Good News for June 2014

Nabeel Rajab - Bahrain

This human rights activist has been freed after serving 2 years in prison for his involvement in 'illegal' protests.

He heads the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, and was convicted in 2012 of taking part in illegal gatherings and disturbing public order. He was one of several activists arrested by the authorities after pro-democracy protests erupted in 2011.

 

Arms Trade Treaty

Rapid progress has been made this year since the global Arms Trade Treaty opened for signature at the United Nations in New York. A surge of further ratifications will soon activate the treaty this year, helping save millions of lives and protect human rights, say Amnesty International, as it marked the anniversary of the treaty signed on 3/6/2013.

Having already been signed by 118 states, it will become legally-binding international law shortly after 50 countries ratify. 32 states have already done so. At least 1/2 million people die each year on average as a result of armed violence and conflict, with millions more displaced and abused.

 

Erwin Sperisen - Guatemala

The conviction of Guatemala's former National Director of Police for a number of murders, is a very significant step forward in the fight against impunity that has plagued Guatemala in the past, says AI.

He was found guilty by a Swiss court of the murders of 7 men, and sentenced to life imprisonment, though the decision can be appealed. He was involved in the murders during a police raid of the El Pavon prison in 2006 and found to have directly committed one of these murders. AI's Guatemala researcher commented that this is a wake-up call for those trying to hide their crimes behind positions of authority.

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