Posts Tagged ‘Human Rights and Liberties’

Kasha about the Ugandan law against homosexuality

December 23, 2013

The Ugandan parliament has now passed the bill that many feared would come one day. Although it does not foresee the death penalty anymore it still puts life jail terms on ‘aggravated homosexuality’. Back on 3 February 2013, Kasha Jacqueline Nabagesera, a Ugandan LGBT activist, who was the 2011 Laureate of the Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights, spoke with the Martin Ennals award about the risks and problems.

UN Human Rights Prize Winner Biram Dah Abeid writes to the UN about slavery

December 18, 2013

UN Human Rights Prize laureate, Mr. Biram Dah Abeid, has written a letter to the United Nations on the occasion of the ceremony on 10 December 2013. The letter, reproduced in its entirety, is available below courtesy of UNPO:

Praise the lord and peace be upon Prophet Mohamed, Read the rest of this entry »

“It’s human rights defenders that make human rights a reality”

December 17, 2013

This video clip was published on 5 December 2013 by the International Service for Human RightsHuman Rights experts, Hina Jilani, Mehr Khan Williams, Jean-Daniel Vigny, and Walter Kalin tell us why human rights defenders play a critical role and why supporting them is a good way to support the whole global human rights movement.

Human Rights TV is coming: here one of the first steps in Asia

December 16, 2013

I have often wondered why there is not a proper human rights (digital) TV channel. Technically is should be possible but it would require the true coöperation from the whole human rights movement to create a global channel. Glad to see that the Asian Human Rights Commission has started at least with a weekly programme. Here is episode 9 on Human Rights Day. Bravo!

“Better to die while speaking the truth” – human rights defenders in the DRC continue to be threatened

December 16, 2013

On 16 December Amnesty International came out with a special report on the death threats and intimidation by armed groups and state security forces in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo [North Kivu] over the past year have, with the aim of silencing human rights defenders, even after the defeat of M23.  The report “Better to die while speaking the truth” details the heightened clampdown on human rights defenders by armed groups and the national security forces since the crisis escalated last Amnesty-Internationayear.  “The whole population is vulnerable to human rights abuses in North Kivu and those speaking out to protect these people are deliberately targeted from all sides,” says Sarah Jackson, Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director. Read the rest of this entry »

Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders seeks urgently intern

December 14, 2013

The World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) is currently seeking to recruit a FULL TIME INTERN for the Urgent Campaigns and the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders. The non-remunerated position should be filled as soon as possible. Duration of the internship: minimum 3 months.OMCT-LOGO

Read the rest of this entry »

Guatemalan Human Rights Defenders Unit gets a Human Rights Award from the Guatemala Human Rights Commission

December 5, 2013

The Alice Zachmann Human Rights Defenders Award recognizes an individual, organization or community from Guatemala who has demonstrated a commitment to the defense of human rights through non-violent methods, and for which he/she has been exposed to threats, violence and/or other attacks. The award serves as a means to highlight the struggle of the recipient on an international level and represents a commitment by GHRC to provide ongoing support.

The award giver, the Guatemala Human Rights Commission [GHRC] presented the 2013 Award to the Guatemalan Human Rights Defenders Unit (UDEFEGUA) Read the rest of this entry »

Inputs requested for making a “context guide” for LGBTI security in Africa

December 3, 2013

For 10 years, Tactical Technology Collective have worked with human rights defenders, in order to help them better to protect their sensitive data, their communications, themselves and their communities when carrying out their work, through developing online resources, books, and carrying out regular trainings around the world. As part of this process, it has developed the “Security in a Box” book and toolkit ( which now receives around 200,000 visits per month.
However, in order to continue improving our materials and make digital security easier to understand and contextualise for specific communities of human rights defenders, they have begun a process of creating “context guides” which make the guide more accessible for certain communities at risk. The idea of this survey is to help create and improve such a guide, for LGBTI activists from Africa, which would help the community understand the need for healthy digital security practices by demonstrating the risks they face and providing stories of best practices from others in the community.
You can find the survey at If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Daniel Ó Clunaigh:
[to get an idea of such a guide, created for LGBTI human rights defenders from the Arabic-speaking world, see in English:]

Write for Rights – Amnesty International’s main campaign starts on 6 December

December 2, 2013

Write for Rights is one of Amnesty International’s major global campaigns

Write for Rights” is one of Amnesty International’s major global campaigns. AI is capable of getting its own outreach and does not need my blog but I want to refer to it anyway as it is such a quintessential human rights action model.   Read the rest of this entry »

The release of human rights defenders written up in a Lifestyle Magazine

November 29, 2013

Just as an example of how human rights defenders and the work to support them can appear in a Lifestyle Magazine:

Across Canada human rights supporters have recently been celebrating the releases of a number of prisoners of conscience—people jailed solely for the peaceful expression of their beliefs.

In China, poet and journalist Shi Tao was released after more than eight years in prison. Supporters of the human rights organization Amnesty International ( had long campaigned for his freedom by writing letters to the Chinese authorities and signing petitions calling for his release. Shi Tao was imprisoned in 2004 for sending an email using his Yahoo account. His email summarized a communiqué from the Chinese Central Propaganda Department telling journalists how they should handle the 15th anniversary of the crackdown on the 1989 pro-democracy movement. The Chinese authorities accused him of “illegally providing state secrets to foreign entities”. Shi Tao expressed his thanks to supporters: “The support and encouragement of friends from around the world have helped my mother and me through the difficult and lonely times.” Other prisoners of conscience recently released in China this year included human rights defender Ni Yulan, and Falun Gong practitioners Wang Xiuqing and her daughter Qin Hailong, released after 18 months in a “re-education through labour” camp.

In Iran, the sudden release of prisoner of conscience Nasrin Sotoudeh in September further showed how the passion and persistence of individual people around the world taking action by putting pen to paper can help human rights. Sotoudeh is widely respected for her work as a lawyer. She has represented children facing the death penalty, prisoners of conscience and human rights defenders, and has worked closely with Iranian Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shirin Ebadi. But in August 2010 Sotoudeh was locked up in Tehran’s notorious Evin prison though she had committed no crime. During her imprisonment, Nasrin was stopped from having regular visits with her husband, Reza Khandan, and two young children. Amnesty International declared her a prisoner of conscience and quickly launched a global appeal demanding her release. Supporters tirelessly wrote letters to the Iranian authorities requesting them to free the human rights lawyer. Their efforts helped win a great victory. Sotoudeh sent a thank you for the support she had received from people around the world. “I have been aware of all your efforts on my behalf and I want to thank you!

Human rights supporters celebrate recent prisoner releases : The Canadian Lifestyle Magazine.