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Updates from Fair Trials

Arrest of Pussy Riot's Aysoltan Niyazova puts INTERPOL Red Notices under scrutiny again

Aysoltan Niyazova, a Turkmen dissident and a member of the Russian feminist punk band Pussy Riot, was recently arrested in Croatia. This was reportedly on the basis of an INTERPOL Red Notice issued at the request of the Turkmenistani authorities. Although she has been released, Niyazova still faces the risk of extradition to one of the most authoritarian countries in the world.

Cases like Niyazova’s aren’t uncommon. Authoritarian regimes know that INTERPOL Red Notices cause serious difficulties for their critics exiled abroad, and that they can put them in serious danger.

If INTERPOL fails to prevent a Red Notice being issued against a high profile activist like Niyazova, then how can we trust that it has the systems in place to prevent abuse? The only way the agency can repair its damaged reputation is to be more transparent.

Read our press release here
Find out more about the abuse of Red Notices

Fair Trials calls on UK Prime Minister to retract comments about lawyers
Footage from a Cabinet meeting last week shows Boris Johnson saying that lawyers helping asylum seekers who faced deportation to Rwanda were “abetting the work of gangs”. We have urged the Prime Minister to retract these comments.

“Everyone – including the Prime Minister, who himself was recently accused of criminal wrongdoing – has a right to access legal assistance where their rights are threatened.  This is particularly important when individuals at risk of persecution face cruel, inhumane, and unlawful treatment by the UK authorities,” said Fair Trials’ CEO Norman L. Reimer.
Read our full statement here

US congress should pass legislation to protect habeas corpus review

We have called for remedial legislature in the wake of a ruling by the US Supreme Court. The decision in Shinn v. Ramirez could lead to two men being executed despite evidence that there were flaws in the investigations and trials that led to their convictions.

The ruling undermines the constitutional right that an accused person should have access to effective assistance of counsel. It is another in a long line of attacks on the rights of individuals to challenge a state conviction that is obtained in violation of fundamental constitutional rights.

Read our statement here
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