The war in Gaza is not a war between Israelis and Palestinians. Instead, it is a conflict between those on both sides who believe a future can be built on mass murder and bloodshed and those who believe that meaningful peace can only be achieved through negotiation and the renouncing of violence. Help urge that the Australian Government do all it can to see an end to the killing and to support the protection of non-combatants on both sides of the war. The Australian Government should seek to align itself with people who are seeking a just and lasting peace.
Since the 2021 coup by the military dictatorship, human rights abuses have increased against the people of Myanmar. Help us ask the Australian government to clarify its position in recognising the government in exile, the National Unity Government, and to take steps to expand sanctions against those responsible for the ongoing tyranny in Myanmar.
On 11 May 2022, Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Aklen, aged 51, was shot dead and another journalist, Ali al-Samoudi, was wounded while covering a raid by Israeli soldiers in the Jenin refugee camp. In May 2021, Israeli forces bombed media outlets in Gaza, killing two journalists and wounding approximately 100. Help us advocate for independent investigation and accountability for these and other murders.
Church leaders and members continue to be targeted for extrajudicial executions in the Philippines for opposing tyranny, and the arbitrary excise of power for greed. Recent examples are the attempt on the life of a local major and church member who challenged a quarrying project and the construction of a mega-dam. Stand with our church partners and add your voice to theirs.
In a changing world going deeper into conflict, upholding domestic and international law is now ever more important. Human rights breaches continue to occur in Israel without the State exercising its responsibilities for the just rule of law. Help us express deep concern over evidence of those breaches, and pursue peace and justice in Israel.
The Uniting Church stands in solidarity with its Papua partner churches who continue to face political and non-political arbitrary arrests as the police restrict their freedom of peaceful assembly and other civil-political rights. Other human rights organisations continue to raise concerns about particular incidences of arrests and killings, as does the United Nations. Help us advocate to have Papua human rights violations investigated, and support Indigenous West Papuan leaders.
Modern slavery remains a significant global problem. It persists in the seafood industry, particularly on some fishing vessels that catch seafood for importation into Australia. Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) seafood production and fishing is a crucial contributor to global overfishing. IUU fishing has also been associated with tax evasion, drug trafficking, arms trafficking on the same vessels and money laundering. Australia can do more to address IUU, you can write to encourage parliament to do just that.
Indonesian security forces continue to use extreme violence in the form of murder, torture and forced disappearances as key tools in the suppression and control of West Papuans. Ongoing reliance on these tools means the Indonesian Government has increased its military presence in the region. Help us to find justice for the oppressed, and have the Australian Government speak in support of human rights in West Papua.
Church people in the Philippines who stand up for social justice, human rights and protection of the environment continue to be targeted by the security forces for harassment and intimidation. As a result, a number continue to be prisoners of conscience. Help us stand with those who put their own lives at risk for the sake of others.
Modern slavery remains a significant global problem. One example is the Australian Strategic Policy Institute report which revealed that at least 27 factories in nine Chinese provinces had used labour since 2017. Those factories claim to be part of the supply chain of more than 80 global brands. Help us advocate for measures to addressing the importation of all goods and services produced by modern slavery wherever they originate from, not just China.
Take action to express concern at the impact tax avoidance by multinational corporations has on the wellbeing of people in developing countries, especially as the impact of the COVID-19 crisis is hitting developing countries.
Murders of church people have occurred in the Duterte Administration’s ‘drug war’, which has seen thousands of extrajudicial executions. Those responsible for the murders of church people, human rights defenders, environmentalists, and social justice advocates are very rarely held to account. Help us take action to make it clear murders, intimidation and harassment of human rights defenders are unacceptable and those responsible will be held to account.
When money that is supposed to build hospitals to buy medical equipment is used to buy real estate in Cairns or Brisbane, people die. And, quite frankly, those who turn a blind eye to this are as guilty as the offenders. Help us put a stop Australia’s complicity in being used a haven to benefit and protect those who commit human rights abuses.
The search for a Covid vaccine showed the world could mobilise in times of great need. However, its distribution was not equitable and have left many developing countries behind. We cannot all be safe until everyone is safe, because without global vaccine coverage the risk of virus mutation increases. Help us commit the Australian Government to fairer vaccine accessibility.
In December 2020 the Government of Bangladesh began transferring Rohingya refugees to the island of Bhasan Char, a place vulnerable to cyclones and prone to flooding. There are reports transferred refugees have had their freedom of movement restricted, mobile phones confiscated, and are being subject to abuse. Help us raise concerns over Bangladesh’s plans to relocate up to 100,000 Rohingya refugees to Bhasan Char.
Help us campaign on cases where Israeli soldiers or police have murdered Palestinian civilians and have not been brought to justice. These soldiers and police are very rarely held to account in any way for their actions by the Israeli authorities.
As part of our work on climate change, the JIM cluster believes it is vital that we seek the
protection of people who are standing up against environmental destruction. We will be inviting you to take action in support of such people. The following action focuses on seeing the protection of environmental defenders in Cambodia.
Church members in the Philippines involved in the social justice mission of the Christian faith continue to face severe harassment and threat under the Duterte Administration. They are often falsely accused of being part of the armed communist opposition forces. This includes police planting guns and grenades at their homes to justify arrests.