Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search

 


Urewera 17 Profile: Omar Hamed - Student Activist

Over the coming 2 weeks Scoop.co.nz will be profiling each of the so-called terrorists arrested on Monday 15th October and now known as the Urewera 17. The second profile is of Omar Hamed whose name is no longer suppressed as of this afternoon after his lawyer failed to file an appeal to continue it in the Auckland High Court. Omar Hamed is the youngest of the so-called terrorists at 19 and is being held at an Auckland youth justice facility.

Omar Hamed
Aged 19 - Student


Profile By Joseph Barratt

Standing at the dock is a skinny 19-year-old boy, fluffy hair, wearing glasses and an old wool jersey, he gives a smile to his mother and friends.

Like all the defendants Omar Hamed is charged with firearm offences and police are still considering laying terrorist charges against him – he is one of the 17-arrested in the police raids last week.

Half-Palestinian, born in Greece but raised in New Zealand, he has campaigned for social justice from an early age. In the past he has told reporters that he gained his inspiration from seeing his mother struggling to stop National and NZ First attacks on social welfare.

He told them that once he began to get a better understanding of issues he started writing and educating others. He has written several pieces published on Scoop.co.nz in recent months.

An active member in Students for peace and justice in Palestine, Omar is also active in a range of causes in New Zealand, that include the www.Supersizemypay.com campaign aimed at raising the minimum wage, and Radical Youth.

He currently studies History and Sociology at Auckland University.

Maire Leadbeater the head of the New Zealand Indonesian Human Rights Committee and sister of Green MP Keith Locke has worked together a lot with him.

She describes him as someone who is, “very dedicated and committed to human justice.”

“He was one of the key people with an interest in the Superfunds,” she said. “He did a lot of research into the superfund investments.”

The Governments Superfund has come under pressure this year because of revelations of apparent unethical investments, it includes investments in arms manufacturers, nuclear technology, and Total- the French petroleum company that has operations in Burma.

He was “keen for everyone to work together [to raise the Superfund issue]” Leadbeater says, he even attended a meeting with Superfund director in August to discuss the possibility of ending those investments.

A friend and activist that has known him for 3 ½ years says he was an articulate speaker and also very passionate.

He went on to say that that some people come along to protests for the fun of it but he was really committed, he would spend hours researching and writing about the different causes.

“He is someone who cares about the issues, which stems from the fact that he cares about people,” the friend said.

Hamed was also instrumental in organizing the recent protests against the US-NZ Partnership forum and also lives and helps run A Space Inside Social Centre, an Anarchist collective on Symonds Street. It runs as a bike workshop, library, meeting room for discussion of ideas and holds film screenings and shows for anyone interested.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Stuart Littlewood: What More Horrors Are In Store For Gaza?

I wonder what Hamas and Israeli leaders are thinking as they survey the devastation in Gaza and review the death-toll and casualty figures? Or course, neither has to live among the ruins and clamber over the devastation. More>>

ALSO:

Michael Hammerschlag: The Battle For Lysychansk; Ukr On The Move

I reached my friend Andre Samobarona (self-defense militia from Maidan) at the front Sunday- where I didn't know he was till last call 5-6 days ago, “I'm in a battle- can't talk”. He was out of touch till today, when he was on R+R from the National ... More>>

Shobha Shukla: Prevention Technologies For HIV And STIs At AIDS 2014

Women of reproductive age have a need for prevention of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV, and family planning methods. More importantly, women need prevention tools/methods that are under their control and do not leave them at the mercy of ... More>>

Gary G. Kohls: The Hiroshima Myth And The Glorification Of American Militarism

This coming Wednesday, August 6, 2014, is the 69th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, the whole truth of which has been heavily censored and mythologized ever since war-weary Americans celebrated V-J Day on August 15. More>>

Ramzy Baroud: Gaza’s Resistance Will Not Be Crushed

On the 13th day of Israel’s so-called Operation Protective Edge, stories of entire families collectively pulverized, women and children keenly targeted by Israeli soldiers saturate the media. Until now, 430 Palestinians have been killed, mostly women and ... More>>

ALSO:

Ian Anderson: Rearranging The Deck Chairs On The Titanic? The Labour Party And MANA

Early in July this year, Labour Party leader David Cunliffe made headlines by apologising for being a man. Stoked by capitalist media sensation, Prime Minister John Key responded that “not all men” abuse women. More>>

Shobha Shukla: Break The Silos: Drug Use, HIV, HCV, TB, Laws And Funding

Viet Nam is one of the countries in the world that has made remarkable progress over the last decade in not only making harm reduction and HIV services available and accessible for people who use drugs but also reforming laws for supportive health ... More>>

ALSO:

Fiona Gordon: Illegal Wildlife Trading: The Global Response

At the closing session of the inaugural United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) in Nairobi last month, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said, “We need to act decisively to change humanity’s relationship with our planet.” More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
TEDxAuckland
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news