Iran: Protest the closure of Zanan women's magazine

Zanan Magazine, a reform-minded feminist magazine has been active in promoting women's rights for the last 16 years. Authorities revoked its license and friends in Tehran worry there will be no avenue for appeal. Read the petition and sign on!
Source: 
WLUML networkers
Action needed: 
To show your support and add your name to the list, please send your name, title and affiliations to: zananmagazine@yahoo.com

Iran: Stop the Stoning to Death of Zohreh and Azar Kabiri!

The Women Living Under Muslim Laws international solidarity network, and the Global Campaign Stop Killing and Stoning Women! urges all concerned citizens to immediately contact the Iranian officials by phone and/or fax to request them to stop the scheduled stoning to death of Zohreh and Azar Kabiri in Iran.
Source: 
WLUML networkers
Action needed: 
We urge you to immediately contact the Iranian authorities and the embassies of Iran in your home country, via telephone, email, post and/or fax.

***Please copy wluml@wluml.org on all emails you send in response to this Call for Action. If you send a fax or letter, please fax us a copy at +44 (0) 207 561 9882.***

SAMPLE LETTER

Your Excellency,

I/we urge you to immediately cancel the execution of Zohreh and Azar Kabiri, two sisters from Khademabad, Iran who have been sentenced to death by stoning for adultery, in the name of Islam. We are concerned that such an unacceptable and inhumane punishment is being applied to women who have already had the sentence of 99 lashes imposed and executed and have been denied a fair and transparent trial.

I am / we are gravely concerned that Zohreh and Azar have been sentenced to death for adultery. In Iran, women are punished more harshly than men for having committed adultery; this however directly contravenes article 26 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which provides that “[a]ll persons are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to the equal protection of the law.” In a speech delivered on 21 June, 2006 President Ahmadinejad stated that “the country should be built upon the basis of justice, kindness, serving the people, progress and lofty goals.” If Zohreh and Azar are executed, although punishment has already been carried out, then justice will certainly not have been served.

Furthermore, as a state party to the ICCPR, Iran has made an explicit and unreserved commitment under article 6(2) that if the death sentence is imposed it is to be “only for the most serious crimes.” The UN Human Rights Committee (in the case of Toonen v Australia) has made it clear that treating adultery and fornication as criminal offences does not comply with international human rights standards. Therefore the sentence of execution by stoning imposed on Zohreh and Azar Kabari breaches Iran’s commitments under the ICCPR.

We request that you stop the planned executions and take immediate action to remove death by stoning from the legal system.

Yours sincerely,

____________

Addresses: 
The Supreme Leader: Ayatollah Khamenei
Tel: +98 21 64412020
Fax: +98 251 7774 2228
His Excellency Ayatollah Sayed 'Ali Khamenei, The Office of the Supreme Leader
Shoahada Street, Qom, Islamic Republic of Iran
Email: info@leader.ir / istiftaa@wilayah.org / webmaster@wilayah.org
Salutation: Your Excellency

The Head of Judiciary: Ayatollah Shahroudi
Tel: +98-21 22741002
+98-21 22741003
+98-21 22741004
+98-21 22741005
Fax: + 98 21 3390 4986
His Excellency Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi
Ministry of Justice, Park-e Shahr, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
irjpr@iranjudiciary.com and info@dadgostary-tehran.ir
Salutation: Your Excellency

The President: Mr. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Tel: +98 21 88825071
+98 21 88825072
+98 21 88825073
+98 21 88825074
+98 21 88825075
Fax: Via foreign affairs: +98 21 6 674 790 and ask to be forwarded to His Excellency Ahmadinejad
The Presidency
Palestine Avenue, Azerbaijan Intersection,
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Email: dr-ahmadinejad@president.ir
Salutation: His Excellency

Please note that you may have difficulty contacting the officials inside Iran. Please also contact the Iranian officials in your country of residence, for whom some telephone and fax numbers are listed below:

United States:
Interests Section of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Washington, D.C. Tel: +(202) 965-4990; (202) 965-4991; (202) 965-4992; (202) 965-4993; (202) 965-4994; (202) 965-4999
Fax: (202) 965-1073; (202) 965-4990

Canada: Embassy of Iran in Ottawa
Tel: (613) 232-5712

United Kingdom: Embassy of Iran in London
Tel: 0207-225-3000
Fax: 0207-589-4440

Switzerland: Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations in Switzerland, Geneva
Tel: (41-22)332 21 00-21
Fax: (41-22)733 02 03

United Arab Emirates: Embassy of Iran in Abu Dhabi
Tel: +9712-4447618
Fax: +9712-4448714

Denmark: Embassy of Iran in Copenhagen
Tel: 3916-0003
Fax: 3916-0075

Norway: Embassy of Iran in Oslo
Tel: (+47) 23 27 29 60
Fax: (+47) 22 55 49 19

Russia: Embassy of Iran in Moscow
Tel: 9178655; 9179679; 9175219; 9177282; 9170039; 9172442; 9178959
Fax: 2302897; 9179683

Finland: Embassy of Iran
Tel: +358-9-6869 240
Fax: +358-9-6869 2410

South Africa: Embassy of Iran
Tel: +27 (012) 342 58 80 / 1
Fax: +27 (012) 342 18 78

Germany: Embassy of Iran in Frankfurt
Tel: +49 (0) 69 56 000 739 - 740
Fax: +49 (0) 69 56 000 728
Email: iran.botschaft@t-online.de, info@irangk.de, info@igk-hamburg.de.

India: Embassy of Iran in New Delhi
Tel: +91-11-23329600/ 01 / 02
Fax: +91-11-23325493

Embassy of Iran in Brussels
15a avenue Franklin Roosevelt
1050 Brussels, Belgium
Fax: + 32 2 762 39 15
Email: iran-embassy@yahoo.com and secretariat@iranembassy.be

Nicaragua: Legal attacks and harassment of women's human rights defenders

An open letter from Nicaraguan feminists calling for letters of support from regional and international groups:
Source: 
Women’s Autonomous Movement of Nicaragua / Campaign 28
Action needed: 
Sample Letter:

Dear friends,

We are deeply concerned to learn that legal suits have been filed against the following nine women by a right-wing group called the Nicaraguan National Association for Human Rights (ANPDH) (Organizacion Nicaraguence por los Derechos Humanos) and threatened with prison sentences for defending women’s human rights:

· Ana Maria Pizarro, member of the regional coordination of Campaign 28
· Juanita Jiménez, until recently head of "Incidencia de la Red de Mujeres contra la Violencia" [Network of Women Against Violence]
· Lorna Norori, psychologist
· Luisa Molina Arguello, voice of the Federation of NGOs working with children and adolescents
· Martha Maria Blandón, from the Sexuality, Maternity and Rights Forum and also from IPAS Centroamérica
· Martha Munguia, director of the "Centro de Mujeres Acción Ya"
· Mayra Sirias, voice of the Women's Network Against Violence and a member of its coordination committee
· Violeta Delgado, former executive secretary of the Women's Network Against Violence
· Yamileth Mejia, until recently head of Formación Política de la Red de Mujeres contra la Violencia

We are concerned that this legal action has been undertaken as a politically-motivated retaliation against these human rights defenders for their involvement in the case of Zoilamérica Narváez and other victims of rape and sexual violence. The curtailment of civil society activities is unacceptable in a democratic republic. Women and their organizations have faced particular exploitation since the criminalization of abortion - even under extenuating medical circumstances - in November 2006. The force of law must not be used to restrict the full realization of women’s universal rights to health, justice and freedom from all forms of violence. We are gravely disturbed by this attempt to silence the critical voices for democracy and peace of leaders of the Nicaraguan women's movement as they bring to light so-called “private” crimes of incest, rape and sexual abuse, especially when they implicate key leaders in government.

We strongly condemns these acts of repression and persecution against women’s human rights defenders in Nicaragua and expresses its solidarity with the Autonomous Women’s Movement of Nicaragua, the ‘Campaign 28 of September’, and all women’s rights defenders.

In solidarity,

____________

UPDATE: Saudi Arabia: Rape victim pardoned by Saudi King

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah has pardoned a female rape victim who had been sentenced to 200 lashes for being alone with a man at the time of the attack who was not related to her. Saudi Justice Minister Abdullah bin Muhammed al-Sheik told al-Jazirah newspaper that the pardon does not mean the king doubted the country's judges, but instead acted in the ''interests of the people.''
Source: 
AP / New York Times

Saudi Arabia: Protest the Sentencing of Gang-Rape Victim to 200 Lashes

A judge in Saudi Arabia has ordered a victim of gang rape to receive 200 lashes - more than double her original sentence for being alone with a man who was not a relative - after she appealed against the lenient sentences given to the men who attacked her.
Source: 
Amnesty / WLUML
Action needed: 
Please send appeals to arrive as quickly as possible, in Arabic or English or your own language:

-expressing grave concern that the woman known as "The Girl from al-Qatif" and her male companion are at risk of being flogged;

- calling on the authorities to halt the floggings immediately, as the use of corporal punishment constitutes cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment, in violation of Saudi Arabia's obligations as a state party to the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT), and Article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states: ''No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment";

- calling on the authorities to declare the sentence of Khilwa against the woman and her companion null and void as it contravenes international human rights standards, in particular the right to privacy;

- expressing particular concern that the woman has been sentenced to flogging after having been gang raped, and that her physical and psychological suffering has been exacerbated by her trial and the sentence of 200 lashes;

- urging that she be afforded all necessary assistance, including appropriate medical attention

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Sample Letter:

[Date]

We are alarmed and deeply concerned to learn of the incomprehensible ruling by a Sharia court that has sentenced the woman known as “the girl from Al Qatif” who is a victim of multiple rape to 200 lashes and a 6-month prison term. We are gravely concerned about the injustice of such a sentence for a woman was gang raped. We are shocked that, instead of responding to her physical and psychological suffering, the court has exacerbated her suffering through her trial and this outrageous sentence. Her male companion has also been sentenced to flogging and imprisonment.

These sentences contravene Saudi Arabia's obligations as a state party to the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT). It also contravenes Article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states: ''No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.” We call on your Majesty to immediately prevent such injustice from taking place. We urge that you ensure that the woman be afforded all necessary assistance, including appropriate medical attention.

We urge you to declare the sentence of Khilwa against the woman and her companion null and void as it contravenes any sense of Islamic justice as well as international human rights standards, in particular the right to privacy.

Yours sincerely,

[Your name / Organization's name]

Addresses: 
ADDRESSES

King Abdullah Bin ‘Abdul ‘Aziz Al-Saud
The Custodian of the two Holy Mosques
Office of His Majesty the King
Royal Court, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Fax: (via Ministry of the Interior) +966 1 403 1185
Salutation: Your Majesty

His Royal Highness Prince Naif bin ‘Abdul ‘Aziz Al-Saud
Minister of the Interior
Ministry of the Interior
P.O. Box 2933
Airport Road, Riyadh 11134
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Fax: +966 1 403 1185
Salutation: Your Royal Highness

His Royal Highness Prince Saud al-Faisal bin ‘Abdul ‘Aziz Al-Saud
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Nasseriya Street
Riyadh 11124
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Fax: +966 1 403 0645
Salutation: Your Royal Highness

Mr Turki bin Khaled Al-Sudairy
President
Human Rights Commission
PO Box 58889, Riyadh 11515
King Fahad Road, Building No.373
Riyadh
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Fax: +966 1 4612061
Salutation: Dear Sir

and to diplomatic representatives of Saudi Arabia accredited to your country.

Please note that it is sometimes difficult to send a fax to Saudi Arabia at this time. If you cannot transmit a fax, please mail a letter.

UPDATE: Pakistan: Protest against the state of emergency in Pakistan and brutal attacks on civil society

"General Pervez Musharraf declared a state of emergency in Pakistan on Saturday November 3, 2007 and imposed the Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO) that suspends the Constitution and the fundamental rights of citizens, gags the media and forbids any form of dissent. This has drastically upset the already frail political setup prevalent in the country.
Source: 
Shirkat Gah

UPDATE: Iran: Delaram Ali's Sentence Temporarily Suspended

The lawyer of Delaram Ali, a women's rights defender arrested at a peaceful demonstration last year, says Iran's judiciary has temporarily suspended her sentence.
Source: 
RFE/RL

Iran: Human Rights Groups Protest imminent imprisonment of Delaram Ali

Seven leading international human rights organizations today demanded that the Iranian authorities immediately set aside the prison sentence against a women’s rights defender, and drop charges against others facing trial because of their peaceful activities demanding equal rights for women in Iran.
Source: 
WLUML/Amnesty International

UPDATE: Pakistan: Letter to UN Special Rapporteurs Urging Action Against Martial Law

WLUML's letter to UN Special Rapporteurs and UN Human Rights Bodies expresses our alarm and grave concern regarding the mass arrests, ill-treatment and flagrant violations of the human rights of members of the judiciary, the legal profession and civil society that is currently taking place in Pakistan. We urge them to appeal to General Musharraf to restore the constitution, the judiciary, the media, and to end all arrests and violence against peaceful protests.
Source: 
WLUML
Action needed: 
09 November, 2007

Dear _________,

Re: Arrest, Detention and Ill-Treatment of Hundreds in Pakistan

We extend our greetings to you on behalf of Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML). WLUML is an international solidarity network that provides information, support and a collective space for women whose lives are shaped, conditioned or governed by laws and customs said to derive from Islam. Its network of organisations and individuals extends to more than 70 countries ranging from South Africa to Uzbekistan, Senegal to Indonesia and Brazil to France.

We write to express our alarm and grave concern regarding the mass arrests, ill-treatment and flagrant violations of the human rights of members of the judiciary, the legal profession and civil society that is currently taking place in Pakistan. Since General Pervaiz Musharraf’s imposition of emergency rule on 3 November 2007 there have been daily reports of judges, lawyers, activists, opposition figures and general citizens being arbitrarily and, we believe, unlawfully detained under provisions that allow detention without charge or trial, held incommunicado and at risk of maltreatment, and even torture, by government security forces.

We are aware that all constitutional safeguards, including guarantees on life and liberty, have been suspended. In addition, the Chief Justice has been summarily dismissed for opposing the emergency order, private news channels have been curtailed and restrictions have been imposed on the print and electronic media. It is unacceptable that all this is occurring in the name of national security when actions indicate this is a ploy on General Musharraf’s part to illegitimately retain political power.

We urge you, along with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the other human rights experts:

• To send an urgent appeal to General Musharraf and the authorities in Pakistan requesting:

1. The immediate restoration of, renewed respect for and protection of human rights guaranteed under the Constitution and in keeping with the universal human rights standards;

2. Restoration of the judiciary to its full constitution and the rule of law;

3. Lifting of restrictions on the media;

4. The immediate cessation of all violence against peaceful demonstrations and an end to all arbitrary arrests and detentions;

5. The immediate release of all the judges, lawyers, activists, opposition figures and general citizens who have been arbitrarily detained under preventive detention measures or detained for exercising their basic human rights to freedom of expression, association and assembly, and the withdrawal of all charges against them;

6. The restoration of the Chief Justice of Pakistan, the Supreme Court and all judges arbitrarily dismissed on and after 3 November 2007;

7. The early lifting of all restrictions on the media and freedom to information, the ban on freedom of expression and assembly and the emergency decree itself; and

8. Dialogue with the opposition, civil society organisations and other concerned parties about steps that can be taken to restore a peaceful and sustainable constitutional democracy through free and fair elections.

• To request a visit to Pakistan to investigate the human rights situation on the ground and make recommendations for renewed respect for constitutional and universal human rights and the restoration of constitutional rule.

• To call upon the United Nations Human Rights Council and the United Nations Security Council to issue resolutions on the human rights violations which are currently taking place in Pakistan and the need to restore constitutional democracy and respect for human rights.

• To publicly express your concern over, and condemnation of, the actions of the Government of Pakistan by immediately issuing a Press Statement to this effect.

Thank you as always for your tireless efforts to fight for and support the human rights of all people.

Sincerely yours,

Women Living Under Muslim Laws international solidarity network and the Malaysian Bar Council Human Rights Committee

Addresses: 
You can send a similar letter to the UN Special Rapporteurs and Human Rights bodies at the following addresses:

Ms. Louise Arbour
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Working Group on Arbitrary Detention
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Ms. Hina Jilani
Special Representative of the Secretary General for Human Rights Defenders
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Mr. Ambeyi Ligabo
Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Mr. Leandro Despouy
Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Mr. Rudi Muhammad Rizki
Independent Expert on Human Rights and International Solidarity
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Mr. Martin Scheinin
Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights While Countering Terrorism
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Mr. Manfred Nowak
Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Ms. Yakin Erturk
Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women, Its Causes and Consequences
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Mr. Philip Alston
Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Mr. Paul Hunt
Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on the Right of Everyone to the Enjoyment of the Highest Attainable Standard of Physical and Mental Health
Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland
urgent-action@ohchr.org
Fax: +41 22 917 9006

Pakistan: Imposition of Martial Law - Arrests and detention of civilian activists and lawyers

Pakistan imposed a state of emergency in Pakistan on 3rd of November that has suspended the Constitution and has replaced superior courts in a move that could put the country's political future into disarray.
Source: 
Shirkat Gah
Action needed: 
Please publicize as widely as possible, notably to international press and human rights organizations. Linkages are needed to take this matter to the International Court of Justice and other UN mechanisms.
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