Daily Archives: 10/07/2021

Targeting of Algerian lawyers constitutes new escalation in the unrelenting criminalisation of fundamental freedoms

09/07/21

Targeting of Algerian lawyers constitutes new escalation in the unrelenting criminalisation of fundamental freedoms

The undersigned organizations are concerned about the attacks against lawyers from the Collective for the Defence of Hirak Detainees, as part of the Algerian authorities’ accelerated crackdown on the peaceful Hirak movement. The organisations are further alarmed by the recent summary sanctioning of judges, the calling into question of the immunity of lawyers, and the adoption of Ordinance 21-09 which provides for up to five years of prison for individuals who share information about ongoing judicial investigations or prosecutions, including lawyers, thereby directly obstructing human rights work and opening the door for reprisals. The statement is also available in العربية.

The targeting of Algerian lawyers and judges comes against the backdrop of a near-total closure of public space for peaceful protests following mass arrests, increased use of unlawful force and obstruction of protesters. Peaceful protesters, activists, rights defenders and journalists continue to face arbitrary detention and prosecution.

As of 30 June, there are at least 304 prisoners of conscience, a record number, while more than 6,400 peaceful protesters have been arrested since the return of the Hirak pro-democracy protest movement. There is also an alarming  new trend of prosecuting human rights defenders, peaceful protesters and journalists on the basis of unfounded terrorism charges. The role of lawyers in protecting the rule of law and human rights is all the more fundamental given the context of the current crackdown in Algeria.

On 11 May 2021, the Spokesperson for the United Nations (UN) High Commissioner for Human Rights, Rupert Colville, expressed concern about the situation in Algeria “where the rights to freedom of opinion and expression, peaceful assembly and participation in public affairs continue to be under attack”. Among other things, Colville called on the Algerian authorities to “(…) cease all forms of harassment and intimidation” against people participating in the Hirak movement.

We have received information that as part of this crackdown on fundamental freedoms in Algeria, lawyers are increasingly targeted.

[… ]

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2021/06/algeria-scores-detained-in-escalation-of-crackdown-against-activists/

(FRANCAIS)

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/grand-rassemblement-des-avocats-alg%C3%A9riens-contre-la-justice-henni/?originalSubdomain=fr

https://www.amnesty.org/fr/latest/news/2021/06/algeria-scores-detained-in-escalation-of-crackdown-against-activists/

https://www.amnesty.org/es/latest/news/2021/06/algeria-scores-detained-in-escalation-of-crackdown-against-activists/ (ESPANOL)

(ITALIANO)

Human rights lawyers in China say spaces for activism are shrinking as they mark the sixth anniversary of the 709 crackdown

09/07/21

Friday marks the sixth anniversary of the “709 crackdown,” but some of the human rights lawyers that were arrested back then were still serving jail sentences. Additionally, while many of them have been released, the government has revoked their licenses, which makes it hard for some of them to raise their families.

While many human rights lawyers arrested during the “709 crackdown” have been released six years after the mass arrest, Yu Wen-sheng, who was the defense lawyer for several of them in 2015, is still serving his jail sentence at the Nanjing prison.

According to his wife Xu Yan, he has multiple health problems, including trembling and powerlessness in his right arm, which causes him to lose the ability to write, brush his teeth or pick dishes with chopsticks with his right arm. Additionally, he also suffers from high blood pressure, spine issues and kidney stones.

“In fact, his health condition isn’t really good and usually, he would already qualify for compassionate release, but the prison hasn’t approved my application for almost a year,” she said.

Xu said even though she continues to demand the prison to take Yu Wen-sheng to doctors for treatment, authorities at the prison have only taken him to the doctor twice in more than three years.

“He’s only been to the doctors twice in more than three years and the authorities still haven’t allowed him to get dental implant surgeries for the four teeth that he has lost,” she said. “If he fails to get dental implants for too long, it will start affecting his ability to eat food and other teeth nearby might start to get looses too.”

When the Chinese government initiated the “709 crackdown” six years ago, they arrested and detained hundreds of human rights lawyers, activists and their family members across 23 provinces in China. Yu Wen-sheng became the first lawyer to openly sue the government for the mass arrest on July 30.

[…]

https://williamyang-35700.medium.com/human-rights-lawyers-in-china-say-spaces-for-activism-are-shrinking-as-they-mark-the-sixth-637201f1e026

https://www.chrlawyers.hk/zh-hans/node/1690

https://www.nycbar.org/media-listing/media/detail/709-crackdown-on-lawyers-and-human-rights-advocates-sixth-anniversary

https://www.lawsociety.ie/gazette/top-stories/lawyers-in-china-must-endorse-socialism-to-practise-law/

https://thediplomat.com/2021/07/chinas-709-crackdown-is-still-going-on/

http://www.jeromecohen.net/jerrys-blog/2021/7/10/remembering-709-confronting-today-and-tomorrow

https://www.ibanet.org/China-statement-on-the-sixth-anniversary-of-the-709-Crackdown

https://www.dw.com/zh/709%E5%A4%A7%E6%8A%93%E6%8D%95%E5%85%AD%E5%91%A8%E5%B9%B4-%E7%BB%B4%E6%9D%83%E5%BE%8B%E5%B8%88%E7%94%9F%E5%AD%98%E4%B9%8B%E8%B7%AF%E8%A2%AB%E5%A0%B5%E6%AD%BB/a-58212501 (CHINESE)

(FRANCAIS)
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