Amnesty International

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As stated by their homepage: "Amnesty International (AI) is a worldwide movement of people who campaign for internationally recognized human rights." Founded in the UK in 1961, the organization works to highlight reported deviations from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of the United Nations. It attempts to garner public support, most notably in the form of letter writing campaigns, in the belief that this can exert political pressure.

It was the winner of the 1977 Nobel Peace Prize.

Amnesty's goals

At the 27th International Council meeting, 2005, it was decided that:

"Amnesty International’s vision is of a world in which every person enjoys all of the human rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international human rights standards.

In pursuit of this vision, Amnesty International’s mission is to undertake research and action focused on preventing and ending grave abuses of the rights to physical and mental integrity, freedom of conscience and expression, and freedom from discrimination, within the context of its work to promote all human rights.

This manifests itself as Amnesty's goals:

  1. Abolish capital punishment
  2. Put an end to extrajudicial executions and "disappearances"
  3. Put an end to torture and ill-treatment
  4. Put an end to unlawful killings in armed conflict
  5. Ensure conditions in prisons meet international standards of human rights
  6. Ensure rapid and fair trials for all prisoners of conscience
  7. Ensure free education to all children worldwide
  8. Put an end to the recruitment and use of child soldiers
  9. Promote economic, social and cultural rights for marginalised communities
  10. Protect human rights defenders
  11. Protect the rights of refugees, migrants and asylum seekers

One topic of particular controversy is the organisation's stance on abortion, as both pro- and anti-abortion members belong to Amnesty. In August 2007, Amnesty International changed its position to pro-choice. [1] [2] [3]


  1. Amnesty International Becomes a Pro-Choice Organization. NewsMax Aug. 21, 2007
  2. Amnesty International takes on divided world "Amnesty International committed itself to strengthening the organization's work on the prevention of unwanted pregnancies and other factors contributing to women's recourse to abortion and affirmed the organization’s policy on selected aspects on abortion (to support the decriminalisation of abortion, to ensure women have access to health care when complications arise from abortion and to defend women's access to abortion, within reasonable gestational limits, when their health or human rights are in danger), emphasizing that women and men must exercise their sexual and reproductive rights free from coercion, discrimination and violence." Amnesty International 08/17/2007
  3. Amnesty International defends access to abortion for women at risk Amnesty International 6/14/2007

Also See

External Links

Amnesty International's homepage