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Local Amnesty International Group

You probably already know something about Amnesty International. Perhaps you know that it is the leading organisation campaigning for people’s human rights. And perhaps you’re familiar with its symbol of a candle wrapped in barbed wire? But here are three things maybe you don’t know:

1. Human rights are for everyone

“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights”, says the UN Declaration on Human Rights. This amazing document, written almost 60 years ago, is the bedrock of international human rights legislation and sets out common standards that Governments must enforce. Amnesty has worked since 1961 to hold Governments to these standards. Today this work continues. With terrorism featuring so high on politicians’ agendas, many of these standards are under attack – we need to guard them fiercely or risk losing rights that were so hard fought for in the aftermath of World War II. Amnesty continues to campaign to: * End extra-judicial executions and 'disappearances’ * Protect the human rights of refugees and asylum seekers * Protecting the human rights of non-combatants in armed conflicts * Ensure there are fair and prompt trials for all political prisoners * Obtain the release of all prisoners of conscience

2. Every letter counts

Amnesty’s campaigns depend on individual members writing letters to put pressure on those that can help stop human rights abuses. One letter can be ignored, but Amnesty draws on its 1.8 million members in over 150 countries and territories in every region of the world to create an avalanche of letters to put cases in the spotlight. And it works. Prisoners of conscience have been released. Death sentences have been commuted. Torturers have been brought to justice. Governments have been persuaded to change their laws and practices.

3. Next time you go to the pub, take a pen!

The Bristol Group of Amnesty International holds a pub night every fourth Tuesday of the month starting at 7.30pm in the Miners Arms in St Werburghs. This is your chance to sign letters to support Amnesty’s latest case work, chat with like-minded people and drink beer – now that is the kind of campaigning you can really enjoy!

More information

For more information on the pub night or the Bristol Group go to Amnesty Bristol and its other activities contact Molly Anderson (07736 433891) or Sally Heaven (07742930169). You can join Amnesty’s UK section or learn more about our campaigns from the Amnesty International website at Amnesty International

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