Amnesty Greetings Card Campaign
Every year the Amnesty Greetings Card Campaign provides anopportunity for people to show solidarity with others who are in dangeror unjustly imprisoned around the world. This year's campaign hasidentified 32 individual, groups and communities that need our support andamongst these there are a number of cases which relate to children's humanrights:
Patrick Okoroafor was arrested and charged with robbery in May 1995,when he was just 14 years old. Patrick was tortured after his arrestand no lawyer or member of his family was present during hisinterrogation. He was convicted of robbery when he was 16, after anunfair trial before a military tribunal. Patrick was originallysentenced to death, but this was then changed to indefinite detention,and in 2009 reduced to 10 years' imprisonment, starting immediately.Patrick remains in prison and by the time of his release will havespent 24 years in prison for a crime he did not commit.
Ernestina and Erlinda Serrano Cruz
The Salvadoran army captured sisters Ernistina and Erlinda SerranoCriz (aged just 7 and 3) on 2nd June 1982, during the internal armedconflct in the country. They have been missing ever since. Their familyhave been actively pursuing justice for the last 28 years, but stillthere is no news.
The new administration in El Salvador has made some importantcommitments to addressing the disappearance of over 700 children duringthe implementation of those commitments.
Billions of dollars of oil and gas have been taken from the land ofthe Lubicon Cree First Nation, an indigenous community of about 500people, without their consent and almost wiping out their traditionaleconomy and way of life.
The Lubicon have reported pervasive health and socal problemsassociated with poverty and young people face limited opportunities anda struggle to maintain their ties to the culture and way of life oftheir elders.
Despite 20 years of condemnation by United Nations human rightsbodies, the rights of the Lubicon are still not recognised orprotected.
On 7th October 2007, 17 year old Ferhat Gerҫek was shot in the backby police and paralysed, following a dispute over the sale of apolitical magazine. Seven police officers face trial but have not beensuspended from duty and flaws in the police investigation may mean thatthe perpetrator evades justice. In cases of ill-treatment, torture orunlawful killing by the police in Turkey, it can often be difficult forvictims or relatives to secure justice.
Ferhat himself is also on trial as a result of the incident, withcharges including 'criminal damage' and could face a sentence of up to15 years imprisonment.
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