Prisoner of conscience

Mohamed Cheikh Ould Mkhaitir was sentenced to death after he wrote an article critical of religion and the caste system in Mauritania. He later moved to France.
A protest outside the Saudi Arabian Embassy in London against detention of Saudi blogger Raif Badawi, 2017

Anyone imprisoned because of their race, sexual orientation, religion, or political views.

- Prisoner of conscience

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Political prisoner

Someone imprisoned for their political activity.

Anarchist black cross mural of Irish and Palestinian political prisoners
Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and her staff at her home in Yangon

A more narrowly defined term is prisoner of conscience, popularized by Amnesty International.

Amnesty International

International non-governmental organization focused on human rights, with its headquarters in the United Kingdom.

Peter Benenson, the founder of Amnesty International. He worked for Britain's GC&CS at Bletchley Park during World War II.
Amnesty International, 19 March 2011.
Japanese branch of Amnesty International, 23 May 2014.
Supporters of Amnesty International at Cologne Pride Parade 2014
Amnesty International sign at the WorldPride Madrid in July 2017
A protest calling for the release of detained Saudi women's rights activists in May 2018
Amnesty International sign in Rouen, 4 May 2019
Amnesty International Sections, 2012
The Amnesty Canadian headquarters in Ottawa.
Amnesty International at the 2009 Marcha Gay in Mexico City, 20 June 2009
Protesting Israel's policy against African refugees, Tel Aviv, 9 December 2011

In the same year, Benenson had a book published, Persecution 1961, which detailed the cases of nine prisoners of conscience investigated and compiled by Benenson and Baker (Maurice Audin, Ashton Jones, Agostinho Neto, Patrick Duncan, Olga Ivinskaya, Luis Taruc, Constantin Noica, Antonio Amat and Hu Feng).

Alexei Navalny

Navalny has more than six million YouTube subscribers; through his social media channels, he publishes material about corruption in Russia, organises political demonstrations and promotes his campaigns.

Navalny in 2017
Navalny in 2006
Navalny at the courthouse, 6 December 2011
Navalny at Moscow rally, 10 March 2012
Navalny's election campaign in 2013
Percentages of Muscovites who voted for Navalny during the election
Navalny's meeting at Bolotnaya Square in Moscow, 9 September 2013
Protesters marching along Moscow's Tverskaya Street, 26 March 2017
Roman Rubanov, Navalny and Ivan Zhdanov at a meeting of the Central Election Commission
Rally for right to vote in Moscow (10 August 2019)
The Levada Center survey showed that 58% of surveyed Russians supported the 2017 Russian protests against government corruption.
Navalny in court as part of the Kirovles trial
"Enough of fake cases". The protest against the verdict in Moscow, 18 July 2013
Navalny, his wife Yulia and Russian opposition politician Ilya Yashin, 12 June 2013
Rally concert in support of Navalny, 6 September 2013
A poster that won the Navalny contest entitled United Russia, a "party of crooks and thieves"
Scenic viewpoint of Alexei Navalny in Prague, 2021
Navalny and his wife Yulia

Navalny was a Russian Opposition Coordination Council member. He is the leader of the Russia of the Future party and founder of the Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK). He is recognised by Amnesty International as a prisoner of conscience, and was awarded the Sakharov Prize for his work on human rights.

Eric Baker (activist)

British activist and one of the founders of the human rights group Amnesty International, and the second Secretary-General of the organization.

It was at Baker's suggestion that the now-famous term 'prisoner of conscience' was adopted and became central to Amnesty International, as did Baker's view that they should support those who were not themselves advocating or condoning violence.

History of the United Arab Emirates

Country in the eastern part of the Arabian Peninsula located on the southeastern coast of the Persian Gulf and the northwestern coast of the Gulf of Oman.

1870 map of the Truical Coast
1838 Map of Oman, showing the peninsula that would become, in 1971, the United Arab Emirates
A Hafit era 'beehive' tomb at Mezyad – Jebel Hafeet Desert Park, Al Ain, Eastern Region of Abu Dhabi
Decorated stone cup from Umm Al Nar site, Abu Dhabi on display at the Louvre Abu Dhabi
Umm al-Nar tomb at Mleiha, Emirate of Sharjah
Gold jewellery from Saruq Al Hadid archaeological site
The Sasanian Empire at its greatest extent c. 620, under Khosrow II
Pearls from Rams. The pearling industry was the main driver of the economy.
Portuguese colonies in Arabia.
A painting depicting Doba Fort, a fort built by the Portuguese Empire in Dibba Al-Hisn in 1620.
Painting of Portuguese Fortress Khor Fakkan (Corfacão) in 1635.
Zayed the First (1835–1909)
A painting depicting the sacking of the coastal town and port of Ras Al Khaimah in 1809.
A painting of Ras Al Khaimah under attack by British forces again in December 1819.
Flag of the Trucial States Council
Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan was the first President of the United Arab Emirates and is recognised as the father of the nation.
The proposed federation of Arab emirates, which includes modern-day Bahrain, Qatar, and United Arab Emirates.
The first conference on the Gulf federation in Abu Dhabi, 1968
Historic photo depicting the first hoisting of the United Arab Emirates flag by the rulers of the emirates at The Union House, Dubai on 2 December 1971.
The meeting room where the first constitution was signed on 2 December 1971 in Dubai. Today it is part of the Etihad Museum.
The Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest structure and building since its topping out in 2009.

The trial of the UAE Five attracted international publicity and protest from a number of human rights groups, including Amnesty International, which named the five men prisoners of conscience.

Russian Orthodox Church

Largest autocephalous Eastern Orthodox Christian church.

Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow, Russia
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Russian Orthodox monks defended the Trinity monastery against Polish troops during the Time of Troubles. Painting by Sergey Miloradovich.
An Old Believer Priest, Nikita Pustosviat, Disputing the Matters of Faith with Patriarch Joachim. Painting by Vasily Perov
St. Sophia-Assumption Cathedral in Tobolsk
Russian Orthodox church in Dresden, built in the 1870s
Patriarch Tikhon of Moscow
St. Sophia Cathedral in Harbin, northeast China. In 1921, Harbin was home of at least 100,000 White Russian émigrés.
Photograph taken of the 1931 demolition of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow
Russian Orthodox episcopal consecration by Patriarch Alexius II of Moscow and All Russia
Opening of monument to the victims of political repressions, Moscow, 1990
A cross Procession in Novosibirsk, Siberia.
Annual procession with the Albazin icon, Jewish Autonomous Region, Russian Far East.
Russia-born Metropolitan Innocent (Vasilyev) of Vilnius condemned "Russia's war against Ukraine" and is determined to seek greater independence from Moscow.
Kirill is the current Patriarch of Moscow and all Rus'
Cathedral of the Annunciation in Pavlodar, Kazakhstan
A commemoration service for the victims of the September 11 attacks at St. Nicholas Cathedral in New York City
Timeline of some Churches which came from within the ROCOR
Interior of the Church of the Resurrection of Christ, near Yalta, Crimea.
Andrei Rublev Trinity c. 1400
Church of Mary Magdalene in Jerusalem
Percentage of followers of the ROC in the Russian Federation

Some Orthodox believers and even priests took part in the dissident movement and became prisoners of conscience.

Human Rights Watch

International non-governmental organization, headquartered in New York City, that conducts research and advocacy on human rights.

Current executive Director Kenneth Roth speaking at the 44th Munich Security Conference 2008
Nabeel Rajab helping an old woman after Bahraini police attacked a peaceful protest in August 2010
Kenneth Roth and the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Mark Rutte, February 2, 2012

Human Rights Watch's main products are its crisis-directed research and lengthy reports, whereas Amnesty International lobbies and writes detailed reports, but also focuses on mass letter-writing campaigns, adopting individuals as "prisoners of conscience" and lobbying for their release.

Yury Bandazhevsky

Scientist working on consequences of the Chernobyl disaster.

According to many human rights groups Dr. Bandazhevsky was a prisoner of conscience.

Cheam Channy

Cambodian politician and member of parliament for the opposition Sam Rainsy Party (SRP).

Amnesty International declared him to be a prisoner of conscience.

Alexander Nikitin

Russian former submarine officer and nuclear safety inspector turned environmentalist.

On 30 August, Amnesty International declared him a prisoner of conscience and began an international campaign for his release.