Here, There and Everywhere

Posts tagged ‘Azerbaijan’

From Poverty to Entrepreneur

Dear Gabriel

There’s an amazing group of women you’re not supposed to know about. Rising from outcasts to community leaders, hundreds of thousands of empowered women are changing the course of business history – of world history. These entrepreneurs are breaking the chains of poverty and oppression. Today, FINCA invites you to join them in shaping a new future.

Many commercial banks refuse to give these women access to credit or any other financial services, but FINCA knows they are as capable of running successful businesses as men. We also know that women are more likely to repay their loans on time. By providing this credit, FINCA is fueling a revolutionary approach to ending poverty.

Our faith in women productively managing their loans and businesses is leading to thousands of newly EMPOWERED women.

Time and time again, our clients tell us that our faith in them has led to economic independence and a sense of dignity and pride never experienced before. This new self-esteem transforms women’s power relationships, resulting in greater respect from their husbands and children, and enabling them to become leaders in their communities.

One measure of the sense of empowerment our clients feel can be found in the heightened sense of self-determination they have reported to us in the surveys we have conducted with them:

94% of FINCA Malawi clients interviewed felt able or mostly able to make important decisions on their own that could change the course of their lives.

90% of FINCA clients in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan felt able or mostly able to make important decisions on their own.

By supporting FINCA today you can empower women to shape futures free from poverty for themselves and their children. Please give generously. Your support is greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,

Vice President,
New Business Development
FINCA.org

Post on Facebook, Go to Jail!

From Amnesty International USA

Dear Gabriel,

Arrested for posting a note to Facebook?! If there was ever a need for a “Dislike” button on Facebook, this is it.

When you log in to Facebook, you might expect to hear from long-lost friends or to see pictures from the latest family reunion. Maybe you follow Amnesty on Facebook and learn about ways you can make a difference for human rights.

But when you log off, you probably don’t expect the police to come knocking on your door.

That’s what happened to Jabbar Savalan, a 20-year-old Azerbaijani student activist framed and punished by his government for calling for a protest on Facebook.

The Azerbaijan government’s assault upon the right to freedom of expression is a travesty.

Tell the authorities that you “Dislike” injustice. Sign Amnesty’s online petition calling for the immediate and unconditional release of Jabbar Savalan.

Jabbar is one case in this year’s Write for Rights campaign, Amnesty’s annual human rights letter-writing marathon. Hundreds of thousands of people will be participating this year, writing letters of hope and solidarity to free prisoners of conscience and combat injustice worldwide.

Maybe this is your first time writing for rights, or maybe you’ve taken this action before. Now’s the time to pledge your participation in this event – starting with signing this online petition for Jabbar.

During Write for Rights, December 3-11, Amnesty will deliver the petition signatures along with a giant Facebook-inspired “Dislike” thumbs-down sign to Azerbaijan’s diplomatic offices in the U.S.

Jabbar’s case is deeply troubling. Azerbaijani authorities didn’t like his Facebook post, so they began following him. One day later, they arrested him without explanation.

Jabbar knew something was very wrong that night. Police never read him his rights. He wasn’t searched right away. He was manhandled in the police vehicle.

It was only when Jabbar arrived at the police station that authorities did an official search, and that’s when they “discovered” marijuana in his outer jacket pocket. It was all too convenient. Officials in Azerbaijan have a history of using trumped-up drug charges to smother dissent. Jabbar maintains he’s never used drugs in his life.

Jabbar was jailed for a Facebook post. If we don’t call out authorities on abusive behavior, wherever and whenever it happens, it will only get worse. They will crush and crush and crush, ever more recklessly, inhumanely and unlawfully.

If freedom is something we cherish, then we must defend it. Jabbar Savalan was jailed because of his beliefs, and as human rights defenders, we can’t let this stand.

Join thousands of others around the world fighting for Jabbar and other cases during this year’s Write for Rights campaign. Freedom for Jabbar and others like him is only possible if we take a stand — together.

Add your name to Amnesty’s petition calling for Jabbar’s release.

In solidarity,

Michael O’Reilly
Senior Director, Individuals at Risk Campaign
Amnesty International USA

P.S. Write for Rights is a powerful, inspiring event – the largest grassroots letter-writing campaign in the entire world. Put pen to paper and deepen your commitment to human rights. Find Write for Rights events near you and learn more by visiting amnestyusa.org/writeathon.

Never Forget

I will never forget you, to the end of my life

Dear Gabriel,

First they beat my head with steel rods, and I nearly died.

They arrested me. Fined me. Harassed me. Charged me with absurd and inconceivable accusations.

My editor-in-chief, Elmar Huseynov, was assassinated.

I am a journalist who challenged my government, and paid a terrible price for it. Four years of my life were stolen.

In prison, I was between life and death. Life in a torture chamber became pointless, ceased its normal rhythms. Violence obliterated all signs of vitality.

On May 26 of this year, I regained my cherished liberty. I am absolutely confident that it was the tireless campaigning of Amnesty supporters like you that enabled me to return to my life.

For me, notions of Amnesty and good are identical. I am saved, but there are still people who must be rescued. They are expecting your help.

Please bring good to this world. Make a donation to Amnesty.

Just when it seemed everybody had forgotten me, unexpectedly I received hundreds of postcards from Amnesty USA. I was full of joy because I understood that such an influential organization was supporting me. I had not been forgotten.

I was greatly surprised at postcards from children. Three-, four- and five-year-old children sent me pictures made by them personally. It was so touching and tender.

These children are sure to fight for human rights and justice. No one can take that consciousness away from them.

I am grateful to you. You have saved my family from death, and I’ll never forget you to the end of my life. It is my mission to serve the ideals advocated by Amnesty International every hour, every day, every year.

Please join me.

Yours respectfully,
Eynulla Fatullayev
JOURNALIST, FORMER PRISONER OF CONSCIENCE, AZERBAIJAN

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