Thursday, July 25, 2013

Human Rights Update July 19-25

Miriam, human rights defender, 1947-2012
China has been hyperactive recently in human rights violations and this will be reflected in this week's post.
We have activists at risk of torture.
A family is in danger of forced repatriation to North Korea.
Six human rights defenders face the risk of torture.

Please act on these cases. Faxes in China are iffy at best even in the offices of high officials. If fax does not work, letters in envelopes do get through.

Labor Issue: Coca-Cola claims to be an enlightened corporation. Call on them to prove it across their supply chain.

Pussy Riot are asking for parole. Please support them.

Seven members of the Russian band Pussy Riot, Russian Federation, January 2012. © Игорь Мухин

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Human Rights Update July 12-18

Miriam, human rights defender, 1947-2012
Warren Hill, the retarded man who was to have been executed last Monday has been granted a stay of execution. The stay is on the grounds of the provenance of the drugs that the state of Georgia obtained to carry out the execution. The source of the drugs has been declared a "state secret" and Hill's lawyers are claiming that they might be from an illegal source and their effects unknown.  We are bringing this to your knowledge for information only.

Herman Wallace has been in solitary confinement in Alabama for over 40 years. He is now ill with terminal cancer. Please join the call for a humanitarian release so he can die at home.

We have several labor-related matters this week.  We call for bargaining rights for Coca-Cola workers in Turkey. 
A union leader was shot and killed in the Philippines. Call for justice and an end to  impunity
Dodong - murdered for exposing corruption.
Antonio "Dodong" Petalcorin, the leader of a transport workers union in the Philippines, was shot dead on 2 July 2013 right in front of his home.

Workplace safety is a major issue in Bangladesh as we know too well from the disasters there. Please join the call for freedom of association. 
In India protests are rising at Suzuki's plant with 147 workers in jail and hunger strikes beginning. Please raise a voice of protest.

Support the campaign - click here.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Human Rights action update July 5-11

Miriam, human rights defender, 1947-2012
To all our Muslim friends and readers, we wish a Ramadan Kareem.

In Tajikistan, the police and security forces frequently resort to torture and other ill-treatment to obtain confessions. Many victims of torture in pre-trial detention are left with physical and psychological injuries requiring long-term treatment, some die in custody. Those who do survive, often end up in prison after an unfair trial.  Please act to put an end to this unacceptable practice.

Mother of torture victim  Lubat Burhanova cuts a single rose from her garden to lay on her son's grave. © Amnesty International/BHR                  

The 15 year old boy Sivasooriyakumar Sanaraj left his home in Ukkulankulam, near Vavuniya, to go to school as usual on the morning of 13 June, but never came back. The local police have done nothing to investigate the disappearance and one of the suspected kidnappers, when found by the boy's family boasted of his connections with the police.  Amnesty International continues to receive reports of enforced disappearances and abductions in Sri Lanka, particularly in the north of the country. These incidents are sometimes thought to be as a consequence of an individual’s political activity, human rights work or journalism, or sometimes for the purposes of extortion or other criminal enterprises. The Sri Lankan authorities have consistently failed to adequately investigate disappearances and abductions and bring perpetrators to justice. Please write to the authorities  to call for a thorough investigation.

The war to set global labour standards in the brewing industry is being fought in the Canadian city of St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador.
On one side, the Canadian division of the world's largest (and very profitable) brewing corporation, Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev).
On the other, one of the global giant’s smallest and most vulnerable local unions in what appears to be an attempt to establish a pattern of concessions and roll-backs that the corporation could then try to impose on all of its other unionized workers around the world.

Please step  up for union members in the brewing industry.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Human Rights Action Update June29-July4

Miriam, human rights defender, 1947-2012

First best wishes to our US readers for Independence Day and a belated greeting to our Canadian friends for Canada Day.

Please let Pepsico know that organizing a union is a  basic human right. 


Workers who are members of Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC) at West Bengal warehouses exclusively contracted by PepsiCo are fighting for fairness and justice in the face of mass dismissals as a result of exercising their right to join a union. 162 workers out of 170 have been brutally fired. Furthermore PepsiCo is using labour contractors that are not officially licensed (something that is mandatory). Workers are therefore not paid the current minimum wages set since January 1, 2013 and no social security payments are made for them as required by law.

Please respond to this urgent action appeal  on behalf the photographer Du Bin who is being persecuted for his peaceful human rights activity.   In 2005, Du Bin wrote his first book Petitioners: Living Fossil Who Survived China’s Rule of Law , which documents the stories of millions of people who travelled to Beijing every day in an attempt to seek redress for the injustices they faced in their home towns as well as the violence, unfair treatment, and even death they faced when trying to report local corruption. Since then, Du
Bin has written several books covering a range of topics, including on the investigation into violent forced evictions in Shanghai, the deaths of hundreds of thousands of peasants from starvation during Mao Zedong’s rule, and a recently released book that details the violent crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators in Tiananmen Square in 1989. His books are all published overseas I have provided a template letter. 
You just need erase my information and edit it to your taste.

Most people didn't know who the Rwandans were until it was too late, and 800,000 of them were dead. Right now, the fate of Burma's Muslim Rohingya is hanging by a thread. Racist thugs have distributed leaflets threatening to wipe out this small Burmese minority. Already children have been hacked to death and unspeakable murders committed. All signs are pointing to a coming horror, unless we act. Please sign this AVAAZ petition.

Again I call for attention to the fate of tribal people who are under threat of extinction.  Tribal peoples do not just die out. They’re killed—and the people killing them have names and addresses.

Your letters and petitions help tribal peoples win recognition of their land rights, put an end to logging or mining on their land, and halt government violence and oppression.
→ It works!