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Greenpeace Pirates?

Greenpeace Pirates

A Russian court has just formally charged 28 Greenpeace activists from around the world, along with a freelance photographer and videographer, with piracy.

If convicted, each could face up to fifteen years in a Russian prison. All for the crime of peacefully protesting oil drilling in the Arctic. It’s the most serious threat to Greenpeace’s environmental work since French secret service agents bombed and sunk the Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior — killing a crew member — back in 1985.

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But we didn’t back down then and can’t back down now — no matter how far those in power go to silence the people who speak out against Arctic oil drilling and environmental destruction. With your support, we can stop drilling in the Arctic just like we stopped French nuclear weapons testing three decades ago.

The scene from the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise two weeks ago was almost unbelievable.

Using a helicopter and ropes, fifteen armed Russian special forces agents boarded the ship and started rounding up everyone onboard, assembling them on the helideck and taking control of the ship. The crew was eventually moved to the main area of the ship and put under guard while the ship was towed to the Russian city of Murmansk.

It was in Murmansk where, just yesterday, the last of the Greenpeace activists and the two freelancers were charged with piracy. They’re not pirates. Peaceful protest isn’t piracy. It’s the voice that our environment desperately needs right now.

Don’t let that voice and the voices of those charged with piracy in Russia be silenced. Please help support our work to save the Arctic and protect the environment by making a gift today.

Greenpeace doesn’t take a dime from corporations or governments so we can do what’s necessary to protect the environment. Especially when corporations and governments are the ones threatening our environment in the first place.

We rely entirely on financial support from people like you to do the work that we do. I wouldn’t want it any other way. Thanks for all you do.

Sincerely,

Phil Radford
Greenpeace USA Executive Director

P.S. A Russian court has just formally charged 28 Greenpeace activists, along with a freelance photographer and videographer, with piracy for protesting Arctic drilling.

Pussy Riot World Map

Dear Gabriel,

We’re honestly not sure how the Russian authorities are going to react to our Pussy Riot World Map.

The Russian authorities recently banned Pussy Riot’s videos as “extremist”. And last August, the Russian Embassy in Washington tossed Amnesty’s petitions to the curb – literally – and refused to hear our concerns about human rights in Russia.

W1303EAIAR1But on March 4, the one-year anniversary of Pussy Riot’s arrest, we will not be silent. Two Pussy Riot members, Maria “Masha” Alyokhina and Nadezhda “Nadya” Tolokonnikova, remain behind bars in notoriously brutal prison camps. Last Wednesday we danced outside the Russian Embassy to commemorate Pussy Riot’s performance – now we’re heading back with our map of Pussy Riot’s supporters around the globe.

We only have a few more days left to add as many names as possible to our map. Stand for Pussy Riot and free speech in Russia — get on the map!

It’s been a whirlwind year since Pussy Riot’s iconic “punk prayer” performance at Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow. Arrests, courtrooms, lawyers, political posturing by the Russian authorities and President Putin — all culminating in Masha and Nadya’s outlandishly harsh two-year sentences, at prison camps far from their families and young children.

But the women of Pussy Riot were never alone. From Twitter to rock shows to handwritten letters, hundreds of thousands have called on the Russian authorities to #FreePussyRiot. More than 100 of Russia’s best-known actors, directors and musicians signed a letter calling for their release. Madonna played a Moscow concert with “Pussy Riot” emblazoned across her back. Amnesty activists threw a full-fledged punk concert steps from the Russian Embassy in Washington DC. Star musicians like Sting and Anti-Flag added their names to our Pussy Riot world map in solidarity — along with thousands of other activists like you.

One year later, Pussy Riot needs us to speak out — more than ever. Why now? Because Pussy Riot continues to be a symbol of the Russian authorities’ unreasonable crackdown on freedom of expression in Russia — and the attacks on free speech in Russia are only getting worse with some disturbing new laws.

Did you know that:

Conducting public protests in Russia could cost you up to U.S. $32,000 in fines?

Human rights and political activism could potentially be treated as “treason” in Russia, thanks to a broad new legal definition?

Foreign and domestic NGOs — including those doing vital human rights work — face increasingly severe restrictions on their operations in Russia?

Pussy Riot’s harsh prison sentences are a draconian response to peaceful dissent.

“This is cruelty on purpose, cruelty for propaganda purposes,” said Ekaterina Samutsevich, a member of Pussy Riot who was arrested with Nadya and Masha but later conditionally released on appeal. “…We need to fight it somehow.”

And fight it we will! We will never give up our campaign to defend human rights and free speech in Russia.

On Monday, we’ll be headed to the Russian Embassy, map in hand.

Stand for free speech and be on that map.

Free Pussy Riot!

Thank You,

Jasmine Heiss
Campaigner, Individuals and Communities at Risk
Amnesty International USA

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