Tag Archives: Amnesty International

Salah Hamouri: Israel deports Palestinian lawyer to France


Israel’s interior ministry says it has deported a Palestinian-French human rights lawyer after accusing him of security threats.

Salah Hammouri, 37, was escorted onto a flight to France by police early on Sunday morning, the ministry said.

A lifelong resident of Jerusalem, he was stripped of his residency rights after officials accused him of being a member of a terrorist organisation.

Mr Hammouri denies the charges and rights groups have condemned the move.

The French foreign ministry also expressed disappointment at the decision, and said it condemned “the Israeli authorities’ decision, against the law, to expel Salah Hammouri to France”.

But in a statement, the Israeli interior ministry said Mr Hammouri had “organised, inspired and planned to commit terror attacks” against “citizens and well-known Israelis”.

Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked, part of the outgoing Israeli government, hailed the move as a personal success.

“Justice has been done to the terrorist and he has been deported from Israel,” she said in a statement.

“This was a long and protracted process and it is a tremendous achievement that I was able to bring about his deportation just before the end of my duties, using the tools at my disposal to advance the fight against terrorism.”

Mr Hammouri holds French citizenship through his mother. He held residency rights in Jerusalem – a fragile system used by Palestinians in Israeli-annexed East Jerusalem which can be revoked by authorities. He does not hold Israeli citizenship.

He works for Addameer, a Palestinian legal aid and prisoners’ rights group that was designated a terrorist organisation by the Israeli defence ministry in October 2021 along with five other Palestinian civil society groups.

The military said they were linked to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a Palestinian militant group that Israel considers a terrorist organisation.





https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2022/12/18/israel-a-expulse-vers-la-france-l-avocat-franco-palestinien-salah-hamouri_6154913_3210.html (FRANCAIS)



Anti-corruption prosecutor in Guatemala given 4-year jail term


A Guatemalan court on Friday handed down a four-year jail term to a senior anti-corruption prosecutor in what critics assailed as a blatant effort to undermine a fight against corruption.

The sentence against Virginia Laparra, who has been imprisoned for 10 months already, was announced by Judge Oly Gonzalez after an unusually speedy 18-day trial that was largely confined to testimony from police, government functionaries and a judge once investigated for corruption.

Gonzalez said Laparra was convicted for “abuse of authority” and given a commutable term of four years, which, under Guatemalan law, means she could pay a fine and see her term reduced.

Laparra wept as she heard the sentence.

“This is a legal aberration and a terrible precedent,” she said.

Amnesty International lambasted the conviction as a travesty.

“This conviction is yet another example of the criminalization of justice workers in Guatemala,” said Erika Guevara Rosas, Americas director for Amnesty International. “Virginia Laparra is a prisoner of conscience who is paying a high price for conducting her work as an anti-corruption prosecutor.

‘Vengeance’ campaign

At the end of her hearing, Laparra was ushered away in handcuffs, escorted by two guards. Some 50 supporters shouted, “Virginia is innocent!” and “Down with the corrupt!”

In brief remarks to journalists, Laparra said “no prosecutor evermore will dare present a case.”

US State Department assistant secretary for the western hemisphere Brian Nichols this week tweeted that the US government is “deeply concerned” about Laparra’s prosecution. In a separate tweet, the department said Guatemala’s campaign against Laparra “for doing her job undermines the fight against corruption and impunity.”

A day earlier, Laparra asserted as the trial wrapped up that the charges against her were part of a “vengeance” campaign by right-wing forces intent on protecting corruption rackets and military officers blamed for crimes during the 1960-1996 civil war.

Laparra was the chief of the Quetzaltenango region of the Special Prosecutor’s Office against Impunity when she was arrested as part of apparent payback for her anti-corruption efforts.



https://www.dw.com/es/guatemala-condena-a-virginia-laparra-por-abuso-de-autoridad/a-64130976 (ESPANOL)


https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2022/12/17/une-ex-procureure-anticorruption-condamnee-a-quatre-ans-de-prison-au-guatemala_6154891_3210.html (FRANCAIS)


Protest-hit Iran arrests lawyer of jailed journalists


Iran has arrested the lawyer of two female journalists jailed after covering the death in custody of a young woman that sparked three months of protests, a newspaper said Saturday.

The Islamic Republic has been rocked by protests since Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian of Kurdish origin, died on September 16 after her arrest for an alleged breach of the country’s dress code for women.

“Mohammad Ali Kamfirouzi, the lawyer for several activists and journalists, has been detained,” the Ham Mihan newspaper said.

The arrest brings to 25 the number of lawyers detained in connection to the protests, according to the newspaper.

Kamfirouzi’s lawyer Mohammad Ali Bagherpour was cited as saying his client had not received a summons, was unaware of the charges he faced and that he had been detained without any legal formalities.

Ham Mihan quoted Kamfirouzi’s brother as saying that his arrest had occurred on Wednesday, as well as that the judiciary was “responsible for protecting my brother’s life and health.”

Among Kamfirouzi’s clients were Niloufar Hamedi and Elaheh Mohammadi, the two female journalists arrested after covering Amini’s death and its aftermath.

Hamedi, who works at Shargh newspaper, was detained on September 20 after visiting the hospital where Amini had spent three days in a coma before her death.





https://information.tv5monde.com/info/iran-l-avocat-des-journalistes-ayant-couvert-la-mort-de-mahsa-amini-ete-arrete-482254 (FRANCAIS)


https://arabic.euronews.com/2022/12/17/lawyer-of-two-iranian-female-journalists-arrested-for-covering-amini-death (ARABIC)


Peine de mort en Iran : le barreau de Paris se mobilise


Samedi 17 décembre, le barreau de Paris participera au rassemblement organisé par « Ensemble contre la peine de mort », aux côtés de tous les avocats parisiens en robe, en faveur de l’arrêt des exécutions en Iran, Place de la Bastille, à 15h.

Le Barreau de Paris, l’Union Internationale des avocats, la Fédération Nationale des Unions de Jeunes Avocats, Ace-Avocats, ensemble, le Syndicat des Avocats de France et Femmes et Droit se joignent au rassemblement organisé par « Ensemble contre la peine de mort » et les collectifs « Iran Justice », « Femme Azadi », « Avocats ZZA », « Azadi4iran », «Actions for Iran», «Neda d’Iran», « Soutien à la lutte du peuple iranien », avec le soutien logistique de l’association Homa, le samedi 17 décembre à 15h, Place de la Bastille. Ils manifesteront en robe, afin de demander l’arrêt immédiat des exécutions perpétrées par le régime iranien.

En l’espèce, depuis le 8 décembre, par deux fois, des manifestants ont été exécutés en Iran à la suite de procès expéditifs et inéquitables.

Le barreau de Paris craint que le rythme des exécutions s’accélère et a appelé à se mobiliser pour que la peine de mort ne soit pas utilisée comme une arme de répression à l’encontre de celles et ceux qui demandent la fin des lois et politiques discriminatoires en Iran au travers d’une résolution. Cette résolution portée par le barreau de Paris et le Conseil National des barreaux a d’ores et déjà été signée par 17 barreaux. Le barreau de Paris insiste sur la nécessité d’une action forte et coordonnée de la société civile, des gouvernements et des organisations internationales afin de dissuader la République islamique d’exécuter des manifestants.




https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/dec/16/european-mps-seek-to-publicise-plight-of-jailed-iranian-protesters (ENGLISH)

Click to access EN_HRL_20221213_Iran_Threats-against-Mahsa-Amini-s-family-lawyers-and-continuing-arrest-of-lawyers.pdf







China: Hong Kong activist who staged Tiananmen vigil has conviction overturned


Hong Kong’s top court has overturned the conviction of an activist who tried to stage a Tiananmen Square vigil last year, finding police acted unlawfully.

Lawyer Chow Hang-tung – who was jailed in January – will remain in custody as she faces two other charges under the city’s national security law.

But she won her appeal against her “unauthorised assembly” conviction on Wednesday,

A judge ruled the police hadn’t properly justified the vigil’s ban.

Hong Kong authorities have cited Covid restrictions as the reason for its ban on Tiananmen vigils since 2020.

The city used to be one of the only sites on Chinese territory where authorities allowed tributes.

Ms Chow was arrested in June 2021 for “inciting” the public to take part in that year’s vigil. She had led the Hong Kong Alliance, a group which had organised the annual demonstrations and that year she posted articles on social media and on news sites urging Hong Kongers to turn out or light a candle in tribute.

At her trial in January this year, she was jailed for encouraging the assembly in breach of Covid laws.

Magistrate Amy Chan said she had been “self righteous” in “completely disregarding the law to think that the freedom of assembly was more important than public health”.

However a High Court judge on Wednesday found police had not properly explored the options for how the demonstration could have gone ahead in a Covid-safe manner.








https://www.dw.com/zh/%E9%82%B9%E5%B9%B8%E5%BD%A4%E8%B5%A2%E5%BE%97%E4%B8%8A%E8%AF%89-%E8%8E%B7%E5%88%A4%E6%92%A4%E9%94%80%E5%AE%9A%E7%BD%AA%E5%8F%8A%E5%88%A4%E5%88%91/a-64094262 (CHINESE)


https://www.france24.com/fr/asie-pacifique/20221214-hong-kong-interdire-une-veill%C3%A9e-pour-tiananmen-est-ill%C3%A9gal-juge-un-tribunal (FRANCAIS)


https://www.amnesty.fr/liberte-d-expression/petitions/10jps2022-chow-hang-tung-hong-kong (SIGNEZ S.V.P.!)

https://www.rfi.fr/es/m%C3%A1s-noticias/20221214-tribunal-de-hong-kong-declara-ilegal-veda-a-vigilia-por-matanza-de-tiananmen (ESPANOL)

https://br.noticias.yahoo.com/tribunal-hk-determina-que-proibi%C3%A7%C3%A3o-122937586.html (PORTUGUES)

Burundi: Quashing of Tony Germain Nkina’s sentence by the Supreme Court


On 8 December 2022, the Burundian Supreme Court quashed the five year conviction of the human rights defender and lawyer Tony Germain Nkina, which was previously confirmed on 29 September 2021 by the Ngozi Appeal Court. The human rights defender has been detained at the Ngozi central prison since 13 October 2020. The new appeal trial must take place without delay, as per the Supreme Court’s recommendation.

Tony Germain Nkina is a well known human rights lawyer in Kayanza province, who provides legal assistance to detained persons and victims of human rights abuses. He is the former representative of the Association for the Protection of Human Rights and Detained Persons (Association pour la protection des droits humains et des personnes détenues – APRODH), a leading human rights group in Burundi until 2015. APRODH worked to protect human rights in general, and the rights of detained persons in particular, and provided legal and psychological assistance to detained persons and victims of abuse as well as worked to raise public awareness on the prevention of all forms of abuse of humans and persons in pre-trial detention. In 2015, the government suspended the organization as part of a crackdown on independent civil society.

On 13 October 2020, Tony Germain Nkina was arrested without a warrant in Kabarore, where he was visiting a client for his professional work as a lawyer. In June 2021, a court in Kayanza found Tony Germain Nkina guilty of collaboration with armed groups – a common accusation against perceived opponents and critics of the government in Burundi – and sentenced him to five years in prison. On 16 July 2021, the human rights defender’s lawyer filed an appeal at the Court of Appeal of Ngozi. His lawyer reported that Tony Germain Nkina was questioned regarding APRODH. The human rights defender was found guilty of complicity with armed groups and sentenced to five years’ imprisonment and a fine of one million Burundian francs (approximately 460 Euro).




https://www.frontlinedefenders.org/fr/case/quashing-tony-germain-nkinas-sentence-by-supreme-court (FRANCAIS)



Mexico: Concern about harassment, surveillance and likely attempted murder of lawyer and defender of the Peoples’ Front in Defense of Land and Water – Morelos, Puebla, Tlaxcala, Juan Carlos Flores Solís


Joint Declaration by: Peace Brigades International – PBI Mexico; World Organization Against Torture (OMCT) and International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), in the framework of the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders; Protection International Mesoamerica; Taula per Mèxic (Barcelona); Front line Defenders; Swedish Movement for Reconciliation – SweFOR; Amnesty International

Concern about the harassment, surveillance and likely attempted murder of the lawyer and defender of the Peoples’ Front in Defense of Land and Water – Morelos, Puebla, Tlaxcala (FPDTA – MPT), Juan Carlos Flores Solís.

November 28, 2022

  • The Mexican State has the duty to guarantee the right to defend human and collective rights, and the integrity and life of human rights defenders of the FPDTA-MPT.
  • Human rights organizations are concerned about the harassment, surveillance and likely attempted murder of the lawyer and human rights defender Juan Carlos Flores Solís.

The undersigned organizations hereby recognize the indispensable work of the lawyer and human rights defender of the FPDTA-MPT, Juan Carlos Flores Solís, for his human rights work and defense of the right to access to water, a healthy environment and the self-determination of peoples.

The work of Juan Carlos Flores Solís, as a member and lawyer of the FPDTA-MPT, has focused on legal and social accompaniment of different indigenous Nahua communities fighting against mega-projects and against the extraction and contamination of water, both in the Cuautla River, in the municipality of Ayala, Morelos, and in the Metlapanapa River, in the municipality of Juan C. Bonilla, Puebla.

We would like to collectively express our concern for the recent events of intimidation, harassment, surveillance and the likely attempted homicide against Juan Carlos Flores Solís, which is directly linked to his legitimate legal and human rights work. We have received information from Juan Carlos Flores Solís about the attacks against his physical integrity, threats of physical harm, repeated raids, and acts of surveillance, intimidation and harassment that he has been subjected to throughout this year. These attacks seek to undermine and hinder the exercise of his right to defend human rights, as his legal and social accompaniment work is translated into denouncing the serious environmental impacts related to the industrial activity of both Mexican and transnational companies operating in the centre of the country.



https://www.frontlinedefenders.org/es/statement-report/joint-statement-mexico-concern-about-harassment-surveillance-juan-carlos-flores-solis (ESPANOL)





As the World celebrates the beginning of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar this weekend, we call for the release of imprisoned Qatari lawyers


FIFA awarded the 2022 World Cup to Qatar in 2010 regardless of the poor human rights conditions in the country. Besides migrant workers, women, people from the LGBTI+ community and journalists, lawyers are also subject of human rights violations in the country. As the international community gets ready to celebrate the world’s biggest sporting event in Qatar, Qatari lawyers Hazza bin Ali Abu Shurayda al-Marri and Rashed bin Ali Abu Shurayda al-Marri remain in prison, serving a life-sentence since 10 May 2022.

In 2021, lawyer Hazza bin Ali Abu Shurayda al-Marri took part in the widescale peaceful protests against a controversial election law, which excluded among others, al-Murra tribe members from the Shura Council, Qatar’s legislative body.  As a result of taking part in the protests and his prominent role in sharing his opinions on the state of affairs in Qatar on his Twitter account, Mr. al-Marri was arrested in August 2021 at his home by the Criminal Investigation Department.

Subsequently, Hazza bin Ali Abu Shurayda al-Marri’s brother, Rashed bin Ali Abu Shurayda al-Marri visited the Public Prosecution offices to enquire about the reasons for this arrest and to request access to act as his brother’s legal representative. He too was detained immediately.

Not only the right to freedom of expression as stipulated in article 23 of the UN Basic Principles on the Role of Lawyers has been repeatedly violated, also the right to fair trial has not been upheld in Qatar. Both lawyers stood trial for the first time on 26 January 2022, in which a number of minimum fair trial guarantees and legal procedures were violated: the judge appointed a defence lawyer for the defendants, leaving them without the opportunity to appoint a lawyer of their own choosing, and their first two hearings took place behind closed doors.

On 10 May 2022, the Second Circuit Criminal issued a life sentence against both lawyers. 


https://www.amnesty.org.uk/urgent-actions/two-qatari-lawyers-arbitrarily-detained (TAKE ACTION!)







https://latribune.avocats.be/fr/hazza-et-rashed-bin-ali-abu-shurayda-al-marri (FRANCAIS)


https://www.amnistia.org/ve/noticias/2022/10/22134/golfo-persico-los-estados-del-gcc-siguen-siendo-tan-represivos-como-siempre (ESPANOL)



https://www.agoravox.it/I-regni-del-silenzio-come-gli.html (ITALIANO)

https://www.advocatenblad.nl/2022/07/06/qatar-levenslang-voor-kritische-tweets/ (NEDERLANDS)

https://www.amnestypress.se/fattapennan/2022/2/livstid-advokater/ (SVENSKA/ENGLISH)

Fiji: IBAHRI calls for contempt charge against lawyer Ricard Naidu to be dropped


In a letter to #Fiji‘s Chief Justice & Attorney-General, the IBAHRI called for contempt charges against #lawyer Richard Naidu to be dropped and for Fiji’s authorities to uphold their obligations under international human rights law, including to respect, protect, and fulfil the rights to freedom of expression and to a fair trial.




USA: “I’m safe now.” Afghan lawyer, who defended women, reunited with family in Texas


As a human rights lawyer, Latifa Sharifi helped countless women and children in Afghanistan. But when the U.S. military withdrew from the country, she was no longer safe.

She and her three children spent more than a year hiding, first in Afghanistan and then in a safe house in Europe. Behind the scenes, lawyers, human rights advocates and others spent months helping to keep her safe and get her to the U.S. — they succeeded.

On Tuesday, Sharifi and her three sons walked out of the international terminal at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. Smiling and crying, she hugged her sister and her sister’s family, who were waiting for her. The family was able to enter the U.S. after securing humanitarian parole visas.

“I feel I’m safe now and I’m free now, and I want this freedom and this safety for all of the Afghan woman, that they also be like me, safe in our country,” Sharifi told reporters inside the terminal.

The 45-year-old said one of the first things she looked forward to doing was eat dinner with her sister and brother-in-law and their children.

Sharifi and her children tried leaving Afghanistan in August of last year when U.S. troops began pulling out of the country. But she was turned away at the airport, and her youngest son was nearly trampled as people rushed to try get on a plane.

Younger sister, Atefa, who’s 37, cried as she described overwhelming feelings of relief and joy.

“I think my tears explain everything,” 37-year-old Atefa Sharifi said. “It means [the] world to me that she’s here. I’m feeling so happy and so blessed that I’m thinking I cannot ask God anything more.”

Atefa Sharifi said her older sister has been through a lot. When the Taliban took control of Kabul, they began releasing prisoners. Sharifi feared for her life — she had helped many women in abusive marriages file for divorce and now some of the men in those relationships were free.