Amnesty International UK is addressing this crisis on a number
of levels, particularly in ensuring the safety of Amnesty
workers and supporters in Russia and Ukraine.
please read this impassioned report
Our Amnesty York group meets monthly to plan campaigns, lobbying
and fundraising events. We are always looking to welcome new
members to the group. No prior knowledge required - just an
interest in protecting human rights!
Join us on the second Tuesday of each month at 7.30pm. Meetings are currently taking place via Zoom or at the Friends Meeting House, York. more details
Our group is made up of like minded people who want to do
their bit to protect humanity and human rights around the
We organise fundraisers such as: quizzes, ceilidhs and writing competitions.
We do letter writing to support prisoners of conscience. Our group enjoys links with local organisations such as York Pride and Refugee Action Week.
We often welcome specialist speakers to our meetings, who share their first hand experiences as human rights defenders around the world. Our aim is to spread awareness of the important work of Amnesty International and encourage active engagement in standing up for human rights.
Amnesty International is the world's largest grassroots human
rights organisation. It has more than 10 million members
worldwide. Amnesty works to protect people wherever justice,
freedom, truth and dignity are denied.
They investigate and expose abuses, educate and mobilise the public, and help transform societies to create a safer, more just world. Visit the Amnesty International Website to find out more.
to be held on Osbaldwick Green (opposite the church) Saturday, 9th July, 2.00 p.m.
We’d welcome any donations of bric a brac, books, jewellery, toys, handbags, plants, cakes (on the day), to aid fundraising for the ongoing human rights work of Amnesty International.
If you have any items please message us (bottom of this page) and we can arrange delivery or collection. Thanks you.
Our thanks to St Thomas’ Church for offering Amnesty a stall.
York artist Linda Combi has created beautiful cards to support the work of UNHCR current crisis. They’re A5 folded cards with designs on both sides, and include envelope.
York Amnesty member, Barbara Lodge reports:
This week the Russian government closed the The International Memorial Society, founded with the help of Nobel Peace laureate Andrei Sakharov during the last years of the Soviet Union; it remembered, often through prisoners' personal effects, the brutality of the Gulag. In 2003, I was one of the AIUK trainers running campaign workshops with Russian AI supporters in Moscow and Tomsk in Siberia. In Moscow, we used the museum area of the Memorial building - no space on the walls - all work done on easels and the floor! Display cases showed prisoners' belongings - and also "resistance" culture, e.g. here The Beatles.
An individual has a right to seek asylum anywhere in the world. In practice it is easier in some places than others....
Another action for Azza Soliman, our friend of Amnesty York and human rights colleague
As we know, the charges against Azza have been lifted. Unfortunately, the travel ban and freezing of assets remain. There is an appeal against these restrictions on December 13th. Please:
- Send a letter by email to the President of Egypt (copy email to the Egyptian ambassador in London) supporting her appeal. Use the draft below, ideally personalised for more impact.
- Tweet any or all of the Twitter messages below.
……………………….. Dear President, email@example.com
Azza Soliman and Case 173
I warmly welcome the news that the case against many human rights defenders and NGO workers in Case 173/2011 has been dropped. However I am concerned that their travel bans and asset freezes have not been lifted. This includes Azza Soliman, founder of CEWLA, the Centre For Egyptian Women's Legal Assistance. Her case was dropped in August 2021, yet she is still under a travel ban and assets freeze despite the judge lifting these restrictions. Her third hearing appealing to have these restrictions lifted is set for 13th December.
I am therefore asking that:
• all restrictions against Azza Soliman be lifted.
• the authorities drop Case 173 completely.
• the authorities lift all travel bans and stop all asset freezes against all human rights defenders still subject to these measures.
I welcomed Egypt’s publication of its Human Rights Strategy. It is clear to me that closing Case 173 completely would be in line with this strategy.
Cc Ambassador Tarek Ahmed Ibrahim Adel firstname.lastname@example.org
………………………. Messages for those on Twitter
Free @AzzaSoliman1 from all restrictions at her hearing on 13th December #CloseCase173 @AlsisiOfficial
Allow #AzzaSoliman to use her assets and to travel #CloseCase173 @AlsisiOfficial
The judge dropped #AzzaSoliman's case. Why haven't her restrictions been dropped? #CloseCase173 @AlsisiOfficial
Tag the North Africa team on Twitter @AIUKCCNAT
You can write your own letter/email or use/adapt the template at https://freealaa.net/take-action (You can go into the template to get the information without actually sending it.)
In your letter/email please state that you are a constituent of the MP state that you are a member of AmnestyUK personalise the letter ask your MP to write to the Foreign Secretary, Liz Truss, asking her to do everything in her power to provide consular visits to Alaa, a British citizen, as soon as possible. You can point out additional factors such as other MPs have also done this Egypt has broken its own laws in how it has treated Alaa the leverage the UK has through being partners with Egypt for COP27 asking for Alaa to be released and allowed to come to the UK As this is not an Amnesty letter, we are not putting it up on social media.
Having said that, if you use Twitter, please follow @AIUKCCNAT as I am tweeting about Alaa every day.
Thanks to the many of you who were able to attend the meeting with Alaa's sister, Mona Seif, and cousin, Omar Hamilton, yesterday. They were very encouraged by your engagement with Alaa's case. They asked us not to record the meeting but there will be a write up in the Ezine which is coming out in a few days.
Joe and I will be continuing to send out regular actions for Alaa but please feel free to create your own actions in your groups, and to share these with us.
We welcomed members' suggestions for other actions at the meeting. If anyone knows a celebrity, it would be really good to get them involved now. Joe is looking into this too. In the longer term we are looking at a petition and embassy actions.
Thanks for your commitment to Alaa
Human rights make everyone happy. Here is Amnesty York in 2015 jigging around York happily with their favourite human rights to Pharrell Williams’ “Happy". Don’t let the government take this human rights happiness away from you (and everyone else).
Amnesty York’s installation of the sea with a flotilla of origami boats (folded by Amnesty York, York for Europe and RAY) was displayed in the Minster’s South Piazza by the Roman column on Saturday October 23rd. This was in recognition of the thousands of people who try to cross the Mediterranean each year.
The display was the focus of many passers-by throughout the day. It was also an opportunity to make new Amnesty friends and meet up with established York group members. The Revd Canon Michael Smith joined us to express his support and undertook to remember those who perish in this way at evensong at the Minster.
Of those fleeing their homelands, some seek asylum, some flee poverty. This year, more than 700 (and counting) have drowned.
The stream of people will not stop until the world works together to solve the problems which send them on their journey. In the meantime, Amnesty International is pressing for:
— the creation of safe and legal routes to Europe for asylum-seekers (to put an end to people smuggling) along with a fair asylum assessment procedure.
- the end of the practice by FRONTEX, the EU border force, in cooperation with the Libyan coastguard of forcing people back to holding camps in Libya where they are forgotten, ill-treated and die.
- the end of prosecutions of people and organisations such as Médecins sans Frontières and Save The Children International for saving lives at sea (as is current, for example, in Italy).
* NB There are about 26 million refugees worldwide. In 2020, the UK had 35,770 asylum applications.
Posted by Amnesty International UK
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