Chair: David Huband
- Chair welcomed all to the meeting
- Minutes of last meeting agreed
Jane Saunders asked for volunteers to monitor the local press for letters & articles in the EDP concerning refugees so that the refugee sub-group can respond. Six members volunteered between them to monitor each day of the week.
David Huband gave a moving tribute to Liu Xiaobo whose death was announced by the Chinese authorities. A Chinese literary critic, poet and Human Rights activist, working as an academic in the US, he returned to China during the pro-democracy demonstrations, led a hunger strike and tried to organise a peaceful exit. He was imprisoned through much of the 1990s and was sentenced to a further 11 years in 2009. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010 for his ‘long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China’. He died of liver cancer on 13th July 2017.
Joanna highlighted the cases of two British-Iranian Nationals imprisoned in Iran and distributed letters to be signed on behalf of Nazanin Zhagari-Ratcliffe (a 5 year sentence). There has been a recent debate in Westminster Hall and members were encouraged to write to their MPs. Further details can be found on the Amnesty website.
David Ford said that due to lack of time, this has been postponed until next month. However, he reported that the Turkmenistan case of Ogulsapar Muradova (requesting a judicial enquiry into her death in custody), has been closed.
Urgent Actions – Turkey
Members are urged to campaign against the arrests and imprisonment of Taner Kilic, the Chair of Amnesty International’s Turkish Section. He has been sentenced to 7 years for allegedly being part of terrorist organisations. Also arrested is Idil Eser, who is the Director of AI Turkey. All details are on the Amnesty website.
There are c.12,000 children who have neither British Citizenship nor immigration permission to remain even though many were born here. However, to apply for citizenship costs £973 (profit to the government = £587) a sum which is unaffordable to many. Joanna highlighted a campaign to reduce the cost of applying for citizenship. See the petition at firstname.lastname@example.org
Petition against Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia
David Huband has collected a large number of signatures on a petition, and has written an accompanying letter which he will send to Clive Lewis MP.
- ‘Come yew in’ Street theatre which highlighted the contributions made by immigrants to Norwich over the centuries. Members distributed the Refugee leaflets to audiences.
- Refugee Sub-group meeting 7.00 Café Marzanos 27th July.
- Pride day – 29th July Members signed the rota sheet for our stall at the Forum.
- PSC Petition – Segregation in Hebron. Online.
- Rahma’s cycle ride to Jerusalem – a talk at the Friends’ Meeting House 5th August 10.00-11.30
- Peace Demonstration and Procession commemorating Hiroshima. St. Peter Mancroft to Chapelfield Gardens 5th August 12.00
- Octagon Amnesty Service with the Unitarians 11.00 Sunday, 6th August. All members very warmly welcomed
- ‘Give a home for Human Rights’ event. 20th September. David Ford is our contact for this.
The meeting ended at 8.30 and members went to the ‘Underbelly’ of the Rumsey Wells pub for a social get together with refugees in Norwich.
The next meeting will be held on Wednesday 16th August 2017