Originally published on September 9, 2014, at ForceChange.com
Target: Joseph Kabila, President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Goal: Free the human rights activists abducted by a militant group
While monitoring human rights violations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, three activists were abducted by a patrolling militant group. The militia has been arresting any villagers suspected of working for the government or the regular army. Because of their notebooks documenting human rights abuses, the activists have been mistaken for government workers and are still being held captive. The government of the DRC must ensure the immediate release of these human rights activists.
Members of Peasant Action for the Development and Promotion of Human Rights, Celestin Bambone, Kongwa Tulinabo, and Marie Amnazo, had been gathering data on human rights violations when they were abducted. On September 1, members of the National Liberation Forces kidnapped the activists and stole their notebooks. Mistaking them for government employees, the militia is holding them prisoner at their base and refuses to release these three human rights advocates.
On the previous day, members of the militant group arrested 10 villagers suspected of working with the regular army. All 10 villagers have been released, but the militia is still accusing the human rights activists of spying on them for the government. These activists do not deserve to be imprisoned for alleged crimes that they did not even commit.
By signing the petition below, you will urge the President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Joseph Kabila, to ensure the safe and immediate release of these abducted human rights advocates.
Dear President Kabila,
Three abducted human rights activists need your help. Celestin Bambone, Kongwa Tulinabo, and Marie Amnazo of Peasant Action for the Development and Promotion of Human Rights are being held prisoner at a National Liberation Forces base located about three kilometers from Mugutu. They were collecting information on human rights violations when they were abducted, and have been accused of spying on the National Liberation Forces for your government.
The activists have been held prisoner since September 1. You must ensure their safe return through diplomacy or swift action, as leaving them imprisoned only emboldens the National Liberation Forces to continue this witch hunt and arrest more innocent people. As your government commits to inaction, the probability of their survival is dwindling. These activists are dedicated to helping others, but now it is their turn to be saved.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Al Jazeera via Wikimedia Commons