Urgent Actions for April

Urgent Actions support individuals in immediate danger around the world by flooding the relevant authorities with faxes, emails, telegrams and letters. Please help us if you can.

Here are some of the urgent actions that we have received recently. Each case contains details of how you can help. 


Regular visitors to this site will be aware of the case of Nabeel Rajab, the prominent human rights activist who is now serving a two year sentence for participating in peaceful demonstrations last year. Nabeel Rajab has not been receiving adequate medical care for a herniated disc in his back and suffers severe pain.

Please write to the Bahraini authorities urging for Nabeel Rajab's immediate release and, if this is not possible to grant him access to the medical care he needs and protect him from torture and ill-treatment, see attachment for detals. The deadline for appeals is 4th June 2013


A draft press law which would severely limit the activities of journalists has been adopted by the Burundian Senate and is expected to be promulgated by the President of Burundi shortly.  in its latest form, this law would place undue restrictions on the work of journalists, limiting Burundians’ freedom of expression. Journalists in Burundi have been subjected to harassment, intimidation and arbitrary arrest over recent years. Yet despite this, Burundi still has a vibrant media which serves as an important source of information on a range of issues important to Burundians, including allegations of human rights abuses and corruption. Certain articles create numerous new requirements for journalists to follow in the course of their work.  Failure to do so can result in steep fines.  For example, article 20 restricts the right to report on anything that relates to state and public security, information that threatens the national economy, or insulting the President.

Please write immediately urging the President to reject the draft press law and guarantee freedom of expression in Burundi.  See attachment for details. The deadline for appeals is 5th June 2013


On 3 March the offices of human rights organization Human Rights Integral Defense Committee (Comité de Defensa Integral de Derechos Humanos Gobixha A.C., CODIGO-DH) were found raided. Many of the communities and their leaders have reported being threatened and harassed. Journalists covering the conflict have also been targeted. On 2 April, activist and community leader Mariano López Gómez was arrested by members of the Mexican Army and was accused of extortion. He was released the following day. The arrest happened after a violent confrontation on 26 March between members of Oaxaca State Police and local Indigenous People opposing a natural gas extraction project which is part of the wind farm project. There is also an arrest warrant for journalist Carlos Sánchez López, who works at a local radio station and received minor injuries in his leg and arm while covering the incident on 26 March.        

Please write to the Mexican authorities to urge them to protect all those who oppose the wind farm.

See the download below for details of how you can help. The deadline for appeals is 16 May 2013.


Amara Abdalla al-Khattabi, the editor-in-chief of al-Umma newspaper, was arrested in December a month after his newspaper published a list of 84 judges allegedly involved in corruption. On 1st April his lawyer was barred from representing him and a state lawyer appointed instead. There are also concerns that one of the judges appointed may have a conflict of interest.

Amara Abdalla al-Khattabi, who is 67 years old has been on hunger strike since 28 February 2013, and his wife has also begun a hunger strike in protest against his continued detention.

Amara Abdalla al-Khattabi is detained solely for the peaceful exercise of free expression, and is considered a prisoner of conscience. 

Please write to the Libyan authorities urging them to drop the charges and release him, and let him choose his own lawyer.

The downloads below give more details and a sample letter, this can be forwarded to the AI Libyan Co-ordinator who will forward the letters via the Libyan Embassy in London, see the downloads for details.


Mexico - more details about wind farm activists at risk
Libya - more details about Amara Abdalla al-Khattabi
Libya - sample letter
Burundi - details of draft press law and addresses to contact
Bahrain - more details about Nabeel Rajab's case
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