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New 'Unsubscribe' campaign to combat human rights abuse in 'war on terror' launched in Belfast

A shocking nationwide billboard campaign by Amnesty International hits Northern Ireland today, with its sights set on the ‘War on Terror’.

While most campaigns ask people to sign up, Unsubscribe invites people in Northern Ireland to do just the opposite, by giving them a chance to opt out of human rights abuses inflicted both by terrorism and ‘counter-terrorism’.

The Unsubscribe campaign bursts onto Belfast’s streets with a series of confrontational billboard images of human rights abuses carried out by terrorists and governments alike.

The stark images include a prisoner in Abu Ghraib prison being attacked by a dog, a detainee at the controversial US military camp at Guantánamo Bay, and the aftermath of the Madrid train bombing of 2004.

Each picture bears the straightforward message: “Unsubscribe”.

Patrick Corrigan, Amnesty International Northern Ireland programme director, said:

"Many people will be profoundly shocked by these images of devastation, torture and abuse – and rightly so.

“A huge amount of damage is being done to human rights across the globe in the name of preventing terrorism. But why must we be asked to make a choice between terrorist atrocities, and rampant torture, secret detention, and a host of other abuses?

“That's an obscene choice, and so today we are offering people a third option – to ‘Unsubscribe’ altogether.”

The campaign has already won a raft of support from major organisations, including the Internet phenomenon Bebo.

The social networking site – which earlier this year announced itself to be the most popular website in Ireland – lent it’s support to Unsubscribe, and says it would encourage its more than four million UK members to back the campaign.

Even before the Unsubscribe campaign’s official launch, more than 8000 people had already pledged to reject attacks on human rights, whether by terrorists or governments, revealing the wide-reaching popular appeal of Amnesty’s message.

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