Amnesty International is a global movement of more than 3 million supporters, members and activists in over 150 countries. They work with and for each other to defend human rights. They believe that human rights abuses anywhere are the concern of people everywhere. Amnesty’s members are the cornerstone of these efforts. They take up human rights issues through letter-writing, online and offline campaigning, demonstrations, vigils and direct lobbying of those with power and influence.
UNITED AGAINST INJUSTICE
Together we campaign to:
* defend freedom of expression
* protect women’s rights
* abolish the death penalty
* demand justice for crimes against humanity
* demand corporate accountability where companies have abused people’s right INDEPENDENT AND DEMOCRATIC
Amnesty International is:
* independent of any government, political ideology, economic interest or religion * financially autonomous, and are funded mainly by membership and public donations history
Ignition for a movement:
28 May 1961, Amnesty International began with one man’s outrage and his courage to do something about it. After learning of two Portuguese students imprisoned for raising a toast to freedom, British lawyer Peter Benenson published an article, “The Forgotten Prisoners” in the Observer newspaper. That article launched the “Appeal for Amnesty 1961”, a worldwide campaign that provoked a remarkable response. Reprinted in newspapers across the world, his call to action resonated with the values and aspirations of people everywhere. This was the genesis of Amnesty International. Since it had a long back history and victories, those are put it in the timeline.
DATE| EVENTS| 10 Dec 1961| "A plea for a million innocents"The first symbolic candle surrounded by barbed wire is lit in a Human Rights Service in the church of St-Martin-in-the-Fields, London, UK. Since the beginning of the movement, famous names have supported the cause.
1 Jan 1962| Independent research beginsAmnesty International takes its first mission to Ghana in January, followed by Czechoslovakia in February (on behalf of a prisoner of conscience, Archbishop Josef Beran), and then to Portugal and East Germany| 1 Jul 1962| A permanent organization is bornAmnesty International groups are started in Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Greece, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, and the USA. At a conference in Belgium, all the groups decide to set up a permanent organization that will be known as “Amnesty International”.| 31 Oct 1962| Observing political trials in South AfricaPart of a letter from Nelson Mandela thanking Amnesty International for sending Louis Blom-Cooper to attend the trial. | 10 Dec 1962| Human Rights Day
1 Jul 1963| The International Secretariat is established In LONDONSeán MacBride, Irish human rights advocate, is elected Chairman of the newly established International Executive Committee (IEC). In 1963 Amnesty International comprises 350 groups. The two-year total includes 770 prisoners adopted, 140 released. | 1 Aug 1964| First recognition by the United Nations The UN give Amnesty International consultative status | 1 Sep 1964| New challenges: At an International Council Meeting in Canterbury, UK, Amnesty International debates and rejects the proposal to recognize as Prisoners of Conscience people who use or advocate the use of force in opposing oppressive regimes. This means people like Nelson Mandela are not recognized as Prisoners of Conscience, although campaigns continue against the inhumane conditions of his imprisonment. | 1 Jan 1965| New campaign started for Prisoners of Conscience: Every month, postcards are sent to prisoners, to show them that their stories are known across the world. | 1 Apr 1965| Amnesty International begins its campaign against the death penalty| 1 Jul 1965| Recognition from other regional organizations in...