Target: Omar al-Bashir, President of Sudan
Goal: Prevent Sudan from deporting asylum-seekers back to Eritrea.
The Sudanese government recently deported at least 442 asylum-seekers, including 6 registered refugees, to Eritrea, where they will be at great risk of human rights violations. Sign the petition and tell Sudan that it must respect the rights of refugees by not returning them to a country where they may be the targets of government persecution.
Eritrea’s government is incredibly oppressive, prompting many of its citizens to flee to neighboring countries. In recent years, the government has only become more restrictive of free speech and the right to protest. It also has a reputation for arbitrary detentions, torture, and politically-motivated arrests. Hundreds of students and other protesters have been killed by security forces since last fall. Additionally, all citizens under 50 are required to complete military service, and many are forced to serve longer than the 18 months prescribed by law. In this climate, Eritreans who leave the country are seen as deserters and are potentially subject to criminal prosecution and harsh punishment.
It is a violation of international human rights standards to knowingly return refugees to a country where they face risks to their safety and well-being. Sign the petition and demand that Sudan halt any further deportations and allow refugees to seek protection.
Dear President Bashir,
I am writing to express my deep disappointment in the recent deportation of 442 Eritreans back to their homeland. I urge you to halt any further deportations and to allow refugees to seek protection within your borders in line with international human rights laws.
In recent years, the human rights situation in Eritrea has only deteriorated as the government cracks down on free speech and the right to protest. Since last fall, hundreds of students and other protesters have been killed by security forces, and many citizens are desperate to escape a country also known for arbitrary detentions, torture, and politically-motivated arrests.
Furthermore, military service is compulsory in Eritrea, and it is often extended beyond the required 18 months. Those who flee the oppressive conditions in the country are often portrayed as military deserters, making them subject to punishment and ill-treatment.
International human rights laws state that refugees must be allowed to seek protection in other countries, and that countries may not deport refugees who would face unsafe conditions at home. I am deeply disappointed in Sudan for failing to uphold these obligations, and I urge you to ensure that no other refugees are forced into unsafe situations in their homelands.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Dazzle D