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May 2021 Minutes

Thanks again To MDS for these minutes. As ever they can be read as a PDF if that is your preference.

Glasgow West Amnesty Minutes

May Meeting - 13 May 2021

Attending: CA, MDS, JG, IJ, KM, MR, EY

  1. Introductions

    • Group Chair: Claire Crossan is standing down as group chair with the thanks of everyone for all her work as chair over the years. Mal and Freya have agreed to pick-up the role on an interim basis until we are back to in person meetings and can appoint a new chair.
  2. Long-term case – Women Human Rights Defenders in Saudi Arabia

    • This action is focused on women human rights defenders arrested in Saudi Arabia, including Loujain al-Hathloul, al-Hathloul, Nassima al-Sada and Samar Badawi. While Loujain has been released and Nassima and Samar are expected to be released in June they will not be free. Their sentences may have an element that has been suspended meaning that they are risk in any future crackdown. They and their families face travel bans. They face a ‘probationary’ period which will prevent them from speaking about the violations they have suffered and which will stop them from continuing their previous human rights work. They will face continued stigma because of the government’s smear campaign. The women should be unconditionally free from prison, travel bans and other forms of intimidation and threats that hinder their own safety, well-being and activism.

    • Those at the meetings were asked to write letters, tweet and email.

    • If you would like a copy of the most recent Saudi Arabia newsletter for more information, please get in touch with Christine - "christinealison@btinternet.com".

  3. Urgent actions

  4. Monthly mailing

    • Anoosheh Ashoori (Iran): Anoosheh was visiting his elderly mother in Tehran when he was arrested by Ministry of Intelligence agents in August 2017 and arbitrarily detained in Evin prison. Online petition: https://www.amnesty.org.uk/actions/help-get-retired-father-home-his-family. Re-tweet: https://twitter.com/AmnestyUK/status/1386986613750837252. If you want to send any messages of solidarity, you can send these to Amnesty and they will make sure to share these with his family: anoosheh-solidairty@amnesty.org.uk

    • Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe (Iran): Earlier this week, Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was given a new jail sentence of one year for “propaganda against the system” and a ban on her leaving the country for a year after, following a hearing before an Iranian Revolutionary Court in Tehran last month. This is the news that we and her family feared the most and further proof of the incredible cruelty of the Iranian regime. Instead of spending the last five years with her young daughter, Nazanin has been unjustly and arbitrarily trapped in Iran. Re-tweet: https://twitter.com/AmnestyUK/status/1387000815622270976. Share on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AmnestyUK/photos/a.398583814394/10159177802269395 You can send solidarity messages for her family to Nazanin-solidarity@amnesty.org.uk

    • Anoosheh and Nazanin (Iran) - Contact your MP: If you would like to take further action with your local MP, please email Amnesty (Nazanin.Anoosheh-MP-Action@amnesty.org.uk) and they will send you a briefing on how you can take action.

    • Elena Milashina (Russia): a reporter for Novaya Gazeta, reported the abduction, torture and murder of gay men in Chechnya, in the North Caucasus, is now facing death threats after her article exposing unlawful arrests, torture and extrajudicial killings there was published in March. Online petition: https://www.amnesty.org/en/get-involved/take-action/russia-chechnya-elena-milashina/

    • Hearts and Lives Broken: The Nightmare of Uyghur Families Separated by Repression: Call on China to allow reunion of Uyghur families. Some Uyghur parents have been separated from their children as a result of the unprecedented crackdown on ethnic populations in Xinjiang. With your voice, we can push China to end this separation. Letter action: https://www.amnesty.org.uk/resources/hearts-and-lives-broken-nightmare-uyghur-families-separated-repression

    • Syria: New blog - On the Trauma of Advocacy by Mansour Omari: Mansour Omari is a Syrian human rights defender, working to hold the perpetrators of international crimes in Syria accountable. In 2012, Omar was detained and tortured by the Syrian government for 356 days for documenting its atrocities. In this new blog, he talks about the impact of reliving his trauma as part of his fight for justice. His words are powerful and incredibly brave. Please share widely. https://www.amnesty.org.uk/blogs/campaigns-blog/trauma-advocacy

    • Amnesty Group News: As Amnesty’s 60th anniversary approaches, we’re delighted to share with you the latest edition of Groups News, which is packed full of wonderful stories of activism from the last six decades, as well as examples of some of the great work you’ve been doing over the last six months. http://email.amnestyuk.org.uk/files/amf_amnesty/project_58/GNL_Spring_2021_for_web.pdf

  5. Future meetings/ events

    • Tuesday 18th May – Amnesty Scotland Online Activism group talk on human rights in China

    • Tuesday 18th May – Human Rights Act roadshow

    • Thursday 10th June – Group picnic.

    • Looking at options for return to in person meetings later in the summer.

  6. AOB

    • Treasurer report - £358.89 in the account

    • One of the former members has an archive of old group material that we might want to have a think about.

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