“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Posts Tagged ‘Peter Tatchell

There In Spirit, 26th March 2011.

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I was there in spirit, but I will leave it to others to give their real impressions, Flesh is very good on the anti-cuts demonstration:

“I was really impressed by all the Labour and labour groups who joined the march without any pomp or circumstance, added their bodies to the many others on the streets, simply trudging (or sometimes shuffling) with their enormous and lovingly stitched banners, without anybody trying to use the occasion as self-publicity fodder. Good people.

Violence drives people away. The thugs who committed acts of violence today did so simply because they enjoy violence. They need to fuck off back to the Bullingdon club or Marlborough or Guildsmiths or wherever they’re from and leave us alone. They’re nothing to do with the 500,000 people who shuffled through London today to protest the Conservative-led government’s cuts (and in many cases, the slightly less punishing but still deep cuts proposed by the opposition).

So I thought it an irresponsible and disheartening mistake for UK Uncut, asked in advance on BBC 2’s Newsnight about anticipated violence on the protest, to change the subject. They should have readily disowned it. Non-violent non-destructive occupations and flashmobs are sufficiently newsworthy without any acts of wanton destruction. To see the anarcho-syndicalist flag flying from the window of Fortum & Mason, and to hear that the atmosphere in there was festive, will make me smile for a good while to come. “

Here’s Jim’s take on events:

“Ed Miliband addressed the crowd from the end platform despite having written Labour’s cuts Manifesto for the last election and Labour councillors up and down the country voting, en masse, for cuts budgets.

In a move designed to annoy the Daily Telegraph UKUncut occupied Fortnum and Masons and there were a number of other peaceful direct actions, mainly against banks, and Anne Summers’ windows were smash in a targeted strike against, um… shops? This led some wags to comment that police were looking for “hardened protesters” and that this was the “climax of the demonstration”.

However, while the smashed windows seem pointless and, frankly, unrepresentative of the feelings of most of those turning out, the continuing direct action, which led to a number of protesters being arrested despite being completely peaceful, are a real benefit. Unlike the Iraq War march where the focus was simply on size it is very good to see that this protest was not just big, but lively and edgy too, with many people reporting a carnival atmosphere. “

Two of Peter Tatchell’s tweets seem to sum up the issues nicely in my mind:

“Ed Miliband admitted Labour would make cuts too. He offered no alternative to the ConDems, apart from cutting later #tuc #ukuncut #26march

Cuts are human rights issue. When social welfare is cut, people suffer. Shame on Cameron/Clegg. Miliband would cut 2 #ukuncut #tuc #26march “

A lot more of people’s experiences on the day can be found on Twitter, using the #26march key word.

Blue Plaque for Peter Tatchell.

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A well earned Blue Plaque is going to Peter Tatchell, and I can think of no better living human rights activist that deserves one, the Pink Paper has more:

“Hollywood actor Sir Ian McKellen will unveil a blue plaque honouring Peter Tatchell, campaigner for human rights, gay freedom and social justice, this month.

The ceremony takes place on Wednesday 29 September at 11am outside 62 Arrol House, Rockingham Street, London.

For over 40 years, Peter Tatchell has spearheaded campaigns for gay rights and human rights in Britain and across the globe. In 1983 he was the defeated Labour candidate in the Bermondsey by-election – the dirtiest, most violent election in Britain in the twentieth century. He co-founded OutRage! in 1990 and he twice attempted a citizen’s arrest of President Mugabe of Zimbabwe on charges of human rights abuses.

Last year he was named Campaigner of the Year at The Observer Ethical Awards.”

Written by modernityblog

27/09/2010 at 15:24

Paying For The Pope.

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Given the Catholic Church’s wealth (the 1965 figures) I thought that Peter Tatchell makes a good point, in the JC:

“Last year, the Pope rescinded the excommunication of the Holocaust-denying Bishop, Richard Williamson. He has called on Williamson to recant but he has not revoked his readmission to the Catholic church. A Holocaust denier remains within the faith, with the Pope’s blessing.

Benedict wants to make a saint of Pope Pius XII, despite the war-time pontiff’s failure to speak out publicly against the Holocaust. His refusal to open the Vatican files suggests that Pius’s record is less than honourable – and unworthy of sainthood.

These are two of many actions by Pope Benedict that call into question his moral judgment. He says women are unfit to be priests, childless couples should be denied fertility treatment, embryonic stem cell research is murder, using condoms to stop the spread of HIV is immoral and gay people are not entitled to equal human rights.

Most shockingly, the Pope is accused of colluding with the cover-up of child sex abuse by priests. Even today, he has not handed the Vatican’s bulging sex abuse files to the police.

Part of Benedict’s visit to Britain is being funded by the taxpayer. A Comres poll found that 77 per cent of the public oppose us footing the bill.”

Written by modernityblog

09/09/2010 at 14:21

The Pope And Politics.

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I don’t think I have ever posted on a religious theme, not that I don’t have opinions but it seems to me that arguments concerning religion tend to go nowhere and shed very little light on the issues. People frequently believe what they choose to believe irrespective of the arguments or the evidence, plus it often creates unnecessary animosity.

Probably slightly surprisingly, as an atheist, I am not particularly concerned if people believe in a Deity, a Guru or the Flying Spaghetti Monster, that is for every individual to decide for themselves, after all there should be no compunction in religion nor any enforcement of atheism.

Still the role of religious organisations in society is not a small one and in my view can often be detrimental, so I think it is perfectly proper to scrutinise religious organisations, their actions and the consequences, as public bodies.

All public bodies, in my view, should be open to scrutiny, from the highest government department to the lowliest quango, and certainly not excluding the actions of the officials. That approach should apply to major religious organisations too.

However, I have noticed during discussions on these issues that the topics of religious belief, organisational structures and the actions of leaders often become confused, unnecessarily.

It should be perfectly possible to accept that people can believe whatever religious belief they choose, but that the actions which follow from them are open to debate, further that religious hierarchies and their activities are not off-limits.

I don’t believe that anyone’s views are naturally privileged by virtue of holding those views, including my own, be that in the field of politics, faith or organised religion.

So it follows that controversial religious organisations may derive criticism from their public actions and statements. Equally, I think it is generally rude, counterproductive and unnecessary to attack sincerely held religious beliefs for no other reason than to start an argument.

If people wish to believe something that is their right, in as much as it does not adversely affect others, or that their organisations do not try to detrimentally influence public policy.

I think it’s very important to make that distinction, between belief and organisation, in much the same way that the idea of the separation of Church and State is instituted in the United States of America.

This was brought home to me whilst reading a post at Socialist Unity, Pope Welcome Here.

Readers can make their own minds up on it, but the visit of the Pope is an important one and worthy of critical comment.

I will post more in the future but for now Peter Tatchell’s words will do, from the Indy:
Read the rest of this entry »

Written by modernityblog

13/08/2010 at 23:47

Ebrahim Hamidi And His Lawyer.

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Mohammad Mostafaei, the lawyer for Ebrahim Hamidi has been forced to leave Iran.

His wife, Fereshteh Halimi, had been kidnapped and kept in Evin prison without charge until recently, the Guardian explains more:

“Mostafaei fled to Turkey, where he was promptly arrested for entering the country illegally. On Friday, however, the Turkish authorities released him after EU diplomats intervened on his behalf. As he left, Mostafaei had repeated his fears for his wife’s safety. “They’ve taken her in as a hostage; it’s kidnapping,” he told the Observer. “Just look at what is happening to my wife and realise the flaws and failings of the Iranian legal system, especially towards Ebrahim Hamidi and Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, who are awaiting execution on basis of false accusations,” he added.

Mostafaei, whose office in Tehran is now sealed off, is credited with saving at least 50 people from execution during his career, among them many juvenile offenders. A recent client, Ali Mahin-Torabi, 21, was released in July after Mostafaei’s efforts commuted his death sentence. With Mostafaei exiled, activists are worried for Hamidi. “It’s shocking that although Hamidi’s accuser admitted in a recorded testimony that he had lied, he is still facing execution,” Mostafaei said.”

Written by modernityblog

08/08/2010 at 14:02

Ebrahim Hamidi

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Peter Tatchell highlights the case of Ebrahim Hamidi:

“Iran to execute youth aged 18

False accusation of homosexual assault – Now withdrawn by accuser

Ebrahim Hamidi faces execution by hanging, despite no legal representation

His lawyer, Mohammad Mostafaei, forced into hiding by arrest warrant

Iran’s Supreme Court twice rejects guilty verdict and orders re-examination

Provincial court presses ahead with execution plan, defying Supreme Court

London – 4 August 2010

Gay Middle East and OutRage! are issuing an urgent appeal to save the life of 18 year old Iranian, Ebrahim Hamidi, who was sentenced to death on 21 June 2010 for a vague, unspecified sexual assault on a male. He is now awaiting hanging, despite his accuser admitting that he lied, and withdrawing his accusation of assault.

In addition, the Supreme Court of Iran has twice rejected the provincial court’s guilty verdict and death sentence and ordered a re-examination of the case. This ruling has been ignored by the local judiciary in East Azerbaijan province.

Ebrahim’s execution could take place at any time.

He now has no legal representation. His lawyer, Mohammad Mostafaei, has been forced into hiding after a warrant for his arrest was issued. The Iranian authorities are furious over over Mostafaei’s highly publicised efforts to stop the stoning to death of Sakineh Ashtiani on charges of adultery.

“There is no evidence that Hamidi is gay or that he committed any crime. This execution must be stopped. We need your help,” said Dan Littauer, editor of Gay Middle East.

“Ebrahim’s case shows the flaws and failings of the Iranian legal system. It is further evidence that innocent people are sentenced on false charges of homosexuality,” added Peter Tatchell of the London-based LGBTI human rights group OutRage!
Read the rest of this entry »

Written by modernityblog

04/08/2010 at 14:25

Gutless Coward

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The gutless coward in question is Nick Griffin, BNP leader.

Peter Tatchell took the antifascist fight directly to that well known neo-fascist as this marvellous BBC clip shows.

Pink News has more:

“Gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell confronted BNP leader Nick Griffin today over his party’s record of homophobia, anti-Semitism and verbal attacks on Muslims.

Mr Griffin, who was barred from a garden party at Buckingham Palace today, was leaving the BBC studios in Westminster when Mr Tatchell ambushed him in a stairwell.

Mr Tatchell said: “Hi Nick, isn’t it about time you apologised to the British people for your party’s long history of anti-Semitism, homophobia and attacks on the Muslim community?”

As he was manhandled down the stairs by Mr Griffin’s security, Mr Tatchell shouted: “This is the BNP in action. Look at them, they’re thugs.”

He added: “Why don’t you apologise, you gutless coward? You attack the vulnerable and you won’t even face an accuser.”

Mr Griffin did not respond to Mr Tatchell’s taunts but told Radio 4′s PM programme this afternoon that Mr Tatchell had “assaulted” him by shouting and his security feared the activist would become violent.

Mr Tatchell said this afternoon: “Griffin looked sheepish. He seemed stumped for an answer. I asked him again. Then he just ran off. What a coward.”

He added: “For many years, the BNP has preached a totalitarian ideology of anti-Jewish, anti-black, anti-gay and anti-Muslim hatred. The party has a long and strident hatred of non-white immigrants and asylum seekers. It’s racist views are an affront to democratic values.”

Written by modernityblog

22/07/2010 at 20:13

14 Years.

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Peter Tatchell has been covering the terrible treatment of Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga in Malawi for some time, and here is his latest update:

’14 years for Malawi couple is “brutal”

Jailed men could die in squalid prison

Malawi reverts to the mentality of the Hastings Banda dictatorship

Only hope is for Steven and Tiwonge to appeal to the High Court

London – 20 May 2010

“This is an appalling, vindictive and brutal sentence, which tramples on Malawi’s constitution, violates personal privacy and reverses the country’s commitment to human rights.

“Steven and Tiwonge love each other and have harmed no one. Yet they get a sentence more severe than some rapists, armed robbers and killers.

“With so much hatred and violence in Malawi, it is sick that the court has jailed these two men for loving and caring for each other.

“The sentence echoes the era of dictatorship under President Hastings Banda, when personal prejudices determined law enforcement, and when individual rights were crushed and dissenters persecuted,” said London-based human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell of the gay rights group OutRage!.

He was commenting on the 14 year jail sentence for homosexuality, which was handed down today against Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga in Blantyre, Malawi.

Mr Tatchell has been supporting and advocating for the jailed men since their arrest and detention in December last year; helping arrange prison visits and the delivery of food parcels, medicine, letters of support and clothes to the detained men.

In the 1970s and 80s, Mr Tatchell supported the democracy movement in Malawi and campaigned for the release of the country’s political prisoners.

“Fourteen years with hard labour could kill Steven and Tiwonge. Prison conditions are appallingly unhealthy,” he said.

“Detainees die in custody. Infectious diseases like TB are rife. Medical treatment is sub-standard. Food rations are very poor nutritional value; mostly maize porridge, beans and water, causing malnutrition. After only five months behind bars, Steven has been seriously ill and has not received proper medical treatment.”

Commenting on the verdict, Mr Tatchell added:

“The judge has violated Article 20 of Malawi’s own constitution, which guarantees equal treatment and non-discrimination to all citizens. The law under which they were convicted is a discriminatory law that only applies to same-sex relations. It is unconstitutional. The law in Malawi is not supposed to discriminate.

“Malawi’s anti-gay laws were not devised by Malawians. They were devised in London in the nineteenth century and imposed on the people of Malawi by the British colonisers and their army of occupation. Before the British came and conquered Malawi, there were no laws against homosexuality. These laws are a foreign imposition. They are not African laws.

“I expect both men will appeal against the verdict and sentence. Steven and Tiwonge’s best hope is that a higher court will overturn this unjust, cruel verdict; although a more positive outcome on appeal is uncertain, given the high-level homophobia that exists in Malawian society, including among the judiciary.

“The magistrate was biased from outset. He refused the two men bail, which is very unusual in cases of non-violent offences. In Malawi, bail is normal. It is often granted to thieves and violent criminals. Denying Steven and Tiwonge bail was an act of vindictiveness.

“I appeal to governments worldwide, especially the South African government, to condemn this harsh, bigoted judgement and to urge its reversal,” said Mr Tatchell.

Prior to the verdict, Tiwonge and Steven issued a defiant message from their prison cell. It affirmed their love for each other and thanked their supporters in Malawi and worldwide.

Tiwonge said: “I love Steven so much. If people or the world cannot give me the chance
and freedom to continue living with him as my lover, then I am better off to die here in prison. Freedom without him is useless and meaningless.”

“We have come a long way and even if our family relatives are not happy, I will not and never stop loving Tiwonge,” said Steven.

The two men’s messages were relayed from inside Chichiri Prison in Blantyre, Malawi, to Peter Tatchell of the LGBT human rights group OutRage! in London, England.

Tiwonge and Steven stressed their gratitude for the support they have received from fellow Malawians and from people around the world:

“We are thankful for the people who have rallied behind us during this difficult time. We are grateful to the people who visit and support us, which really makes us feel to be members of a human family; otherwise we would feel condemned,” said Tiwonge.

Steven added: “All the support is well appreciated. We are grateful to everybody who is doing this for us. May people please continue the commendable job…Prison life is very difficult.”

Peter Tatchell expressed his admiration of the two men:

“Steven and Tiwonge are showing immense fortitude and courage. They declared their love in a society where many people – not all – are very intolerant and homophobic. This was a very brave thing to do. Although suffering in prison, they are unbowed. They continue to maintain their love and affirm their human right to be treated with dignity and respect,” said Mr Tatchell.

“They have taken a pioneering stand for the right to love. They love each other, have harmed no one and believe that love should not be a crime. It is nobody’s business what they do in the privacy of their own home. There is no evidence that they have committed any crime under Malawian law. They should never have been put on trial. Even prior to their conviction, they had already spent nearly five months behind bars.

“OutRage! is supporting Steven and Tiwonge. For the last four months, we have arranged extra food to supplement the men’s meagre, poor quality prison rations.

“We pay tribute to the other people and organisations who are giving legal and medical assistance to the detained men. This is a huge help. Steven and Tiwonge have asked me to communicate their appreciation,” said Mr Tatchell.

Sixty-seven British MPs have signed a House of Commons Early Day Motion (EDM 564), which condemns the arrest and trial of Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga.

Amnesty International has adopted Steven and Tiwonge as Prisoners of Conscience:

Until quite recently Steven and Tiwonge did not realise that they had been adopted as Prisoners of Conscience by Amnesty International. When this news was relayed to them in prison they were, to quote one source: “Very happy with the effort made by Amnesty International to accord them this status. They offer their thanks to Amnesty.”

Tiwonge and Steven have also expressed appreciation for the protest on their behalf in London on 22 March this year.

See photos of the protest here:

See videos of the protest here:

The two men thanked London-based African and British activists who have lobbied the Malawian Ambassador and the Commonwealth Secretary-General and Human Rights Unit to seek their release and to secure medical treatment for Steven.

Steven’s condition has stabilised but he remains very ill. He is thin and weak and has jaundiced eyes, according to an eye-witness who saw him last weekend.

Tiwonge and Steven are urging continued protests to “get our release and the dropping of charges by the Malawi government.”

Write a letter to Steven and Tiwonge

Help boost their spirits. Show them you care. Send a letter or postcard of support to Steven and Tiwonge. In this difficult time, they need to know that people around the world love and support them.

Write to:

Tiwonge Chimbalanga and Steven Monjeza, Prisoners, Chichiri Prison, P.O.Box 30117, Blantyre 3, Malawi

Constitution of Malawi – Article 20:

Discrimination of persons in any form is prohibited and all persons are…guaranteed equal and effective protection against discrimination on grounds of race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, nationality, ethnic or social origin, disability, property, birth or other status.

“Or other status” means on other grounds, which includes sexual orientation.

See here:$FILE/Constitution%20Malawi%20-%20EN.pdf

African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights – Articles 2, 3 and 4:

Article 2
Every individual shall be entitled to the enjoyment of the rights and freedoms recognized and guaranteed in the present Charter without distinction of any kind such as race, ethnic group, color, sex, language, religion, political or any other opinion, national and social origin, fortune, birth or other status.

Article 3
1. Every individual shall be equal before the law. 2. Every individual shall be entitled to equal protection of the law.

Article 4
Human beings are inviolable. Every human being shall be entitled to respect for his life and the integrity of his person. No one may be arbitrarily deprived of this right.

See here:

Confirmation of Malawi’s signature, ratification and accession

Written by modernityblog

20/05/2010 at 16:12

Malawi Prisoner Steven Monjeza Is Very Ill.

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Peter Tatchell hightlight’s the plight of Steven Monjeza:

“Still not getting medical treatment – Needs hospital care

London – 19 April 2010

“Steven Monjeza remains very ill in the notorious Chichiri Prison in Blantyre, Malawi, according to people who have seen him in the last two days. I have been sent an appeal to get him medical help,” reports London-based human rights campaigner, Peter Tatchell of OutRage!

“Mr Monjeza, who is on trial with his same-sex partner, Tiwonge Chimbalanga, has been sick for more than two weeks. He is vomiting, coughing and suffering from pain and pressure in his chest. His eyes are jaundiced. He is thin and weak, with barely enough energy to smile. People who saw him at the weekend are very worried about his condition,” added Mr Tatchell.

“He needs to be admitted hospital to undergo medical tests and receive treatment. He is not getting adequate care in prison.

“Although he has not been convicted of any offence, Steven has been held on remand in an overcrowded, fetid call for nearly four months, without proper food, sanitation or medical care.

“Together with Mr Chimbalanga, Steven is being prosecuted on charges of homosexuality. They were arrested after holding an engagement ceremony last December. Such a ceremony is not illegal in Malawi and there is no evidence that they have committed any criminal homosexual acts.

“This weekend I was sent another request to get Mr Monjeza transferred to hospital.

“At first sight, some of Steven’s symptoms seem like flu. But the prison authorities have discounted this possibility. They suspected that he had TB. Steven was sent for tests. But the TB tests have come back negative. The prison authorities would not have sent him to be tested for TB if his symptoms corresponded to flu.

“Prison officials are unable to determine Steven’s illness. Although they are unsure, they are not doing further medical tests.

“Even if Steven had only bronchitis or pleurisy, we should be concerned. These can develop into pneumonia, which can sometimes be fatal.

“Steven’s poor health is confirmed by his partner, Tiwonge Chimbalanga, who has also expressed concern about Steven’s condition.

“Both men have urged that Steven receives hospital treatment as soon as possible.

“My independent sources agree. They say Mr Monjeza needs to go to hospital for a full medical examination and treatment. His health is likely to deteriorate further unless he gets medical care.

“Mr Monjeza is being held in a small cell, with up to a dozen other men. There is not enough space to sleep comfortably.

“Toilet and washing facilities are deficient.

“Mr Monjeza receives only two prison meals a day. It is always the same maize porridge with beans, which has low nutritional value. The families of other prisoners bring them food to supplement their meagre rations. But Steven and Tiwonge’s families have abandoned them. The two men say they are getting little or no assistance, apart from occasional prison visits from straight Malawian sympathisers.

“Chichiri prison was built for 800 prisoners. It currently holds nearly 1,900 inmates.

“All the prisoners are suffering in the jail’s overcrowded, sub-standard conditions. Sickness is rife, with high rates of disease and infection. The prison needs reform and upgrading for the sake of all detainees.

See this report on prison conditions from the Malawi Medical Journal:

and here:

“Chichiri jail was one of the prisons used to incarcerate Malawian dissidents who opposed the dictatorship of the western-backed anti-communist dictator, Dr Hastings Banda, from the late 1960s to the early 1990s.

“Steven and Tiwonge are being held on remand. They have not been convicted of any offence. Yet they are being treated like criminals and imprisoned with hardened felons convicted of serious crimes. Although they have never been found guilty of any crime, they have already served almost four months in jail.

“Thankfully, most of the prison guards and other prisoners seem more enlightened and compassionate that some of Malawi’s political and religious leaders. Steven and Tiwonge are not suffering homophobic abuse or ill-treatment in prison. They have friends in prison.

“Requests by Mr Monjeza and Mr Chimbalanga for bail have been turned down repeatedly, even though people accused of violent assaults and murder have been granted bail. The denial of bail for a victimless alleged crime is very unusual. It looks like they are being singled out for special victimisation by the courts.

What you can do

“Please lobby your elected representative. Get him or her to press the government of Malawi to transfer Mr Monjeza to hospital and provide him with medical treatment. Thank you,” said Mr Tatchell.

See background to the case and details of the London protest in support of Steven and Tiwonge here, including a link to protest photos:

Written by modernityblog

21/04/2010 at 13:59

Balochistan: UN Speech By Peter Tatchell

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Peter Tatchell is a tireless campaigner for human rights.

He has put himself on the line for his beliefs many times and suffered accordingly, but that doesn’t stop him from campaigning and here he is discussing the problems faced by the Baloch people.

The other YouTube video is here.

An extract of what he said:

“Mr President, thank you for giving me an opportunity to address this session.

I am a London-based human rights campaigner who has been campaigning for human rights for 43 years. For 20 of those years, I have monitored and supported the Pakistani people’s struggle for democracy, human rights and social justice, including more recently in Balochistan.

I am neither a Pakistani nor a Baloch. I have no personal or vested interest in the conflict. I address the situation in Balochistan solely as an independent, objective investigator who is committed to the defense of human rights.

I would like to begin by endorsing the recommendations of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), which urge the complete demilitarisation of occupied Balochistan, as a precondition for a negotiated political settlement to end six decades of economic neglect, ethnic persecution and military repression by successive governments in Islamabad.

Echoing the criticisms of Baloch national leaders, the HRCP says the Pakistan government’s recent peace and reconciliation package is undermined by on-going military operations and human rights abuses.

It points out that 4,000 Baloch people have been arrested and then disappeared. Only a handful have been released since the western-backed military dictator, Pervez Musharraf, was replaced by a democratically-elected civilian government in 2008.

The torture of Baloch rights campaigners also remains routine. Promises of military de-escalation are contradicted by continued army incursions and air strikes, which have resulted in many civilian casualties, and by the shooting dead of peaceful Baloch protesters, most recently in January this year.

Successive Pakistani attacks on Balochistan are estimated to have in resulted in 3,000 people killed and up to 200,000 displaced.”

Written by modernityblog

16/03/2010 at 12:51

Kill The Gays Bill.

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Peter Tatchell has highlighted this alarming article on Huff Post and the video below it, concerning the links between US Christians and those in Uganda bringing forth legislation to legitimise the murder of Gays. I hadn’t followed this issue, until now, but the fact it is going on in the 21st century, aided and abetted by US Christians is outrageous.

This is another clip from the Rachel Maddow show which explains more. It is staggering.

Written by modernityblog

10/12/2009 at 15:26

Peter Tatchell Deserves Better.

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I have followed Peter Tatchell’s political career for decades, and one thing has always struck me about him, he’s a very keen activist and highly principled.

I and others might occasionally disagree with the emphasis that he puts on certain issues, but Peter Tatchell is principled and that is rare in politics, where ends are used to justify the means.

Peter puts himself in great physical danger for his belief, and that is even rarer, so I was sadden to read the lack of support for him by posters over at Socialist Unity blog.

In fact, Peter is being attacked, for holding clear and principled views without malice, by various armchair activists and shouty “anti-imperialists”.

Peter’s column in the Guardian.

The BBC asks an all too obvious question: Is gay bashing on the rise?

Q&A: Peter Tatchell

Stand up, be counted and go to jail

Update 1: It seems that the SWP have their knives out for Peter, as suggested by a post on the SWP’s premier blog, Lenin’s Tomb. I think that partly explains the venom from some posters at SU blog, they are just following a Party “line” like mindless automatons.

Update 2: Dave Osler has chipped in with his characteristic sarcasm, although I suspect many won’t understand the none too subtle point that he’s making.

Written by modernityblog

04/11/2009 at 18:51