June 2015 report on Burma & N.Korea

AMNESTY REPORT JUNE 2015

Letterwriting:

  • We signed 28 letters last month and 33 this evening [June 8th]
  • Great news, we wrote letters in July, August and December last year as well as signing 30 cards in Green Park as our anti torture campaign on behalf of Nigerian Moses Akatugba who was to be executed for stealing mobile phones which he admitted under torture he has written to us following his release:  “I am overwhelmed. I thank Amnesty International and their activists for the great support that made me a conqueror in this situation. Amnesty International members and activist are my heroes……”
  • We have also heard from Dr. Tun Aung for whom we campaigned for two years: “I am indebted to Amnesty International for all efforts to campaign for my release. After I was released I found out about all the campaigning Amnesty International and its members did for me. I greatly appreciated it. I found out how many people sent letters and cards and appeals. I can’t believe it, it’s amazing. I think I was released early because everyone was campaigning for me. There was a lot of international pressure on my case…..”
  • I am also pleased to report that we wrote for Willie Manning in December and he has become the 153rd death row prisoner to be exonerated in the US since 1973.
  • In the UAE the Qatari national we wrote on behalf of last Oct YAA al Mullah has been released and deported but the others have been sentenced and we will be writing again tonight.

Burma:

  • Better late than never (excuse my cynicism) it has only taken three years for the media to catch up and report on the plight of the Rohingya from Burma, those being trafficked and dying at sea, the appalling conditions of the camps with torture cages, the mass graves on the Malaysia/Thai border.
  • It has been suggested by some MPs that UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon should take a personal lead in negotiating humanitarian access and address the issues of status and citizenship of the Rohingya.
  • Both the Dalai Lama and Archibishop Tutu have rebuked ASSK for her stand (or lack of) in this matter and for protecting the Buddhist vote in the run-up to the election. However, later in May the NLD performed an apparent U turn after international pressure and called for the country’s persecuted Rohingya Muslim minority to be granted citizenship

North Korea

  • South Korean Kang Gun tried to raise awareness in China of the human rights abuses in NK. No one knows where he is. Please sign the Petition that he should be released unless charged with an internationally recognised criminal offence.
  • It is thought that Defence Minister Hyon Yong Chol has been executed for “sleeping during military events and failing to follow orders.”

Wendy Hughes
Burma & NK Co-Ordinator

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