DUBAI: A Saudi Shiite teenager who was arrested at the age of 13 and faced the death penalty will not be executed, activists said Monday, after his case drew international criticism. Saudi prosecutors had sought the death sentence for Murtaja Qureiris (pix), now 18, for a series of offences including participating in anti-government protests, rights groups reported this month. Some of those offences dated back to when Qureiris, who is from the kingdom’s minority Shiite community, was 10 years old, they said. The teenager will not be executed and could be released by 2022, according to campaigners including the European Saudi Organization for Human Rights which has tracked his case for years. The teenager has been sentenced to 12 years in prison, which includes time already served since his arrest and four years suspended, CNN reported citing a Saudi official. That effectively leaves him with three more years in jail. “The news that Murtaja Qureiris will not face execution … [Read more...] about Saudi arrested at 13 will not be executed: campaigners
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Sweden's teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg was Friday awarded a prestigious Amnesty International prize for mobilising world public opinion on the looming peril of global warming. The 16-year-old issued a statement declaring it "a huge honour to receive Amnesty International's Ambassador of Conscience Award," saying it was recognition for everybody inspired by her "Fridays for Future" movement that has seen students strike from school to take part in climate protests. "To act on your conscience means that you fight for what you think is right," she said. To AFPTV, she said "it's amazing to get recognition like this". Thunberg, a fierce campaigner with a gift for public speaking, has become a figurehead for young climate activists internationally. International organisations often invite her to climate change events in an effort to put a human face on the fight to curb carbon emissions. Last week, she appeared alongside actor and former politician Arnold Schwarzenegger at a … [Read more...] about Teen climate activist Greta Thunberg gets Amnesty prize
HARARE: Amnesty International on Thursday (May 30) suspended its local branch in Zimbabwe after uncovering evidence of fraud, in the first ever such move by the rights advocacy group.Amnesty issued a statement saying "an extensive forensic audit was conducted in late 2018 which uncovered evidence of fraud and serious financial mismanagement".It said that the Zimbabwe branch had been suspended from the global organisation and placed under administration and the Zimbabwean police had been informed of the audit findings."The decision has been made to take extraordinary measures ... to protect the reputation, integrity and operation of the movement," it added.The London-based group gave no further details, but said it would try to recover lost funds and that urgent measures had been introduced to ensure donor money was safe.Amnesty has focused recent work in Zimbabwe on campaigning against the arrest of rights activists, promoting media freedom and calling for accountability for … [Read more...] about Amnesty suspends Zimbabwe branch after fraud probe
HANOI: Vietnam has stepped up its imprisonment of political activists, Amnesty International said in a report on Monday (May 13), intensifying a crackdown that has seen the number of prisoners of conscience increase by almost a third since last year.Nearly 10 per cent of the 128 prisoners held in the Southeast Asian country for expressing dissenting views were jailed for posting anti-state comments on social media platforms such as Facebook, the report said.Amnesty defines prisoners of conscience as people who have not used or advocated violence but have been imprisoned because of their identify or beliefs."In the past year, the Vietnamese authorities have made a clear effort to clamp down on social media," Nguyen Truong Son, Amnesty's Vietnam Campaigner, told Reuters."They have realised that Facebook was one of the last safe spaces where people could peacefully speak their mind, spread news, hold debates - everything the authorities are afraid of," Son said.Despite presiding … [Read more...] about Vietnam intensifies crackdown on online dissent: Amnesty report
By Brian Lee Crowley Justin Mohammed Opinion Tues., April 30, 2019 Are the federal Liberals right to make it more difficult for immigrants and refugees to enter Canada from the United States? Brian Lee Crowley, managing director of the Macdonald-Laurier Institute, argues Yes, while Justin Mohammed, a human rights law and policy campaigner at Amnesty International, argues No. Yes, Canada would be right to tighten its borders, particularly with respect to those who have been entering Canada illegally. Unfortunately, while the government is making noises that it wants to do so, there is little evidence that those measures will be effective. Let’s begin with why it would make sense to toughen border controls. Canada’s highly successful postwar immigration policy, supported by an all-party political consensus and public opinion, has never been laissez-faire about who gets in. On the contrary. That admirable policy has always been premised on the idea that … [Read more...] about Is Canada right to tighten its border?