Feeding the Darkness

The Journeyman Theatre performed their critically acclaimed play “Feeding the Darkness” at the Friends Meeting House,  Boscombe, on June 25th.  The day was chosen as the following day was the United Nations, International Day in Support of Victims of Torture.  It was a powerful 65 minute performance by the duo. It was the result of extensive research into the dark world of state-sanctioned torture and its stark impact on victims, perpetrators, families and those who collude in the ‘process’.

Our Group had been invited to have a stall and will featured some case and campaigns that revolve around torture.  Most of the 40 plus audience took time out to look at the displays and ask us questions. The cases are all featured below….

Cases from “Feeding the Darkness” event and Alexander Dakers BIC exhibition

Dr Mudawi Ibrahim Adam

Dr Mudawi Ibrahim Adam

Dr Mudawi Ibrahim Adam

Letter to Sudanese authorities you can quickly email, via Amnesty Ireland.  Dr Mudawi was arrested for his human rights work and held without charge for almost five months. He has now been charged with six offences, two of which are punishable by life imprisonment, or worse, death.

Witnesses have stated that Dr Mudawi was tortured in prison including being chained to a pole with his hands cuffed and his legs shackled, as government agents brutally beat him. Dr Mudawi went on hunger strike protesting his imprisonment, and even though he suffers from chronic respiratory and heart complications, he has only been allowed access to a doctor three times since his detention in December. He was only allowed to speak to his lawyer for the first time 77 days after he was imprisoned.

STOP PRESS Dr Mudawi was released, along with five other human rights defenders, late on 29 August 2017. All charges have been dropped. Thanks to everyone who has campaigned on his behalf.  See statement from AI: https://www.amnesty.ie/sudan-dr-mudawi-released-eight-months-wrongful-imprisonment/

Demand Justice for Boys Tortured and Jailed for Life

https://www.amnesty.org.uk/actions/demand-justice-tortured-boys

The seven teenagers sentenced to death in Puntland; five have been executed

The seven teenagers sentenced to death in Puntland; five have been executed

Letter to Somalia authorities you can quickly email, via Amnesty UK.

When two Somalian teenagers were arrested they were locked in shipping containers for a fortnight. Muhamed, 17, and Daud, just 15, were violently tortured – reporting electrocutions, genital mutilation, drownings, beatings and rape. Now they face life in prison after being forced into a confession. Five other young boys arrested alongside them were executed last month.

https://www.amnesty.org.uk/actions/demand-justice-tortured-boys

Ammar al Baluchi

http://www.amnesty.ca/get-involved/take-action-now/usa-torture-survivor-faces-unfair-trial-guantanamo

Ammar al Baluchi

Ammar al Baluchi

Ammar al Baluchi faces charges, including the death penalty, for an alleged role in the 9/11 attacks.

In April 2003, Ammar was abducted and taken into US custody in Pakistan. For the next three years, the CIA subjected him to enforced disappearance, moving him to different CIA-operated “black sites”. Throughout this time, Ammar was brutally tortured by CIA authorities as part of their interrogation program. Acts of torture that he was forced to endure include: water torture similar to water boarding; continuous high volume music; extreme sleep deprivation; forced nudity, and beatings that have resulted in a painful traumatic brain injury.

Ammar was transferred to prison at Guantánamo Bay in 2006, where he still is today. He continues to suffer from symptoms including the inability to sleep, along with severe physical and psychological pain, as a result from his torture and brain injury – all inflicted at the hands of US authorities. He has yet to receive medical treatment or rehabilitation for his extensive injuries. This continues to affect Ammar’s ability to participate effectively in his own defense, even though the United States has invoked the death penalty against him. Ammar al Baluchi’s trial has yet to begin. We have created a letter you can download, edit and send to  Jim Mattis, Secretary of Defence in the USA. Click here

http://www.amnesty.ca/get-involved/take-action-now/usa-torture-survivor-faces-unfair-trial-guantanamo

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe & Gabriella

http://freenazanin.com/

British-Iranian charity worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was arrested in April 2016 at Tehran’s Imam Khomeini Airport.

She was about to fly home to the UK with her two-year old daughter, Gabriella, following a family visit. Nazanin was allowed to leave Gabriella with her parents, but the toddler’s British passport was confiscated. Since then Nazanin has been allowed only very restricted visits from her family, subjected to solitary confinement, and accused of plotting the ‘soft overthrow of the Islamic Republic’. She may have been coerced into making a ‘confession’. Nazanin’s family said she was sentenced to five years in prison on unspecified ‘national security-related charges’ on 6 September. She has since lost an appeal against the sentence.

Nazanin’s husband Richard has been quite vocal in trying to get the British Foreign Office to press hader to free his wife – Guardian August 2017 .  AIUK have been campaigning on Nazanin’s behalf and she was part of the Write 4 Rights camapign. Current action go to http://freenazanin.com/

Egypt: Seven men facing imminent execution after being tortured in custody

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2017/06/egypt-seven-men-facing-imminent-execution-after-being-tortured-in-custody/

From left to right: Khaled Askar, Ahmed Meshaly, Mahmoud Wahba, Abdel Rahman Atteya, Ibrahim Azzab, Bassem el-Khereby

From left to right: Khaled Askar, Ahmed Meshaly, Mahmoud Wahba, Abdel Rahman Atteya, Ibrahim Azzab, Bassem el-Khereby

On 7 June Egypt’s Court of Cassation, upheld death sentences against Bassem el-Khereby, Ahmed Meshaly, Ibrahim Azab, Mahmoud Wahba, Khaled Askar, and Abd el-Rahman Atteia after a deeply flawed trial. The man they are accused of murdering was a police guard of one of the judges sitting on a panel on a trial of President Mohamed Morsi.

According to their families and lawyers, they were arrested by the National Security Agency (NSA) in March 2014 and forcibly disappeared for periods of between three days and three months cutting off their access to their relatives, lawyers and the outside world while being tortured to obtain videotaped “confessions”. They were held in different locations across the country including the NSA headquarters in Cairo.

At least three of the families told Amnesty International that they only learnt their sons had been detained when they saw them “confessing” on TV with bruised faces. When the families were finally allowed to visit their sons in prison they told them that they had been tortured by being anally raped repeatedly using a wooden stick, given electric shocks on the genitals and other parts of the body, suspended in stress positions for periods of up to four days. They said that NSA officers had burned them in the neck with cigarette butts and threatened to rape their mothers and sisters in order to pressure them to confess.

The men later retracted their confessions before a state security prosecutor in Cairo, explaining they had been tortured. But they were then returned to the NSA where they were tortured again as punishment for withdrawing their statements and sent back to the prosecutor for a second time where they “confessed” fearing further reprisals.

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2017/06/egypt-seven-men-facing-imminent-execution-after-being-tortured-in-custody/

Fomusoh Ivo Feh

http://write.amnestyusa.org/cases/fomusoh-ivo-feh/

Fomusoh Ivo Feh

Fomusoh Ivo Feh

Fomusoh Ivo Feh was set to start university when he received a satirical text message from a friend:

‘Boko Haram recruits young people from 14 years old and above. Conditions for recruitment: 4 subjects at GCE, including religion.’

The message was a joke about how difficult it is to find a job in Cameroon – so even an armed group like Boko Haram would want highly-qualified recruits. Ivo forwarded the message to another friend, who sent it on again. But after a teacher saw the text and showed it to the police, Ivo and his two friends were arrested in late 2014.
A draconian anti-terrorism law was used to charge them with several offences, including attempting to organise a rebellion. In late 2016 Fomusoh Ivo Feh, and his friends Afuh Nivelle Nfor and Azah Levis Gob, were convicted of ‘non-denunciation of terrorist acts’ and sentenced to 10 years imprisonment. As documented by Amnesty International, legal proceedings involving “acts of terrorism” in Cameroonian military courts fail to meet international fair trial standards. Many of those who have been brought to court under suspicion of supporting Boko Haram have faced unfair trials in which the burden of proof is often reversed and people are convicted on the basis of limited and unverifiable evidence. Trials of civilians before military courts also raise a number of concerns about independence, impartiality and guarantees of fair trial rights.   You can write or email via AI USA –   http://write.amnestyusa.org/cases/fomusoh-ivo-feh/

Ali Aarrass

Ali Aarrass

Ali Aarrass

Ali Aarrass, a Belgian national, is now six years into his 12-year prison sentence in Morocco following a grossly unfair trial that saw him convicted for allegedly participating in and procuring arms for a criminal group known as the “Belliraj network”; charges Ali Aarrass denies. The court relied on a “confession” which he said was obtained through torture. On 28 April, the Moroccan Court of Cassation rejected his appeal and confirmed his conviction and 12-year prison sentence. The Working Group of Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) considers the conviction to be arbitrary as it is based on “confessions” obtained under torture, and has called for his release and adequate compensation.

The action page from AI Ireland has, unfortunately been recently taken down. The Urgent Action from AIUK is no longer current.  https://www.facebook.com/Ali.Aarrass/

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