Daedalus escaping from the labyrinthReady-Made
Human Rights Letters

Here are short letters that you can easily print and mail.

Select the address and text; copy and paste them into Word or whatever you use for writing. Arrange on the page to your liking.

Even better is to spend a few moments individualizing the text. You could change words, add your own remarks, use different points from the fuller information given.
A short letter in simple language is most likely to be understood. Stay polite.

Get back to us if you have a question. Or if you have the luck to receive a reply—it could be important. We'd love to know that you've written.

—Guy Ottewell and Tilly Lavenás, founder members of the Amnesty International groups of Greenville, South Carolina, and Lyme Regis, England.

YOU CAN RECEIVE NEW APPEALS BY EMAIL. Please go to http://groups.google.com/group/humanrightsletters
By clicking "Join this group" (at the right) you can become a member of our “Google Group” and will receive sample letters whenever we have them ready.

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Updates on past cases

Do letters do any good?

These “remhurls” have been sent by email to a list of friends at irregular intervals (monthly, sometimes less, sometimes more) since 1996. Since 2008 we have used this better method of distribution. We are responsible for them; they are not an official production of Amnesty International, Survival International, or any other of our sources.

You may submit a letter appeal for possible use. Please make it easy for us: Keep it short. Provide a summary of the fuller information (which we like to get in chronological order). Expect to be edited. Provide a web link if possible, or a citation of the authority for the information, e.g. for an Amnesty International Urgent Action, its number, date, and "write no later than" date. Send to guy@universalworkshop.com

Another resource for easily sending human-rights letters

Universal Workshop home page

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The first letter is recent. Others below are some long-term cases on which we keep working. More letters on them are always needed.

King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud
The Custodian of the two Holy Mosques
Office of His Majesty the King
Royal Court, Riyadh
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Your Majesty,

I was appalled that Raif Badawi was sentenced to flogging with one thousand lashes, and that the first fifty lashes were actually administered, on January 9. It is to your credit that no more rounds of flogging have taken place so far.

Please make sure that this barbarous punishment is completely canceled, and that Raif Badawi is freed. He is a prisoner of conscience, punished for exercising his right to freedom of expression.

Raif's story, and more addresses to which to send your message.

Chairman Ba Te Er
People's Government of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region
Hohhot City
Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region
People's Republic of China

I was pleased to learn that Hada was moved out of prison on November 17. However, he is still kept in a place where he has no freedom of movement and is not with his family.
He has now been under imprisonment and virtual imprisonment ever since 1995.
I ask that you act with proper legality and release Hada unconditionally.
He is a prisoner of conscience, punished for upholding the rights of ethnic Mongol people.

Hada, a scholar and bookshop owner, was imprisoned in a remote town from Dec. 10 1995 to Dec. 10 2010 for advocating the rights of Mongols, now a minority in Chinese-ruled Inner Mongolia. Besides 15 years of imprisonment (under conditions which have left him with 10 kinds of illness), his sentence included a further 4 years of limited political rights. At his date of release he was instead moved to various places, at first unknown, in the capital. It now appears this was to be his time of "limited political rights". After four years, we learned on Dec. 10 2014 of his "release". This was premature: he had been moved out of a "black jail" but into an apartment building, still far from his family, under surveillance and with no freedom of movement. The persecution of Hada and his wife and son appear to continue because they refuse to accept guilt and keep quiet. SMHRIC (the Southern Mongolia Human Rights Information Center, in New York) has sent us a video made by Hada, in which he states his continued determination to maintain his beliefs and to sue the authorities for their many illegal actions.

RELEASED! See our Updates page.

posted 2014 Aug 9

Lic. Jesús Murillo Karam
Paseo de la Reforma 211-213
Col. Cuauhtémoc
México D.F., C.P. 06500

Señor Procurador General,

I urge you to investigate immediately the tragic case of Ángel Amílcar Colón Quevedo, and see to it that he is released from imprisonment at Tijuana. Ideally he should receive compensation.

Yours respectfully and very sincerely,

You can email to the Procurator General: ofproc@pgr.gob.mx

posted 2014 Apr 7

HE President Dilma Rousseff
Presidente da República Federativa do Brasil
Gabinete do Presidente
Palácio do Planalto
Praça dos Três Poderes
70150-900 Brasília DF

Your Excellency,
    It is reported that the lands of the remaining indigenous peoples of Brazil are still being destroyed for roads, dams, logging, ranching, and oil s extraction.
    If this is not stopped, even more tribes will be wiped out.
    They are dependent on the forests in which they live, and the previously uncontacted peoples, especially, can be killed by diseases from outside.
    I urge you to ensure the rights of these peoples. Their lands must be demarcated and protected so that no more is stolen from them.
    Yours respectfully and sincerely,

Survival International has a page on the contrast between Brazil's sunny image and its decimation of its native peoples:

RELEASED! See our Updates page.

Sadakazu Tanigaki,
1-1-1 Kasumigaseki,Chiyoda-ka
Tokyo 100-8977,

Dear Minister of Justice,
     I write to you about Hakamada Iwao. His case, as you know, is internationally notorious.
     He was convicted on the basis of a forced confession. The chief judge at the original trial believes that he is innocent.
     Hakamada Iwao has been on death row longer than anyone else in the world: 44 years, and 28 of them in solitary confinement. Under Japan's present rules, he could be hanged at any time, without warning. He has become insane.
     He should not be executed. He should be granted a new trial.
     I put it to you that Japan should reform its cruel death-row system. Japan should introduce a moratorium on the death penalty, joining the 140 countries that have put an ended to this primitive practice.
     Yours respectfully and sincerely,

Forced to confess, 44 years in solitary or almost-solitary, always under the shadow of the noose