REDRESS is joining Human Rights Watch Film Festival, which commenced March 18, to present Patricio Henriquez’s film: "Uyghurs, prisoners of the absurd". The film recounts the journey of 22 members of China’s Uyghur minority who having fled repressive authorities in Beijing, happen to be in Afghanistan during October 2001 as US-led forces invade Afghanistan in search of Osama Bin Laden.
From here they are drawn into an unbelievable odyssey. Sold to US forces, they are illegally detained at Guantánamo for years. Focusing on three of these “survivors of the absurd”, the film guides the viewer through the labyrinth of contemporary geopolitics as the filmmaker lays bare the worrisome drifts in the the fight against terrorism.
The UK premiere of "Uyghurs, prisoners of the absurd" will take place on Sunday 22 March 18.00 at Curzon Soho and Tuesday 24 March 18.15 at Ritzy Brixton, followed by a Q & A with filmmaker as part of Human Rights Watch Film Festival.
Check out our new handbook for torture survivors compiled through the experience of torture survivors in the UK and expert input. It contains useful information for torture survivors, their families and friends, community members, and front-line service providers and advisors who work closely with survivors. In it, you can find information on how to access medical and psychological rehabilitation and care to address the physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing of torture survivors. It details the steps needed when regularising a victim’s immigration status or applying for asylum and seeking advice on social welfare, employment, or education. Information on victims’ right to justice, reparation, and accountability for what they experienced is also provided as well as information on resources where survivors can seek further support and assistance.
Our new handbook aims to serve as a guide for victims of serious international crimes (genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, torture and enforced disappearance) who are interested in filing a formal complaint within the EU as well as victims who are already seeking justice through EU courts. It may may also be useful for victims that are seeking asylum as well as individuals living in another country outside the EU, but have information or evidence which suggests that those responsible for what happened are inside the EU.
Iran: complaint to UN experts on behalf of Kurdish rights activist
REDRESS and Justice for Iran have urged the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention to intervene on behalf of a female Kurdish activist who is serving a life sentence in Iran after she was arrested on International Women's Day seven years ago.
Zeinab Jalalian is currently serving a life sentence in Iran, and is in need of urgent medical care having sustained torture. Mrs Jalalian was sentenced to death in 2008 for "enmity against God" (moharebeh) in a trial that lasted a few minutes. She was accused of being a member of the Party for Free Life in Kurdistan (PJAK), an armed opposition group, which she denies, and was convicted despite not having access to a lawyer and the lack of any evidence about her participation in any armed activities. Her death sentence was later commuted to life imprisonment. She says she was tortured in detention.
One of her last activities as an activist was giving a speech about the importance of women’s rights and International Women’s Day at an Iranian girls school.
On 5 March 2015, REDRESS urged the UN experts to call on Iran to grant her a new trial that complies with international standards, including disregarding any evidence obtained under torture or ill-treatment; to ensure that she is protected from further torture and ill-treatment and that she receives the urgent medical care that she needs.
Sudan: intervention on behalf of human rights lawyer who assisted students
On 20 February 2015, REDRESS and other rights groups filed a complaint on behalf of of Abdel Moneem Adam Mohammed, a human rights lawyer who was arrested in March last year after providing legal aid to students who had been arrested and detained after demonstrations at Khartoum University. He was detained from 11 March until 8 April 2014, most of the time incommunicado.
REDRESS, the African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies (ACJPS) and the East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project (EHAHRDP) are urging the Commission to examine allegations that Sudan violated several of his rights under the African Charter, including his right to be free from torture and ill-treatment, right to liberty and security, and right of freedom of expression.
Iran: complaint to the UN on behalf of man targeted for his sexual orientation
REDRESS has filed a complaint to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Iran on behalf of an Iranian man who suffered multiple violations of his rights, including being subjected to torture and ill-treatment, in the context of the systematic discrimination and lack of protection of LGBTI people in Iran.
The victim, currently a refugee in the UK, was arrested and detained on several occasions in Iran, as a result of engaging in homosexual sex. In detention, he was subjected to severe beatings, interrogations and verbal abuse and held in solitary confinement. In 2009, he was arrested after attending a party and convicted in court of "facilitating immorality", as well as for possessing and drinking alcohol, and sentenced to eighty lashes. He was also given seventy lashes after another arrest.
REDRESS has requested the Special Rapporteur to urge Iran to comply with its obligations under international law, including initiating a prompt, impartial and effective investigation into the events; provide adequate compensation to the victim; annul his conviction and expunge his criminal record, and undertake a thorough review of its legislation to bring the domestic laws in line with Iran's obligations under international law.