Newsletter

Welcome to the latest news update from Amnesty Norwich.

Recent Events

There have been a series of events to commemorate and raise awareness about the sad outcome of the Holocaust and those who died when nuclear bombs were dropped on Nagasaki and Hiroshima in World War II.

roma

Another vigil has taken place on 2nd August at the Peace Pillar in Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich to remember the 3,000 Roma who were taken from the Zigeunerlager [Gypsy Camp], pictured below at Auschwitz on 2nd and 3rd August 1944 by members of the SS and murdered. Readings were given and an account of the current situation of Roma was given.

Perico Rodríguez

At the September 17th meeting of the Amnesty Norwich group, Perico Rodríguez gave us a talk about his barbaric treatment and torture in Argentina during the junta of General Jorge Videla, and subsequent freedom and recovery in the UK. It was a moving and informative talk from an eloquent speaker. He also highlighted the plight of torture victims who still suffer in this day.

We also greeted the families of Chilean prisoners of conscience who attended our meeting on 18th June who showed us a fascinating video about their lives and struggles under the dictatorship of General Pinochet.

Pride Without Prejudice

We had a very successful stall at The Forum during the Norwich Pride event on July 26th, where we described the struggles LGBTIQ people face worldwide, collected many signatures and met a lot of supportive members of the public who wanted to know more about our campaigns and activities. This was an extremely cheerful event for all involved. See you there next year!

Street Collection

A sunny disposition greeted the local Norwich Amnesty members as they took to the streets of Norwich on 5th July to raise money with our annual street collection. The amount raised was £250.70. Thank you to all who helped out and everyone who donated.

Norwich Amnesty Street Collection 2014 - 3

Peace Camp

The Peace Camp held at the Forum in July 2014 was a chance for many campaign groups in Norwich to come together and share their views and ideas. We took many signatures for our current campaigns and talked to many members of the public about our work. For more information about Peace Camp see: http://www.norwichpeace.org

Amnesty at Appleyard’s Fundraiser

We brought together some excellent poets and musicians to appear at the Amnesty at Appleyard’s fundraising event on Thursday 22nd September. The room was packed and the performances by Vince Laws, Echoes in the Well, A Civilian, John William Brown and Discharge Lounge were greatly enjoyed by all who attended.

Many thanks to Appleyard and Co. on Exchange Street, Norwich for hosting us!

Keep on Running

Emily Ford, the daughter of Amnesty Norwich member Heather Ford, earned over £375 for Amnesty by running a half marathon through the royal parks. Excellent work Emily!

The Global Perspective

Mexico

Groups activity pack, September 2014 - Torture in Mexico

In the last ten years, reports of torture by Mexican forces rose by 600% – yet the Mexican government is still not taking torture seriously. The few investigations that have been launched are slow and inadequate. Between 2006 and the end of 2013, 1,219 investigations into torture by Mexican forces were opened by the Federal Attorney General’s Office; they filed charges for just 12 cases. That means that 98% of investigations go nowhere.

The majority of those tortured by the police are people who are least likely to be able to file complaints and seek redress. People like Claudia Medina Tamariz, who was accused of being a member of a violent gang and taken by marines to a naval base where she was beaten, sexually assaulted and given electric shocks. To this date no one has been held to account for her torture.

Amnesty International is calling on the Federal Attorney General to:

  • Investigate the alleged torture and ill-treatment suffered by Claudia Medina Tamariz.
  • Make the results public.
  • Bring those responsible to justice.

Please write to: Federal Attorney General Jesús Murillo Karam
Procuraduría General de la República
Av. Paseo de la Reforma 211-213
Col. Cuauhtémoc C.P. 06500
Mexico D.F.
MEXICO

Syria

Syria continues to be pounded by the military forces of General Assad as he attempts to maintain his stranglehold on the country.
The human toll of the horror in Syria is catastrophic. More than 3.5 million have fled to neighbouring countries to escape the bloody conflict. But so far, the UK has only resettled 90 people – a shamefully low number. Currently Syria’s neighbours – Turkey, Lebanon, Jordon, Iraq and Egypt – are shouldering the responsibility by hosting 97% of Syria’s refugees, but most of the international community is failing to respond to this need.

On 9 December 2014, the U.K. government will have the chance to pledge how many Syrian refugees they will resettle at a conference in Geneva.

Our government must seize this opportunity to offer a home to thousands, not just hundreds of the most vulnerable Syrian people. Amnesty has asked members to contact their local MPs to ask them to make a difference and commit to resettle more Syrian refugees who cannot fend for themselves. Act now by visiting this web page: https://www.amnesty.org.uk/actions/uk-act-now-resettle-syria-refugees

Gaza

We will all have witnessed the brutal actions of the Israeli government meted out against the Palestinian people living in the Gaza enclave. There were demonstrations against the attacks across the world, yet most countries have not lifted a finger to help. The British and U.S. governments are up to their necks in complicity with the acts of Israel. We sell billions worth of arms to Israel and repeat the lie that Israel, with one of the most sophisticated military forces in the world, is defending itself against the Palestinians, whereas the reality is 70 years of aggression by Israel against the Palestinians.

Take action here:
http://www.amnesty.org.uk/issues/Israel-and-Palestine

These are the issues that the Amnesty Norwich group are campaigning on and some of the events coming up soon.

Current Campaigns

Uzbekistan Case Continues

The Amnesty Norwich group has been given a new case file to handle regarding prisoners of conscience held in Uzbekistan. We are working alongside other Amnesty groups to bring this issue to light.

Shaker Aamer’s Plight Continues

We continue to pressure the U.K. and U.S. government to release British national Shaker Aamer from the hideous Guantanamo Bay Detention Centre where he is being force fed while on hunger strike, and where inmates are regularly mistreated. Recently some key figures such as Roger Waters of Pink Floyd, Caroline Lucas of the Green Party, Clive Stafford-Smith of Reprieve and Andy Worthington from the We Stand With Shaker Aamer campaign have leant their support to Shaker’s plight in a protest outside the British parliament. Yet still Shaker languishes in detention without a fair trial or any evidence being held against him.

Please write to your local MP, the American Embassy and President Obama to voice your concern about this gross injustice.

Find out more about what we are doing at the following link to our website:

http://www.norwichamnesty.org.uk/what-we-do/

Amnesty Christmas Cards on Sale Now

Amnesty Christmas cards are on sale now at ‘The Original Norwich Charity
Christmas Card Shop’ at the new venue of ALL SAINTS’ CHURCH, Westlegate,
Norwich. (Opposite John Lewis). Unlike the Forum Charity stall, ALL proceeds go to the charities. The stall will run from Monday to Saturday up until 19th December.

Forthcoming Events

Write for Rights – Sunday 21st December
Appleyard and Co., Exchange Street
11am-3pm

Come along to write your cards and messages of support to prisoners of conscience across the world. Find out more at: https://www.amnesty.org.uk/issues/Write-for-Rights-2014

chelsea-manning

We exist through a lot of support and hard, but rewarding, work and we always need a good number of volunteers to help and advertise our events. So we invite you to offer your assistance. Please come to a monthly meeting or contact us on info@norwichamnesty.org.uk

Amnesty Norwich Monthly Meetings

We meet on the third Wednesday of each month, 7.30pm at the Charing Cross Centre, St. John Maddermarket, Norwich.

Forthcoming meetings at the Charing Cross Centre will be held on:

Wednesday December 17th

Wednesday January 21st

Wednesday February 18th

Other Meetings and Events

End of January – Amnesty Norwich Quiz and Dips – date and ticket price to be confirmed! See the website for further details!

28th February – Freedom from Torture Ceilidh event.

For more information about Amnesty, visit:

If you have any items for the next newsletter, please email them to: newsletter@amnestynorwich.org.uk

Downloads

Download Autumn 2014 Newsletter (Word)

Download Autumn 2014 Newsletter (PDF)