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Weekly Action and News 06/05/2022

Manchester Amnesty Weekly Action and News 


Please do these actions and make a difference.  


ACTION 1. Turkey: Free the Gezi defendants ***URGENT action by 1 June please***

On 25 April, civil society leader Osman Kavala who has been imprisoned on pretrial detention since November 2017, was convicted for “attempting to overthrow the government” and sentenced to aggravated life in prison; his seven co-defendants each received a sentence of 18 years, allegedly for aiding Osman Kavala and were immediately remanded in prison. Amnesty International calls on the Chief Prosecutor for the Istanbul Regional Appeals Court to support and not to oppose any application or request of Osman Kavala, Mücella Yapıcı, Çiğdem Mater, Mine Özerden, Can Atalay, Tayfun Kahraman, and Hakan Altınay all currently in prison while they appeal their unjust convictions. Please write in support of Amnesty’s demands. More information here





ACTION 2 Stop destructive silver mining projects now


This is a petition by the campaigning organisation SumOfUS which calls on Pan American Silver and the Governments of Argentina and Guatemala to halt plans for a new silver mine and to respect the rights of indigenous communities, who have not been consulted and whose lands are at risk. The action is linked to an urgent action featured by Amnesty last year (now closed). Click the link for more information on the issues involved.






Manchester Amnesty's next  group meeting: Monday May 9th, 7pm, online


  • What is the Human Rights Act?
  • What is the difference between the Human Rights Act and the European Convention on Human Rights?
  • What is the wider legal basis for protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the UK?
  • What have human rights ever done for us?


At our next online group meeting on Monday 9th May at 7pm, Amnesty International UK’s (AIUK’s) Tom Southerden will help us make sense of recent developments and alarming Government proposals which could potentially dilute human rights protection in the UK. All welcome. Join the fightback!

Look out for email with zoom link and agenda.



Craftivism and Refugee groups joint meeting 8th May – all welcome!


Sunday 8th May, 2-4pm at Manchester City Art Gallery, in the Studio Room.
We are making orange hearts to use for Refugee week and a city walk later in the year. 
All equipment will be available and we are just hand sewing. No experience needed.
Please bring along any scraps of patterned or plain orange fabric (e.g old clothes) that you can donate.

Save the date!


Our next Manchester Amnesty letter writing session will take place at Manchester Central Library 2-4pm on 28th May. More details to follow nearer the time.


Volunteers needed to help run a Manchester Amnesty stall focusing on environmental rights at a sustainability conference at Manchester Metropolitan University on 17th June. More details to follow.





Freedom from Torture (Manchester support group): Sponsored Litter Pick: ***tomorrow***, Saturday 7th May on Wilmslow Road in Fallowfield, 11am-3pm.


Manchester Climate Justice Summit, 15th May, 12-5pm, Manchester University Students Union, Oxford Road. Organised by Manchester Cop26 and the Campaign against Climate Change Trade Union group. More details and sign up here: 



Subscriptions please!


We ask our members to pay a small voluntary contribution towards the running of the group. Among other things, our funds go towards supporting our campaigning activities, buying the zoom licence for our meetings, and making a donation to organisations which kindly provide speakers for our meetings. We do not have a large reserve, so are appealing to members to make a donation towards supporting our 2022 activities. We suggest £20 for people who receive a wage or a pension and £5 (or whatever you can afford) for others. Please contact our Treasurer or make a donation directly into our bank account: Manchester Amnesty Group, 68177527, 05-05-73.


Manchester Amnesty Subgroups and other work


If you would like to join any of our subgroups, please contact the current convenors. 

UAE – Kathryn Fletcher, next meeting 30th May, 6.30pm, Zoom

HR in UK – Matthew Sherwood,, next meeting TBA. 

Anti-racism – Hazel Errey,, next meeting 16th May, 6.30pm, Zoom 

Refugees – Alison Wearden,, next meeting 8th May (joint with craftivism) 

Craftivism - Kathryn Fletcher  next meeting 8th May, 2pm, Manchester Art Gallery


Other areas of work are led by:

Crisis and Tactical Afghanistan, Myanmar, Syria, Ukraine, Yemen..., Rebecca Shaw,

Europe/ Turkey, Fateh Segmen,


We welcome back Mike Reed who will be leading work relating to Amnesty’s new campaign on Israel's Apartheid Against Palestinians.


Good news 


There are two items of good news from the USA this week. The first relates to a case that was our weekly action on the 8th April this year. On 25th April, recognising that there were serious doubts about her original conviction for the murder of her child, the Texas Court of Appeal indefinitely suspended the execution of Melissa Lucio, which had been scheduled to take place on 27th April. Amnesty thanks all those who took action on Melissa’s behalf. Read more about the case here


And in the second case from the USA, Amnesty report that the human rights lawyer and activist, Steven Donziger, who has been arbitrarily detained for almost 1000 days after he won a case against the oil company Chevron, is about to be released. Amnesty emphasise that while this is great news, there is more work that needs to be done to prevent the future detention and harassment of others who criticise powerful interest groups. In particular, Amnesty is campaigning for the end of “strategic lawsuits against public participation” (SLAPP cases) which are used to silence and intimidate activists. Read more here about Steven Donziger’s work exposing Chevron’s illegal dumping of billions of gallons of toxic waste in Ecuador, and more about SLAPP cases here.


Alison Wearden 

Communications Secretary 

Manchester Group of Amnesty International 

Please contact me with items for our Weekly Action and News email, or with ideas for longer articles for the quarterly Manchester Amnesty Group Bulletin.


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