Tuesday, December 31, 2019

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES: Verdict Date Set in Unfair Trial - URGENT ACTION

Amnesty International, USA, 12-30-2019.

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.

Sunday, December 22, 2019

IRAN: Labour Rights Activist Needs Medical Care - URGENT ACTION

Amnesty International, USA, Dec. 2019.

Detained labour 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.

Sunday, December 15, 2019


Amnesty International, December 13, 2019.

Ubai Aboudi, NGO worker and education activist, has been issued a four-month administrative detention order by the Israeli military commander of the West Bank. Ubai Aboudi has been detained since 13 November 2019, without charge or trial in Ofer prison, near the West Bank city of Ramallah.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

BAHRAIN: Ensure Fair Verdict in Death Penalty Case - URGENT ACTION

Amnesty International, USA, December 11, 2019.

The High Criminal Court of Appeal in Bahrain has set 25 December 2019 to issue its verdict in the cases of Mohamed Ramadhan Issa Ali Hussain and Hussain Ali Moosa Hussain Mohamed. 

On 22 October 2018, Bahrain’s Cassation Court overturned their death sentences which it had confirmed in 2015 and returned their cases to the Appeal Court for re-examination, based on new evidence.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

BELARUS: Execution Imminent - URGENT ACTION

Amnesty International, USA, Dec. 2, 2019.

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.

Despite continuing dialogue between the international community and the Belarusian authorities on the establishment of a moratorium on executions as a first step towards abolition, in 2019 Belarus has executed at least two men and sentenced three men to death.

Belarus remains the only country in the whole of Europe and the former Soviet Union which still implements death sentences.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

IRAN: Women's Rights Defender Gets 24 Years - URGENT ACTION

Amnesty International USA, November 19, 2019.

Iranian women’s rights defender Saba Kordafshari, 21, has been sentenced to 24 years in prison for her peaceful human rights work, including campaigning against Iran’s discriminatory forced veiling laws. 

If her verdict is upheld on appeal, she would be required to serve 15 years of her prison sentence. She is a prisoner of conscience who must be immediately and unconditionally released.

Friday, November 15, 2019

IRAQ: Abducted Medic Released - GOOD NEWS!

Amnesty International, USA, 11-15-2019.

On 13 November 2019, activist and medic Saba Mahdawi was released. Saba went missing after being abducted by an unknown group on 2 November 2019. Her family confirmed to Amnesty that Saba was in good health and had not been ill-treated.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

IRAQ: Medic Abducted - URGENT ACTION

Amnesty International, USA, November 13, 2019.

On 2 November 2019, Iraqi activist and medic Saba Mahdawi was abducted by armed and masked men at around 11:20 pm on her way home from Tahrir Square in Baghdad. Saba’s family has raised her case with the local authorities, but no progress has been made to date. The Iraqi police and other security personnel involved in the investigation confirmed to her family that her whereabouts remained unknown, with no additional information with regards to the perpetrators’ identities.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

ISRAEL & OPT: Updates and Press Releases

Amnesty International, USA, Nov 4, 2019.

A lot has been happening on-the-ground in Israel, the OPT/Palestine.  Below are the latest updates on actions and statements issued by Amnesty International.

ACTION:  Ayman Nasser:  On September 11, 2019, the Israeli Ofer Military Court in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) approved the renewal of Ayman Nasser’s administrative detention for a further four months.  See Amnesty’s Urgent Action here:  https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/mde15/1076/2019/en/.

Amnesty International’s staffer targeted for harassment:  Laith Abu Zeyad.  See the Amnesty International statement here:  https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2019/10/israel-opt-amnesty-staff-member-faces-punitive-travel-ban-for-human-rights-work/. 

See the Amnesty statement about the IDF raid on the Addameer (the Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association) offices here:  https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2019/09/israel-ramps-up-assault-on-civil-society-with-chilling-raid-on-palestinian-ngo-addameer/.

Whatsapp announced on October 20 that Israeli spyware manufacturer, NSO Group, has used a Whatsapp vulnerability to target approximately 1400 individuals from 20 countries around the world. Information has surfaced that around 100 of these targets are HRDs. Amnesty is supporting a legal case in Tel Aviv District Court.  See press release here:  https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2019/10/whatsapp-scores-of-activists-targeted-with-spyware/.

Amnesty issued a statement when armed Israeli guards shot dead a Palestinian woman after she allegedly pulled out a knife at the Qalandiya military checkpoint between Ramallah and East Jerusalem in September.  See Amnesty's statement here:  https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2019/09/israel-opt-israeli-forces-killing-of-palestinian-woman-at-checkpoint-underscores-need-for-international-justice/.

Amnesty issued press release condemning state-sanctioned torture - Samir Arbeed.  See the press release here:  https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2019/09/israel-opt-legally-sanctioned-torture-of-palestinian-detainee-left-him-in-critical-condition/.

Links may be pasted into search engine to bring you to the action/press release.

Saturday, November 2, 2019

USA: Stand with Human Rights Defenders' - ONLINE PLEDGE

Amnesty International, USA, November 1, 2019.

We live in polarizing times.  But human rights—and a belief in human dignity—should unify us.  Let’s show a groundswell of unified support from across the United States!

The U.S.’s human rights reputation is inseparable from the Trump administrations’s attacks on asylum-seekers at our southern border, embrace of dictators, and disregard for international law and institutions.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

MOROCCO: Detained Journalist in Critical Condition - URGENT ACTION

Amnesty International, USA, October 30, 2019.

Moroccan journalist Rabie Lablak has been on hunger strike for over 45 days in Tanger 2 prison where he was transferred in April 2019 after being detained in Casablanca prison in May 2017 for his involvement in the Hirak El-Rif protests. 

Lablak is protesting the alleged torture and ill-treatment he has suffered at the hands of Moroccan security officials. Lablak’s hunger strike has continued for more than 45 days while the prison administration denies knowledge of the strike and confirms that Rabie never informed the administration of his strike and that his activities prove he is in good health.

AUSTRALIA: Refugees Held for 7 Years - ONLINE ACTION

Amnesty International Autralia, October 29, 2019

I am writing to you from Port Moresby where we have spent the past few days meeting with many of the refugees and people seeking asylum sent here more than seven years ago by the Australian Government.

If all goes well, by the time you read this, we will be back in Australia, safe with our families and friends.

The men here have no such opportunity. It’s a human crisis that has shocked me to the core. Just a handful remain on Manus Island now, the rest scattered throughout Port Moresby, recognised as one of the most dangerous cities in the world.

I have met mostly young men in their late 20s or early 30s. Though they came here as teenagers, in the prime of their life, their youth has been stolen. Hopes of going to university, starting their careers, having a family... all lost to them. They are doctors, musicians, marketing executives, social workers and even athletes. 

...From Craig Foster, Amnesty International Australia

Saturday, October 26, 2019

INDIANAPOLIS: Archbishop Calls for Firing of LGBTQ Teachers - ONLINE PETITION

Faithful America, October 25, 2019.

The Archbishop of Indianapolis has spent the past year pressuring Catholic schools to fire LGBTQ teachers across the archdiocese. Leaders at a local Jesuit high school refused -- so he issued a decree cutting ties with the school. 

Under pressure from Archbishop Charles Thompson, Roncalli High School has already fired two LGBTQ guidance counselors, Shelly Fitzgerald and Lynn Starkey. Now a third school staff member, social worker Kelly Fisher, says she has been fired for standing by her LGBTQ former colleagues on Facebook.

Every human being was created in God's image. No one should ever lose their job as punishment for how they were born -- or for loving their LGBTQ neighbors. Let's show Archbishop Thompson that Catholics and other Christians across the country stand with Jesuit leaders and LGBTQ Catholics in opposing this cruel discrimination!

INDONESIA: Six Face Life Imprisonment - ONLINE ACTION

Amnesty International Australia, October 25, 2019.

Six in Jakarta are facing life imprisonment.

Dano (Anes) Tabuni, Charles Kosal, Ambrosius Mulait, Isay Wenda, Arina Lokbere, and Surya Anta Ginting are charged with ‘rebellion’ for peacefully expressing their support for West Papua’s right to self-determination.

IRAN: Freedom for Nasrin Demanded - NEWS

Amnesty International, USA, October 24, 2019.

You have played an important part in our ongoing efforts to win the release of human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh. Thank you.

UPDATE:   One million signtures demanding Nasrin’s immediate and unconditional release have been delivered to Iranian embassies.

Each signature represents someone like you — someone who is outraged by her cruel sentence and is willing to demand her freedom.

Monday, October 21, 2019

TUNISIA: Activist Acquitted - GOOD NEWS

Amnesty International, October 20, 2019.

On 19 September 2019, a court in Tunis acquitted 18-year-old activist Maissa al-Oueslati of all charges after facing trumped-up charges that could have resulted in her imprisonment for up to 4 years. On 4 September 2019, the police arbitrarily detained Maissa al-Oueslati and her 16-year-old brother, for filming a protester threatening to set himself on fire in front of a police station. They were interrogated without a lawyer, in a blatant violation of Tunisian law and international human rights law.

Thursday, October 17, 2019


Amnesty International, Australia, October 16, 2019.

I’m writing to you to ask you to help me reunite my family.

I haven’t seen my husband since 2017. 

I miss talking to him, I miss hearing his voice. I am scared I will forget what he sounds like.

I loved watching him play with our eldest, they were like best friends. He never had the chance to play with his youngest daughter, or just hold her hand in his, because she was born after he was cruelly taken from us. They have never even met. Giving birth to her without him by my side was heartbreaking.

I fear he has been detained in China but I have never been told where he is or even why he was detained; I have no information about him after all this time.

Where is he? I wonder about this every day. Is he safe? Is he being treated well? We miss him so much. I just want to know where he is, to speak to him again, to make sure he is safe and well.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

MADISON: Dreaming of Freedom - EVENT

Just World Educational.

Meet Yousef Aljamal, a young writer who grew up in a refugee camp in Gaza and lived through the three devastating Israeli military assaults between 2008 and 2014. He will share his experiences and insights about the lives of youth there and elsewhere in Palestine, including tens of thousands imprisoned by Israel's military regime in the West Bank since 1967.

A contributor to the anthology Gaza Writes Back: Short Stories from Young Writers in Gaza Palestine Aljamal has recently translated into English the book Dreaming of Freedom: Palestinian Child Prisoners Speak. 

Sunday, October 27, 2019
2-4 pm
Christ Presbyterian Church,
944 E Gorham St, Madison, WI 53703

Wednesday, October 9, 2019


Amnesty International, USA, October 9, 2019.

The new sentence of 33 years in prison brings Nasrin’s total sentence - after two grossly unfair trials - to 38 years in prison. Nasrin has dedicated her life to peaceful human rights work, including defending women who peacefully protest against Iran’s degrading forced hijab (veiling) laws.
Women and girls in Iran are not allowed to leave their homes unless they cover their hair with a headscarf and cover up their arms and legs with loose clothing. Nasrin wanted to change this and she was jailed for it.
This is the harshest sentence recorded against a human rights defender in Iran in recent years, suggesting that the authorities are stepping up their repression. These sentences keep Nasrin separated from her husband and two children and stop her from being able to carry out her important work as a human rights lawyer.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

2019 Write for Rights is Live!

Image result for write for rights amnesty usa
You care about making a human rights impact. 
And right now, we’re kicking off the world’s largest campaign on behalf of people who have been attacked, harassed and jailed, including for their human rights work. It’s called Write for Rights, and you can be a part of it.

This year’s campaign is unique because we’re focusing Amnesty’s efforts on young people who have been targeted — young people like 23-year-old Yasaman Aryani, in the photo above.

Her case is outrageously unjust. Just this year, Iranian authorities sentenced her to 16 years in prison for peacefully protesting Iran’s compulsory veil laws for women. We must free her!

As part of Write for Rights, we are mobilizing our global community to write letters on behalf of targeted young people — showing them our support.

This works.

Former human rights defenders tell us that Write for Rights letters gave them hope during their most dire moments. Further, in the last five years, Write for Rights has helped release 26 people who were unjustly imprisoned around the world.

Birtukan Mideksa, a former Write for Rights case and human rights activist from Ethiopia told our team, “I am proof that your letters have power. Your letters set me free.” How powerful!

Next year, Yasaman could be thanking you.

MYANMAR: Rohingya Women Victims of Sexual Violence - ONLINE ACTION

Amnesty International, Australia, October 2, 2019.

You glance back. You see black smoke and fire where your village once thrived. The soldiers are burning everything.

You scramble through the forest, mud pulling at your ankles and skirt. Your baby boy is cradled to your chest. He starts wailing.  You stumble. The soldiers are getting closer.
Thousands of Rohingya women fleeing persecution in Myanmar are survivors of sexual violence at the hands of soldiers.

Rohima*, pictured above, is one of them. “I couldn't escape by myself,” she says. “Approximately 5 or 6 of them [the military] came and raped me.”
Rohima and other Rohingya women deserve justice. 

Call on the Australian Government to hold Myanmar’s military to account for sexual violence and other crimes against humanity.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

SAUDI ARABIA: Report on Death Penalty - NEWS

Death Penalty Project, Sept 5, 2019.

At the time of writing the report, Baroness Kennedy states that Saudi Arabia was already known to have carried out at least 134 executions this year.

Her report, titled "A Perverse and Ominous Enterprise: The Death Penalty and Illegal Executions in Saudi Arabia" is a deeply troubling read.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

USA: 17 Prisoners Released - GOOD NEWS

Amnesty International, USA, September 24, 2019.

Because of you, 17 people are no longer living in harsh conditions behind bars—that’s simply amazing!  This includes:  Johan Teterissa from Indonesia, Shawkan an Egyptian photojournalist, released after 5 years and Aziza al-Yousef, Iman al-Nafjan and Dr. Ruqayyah al-Muharib, 3 Saudi women human rights activists, who spent more than 10 months in prison.

Good news like this is only possible because of the thousands of people who take action.



An ongoing project of the Anti-Violence Campaign for Peace 


The International Health & Epidemiology Research Center (IHERC) will be hosting the 
25th Annual PEACE DAY, with the goal of violence prevention and intervention. 

After being educated about the hazards of real and toy guns, children will turn in their toy guns and violent video games for a certificate and a reward at this event.

The collected weapons will then be used by the children, themselves, to create works of art. Those who draw or write something peaceful and toward non-violence will also receive a peace certificate. Previously created art will be on display, as well. 

This event will take place at the Kids' Village, as a part of the 2019 Irvine Global Village Festival; 
Orange County's Largest Multicultural Festival, which is attended by over 20,000 people. At this 
festival, more than 100 cultures will share their music, food, and art with visitors from throughout 
Orange County and beyond. 

WHEN: Saturday, October 12, 2019 and Sunday, October 13, 2019, 10 am -5 pm 
WHERE:Orange County Great Park. 8000 
Great Park Blvd., Irvine, CA 92618 
*Our booth is located in the Kid's Village; Booth # TBA 
COST:$5 festival entry fee; Peace Day is FREE 

Local Supporters: America Medical Imaging Center (Burbank), KIRN-670AM, Iranianhotline.com, 
08 Iranian & 50-50-100 Iranian 

For info about IHERC, please contact Janet: 818-244-4674, 818-788-2662, info@iherc.org, www.iherc.org 

For info about Irvine’s Global Festival 2019: cityofirvine.org//globalvillage or (949)724-6606 

Sunday, September 22, 2019

BANGLADESH: Let Rohingya Student Return to School - ONLINE ACTION

Amnesty International, Canada, September 20, 2019.

University student Rohima Akter Khushi has been suspended from classes in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh just because she is Rohingya.

Rohima was in her second semester of studying law at the International University.

After an international news agency featured the 20-year-old woman in a video story as one of the very few Rohingya young women to have been able to achieve academic excellence, the private university suspended her from continuing further education at the institution on September 6th, 2019. The university authorities told Amnesty International that they suspended her education because no Rohingya can study in any public or private university.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

INDIA: Let Kashmir Speak - ONLINE ACTION

Amnesty International, USA, September 11, 2019.

On 5 August the Government of India stripped the Kashmir region of its special autonomy and shut down all phone and internet access. The government now has near-total control over the information coming out of Kashmir, a place which has witnessed serious human rights violations in the past. 

The blackout affects the daily lives of Kashmir’s people: their emotional and mental well-being, as well as their access to medical care, basic necessities and emergency services. 

Now with reports of mass arrests and detentions, torture of civilians and the soldiers using tear gas, rubber bullets and pellet guns against protesters, we have grave concerns of human rights violations happening without the world’s knowledge.

CHINA: Execution Pending of Uyghur Academic - URGENT ACTION

Amnesty International, USA, September 9, 2019.

Fears are mounting that the Chinese authorities will imminently carry out the execution of Tashpolat Tiyip, a prominent Uyghur academic who was convicted in a secret and grossly unfair trial. Subjected to an enforced disappearance in 2017, he has been arbitrarily detained since then. No information has been made available about charges and proceedings against him and his current whereabouts remain unknown.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

IRAN: Outrageous Sentences - PRESS RELEASE

Amnesty International, September 9, 2019.

 From the Press Release:  “These outrageous sentences are just the latest to be meted out by Iran’s cruel justice system and expose the authorities’ complete disregard for journalists and workers’ rights. 

We call on the Iranian authorities to quash these unjust verdicts and cruel sentences and immediately and unconditionally release all seven individuals.”

Sunday, September 8, 2019

IRAN: 111 Years Imprisonment for Rights Workers - NEWS

Iran Human Rights, September 8, 2019.

Iran Human Rights (IHR) once again urges the international community to react to the Iranian authorities' intensified crackdown of the civil society and human rights defenders in recent months. 

IRAN: Executions Increase - NEWS

Iran Human Rights, September, 2019.

According to the Iran Human Rights statistic department, at least 38 people were executed in August 2019 in Iran, including two public hangings and 36 executions inside prisons. 

Most of those executed (30), were sentenced to qisas (retribution in kind) for murder charges. Six others were executed for drug-related charges and 2 for Moharebeh (waging war against God).

Iranian officials or media have only announced 13 executions in August 2019. The rest were confirmed by Iran Human Rights (IHR). Only unannounced executions confirmed by two independent sources are included in our reports. Therefore, the actual number of executions may be even higher than reported.

The number of executions in August 2019 shows a rise compared with the same period last year. In August 2018, at least 20 people were executed in Iran. Moreover, 185 people have been executed between January 1 and August 31, 2019. This figure also shows a rise compare to the same period last year which 165 executions were recorded.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

HONG KONG: Stop Extradition Bill - ONLINE ACTION

Amnesty International Australia. August 30, 2019.

Democracy campaigners in Hong Kong are not backing down. They are demanding their freedoms. Like you and I, they want to be able to peacefully protest without fear of violence or arrest. They want to know they can live safely, without the threat of being sent to abuse, even torture, in China.
Now, with news outlets reporting on the Hong Kong authority’s heavy-handed crackdown, we have a chance to dial up the global pressure and support protesters at this critical time.

Monday, September 2, 2019

USA: Amnesty International Banned Books - NEWS

Amnesty International, USA, Sept. 2, 2019.

Each year during Banned Books Week the American Library Associaon (ALA) calls attention to books that have been challenged in US Libraries. At the same time Amnesty International groups draw attention to people around the world who have been imprisoned, threatened, or murdered because of what they wrote or published or because of their work in the publishing or media industries. This year we look a small sample of many hundreds of worldwide cases while we continue to acknowledge and take action on unresolved cases from past years.