Lush’s Charity pot helps Save Shaker Aamer Campaign

Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics company has a campaign supporting charities concerned with human rights, animal welfare and environmental protection. And now, one of those charities is Save Shaker Aamer.

shaker-aamer-charity-pot

In 2013, Charity Pot donated over £2.5 million to organizations around the world. The funding generated by Charity Pot sales is essential for the survival of independent groups. All of the proceeds, minus VAT, are donated to independent grassroots charities like East Kent Against Fracking to lobby against planning application; provided Stop The Cull with binoculars to locate shooters in ‘cull zones;’ and helped rental advisory group Digs, host a series of training events to build a campaign against exploitation by private landlords.

Lush has made a video talking about some of the charities that they support and why and how they do that.

Order Spectacle’s DVDs  Shaker Aamer: a decade of injustice ( New Version) and  Outside The Law: Stories from Guantánamo

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Video of Save Shaker Aamer Campaign protest

The Shaker Aamer Campaign held a protest vigil for Shaker Aamer on Wednesday April 9th in Parliament Square and they walked to the Foreign Office calling for the urgent release and return to the UK of British Resident Shaker Aamer, who is still held unlawfully in Guantanamo. The Shaker Aamer Campaign is still fighting to bring him back home with demonstrations around London explaining to people what is happening.

Order Spectacle’s DVDs  Shaker Aamer: a decade of injustice ( New Version) and  Outside The Law: Stories from Guantánamo

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Time is running out. Save Shaker Aamer Campaign protest on April 9th in Parliament Square

PRESS RELEASE FROM THE SAVE SHAKER AAMER CAMPAIGN PROTEST VIGIL FOR SHAKER AAMER, “TIME IS RUNNING OUT”

The Save Shaker Aamer Campaign will hold a protest vigil for Shaker Aamer on Wednesday April 9th in Parliament Square, opposite Parliament, from 1pm to 3pm. Wearing orange boiler-suits and black hoods, campaigners will walk to the Foreign Office, King Charles Street, to hand in letters to the Foreign Secretary William Hague calling for the urgent release and return to the UK of British Resident Shaker Aamer, who is still held unlawfully in Guantanamo.

shaker postcard z 2011

The vigil will continue opposite the Foreign Office where they will read passages from Shaker Aamer’s own words. He has found ways to send a series of letters and messages to his family and the world even from his steel cell in Guantanamo. His poignant words tell of his daily brutal treatment by the guards, his sadness of not being able to be with his children to show his love for them and his hope that, in the end, truth and justice will be restored and the black stain of Guantanamo will end.

No one can forget the dignity and wisdom of his words even as he suffers the torture of solitary confinement and casual brutality of daily injustice. No one should forget Shaker’s cry from his steel cell, as recorded by CBS in November last year.

Please, we are tired. Either you leave us to die in peace – or tell the world the truth. Open up the place – let the world come to visit. Let the world hear what is happening. Tell the world the truth.”

Shaker Aamer has been held in Guantanamo for over twelve years without charge or trial in Guantanamo. He has suffered harsh treatment and torture. He was cleared to leave Guantanamo in 2007 and 2010. The UK Government has called for his release and return to the UK as a matter of urgency, President Obama has pledged to close Guantanamo but still there is no news of Shaker Aamer’s return.

Time is running out for Shaker. He has been in Guantanamo for over twelve years. His lawyer Clive Stafford Smith has written to William Hague and stated that Shaker Aamer “is gradually dying in Guantanamo.” His health is of great concern. He has many serious conditions and suffers daily brutal treatment by the guards. At times he despairs of an end to his ordeal. Time is running out for justice and freedom for Shaker. The UK Government must act now to bring him home.

The Save Shaker Aamer Campaign 01903 206588 / 07756493877

 

Order Spectacle’s DVDs  Shaker Aamer: a decade of injustice ( New Version) and  Outside The Law: Stories from Guantánamo

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Or visit our Guantánamo project  and Shaker Aamer project pages for more information and videos.

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SAVE SHAKER AAMER CAMPAIGN DEMO FEB. 14th MI6 BUILDING, VAUXHALL, LONDON SE1 7TP

PRESS RELEASE FOR THE SAVE SHAKER AAMER CAMPAIGN DEMONSTRATION ON FEBRUARY 14TH 2014, OUTSIDE THE MI6 BUILDING, VAUXHALL, LONDON SE1 7TP

February 14th marks the day, twelve years ago, that Shaker Aamer was cruelly transported from Afghanistan to Guantanamo. The Save Shaker Aamer Campaign will hold a protest vigil opposite M16 from 1pm to 3pm to demand Shaker Aamer’s release and return from Guantanamo to the UK.

shakerkidsborder

It is widely reported that M15 and M16 may be secretly briefing against Mr. Aamer to block his return, in an attempt to suppress any further allegations that UK agents have been complicit in torture abroad. Shaker Aamer has stated that UK agents were present when he was tortured in Afghanistan. He had been in Afghanistan for only a few months working for a charity to establish schools and projects to help poor communities.

After 9/11, the US and UK bombed Afghanistan and offered bounties to Afghan villagers for foreigners who remained in their midst. Over 600 men were abducted, tortured and rendered to Guantanamo. Now, twelve years later, British Resident Shaker Aamer is still there, in chains, in solitary confinement, despite facing no charge or trial. He was cleared to leave Guantanamo over six years ago by the unanimous decision of six US security agencies including the CIA, State and Defense Departments. In September 2013, Prime Minister David Cameron wrote to President Obama to

“make it clear that we want Shaker Aamer released and returned to the UK as a matter of urgency.”

If MI5 and MI6 are lying about Mr. Aamer to prevent his return, they are acting against the will of Parliament. Their statements must be retracted. Mr. Aamer has been threatened to be forcibly transferred to Saudi Arabia, a country he fled from over 30 years ago. There he would be silenced forever. The UK Government has recognized Mr. Aamer’s right to return to the UK as a long-term British Resident. All the other Guantanamo British Nationals and Residents have been released to their homes and families in the UK.

All of them have made allegations of complicity of torture against the UK security services which have yet to be investigated. It is time for the Government to have a public inquiry into all these allegations as was promised three years ago. Shaker’s allegations must also be heard, NOT SILENCED.

SSAC will be protesting on this sad day to demand an end to Shaker’s ordeal. As it is also Valentine’s Day, SSAC will be presenting a card to Sir John Sawer, Chief of MI6, stating that “MI6, we would love you to … help us bring Shaker Aamer home. Shaker Aamer, unlawfully imprisoned and tortured in Guantanamo for twelve years – he faces no charge or trial- he has been cleared since 2007 to leave Guantanamo. So why is Shaker Aamer still there? Shaker Aamer would love to be at home with his wife and family in the UK. M16, you could help. Tell the truth about torture! MI6 have a heart, don’t block Shaker Aamer’s release to the UK from Guantanamo.”

Further details from The Save Shaker Aamer Campaign 07756493877

 

Order Spectacle’s DVDs  Shaker Aamer: a decade of injustice ( New Version) and  Outside The Law: Stories from Guantánamo

Click Guantánamo for more blogs
Or visit our Guantánamo project  and Shaker Aamer project pages for more information and videos.

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The Hostages of Guantanamo: A Letter From Shaker Aamer

 A letter from Shaker Aamer, the last UK resident in Guantanamo Bay, to is lawyer has been recently unclassified by the Pentagon. The letter, dated July 15 2011, describes the inhumane treatment the detainee of ten years has been experiencing and the continuing injustice that led him to begin a peaceful protest involving a hunger strike.

I the signatory below, in Camp 5E announce the start of a peaceful protest/hunger strike for the reasons enumerated below:

1. The opening and continuing operation of this unjust detention facility for the ninth year of my continuing and indefinite detention in the absence of any real accusation or crimes committed. Therefore I am hostage.

2. The inhumane treatment and deprivation of some of the items we are truly in need of, most important of which are the family calls since they are most critical to our families, especially to those experiencing special circumstances. Therefore, I want these calls to take place on a continuing basis and recur once every 15 days. These family calls ought to last no less than 2 hours with further consideration given to those experiencing special circumstances. I also speak for the regular mail to be made more efficient and provide us with e-mail.

3. The inhumane treatment is taking place at the hospital among other areas especially affecting the sick and those who are on strike and our deprivation of real treatment, health diet and appropriate clothing which are not provided to us nor are we allowed to provide them for ourselves.

4. Not upholding the promise that both your president and government gave on 01/21/2009 concerning the closing of Guantánamo detention facility. Very few people have left ever since although many here have been deemed to not represent any danger for the United States. Therefore, I ask you to establish justice and remove the injustice that has befallen us and our brothers in all detention centers.

By submitting these demands, I affirm our right to life. We want our freedom and the right to return to our homes since I am innocent of the charges (if there were any) you have levied against us. I ask that you establish justice that you claim to be a foundation of your country.

After these years of hardship we have spent here — and which I managed to do only through the grace of God, otherwise I would have lost my sanity — I want you to consider my case as soon as possible and give me the right to a just and public trial or set me free without conditions.

Shaker Aamer (00239)

 

See our Shaker Aamer pages for more information.

Sign the Government petition to return Shaker Aamer to the UK.

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Shaker Aamer – Ten Years On


Shaker Aamer is one of the 171 men still held in Guantanamo Bay and its last remaining British resident. Despite never having had a trial, having been approved for release twice and been the focus of a high-profile campaign for his immediate release, Shaker has remained in detention for more than ten years. His physical and mental health deterioration is also a prevalent concern.

Spectacle is making a short film about Shaker Aamer to mark the tenth anniversary of his incarceration. The film includes interviews with activists and former detainees and paints a picture of who Shaker Aamer is and the injustices he has endured for the last decade.

The project area of the Spectacle website also contains full information about Shaker Aamer, the progress of the campaign and links to more content such as Scott Horton’s 2010 article, ‘The Guantánamo “Suicides”: A Camp Delta sergeant blows the whistle’, published in Harper’s Magazine.

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A screening of “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantanamo” at the European Parliament in Brussels- January 24


On Tuesday January 24, at 7 pm, there will be a special screening of the acclaimed documentary film “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” at the European Parliament in Brussels. The screening will take place in the main European Parliament building, the Altiero Spinelli Building, Rue Wiertz, in Room ASP – 3G2, on the 3rd floor, and Moazzam Begg, former Guantánamo prisoner, and the director of the NGO Cageprisoners, will be joining Andy Worthington and Polly Nash for the screening, and for the Q&A session afterwards.

 

The screening has been arranged by Jean Lambert (UK Green MEP), with the support of Sarah Ludford (UK Liberal Democrat MEP) and Ana Gomes (Portuguese Socialist MEP), and the purpose of the screening is to raise awareness of the continued existence of Guantánamo, and its mockery of universal notions of fairness and justice, ten years after the prison opened, on January 11, 2002. Given President Obama’s very public failure to close the prison as promised, it is essential that other countries step forward to take cleared prisoners who cannot be safely repatriated, and one of the main purposes of the screening is to encourage EU countries to re-engage with the process of resettling prisoners that was so successful in 2009 and 2010.

The screening is free, but anyone who wishes to attend needs to contact Rachel Sheppard, the Parliamentary Assistant to Jean Lambert MEP:  jean.lambert@europarl.europa.eu

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

If those wishing to attend do not already have an access badge for the European Parliament, they need to provide their full name, date of birth, nationality, passport number or ID card and number and also specify the type of document (passport, ID card) so that access badges can be arranged. Without an access badge, those wishing to attend the screening will not be allowed.

Moazzam Begg and Andy Worthington will be available to talk to the press along with Jean Lambert MP, Sarah Ludford MEP and Ana Gomes MEP they are hoping to have the opportunity to discuss the need for European countries to revisit the generosity shown in 2009 and 2010, when many offered new homes to cleared Guantánamo prisoners who could not be safely repatriated.

171 prisoners are still held in Guantánamo, and 89 of these have been cleared for release by President Obama’s interagency Guantánamo Review Task Force. 58 of these men are Yemenis, whose release is being prevented by President Obama, and by Congress, but others remain in need of new homes, and it is only the absence of offers from, for example, countries in Europe, that is preventing them from finally being freed.

As Guantánamo recently marked the 10th anniversary of its opening, with no sign of when, if ever it will close, given Congressional opposition, and the President’s refusal, or inability to assert his authority, it would be a powerful humanitarian gesture if European countries once more agreed to take cleared prisoners, to help to close this shameful icon of the Bush administration’s misguided “war on terror.”

 

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EU to ban film on victims of rape in Afghanistan

London based film-maker, Clementine Malpas, has been threatened with legal action by the European Union after making a documentary that exposed the abuse of women in Afghanistan.

The EU hired  Ms Malpas, 30, to highlight the life of battered wives and rape victims convicted of moral crimes by anti-female Afghan courts. But only 24 hours before the film was due to be delivered, EU officials stated that they did not want to “upset relations with the justice institutions” in Afghanistan.

Ms Malpas is now accused of breaching her contract after breaching her contract after claims the film was screened for outside viewers.


She obtained written consent to film Gulnaz, 19, who was jailed for 12 years for adultery after being raped, and Farida, 26, also jailed for adultery after fleeing her abusive husband. Both women risked their personal safety to speak up and the EU insists that it is protecting them by hiding their identities.

An EU spokesman said: “The woman and their families must be protected, which means their identities can under no circumstances be revealed. The film in its current state does not conceal the persons in question.”

Ms Malpas, who has produced a number of human rights films in Africa, told the London Evening Standard: “It is the women’s choice to tell their stories and I admire their clever-eyed courage. It is not for us to veto their votes.”

These women are well aware of the fact that they’re putting their own and their families’ lives at risk in order to tell their horror stories. They have made up their mind, so who are the EU to dictate what they’re allowed to say? These women’s bravery should be applauded – not shut down.

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Julian Assange to speak at Anti-war Mass Assembly in London – Saturday 8 October

The Anti-war Mass Assembly, marking 10 years of war in Afghanistan and Iraq will start at 12 noon in Trafalgar Square, London tomorrow 8th October.

It will be officially opened by Joe Glenton, the ex-soldier who was jailed for refusing to fight in Afghanistan alongside Grace McCann, who in 2010 attempted a citizen’s arrest on Tony Blair.

Supporting Glenton and the assembly will be high profile figures such as Noam Chomsky, Julian Assange, Jemima Khan and Tony Benn.

For more information including a list of who will be attending, a complete timetable and for the chance to sign the pledge to attend please click on the Stop the War Coalition’s website and/or the Anti War Mass Assembly’s dedicated site.

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USA Congress to vote for “outside the law” detainees to remain in Guantanamo forever

USA Amnesty International  calls for action to stop Guantanamo detention centers being open permanently. This is a response to the US Congress having to decide soon whether the rights of those kept in custody in Guantanamo would be yet again weakened significantly. Now congress will vote for “outside the law” detainees to be forever denied freedom and kept in indefinite detention.

This Human Rights organization asks American citizens to either sign their online petition or directly call congress representatives, and to help in doing so Amnesty International provides detailed instructions.  Among them there are such steps to follow as:

* I am calling to urge the Senator to oppose provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 (H.R. 1540) that would keep Guantanamo open.
* The Guantanamo detention facility must be closed. Indefinite detention and military commissions must end.
* Detainees must either be charged and fairly tried in US federal courts, or be released to countries where their human rights will be respected.
* I don’t want our government to sacrifice human rights in the name of security.

In its online petition Amnesty International says: “Indefinite detention, denial of due process and the unfair military commissions are violations of human rights and contravene international law. There is a better way to ensure justice and security for all of us.”

Amnesty International puts forward a solution for US Congress, which could release the detainees to countries which respect human rights or charge and try those individuals in US federal court.

The Guantanamo Bay detention camp is far and wide known for abusing human rights of “prisoners” from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Human rights organizations claim that those centers resemble concentration camps. This is because of the interrogation techniques used on prisoners, such as “stress positions”, “sleep deprivation” and other.

Spectacle is running a series of projects on Guantanamo detention centers, and you can find them in Guantanamo section on Spectacle’s blog. Also, you can order “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantanamo” documentary also produced by Spectacle, by visiting Projects section on Spectacle’s website.

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