Chair: David Huband
Chair welcomed all to the meeting.
Apologies: David Ford, Roz Cadwallader
Minutes of last Open Meeting agreed
Joanna highlighted the case in Japan of Matsumoto Kenji who was arrested with his brother on 17 Sept 1993 for two robberies and murders committed between Sept. 1990 and Sept 1991. Kenji has a mental disability and low IQ. He was dependent on his brother, who killed himself in detention after his arrest. Despite this, the court ruled Kenji to be mentally competent to stand trial. He was found guilty and sentenced to death. Members are asked to sign letters to the minister of justice asking her to commute the death sentence and make sure that Kenji has adequate medical treatment. All details on the AIUK website.
Ali Mohammed Baqir al-Nimr
In Saudi Arabia, accused of terrorist offences, he was arrested and charged in 2012 at the age of 17. He was tortured and, as a result, signed a confession used in his trial. The judge failed to order an investigation and passed the death sentence. This is despite the fact that Saudi Arabia is a signatory to The Convention on the Rights of the Child. Joanna distributed letters for signing. Members are asked to write to the Minister of the Interior.
Details at email@example.com .
David Huband introduced the case of Wang Yu and other members of the Chinese Fengrui law firm who were detained on 9th July and from whom nothing has been heard since. Her husband and 16 year old son have also been detained – whereabouts unknown. Members were asked to sign and address letters to the Chinese Minister of Public Security asking that they should have regular and unrestricted access to their lawyers and families.
Some good news about September’s Monthly Action
The Supreme Court in India will protect the two Indian sisters and their family against the sentence of rape by their unelected all-male village council in Uttar Pradesh.
Such very good news – but now it’s a case of “wait and see”
The Human Rights Act
David Huband said that Amnesty has launched its campaign with very effective adverts on the Tube – “This is what the Human Rights Act has done for me.” He will try to get copies for our use. There followed a discussion about the nature of a Norwich Campaign, but it was agreed that it should be left until after Christmas as we need to be better informed and more confident of the detailed issues than we currently are.
Members were reminded that the deadline for responding to the consultation on improving our Constitution is November 2nd. A booklet ‘Improving our Constitution: Consultation Proposals’ was included in the Autumn magazine but more information and the online form can be found at www.amnesty.org.uk/2015Review .
Philip Wilson gave an extremely interesting short talk on ‘Turkey: Some thoughts on the current situation’.
David Huband has made contact with Clive Lewis’ secretary and asked for a meeting. Since he has already written to Mr Lewis about welfare payments to asylum seekers, this might be a profitable topic but it was agreed that the threat to The Human Rights Act is probably more important.
Chelmsford Group meeting
The Chelmsford Group sent an invitation to a talk, ‘Big Brother and Human Rights’ given by Dr. Darrah Murray, Director of the Human Rights at Essex University
Write for Rights
This will take place in mid-late December. More information when the venue has been confirmed.
This has been postponed as there were concerns about the route
Joint meeting with UEA
Faisal and Jonno reported that there was a busy schedule. And most students will have left before Write for Rights take place.
Sue reported that it has been very difficult to find a venue this year, but the Charity Card Shop this year will be in the Royal Arcade (No. 6). Trading will start on Wednesday 4th November. This is two weeks later than usual, but it is a busier venue than last year, so sales should be good.
Quiz in aid of the Freedom from Torture Charity.
- Friday, 27th November at the Trinity United Reform Church Hall (City end of Unthank Rd.)
- 7.15 For 7.30 start.
- Tickets (£10) purchased in advance from 01603 615875.
- Bread, Cheese, Fruit, Pickles on each table.
- Fat Cat beer and Fairtrade Wine to purchase.
Next Meeting – Wednesday 18th November 2015 at 7.30pm