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  • Death Penalty

USA: Florida set to conduct its first execution in a year and a half

Ahead of a planned resumption of executions in Florida on 24 August, 18 months after the last one, Amnesty International is issuing a paper on recent developments relating to the death penalty in the US state. “Death in Florida” outlines the state’s response to the January 2016 US Supreme Court decision that Florida’s capital sentencing law was unconstitutional, and the governor’s reaction to a prosecutor’s subsequent decision to reject the death penalty.

Date:
21 August 2017
  • News
  • Middle East and North Africa
  • Armed Conflict

Yemen: Activist detained by Huthi-Saleh forces must be freed

Yemen’s Huthi-Saleh forces must immediately and unconditionally release a leading political activist who has been arbitrarily detained in the capital Sana’a since 14 August without access to a lawyer or his family, Amnesty International has said. Hisham al-Omeisy, 38, was arbitrarily detained at approximately 2. 45pm on 14 August in Jawlat al-Misbahi, south Sana’a, when approximately 15 armed security officers from the National Security Bureau (NSB) took him away.

Date:
18 August 2017
  • News
  • South Africa
  • Justice Systems

South Africa must reassert commitment to human rights as it prepares to lead SADC

South Africa must take a strong lead in addressing ongoing threats to basic human rights across the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region, Amnesty International said ahead of the 37th Heads of State Summit in Pretoria. The country takes over from Swaziland as chair of the regional bloc at a time when several member states – including Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Zambia and Zimbabwe – face major political instability linked to elections that has put freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association in jeopardy.

Date:
18 August 2017
  • News
  • Hong Kong
  • Censorship and Free Speech

Hong Kong: “Vindictive” jail terms for pro-democracy leaders

The Hong Kong authorities’ relentless pursuit of jail terms for three leaders of the pro-democracy movement is a vindictive attack on freedom of expression and peaceful assembly, Amnesty International said. On Thursday, Hong Kong’s Court of Appeal handed Joshua Wong, Alex Chow and Nathan Law between six and eight months in prison for their roles in a demonstration that helped spark the city’s 2014 pro-democracy Umbrella Movement.

Date:
17 August 2017
  • News
  • Africa
  • Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

Sierra Leone: Housing and environmental failures behind shocking scale of mudslide deaths

The terrible aftermath of the mudslides in Sierra Leone, which have left more than 3000 people homeless, grimly illustrates the human cost of the government’s failure to implement housing and land policies, said Amnesty International. Over 400 people were killed in the mudslide, which struck in the early hours of Monday 14 August in the Regent community of the capital, Freetown, with victims largely those living in informal settlements.

Date:
17 August 2017
  • News
  • South Sudan
  • Refugees

Uganda: International community must avert growing crisis as number of South Sudanese refugees reaches a million

The international community must deliver and improve on existing financial commitments to help Uganda support the refugees it is hosting, following a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) announcement that one million South Sudanese refugees are now in the country, Amnesty International said today. Driven by the ongoing violence in South Sudan, refugees have been entering Uganda in their thousands, especially since the spread of the conflict to formerly peaceful areas after July 2016.

Date:
17 August 2017
  • News
  • Asia and The Pacific
  • Unlawful Killings

Indonesia: At least 60 killed as police shootings of drug suspects skyrocket

The number of police killings of suspected drug dealers has skyrocketed in Indonesia this year, an alarming rise which signals that authorities could be looking to emulate the murderous “war on drugs” in neighbouring Philippines, Amnesty International said today. At least 60 suspected drug dealers have been killed by police – some of whom have been seconded to the National Narcotics Agency (BNN) - since 1 January 2017, compared to 18 in all of 2016, according to data gathered by Amnesty International.

Date:
16 August 2017
  • News
  • Americas
  • Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

Nicaragua: Authorities threaten protest against construction of canal

For several hours yesterday, Nicaraguan police officers prevented communities from participating in a peaceful march against the construction of the Interoceanic Grand Canal in Nicaragua. The march, organised by the National Council in Defence of our Land, Lake and Sovereignty, was the 91st protest against the project which will affect thousands of people. The renowned human rights defender Bianca Jagger also participated in the massive demonstration.

Date:
16 August 2017
  • News
  • Libya
  • Armed Conflict

Libya: ICC arrest warrant for Special Forces commander raises hopes for justice

Responding to news that the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a warrant today for the arrest of Mahmoud el-Werfelli, who is accused of war crimes for actions committed while he was Field Commander of the Special Forces Brigade (Al-Saiqa) affiliated to the Libyan National Army (LNA), Amnesty International’s North Africa Research Director Heba Morayef said: “Today’s decision by the ICC is a significant step towards ending the rampant impunity for war crimes in Libya.

Date:
15 August 2017
  • News
  • Kenya
  • Human Rights Defenders and Activists

Kenya: Attempts to shut down human rights groups unlawful and irresponsible

Responding to attempts by Kenya’s NGO regulator to shut down two human rights organizations – the Kenya National Human Rights Commission (KHRC) and the African Centre for Open Governance (AfriCOG) - Michelle Kagari, Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes, said: “The NGO Coordination Board’s decision must be seen for what it really is - a cynical attempt to discredit human rights organizations.

Date:
15 August 2017
  • News
  • Middle East and North Africa
  • Death Penalty

Iran: Scheduled execution of man arrested as teenager is an all-out assault on children’s rights

The planned execution on Wednesday morning of Mehdi Bohlouli, who was only a child at the time of the crime, just days after the hanging of another man arrested as a child, is a sickening act of cruelty that must be stopped immediately, said Amnesty International today. Mehdi Bohlouli was transferred to solitary confinement in Raja’i Shahr Prison in Karaj, near Tehran, on Monday morning. His family have been told to go to the prison for their final visit today.

Date:
15 August 2017
  • News
  • Egypt
  • Killings and Disappearances

Egypt: Rampant impunity for security forces illustrates dark legacy of Rabaa massacre

Four years since security forces violently dispersed two sit-ins at Rabaa al Adawiya and al-Nahda squares in Greater Cairo, leaving at least 900 people dead and thousands more injured, Egypt is experiencing an unprecedented human rights crisis, said Amnesty International. Not a single person has been held to account for the events on 14 August 2013, widely known as the Rabaa massacre. Instead, hundreds who attended the protests, including journalists and photographers who were covering the events, have been arrested and are facing an unfair mass trial.

Date:
14 August 2017
  • News
  • South Africa
  • Business and Human Rights

South Africa: Five years on, Marikana victims still wait for justice

Victims of the bloody tragedy at Marikana, in which 34 protesters were killed and at least 70 were injured by members of the South African Police Service (SAPS) during a mining strike, are still awaiting justice five years on, Amnesty International said today. The organization is calling on the South African authorities to ensure that those suspected of criminal responsibility in relation to the 2012 killings are brought to trial, and that the victims and their families receive reparations, including adequate compensation.

Date:
14 August 2017
  • News
  • United States of America
  • Discrimination

USA: President Trump must condemn racial and ethnic hatred

In response to today’s events in Charlottesville, Virginia, Amnesty International USA Deputy Executive Director of Campaigns and Membership, Njambi Good, issued the following statement: “The authorities must act to deescalate tensions in Charlottesville and take immediate steps to counter hate against people of color, immigrants, refugees, Jews, Muslims and others. "Every time the Trump administration equivocates on white supremacy, it risks emboldening more acts of violence, harassment and discrimination.

Date:
12 August 2017
  • News
  • Kenya
  • Unlawful Killings

Kenya: Investigate police killings of pro-opposition protesters

The Kenyan authorities must investigate reports that police shot dead demonstrators protesting against the outcome of the presidential election last night, said Amnesty International today as protesters started gathering again in opposition strongholds. As celebrations began in pro-government areas after Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the winner of the presidential election, supporters of opposition leader Raila Odinga poured onto the streets in parts of Nairobi and Kisumu to protest the outcome.

Date:
12 August 2017
  • News
  • China
  • Detention

China: Trial of prominent activist ‘The Butcher’ a cruel farce

The Chinese authorities must end their persecution of prominent activist Wu Gan and immediately and unconditionally release him, Amnesty International said, ahead of his expected trial on Monday. Wu Gan, better known by his pen name ‘The Super Vulgar Butcher’, is to be tried at a closed court hearing in Tianjin for “subverting state power” – a charge that carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

Date:
11 August 2017