent Action: Human Rights Defenders Must Be Released

Nigerian authorities have continued to detain human rights defenders Omoyele Sowore and Olawale Bakare at the Department of State Services in Abuja, and Agba Jalingo in Calabar prison, southern Nigeria, since their arrests in August. They are facing trumped-up charges of treason because they demanded government accountability. The maximum penalty for the offense of treason is the death penalty. They must be released immediately and unconditionally.

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SOUTH KOREA

Protecting safe rates for truck drivers
In partnership with the International Transport Workers Federation and the Korean Public Service and Transport Workers’ Union (KPTU).

In South Korea, 1,000 people die annually due to truck crashes because big corporations like Samsung and Hyundai force low rates onto truck drivers forcing them to work long hours, overload their vehicles and speed, putting all road users at risk. Korean truck drivers work over twice the annual average for OECD countries, but as ‘owner drivers’ they are entirely unprotected by labour law. Please join the protest.