marielle francoMarielle Franco was born and raised in a favela in Rio, Brazil. An elected councillor, she worked tirelessly to promote the rights of black women, LGBTI and young people.

Marielle inspired many people. She refused to stay silent about police killings and continued to speak out against injustice right up until hours before her brutal killing in March 2018. A car pulled up beside hers, and Marielle was shot four times in the head. Her driver Anderson Pedro Gomes was also killed.

People who defend human rights in Brazil, like Marielle, are often attacked or threatened. The authorities do not respond adequately – and most of these crimes go completely unpunished. Two ex military policemen are currently under arrest; unfortunately that can often lead to no further action. We need to maintain the spotlight on her case.

Marielle dedicated her life to speaking out for LGBTI, black and women’s rights in Brazil. She paid the ultimate price for defending human rights.

Demand a full, independent investigation into her murder by signing the AIUK petition to the Brazilian president, Jair Bolsonaro. Click on the link below…

Welcome to the latest newsletter.
Happy new year to you all. The next meeting  is on Thursday 9th January 2020, 7.30pm  at Moordown Community Centre. On the agenda – planning for year ahead, letter writing

Write 4 Rights 2019

We held a fantastic ‪Write for Rights event at Bournemouth Library We got over 100 cards signed by passing members of the public; its Amnesty International’s annual campaign, sending greetings cards to prisoners of conscience and other human rights defenders around the world. Read more about it here.
After many years of standing in the wet and cold and being ignored by passing shoppers, it was a delight to be both inside and warmly received.
W4R was about sending cards of support, rather than campaigning. But in all cases their are opportunities to take further action if you wish – see the case of Sarah and Seán below. But you can also go to the AIUK site and click to send emails or add your name to petitions.

South America Newsletter

The January edition of the South America Regional Newsletter is now on the blog. Our group has focused on South America since its inception, which is also reflected in our case files – see below. The 3 volunteers who run the network for AIUK – and produce the newsletter – do a huge amount of work on our behalf.
One alarming statistic reported from the New York Times is that in 2018 the number of people officially killed by the police reached a five-year high rising to 6,220. That’s an average of 17 a day.
Official statistics are only part of the picture. Masked illegal militias, that by their own admission draw in off-duty and retired officers, regularly commit extrajudicial killings.
President Jair Bolsonaro has made his mark in 2019 with some of his comments relating to the destruction of the Amazon. But he has also declared that  criminals should “die like cockroaches”, so the figure for police killings is expected to rise.

Sea Rescue Volunteers Face 25 Years in Jail

Sarah and Seán were volunteering as trained rescuers for a search-and-rescue organisation in Lesvos in 2018. Their job was to help spot boats in distress at sea and help refugees. Sarah knew all too well about the dangers of sea crossings, having almost sunk in a dinghy fleeing Syria in 2015. Instead of being celebrated, Sarah and Seán ended up behind bars – charged with spying, people smuggling and belonging to a criminal organisation.
Greek police locked them up for 100 days before being released on bail. Sarah and Seán could go to prison for 25 years for trying to save lives in the Mediterranean.
Email Greek Minister of Citizens’ Protection demanding all charges are dropped.

South America Newsletter January 2020

January 5, 2020

This month we have good news from Colombia and Brazil. However, we report on the victims of the ongoing conflict in Colombia, and the staggering violence in Brazil’s Amazon as well as police killings across that country. We focus on the challenge to Colombia and Brazil on the arrival of large numbers of refugees from […]

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Write 4 Rights 2019

December 22, 2019

We held a fantastic ‪Write for Rights event at Bournemouth Library We got over 100 cards signed by passing members of the public; its Amnesty International UK annual campaign, sending greetings cards to prisoners of conscience and other human rights defenders around the world. Thanks to Jessica, Val, Michael and all the other staff at […]

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Group Newsletter December 2019

December 10, 2019

Welcome to the latest newsletter. Human Rights Day is observed every year on 10 December – the day the United Nations General Assembly adopted, in 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. You may like to bring this to people’s attention as you go about your day tomorrow… The next meeting  is on Thursday 12th December, 7.30pm  at […]

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South America Newsletter December 2019

December 6, 2019

Another eventful month, with calls from Amnesty and others for a response to the human rights violations committed during the anti-government protests in Colombia, Chile, Bolivia and Ecuador.  In addition, Amnesty has issued a major report on illegal cattle ranching in the Brazilian Amazon.  There are three new Urgent Actions, two on Colombia and one […]

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Autumn Quiz 2019

November 24, 2019

Thanks to everyone who turned out for latest Amnesty Quiz at the Branksome Liberal Club in Parkstone. 6 teams battled it out and we raised £220. With overseas postage now starting at £1.35 this is a great boost to our funds. And much more fun than doing a street collection! Thanks to David Rogers for […]

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South West Schools Human Rights Conference

November 14, 2019

Over the past decade Amnesty International UK has developed a national programme of Amnesty Speakers who play a key role in delivering human rights workshops, lessons and assemblies in schools across the UK. The South West Speaker Coordinator, and also a member of our group, Tom Wilson organised the first ever UK Schools Human Rights […]

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Group Newsletter November 2019

November 6, 2019

Welcome to the latest newsletter. The next meeting  is on Thursday 14th November 2019, 7.30pm  at Moordown Community Centre. On the agenda –  Quiz night, letter writing, Write 4 Rights events and other planning. This is a slightly earlier and shorter newsletter, as the day after our next meeting we have a…. This is organised for Friday November 15th, […]

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South America Newsletter November 2019

November 6, 2019

There has been much happening in South America this month, hence a slightly longer than usual newsletter. There is good news regarding international support for Venezuelan refugees and migrants, however, there are troubling reports of human rights abuses in Chile, Ecuador and Bolivia in response to protests. Court action to secure LGBTI rights in Paraguay […]

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