Canada celebrates world’s largest human rights event with first in-person Write-A-Thons in three years & More Trending News


Amnesty International Canada

Amnesty International Canada

OTTAWA, Dec. 02, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — For the first time since 2019, Amnesty International supporters throughout Canada will collect in particular person round International Human Rights Day – December 10 – to participate in the world’s largest annual celebration of human rights.

Now in its twenty second yr, Amnesty International’s Write for Rights marketing campaign sees 1000’s of teams in greater than 200 nations and territories take tens of millions of actions in assist of individuals whose human rights are beneath assault. In years previous, dozens of Write-A-Thons – vigorous occasions the place activists collect to jot down letters, signal petitions, get pleasure from music and refreshments, and hearken to inspiring visitor audio system – came about in communities throughout Canada. However, in 2020 and 2021, these gatherings had been cancelled or migrated on-line due to COVID-19 restrictions.

“Defending human rights, at its core, is about people joining together and harnessing their collective power to counter injustice,” stated Ketty Nivyabandi, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada (English-speaking Section). “Gathering online can be an effective tool to spur change, but it’s not the same experience as the intimacy and immediacy of getting together in person, sharing stories, and taking action as a group. That’s where empathy thrives and momentum grows unstoppable.”

So far, greater than 60 Write-A-Thons have been scheduled for December, with occasions confirmed for Halifax, Toronto, Regina, Saskatoon, Edmonton, and Vancouver. Community, scholar, spiritual, and office teams could register their occasions on Amnesty International Canada’s 2022 Write for Rights portal. There, guests may even discover letter-writing toolkits, on-line actions, and details about the instances Amnesty International is profiling this yr.

This yr’s featured human rights defenders, lining up with Amnesty International’s new world Protect the Protest marketing campaign, are 13 people who’ve been focused for his or her protest actions. They are:

  • Chow Hang-tung, a lawyer from Hong Kong who’s serving 22 months in jail for asking folks on social media to mild candles to commemorate the Tiananmen crackdown.

  • Vahid Afkari, who was sentenced to a long time in jail and 74 lashes for becoming a member of protests towards inequality and political repression in Iran, and whose relations have been repeatedly focused for looking for reality and justice, together with the key execution of Vahid’s brother Navid and the arbitrary detention this fall of Vahid’s sister Elham.

  • Zimbabwean activists Joanah Mamombe, Netsai Marova, and Cecillia Chimbiri, who had been kidnapped, overwhelmed, sexually assaulted, and jailed for protesting, then charged with faking their ordeal.

  • Shahnewaz Chowdhury, who faces jail in Bangladesh for elevating issues on Facebook concerning the potential damaging environmental impacts of a brand new energy plant.

  • Dorgelesse Nguessan, a hairdresser from Cameroon, sentenced to 5 years in jail after she attended her first ever peaceable protest.

  • Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara, who was sentenced to 5 years in jail in a maximum-security jail in Cuba after posting a video in which he stated he would attend one of many largest demonstrations Cuba had seen in a long time.

  • Zineb Redouane, an 80-year-old lady who was killed by the reckless use of a tear gasoline grenade in France. Police officers had been utilizing tear gasoline to disperse protesters in the streets beneath her house when a police officer fired a tear gasoline grenade in Zineb’s course. It hit her in the face and she or he died from her accidents. Nearly 4 years later, and nobody has been charged or suspended over her loss of life.

  • Nasser Zefzafi, who’s serving 20 years in jail in Morocco for his involvement in a peaceable protest motion demanding enchancment to well being care, training, and employment alternatives in his area.

  • Yren Rotela and Mariana Sepúlveda, two trans girls from Paraguay who’ve been barred by the authorities from legally altering their names.

  • Aleksandra Skochilenko from Russia, who faces as much as 10 years in jail for opposing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“Over the last 12 months alone, from Iran to Cuba and beyond, we’ve seen a host of protest movements met with repressive government responses,” stated Agnès Callamard, Amnesty International’s Secretary General. “Everywhere you look across the world, the right to protest is coming under attack.”

Every December, folks all over the world write tens of millions of letters, emails, tweets, Facebook posts, and postcards in assist of those that are unjustly persecuted. Write for Rights has helped rework the lives of greater than 100 folks since 2001, releasing them from torture, harassment, or unjust imprisonment. In 2021, greater than 4.5 million actions had been taken, making Write for Rights the world’s largest human rights event.

Media contact: Cory Ruf, Media Officer, Amnesty International Canada (English-speaking Section), [email protected], 647-269-1795

A photograph accompanying this announcement is offered at

Canada celebrates world’s largest human rights event with first in-person Write-A-Thons in three years

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