Select this search icon to access the amnesty.ca search form

Main menu

Facebook Share

Media advisories

    October 16, 2019

    OTTAWA – With less than a week until the federal election, and without a firm commitment from all federal political party leaders, a coalition of women’s rights and equality-seeking organizations in Canada is calling off plans to hold a leaders’ debate on women’s rights and gender equality.

    The Up for Debate campaign called on all federal party leaders to participate in a national debate focused on women’s rights and gender equality – a topic that has been largely absent from the party platforms and televised debates. Days before voters head to the polls, Up for Debate is calling on all federal party leaders to clearly articulate their commitments to address the rights of women, transgender, non-binary, and two-spirit people in Canada, including how they will tackle poverty, income inequality, violence, and support for women’s rights and equality-seeking organizations.

    What: Press conference with Up for Debate coalition members

    Date: October 17, 2019

    Time: 10 a.m.

    Location: 135-B Press Conference Room in West Block

    August 21, 2019

    Attackers who use phishing scams to target human rights defenders in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are developing increasingly sophisticated techniques to infiltrate their accounts and evade digital security tools, according to new research published by Amnesty Tech. 

    The organization highlighted three key tactics attackers are employing to ensnare people who take extra steps to secure their accounts online. These include asking users to reset the password on their Google accounts; tricking them into authorizing apps which purport to “secure” their Outlook accounts; and abusing legitimate authentication process apps to infiltrate accounts.

    “Human rights defenders across MENA need to be on high alert. Even as they get better at using digital tools to secure their accounts, attackers are developing sophisticated new ways to get past these tools,” said Claudio Guarnieri, Senior Technologist, Amnesty Tech.

    August 19, 2019
    Amnesty International spokespeople at the hearing and available for interview

    Ahead of tomorrow’s appeal against the conviction of Anni Lanz, a 73-year-old woman convicted and fined with 800 Swiss francs ($820 US) for giving a rough-sleeping frost-bitten Afghan asylum seeker a lift over the Italian border into Switzerland, Amnesty International’s Senior Campaigner on Migration, Maria Serrano, said:

    “Anni Lanz has done nothing wrong and committed no crime. By driving across the border to help a young and traumatized man who had been forced to sleep rough in sub-zero temperatures, she showed compassion, not criminality.

    “The conviction against Anni should be overturned and legislation in Switzerland amended so it no longer punishes good Samaritans for acts of solidarity.

    “Dragging her before the court on absurd charges makes a mockery of justice. Efforts by individuals and NGOs to help people seeking safety should be lauded and defended, not criminalised.”

    August 16, 2019

    Spokespeople available to take media interviews

    Ahead of Tanzanian journalist Erick Kabendera’s next appearance in court on 19 August, when he will be required to enter a plea on charges that include leading organized crime and money laundering, Amnesty International’s Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes, Joan Nyanyuki, said:

    “The trial of Erick Kabendera is a travesty as the charges brought against him are politically motivated. The charges must be dropped and Kabendera immediately and unconditionally released. He must not be put through one more day of this judicial charade brought against him solely for doing his job.

    “Kabendera is a well-respected journalist whose investigations have shed light on the workings of Tanzania’s government both at home and abroad. The outrageous fabricated charges against him show the intolerance of the Tanzanian authorities’ to any criticism.”

    Background

    August 16, 2019

    Spokespeople available for comment

    Former Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir must face justice for crimes under international law, including genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes, that he allegedly committed in Darfur while in power, Amnesty International said ahead of the start of his trial on corruption charges on 18 August in Khartoum.

    Al-Bashir, who was deposed from power four months ago following sustained protests against his 30-year rule, will be charged with possessing foreign currency, corruption and receiving gifts illegally. On May 13, Al-Bashir was also charged with incitement and involvement in the killing of protesters.

    “While this trial is a positive step towards accountability for some of his alleged crimes, he remains wanted for heinous crimes committed against the Sudanese people,” said Amnesty International’s Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes, Joan Nyanyuki.

    August 12, 2019

    Amnesty International, PEN Canada and Toronto Association for Democracy in China are pleased to announce the unveiling of the Liu Xiaobo Empty Chair Memorial on:

    Date:               Tuesday, August 13, 2019 at 2 p.m.

    Location:        Amnesty International, 312 Laurier Avenue East, Ottawa

    Speakers:

    Setsuko Thurlow, recipient of the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons;

    Wang Juntao, political activist and friend of Liu during the 1989 pro-democracy movement;

    Ti‑Anna Wang, daughter of Wang Binzhang, political prisoner and founder of Chinese pro-democracy movement overseas;

    Senator Con Di Nino

    Alex Neve, Secretary General, Amnesty International Canada

    Richard Stursberg, Chair, PEN Canada

    Winnie Ng, Chair, Toronto Association for Democracy in China

    July 02, 2019

    Spokespersons available to take media interviews

    Following reports that the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) army has deployed hundreds of soldiers to forcibly remove an estimated 10,000 artisanal miners from the Tenke Fungurume mines in Lualaba Province to the south of the country from 2 July, Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes, Sarah Jackson said:

    “Given the long history of excessive use of force by the Congolese army and its lack of appropriate training in managing public order, the DRC government must immediately withdraw its armed forces from the mines to avert unlawful killings. These artisanal miners are merely trying to eke out a living and sending in the army against them would be completely irresponsible.”

    Background

    June 28, 2019

    Spokespersons available to take media interviews

    Ahead of the nationwide protests planned for 30 June to mark 30 years since former President Omar al-Bashir’s seized power through a military coup, Amnesty International’s Secretary General Kumi Naidoo said:

    “The horrific unprovoked use of lethal and unnecessary force against peaceful protestors as witnessed on 3 June must not be repeated this Sunday, or ever again. The transitional authorities must fully respect and uphold the Sudanese peoples’ rights to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association; and protect their lives.

    “Since the bloody crackdown earlier this month, there has been an alarming regression on human rights. This includes an ongoing internet shutdown, attacks on the media and the refusal to allow opposition groups to organize public forums, as well as the continued dispersal of peaceful protestors using unnecessary and excessive force. This clampdown clearly points to the return of the repressive days associated with al-Bashir.

    June 28, 2019
    50 years after the Stonewall riots, thousands expected to brave tear gas and plastic bullets to defy discriminatory ban Spokespeople will attend the event and are available for interview

    The Istanbul Pride march will take place on Sunday 30 June in spite of a decision by the Governorate of Istanbul to ban the celebrations. 

    "Fifty years ago today, LGBTI+ people took to the streets outside the Stonewall Inn in New York City to fight against bigotry and prejudice - and they won. On Sunday, thousands will take to the streets of Istanbul, defying an unlawful ban and possibly braving plastic bullets, teargas and police batons, to celebrate Pride,” said Sara Hall, Amnesty International’s Deputy Europe Director.

    May 06, 2019

    Amnesty International sent an open letter to the heads of state of Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Paraguay today in response to their recent statement on the Inter-American System for the Protection of Human Rights.

    In the letter, Amnesty International affirmed that the system must be safeguarded and that it deeply regrets that the governments of the aforementioned countries want to make the operation of the inter-American regional mechanism subservient to their own interests, in a way that threatens the rights of victims of human rights violations.

    “From Puerto Rico to Honduras and Venezuela, last week we witnessed with alarm the repressive responses to the demands of citizens who express themselves through protest. All countries in the region have to remember that they have a shared obligation to protect human rights,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director at Amnesty International.

    May 02, 2019

    Spokespeople available for interview

    To commemorate World Press Freedom Day on May 3, Amnesty International will be launching a campaign with Dawn.com, showcasing the consequences on the news if press freedom is curtailed in the country.

    The campaign will be launched at 0900 (Pakistan Standard Time) on 3 May, 2019.

    The Dawn News website will temporarily blur out the homepage when logged onto for the duration of 15 hours to indicate that without press freedom, the truth can often disappear.

    “Over the past year, there has been a noticeable increase in attacks on the right to freedom of expression in Pakistan. We have seen this in the form of regular columnists being refused publication, increased self-censorship and the heightened scrutiny of the editorial policies of many media outlets,” said Rimmel Mohydin, South Asia Campaigner at Amnesty International.

    March 25, 2019

    TORONTO, March 25, 2019 /CNW Telbec/ - This evening a plane carrying Vanessa Rodel and her 7-year-old daughter Keana will land at Toronto's Pearson airport. It is the partial culmination of a saga that began in 2013 when Rodel, her daughter and five other asylum seekers sheltered Edward Snowden, at the time the most wanted man in the world.

    Rodel's application to come to Canada as a privately sponsored refugee was filed in 2016 by non-profit For the Refugees. That application was finally approved by the Canadian government in January, but the decision was kept secret until now for security reasons. The other five refugees, whose applications were submitted at the same time, remain in limbo in Hong Kong as they wait for their approvals. These vulnerable refugees face documented threats of torture and death if returned to their home countries, according to Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other human rights organizations.

    January 25, 2019

    WASHINGTON, DC – Amnesty International and the National Immigrant Justice Center are sending an international delegation of senior leadership to monitor the impact of US policy on asylum seekers and migrants traveling to the US-Mexico border. The delegation will be traveling from January 27 to 31. They will be meeting with Mexican and US authorities, documenting conditions at shelters in Tijuana for families and individuals whom the US had denied access to asylum protections, and meeting with non-governmental organizations directly working with asylum-seekers and migrants in El Paso.

    The delegation includes ; Alex Neve, secretary general of Amnesty International Canada ; Margaret Huang, executive director of Amnesty International USA; Tania Reneaum, executive director of Amnesty International Mexico; Colm O’Gorman, executive director of Amnesty International Ireland; Philippe Hensmans, director of Amnesty International Belgium; and John Peder Egenes, head of Amnesty International Norway. They will be joined by Mary Meg MacCarthy, executive director of the National Immigrant Justice Center.

    January 18, 2019
    Spokesperson available on the ground

    Ahead of tomorrow’s early release of Ahmed H, a Syrian man who was unfairly jailed for “complicity in an act of terror” during clashes with police at the Serbia-Hungary border in September 2015, Eda Seyhan, Amnesty International’s Europe Counter Terrorism Campaigner, said:

    “After spending three-and-a-half years behind bars, Ahmed will finally be reunited with his wife and two young daughters. His release is an overwhelming relief for the family, but the fact is he should never have been prosecuted, let alone convicted, for this offence in the first place.

    “The absurd charges against Ahmed were emblematic of the systematic scapegoating of refugees and migrants, and those seeking to defend them. His prosecution was a potent symbol of Prime Minister Orbán’s ‘illiberal democracy’. It had nothing to do with justice but was instead part of the Hungarian government’s draconian crackdown on human rights.  

    December 18, 2018

    States who have adopted the Global Compact for Migration (GCM) must honour their word and take immediate action to protect the human rights of migrants, Amnesty International said on International Migrants Day.

    The GCM, a global agreement to promote safe, orderly and regular migration, will be formally endorsed at the UN General Assembly tomorrow. Amnesty International made a number of recommendations to the draft text.

    “The Global Compact for Migration is a welcome step towards improving the way the international community responds to migration and, if properly implemented, it will ensure the rights of migrants are respected and protected. The adoption of the GCM shows that it is still possible for countries to cooperate to protect human rights,” said Perseo Quiroz, Senior Advocate for the Americas at Amnesty International.

    Pages

    Subscribe to Media advisories
    rights