Daily Archives: 18/05/2018

China: Lawyer Xie Yanyi assaulted, detained during impending disbarment proceedings

May 18, 2018

Xie Yanyi

On 16 May 2018, human rights lawyer Xie Yanyi (谢燕益) attended a formal review hearing at the Beijing Lawyers’ Association to determine whether infractions allegedly committed by the defender are sufficient to warrant the revocation of his license to practice law. He stands accused of unspecified violations in connection to his representation of a client in a freedom of religion case. Before entering the building, police physically assaulted the defender. After the review hearing, Xie Yanyi and his wife were detained for several hours. Based on recent persecution of China’s human rights lawyers, Xie Yanyi is likely to face imminent revocation of his legal license.

In April 2018, Xie Yanyi first noticed that his legal license had been marked “void” on the Beijing Justice Bureau’s website, after which he was legally unable to practice. On 4 May, the Beijing Lawyers’ Association notified the human rights defender that a hearing would be held on 16 May to discuss the alleged violation of regulations in the course of his legal representation of client accused of “using an evil religious organization to undermine the rule of law”. On 13 May, Xie Yanyi requested that the hearing be postponed on the basis that he had not been given sufficient access to the evidence being used to support the government’s allegations. His request was denied.

On 16 May, at the entrance to the Beijing Lawyers’ Association, a journalist accompanying Xie Yanyi was stopped and his identification was taken by police. When the officers refused to return the identification, Xie Yanyi took the identification from the officer’s hand. The officer responded by grabbing the lawyer by the throat, thus injuring him and tearing his shirt. Officers then brought Xie Yanyi to the review hearing.

After the hearing, lawyer associates of Xie Yanyi, who had attended the hearing, announced that Xie Yanyi had been taken away by police. He was released approximately five hours later.

https://www.frontlinedefenders.org/en/case/xie-yanyi-assaulted-detained

http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/community/article/2146857/beijing-police-claim-hong-kong-journalist-they-dragged-away

https://www.tolerance.ca/ArticleExt.aspx?ID=396126&L=en

http://www.idhae.org/OBSAV-fr-wewschi191605.htm (FRANCAIS)

Kenya/Canada: Miguna files new petition for return trip to Kenya

May 18, 2018

Miguna files new petition for return trip to Kenya

Embattled lawyer Miguna Miguna has filed a fresh case seeking court orders to grant him unconditional entry into Kenya.

This come barely a day after he cancelled his trip back to the country.

In the application, Miguna wants the court to direct that his perforated passport be released to the Kenya National Commission Human Rights(KNCHR).

Through his lawyer John Khaminwa, Miguna said the human rights agency will then present it to Immigration on the day he decides to return.

The fiery lawyer is accusing the Kenyan Government, Interior CS Fred Matiang’i and Immigration Department of not obeying court orders.

According to him, he has been denied his right to appear in court and present his evidence.

“The Government is deliberately seeking and acting to impede and obstruct the ability of the court to administer justice effectively or at all to hear and determine the petition expeditiously,” reads the petition that was filed at the Milimani Law Court.

According to the court documents, KNHCR wrote to Maj. Gordon Kihalangwa on May 5, giving notice of Miguna’s intended return on May 16.

In the notice, the organization asked the government to comply with the previous court orders to issue Miguna with a valid passport and purchase a flight ticket for the lawyer from Toronto to Nairobi

https://citizentv.co.ke/news/miguna-files-new-petition-for-return-trip-to-kenya-200817/

https://www.nation.co.ke/news/Miguna-Miguna-in-court-seeking-unconditional-return/1056-4568858-rbeq6i/index.html

https://hivisasa.com/posts/ruto-pushing-for-migunas-return-analyst-claims

https://www.mwakilishi.com/article/kenya-news/2018-05-17/miguna-is-a-kenyan-well-ensure-he-returns-to-kenya-duale

https://www.tuko.co.ke/274269-miguna-files-petition-return-kenya-days-nomination-sonko-deputy.html#274269

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miguna_Miguna

#BringMigunaHome

Egypt: Labor lawyer Haytham Mohamadeen arrested from his house

May 18, 2018

Police forces arrested labor lawyer and member of the Revolutionary Socialistsmovement Haytham Mohamadeen late Thursday night, the latest in a recent string of activist arrests.

According to lawyer Mohamed Abdel Aziz, national security and police personnel stormed Mohamadeen’s house before arresting him.

Mohamadeen, a vocal activist who has been active in labor causes since the early 2000s, was among a group of activists arrested in April 2016 following calls to protest the maritime border agreement through which Egypt ceded sovereignty of the Red Sea islands Tiran and Sanafir to Saudi Arabia. He was imprisoned until October over charges of inciting protests. He was released pending investigations.

On Wednesday, the prosecution renewed the detention of satirist Shady Abou Zeid for 15 days over charges of joining an outlawed group and spreading false news. Abou Zeid, who posts satirical videos on social media, including footage of interviews with citizens on the street, was also arrested from his home.

https://madamirror.appspot.com/www.madamasr.com/en/2018/05/18/news/politics/labor-lawyer-haytham-mohamadeen-arrested-from-his-house/

https://www.madamasr.com/en/2018/05/18/news/politics/labor-lawyer-haytham-mohamadeen-arrested-from-his-house/

Labour laywer Haitham Mohamedein arrested by Egyptian security forces

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2018/05/labour-rights-lawyer-haytham-mohamdeen-arrested-and-held-incommunicado/

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-egypt-rights/egyptian-authorities-arrest-socialist-activist-sources-idUSKCN1IJ1I8

https://socialistworker.co.uk/art/46602/Egyptian+activist+Haitham+Mohamadein+seized+by+security+forces

https://www.yahoo.com/news/egypt-says-prominent-socialist-activist-arrested-121324020.html

https://www.madamasr.com/ar/2018/05/18/news/u/%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AD%D9%85%D9%84%D8%A9-%D8%B6%D8%AF-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%86%D8%B4%D8%B7%D8%A7%D8%A1-%D8%AA%D8%B3%D8%AA%D9%85%D8%B1-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A3%D9%85%D9%86-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%88%D8%B7%D9%86%D9%8A-%D9%8A/ (ARABIC)

https://www.alaraby.co.uk/politics/2018/5/18/%D9%87%D9%8A%D8%AB%D9%85-%D9%85%D8%AD%D9%85%D8%AF%D9%8A%D9%86-%D9%85%D8%AD%D8%A7%D9%85%D9%8A-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B9%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%84-%D9%88%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D8%AF%D8%A7%D9%81%D8%B9-%D8%B9%D9%86-%D9%85%D9%82%D9%87%D9%88%D8%B1%D9%8A-%D9%85%D8%B5%D8%B1 (ARABIC)

http://www.lefigaro.fr/flash-actu/2018/05/18/97001-20180518FILWWW00177-egypte-1-militant-des-droits-de-l-homme-arrete.php (FRANCAIS)

https://www.boursorama.com/bourse/actualites/un-militant-des-droits-de-l-homme-arrete-en-egypte-ebb64e3bca82186ada858f7e7a41bfb3 (FRANCAIS)

#FreeHaytham
#الحرية_لهيثم_محمدين

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Papenburg, Germany (Facebook, 19/05/18)

Egypt: Lawyer Ahmad Abdallah at risk

May 17, 2018

(Mohamed Sameh and Ahmed Abdallah of ECRF with the 2018 Freedom of Expression Award for Campaigning.)

Riceviamo dal nostro consulente Ahmad Abdallah, che noi chiamiamo affettuosamente Abdallah “il buono”, un messaggio inquietante e commuovente.
Noi, Paola, Claudio ed Alessandra,
siamo molto in apprensione per la sorte dei nostri difensori al Cairo, tutti loro stanno pagando un prezzo altissimo in termini di libertà e sicurezza a causa della loro eroica ed irriducibile battaglia legale nel cercare e pretendere al nostro fianco verità per Giulio. Sappiamo che le ambasciate dei paesi della Ue e quella italiana in particolare stanno prodigandosi per “mettere in sicurezza” i nostri consulenti dell’Ecrf, ma, come leggerete nel messaggio di Abdallah, la situazione è molto, molto pericolosa. Abdallah rischia in ogni momento di essere nuovamente catturato e così messo a tacere dalle forze di polizia egiziane. Vi chiediamo, ancora una volta, di stare dalla nostra parte e di diffondere questo testo perché nessuno debba più pagare per aver preteso e per pretendere Verità per Giulio. Noi siamo la loro speranza. Paola Deffendi Claudio Regeni Alessandra Ballerini

“LA STRADA PER LA VERITA’
“Non hai bisogno di vedere l’intera scala. Inizia semplicemente a salire il primo scalino” – Martin Luther King –

Circa due anni e mezzo fa, abbiamo iniziato il percorso per arrivare alla verità su quanto accaduto realmente a Giulio Regeni, due anni pieni di speranza e dolore.

In questi due anni molti fatti sono stati chiariti, mentre molte domande sono rimaste senza risposta.

In questi due anni e mezzo sono stato arrestato una volta, nell’aprile 2016 dallo stesso poliziotto che stava seguendo Giulio, sono rimasto in carcere per quattro mesi e mezzo compreso un periodo di isolamento.

In questi due anni e mezzo l’avvocato Ibrahim Metwally, che ci stava aiutando nella causa di Giulio. è stato arrestato mentre stava cercando suo figlio, fatto sparire a forza.

Metwally è tutt’ora in isolamento, trattenuto all’interno di una cella sporca, senza finestre, dove gli viene negata anche la luce del sole.

Venerdì scorso è iniziato un nuovo capitolo, questa volta hanno iniziato a prendere di mira le nostre famiglie.

Alle 2:30 del mattino gli agenti delle forze di sicurezza dello Stato hanno fatto irruzione nella casa di Mohamed Lotfy, un cittadino egiziano-svizzero, e dopo avergli sequestrato il telefono, lo hanno condotto insieme a sua moglie Amal Fathy ed al figlio di 3 anni, presso una stazione di polizia.

Mohamed e suo figlio sono stati rilasciati ma la moglie Amal è stata accusata in due occasioni di aver compiuto atti di minaccia alla sicurezza dello Stato, ricevendo 2 ordini di detenzione preventiva di 15 giorni ciascuno, perché avrebbe pubblicato un video su Facebook criticando lo Stato, colpevole di non aver sanzionato adeguatamente il reato di molestie sessuali.

Di sicuro le accuse mosse nei confronti di Amal hanno scopo puramente intimidatorio, atteso il lavoro che svolgiamo all’ECRF.

Infatti, il Procuratore per la sicurezza dello Stato ha negato ad Amal qualsiasi incontro con suoi avvocati e, durante l’interrogatorio, le ha chiesto ininterrottamnte informazioni su di me per circa un’ora.

Ciò significa che sto correndo il rischio di essere arrestato a mia volta per attentato alla sicurezza dello stato.

Proprio coloro che dovrebbero investigare e fare luce sulla morte di Giulio, stanno arrestando quelli che davvero cercano di far emergere la verità.

Signore e Signori, Vi sto parlando ora mentre mi nascondo dalle Forze di sicurezza dello Stato, dormo fuori da casa mia perché ho paura che facciano del male alla mia famiglia.

Posso capire perché tutto questo ci sta accadendo: vogliono creare i presupposti affichè emerga la “verità” più conveniente per loro, ma non la reale verità nel caso di Giulio.

Vogliono eliminare tutti i partner egiziani che lavorano per aiutare la Famiglia Regeni in modo che nessuno possa controllare la fondatezza o meno delle informazioni estrapolate dal procedimento giudiziario egiziano.

Signore e Signori, in questo momento siamo presi di mira ed abbiamo bisogno del vostro aiuto affinchè Amal sia rilasciata e possa crescere suo figlio in pace, affinchè Ibrahim sia liberato e possa aiutarci a prevenire ulteriori persecuzioni alla nostra organizzazione.

Signore e Signori vi assicuro che, qualunque cosa faccia l’apparato di sicurezza dello Stato, non smetteremo di impegnarci per trovare la verità per Giulio, la verità vera, non quella più conveniente e sono certo che ci riusciremo.

Questa non è una semplice previsione.

E’ una promessa.

Grazie mille

Ahmad Abdallah,

15 maggio 2018, Cairo – Egitto

(Facebook)

https://newint.org/features/web-exclusive/2018/04/20/ecrf-victory-for-activists-in-egypt

#ahmedabdallah

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The Philippines: Guevarra welcomes prosecutors arming themselves

May 17, 2018

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra has welcomed the idea that state prosecutors arm themselves to better protect themselves from threats.

“I will support prosecutors getting firearm for self-defense,” Guevarra said in a statement.

Recently, former Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) commissioner and now 1-Ang Edukasyon party-list Rep. Salvador Belaro Jr. urged the Department of Justice (DOJ) to provide state prosecutors with bullet-proof vests and other protection devices following the killing of Quezon City Deputy City Prosecutor Rogelio Velasco.

However, Guevarra lamented that the DOJ does not have the budget at the moment to provide state prosecutors with such protective gears.

“I wish we had a budget for body armor,” he disclosed.

“For now we can only wear the breastplate of righteousness and the full armor of God,” Guevarra.

“I wish we could with bullet-proof vehicles to boot but we have to live within our means, and just do our job well,’’ the Secretary said.

Meanwhile, Guevarra has already directed the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to conduct parallel probes over the death of Velasco.

https://news.mb.com.ph/2018/05/17/guevarra-welcomes-prosecutors-arming-themselves/

http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/991942/doj-chief-in-favor-of-arming-prosecutors

http://thestandard.com.ph/news/top-stories/265926/gun-toting-fiscals-get-doj-support.html

http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/991005/lawyers-slain-qc-deputy-prosecutor-was-a-good-man-bahay-trabaho-lang

http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/990684/up-fraternity-condemns-qc-prosecutors-killing

http://politics.com.ph/sinong-salarin-guevarra-orders-nbi-to-probe-killing-of-qc-prosecutor/

http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/multimedia/photo/05/15/18/stop-killing-prosecutors

http://politics.com.ph/everybody-happy-senators-on-last-terms-exiting-richer/

Egypt: Labour lawyer and activist Haytham Mohamadeen arrested

May 17, 2018

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يا هيثم..
في كلام كتير محشور في الزور… بس حتفضل السلطة إللي خايفة منك و بتخطفك.. هي السلطة المعادية لأفكارك.. أفكارك المحبة للناس.. أفكارك إللي بتقف جنب المطحونين و الكادحين و الفقرا.. أفكارك إللي مع فلسطين و مع المقاومة و بتقف ضد الصهاينة و الاستعمار.. أفكارك إللي مع العمال و حقوقهم.. أفكارك إللي ضد التبعية و ضد سياسات الفقار و سياسات صندوق النقد الدولي .. أفكارك إللي مع الحرية و المساواة.
يا رفيق لو بيراهنوا على ميادين فاضية دلوقتي قبلهم راهنوا و خسروا في الاخر..
ربنا يطمنا عليك
#الحرية_لهيثم_محمدين

***

حتي اول ليلة رمضان مش عارفين نتهني بيها. الأمن الوطني قبض علي الصديق و الزميل هيثم محمدين من منزله.
(Facebook)

China: Hong Kong photojournalist’s arrest in Beijing draws protest

May 16, 2018

Mr Chui was violently pinned down by the police as they refused to give out any reasons

A photojournalist of Hong Kong media Now TV News was manhandled and arrested by police while interviewing a civil rights lawyer in Beijing on Wednesday, drawing protest from the Hong Kong Journalists Association.

“We express strong indignation and lodge strong protest against the Beijing authorities,” the association said in a statement. “We demand the Beijing authorities…stop any uncivilized acts and suppression against the reporting work of journalists.”

The Beijing-based cameraman, identified as Chui Chun-ming, was handcuffed and arrested in Beijing while covering a disciplinary hearing on lawyer Xie Yanyi by the Beijing Lawyers Association.

Xie was among the hundreds of lawyers and paralegals who were persecuted in a country-wide crackdown on civil rights lawyers coined as “709 crackdown” that began in 2015.

In a Now TV video-clip, police interrupted a roadside interview of Xie and demanded reporters show their press passes.

https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics/Hong-Kong-photojournalist-s-arrest-in-Beijing-draws-protest

http://www.scmp.com/comment/insight-opinion/article/2146473/right-journalists-gather-news-china-must-be-protected

https://cpj.org/2018/05/chinese-police-detain-hong-kong-journalist.php

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5735299/Journalist-violently-beaten-Chinese-police.html

http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-china-blog-41661862

Egypt: How #MeToo and #TimesUp Are Helping Egyptian Women Break the Silence Around Sexual Violence

May 17, 2018

Azza Soliman is part of Amnesty International’s Brave Campaign, which calls for the recognition and protection of human rights defenders around the world.

Soliman is part of Amnesty International’s Brave Campaign, which calls for the recognition and protection of human rights defenders around the world.

Movements like Me Too and Time’s Up have put women’s rights firmly back on the agenda. But away from the spotlight, there are many other girls and women who are risking their lives to demand an end to sexual violence, harassment and inequality. Just recently, Egyptian activist Amal Fathy was arrested for posting a Facebook video in which she shared her experiences of sexual harassment.

But women in Egypt refuse to be silenced. One of these unsung heroes is lawyer and founder of the Center for Egyptian Women’s Legal Assistance Azza Soliman. Azza risks her own safety and freedom to defend survivors of sexual violence in Egypt.

I’ve been arrested and interrogated for doing my job: defending survivors of abuse in Egypt.

There is no comprehensive law covering all forms of sexual violence in Egypt. Many people believe that the blame lies with the girls and women involved, rather than the perpetrator, and survivors face shame and stigma.

As a lawyer, and as a woman committed to defending human rights, I want to make sure girls and women have a safe space to speak out. It’s an issue I’ve been working on for many years. Believe me when I say, it’s not been an easy fight and, for me, it’s one that’s had difficult repercussions.

I have been defamed by the media. I’ve faced criminal charges. I was accused of damaging the image of Egypt by spreading “false news” of sexual harassment and rape. I had my picture published in a state-affiliated newspaper attacking my marital status and accusing me of “encouraging women to know their rights and seek divorce.”

I’m currently under a travel ban and I’ve had my assets frozen, as I’ve been accused of receiving foreign funds that will harm the image of Egypt and the national interest of my country. Yet I refuse to give up hope, because there’s still plenty of work to be done.

http://time.com/5280726/how-metoo-and-timesup-are-helping-egyptian-women-break-the-silence-around-sexual-violence/

https://www.amnesty.org/en/get-involved/take-action/speak-out-for-egypt-womens-rights-defender-azza-soliman/

https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Azza_Soliman (FRANCAIS)

http://www.abogacia.es/events/event/entrega-del-premio-pedro-de-lemonauria-a-azza-soliman-en-ica-bizkaia/ (ESPANOL)

http://www.lavanguardia.com/local/paisvasco/20180427/443067032418/el-congreso-de-la-abogacia-de-bizkaia-concluye-con-la-entrega-del-premio-pedro-de-lemonauria-a-adela-asua-y-azza-soliman.html (ESPANOL)

Turkey: 13 more Turkish lawyers were convicted of arbitrarily terrorism provisions

May 16, 2018

Samsun 3rd High Assize Court convicted thirteen (13) lawyers of the membership to the armed terrorist organisation and sentenced them to ranging from two to ten and half years.

Thirteen lawyers who are members of the Samsun Bar Association were taken into custody on August 2016 in the wake of the failed coup attempt.

After 21-month trial, the Court sentenced:

  • lawyer Fevzi Cem Şenocak to 10½ years
  • lawyer Yusuf Zotluoğlu to 7½ years
  • lawyers Mustafa Kemal Açıcı, Zekeriya Albayrak, Serdar Kutlu, Neşe Yıldızoğlu, Fatma Şen to 6¼ years
  • lawyers Serdar Şenocak, Kemal Yıldız, Serdar Baskın, Elmas Çatar, Dilek Kütükçü ve Recep Bağ 1,5 years.

The Court also decided to hold lawyer Fevzi Cem Şenocak in remand.

By this latest decision to convict, numbers of Turkish lawyers so far have been convicted of terrorism-related offences since 15th July 2016 raised to 138.

13 more Turkish lawyers were convicted of arbitrarily terrorism provisions

https://stockholmcf.org/turkish-court-sentences-13-lawyers-to-1-to-10-years-in-jail/

https://turkeypurge.com/13-lawyers-sentenced-to-1-to-10-years-in-jail-in-turkeys-samsun

http://www.advocatenvooradvocaten.nl/nl/13314/turkey-l4l-and-ftw-visit-law-firms/