The displays of solidarity, action and impact from Amnesty International activists in honor of the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture will amaze you.
Protests in more than 80 countries, with numbers ranging from a couple hundred to several thousand, took to the streets on Saturday to stand in solidarity with the Iranian people against the government’s brutal crackdown this summer. Among the 1,000 people in Amsterdam was Iran’s Nobel Peace laureate Shirin Ebadi who led the crowd in chanting: “We want to live in peace. Long live peace”.
“Our message is very simple,” [Aaron Rhodes, an event organizer] said. “We’re supporting civil and human rights in Iran and we’re calling upon the government in Iran to cease their abuse of power, cease the imprisonment of innocent people and the torture of detainees and stop the violence against people who are simply trying to exercise their internationally protected human right to peacefully protest.”
Back in Tehran, opposition leaders Mousavi, Mehdi Karroubi and Khatami urged the country’s clerics to intervene to help stop the spread of “oppression” by the authorities. They accused the government of “savagery” and that its “interrogation methods are a reminder of the dark era of the Shah”, who ruled until 1979.
Below are some videos from the various rallies across the world:
Samah Choudhury contributed to this post
On July 25, people in more than 60 cities across the world will be standing in solidarity with the Iranian people in their struggle for human rights. Protesters in Iran continue to experience brutality on the city streets while the number of arrests steadily rises– the latest being the detainment of opposition leader Mir Hussein Mousavi’s brother-in-law, Shapour Kazemi.
The global day of action, organized by United4Iran, is organized around the following four core demands:
- That member states and civil society organizations of the international community give sustained attention to the Iranian people’s human rights as a matter of international concern, and that the UN should immediately initiate an investigation into grave and systematic human rights violations in Iran, including the fate of prisoners and disappeared persons, unlawful killings, and torture and other ill-treatment;
- An end to state-sponsored violence, accountability for crimes committed and no recourse to the death penalty.
- The immediate and unconditional release of all prisoners of conscience, including politicians, journalists, students, and civil society activists; and
- Freedom of assembly, freedom of association, and freedom of expression (including freedom of the press) as guaranteed by the Iranian constitution and Iran’s obligations under international covenants that it has signed.
Supporters include Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Shirin Ebadi, Sean Penn, Dariush, Jody Williams, Betty Williams, Mairead Maguire, Adolfo Perez Esquivel, Rigoberta Menchu Tum, Simin Behbahani, Reza Aslan and Ismael Khoi. Dariush will actually be performing at the rally in DC!
Attend an event near you! Visit united4iran.org for a complete listing.
Speaker: Roxana Saberi
Time: July 25, 12 noon
Place: Federal Plaza, Dearborn and Adams
Rally time: Noon
Rally location: Federal Plaza at Dearborn and Adams Street in downtown Chicago
More information: Facebook or contact [email protected]
Part one: Demonstration @ UN Office
Start at 4:00pm, corner of 18th+K. We have requested road closure from DCDOT. Signs, slogans, use of bullhorns.
Part two: March to Rally
March starts at 5:15pm, East on K st one block, South on 17th st (march past WH w/o stopping), Enter Constitutional Gardens at 17th + Constitution St.
Part three: Rally at National Mall Constitution Gardens (on 19th + Constitution)
Jody Williams, Nobel Laureate
Mehrangiz Kar, Human Rights Lawyer
Joe Stork, Human Rights Watch, Deputy Director of Middle East and North Africa Division
Parisa Saeb, Human Rights Activist
Dariush, Prominent Iranian Singer and Social Activist
For more information, contact [email protected]
Samah Choudhury contributed to this post
Today is the Global Day of Action for Troy Davis. Over 150 events in 45 state, DC, Puerto Rico, and 28 countries overseas have been scheduled, demonstrating as clearly as can be demonstrated that the public will not stand for the execution of a man who has had no hearing on evidence that he may be innocent. The failure of our courts to take seriously questions of innocence is of course not limited to Troy Davis’ case, but his case is so simple – 7 of 9 witnesses have recanted their trial testimony – and the solution so obvious – an evidentiary hearing featuring said witnesses – that it is in equal parts baffling, frustrating and outrageous that Troy Davis may be once again on the brink of another execution date.
A hearing to examine and cross-examine these witnesses should not be too much to ask.
Today, a last ditch effort with the Supreme Court will be filed, but it has become clear that our courts and politicians have a supremely bureaucratic mentality towards justice; they will only take action or exercise leadership if they know they are being watched. That is why it is so important that so many people are coming out today, to be seen and heard. And why it is so important that we continue to do so.