|Miriam, human rights defender, 1947-2012|
FIJI ABOLISHES THE DEATH PENALTYA couple of weeks ago, on 13 February, we woke up to the good news that Fiji had joined the ranks of countries and had abolished the death penalty for all crimes. There are now 99 countries who have completely scrapped the ultimate cruel and inhuman punishment from their laws – exactly half of all states in the world.
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 focus on the Jawara of Andaman Island, India. The tribes of the Andaman Islands – the Jarawa, Great Andamanese, Onge and Sentinelese – are believed to have lived in their Indian Ocean home for up to 55,000 years.
Poachers enter the Jarawa’s forest and steal the animals the tribe rely on for their survival. They have also introduced alcohol and marijuana and are known to sexually abuse Jarawa women.
In 1999 and 2006, the Jarawa suffered outbreaks of measles – a disease that has wiped out many tribes worldwide following contact with outsiders. Please act to protect them. The Web page will show you how.
ZIMBABWEJournalist and pro-democracy activist, Itai Dzamara, was abducted on the morning of 9 March by five men while at a barber shop in Harare’s Glen View suburb. The men accused him of stealing cattle before handcuffing him and driving off with him in a white truck. His whereabouts are unknown. Please act for him.
HONDURASA Honduran journalist received a verbal death threat and has faced discrimination, believed to be in connection to his journalistic work. There is fear for his safety. Please act for him.
AUSTRALIANUW fights for the rights of workers exploited by poultry company while on holiday in Australia. Travelers and backpackers work to support their holidays. The biggest poultry processing company in Australia employs them and exploits them. B&E Poultry and their subcontractors pay their employees' wages that are below the legal minimum. Their workers are now owed tens of thousands of dollars in back pay and B&E is refusing to pay up. Backpackers in Australia on working holidays have joined the NUW and are demanding back pay now!
Go here to sign the union petition to demand the company pay dozens of backpackers who are owed tens of thousands in backpay! B&E poultry should abide by Australian workplace law and stop exploiting workers on holiday in Australia that have language barriers or a lack of Australian workplace knowledge.