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Tanzania: 13 health and human rights activists released!

    November 03, 2017

    Photo Credit: Via Amnesty International

    Thirteen health and human rights activists, including two South Africans and one Ugandan, have been released after the court found that there was insufficient evidence against them. The 13 were arrested during a consultative meeting to discuss the Tanzanian government’s decision to limit the provision of certain health services that it had previously provided.

    The activists were released without charge on 27 October. This was after a court found that there was insufficient evidence in the case the prosecutor was seeking to bring against them.

    Among those detained was a South African human rights lawyer and Initiative for Strategic Litigation in Africa’s (ISLA) executive director, Sibongile Ndashe, and one Ugandan who were deported by police and immigration officials immediately after their release. They were told to appeal their deportation in their countries if they so wished.

    The 13 were arrested on 17 October when Tanzanian police raided a legal consultation meeting convened by ISLA and Community Health Services and Advocacy (CHESA). They were detained and accused of ‘promoting homosexuality’ even though there was no discussion of same-sex relations at the meeting. The meeting was organized to deliberate on a case the two organizations had planned to file before a court to challenge the Tanzanian government’s decision to limit the provision of certain health services that it had previously provided.

    Hundreds of Amnesty supporters from the Urgent Action Network mobilised to call for thier release.

    Thank you to all those who sent appeals!

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