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    October 08, 2019
    National coalition urges leaders to address women’s rights, gender equality

    With gender issues largely absent from last night’s federal leaders’ debate, a new video ad is urging all candidates to finally speak up on women’s rights and gender equality.

    Up for Debate, a national alliance of women’s rights and gender equality advocates, posted the short ad online Monday night, just as the six federal party leaders took to the stage for the English debate.

    The alliance has also invited the Liberal, Conservative, New Democratic, Bloc and Green parties to participate in a separate televised debate on women’s rights and gender equality. NDP leader Jagmeet Singh and Green Party leader Elizabeth May have committed to participate. Up for Debate has not yet received a firm commitment from the Bloc Quebecois, the Conservatives or the Liberals.

    “It’s been 35 years since federal party leaders debated women’s rights and gender equality,” states the ad, referring to the 1984 federal leaders’ debate on women’s issues.

    October 07, 2019

    Justin Trudeau

    Leader

    Liberal Party of Canada

     

    Andrew Scheer

    Leader

    Conservative Party of Canada

     

    Jagmeet Singh

    Leader

    New Democratic Party

     

    Yves-François Blanchet

    Leader

    Bloc Québécois

     

    Elizabeth May

    Leader

    Green Party of Canada

     

    Maxime Bernier

    Leader

    People’s Party of Canada

     

    September 30, 2019

    Dear Mr. Trudeau, Mr. Scheer, Mr. Singh, M. Blanchet, Ms. May and Mr. Bernier,

    RE: Seeking commitment to establish public inquiry into case of Hassan Diab

    We are writing to seek your party’s public commitment to support the establishment of a public inquiry into the case of Dr. Hassan Diab. 

    October 04, 2019
    Spokespeople available for interview

    A witness hearing examining Shell’s role in the execution of nine men in Nigeria in the 1990s is a key opportunity to hold the oil giant to account over its alleged complicity in human rights abuses, Amnesty International said.

    The Kiobel v Shell case resumes at The Hague on 8 October and will for the first time hear accounts from individuals who accuse Shell of offering them bribes to give fake testimonies that led to the ‘Ogoni Nine’ – who included Esther Kiobel’s husband – being sentenced to death and executed.   

    October 04, 2019

    The Hong Kong government announced in a press conference today that it will invoke a colonial-era law, the Emergency Regulations Ordinance, in order to ban face coverings at public gatherings. The law also grants the Hong Kong government sweeping powers relating to detention and to restriction of freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.  

    Joshua Rosenzweig, Head of Amnesty International’s East Asia Regional Office, said: 

    “This is yet another attempt by the Hong Kong government to deter protesters, who have so far been undaunted by unnecessary and excessive use of force and the threat of prosecution, from exercising their rights.

    “It is thanks to the climate of fear Hong Kong authorities have created that protesters feel the need to wear masks in the first place. This ban is especially worrying in a context where protesters fear arbitrary arrest, surveillance and the indiscriminate use of tear gas and other projectiles.  

    October 03, 2019

    In response to the operation by the Civil Police and the Rio de Janeiro Public Prosecutor’s Office that resulted in the arrest of four people and a warrant being issued against former Military Police Ronnie Lessa, who is already in prison accused of carrying out the killing of human rights defender Marielle Franco and her driver Anderson Silva, Jurema Werneck, executive director of Amnesty International Brazil, said:

    “We are struck by the existence of a network of people involved in the killing of a human rights defender such as Marielle Franco, who worked for the common good, to benefit the citizens of Rio de Janeiro. We continue to follow the development of the investigations and remain deeply concerned about the delay in identifying who ordered the crime. We hope that everyone involved in the killing will be identified and brought to justice.”

    October 01, 2019

    Authorities in Cyprus have finally allowed Ahmed H, a Syrian man unjustly convicted in Hungary in a blatant misuse of terrorism-related charges, to return to his family today. Responding to the news that Ahmed - who had been jailed in Hungary in 2015, would return home, Giorgos Kosmopoulos, Director of Amnesty International Greece, said: 

    “After four long years of separation Ahmed has finally been reunited with his family, just in time for his elder daughter’s tenth birthday. His return home to Cyprus is an overwhelming relief for the family, but he should never have been prosecuted, let alone convicted on those trumped up charges in the first place.” 

    “Ahmed’s wish to bring his Syrian family to safety was what led him to be in Hungary in 2015. It is a scandal that the Hungarian government kept him away from his wife and children for so long, but after Cyprus did the right thing, today we celebrate that they are now reunited.” 

    October 01, 2019

    In response to the shooting of a protester by police in Hong Kong during demonstrations marking China’s National Day, leaving him in a critical condition in hospital, the Director of Amnesty International Hong Kong Man-Kei Tam said:

    “The shooting of a protester marks an alarming development in the Hong Kong police’s response to protests. The Hong Kong authorities must launch a prompt and effective investigation into the sequence of events that left a teenager fighting for his life in hospital. Police should only use lethal force in response to an imminent threat of death or serious injury and only as a last resort. 

    “We are urging the Hong Kong authorities to urgently review their approach in policing the protests in order to de-escalate the situation and prevent more lives being put at risk.” 

    Amnesty International analyzed videos of the shooting and pinpointed the location as Hau Tei Square in Hong Kong’s Tsuen Wan area. In a short video statement the Hong Kong Police Force defended the shooting by stating that the officer felt his life was under threat: 

    September 30, 2019

    Spokespeople available for interviews

    One year since the extrajudicial execution of Jamal Khashoggi, Saudi citizens are honouring Khashoggi’s legacy by pursuing the fight for their inalienable right to freely express themselves, despite the authorities’ continuing crackdown and the absence of any meaningful signal to hold accountable those responsible for Jamal Khashoggi’s killing, Amnesty International said today.

    “Any talk of assuming responsibility for Jamal Khashoggi’s killing is meaningless if not met with the immediate and unconditional release of dozens of individuals who continue to languish in prison, and who continue to be at risk of torture and other ill-treatment, solely for having expressed their opinion in a peaceful manner,” said Lynn Maalouf, Middle East Research Director at Amnesty International.

    September 23, 2019

    The measures taken by the government of President López Obrador to uncover the truth and ensure justice in the case of the 43 Ayotzinapa students who were forcibly disappeared five years ago must soon translate into positive results, Amnesty International said today. Such measures also need to be replicated in the cases of the thousands of other disappearances in the country.

    “During the first four years of struggle, Amnesty International continually denounced the cover-up by the authorities in the Ayotzinapa case. Today we have seen initial efforts by the new government to resolve the case and we welcome this, although much remains to be done,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director at Amnesty International.

    September 23, 2019

    The proposed Extradition Bill was the latest manifestation of a steady erosion of human rights in Hong Kong, Amnesty International said today, as it released a report detailing how the creeping influence of Beijing’s policies and rhetoric on “national security” has resulted in growing numbers of local activists and journalists being censored, prosecuted and harassed in recent years. 

    In the report, Beijing’s Red Line in Hong Kong, the organization highlights how increasing restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly culminated in this summer’s protests.  

    “The steady erosion of rights and freedoms in Hong Kong began long before the announcement of the Extradition Bill. The Chinese authorities, in tandem with the Hong Kong leadership, have for years been chipping away at the special status that Hong Kong is supposed to enjoy regarding the protection of human rights,” said Joshua Rosenzweig, Head of Amnesty International’s East Asia Regional Office. 

    September 20, 2019

    A new Amnesty International field investigation has documented an alarming pattern of the Hong Kong Police Force deploying reckless and indiscriminate tactics, including while arresting people at protests, as well as exclusive evidence of torture and other ill-treatment in detention.

    After interviewing nearly two dozen arrested persons and gathering corroborating evidence and testimonies from lawyers, health workers and others, the organization is demanding a prompt and independent investigation into the violations, which appear to have escalated in severity since the mass protests began in June. 

    “The Hong Kong police’s heavy-handed crowd-control response on the streets has been livestreamed for the world to see. Much less visible is the plethora of police abuses against protesters that take place out of sight,” said Nicholas Bequelin, East Asia Director at Amnesty International.

    September 20, 2019

    Canada’s relationship with the Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) Nation of Kanehsatà:ke should be an emblem of reconciliation.

    The 1990 confrontation triggered by planned expansion of a golf course on a sacred site within the Nation’s ancestral territory was a watershed moment in Canadian history, focusing long overdue attention on the profound injustice at the heart of Canada’s persistent failure to recognize and uphold Indigenous land rights.

    Yet almost three decades later, dispute ongoing negotiations between the federal government and the colonial created, band council Chief and Council, the underlying land question remains unresolved. This has resulted in ongoing tension, frustration and anxiety over the fact that municipal officials and private developers continue to hold the power to decide the future of lands crucial to the history and future of Kanehsatà:ke.

    On the 29th anniversary of the confrontation, the traditional government – Rotinonhseshá:ka ne Kanehsatà:ke (People of the Longhouse) -- issued a public call for a halt to development on the ancestral land, unless free, prior and informed consent is given.

    September 18, 2019

    NEW YORK, 18 September 2019 – In an unprecedented move, more than 200 representatives of Indigenous Peoples, workers, academia, environmental and human rights groups adopted a landmark declaration calling on governments and corporations to urgently tackle the climate emergency in order to ensure the survival of humanity. 

    Gathered for the Peoples’ Summit on Climate, Rights and Human Survival, their goal is to unleash new power, energy, and resources to supercharge a connected, diverse, and action-oriented mass movement to overcome the climate crisis, by putting people and human rights at the core of  its solutions.

    September 18, 2019

    Antonio Guterres should publicly and unequivocally condemn the Chinese authorities’ abusive policies in Xinjiang and call for an immediate closure of camps containing an estimated one million Turkic Muslims, a coalition of five human rights groups, including Amnesty International, said in a letter to the UN Secretary-General.

    “In the words of Mr Guterres himself, human rights are universal regardless of race, beliefs or location. We are asking him to apply that principle to the one million Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslims who continue to be arbitrarily detained by the Chinese authorities in so-called ‘political education camps’ in Xinjiang,” said Kumi Naidoo, Amnesty International’s Secretary General.

    “Mr Guterres’ private diplomacy on this issue is clearly not working. He must immediately speak out publicly against the persecution of Muslims in Xinjiang or he will forever be remembered for failing hundreds of thousands of people in this crucial moment.”

    September 18, 2019

    This summer, university and high school students in Hong Kong took to the streets in huge numbers. Braving arrest, tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets, they have marched day after day to claim their rights.

    On 4 September, Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam announced her government’s formal withdrawal of the Extradition Bill that had sparked the protests. But this was only one of the “five demands” that have propelled the movement.

    Protesters also want the government to retract its characterization of protests as “riots”; an independent investigation into use of force by police; and the unconditional release of everyone arrested in the context of protests. They also want political reform to ensure genuine universal suffrage - the ability to choose Hong Kong’s leaders themselves - as set under the city’s mini-Constitution, the Basic Law.

    Here three students tell Amnesty International why they’re not backing down now.

    Joey

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