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Lifesaver for ages 9 and up -- United Arab Emirates: Ahmed Mansoor must be freed!

    Wednesday, October 9, 2019 - 15:54

    Ahmed Mansoor is one of the bravest champions of human rights in the United Arab Emirates. Amnesty International calls him a prisoner of conscience - a person in jail for peacefully saying what they believe. © Martin Ennals Foundation

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    This man is in prison. But he shouldn’t be there.

    His name is Ahmed Mansoor. Since 2006, he has been very public about his support of human rights in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He used his blog, social media, and interviews with journalists outside of the country to defend human rights. 

    Ahmed Mansoor regularly criticized the government for not always respecting the basic rights of their people. The government didn’t like the criticism. They decided to find him and put him in prison. He knew that could happen because they had already imprisoned over 100 other defenders of human rights. But the threat never silenced him and that’s why he was brave.

    At around midnight on March 20, 2017, security officers burst into his home. For three hours they searched the house. They took away his phone and other devices. They took him away too. For over six months, no one knew where he was held. 

    Ahmed Mansoor’s family has hardly ever seen him in the last 30 months. He has spent many of those months isolated from them and even from other prisoners. His cell lacks a bed and access to running water. 

    Ahmed Mansoor waited a year for his trial to begin. It is only then that he was allowed a lawyer to defend him. The court falsely accused him of offences such as “insulting the UAE and its symbols” and of using Twitter and Facebook to “damage the country’s reputation”. 

    On May 29, 2018 the court sentenced him to 10 years in prison and a fine of $350,000.

    On October 22, Ahmed will mark his 50th birthday in jail. Please tell the UAE government that Ahmed Mansoor should be free.

    WHAT CAN I DO?  
     

    Please send a letter to the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi.

    You could simply write “Your Excellency, Please free Ahmed Mansoor. Sincerely, [your name, city and country]”

    If you would like to write more, you could tell him about someone you think
    is brave and explain why. Then refer to Ahmed Mansoor’s bravery and ask the Crown Prince to remove the offences that are keeping him in prison.

    You could also ask that, until Ahmed Mansoor is free, he is given access to medical care, visits from his family and a lawyer, and protection from harm.

    WHERE DO I SEND MY MESSAGE?

    Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan 
    Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi 
    Crown Prince Court 
    King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Street 
    P.O. Box 124 
    Abu Dhabi
    United Arab Emirates 

    WHAT ELSE CAN I DO?

    Do you know someone who uses Twitter? Ask them to take a photo of your letter to the Crown Prince and tweet it using these tags:  #FreeAhmed #BirthdayWishes4Ahmed @Ahmed_Mansoor

    You may also send Ahmed a birthday card or other greeting even though they will not reach him for a while. Address it to

    Ahmed Mansoor
    c/o Amnesty International
    3 - 1992 Yonge Street
    Toronto ON M4S 1Z7

    We will send the package to our international office on November 15. Staff there will do their best to forward our messages to Ahmed and his family at the first opportunity. 

    If you have not received this Lifesaver directly from Amnesty International’s Toronto office and would like future actions, reach us at urgentaction@amnesty.ca. There is no cost. 

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