NYC Iranian Activism Heats Up for the UN General Assembly
With the 66th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) fast approaching, a new grassroots group of Iranian, Iranian-American, and allied activists has emerged with a unique approach that is both critical of the Iranian government's human rights record, as well as the US government's sanctions regime and threats of war. APF speaks with activists from Havaar - Iranian Initiative Against War, Sanctions, and State Repression - to discuss upcoming actions around the UNGA and their new vision for the anti-war movement.
The Fight to Free Talha Ahsan – Poet Behind Bars without Charge
Poet Syed Talha Ahsan, a British citizen, has been behind bars in the United Kingdom for the past six years, although he has never been charged with a crime in a British court of law. He was arrested at the behest of the United States under the 2003 UK-US Extradition Treaty, which allows the United States to extradite UK citizens without having to present any prima facie evidence showing wrong doing. The United States accuses him of terrorism-related offenses for allegedly being associated with a pro-Islamist website. Ahsan has appealed against his extradition in the European Court of Human Rights, which is expected to rule on the case this month. If extradited, Ahsan faces solitary confinement in a maximum-security prison with no access to his family. APF spoke with Talha’s brother Hamja Ahsan about his family’s fight to free Talha and bring him home.
Since the arrest of his brother Talha Ahsan, Hamja Ahsan has been campaigning to free his brother and challenge the controversial UK-US Extradition Treaty. He is an artist, writer, and curator based in London. He ran the Other Asias artist collective, and is Talha's younger brother by one year.
Time to End “Stop and Frisk”
Over 700,000 New Yorkers – overwhelmingly Black and Latino – were subjected to the NYPD’s controversial “stop and frisk” searches last year. One in five of those stops resulted in the use of physical force by the police, according to the New York Times. On September 27, New Yorkers from across the city will gather at City Hall to call for an end to “stop and frisk” and the passage of the Community Safety Act, a New York City Council legislative reform package that aims to ban racial profiling and end unlawful searches. Yul-san Liem of People’s Justice for Community Control and Police Accountability will join us live to talk about the citywide campaign against “stop and frisk” and the upcoming City Hall action.
Yul-san Liem is social justice artist, organizer and activist whose work addresses issues of war, state violence, trauma and resistance. She is currently the Director of Organizing for the Justice Committee, a grassroots organization that has been fighting police violence and systemic racism since the 80s. As a representative of the Justice Committee, she co-chairs the grassroots coalition, Peoples’ Justice for Community Control and Police Accountability, which is working to build a city-wide alliance of Cop Watch teams. She also sits on the Steering Committee of Communities United for Police Reform and co-chairs its Community Empowerment Working Group.
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