- Página principal
- Quiénes somos
- Sobre Front Line Defenders
- ¿Quiénes son los/as defensores/as de los derechos humanos?
- Visión, Misión y Valores fundamentales
- Consejo de Dirección
- Consejo de Administración
- Informes anuales e información financiera
- Plan estratégico 2011 – 2014
- Novedades en Front Line Defenders
- Para los/las defensores/as
- ¿Cómo puedo ayudar?
Ongoing persecution of human rights defenders in Tunisia
On 24 May 2007, Mohammed Abbou one of Tunisian leading human rights defenders was forcibly dragged from a meeting with his family simply because his wife Samia mentioned that she had met a joint Front Line and Human Rights First mission in Tunisia to investigate the situation for human rights defenders
Human Rights First and Front Line conducted a 5-day mission to Tunisia to meet with human rights defenders including, the Tunisian League for Human Rights (LTDH) the National Council for Liberties in Tunisia (CNLT) and independent judges between 20 and 24 of May 2007. The delegates also met with international representatives, including European and American diplomats and the Tunisian Ministry of Justice.
Samia Abbou had travelled to El Kef prison for her weekly meeting with her husband together with representatives of Front Line and Human Rights First. On previous visits Samia Abbou has been physically attacked, threatened and harassed. Speaking outside El Kef prison Front Line's Natacha O'Brien said: "The attack on Mohammed and Samia Abbou is emblematic of what we have witnessed throughout our five day joint mission to Tunisia where human rights defenders and their families are victims of heightened repression.”
During Samia Abbou subsequent visit, on 31 May 2007, she was further harassed and threatened by senior staff at el Kef prison, who told her that if she discussed human rights or mentioned international organisations she would be prevented from visiting her husband. She met with her husband for 15 minutes, during which ten members of the police force were present, with one police officer taking notes of their conversation. There has been an increase of security personnel outside her home and her eldest son was followed by security while he was going to the shops.
Front Line has also received reports that there is now a permanent presence of about 20 security personnel and 3 plain-clothes personnel outside the CNLT office. All members of CNLT have been prevented from entering the CNLT office in effect forcing the office to close down.Front Line is extremely concerned by reports of harassment of several human rights defenders. Lassad Jouhri, human rights defender and founder of the L'association International pour la Défense des Prisonniers Politiques - AISPP (International Association for the Support of Political Prisoners) was arrested at 8.00 am on 24 May 2007. The day prior to his arrest he had agreed to accompany Front Line and Human Rights First to El Kef prison with Samia Abbou. He was held in a police station in the neighbourhood of Mannouba.e was subsequently released at 8.00pm on the same dayTwo of his fingers have been reportedly fractured as a result of ill-treatment while in police custody.Front Line believes the action taken by the authorities is a direct result of the joint Front Line and Human Rights First mission.
The Tunisian authorities also physically prevented Tunisian human rights defenders from participating in a training workshop for human rights defenders organised by Front Line in the offices of CNLT between 18 and 20 May 2007.
Mohammed Abbou is a human rights defender and lawyer who is serving a three and a half years prison sentence because he published an online article in 2005 in which he criticized torture in Tunisian prisons. Mohammed Abbou was physically dragged from the meeting room after only 60 seconds of the meeting. Samia Abbou was also forcibly removed from the meeting room and the prison.
Freedom of expression, freedom of association and freedom of assembly remain severely limited in Tunisia. Human rights defenders are frequently subjected to harassment, intimidation, physical assault, arbitrary arrests and detentions, ill-treatment while in custody.
Human Rights First is an international human rights organization based in New York and Washington D.C that works to protect people at risk including: refugees who flee persecution, victims of human rights violations, victims of discrimination, those whose rights are eroded in the name of national security, and human rights defenders.
(24 May 2007)update(5 June 2007)