Amina Masood Janjua, Chairperson: Defence of Human Rights is launching an international campaign for the release of missing persons that will include traveling, seminars, rallies, and camps in major cities to advocate for the release of human beings imprisoned without cause. Amina began the Defence of Human Rights with almost no resources and this organization has flourished through the support of kind hearted people.
It will be 7 years since Amina has been separated from her husband, Masood. Her determination to find him has resulted in the relief of thousands of families those wrongfully imprisoned.
1. The struggle with military dictatorship and poverty upon the advent of the second decade of the 21st century introduced a new menace in Pakistan: Enforced Disappearance. Thousands of people have gone missing.
People were afraid to talk about this atrocity due to fear. Amina Masood Janjua took it upon herself to break this silence.
2. Mrs. Janjua’s lone struggle began in 2005 after the disappearance of her husband Masood Janjua. After arduous rallies, protests, legal battles, and endless campaigning; Defence of Human Rights staged a 24/7 sit-in in front of parliament house in Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan.
Hundreds of families of victims stayed in this camp for 76 days from February 15th to April 30, 2012. The exemplary and unprecedented camp turned out to be a huge success and attracted the attention of not only the nation, but the world.
3.Under the pressure of the continued struggle of the people, Parliament passed two unanimous resolutions against enforced disappearance, three parliamentary committees have been formed to look into the matter of enforced disappearance and up to 32 of the listed cases have been traced since the camp began.
Much remains to be done.
4.DHR registered more than 370 new cases of missing persons yet despite the phenomenal impact of the protest camp, it had to be closed down due to limited resources. Regardless, DHR has decided to launch this nationwide campaign and prepare for an even larger sit-in by the end of 2012.
The struggle to free human beings from illegal detentions, torture and unlawful arrests is a direct result from the wake of the War on Terror. An urgent humanitarian appeal is crucial for the sake of countless helpless victims that face death and torture from prolonged detention.
Defence of Human Rights depends 100% on the support of conscientious citizens. DHR represents more cases in Supreme Court than any other human rights association or legal firm in Pakistan without charging a single fee to the families of missing persons.
To report a case, for press and to assist the Defence of Human Rights, contact:
Amina Masood Janjua, Chairperson, DHR
40-C/1 Nagi Road Westridge-1, Rawalpindi, Pakistan