Answer the call to defend people under immediate threat of grave human rights abuse.
The concept is simple: Take Action, Change a Life.
Urgent Actions ask our community of volunteers to flood the mailboxes, inboxes, phones and social media of authorities when someone is in imminent danger of human rights violations. Your letters, emails, phone calls, faxes and Tweets have helped to halt executions, support human rights defenders and free prisoners of conscience—people jailed solely for the peaceful expression of their beliefs and identity.
You can get started today by signing up below and watching our video which gives a brief overview of the UAN, how it works and how you can lend your voice to fighting human rights abuses.
Sign up, by clicking the button below, to receive Urgent Action emails. You can choose to receive all emails or a more limited number. You can also choose to receive emails on specific issues or regions.
Urgent Action emails specify the case, local and international government officials to contact, their contact information and suggestions about what to write, say or Tweet. Learn more about writing effective letters and emails.
Are you an educator looking for ways to engage your students in human rights? Find out how your students can show their power through letter writing!
In many cases, your action on these cases leads to better conditions for prisoners and their eventual release. Those individuals at the center of these Urgent Actions often send their thanks to Amnesty International, citing that these messages serve as a source of hope.
“The reason we could resist the ban and move forward was the international support and solidarity by Amnesty International activists around the world. We could not have gone further without your support” – ODTÜ/Student Organized Pride March in Turkey (UA 83.18)
“My case once again showed how important solidarity and attention are in protecting the freedom of speech and human rights. I admire your noble work and boundless courage, dear activists” – Bobomurod Abdullayev, POC from Uzbekistan (UA 232.17)
“I am very grateful for all the support I received while I was in prison. Life in prison was very difficult and I was treated badly, but the support of those who believed in me made me strong.” – Munther Amira, Palestinian Human Rights Defender (UA 26.18)
Dr. Peter Magombeyi, a medical doctor and Acting President of the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association (ZHDA), was abducted on the night of 14 September. He had been receiving threats from suspected members of the Central Intelligence Organization warning him to stop his involvement in a doctor’s strike and that failure to do so would result in his enforced disappearance. Following a habeas corpus application, the High Court has ordered an investigation into his disappearance. However, to date, no action has been taken and Dr. Peter Magombeyi’s whereabouts remain unknown.
On 5 July 2019, Egyptian security forces arrested Ramy Shaath, transferred him to an undisclosed location and concealed his whereabouts for about 36 hours. He then appeared before a prosecutor at the Supreme State Security Prosecution (SSSP) in New Cairo and was accused of “aiding a terrorist group in achieving its goals”. His detention was renewed on 15 September 2019 for another 15 days. Amnesty International considers Ramy Shaath to be a prisoner of conscience, as his detention stems solely from the peaceful exercise of his right to freedom of expression and his right to participate in public affairs.
Austrian-Iranian businessman Kamran Ghaderi is serving a 10-year prison sentence after a grossly unfair trial that relied on “confessions” obtained under torture to convict him of “co-operating with hostile states against the Islamic Republic”. He was denied access to a lawyer and his family, and he needs ongoing medical care for a tumor in his left leg.
On 31 August 2019, Moroccan police arrested journalist Hajar Raissouni on suspicion of carrying out an abortion, despite lack of evidence supporting the claims. She was arrested as she left a doctor’s clinic in Rabat, along with her fiancé, the doctor and two medical staff. Hajar and the four others remain detained until today. Their trial is on September 16th.
University student Rohima Akter Khushi has been suspended during her second semester at a private university in Cox’s Bazar solely due to her being Rohingya. One of the very few Rohingya young women who have braved all odds to pursue higher education, denying her access solely based on her identity is an affront to the human rights commitment that Bangladesh has made under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
On 11 September 2019, authorities arrested independent Cuban journalist Mr. Roberto de Jesús Quiñones Haces in Cuba, after he was convicted of resistance and disobedience in August 2019. He is a prisoner of conscience and should be immediately and unconditionally released.
On 5 September 2019, journalist Amade Abubacar and his lawyer were notified by the Office of the Public Prosecutor of Cabo Delgado Province of final charges against him. On 10 September, the defense presented a response to the accusation. The Cabo Delgado Provincial Court will now decide whether to accept the charges against Amade or withdraw the accusations against him.
Crimean Tatar, Edem Bekirov, is finally free and reunited with his family in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, following a prisoner exchange between Russia and Ukraine on 7 September. Edem Bekirov was arrested by Russian security forces on 12 December 2018 in Russia-occupied Crimea and held in pre-trial detention in inhumane conditions and deprived of the specialized medical care he urgently required.
Fears are mounting that the Chinese authorities will imminently carry out the execution of Tashpolat Tiyip, a prominent Uyghur academic who was convicted in a secret and grossly unfair trial. Subjected to an enforced disappearance in 2017, he has been arbitrarily detained since then. No information has been made available about charges and proceedings against him, and his current whereabouts remain unknown.
Alejandra Barrera, a transgender Salvadorian activist held in USA immigration detention since 2017, was released late Friday 6 September 2019. We will continue to monitor the status of her asylum petition.