Detained Student Activist Released!
Rayees Ahmad Mir and Waheed Ahmed Gojree have been released after the Jammu and Kashmir High Court quashed their detention orders on 6 and 31 December 2016 respectively. The teenagers were unlawfully detained in prison under the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act (PSA), an administrative detention law that expressly prohibits the detention of anyone under 18 years of age.
Human rights lawyer Emil Kurbedinov was released on 5 February in Simferopol, Crimea, having served 10 days in administrative detention to which he was sentenced as reprisal for his human rights work. Kurbedinov vowed to continue his work.
With less than a week left in his term, former President Barack Obama commuted Chelsea Manning’s sentence on 17 January. While this welcome move was long overdue, the US government must now investigate the potential human rights violations that she exposed.
On 2 December, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals issued a stay of execution to John Battaglia, a 61-year-old man who was scheduled to be executed in Texas on 7 December. The stay is for the Court to be able to review the question of his mental competence.