Who would have thought that death threats could be a measure of success? But this is apparently the case, according to an alert message I received from Avaaz.
This is important enough to repost here, as we must not allow ANYONE to muffle the loudest voice we have to shout with!
From: “Emma Ruby-Sachs – Avaaz.org”
They’re coming after our team
The pressure on some of our most vulnerable staff is reaching a breaking point: they’ve received death threats, had their computers and emails hacked, their cars tampered with, and been threatened on television and radio.
Wissam, while delivering our call to stop Egypt’s largest mass execution in history, was detained at the Cairo airport, taken into a windowless room and interrogated for hours — drilled with chilling questions about his personal life, travel and work with Avaaz!
But this amazing community can, together, stand behind these brave people who speak our community’s truth to power.
The threats will get worse as we become larger and more effective, taking on some of the most entrenched and powerful players on the planet. That’s why Avaaz needs to triple-reinforce our security systems, including legal counsel to stand ready for emergencies, media support to raise the alarm if people are threatened, better encryption and the resources to move staff to a safe location when the pressure gets to be too much.
Click below to pledge a weekly donation to power the protection Avaaz needs — pledges will only be processed if we raise enough to fully fund our security plan to safeguard our staff:
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The campaign we’re running right now to Egypt — opposing the mass execution of hundreds of people — has been hugely powerful, reaching the highest levels of the government. Wissam had permission to enter Egypt and had a meeting scheduled with the Grand Mufti Allam — who has the power to immediately reject the mass killings. This is why we came under attack — Wissam says the generals who interrogated him knew everything about Avaaz, our campaign, and his own life and travel. The government was clearly watching our campaign closely.
And as soon as Wissam was sent home, news outlets around the world from the Washington Post to Al-Arabiya picked up the story immediately, putting more pressure on the Egyptian government to act to protect human rights.
But we know the threats will get worse as we get more effective. Our people-powered campaigning has taken on the world’s worst actors head-on, in ways that genuinely hurt them — from the Syrian and Russian regimes to Rupert Murdoch, Big Oil and organized crime. The Syrian dictatorship even called our campaigner ‘the most dangerous man in the world’.
We’re not backing down, and our team is laser-focused on winning our campaign in Egypt — but we also need to keep the team and the movement safe. We don’t know if Wissam would be free now if we hadn’t had such broad legal, media and diplomatic pressure lined up — and we want to make sure we always have what we need to respond to emergencies like these. With all of our small weekly pledges added up now, we can:
– Build industrial-scale security and hire top hackers and technologists, so that no attack can stop us campaigning.
– Increase the physical security of our most vulnerable staff and action teams in places like Lebanon, Russia and Uganda.
– Have lawyers ready to leap into action to ensure we have the legal and diplomatic support needed when our team is under threat.
– Build a direct-response media team, which brings global attention to such incidents right away and ensures that the voices of the people aren’t silenced.
– Take a range of other actions to improve the security of our team and our members.
With more than 35 million members, we’ve become the largest global civic movement ever, and our campaigns pose a real threat to brutal regimes and corrupt corporations. Two years ago, our website came under massive attack, threatening our ability to keep campaigning. We came together to protect it and now our tech systems are reinforced and fully prepared for almost any kind of cyber-attack. But they’re coming after our staff. Let’s prove that no matter what tactics they use, attacking our movement only makes us stronger.
With hope and deep gratitude,
Emma, Mia, Alex, Mais, Christoph, Emily and the whole Avaaz team
Egypt: Stop the Mass Execution (Avaaz)
Egypt deports man lobbying against mass death sentences (Reuters)
Egypt deports activist with death penalty petition (Washington Post)
Egypt Bars Lebanese Man over Death Sentence Petition (Almanar)
Egypt bars Lebanese activist over death sentence petition (AlArabiya)
Hundreds of Egyptians Sentenced to Death in Killing of a Police Officer (NY Times)