Iran: urgent action


October 2022

Iran is appearing in the news in the last week or so as a result of the death of a woman, Mahsa Amini, who was allegedly beaten by Iran’s Morality Police for not covering her hair properly. Riots have broken out all round the country and have continued for many days. According to Hrana, the Iranian human rights organisation, the family was told she would be released after attending a session on re-education. Yesterday, schoolgirls were reported to be shouting ‘get lost’ to a spokesman from the Morality Police.

This urgent action concerns two women under risk of execution for their real or perceived sexual orientation. If you are able to sign, that would be greatly appreciated. See the link below:

Urgent Action: Singapore


The authorities of Singapore have set the execution of Malaysian national Nagaenthran K Dharmalingam for 10 November. In violation of international law and standards, he was sentenced to the mandatory death penalty after he was found guilty of transporting 42.72 grams of diamorphine in April 2009. Several medical experts have found him to have borderline intellectual functioning and cognitive deficits, which might have impacted his ability assess risks and his accounts of the circumstances of the offence.

Full details are available from this link. If you can find time to make contact as suggested it would be appreciated.

Urgent Action

Urgent Action: USA


Man with intellectual disability to be executed in Missouri

Saudi Arabia is not the only country to flout international law when it comes to the death penalty.  The same is true in the US when it comes to executing people with intellectual disabilities.

Ernest Johnson faces execution on 5 October 2021. He was convicted and sentenced to death in 1995 for the 1994 murders of three employees of a convenience store in Missouri. A jury sentenced him to death despite a claim of intellectual disability in violation to international law. Johnson had surgery in 2008 to remove a brain tumour which has left him with seizures. Medical experts testified that the lethal injection drugs may trigger violent and painful seizures. State and federal courts have denied his claims for relief. We urge Governor Parson to halt the execution and commute his sentence. 

Please take action on Earnest Johnson’s behalf. There is no address but you can access the appeal form here.

Further background details

Urgent Action: Pakistan


This is an urgent action for a couple in prison in Faisalabad for the crime of blasphemy. They face the death penalty and have been in prison since 2014. They are Shafqat and Shagufta and further details can be found on the link below from Amnesty International. The problem is that the ‘crime’ of blasphemy is very hard to prove and is based often on hearsay. The allegation can be made as part of a feud. If you have time to respond to the action it would be appreciated. Previous actions have been successful in gaining the release of people accused of this so-called crime.

https://action.amnesty.org.au/emailviewonwebpage.aspx?erid=5d509ae4-2412-4e4b-ad09-a619edd94cf1&trid=5d509ae4-2412-4e4b-ad09-a619edd94cf1

Urgent Action: Iran


This is an urgent action on behalf of Jamshid Sharmahd, a German/Iranian who is at risk of execution following a grossly unfair trial. He has been arbitrarily held for around 8 months and has no access to an independent lawyer. There are fears that he is not receiving adequate health care.

If you can spare time to write that would be appreciated.

https://www.amnesty.org.uk/tags/death-penalty

Urgent action: Pakistan


Listen to the podcast of this post.

This urgent action is on behalf of a Christian couple in Pakistan who are on death row for ‘Blasphemy’ still a crime in that country. If convicted, the death penalty is mandatory. The laws are vague and arouse considerable tensions. Allegations can be made and it is extremely difficult for the police and courts to carry out proper investigations. Angry crowds can congregate, whipped up by religious clerics and their supporters, making it extremely difficult for justice to be done. Judges are under pressure to convict or risk becoming targets themselves. Some individuals take the law into their own hands and anyone associated with the accused, including lawyers, are at risk of attack or murder.

Another problem is constant trial postponements as judges are reluctant to decide. Since defendants are denied bail, it can mean years spent in captivity. Pakistan’s Supreme Court has said that many of these accusations are false and are made for ulterior motives and to settle feuds.

This UA is on behalf of a Christian couple, Shafqat Emmanuel and Shagfur Kauser sentence to death in 2014 for allegedly sending a blasphemous text to a cleric. They have been in prison for nearly 8 years awaiting their appeal. They should not be in prison at all.

The link below gives the full details and a suggested letter which can be sent via email. Since many of our followers are in the USA (welcome!) the US embassy address to send copies is:

Embassy of Pakistan

3517 International Ct

Washington DC 20008

Or the email is: info@embassyofpakistanusa.org

https://www.amnesty.org.uk/files/2021-03/UA02721.pdf?QEv1vD6d7Ni0TZ2dP39_R6PJEihuUAaO=

We hope you have time to write. Thank you.

Urgent Action: Iran


Two prisoners at risk of execution in Iran

Death row prisoners from Iran’s Baluchi ethnic minority, Hamed Rigi and Mehran Naru’i, are at risk of execution. They have been subjected to serious human rights violations including enforced disappearance and torture and other ill-treatment to extract “confessions” used to convict and sentence them to death in unfair trials.

Since mid-December 2020, the Iranian authorities have executed 18 Baluchi men, raising fears that Hamed Rigi and Mehran Naru’i may be executed imminently.

Fuller details and a model form of words can be found here and we hope you can find time to write.


Members of the Salisbury group might like to know we hope to hold a Zoom meeting on 11 March in the evening.

Urgent Action: Nigeria


Young man at risk of execution in Nigeria for alleged blasphemy

Yahaya Sharif-Aminu. Pic: thewillnigeria

Yahaya Sharif-Aminu (pictured), 22, a singer, is in prison in Kano, Nigeria and is at risk of execution for alleged blasphemy.  This is an urgent action asking you to write to the authorities for his release.

The death sentence handed down to Yahaya Sharif-Aminu by the Upper Sharia Court in Kano state, Nigeria was widely criticized across Nigeria and also by Amnesty International after a huge outcry by several individuals and religious bodies urging the Governor of Kano state not to sign his execution warrant.

There were serious concerns about the fairness of Yahaya Sharif-Aminu’s trial and the framing of the charges against him. Before and during the trial, he was not permitted legal representation.  He was granted access to legal advice to prepare an appeal after human rights lawyers and activists pressured the court to respect his right to legal representation.

In Kano state under the Sharia law, blasphemy is a criminal offence with a death penalty.  The death penalty remains a legal sanction in Nigeria and continues to be imposed throughout the country.  In 2019, over 54 death sentences were recorded. In total, over 2,700 people were under death sentence by the end of the year.  In Nigeria, the 2004 National Study Group on Death Penalty and the 2007 Presidential Commission on the Administration of Justice both stressed that the Nigerian criminal justice system cannot guarantee a fair trial and called for a moratorium on the death penalty.

Sentence of death for singing a song

In 2008, the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (African Commission) adopted its second
resolution on the death penalty, calling on States Parties to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights –
such as Nigeria – to “observe a moratorium on the execution of death sentences with a view to abolishing the
death penalty” and to ratify the ICCPR-OP2.  In a study published on 19 April 2012, the Working Group on the
Death Penalty of the African Commission reaffirmed the necessity of the abolition of capital punishment and
suggested ways for its achievement.

We would be grateful if you can find time to write.  There is an email address as well.

Urgent Action

 

Death penalty in Belarus


Two people at risk of execution

Belarus is the last European nation to maintain the death penalty and this urgent action is asking you to take part in the campaign please.  In addition to the penalty itself, the execution is carried out in secrecy with neither the family or their legal representatives told when it will be nor where where they are buried afterwards.

Urgent Action

Belarus Embassy, London. Pic: Salisbury Amnesty

 

Urgent Action: Iran


Iranian-Swedish academic at risk of imminent execution for the crime of ‘corruption on earth’

We have received the urgent action concerning Ahmadreza Djalili who is at risk of execution in Tehran.  He suffered a grossly unfair trial based on confessions obtained using torture and other ill-treatment.  If you have time, please write – the details can be found on the attached link. Thank you.

Urgent action details

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