"Operation Liberty Shield": Attack on Asylum-Seekers' Rights.

The Oldest Soul, Vendredi, Avril 11, 2003 - 12:38

Amnesty International

Amnesty International calls on citizens of the world to protest US Homeland Security decision to severely limit rights of asylum-seekers...

The rights of asylum-seekers in the US have been placed in jeopardy following the US government's decision to order the mandatory detention of people from certain countries seeking asylum on arrival in the US.

While this policy to target certain asylum-seekers for detention is a temporary one, it includes no safeguards and is blatantly discriminatory. Although the US government has indicated that there will be "limited humanitarian exceptions", these have not been defined.

"Operation Liberty Shield" could leave thousands of traumatized, men, women and children languishing in US detention centres and jails for many months, not for having committed a crime, but simply because they looked to the US for protection.

Please send faxes or letters as soon as possible to Tom Ridge, Secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security. You might find it helpful to base your appeal on the sample letter below:

Dear Secretary Ridge

I am deeply concerned about the Department of Homeland Security's recent decision to enact Operation Liberty Shield. It is a decision that will put at further risk the rights and liberties of the very people who are now most in need of your country's protection.

Operation Liberty Shield, according to your department, allows immigration authorities to detain certain asylum applicants "from nations where al-Qaeda, al-Qaeda sympathisers, and other terrorist groups are known to have operated" "for the duration of their processing period." .

While I recognize the US government's obligation to protect its citizens, I fail to see how the mandatory detention of certain groups of asylum-seekers meets its stated objective of protecting US security, given that it targets people on the basis of nationality rather than on the basis of an individualised assessment of risk.

The UNHCR recently pointed out to the US government that asylum-seekers who reach the US have often escaped acts of violence and persecution, and have proven time and again that they are the victims, not the perpetrators, of these attacks. They are looking to your country for protection; it is your duty to protect, not to deny, their rights and their liberties.

Mandatory detention of asylum-seekers is also barred by international standards, which state that the detention of asylum-seekers should normally be avoided and is justified only in limited cases prescribed by law.

I therefore urge you to review urgently the policy under Operation Liberty Shield of detaining all asylum-seekers of particular nationalities. Any detention decisions should be made on a case by case basis, and subject to effective and independent review in line with international human rights standards. In particular, detention should not be on the basis of nationality. I ask you to ensure that each person claiming asylum has a full and fair opportunity to present their asylum claims, and not to deport anyone with a well-founded fear of persecution. In those cases where detention is necessary, I urge that you house asylum-seekers in conditions appropriate to their status and not in local prisons or jails.

Yours sincerely,

Appeals to:

The Honorable Tom Ridge
Secretary of Homeland Security
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Naval Security Station
Nebraska and Massachusetts Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20528
Fax: +1 202 282 8404

Salutation: Dear Secretary Ridge

Amnesty International is a worldwide campaigning movement that works to promote internationally recognized human rights.

Dossier G20
  Nous vous offrons plusieurs reportages indépendants et témoignages...

Très beau dessin: des oiseaux s'unissent pour couper une cloture de métal, sur fonds bleauté de la ville de Toronto.
Liste des activités lors de ce
« contre-sommet » à Toronto

Vous pouvez aussi visiter ces médias alternatifs anglophones...

Centre des médias Alternatifs Toronto

Media Co-op Toronto

Toronto Community Mobilization
(en Anglais)

CMAQ: Vie associative

Collectif à Québec: n'existe plus.

Impliquez-vous !


Ceci est un média alternatif de publication ouverte. Le collectif CMAQ, qui gère la validation des contributions sur le Indymedia-Québec, n'endosse aucunement les propos et ne juge pas de la véracité des informations. Ce sont les commentaires des Internautes, comme vous, qui servent à évaluer la qualité de l'information. Nous avons néanmoins une Politique éditoriale , qui essentiellement demande que les contributions portent sur une question d'émancipation et ne proviennent pas de médias commerciaux.

This is an alternative media using open publishing. The CMAQ collective, who validates the posts submitted on the Indymedia-Quebec, does not endorse in any way the opinions and statements and does not judge if the information is correct or true. The quality of the information is evaluated by the comments from Internet surfers, like yourself. We nonetheless have an Editorial Policy , which essentially requires that posts be related to questions of emancipation and does not come from a commercial media.