Thursday, November 1, 2012

Human Rights Action Updates Oct. 26-Nov. 1

Following communal violence in June, largely directed against the ethnic Rohingya, there is a growing humanitarian and human rights crisis which is not receiving sufficient international attention, and it is highly likely that many lives are being lost as a result. The Rohingya are Muslims who have lived in Burma for generations, but are still considered but are still regarded by the government as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh. The latter claims that it cannot accept additional refugees from Burma. The situation remains exceedinglygrim for these people.
Burmese police, security forces and soldiers are raping, looting, torturing and arbitrarily killing Rohingya people.
There have been mass arrests with Rohingya people kept in detention camps without trial, without food or medical services.
Amnesty International has issued a press release but not a UA. Burma Campaign UK has called on British subjects to write to their Foreign Minister.  We can only suggest a letter to the local foreign minister tailored to the situation in each country.  Israel has leverage in Burma so a letter to Avigdor Lieberman (the noted human rights advocate...) might help.
We start with a UA from Amnesty  On 24 September, a court in Viet Nam’s Ho Chi Minh City sentenced bloggers Nguyen Van Hai, known as Dieu Cay (“the peasant’s pipe”), Ta Phong Tan, and Phan Thanh Hai to 12, 10 and four years’ imprisonment respectively for “conducting propaganda” against the state. The trial lasted only a few hours and their friends and family were detained and assaulted to prevent them from attending. Please pick up on the action on behalf of these prisoners of conscience.

In addition two popular singers have been sentenced to prison for writing songs "critical of the state."

Vo Minh Tri and Tran Vu Anh Binh were sentenced to four and six years in prison, respectively, on charges of spreading propaganda against the state, said Tri's lawyer, Tran Vu Hai. They faced possible sentences of up to 20 years.
In a half-day trial, a court in Ho Chi Minh City accused the musicians of posting songs on a website operated by an overseas Vietnamese opposition group, Patriotic Youth, according to Hai. Communist Vietnam does not tolerate challenges to its one-party rule.
No action has been called for yet, but stay informed.

When does a week go by without some new human rights violations in China? We have a call on behalf of Ni Yulan, a human rights activist.
Ni Yulan still uses a wheelchair as a result of previous police torture. © Private  
Obviously the SMS campaign of AIUK is not for us, but scroll down and you will find the usual UA format.
Here is a link to a template letter. 
Ni Yulan is a lawyer who is fighting the wave of forced evictions that is rolling across China. It takes much courage for a lawyer to take up these cases.  Please get behind Ni Yulan.

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