Reprieve (organisation)

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Reprieve is any of a number of not-for-profit organisations around the world which work against the death penalty, with a particular focus on legal support for those facing the death penalty or held in secret prisons around the world. The founding Reprieve organisation is in the UK, and there are also organisations in the United States, Australia and the Netherlands, with additional supporters and volunteers worldwide.

Reprieve UK[edit]

Reprieve aims to use the law to enforce the human rights of prisoners, from death row to Guantánamo Bay.

The first and largest of the Reprieve organisations, Reprieve UK, was founded in 1999, one year after the death penalty was officially abolished in the UK (although having not been exercised since 1964), by human rights lawyer Clive Stafford Smith.[1] Smith has represented over 300 prisoners facing the death penalty in the southern United States and has helped secure the release of 65 Guantánamo Bay prisoners as well as others across the world detained in places such as Bagram Theatre Internment Facility, Afghanistan, who claim to have been tortured[2] by the United States government.

Reprieve currently works to represent 15 prisoners in Guantánamo Bay, as well as an evolving caseload of death row clients around the world. It investigates international complicity in renditions[3] and most recently, has started working with the Foundation for Fundamental Rights[4] in Pakistan, aiming to create conversation around the use of drones there.[5][6]

Reprieve UK has twenty-five staff in London and seven Fellows in the US and Pakistan. Its patrons include Martha Lane Fox, Jon Snow, Alan Bennett and Julie Christie

Current cases include Libya's Sami al-Saadi,[7][8] stateless Palestinian Abu Zubaydah,[9] Linda Carty,[10] Yunus Rahmatullah[11] and Krishna Maharaj.[12]

Recent cases include Samantha Orobator,[13] Binyam Mohamed,[14] Muhammad Saad Iqbal,[15] and Akmal Shaikh,[16] an EU national executed by the Chinese government.

Reprieve US[edit]

Reprieve US was founded in 2001 by anti-death penalty lawyers in New Orleans, Louisiana, inspired by the UK organisation.

Reprieve Australia[edit]

Reprieve Australia was founded in 2001 by a group of Melbourne lawyers. It works to support those facing the death penalty around the world, with a particular focus on work in the Southern states of the US.

Reprieve Netherlands[edit]

Reprieve Netherlands is a new organisation, founded in 2006, twenty-four years after the Netherlands abolished the death penalty, by a group of Dutch people who had previously worked in capital defence offices in the United States. It shares the goals of the other Reprieve organisations.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Visionaries for a just and peaceful world. Visions of the Future: six stories. "Clive Stafford Smith : bringing the rule of law back to Guantanamo Bay". Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust. 1904 – 2004 Centennial Projects.
  2. ^ Terror suspects held illegally' in Afghanistan prison named by charity. By Richard Norton-Taylor. The Guardian, 15 April 2010.
  3. ^ Rendition on Record. By Crofton Black and Lydia Medland. Reprieve/Access Info Europe, 19 December 2011.
  4. ^ About Foundation for Fundamental Rights
  5. ^ High court rejects first UK challenge to CIA’s drone campaign. The Bureau of Investigative Journalism. By Alice K Ross. 22 December 2012.
  6. ^ UK: Hearing into CIA drones would dent US ties . By David Stringer. The Huffington Post. 25 October 2012.
  7. ^ Government pays Libyan dissident's family £2.2m over MI6-aided rendition. Sami al-Saadi, wife and four children were secretly flown from Hong Kong to Tripoli where he was tortured by Gaddafi police. By Richard Norton-Taylor. The Guardian, 13 December 2012
  8. ^ Case Sami al Saadi
  9. ^ Case Abu Zubaydah
  10. ^ Case Linda Carty
  11. ^ Foreign Secretary v Rahmatullah: Reprieve's dodgy press release, by Carl Gardner. Head of legal, 6 November 2012]
  12. ^ Krishna Maharaj, Jailed Briton, Appeals Murder Conviction Claiming He Was Framed By Miami Police Reuters / The Huffington Post, 20 December 2012.
  13. ^ British woman could face Laos death penalty. CNN, 4 May 2009.
  14. ^ Guantanamo inmate sues US company. A British resident held by the US is suing a company for allegedly organising flights that took him to Guantanamo Bay. BBC, 4 June 2007.
  15. ^ Complaint over British role in extraordinary rendition. MP demands information on role in secret US flights. Human rights group calls for detainees to be named. By Duncan Campbell and Richard Norton-Taylor. The Guardian, 3 June 2008.
  16. ^ "Akmal Shaikh, mentally ill British national who has been sentenced to death in China, will today plead for his life in court". Reprieve.org.uk. Retrieved 2011-12-20. 

External links[edit]