human-rights-defenders

India: Kashmiri Human Rights Activist Arbitrarily Detained

Khurram Parvez, a prominent Kashmiri human rights defender, has been placed in administrative detention a day after a court ordered his release on 20 September. He was previously prevented from flying to the UN Human Rights Council session in Geneva without any official explanation and arrested on 16 September.

Khurram Parvez was arrested on 16 September and placed in administrative detention in Kupwara, over 100 kilometres from his home in Srinagar, for allegedly posing an imminent threat of ‘breach of peace’. The detention order was based on a police report which claimed that policemen had seen Khurram Parvez on 15 September standing outside a mosque inciting people to shout slogans and march towards a government building. His wife has denied the claim, saying that they were at her parents’ house in another part of the city at the time.

On 20 September, a court in Srinagar ordered Khurram Parvez to be released after ruling that the executive official who ordered the detention had not followed necessary procedures including by failing to adequately explain the grounds for his detention. As soon as Khurram Parvez was released, he was again detained and transferred to a police station in Srinagar. His lawyers say that the police are holding him in administrative detention under the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act, but the police have not provided any reasons for the detention. He is being detained in the Kot Bhalwal Jail in Jammu, about 300 kilometres from his home in Srinagar.

On 14 September, Khurram Parvez was stopped at Delhi’s International Airport and prevented from travelling to the UN Human Rights Council Session in Geneva. He was not given any official explanation by the immigration officer, only that he needed approval by the Intelligence Bureau before travelling.

Khurram Parvez uses a prosthetic leg. His left leg was amputated due to a landmine injury in 2004.

Please write immediately in English or your own language calling on authorities in Jammu and Kashmir:

  • To immediately and unconditionally release Khurram Parvez or charge him with an internationally recognizable criminal offence and try him in accordance with international standards;
  • Pending his release, ensure Khurram Parvez is not subjected to torture or any other ill-treatment, and that he has regular and unrestricted access to his lawyers and provided adequate medical care and attention;
  • To immediately lift any travel bans imposed on him.


PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 3 NOVEMBER 2016 TO:

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Remove Obstacles to the Work of Women’s Rights Defenders

Human rights defenders and civil society organisations working to protect the human rights of women and gender equality perform an essential role in Europe. They provide much needed assistance to victims of gender-based violence, combat discrimination against women, contribute to peace-building and hold authorities accountable for fulfilling their human rights obligations. Unfortunately, as I learned at a roundtable with a group of women’s rights defenders in Vilnius in July, they also face serious obstacles in their work…

Breaking one of Canada’s best kept secrets: MMIW

Audrey Huntley will be speaking at the Nobel Women’s Initiative conference on the Defence of Women Human Rights Defenders, April 24-26, The Hague.  
Canada is not often seen as a place where widespread human rights violations against the indigenous population occur on a regular basis.

Much of the international community’s perception of this country is still that of pristine nature and polite inhabitants with health care.

In fact, Canada’s indigenous population is over-policed and under-protected, both men and women are incarcerated at rates much higher than the non-indigenous population and face police violence and deaths in custody all too often.

Yet our own mainstream media is finally no longer able to ignore one of this settler colonial country’s best-kept secrets: Ongoing genocidal violence against the indigenous population — and more specifically the targeting of indigenous women, girls, transgender and two-spirited people.

Continue Reading.

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“Defending human rights in Honduras is a crime. They are criminalizing the right to our [indigenous] identity and sense of self.” -Berta Cáceres, 2013

Gunmen brutally murdered Berta Cáceres, award-winning leader of the Council of Indigenous and Popular Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), in La Esperanza, Honduras on March 3, 2016. Almost immediately, the Honduran authorities jumped to the conclusion that she must have been killed in a robbery. Read more.

When Women Human-Rights Activists Are in Danger, It’s Women Who Come to Their Rescue

“In many regions of the world, women working to foster nascent democratic movements or champion human rights face imprisonment or worse… More often than not, the individuals doing the complicated, dangerous work of assisting the activists are also women. One such organization, the Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID), coordinates everything from liaising with embassies and the United Nations to matching imperiled activists with potential relocation partners." 

Last year, AWID worked to assist 160 women human rights defenders globally, and in the first quarter of 2015 has taken on 37 cases.

The very sight of a child brings joy to our heart and a smile on our face. #praytoEndAbortion #prolife

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María Ligia Chaverra (featured in the video above)

She is a human rights defender in the Afro-Colombian community from Curbaradó River Basin, Las Camelias Humanitarian Zone who is facing threats from both sides of the armed conflict.

A land rights leader, she has faced intimidation and harassment by armed groups, as well as constantly facing risk of displacement from the Colombian state and military.

By establishing Humanitarian Zones, María and other land rights leaders have been able to denounce such attacks and the theft used to displace communities.

Watch the video to learn more about María and the humanitarian zones of the Curbaradó and Jiguamiando basins.

I’d like to add, in light of recent conversations going around Tumblr, that is it perfectly all right to blog about what you don’t like. If you don’t understand a ship, or a character, or a show, and you want to post about it, feel free. Because in the end, it’s your blog and you can post whatever you want. 

But

Don’t tag it. Don’t tag your anti-ship stuff with the ship name. Don’t tag your character hate with the character name. Tag it anti ~ship~ or ~character~ hate. Let people who like the thing like it. 

And people who like something–as long as those who don’t aren’t being mean about it, leave them alone. This goes for morally grey characters, too. If you’re fascinated by their complexity, that’s cool. But if other fans of the show or movie or book find them less redeemable than you do… that doesn’t mean they don’t understand the character, or that they need to read the books again. It means they view the character differently than you do, and that needs to be okay. 

telesurtv.net
Honduras: Indigenous Leader Murdered Despite Police Protection
Several unknown assailants broke into Caceres' home early Thursday (March 2 2016) and killed her. She was a prominent Indigenous and social movement leader.

Berta Caceres, the coordinator and co-founder of the Council of Indigenous Peoples of Honduras, or COPIHN, was killed by unknown assailants early Thursday morning. 

 teleSUR correspondent in Honduras, Gilda Silvestruci, confirmed that Caceres was killed at 1:00 a.m. local time inside her home in La Esperanza in the western province of Intibuca. 

 Caceres was leader of the Lenca Indigenous community and was a staunch human rights defender. She won the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize in 2015. 

 “Berta Caceres is one of the leading indigenous activists in Honduras. She spent her life fighting in defense of indigenous rights, particularly to land and natural resources,” said Karen Spring, Honduras-based coordinator of the Honduras Solidarity Network, in a statement. “Her death will have a profound impact on the many Lenca communities that she worked with, COPINH, the Honduran social movement, and all that knew her.”

By a nearly unanimous vote, the American Psychological Association’s Council of Representatives has voted to adopt a new policy barring psychologists from participating in national security interrogations. The resolution puts the APA on the side of international law by barring psychologists from working at Guantánamo, CIA black sites and other settings deemed illegal under the Geneva Conventions or the U.N. Convention Against Torture, unless they’re working directly for detainees or independent third parties defending human rights. Tune in to Democracy Now! for our special report from the APA’s annual meeting.

medium.com
[August 9th] is International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples.
Here are the activists at risk for defending them.
By Front Line Defenders

When members of Juan Francisco Martínez’s community found his body in January 2015, his body bore marks of torture. One of his hands was still tied with what appeared to be laces from military boots.

Juan, a human rights defender and indigenous Lenca man from Honduras, was found on 5 January 2015 in the village of Tapuyman in the Santa Elena Municipality of La Paz, Honduras. He had been killed the day before.

For more than a year prior to his murder, Juan and his family received death threats related to his activism.

Juan was a member of the Lenca Independent Movement of La Paz (MILPAH). He fought for his community’s rights to water and land. Human rights defenders from MILPAH — like defenders of indigenous peoples’ rights around the world — face extreme risks from governments, corporations, and other non-state actors, including violent armed groups. Members of MILPAH, including 2016 Front Line Defenders Award Winner Ana Mirian Romero, have been threatened and assaulted. Others have been killed.

Indigenous peoples’ rights defenders work in some of the most dangerous conditions in the world, and are often removed from urban networks of support and protection.

Their battle for rights is intimately tied to their food and water security, and their struggles often intersect with fights for land and environmental rights.

To mark International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples on 9 August, Front Line Defenders is honouring the work of 4 human rights defenders who face immense risks advocating on behalf of their own indigenous communities.

To support the work of these incredible individuals at risk, learn more about them below and share their stories. To learn more about human rights defenders working on Land, Environmental, and Indigenous Peoples’ Rights, visit FrontLineDefenders.org.

If you want to be a human rights defender, you have to understand that you can’t do it because you’re expecting results. If you expect results you’re going to lose hope and you’re not going to be able to continue. You become a human rights defender because it’s the right thing to do.

You’re doing the right thing because you need to do the right thing. Because the right thing needs to be done. Because people’s rights need to be fought for. 

Because imagine if everyone stopped doing that.

Even if it doesn’t change things for the better, how much worse would it be if human rights defenders decided to no longer defend human rights?
—  Maryam Al-Khawaja, Bahraini human rights activist, sharing advice from her parents.
2012 was the worst year so far to be an environmental defender, with 147 killings – nearly three times more than in 2002.
—  The problem is particularly acute in Latin America and South East Asia. Brazil is the most dangerous place to defend rights to land and the environment, with 448 killings, followed by Honduras (109) and the Philippines (67).
VILLAGERS FACING VIOLENCE

NAME: NABI SALEH VILLAGE

LOCATION: OCCUPIED PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES

The 550 people living in Nabi Saleh village are facing frequent violent repression from the Israeli army.

Since 2009, the villagers have held weekly peaceful protests against Israel’s military occupation and the illegal Israeli settlement of Halamish, which has taken over most of their farmland. Despite court orders, the settlers have also turned the village water spring into a tourist attraction, which Nabi Saleh residents are prevented from using.

The Israeli army responds to the villagers’ peaceful protests with excessive and unnecessary force. So far they have killed two people, Mustafa Tamimi and Rushdi Tamimi and injured hundreds, including women and children.

The Israeli army also intimidates the villagers by, for example, declaring the whole village a closed military zone, carrying out night raids, arresting children, and arbitrarily using weapons such as tear gas, which is fired at homes and causes injury and damage.

- Write a letter to the Minister of Defence, calling on him to stop the Israeli security forces using excessive and unnecessary force against demonstrators in Nabi Saleh.
- Show solidarity with the villagers of Nabi Saleh, by sending a letter or a card, or leaving a message on the village Facebook page.

Take an action on behalf of the village of Nabi Saleh in our website: http://www.amnesty.ie/letterwriting

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Today, December 9, 2013, marks the 15th anniversary of the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Defenders! Read up on what the declaration is all about http://bit.ly/1cx5Krv and find out how you can support projects such as the Natalia Project who work to support and enhance the protection of human rights defenders around the world.