Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Amnesty concerned about detention of Greenpeace activists

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL

PRESS RELEASE

27 September 2013

Amnesty concerned about detention of Greenpeace activists

The news that a Russian court has ordered Greenpeace activists to be detained for two months without charge is disturbing Amnesty International has said.

Two New Zealanders are among the 28 Greenpeace International activists, as well as a freelance photographer and a freelance videographer, who were detained last week while protesting against Arctic drilling near Prirazlomnaya, a drilling platform in the Pechora Sea, close to the Novaya Zemlya archipelago off Russia’s northern coast.

“The Greenpeace activists and accompanying journalists must be released on fair and reasonable bail, be informed promptly of any charges against them and given full access to defence lawyers,” said Grant Bayldon, Executive Director of Amnesty International New Zealand.

The Russian authorities have stated that they are considering charging the activists with piracy.

“Charges of piracy are manifestly unfounded in this case – having no basis in law or reality – and it’s profoundly damaging to level such serious charges so carelessly.”

Amnesty International is also concerned by reports that the Greenpeace activists were provided with inadequate interpretation during the hearings at the Lenin district court in Murmansk.

The detention of the activists is another example of the continuing crackdown on the rights to freedom of expression and assembly in the Russian Federation.

“There is a long list of cases where Russia has arbitrarily restricted the right to freedom of assembly and imposed harsh sentencing on peaceful protesters,” said Bayldon.

Only yesterday Amnesty highlighted the suppression of freedom of expression after a member of the punk band Pussy Riot was moved to solitary confinement after she complained about prison conditions.

Reports of unfair trials in the country are numerous and widespread. Amnesty International has received complaints from lawyers across Russia about procedural breaches which undermine their clients’ right to a fair trial.

“This includes the failure to inform the detained person’s family about a detention and the denial of access to a lawyer. Both fundamental safeguards to ensure a person’s human rights are respected,” Bayldon commented.

The detention of the Greenpeace activists also comes after new laws were put in place in 2012 giving the authorities sweeping powers to clamp down on NGOs, human rights and political activists in Russia. Laws which Amnesty International has previously said are at odds with Russia's international human rights obligations.

“The current restrictions imposed on the Greenpeace activists are not proportionate to their actions and should be reviewed immediately,” added Bayldon.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sits at 10.30am today before MPs are summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber.

The speech delivered by the Governor-General on the Government’s behalf outlines its priorities for this Parliament.

After this MPs will return to the House for the presentation of petitions and papers and the introduction of any bills.

The Government has five notices of motion on the Order Paper which can be debated. These relate to relating to the appointment of the Deputy Speaker, Assistant Speakers, the reinstatement of business in a carryover motion and one on “Entities to be deemed public organisations”. More>>

 

Tertiary Education: Students Doing It Tough As Fees Rise Again

The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. More>>

ALSO:

Housing, Iraq: PM Press Conference – 20 October 2014

Prime Minister John Key met with press today to discuss:
• Housing prices and redevelopment in Auckland
• Discussions with Tony Abbott on the governmental response to ISIS, and New Zealand’s election to the UN Security Council More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Review Team Named, Leadership Campaign Starts

Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban.

ALSO:


Roy Morgan Poll: National Slips, Labour Hits Lows

The first New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll since the NZ Election shows National 43.5% (down 3.54% since the September 20 Election). This isn’t unusual, National support has dropped after each of John Key’s Election victories... However, support for the main opposition Labour Party has crashed to 22.5% (down 2.63% and the lowest support for Labour since the 1914 NZ Election as United Labour). More>>

ALSO:

In On First Round: New Zealand Wins Security Council Seat

Prime Minister John Key has welcomed New Zealand securing a place on the United Nations Security Council for the 2015-16 term. More>>

ALSO:

TPP Leak: Intellectual Property Text Confirms Risk - Jane Kelsey

The US is continuing its assault on generic medicines through numerous proposed changes to patent laws. ‘These are bound to impact on Pharmac if they are accepted’, according to Professor Kelsey... Copyright is another area of ongoing sensitivity... More>>

ALSO:

RMA: Smith Plans Reform To Ease Urban Development

Newly appointed Environment Minister Nick Smith has announced Resource Management Act reform to foster urban development, where high land prices and expensive resource consents are blocking efforts to provide affordable housing. More>>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On New Zealand getting involved (again) in other people's wars

Apparently, the Key government is still pondering how New Zealand will contribute to the fight against Islamic State. Long may it ponder, given the lack of consensus among our allies as to how to fight IS, where to fight it (Syria, Iraq, or both?) and with whose ground troops, pray tell? More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On child poverty, and David Shearer’s latest outburst

The politicisation of (a) the public service and (b) the operations of the Official Information Act have been highlighted by the policy advice package on child poverty that RNZ’s resolute political editor Brent Edwards has finally prised out of the Ministry of Social Development. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On the government’s review of security laws

So the Key government is about to launch a four week review of the ability of our existing legislation to deal with “suspected and returning foreign terrorist fighters, and other violent extremists.”

According to its terms of reference, the review will consider whether the SIS, GCSB and Police are sufficiently able right now to (a) investigate and monitor suspected and returning foreign terrorist fighters… More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news