le 12 juillet, 2016
Defend the defenders of peoples' rights. Secure, encrypted email: firstname.lastname@example.org (end-to-end encryption)
le 12 juillet, 2016
July 12, 2016
Fresno County pays attorney Richard Berman $250,000 to end his civil-rights lawsuit
Berman contends a courthouse deputy used excessive force
He says courthouse security video supports his case
High-profile attorney Richard Berman has settled his federal civil-rights lawsuit against the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office for $250,000 in a case that he says solidifies a person’s right to question authority.
“They push people around all the time,” Berman said Tuesday. “Finally, someone stood up to them.”
In his lawsuit, Berman contended that a female sheriff’s deputy roughed him up in the lobby of the downtown Fresno criminal courthouse in March 2012, arrested him and publicly humiliated him in a dispute over a child’s plastic toy.
Berman, 69, and his lawyer, Jacob “Jack” Weisberg, said a courthouse security video proved Berman did nothing wrong.
“All he did was question authority,” Weisberg said. “The law gives people the right to talk back to police without fear of being arrested.”
July 12, 2016
July is often Beijing’s hottest month. The humidity is draining. Sometimes a thunderstorm breaks through the oppressive heat, for a while.
This time last year, lawyers across China found themselves at the eye of a different kind of storm. They were part of a community of ‘rights lawyers’, so-called because they work on ‘sensitive’ cases defending the rights of petitioners and victims of police abuse, for example.
By 12 July 2015, over a hundred had been detained, interrogated, or forcibly disappeared. Law firms were searched and shut down. Friends and relatives desperately tried to reach lawyers who had been summoned by the police. The Hong Kong-based China Human Rights Lawyers Concern Group posted updates every day, sometimes every few hours, as the number of lawyers detained continued to rise. The crackdown was not confined to Beijing: it stretched across the country, sweeping up not only rights lawyers but activists, family members and colleagues.
The crackdown has been criticised by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, a joint statement signed by 12-UN member states, and the UK Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, as well as numerous non-governmental organisations.
le 8 juillet, 2016
Ce vendredi 8 juillet, un an après que les autorités chinoises aient lancé une vague de répression sans précédent à l’encontre des avocats spécialistes des droits humains et des défenseurs des droits humains, des militants d’Amnesty International portant des toges d’avocats ont remis symboliquement à un panda devant l’ambassade de Chine à Bruxelles près de 10 500 signatures réclamant la fin de ces persécutions. Cette action fait suite au refus de la part de l’ambassade de recevoir des représentants de l’organisation, malgré leurs demandes répétées.
Il faut que les autorités chinoises cessent de s’en prendre aux avocats spécialistes des droits humains et aux défenseurs des droits humains comme elles le font depuis bientôt un an dans le cadre d’une répression sans précédent, a déclaré Amnesty International.
En effet, au moins 248 avocats spécialistes des droits humains et défenseurs des droits humains ont été pris pour cible au cours de la vague de répression nationale qui a débuté le 9 juillet 2015. Un an plus tard, 18 sont toujours derrière les barreaux et, parmi eux, neuf sont inculpés de « subversion du pouvoir de l’État » et passibles de la réclusion à perpétuité.
« Les avocats spécialistes des droits humains ont subi les foudres de la machine de répression secrète des autorités chinoises. Il faut que les avocats détenus soient libérés et que le régime cesse de s’attaquer systématiquement aux personnes qui défendent les droits de la population chinoise, a déclaré Roseann Rife, directrice des recherches sur l’Asie de l’Est à Amnesty International.
July 12, 2016
Dear President Juncker and President Tusk,
I write on the occasion of the forthcoming European Union-China Summit in Beijing, scheduled for July 12-13, 2016, to encourage you to place the deteriorating human rights situation in China high on the agenda both in your private meetings and your public messaging. In particular, we are concerned about the Chinese government’s brutal crackdown on peaceful dissent and freedom of expression, and the silencing of lawyers and activists who seek to hold the government to its human rights obligations.
We appreciate the EU’s Item 4 statement at the June United Nations Human Rights Council session on the deteriorating human rights environment in China and its January 2016 statement on detentions there. We also appreciate the EU’s diplomatic presence at high-profile trials of outspoken activists, and its support for civil society groups in China.
Since President Xi Jinping assumed power in March 2013, Chinese authorities have carried out an unrelenting crackdown on civil society groups, including those promoting workers’ rights, anti-corruption, and the rule of law—all issues essential to the realization of EU policy objectives in China. Despite the threat of reprisals from authorities, people across the country remain willing to challenge the government on such issues as pollution, tainted vaccines, and unpaid wages. Yet, without human rights lawyers to represent torture survivors in court, coercive interrogation will not be eradicated.
July 12, 2016
As the New York Times reported on June 30, three Kenyan men — Willie Kimani, Josephat Mwenda, and Joseph Muiruri — walked out of a Kenyan courthouse on June 23rd and were abducted. A week later they were found dead in a river.
They had gone to court that morning to pursue Mwenda’s case against local police, who had been harassing him. Police abuse, harassment, and impunity are facts of life in Kenya, and yet, Mwenda chose to take on a system that does not function for the people, but rather for its own self-preservation. He was accompanied by Kimani, an investigator for International Justice Mission, a global organization that works to protect the poor from violence around the world by bringing rescue, restoring survivors, ensuring convictions, and building capacity in broken public justice systems. Muiruri was their driver.
Their abduction immediately sounded alarms throughout Nairobi and Washington, where active human rights communities knew all too well how this story would unfold. Those who dare to challenge police abuse face an unrelenting, self-protecting system of impunity.
July 12, 2016
Abulkhair, 37, is one of the most visible representatives of Saudi Arabia’s beleaguered civil society. In 2008, he organized a 48-hour hunger strike to condemn the detention of a group of political prisoners known as the “Jeddah Reformers.” He has since continued to challenge the absolute monarchy by representing high-profile dissidents and calling for democratic reform. One of his former clients and brother in law was Saudi blogger Raif Badawi, who was himself convicted in 2013 for “insulting Islam” and sentenced to 10 years in prison, 1,000 lashes and a fine of 1 million Saudi riyals.
In 2009, Abulkhair founded the Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia(MHRSA), a civil society organization that reports on the abuses of the Saudi regime. He rapidly gained popularity in the region through his activism on social media. In 2015, Abulkhair was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize and awarded the Ludovic-Trarieux human rights international prize.