During our morning Service on 15th December, cards of support and solidarity were written to:
Afghan Women Skills Development Centre, which was set up to tackle violence and inequality and to bring about postive change for women in Afghanistan.
AWSDC provides training for police officers who work with female survivors of violence, raises awareness about women’s rights and runs several shelters for women.
The staff who carry out this work face considerable risk, personal threats and often attacks.
Eskinder Nega, a journalist serving an 18 year prison sentence in Ethiopia for ‘terrorism offences’ after he criticised the government and called for freedom of expression in speeches and articles.
This is the eighth time he has been arrested because of his activities as a journalist. His wife, Derkalem Fasil was also trïed for treason and their son Nafkot was born in prison
Laisa Santos Sampaio, a member of an environmental campaigning group in Brazil. In May 2011 her brother and sister, both environmental campaigners, were shot dead by contract killers. Two men were convicted but a third was aquitted and lives in the same community as Laisa. She believes that her, and other associates, are responsible for the death threats which she frequently receives.
Laisa is a high profile critic of illegal logging and charcoal burning activities in her district but receives little protection from the authorities. She currently lives outside of her community, for safety reasons.
Jabeur Mejri, serving a seven and a half year prison sentence for publishing articles and pictures of the Prophet Mohammed on his Facebook page .
He was arrested in Tunisia after two lawyers saw the posts and made a complaint. The court ruled that the posts were ‘insulting to Islam and Muslims’.