Prison conditions

SRI LANKA: An appeal to the President to intervene so as to prevent another beheading – the case of Mr. Wengadasalam Sudeshkar who faces the death sentence in Qatar

We reproduce below the letter written to His Excellency the President of Sri Lanka, the Hon. Mahinda Rajapaksa regarding the case of Mr. Wengadasalam Sudeshkar who faces the death sentence by beheading in Doha, Qatar. The AHRC urges its readers to write to the President of Sri Lanka at the address shown below to urgently […]

BURMA: Dossier of cases from Kachin State released

(Hong Kong, January21, 2013) The Asian Human Rights Commission on Monday released a special dossier of recent cases of arrest, detention, torture and extortion carried out by Burma military and police personnel in Kachin State. The 36 cases from 2012 have all been conducted under the Unlawful Associations Act, 1908, a draconian colonial-era statute under […]

MYANMAR: Respect appeal of deceased Phyo Wai Aung to have his name cleared

An Open Letter from the Asian Human Rights Commission to the chairpersons of four parliamentary committees Daw Aung San Suu Kyi Chairwoman, Pyithu Hluttaw Rule of Law & Tranquillity Committee Thura U Aung Ko Chairman, Pyithu Hluttaw Judicial & Legal Affairs Committee U Aung Nyein Chairman, Amyotha Hluttaw Public Complaints & Petitions Committee Dr Aye […]

SAUDI ARABIA/SRI LANKA: Sri Lankan woman executed today in Saudi Arabia

The International Commission against the Death Penalty (ICDP) condemns today’s execution of Rizana Nafeek, a Sri Lankan housemaid, in Saudi Arabia. She was beheaded in Dawadmi province near Riyadh. Rizana, a teenage domestic worker, was condemned to death after a four-month-old baby boy she was bottle-feeding choked and died in 2005. According to her birth […]

SAUDI ARABIA/SRI LANKA: The imminent danger of the execution of Rizana Nafeek

According to the news received from Saudi Arabia Rizana Nafeek, who has been the Dawadami Prison since 2005 may be executed at any moment. This was revealed to the BBC Sinhala Service by Dr. Kifaya Iftekhar, who is based in Saudi Arabia and who has been looking after the interests of Rizana for several years […]

SRI LANKA: Why are we doing this to ourselves?

We have self-made our destabilization. We are destabilizing ourselves and blaming others for destabilizing us. Our recent history is a history of decay. With each year, we are destabilized more than the previous year; our social organization has decayed more than the  previous year. Let us take our parliament, our police, our prosecutor’s  department (Attorney […]

PHILIPPINES: Falsely charged Sulu activist appeals from prison

(Hong Kong, December 18, 2012) The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) is publishing below a letter written in prison from Temogen “Cocoy” Tulawie. Tulawie is an indigenous human rights activist from Sulu, southern Mindanao, now in prison facing fabricated murder charges in Davao City. In his letter received by the AHRC, Tulawie asked that the people of […]

PHILIPPINES: Abadilla Five–the AHRC welcomes ‘conditional pardon’

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) is pleased that Leila de Lima, secretary of the Department of Justice (DoJ), has recommended to President Benigno Aquino III the granting of a “conditional pardon” to the Abadilla Five. The Abadilla Five: Lenido Lumanog, Augusto Santos, Cesar Fortuna, Joel and Rameses de Jesus, are serving terms of life […]

THAILAND: Call for trial observers for Somyot

Next week, the Criminal Court will resume its schedule on Somyot’s case on 19 December 2012 after it has been delayed for three months without informed explanation. Prior to this, the Constitutional Court also ruled that Article 112 is not against the constitutionality. Both information made the lawyer as well as the family grave concerns […]

SRI LANKA: PSC offers the CJ an inquiry without witnesses

The Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) inquiring into the allegations against the Chief Justice, Dr Shirani Bandaranayake in a surprising and shocking move informed her that during this inquiry no witnesses would be produced and therefore there would be no room for cross examination. An ‘inquiry’ without witnesses naturally cannot be an inquiry at all. The […]

BURMA: Court issues landmark ruling on death in police custody; two accused police themselves die under dubious circumstances

In a landmark ruling, a court in Burma has rejected the police version of events that led to the death of a man in their custody, and has opened the door to a charge of murder to be brought against the officers involved. In its findings of 9 November 2012, a copy of which the […]

SRI LANKA: The killing of 27 prisoners at the Welikade Prison in Colombo

The Asian Human Rights Commission has written to the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions regarding the incident at the Welikada Prison in Sri Lanka on November 9, 2012. The full text of the letter may be seen below: Mr. Christof Heyns Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions C/o OHCHR Palais […]

SRI LANKA: Reflections on the killings in the prisons and the impeachment of the Chief Justice

Basil Fernando Humankind has at least a few millenniums of experience in keeping prisons. It is part of the unfortunate predicament of humanity that there is this need to have prisons. However, over these long years, through bitter experiences, humanity has learned to lessen the suffering involved for the inmates of prisons and to make […]

SRI LANKA: Sandya Ekneligoda harassed

The harassment of Ms. Sandya Ekneligoda by the government’s supporters in Geneva and by the Attorney General’s department, for joining the UN Human Rights Council Mrs. Sandya Ekneligoda was one of the speakers during a side event held on 19th March 2012 during the 19th sessions of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. The […]

INDONESIA: Authorities refuse to treat political prisoner with tumour

Dear friends, The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information regarding the condition of Kimanus Wenda, a political prisoner at Nabire prison, Papua, who has a tumor in his stomach and must be operated on. Although Indonesian law clearly notes that it is the state’s obligation to provide medical fees, the Papua legal and […]

PHILIPPINES: Inability to protect has created a ‘parallel system’

A Statement by the Asian Human Rights Commission on the Occasion of the International Human Rights Day, December 10, 2011 The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) today published its 25-page report containing its analyses on what it has observed as the irreparable ‘social and systemic impact’ of the ongoing violations of human rights in the […]

SRI LANKA: International human rights agencies failed to notice the collapse of the Sri Lanka’s public institutions of justice

A Statement by the Asian Human Rights Commission on the Occasion of the International Human Rights Day, December 10, 2011 The international community, including leading human rights agencies and organisations, has failed to understand the depth of collapse of rule of law in Sri Lanka and have failed to make any effective intervention in this […]

BURMA: Abuses remain “systemic, entrenched”, AHRC warns

(Hong Kong, December 9, 2011) Despite signs of political change and the easing of restrictions on freedom of expression in Burma, rights abuses remain “systemic, deeply entrenched and vast in scale”, the Asian Human Rights Commission said today in its annual State of Human Rights in Asia report.   The 17-page Burma report, entitled “From blinkered […]

INDIA: Human rights a utopia without justice

A Statement by the Asian Human Rights Commission on the Occasion of the International Human Rights Day, December 10, 2011 The state of human rights in a country is directly proportional to the extent of justice achieved in that jurisdiction. Justice is not a physically quantifiable concept. It is “truth in action” as held by […]

PAKISTAN: The government dodges the international community on civil and political rights

A Statement by the Asian Human Rights Commission on the Occasion of the International Human Rights Day, December 10, 2011 The full report is available for download at The state has become dysfunctional in providing basic human rights to the people. Though the parliament exists it either cannot assert its constitutional duties or does not […]