Target: President Barack Obama
Goal: Advocate for the release of gay couple sentenced to 25 years in Kuwait prison.
Two Detroit lesbian women have been sentenced to 25 years imprisonment for an alleged minor, drug-related offense while serving as military contractors in Kuwait. The two women, Monique Coverson and Larissa Joseph, were arrested during a police raid of their home. Reportedly, the women were in possession of a synthesized, marijuana-like substance, K2, that is entirely legal in Kuwait, but were nonetheless subsequently charged with possession of illegal drugs.
The amount of “drugs” the women allegedly possessed has changed over time in police’s statements, increasing in quantity with subsequent reports. The police now claim that the women were in possession of a pound of marijuana, which the women claim police planted on them following the arrest. The couple’s prison sentence has also grown, starting as a 30-day prison sentence and incrementally growing to a total of 25 years in prison for these women. These charges in general have been described by the women’s families as “trumped up.”
Many believe that these women were targeted because of their sexual orientation. The women are a lesbian couple; though not specifically illegal, homosexuality is considered seriously unacceptable in Kuwait society. That these women are ostensibly being held in prison for their sexual orientation is a glaring violation of basic human rights, and one that demands global attention and advocacy. Demand that our President advocate for the release of these women from prison.
Dear President Obama,
Two American women, Monique Coverson and Larissa Joseph, are currently imprisoned in Kuwait, sentenced to 25 years imprisonment for alleged drug possession. Many believe this sentence is too harsh for the crime that was allegedly committed, and others believe the charges themselves to be grossly exaggerated. The prison sentence has grown from a 30-day imprisonment to a 25 year one. Additionally, these women were subjected to a terrifying police raid of their home. We feel that all of this is extremely unjust.
Because homosexuality, despite not being explicitly against the law, is viewed in a negative light in Kuwait, suspicions have been raised that these women were imprisoned as a punishment for their sexual orientation. This constitutes a gross violation of human rights that deserves global attention and advocacy. We, the undersigned, ask that you immediately begin advocating for the release of these women from prison.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Hans