By Naureen Shah, Advocacy Adviser at Amnesty International USA
Today, filmmaker Brave New Foundation released this virtual legal debate on drone strikes, featuring Amnesty International USA and other leading human rights and civil rights organizations. Brave New Foundation’s full documentary on drone strikes will be released October 30. The virtual legal debate shows that too often, the U.S. government’s rhetoric has not matched the reality of U.S. policies and practices that treat the world as a global battlefield.
The last month has seen an escalation in drone strikes more dramatic than any since 2009. Media estimate that about 40 people have died in a series of strikes in Yemen, and nearly all of their identities are at this time unknown.
The increase in strikes is a bleak reminder that despite President Obama’s recent pledges to make the drone program more transparent, it remains fundamentally secretive and unaccountable to the public. Moreover, publicly available information still indicates that the U.S. government’s policy appears to permit extrajudicial executions, in violation of international human rights law, virtually anywhere in the world.
Together, we can prevent this injustice. Take action and urge President Obama and Congress to follow Amnesty International’s 5 Point Plan to prevent extrajudicial executions.