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Dozens of NGOs call for Ahmed Mansoor’s release on year anniversary of his arbitrary detention in UAE

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2 months 1 day

Dozens of NGOs call for Ahmed Mansoor’s release on year anniversary of his arbitrary detention in UAE

Over 20 NGOs, including Amnesty International, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and Human Rights Watch, have released a joint-statement calling upon Emirati authorities to “immediately and unconditionally” release the award-winning human rights defender Ahmed Mansoor.

Arrested on the 20th March 2017, Mansoor has been held for over a year in an unverified location without access to a lawyer and is yet to be officially charged by authorities.    

Pending his release, the statement calls upon the Emirati authorities to reveal Mansoor’s whereabouts and ensure that he is held in an official place of detention, to provide assurances that he is protected from torture and other forms of ill-treatment, and to guarantee “that he is treated in line with the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, including by giving him regular access to his family and a lawyer of his choosing.” Please find a copy of this statement with the full list of signatories in attachments.

This is but the latest in a series of actions that have taken place over the last year regarding the continued detention of Ahmed Mansoor. Shortly following his arrest last year, a coalition of UN human rights experts released a statement describing Mansoor’s detention as a “direct attack” on human rights defenders everywhere.  

In addition to this, to mark 100 days of his detention last year, a coalition of notable figures and organisations released a joint letter earlier this year calling for the immediate and unconditional release of the Emirati human rights defender. The letter was signed by dozens of academics, lawyers, authors and MPs, such as the American linguist and philosopher, Noam Chomsky, British barrister, Michael Mansfield QC, the co-leader of the Green Party, Caroline Lucas MP, and UAE torture survivor David Haigh.

Moreover, earlier this week, to coincide with the one-year anniversary of Mansoor’s detention, ICFUAE held a demonstration outside the UAE embassy in a bid to put pressure on the Emirati authorities to release the human rights defender.

The level of international activity surrounding Mansoor’s case reflects the prominent international standing he has within the human rights community. Over the years he has worked extensively with international rights organisations to raise awareness to human rights abuses in the UAE. In this capacity, he is a member of the Gulf Centre for Human Rights and has a seat on the on the advisory committee at Human Rights Watch. In 2015, he won the prestigious Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders.

As we pass the one-year anniversary of his arbitrary detention, ICFUAE reiterates its call for Ahmed Mansoor’s immediate and unconditional release. His continued detention is in violation of international law and serves no other purpose but to further stifle freedom of speech and expression in the UAE. Pending his release, however, the Emirati authorities must ensure Mansoor has access to a lawyer and adequate medical care, as well as disclose his location immediately and provide assurances that the human rights defender is protected from torture and other ill-treatment.

1. For more information, please contact the ICFUAE team at joe@icfuae.org.uk or 07979 6666 98

2. For the joint-statement, please see attachment.

3. For more information on the ICFUAE action, please see  http://icfuae.org.uk/news/one-year-icfuae-call-release-ahmed-mansoor-outside-uae-embassy-london 

4. For the statement by the UN human rights experts, please see http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-39416734 

5. For the joint-letter for thee six-month anniversary, please see https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/06/letter-calls-uae-release-ahmed-mansoor-170627203939193.html

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