Amnesty Urgent Actions
Accueil Urgent Actions 2023 08


Prisoner of conscience Maykel Osorbo in danger
Maykel Castillo Pérez, also known as «Maykel Osorbo», is a Cuban musician and prisoner of conscience who has faced constant harassment and arbitrary detentions. On May 18, 2021, state security agents arrested him at his home. In June 2022, he was sentenced to nine years in prison. Since April 2023, there are reports that indicate that he has been threatened by fellow inmates in his detention area, and the Cuban authorities have not ensured his safety.
Academic, critical of government, detained
Gubad Ibadoghlu, a renowned political economist and civil activist, was detained on 23 July 2023 on fabricated charges of the production, acquisition, or sale of counterfeit money by an organized group. His arrest and prosecution are an apparent retaliation for his criticism of the government and political and civic activities, including helping set up a foundation that sought funding from foreign assets seized from Azerbaijani nationals abroad under anti-corruption legislation to benefit Azerbaijani students. Gubad Ibadoghlu has major health issues, and while in pretrial detention his life is at risk due to unsafe prison conditions and denial of adequate healthcare.
Execution imminent in torture tainted case
On 4 August the family of Nguyen Van Chuong was asked to report within three days to the People’s Court of Hai Phong City in Viet Nam to make arrangements to receive his remains after his execution. Nguyen Van Chuong was convicted in unfair proceedings mainly on the basis of a «confession» that he has said was extracted through torture during police interrogation. Two witnesses who stated that he was 40km away from the murder scene said that the police physically abused and threatened them to withdraw their testimonies. Nguyen Van Chuong has been on death row since 2008. His family were not informed of the date for the set execution.
Release terminally ill Palestinian prisoner
Walid Daqqah is a terminally ill Palestinian prisoner who was diagnosed with a rare case of bone marrow cancer. His health condition has been exacerbated by numerous instances of medical neglect in prison. In March, he completed a 37-year sentence for his involvement with an armed group that had abducted and killed an Israeli soldier in 1984. However, in 2018, an Israeli court sentenced him to a further two years in prison, delaying his release until March 2025, a date which he may not live to see. On 7 August, the Israeli District court rejected his petition for early release on medical grounds. The Israeli authorities must immediately release Walid Daqqah on humanitarian grounds and allow him to spend his remaining time with his family.
Human rights lawyer must be released
Since his arrest on 10 September 2017, Egyptian authorities have arbitrarily detained Ibrahim Metwaly, human rights lawyer and co-founder of the Families of the Disappeared in Egypt group, who was detained on his way to Geneva to address the UN. Ibrahim Metwaly is held at the Badr Prison Complex in conditions that violate the absolute prohibition of torture and other ill-treatment. He must be immediately and unconditionally released as he is being held solely due to the peaceful exercise of his human rights, including seeking truth and justice for his forcibly disappeared son.
Release women director and playwright
Theatre director Evgenia Berkovich and playwright Svetlana Petriychuk are being arbitrarily detained since 5 May and face prosecution for authoring and staging «Finist Yasny Sokol», an award-winning play about women who left for Syria and married members of armed groups. Both women face absurd charges of «justifying terrorism» which carry up to seven years in prison. Russian authorities must immediately release them and drop all charges.
Activist sentenced following refoulement
On 4 July, a court of appeal in Algiers confirmed the sentencing of Amazigh activist Slimane Bouhafs to three years in prison and a 100'000DA (around USD 734) fine. Slimane Bouhafs had been granted refugee status in Tunisia in 2020. However, this did not protect him from being kidnapped from his home in Tunis and tried on charges of terrorism for his supposed affiliations to a Kabylie independence organisation in September 2021 and since held in Kolea prison, near to Algiers. Not only are the charges against Slimane Bouhafs bogus, but his entire trial is illegal under international human rights law. He must be released immediately and all charges against him dropped.
Student detained for a year for hostingwebinar
Khadijatul Kubra was a 17-year-old meritorious student at Jagannath University in Dhaka, Bangladesh, when she hosted a webinar from an online talk show called «Humanity for Bangladesh». A guest speaker, formerly a Bangladeshi army official now based in Canada, criticised the government during the webinar. As a result, Khadija and the guest speaker were prosecuted under the Digital Security Act (DSA). Khadija was arrested on 27 August 2022 and has been held without charges, despite her medical conditions. Khadija must be released immediately.
Lawyer and human rights defender jailed
On 28th August 2023, Guatemalan lawyer and human rights defender, Claudia González Orellana was arrested at her home after a judge issued a questionable arrest warrant against her. Claudia is a former CICIG official – a UN anti-corruption mechanism that operated in Guatemala until 2019 – and whose former officials have faced widespread persecution. Claudia is also the legal representative for various former anti-corruption lawyers who have faced criminalization in retaliation for their work. Claudia’s arrest represents a clear attempt to silence her, and all those fighting for justice and human rights in Guatemala. Amnesty International calls on Guatemala’s Public Prosecutor’s Office to immediately and impartially review the charges against Claudia and guarantee her human rights at all stages of this process.