Category Archives: Human Rights

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update Blog July 19-25

Our featured image above shows our beloved Miriam, a great human rights defender.

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

220px-holbein-erasmus1

bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

CHARITY CORNER

This week we turn our attention to the Rainforest Alliance. Their mission: From fighting deforestation and climate change to building economic opportunities and better working conditions for rural people, the Rainforest Alliance is working to solve urgent environmental and social challenges.

The loss of a single species can have profound effects on other species, including humans. Case in point: bees, the sole pollinator for a wide variety of plants and a critical catalyst in global food production. Bees are suffering massive population losses due to the use of deadly pesticides. If bees were to become extinct, many popular foods would also disappear—among them apples, tomatoes, and almonds.

honeybee-flower

Honey bee on a flower

This charity is highly rated by Charity Watch.

 

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. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

This week we focus on the Yanomami tribe of Brazil.

Mining, ranching, and health care chaos threaten Yanomami

For thousands of years, the Yanomami have thrived in the rainforests of South America.

Now, they are struggling as the government fails to protect them from criminal invasions, attacks and disease.

Davi Kopenawa, Yanomami leader and shaman surrounded by children, Demini, Brazil.

Davi Kopenawa, Yanomami leader and shaman surrounded by children, Demini, Brazil.
© Fiona Watson/Survival

Please act for 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.

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 lend your voice to the call to outlaw child marriage in Niger.

Three-quarters of girls in Niger are married before they are adults. Child marriage often amounts to slavery, for example, when girls have not given their free and full consent, are subjected to control, exploited and unable to leave, so outlawing it is an important step towards protecting Niger children.

URGENT ACTION CASES

CUBA

Urgent Action Victory! – Environmentalist Conditionally Released

BRAVE_Cuba_ENG_3_F_2.001

 

Prisoner of conscience and environmental activist, Dr. Ariel Ruiz Urquiola, was sentenced in Cuba to one-year imprisonment for contempt. On 3 July he was released with conditions.

Authorities released prisoner of conscience, Ariel Ruiz Urquiola, a doctor in biological sciences who previously worked as a researcher at the University of Havana, on 3 July 2018. According to documents Amnesty International was able to review, prison authorities granted Ariel a conditional release (“licencia extrapenal”) following a prolonged hunger strike.

In Cuba, people imprisoned for solely expressing their beliefs are frequently set free under “licencia extrapenal”. This form of conditional release means that those convicted are allowed to spend the remainder of their sentences outside prison. Under this condition, the authorities could arrest Ariel at any time and return him to prison to complete his sentence.

Ariel Ruiz Urquiola was sentenced to one year of imprisonment for contempt (“desacato”) for allegedly disrespecting two forest rangers. The “desacato” (article 144.1 of Cuba’s Criminal Code) provision in Cuban criminal law is inconsistent with international law. It is an undue restriction on the right to freedom of expression, as public officials should tolerate more criticism than private individuals. The use of defamation laws with the purpose or effect of inhibiting legitimate criticism of government or public officials violates the right to freedom of expression.

Amnesty International will monitor Dr. Ariel Urquiola’s situation.

Many thanks to all who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.

MYANMAR

Urgent Action Update: TWO JOURNALISTS CHARGED IN MYANMAR

TOPSHOT-MYANMAR-MEDIA-RIGHTS-JUSTICE

Wa-Lone

Two journalists who have been detained for more than seven months in Myanmar have been formally charged in connection with their peaceful journalistic activities. They each face up to 14 years in prison. They must be immediately and unconditionally released.

TAKE ACTION

BURUNDI

Urgent Action Update: HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDER MARKS ONE YEAR IN PRISON

germain_rukuki.jpeg

Human rights defender and prisoner of conscience Germain Rukuki was arrested one year ago on 13 July 2017. He was sentenced to 32 years in prison on 26 April 2018. In June, he was hospitalized and underwent surgery for injuries sustained in prison. He has since been returned to prison although he requires continued treatment.

TAKE ACTION

BELARUS

Urgent Action: FATE AND WHEREABOUTS OF POLICEMAN UNKNOWN

Former Chechen policeman Artur Aydamirov, 34, disappeared on 8 June in Brest, Belarus, after learning in early 2018 that he is required to perform military service in Syria. He decided to flee Chechnya with his family. Witnesses saw unidentified men in uniform force Artur Aydamirov into a van and drive away. He has not been seen since and there are grave concerns about his fate.

TAKE ACTION

RUSSIA:

Union-busting at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology

In partnership with UNISOL and the Confederation of Labour of Russia – KTR.

The Union of the Higher Education Teaching Personnel/University Solidarity (UNISOL) has been fighting for the rights of teachers at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT) for several years. Under the union’s pressure, salaries have risen significantly from their former miserable level. The union blocked inordinate increases of professors’ teaching loads and has also fought the rector’s initiative to end the elections of department and faculty heads, a right provided by the Labour Code of Russia. The union needs help in its struggle to maintain democracy. Please click and help.

Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update June 21-27

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam, 1947-2012, a great 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 turn our attention to the the ongoing world wide struggle to defend freedom of the press and access to information. We refer you to Reporters without Borders who carry on this most important effort. Their barometer of press freedom violations tells a frightening story. We should all support them for they are fighting for us. When the information channels are closed, it will be too late.

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. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

This week we call your attention to the plight of the Bushmen people.

Bushman woman Xoroxloo Duxee from the Metsiamenong community, died of dehydration and starvation in 2005 after the government blockaded the reserve and armed guards prevented her people from hunting, gathering or obtaining water, Botswana.

Bushman woman Xoroxloo Duxee from the Metsiamenong community, died of dehydration and starvation in 2005 after the government blockaded the reserve and armed guards prevented her people from hunting, gathering or obtaining water, Botswana.
© Survival International

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 justice for the antislavery activists in Mauritania.

Justice for Abdellahi and Moussa

URGENT ACTION CASES

TURKEY

Urgent Action Victory! – Turkish Court Acquits Rapper

Image result for Ezhel

On 19 June, an Istanbul court ordered the immediate release of rapper, Ezhel, after acquitting him of ‘publicly promoting the use of drugs’ on the basis of insufficient evidence of intent to engage in any unlawful behaviour.

Sercan İpekcioğlu, better known by his stage name Ezhel, was detained by police on 23 May after a second round of questioning over drug promotion allegations. Ezhel was remanded in prison on the same day and was being held in Maltepe Prison, in Istanbul. The court decision to remand Ezhel in prison contained no material evidence that he had actively promoted the use of drugs. On 19 June, an Istanbul court acquitted Ezhel of ‘promoting drugs’ and ordered his immediate release. The rapper was acquitted with the judge ruling that there was insufficient evidence that Ezhel had intentionally engaged in any unlawful activity.

Ezhel’s arrest and detention prompted supporters to launch a viral social media campaign, with thousands of users calling for his release using the hashtag #FreeEzhel, making this one of the top trending hashtags on Twitter in Turkey. The rapper’s acquittal represents a significantly positive development in a country where freedom of expression has been under increasing attack since the ongoing state of emergency, in place since July 2016.

Ezhel is a prominent figure on the Turkish rap scene and is known for his dark depictions of street life in urban Turkey. He was questioned over two songs which refer to the use of cannabis and a now deleted social media post displaying a photograph of the rapper holding a cannabis leaf.

Following the trial, Ezhel thanked Amnesty International and its supporters for playing a leading role in the campaign for his acquittal: “Together we stand. Thank you for your solidarity and efforts.”

Thank you to all those who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.

MALDIVES

Urgent Action: HEALTH FEARS FOR DETAINEE WITHOUT ACCESS TO LAWYER

Image result for Lahiru Manikkuadura
Lahiru Manikkuadura, a Sri Lankan citizen, has been detained in the Maldives without a trial date since September 2016 and, following recent and restrictive changes in legal procedures, is being denied any access to his lawyer. Deplorable prison conditions have further raised serious concerns for his health and well-being.

TAKE ACTION

CHINA

Urgent Action: GRAVE FEARS FOR MISSING UIGHUR PHD STUDENT

Guligeina-Tashimaimaiti-1

Guligeina Tashimaimaiti has not been heard from since 26 December 2017, when she returned from Malaysia to her hometown in Yili, Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region. Her family fear that she has been detained at a re-education camp and is at risk of torture and other ill-treatment.

TAKE ACTION

MEXICO

Urgent Action: Disappearances Insufficiently Investigated

Image result for disappearance nuevo laredo

From February to May 2018 at least 33 people were reported disappeared in Nuevo Laredo, northern Mexico. Authorities have been losing crucial time to investigate and family members are being left without adequate protection.

TAKE ACTION

ALGERIA

alde10

Urgent Action: Blogger Convicted with 10 Year Prison Sentence

Following more than 16 months in pre-trial detention, Algerian blogger Merzoug Touati was convicted to 10 years prison terms for some peaceful online posts including an interview with an Israeli official.. The Court of Appeal in Bejaya will review its conviction on 21 June. He is a prisoner of conscience.

TAKE ACTION

AUSTRALIA

Exxon Mobil – time for a fair deal for your workers

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last year maintenance workers at Exxon Mobil’s onshore and offshore facilities received a shock when they heard that their employer, maintenance contractor UGL, was firing the whole workforce. Please join the protest

MANY COUNTRIES

Coca-Cola is becoming a serial human rights offender – in Haiti, Indonesia, Ireland, the Philippines and the United States. Please click to support these workers.

 

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update June 14-20

Our featured image shows Miriam, our beloved 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 turn our attention to the Books for Africa charity. Their mission:

A simple name for an organization with a simple mission. We collect, sort, ship, and distribute books to students of all ages in Africa.

Our goal: to end the book famine in Africa.

Books For Africa remains the largest shipper of donated text and library books to the African continent, shipping over 41 million books to 53 different countries since 1988.  Over the past 12 months we have shipped three million books, 93 computers and e-readers containing 223,000 digital books, as well as 10 new law and human rights libraries to 18 African countries. More than $2.5 million was raised last year to ship the books to the students of Africa.

This charity is highly rated 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. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

This week we ask for your help in maintaining the role of tribal people in conservation.

https://s3.amazonaws.com/assets-production.survivalinternational.org/pictures/10654/tribal-conservationists-banner_original.jpg

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 lend your voice to the call to close the Libyan slave markets.

 

URGENT ACTION CASES

USA

Urgent Action: CALL ON OHIO GOVERNOR TO STOP EXECUTION

Robert Van Hook is due to be executed in Ohio on 18 July. He has been on death row for 33 years for a murder committed in 1985. The parole board has voted against clemency. The governor is not bound by their recommendation and can stop this execution.

TAKE ACTION

MOLDOVA

Urgent Action: GRAVE HEALTH CONCERNS FOR DETAINEE WITH CIRRHOSIS

 

Moldovan businessman Serghei Cosovan is unable to access essential health care in pre-trial detention for his acute cirrhosis. The authorities are ignoring medical grounds to support treatment in an external specialised hospital and have recently remanded him to 30 more days in pre-trial detention. Serghei Cosovan’s health is rapidly deteriorating and there are serious risks to his life.

TAKE ACTION

CUBA

Urgent Action: ENVIRONMENTAL ACTIVIST IMPRISONED

Dr. Ariel Ruiz Urquiola, an environmental activist, was sentenced in Cuba to one-year imprisonment for contempt. He is a prisoner of conscience and must be released unconditionally and immediately.

TAKE ACTION

COLOMBIA

Image result for Nasa Embera Chamí

Urgent Action: Indigenous People Threatened And Displaced

More than 200 indigenous Nasa Embera Chamí from La Delfina reservation in Buenaventura (West), Colombia, are currently displaced following an armed attack to a member of their community on 8 June. They are in need of decisive security measures to protect them and access to humanitarian aid such as food, health services and shelter.

TAKE ACTION

USA/EUROPE

XPO: Time to talk about your behavior

XPO Logistics, one of the largest global logistics companies, is under increased scrutiny for its anti-worker, anti-union behaviour in Europe and the United States. XPO Logistics and XPO Europe’s toxic corporate culture are pervasive. Please join the protest.

KOREA

Oracle workers on strike

Workers at IT software giant Oracle have been on strike since May 16 after negotiations for a first collective bargaining agreement with the company broke down. Call on Oracle Korea management to immediately engage in good faith negotiations with the Oracle Korea Workers Union and to end the exploitation of the workers who make the company so successful. Please join the call.

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update May 24-30

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012) a dear friend and a great 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 turn our attention to the Fistula Foundation. Fistula is a childbirth injury largely eradicated in the developed world, but still devastating women in the poorest countries. It leaves the woman incontinent with catastrophic results for her family and social life.
It’s treatable with life-transforming surgery.

This charity is highly rated by Charity Watch.

 

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. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

The Kawahiva

In the Brazilian Amazon, a tiny group of uncontacted Indians teeters on the brink of extinction. Survival’s global campaign is pushing Brazil’s government to protect their land – the only way they can survive. Please open the link to see the video about them.

The tribe is forced to live on the run, fleeing violence from outsiders. Attacks and disease have killed their relatives.

The loggers are getting closer.

These are the Last of the Kawahiva. And their genocide will be complete unless their land is protected.

You can help us secure it for them: Together, we can give the Kawahiva a future.

 

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 lend your voice to the call to ensure freedom and safety for girls.

Pledge to join the fight for Freedom For Girls

This is a video for girls day, which comes in October. Relevant every day.

 

 

URGENT ACTION CASES

COLOMBIA

Urgent Action Update: Attack Causes Forced Displacement

https://www.aljazeera.com/mritems/Images/2018/3/10/904e0efb64d64dbaa3639f35a2b8b137_18.jpg

An elder Yukpa woman is braiding a basket that are sold to help support the community [Bram Ebus/Al Jazeera]

The binational Indigenous Yukpa people living in Cúcuta, in the east of Colombia, suffered an armed attack on 17 May followed by their forced displacement.

TAKE ACTION

MEXICO

Urgent Action: Indigenous Defender Killed, Others at Risk

Manuel-Gaspar-puebla-activista1
Indigenous environmental rights defender Manuel Gaspar Rodríguez was found dead on 14 May in Cuetzalan, Puebla state. He was one of a number of defenders facing criminal investigation for their opposition to the construction of a high-voltage power line. These defenders are at grave risk and have recently been subject to attacks and intimidation.

TAKE ACTION

NIGERIA

Urgent Action: Displaced Women, Children Denied Right to Food

Displaced-North-east-Women-Protest

A group of approximately 230 internally displaced women (known as the Knifar movement) and their children risk starvation as authorities have stopped supplying food to the IDP camp they have been living in since 2017. Food was last delivered to the camp on 18 April and it did not even last one week. There has been no communication from camp authorities on why the supply stopped. Women and their children have been left with no alternative means of getting food.

TAKE ACTION

ECUADOR

Oil giant Chevron dumped billions of gallons of deadly chemicals in the Ecuadorian Amazon, leaving behind rivers full of toxic waste, decimating wildlife and spreading cancer and death in indigenous communities.

They’ve never cleaned it up! But Chevron’s impunity could finally end if we persuade just one man to do the right thing.

Chevron’s top stockholder is a US retirement fund whose chair has challenged corporate abuse before, and his customers are part of this community! If we flood him with support in the next 24 hours he could tip a historic vote — at Chevron’s shareholder meeting tomorrow. Add your name now!

RUSSIA/SYRIA

Sign the petition to all World Cup 2018 leaders and teams:

“As citizens from around the world, we urge you not to attend Russia’s World Cup unless it stops dropping bombs on children in Syria. No country, team or player should condone these crimes against humanity by lauding the Russian regime at the games. We call on you to make sure sport is used for peace, not to sponsor war.”

 

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update May 4-16

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

Holiday greetings and good wishes for

  • Shavuot Jews
  • Ramadan Muslims
  • Pentecost Christians
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”.

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

bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

 

CHARITY CORNER

This week we turn our attention to the work of the Mercy Corps who are active worldwide. We focus on their work in Venezuela which is rapidly becoming a failed state. The humanitarian crisis there is such that a newborn in Syria has a better chance of survival than a newborn in Venezuela. Please click and donate.

Once people had good jobs, now they struggle to survive from day to day

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. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

A major calamity for indigenous people is racism. This week we focus our attention on the so-called Pygmies of Central Africa and their abuse.

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 join over 2,000,000 people who’ve taken action to fight against modern slavery. You can make a difference under 30 seconds.

URGENT ACTION CASES

SOUTH KOREA

Urgent Action Victory! – Activist’s Not-Guilty Verdict Upheld on Appeal

Lee Jin-young, operator of the online library ‘Labour Books’, was found not guilty of charges under the National Security Law at the Seoul High Court on 11 April 2018. This verdict was made following an appeal by the prosecution to a ruling on 20 July 2017 which found Lee Jin-young not guilty.

Lee Jin-young, labour activist and owner of the online library ‘Labour Books’, was arrested and detained on 5 January 2017, and officially charged on 3 February, for violating Article 7 of the National Security Law (NSL) after distributing materials that allegedly benefit “anti-government organizations”. Held in detention since his arrest, including periods of solitary confinement, he was finally released on 20 July 2017 after the Seoul Southern District Court ruled that he was not guilty.

Following an appeal to the verdict by the prosecution, a second trial was held at the Seoul High Court and the ruling of not-guilty was upheld on 11 April 2018. While the prosecution can appeal one more time, the risk of the ruling being overturned is considered to be small, and the likelihood that Lee Jin-young may again be detained for exercising his right to freedom of expression is rather low.

Thank you to all those who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.

Israel/OPT

Urgent Action Victory! – Israeli Government Stops Forced Deportations

The Israeli government has declared that it will not pursue forcible deportations of Eritrean and Sudanese asylum-seekers to third countries under the Israeli ‘Procedure for Deportation to Third Countries’. This follows the release of 280 asylum-seekers who had been detained as a result of the policy, after an order by the High Court of Justice.

Israeli authorities have now declared that they will not forcibly deport Eritrean and Sudanese asylum-seekers from Israel to an African “third country”. They will no longer be issuing deportation notices and conducting deportation hearings. However, the government has declared that Eritrean and Sudanese asylum-seekers, considered by Israel to be “infiltrators”, will still be encouraged to “voluntarily” leave Israel.

The Israeli authorities should ensure that Eritrean and Sudanese asylum-seekers are provided with documentation allowing them to live and work regularly in Israel and protecting them from unlawful detention and deportation. The authorities should under no circumstance pressure African asylum-seekers to “voluntarily” leave Israel when the time comes to renew their visas, in accordance with their international obligations not to transfer anyone to a country where they would be at risk of serious human rights violations, or where they would not be protected against such transfer.

From 4 February 2018, 280 Eritrean and Sudanese asylum-seekers who were already held in Holot detention centre, located in the Negev/Naqab desert, were issued deportation notices under Israel’s new ‘Procedure for Deportation to Third Countries’. Having refused to leave Israel, they were then detained in the Saharonim prison while awaiting deportation. All the 280 asylum-seekers were released between 2 and 15 April 2018, as ordered by the High Court of Justice, in the context of a case on the legality of Israel’s deportations to unspecified “third countries” in Africa, widely believed to be Uganda and Rwanda. The High Court ordered the government to stop the deportations after it failed to provide additional information on the deportation agreements. However, the 280 asylum-seekers were only granted one-month visas, which forbid them from working and living in the seven largest cities in Israel.

Those released included “Tesfai” (not his real name), a 29-year-old Eritrean asylum-seeker who had his asylum claim rejected without explanation. He was arrested in November 2017 for not having a valid visa. After 100 days in detention, he was told to leave Israel to go to Rwanda. When he refused, he was detained under the new policy introduced by the Israeli Population, Immigration and Border Authority (PIBA) for not cooperating with his removal.

Thank you to all those who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.

CHINA

Urgent Action Update: Poet Under Illegal House Arrest ‘Prepared to Die’

Liu Xia, widow of late Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo, kept crying during a recent recorded telephone conversation and said that she is prepared to die. Diagnosed as clinically depressed, Liu Xia’s well-being is the subject of serious concern after repeated empty promises by the Chinese authorities to allow her to leave China.

TAKE ACTION

RUSSIAN FEDERATION

Urgent Action: Peaceful Protester in Pre-Trial Detention

Image result for Mikhail Tsakunov

On 7 May, Dzerzhinsky District Court in Saint-Petersburg, Russia, remanded Mikhail Tsakunov in pre-trial detention until 4 July for alleged use of violence against a police officer. If found guilty, Mikhail Tsakunov could face 10 years in prison. However, the charges against him contravene publicly available video footage.

TAKE ACTION

COLOMBIA

Urgent Action Update: Yet Another Environmental Defender Killed

Image result for Hugo Albeiro George Pérez and Luis Alberto Torres Montoya

In less than a week, two members of the Ríos Vivos (Living Rivers) Movement have been killed in Antioquia, Colombia. The lives of other Ríos Vivos members are at risk as they continue demonstrating against the Hidroituango hydroelectric project.

TAKE ACTION

SUDAN

Urgent Action 19-year-old Noura sentenced to death for killing her rapist.

Demand justice for Noura >

Noura Hussein had already endured rape by the man she was forced to marry. Her husband and rapist, Hammad, got his two brothers and a male cousin to pin her down while he did it. When he tried to rape her again, she used a kitchen knife to protect herself. In the ensuing struggle, Hammad sustained fatal knife wounds. Now, at just 19 years old, Noura has been charged with murder and sentenced to death. We can’t allow this injustice to happen – please help and send an urgent email now to try and get justice for Noura.

TAKE ACTION

EQUATORIAL GUINEA

Urgent Action: Human Rights Activist Unable to Leave Country

Ramón Esono Ebalé, a cartoonist and human rights activist who spent almost five months in prison after being falsely accused of counterfeiting money, remains unable to leave Equatorial Guinea due to authorities failing to provide him with a passport.

TAKE ACTION

Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update April 26-May 2

Our featured image shows Miriam, a human rights defender, 1947-2012

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”.

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

.

bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

 

CHARITY CORNER

This week we turn our attention to the issue of domestic violence in Israel. We call your attention to the charity No2Violence, founded in 1977 by Ruth Resnick.

“No2Violence” was established in 1977 in Herzliya, in order to save women and children suffering from domestic violence, enabling them to leave and start a new life by providing them with shelter, professional help, vocational training, legal aid and by raising awareness about domestic violence.

“No2Violence”‘s main activity is the management and operation of 3 shelters for abused women and their children.

broken-heart

A drawing  by a child in  a shelter–the words are “broken heart.”

 

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. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

A major calamity for indigenous people is forced “development”. Help stamp it out.

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 lend your voice to the call to stop forced labor in the cotton fields of Uzbekistan!

URGENT ACTION CASES

TURKEY

In Turkey today, it’s dangerous to speak your mind.

Since the July 2016 failed coup attempt, more than 100,000 people have faced criminal investigations and possible prosecution, and more than 50,000 people have been imprisoned pending trial. Turkey is also the biggest jailer of journalists, with more than 120 finding themselves behind bars, simply for doing their job.

Those who continue to speak out and stand up for human rights in Turkey are paying a heavy price.

Being exposed to smear campaigns on social media and in pro-government media is often just the beginning. At any moment they might be arrested and find themselves in prison for months on baseless charges. This climate of fear leads to self-censorship. Activists start hesitating to raise their voices, knowing they could be thrown in jail for what they say.

As human rights lawyer Eren Keskin told Amnesty: “I try to express my views freely but I am also acutely aware of thinking twice before speaking or writing.”

turkey.jp

Eren Keskin has been repeatedly prosecuted over several decades. ©Amnesty International

Please click and join the campaign.

IRAN

Urgent Action Update: Iranian Trade Unionist on Hunger Strike

Iranian trade unionist Esmail Abdi started a hunger strike on 24 April,
to protest against the treatment of teachers and workers in Iran, on the
one hand, and the denial of his requests for prison leave, on the other.
Esmail Abdi is a prisoner of conscience serving a six-year sentence in
Tehran’s Evin prison for his peaceful trade union activities.

TAKE ACTION

PAKISTAN

Urgent Action: Disappeared Human Rights Defender at Risk of Torture

Deedar Ali Shabrani, a journalist from Pakistan’s Sindh province, is believed to have been forcibly disappeared and may be at high risk of torture and death. No information about his whereabouts are known since he was taken from his home by armed men in the early hours of 16 December 2017.

TAKE ACTION

NICARAGUA

Urgent Action: State Repressing Demonstrators

nica

Nicaraguan authorities have responded violently to demonstrations taking place throughout the country by repressing protesters, and violating their rights to freedom of expression and assembly. At least 28 people have been killed in this context since 18 April, including students.

TAKE ACTION
CHINA

Urgent Action Update: Chinese Activist’s 8 Year Sentence Upheld

wu-gan-resized
Prominent Chinese activist Wu Gan (better known by his pen name Tufu, ‘The Butcher’) continues to face grave risks of torture and other ill-treatment after the Tianjin Municipal High People’s Court rejected his appeal and upheld his sentence of eight years’ imprisonment for subverting state power.

TAKE ACTION

 

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update April 19-25 2018

Our featured image above shows Miriam (1947-2012) a great 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 turn our attention to the Helen Keller International Foundation-mission statement:

“Our mission is to save and improve the sight and lives of the world’s vulnerable.”

This charity is highly rated by Charity Navigator and by GiveWell..

GirlTryingonFrames_0

Girl trying on frames

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. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

 

The photos reveal a thriving, healthy community with baskets full of manioc and papaya fresh from their gardens.

When left alone they thrive

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 watch some videos with the stories of victims and survivors. They will tell you what they want you to do.

URGENT ACTION CASES

ISRAEL/OPT

Urgent Action Victory! – Gazan’s Second Leg Saved From Being Amputated

darw5j4x4aawaws

On 16 April, the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that 20-year-old journalist Yousef al-Kronz, who was seriously wounded by Israeli forces on 30 March during Land Day protests in the Gaza Strip, must be permitted to leave Gaza for urgent medical care in Ramallah to save his remaining leg.

On 16 April, the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that 20-year-old journalist Yousef al-Kronz, who was seriously wounded by Israeli forces on 30 March during Land Day protests in the Gaza Strip and has already lost one leg to amputation, must be permitted to leave Gaza for urgent medical care in Ramallah in the occupied West Bank to save his remaining leg. Three Israeli judges ruled unanimously in his favor, accepting a petition filed by human rights groups Adalah and Al Mezan Center For Human Rights on 8 April 2018. Yousef al-Kronz was transferred to the Arab Istishari Hospital in Ramallah on 16 April and will undergo surgery on Sunday 22 April.

On 1 April, Adalah and Al Mezan had submitted a request to exit Gaza on behalf of Yousef al-Kronz to the Israeli military Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), a unit of the Israeli ministry of defence. After three days without response, the two human rights organizations sent a follow-up letter to COGAT on 4 April. COGAT responded on 5 April, with a rejection of the request, apparently because it believed that Yousef al-Kronz had participated in mass protests on 30 March. On 8 April, the two organizations filed a petition to the Israeli Supreme Court demanding that Israel allow Yousef al-Kronz to leave the Gaza Strip to travel to Ramallah, where his legs could possibly be saved. Despite the urgency of the request, the court decided not to hold an immediate session and gave the government three days to respond. Due to the delay, the condition of one of Yousef al-Kronz’s legs deteriorated to the extent that it had to be amputated at a hospital in Gaza, while his other leg has remained at risk of needing to be amputated without immediate medical treatment.

Yousef al-Kronz is a media and journalism student at al-Azhar University in Gaza City and works with the Palestinian Media Association. He told Amnesty International that he was covering the Land Day protests, east of al-Borej refugee camp, when he was shot in both his legs on 30 March near the Israel-Gaza fence.

Yousef al-Kronz spoke to Amnesty International on 17 April to thank all those who took action on his behalf: “I thank you all so much for your support that helped save my second leg from being amputated. I almost lost hope that I would be transferred to a hospital in Ramallah and my leg would be saved, but thank God there are people out there who care about me and did everything necessary to make sure that I received the adequate medical treatment outside of Gaza.”

He said, “I only represent one case of an injured person from Gaza. There are still many injured and sick people in Gaza who are in need of urgent medical care. I was lucky to leave, but others are still struggling to get to hospitals that would save their lives. I call on all people of conscience to not stay silent to what’s happening in Gaza.’’ He added, ‘’This is not my suffering, my suffering is the sufferance of all Gazans who lack basic human rights to live in dignity.’’

Thank you to all those who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.

MYANMAR

Urgent Action Victory! – Kachin Pastors Released in Prisoner Amnesty

Image result for Nawng Lat

Kachin pastors Dumdaw Nawng Lat and Langjaw Gam Seng have been released from prison following a Presidential amnesty on 17 April 2018. The two men had been detained since December 2016 in connection with their role organizing a visit by journalists to Monekoe town, northern Shan State, to show the destruction allegedly caused by Myanmar Army airstrikes.

Kachin pastors Dumdaw Nawng Lat and Langjaw Gam Seng were released from Lashio prison in Myanmar’s Shan State on 17 April 2018. They were unconditionally released as part of a Presidential amnesty of 8,490 prisoners, including prisoners of conscience and arbitrarily detained individuals.

The two men were detained in December 2016 and held for a month in military custody without any charge and no access to their lawyers and family. They were detained shortly after they helped organize a visit by journalists to the site of an alleged military airstrike in late November 2016. They were charged under Article 17(1) of Myanmar’s 1908 Unlawful Association Act and 2012 Import and Export Law. Amnesty International believes that these charges were politically motivated and linked to their role in reporting alleged human rights abuses by the Myanmar military.

On 27 October 2017, they were each found guilty and sentenced to two years and three months in prison. Dumdaw Nawng Lat was sentenced to an additional two years in prison for “defamation” under Section 500 of Myanmar’s Penal Code in connection with a newspaper interview where he discussed the alleged airstrikes.

While Amnesty International welcomes the release of Dundaw Nawng Lat and Langjaw Gam Seng, the fact remains that they should never have been arrested and imprisoned in the first place.

Thank you to all those who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.

MYANMAR

Urgent Action Victory! – Kachin Prisoner of Conscience Freed

Lahpai-Gam-Resized

Kachin prisoner of conscience Lahpai Gam has been released from prison following a Presidential amnesty on 17 April 2018. Detained since June 2012, he was tortured during interrogation and falsely accused of being a member of an “unlawful” association. Lahpai Gam suffers from ill-health, which further deteriorated while he was in detention.

Lahpai Gam was unconditionally released from Myitkyina prison in Myanmar’s Kachin State on 17 April 2018 as part of a Presidential amnesty which saw the release of 8,490 prisoners, including prisoners of conscience and arbitrarily detained individuals.

Lahpai Gam was arrested in June 2012 in Kachin State in northern Myanmar. He was held incommunicado for almost a month before being transferred to Myitkyina prison, and was tortured by the military during interrogation. Falsely accused of being a member of the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), an ethnic armed group in Myanmar, and of involvement in the bombing of a bridge in Kachin State, he was sentenced to a total of twenty years’ imprisonment. However, due to insufficient evidence, the Supreme Court overturned the convictions under the Unlawful Association Act and two of the four counts under the Explosive Substances Act. The two remaining charges were upheld based on a confession letter dated from the time he was tortured and held incommunicado.

Throughout his incarceration, Lahpai Gam maintained his innocence, and Amnesty International believes the case against him was politically motivated. In November 2013, the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) declared Lahpai Gam’s arrest and detention to be arbitrary on the grounds that it restricted his rights to freedom of movement and residence, to freedom of thought and conscience, to freedom of expression and opinion, and violated the principle of non-discrimination.

While Amnesty International welcomes the release of Lahpai Gam, the fact remains that he should never have been arrested and imprisoned in the first place.

Many thanks to all who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.

INDIA

Urgent Action: Human Rights Defender Threatened at Her Home

adivasi-india-banner-1600x867

Pavitri Manjhi has faced continued threats, harassment and intimidation in relation to her peaceful activism. Visited at her home by two men every evening from 3 to 5 April 2018, she has been told to withdraw all formal complaints filed by Adivasi villagers against two private companies who allegedly defrauded members of the community of their land.

TAKE ACTION

CHILE

Urgent Action: Indigenous Leader on Hunger Strike Hospitalized

CORDOVA

The health and life of Mapuche Indigenous spiritual leader Machi Celestino Córdova, imprisoned since 2014 in Temuco, central Chile, is at risk after having spent more than 90 days on hunger strike, which he started in protest after the authorities denied him access to his ceremonial altar or rewe.

TAKE ACTION

KAZAKHSTAN

Urgent Action Update: Prisoner of Conscience Released on Bail

akmaral

On 13 April, prisoner of conscience, Akmaral Tobylova was released on bail. She had been under house arrest since 13 March, and is charged with financing an extremist organization merely for browsing an opposition party website.

TAKE ACTION