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Write an email or tweet, save a life—Amnesty International’s Write for Rights campaign


Write an email or tweet, save a life—Amnesty International’s Write for Rights campaign


These days it feels like the world is perpetually on fire, there’s a hurricane somewhere, the threat of civil war elsewhere and no end in sight. With the advent of smartphones and social media news spreads faster than ever, in just a few seconds one can know exactly what’s happening on the other side of the world. But, this deluge of information can be overwhelming. Especially when all you see is a litany of injustice. It’s hard feeling powerless to help other people when you see stories of their suffering plastered across your feeds. But, there is a small way you can help make a difference.


Since 2001, Amnesty International has run the Write for Rights campaign convincing people from around the world to write a letter, email or tweet to powerful people in various governments in an effort to pressurise them into stopping human rights abuses.

This campaign is back in the spotlight after one of the people that benefited from this campaign recently wrote about it for VICE News. Ben Charlie Smoke is a British journalist and activist who was convicted for terror related offences, in 2018, after he and 14 other activists peacefully blockaded a flight that was going to deport 57 people at risk of violence, persecution, trafficking, torture and death to Nigeria and Ghana. He faced a lifetime in prison for trying to protect vulnerable people, through peaceful protest. But, Amnesty International supporters wrote in to the Crown Prosecution service in thousands and that pressure helped to save him from wrongfully being jailed.

This campaign has managed to save many other lives by coordinating international pressure from ordinary citizens.

Moses Akatugba, a 15- year old, was arrested by the Nigerian army and was shot in the hand and tortured in effort to force a false confession out of him, before he was sentenced to death for, allegedly, stealing mobile phones. He was released from prison after more than 800,000 people wrote to the Nigerian authorities, in 2014. In another successful case of this campaign, after 400,000 actions taken by people in solidarity with the Indigenous community of Grassy Narrows who were suffering from mercury poisoning, in Canada, a $19.5 million (CDN) agreement to build a mercury treatment centre was finally signed on the 2nd of April, 2020.

One of the people that is currently featured in the Write for Rights campaign is Pakistani human rights researcher, Idris Khattak

He was disappeared while investigating enforced disappearances, in November 2019. At present, after endless searching by his daughter and mounting international pressure, it is known that he is in the custody of Pakistani authorities and to be tried in a military court.

By joining this campaign, with a little bit of time and a few clicks you can possibly help people like Idris Khattak and his family around the world and maybe help make the world a little less miserable.

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