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    September 30, 2019

    Ahmed H, his wife and two daughters had found safety in Cyprus after escaping war-ravaged Syria. But he worried about his elderly parents and six other family members who were still inside Syria’s border. In August 2015, he left his young family at home in Cyprus and traveled to Turkey, intending to help the rest of his family escape from Syria too. They made their way to the Hungarian border only to find themselves stranded along with hundreds of refugees after President Orban closed the crossing from Serbia.

    Tensions rose and clashes broke out. Hungary’s police responded with tear gas and water cannon, injuring dozens. Some threw stones, including Ahmed, but news footage also clearly shows him using a megaphone to call on both sides to remain calm. Of eleven people arrested, he was the only one charged under the counter-terrorism law. 

    February 22, 2018
    Amnesty International publishes State of the World’s Human Rights report for 2017 to 2018 “Last year our world was immersed in crises, with prominent leaders offering us a nightmarish vision of a society blinded by hatred and fear. This emboldened those who promote bigotry, but it inspired far more people to campaign for a more hopeful future,” says Salil Shetty, head of Amnesty International

    The world is reaping the terrifying consequences of hate-filled rhetoric that threatens to normalize massive discrimination against marginalized groups, Amnesty International warned today as it launched its annual assessment of human rights.

    Nevertheless, the organization found that a growing movement of both first-time and seasoned activists campaigning for social justice provides real hope of reversing the slide towards oppression.

    The report, The State of the World’s Human Rights, covers 159 countries and delivers the most comprehensive analysis of the state of human rights in the world today.

    November 27, 2015

    The Cypriot Parliament’s recognition of the right to same-sex civil unions is an important first step towards eradicating discrimination and achieving full marriage equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people in Cyprus, Amnesty International said.

    Yesterday’s vote shows how far Cyprus has come since decriminalizing same-sex sexual relations in 1998. It was preceded by a lengthy public debate over the past two years following political promises to recognize civil partnerships.

    “LGBTI activists in Cyprus have fought for years for this first step in the legal recognition of their intimate relationships. This a positive but long-overdue, and there is still a lot of work ahead before everybody can enjoy full marriage equality under the law,” said Eliza Goroya, Greece and Cyprus Campaigner at Amnesty International.

    “This is an important step forward not only for the LGBTI community, but for every marginalized community,” said Costas Gabrielides from the NGO Accept LGBT Cyprus.

    March 18, 2014

    •        Hundreds detained every year in prison-like conditions
    •        People who have committed no crime are routinely held for up to18 months or longer
    •        Asylum-seekers, including Syrian refugees, are among those detained
    •        Two women were forcibly separated from their pre-school aged children

    Cypriot immigration authorities routinely detain hundreds of migrants and asylum-seekers in prison-like conditions for extended periods while awaiting deportation, said Amnesty International. Those detained include Syrian refugees and women separated from their young children.

    Evidence gathered by researchers during a recent visit to Cyprus indicates that the authorities are exploiting European Union (EU) laws – imposing automatic detention of migrants and asylum-seekers without implementing the required safeguards, which make detention a last resort. The practice is also a breach of international law.

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