Changing lives and policies

We free people from prison who are being held unjustly because of who they are or what they believe. We change laws to protect millions of people’s human rights. We transform societies to be more fair, free, and just. Here are our victories.

Featured Victory

We recently helped two young children and their mothers who fled violence in their native countries in Central America get released from over 600 days in immigration detention. Three-year-old Diego and eight-year-old “Antonio” have spent much of their childhood behind the walls of a detention center in Berks County, Pennsylvania despite having proven that they and their mothers posed no safety or flight risk while their asylum petitions are reviewed. Two other children and their mothers who have been at Berks for an extended time remain. AIUSA continues to fight for their freedom, and for an end to family detention.

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January 23, 2018 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Lesotho Soldiers Acquitted of Mutiny Charges (Lesotho: 263.15)

A Military Court Martial acquitted 22 Lesotho Defense Force (LDF) Soldiers of mutiny charges, while a High Court had ordered a permanent stay of prosecution for one LDF soldier a month earlier. The 23 soldiers had first been arrested and detained between May and June 2015. They were charged with mutiny in the same year. If convicted they would have faced the death penalty.

January 18, 2018 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Tatar Activist And Prisoner Of Conscience Released (Russian Federation: UA 12.15)

On 27 December 2017, Tatar activist Rafis Kashapov was released from prison after having served the full three-year sentence for his criticism of Russia’s involvement in the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine and the treatment of Crimean Tatars in the annexed Crimea. Amnesty International recognised the activist as a prisoner of conscience while he was in detention.

January 3, 2018 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Missing Bangladeshi Academic Returned Home (Bangladesh: UA 252.17)

Mubashar Hasan, a well-known Bangladeshi academic who went missing and was feared to have been subject to an enforced disappearance, was returned home on 22 December, after 44 days.

December 18, 2017 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Palestinian Human Rights Defender Released (Israel/OPT: UA 154.16)

Palestinian human rights defender and media coordinator for prisoners’ rights group Addameer, Hasan Safadi, was released on 7 December from Ketziot Prison in Israel. He spent nearly a year and a half in administrative detention without charge or trial. He has now returned home to his family in Beit Hanina, in occupied East Jerusalem

December 6, 2017 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Human Rights Defender Acquitted Of All Charges (Zimbabwe: UA 169.16)

Pastor Evan Mawarire, a human rights defender in Zimbabwe, was acquitted of the charge of ‘subversion of constitutional elected government’ on 29 November.

November 27, 2017 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Investigations Into Human Rights Defender Closed (Malaysia: UA 263.16)

The Malaysian police have officially closed all investigations into Maria Chin Abdullah, who was detained under security laws for organizing a rally on free and fair elections. Placed in solitary confinement for ten days in November 2016, she was released on 28 November 2016 and has continued with her human rights work. She is grateful for all the support and no further action is needed.

November 10, 2017 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Crimean Tatar Leaders Released (Ukraine: UA 205.16)

Crimean Tatar leaders Ilmi Umerov and Akhtem Chiygoz, both sentenced to prison by the de facto authorities in Russian-occupied Crimea, were taken to an airport and flown to Turkey on 25 October. On 27 October they arrived in the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv.

November 8, 2017 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Arkansas Supreme Court Stops Execution (USA: UA 202.17)

On 7 November, the Arkansas Supreme Court granted a stay of execution in the case of Jack Greene, a 62-year-old man who was scheduled to be executed on 9 November. The state said that it would not seek to have the stay lifted.

November 8, 2017 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Ministry Of Interior Drops Terrorism Charges (Chile: UA 234.17)

The Chilean Minister of Interior submitted an application to the court for the crimes of four Indigenous Mapuche men to be reclassified and no longer considered “terrorist crimes”. The men are accused of having burned down an Evangelical church.

November 7, 2017 • Victory

Urgent Action Victory! Saudi Arabian Writer Zahair Kutbi Released (Saudi Arabia: UA 188.15)

On 23 June, Saudi Arabian writer Dr Zuhair Kutbi was released after serving two years in prison. He remains banned from travelling and writing on social media. The conditions of his release are unknown. On 23 June, Dr Zuhair Kutbi, a prominent Saudi Arabian writer, was released after serving two years in prison. On 21 … Continued