December 14, 2016
On the morning 12 December 2016, human rights lawyer Ms Noemi Mendez arrived at work to find that the glass entrance door of her office in San Pedro de Macorís had been broken.
According to the human rights lawyer, no valuables were taken, and nothing seems to be missing. The human rights lawyer filed a complaint at the police station the same day. This is the second time that Noemi Mendez’ property has been damaged in the past few weeks, with her car also having been the target of vandalism a month ago.
The human rights lawyer has represented several individuals affected by the Constitutional Court ruling 168-13, from September 2013, which arbitrarily and retroactively deprived generations of people born and raised in the country of their Dominican nationality. In addition to aggravating long standing tensions between the Dominican Republic and Haiti, the ruling gave way to a rise of verbal and physical attacks led by so-called ‘nationalist’ groups against Dominicans of Haitian descent as well as migrants in the country.
December 14, 2016
The Cairo Criminal Court upheld on Wednesday a decision to seize the assets of rights lawyer Azza Soliman, while postponing the ruling on the same issue for Mozn Hassan, director of NGO Nazra for Feminist Studies, to 11 January, according to the Center for Egyptian Women’s Legal Assistance (CEWLA).
Both Soliman, CEWLA’s director, and Hassan stood before court on Monday to proceed with their appeals against the freezing decisions. The court decisions are related to the prosecution of civil society workers in the case publicly known as the “foreign funding case.”
In a Monday statement, Nazra said: “In [Monday’s] court session at Abbassiya Court, which looked into the request for the freeze of lawyer Azza Soliman’s assets and that of her law firm, a request was made for the asset freeze of human rights defender Mozn Hassan and Nazra for Feminist Studies, within the context of case no.173 for the year 2011, known as the ‘NGO foreign funding case’, as her name is listed in the case.”
December 15, 2016
Jiang Tianyong has remained untraceable since his disappearance on 21 November 2016. I however have continuously received information from indirect sources. Here below is information that I, after verification with prudence, confirm.
1. A residential premises in the northern district of Changping region of Beijing in where Jiang Tianyong once lived was broken in and searched by public security officers.
Source of information notes that on 4 December, plain clothes officers from Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau arrived at the premises with locksmith. They broke in and searched the property which Jiang Tianyong once resided. They also took away some personal belongings. As understood, police have stationed to monitor the premises for long hours multiple times.
2. Mo Xiaowei, tenant of the apartment in Changping which belongs to Jiang Tianyong’s younger brother, was taken away by police and cannot be contacted till now. His apartment has been searched.
Before the 709 crackdown in 2015, Jiang Tianyong occasionally stayed in his younger brother’s home. Jiang’s younger brother late rented the apartment to Mo Xiaowei who has nothing to do with Jiang. However, since 4 December, Mo’s phone has been switched off and he cannot be contacted since. Credible source confirmed that Mo was taken away by several police officers as well as plain clothes. His apartment was also raided. It is possible that the objectives of the public security officers were to search if there were any personal belongings of Jiang Tianyong, and at the same time, for controlling the tenant from leaking information.
Jiang Tianyong has disappeared for more than 20 days, we as family members have had no channel for any official information. The above incidents suffice to state that the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau is directly related to the enforced disappearance of Jiang Tianyong. I, on behalf of Jiang’s family, strongly condemn the act of enforced disappearance by the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau, the unlawful search of home and in particular, the implication done on individual unrelated to the case.
Phone contact of Jin: +1 (626) 223-0980
(source China Human Rights Lawyers Concern Group / 中國維權律師關注組 Facebook)
DAY OF THE ENDANGERED LAWYER JANUARY 24, 2017 (CHINA):
December 14, 2016
The Women Human Rights Defenders International Coalition is extremely concerned about the escalation of crackdown on Egyptian Women Human Rights Defenders (WHRDs) and NGOs. The Egyptian government has been using a politically motivated case, 173 of the year 2011 known as the NGO Foreign Funding Case, to carry out systematic crackdowns against NGOs and human rights defenders.
The latest development in this case occurred on December 7, 2016, when Azza Soliman, a prominent women’s rights defender and lawyer was arrested on the order of an investigative judge in Case 173. Police forces arrived at her house in the morning of December 7, arrested her and took her to a police station and then to the office of the investigative judge, where she was questioned. She was faced with three preliminary charges, including “receiving foreign funding to harm the state’s interests.” Under Egypt’s penal code, this could be sentenced with up to life imprisonment and a fine of 500,000 Egyptian pounds. She was released on bail after she paid 20,000 Egyptian pounds, pending further court hearings.
On December 14, a court hearing is expected to decide on the freezing of Azza Soliman’s personal and organizational bank accounts (her private law firm). It should be noted that Soliman has not been officially informed of the pending court hearing, and only learned about it through the media. Prior to this development, Azza Soliman was informed by her bank that her accounts had been frozen. Despite her insistence, no official document has been provided to explain the reason for the freezing of her assets. The bank has however referred to a November 17 verdict by the Cairo Criminal Court to freeze her assets on order of one of the judges in Case 173. The verdict however has not been presented to Azza Soliman or anyone from her law firm. On November 19, while at the airport and attempting to go to Jordan to attend a women’s rights meeting, Azza Soliman was informed that she had been banned from travel.