Amnesty International welcomes the release from prison on January 23 of Zmitser Dashkevich, leader of a youth organization that advocates political freedom in Belarus. AI mounted a global campaign to win his release featuring his case in a Global Write-a-thon in December through which thousands of people across the United States appealed for his release. As one of Amnesty International USA's Special Focus Cases, Zmitser Dashkevich's case was a particular focus for action by Amnesty student activists, who joined youth activists around the world in sending 10,000 origami cranes to Belarusian authorities in a symbolic plea for freedom for Mr. Dashkevich and other prisoners of conscience.
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Urgent Action Update: Activist Sentenced To 10 Years For Graffiti Protest (Azerbaijan: UA 114/16)
Azerbaijani youth activist Bayram Mammadov was sentenced to 10 years in prison on 8 December for a graffiti protest. Fellow activist Giyas Ibrahimov was also sentenced to 10 years in prison on 25 October. They are prisoners of conscience and should be released immediately.
Amnesty International is concerned about the fairness of proceedings leading to the trial and conviction of Leonard Peltier, an Anishinabe-Lakota Native American who was convicted of murdering two FBI agents.
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