SHAHNEWAZ CHOWDHURY / BANGLADESH
FACING PRISON FOR A FACEBOOK POST
In May 2021, Shahnewaz Chowdhury’s village was swept up by a storm. Homes were destroyed. Shahnewaz wrote a Facebook post about the impact of a local power plant, linking it to the environmental destruction of his region. He was arrested for his Facebook post and detained for 80 days under Bangladesh’s oppressive Digital Security Act. Shahnewaz was granted bail, but if convicted, he faces many years in prison.
TELL BANGLADESH TO DROP THE CHARGES TODAY
DORGELESSE NGUESSAN / CAMEROON
JAILED FOR ATTENDING HER FIRST PROTEST
Two years ago, Dorgelesse was busy running her hairdressing business and supporting her family. She had never attended a protest. In September 2020, concerns about the state of Cameroon’s economy led her to protest for the first time. During the peaceful demonstrations, Dorgelesse was arrested. She was charged with “insurrection, assembly, meetings and public demonstrations” and sentenced to five years in prison. She is desperate to be reunited with her family.
TELL CAMEROON TO FREE DORGELESSE TODAY
LUIS MANUEL OTERO ALCANTARA / CUBA
ARTIST JAILED FOR PROTECTING FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION
Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara is a self-taught Black Cuban artist. He loves to paint, dance, and wear bright pink suits. On 11 July 2021, Luis Manuel posted a video online, saying he would be joining one of the largest demonstrations Cuba had seen in decades. Luis Manuel was arrested and taken to Guanajay maximum security prison, where he remains to this day. In prison, Luis Manuel’s health is declining, and he needs proper medical care.
TELL CUBA TO IMMEDIATELY FREE LUIS MANUEL
ZINEB REDOUANE / FRANCE
KILLED BY A TEAR GAS GRENADE
In December 2018, Zineb was preparing dinner in her fourth-floor apartment. In the streets below, police officers were using tear gas to disperse a protest. As Zineb went to shut her window, a police officer pointed a tear gas grenade launcher in her direction and fired. She was hit in the face by a grenade and died from her injuries. No one has been charged or suspended over her tragic death.
DEMAND JUSTICE FOR ZINEB NOW
VAHID AFKARI / IRAN
TORTURED AND UNJUSTLY JAILED FOR PROTESTING
Vahid Afkari comes from a close-knit family. On September 17, 2018, Vahid and his brother Navid were arrested for peacefully attending protests in Shiraz. Three months later, his brother Habib was also arrested for peaceful protesting. Vahid, Navid and Habib were tortured repeatedly and forced to “confess” to crimes they said they did not commit. Navid was executed in September 2020, and Habib spent 550 days in solitary confinement, and was released from prison in March 2022. Vahid has been in solitary confinement since September 2020, unjustly convicted of various baseless crimes and sentenced to decades in prison and 74 lashes.
TELL IRAN TO FREE VAHID AFKARI
NASSER ZEFZAFI / MOROCCO AND WESTERN SAHARA
LOCKED UP FOR 20 YEARS FOR DEMANDING CHANGE
Nasser Zefzafi is from Rif, Morocco; a region struggling with poor healthcare, education, and employment opportunities. When protests broke out in 2016 demanding change, the Hirak El-Rif protest movement was born, and Nasser became a prominent figure. On May 29, 2017, Nasser was arrested for interrupting a sermon at a mosque and accusing the prayer leader of acting as a mouthpiece for the authorities. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison.
TELL THE MOROCCAN AUTHORITIES TO FREE NASSER TODAY
YREN ROTELA AND MARIANA SEPÚLVEDA / PARAGUAY
DON’T TELL US WHO WE ARE
Yren and Mariana want to live their lives freely, but as trans women they are busy fighting for their rights. Trans people in Paraguay can’t legally change their names or obtain identity documents that match their gender identity. The state is trying to make them invisible. What’s more, it is difficult for trans groups to protest and speak out about the barriers they face.
TELL PARAGUAY TO LEGALLY RECOGNIZE THE IDENTITY OF TRANS PEOPLE SO THEY CAN EXERCISE THEIR RIGHTS
ALEKSANDRA SKOCHILENKO / RUSSIA
SHE OPPOSED THE WAR, NOW SHE FACES PRISON
Aleksandra (or Sasha for short) fills her life with art and music, playing all sorts of musical instruments. On March 31, 2022, Aleksandra peacefully protested against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. She replaced price tags in a local supermarket in Saint Petersburg with little paper labels containing facts about the invasion. Aleksandra was arrested and charged for her peaceful action. She has been held in detention ever since, in terrible conditions.
TELL RUSSIA TO FREE ALEKSANDRA NOW
JOANAH MAMOMBE, NETSAI MAROVA, AND CECILLIA CHIMBIRI / ZIMBABWE
ABDUCTED, BEATEN, SEXUALLY ASSAULTED, AND JAILED FOR PROTESTING
Joanah, Netsai and Cecillia have a lot of things in common: they love playing board games, watching Netflix and are passionate about politics. Sadly, they also share horrific memories of a terrible attack. On May 13, 2020, after leading an anti-government protest, the women were arrested and then abducted and allegedly tortured, including by sexual assault. The women have been charged with faking their own ordeal and face years in jail.