Do letters make a difference?
There have been numerous releases of people whose cases featured as Amnesty International Appeals in recent years. [Photos by kind permission of Amnesty International.]
Fathimath Nisreen was released from detention in the Maldives when she was granted a presidential amnesty. On her release she said:
“I am really grateful. International pressure was the main reason for my release and I know that Amnesty played a huge role. I know that Amnesty groups and other well-wishers have been sending a lot of letters about me, apparently thousands of letters. I want to say thank you to you and everyone else at Amnesty who helped me.”
Mexican prisoner of conscience and environmental activist, Felipe Arreaga Sánchez, was released after more than 10 months in prison. Following his release, he thanked national and international human rights organizations for their support. He said that during all the time he was in prison he never felt alone as the manifestations of support never ceased.
Ali-Salem Talek was released from prison in Morocco, along with more than 20 other political prisoners. On his release, he said “I am very grateful for all the letters.. from AI members. Knowing of AI’s campaign has given me strength during my detention and to carry on my work as a human rights activist. This campaign led directly to my release.”