A DELEGATION from Amnesty International Australia today delivered to the Russian Consulate in Sydney a petition with over 10,000 signatures calling on President Vladimir Putin to stop the attacks on human rights in Russia.
The presentation in the eastern Sydney suburb of Woollahra coincided with the presentation in Russia of a global Amnesty International petition with over 300,000 signatures from around the world. The Australian petition was accepted by a Russian consular official who met briefly with the Amnesty delegation.
Amnesty International supporters in Australia have called on Russia to end the attacks on political dissidents, journalists, human rights groups and LGBTQI activists.
Supporters of this campaign include Australian Wallabies star, David Pocock. The Rugby union player, who has said he will not marry his long-term partner Emma Palandri until gay and lesbians can do the same, said it was time Russia stopped punishing people simply for who they loved.
Spokesperson for Amnesty International Australia, Chris Holley, hopes that with the start of the Winter Olympic games in Sochi, Russia on 6 February, the Olympic torch will throw a light on human rights violations occurring in that country.
“Hosting the Olympic Games is a privilege and respect for human rights and basic freedoms should be demanded of any host country,” Mr Holley said.
“We are very concerned by Russia’s deteriorating human rights record especially in regards to LGBTQI rights and freedom of expression.
“The Russian Government needs to repeal repressive laws which threaten basic civil and political freedoms and defend every Russian’s human rights.”
Source: Amnesty International Australia