Torture suvivor joins criminal complaint in Germany
On 10 September 2018, ECCHR submitted further information to the German Federal Public Prosecutor in the case of Gina Haspel. The submission is a follow-up to an earlier complaint on the US torture program filed in Germany by ECCHR in December 2014. Haspel played a key role in overseeing the torture of detainees while she was stationed at a CIA secret prison in Thailand. For that, she should face prosecution. The criminal complaint is joined by Guantánamo detainee Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, who was tortured at the CIA "black site" in Thailand while Haspel served as Chief of Base at the prison.
Anniversary of Ali Enterprises factory fire
More than 250 people died in a fire at the Ali Enterprises textile factory in Karachi, Pakistan, on 11 September 2012. Only three weeks before, Italian auditor RINA certified the factory for abiding to international labor standards. Marking the six year anniversary of the disaster ECCHR together with an international coalition filed an OECD complaint in Rome against RINA.
Following the symposium "Colonial Repercussions" in January 2018, a delegation from ECCHR was invited to Namibia for the commemoration of the genocide (1904-1908). In a series of videos, those affected by (post-)colonial injustice talk about their fight for the regocnition of their rights and what they expect of the German goverment. The second part of the series is an interview with representatives of the Ovaherero Genocide Foundation and the Otjinene Village Council.
On 28 June 2018, cement company Lafarge was indicted in France on charges of complicity in crimes against humanity. This is a worldwide premiere for a parent company to be indicted for such offenses, marking a decisive step forward in the fight against impunity of multinationals operating in armed conflict zones. This follows a criminal complaint filed by eleven Syrian former employees together with ECCHR and Sherpa in November 2016.
"The arrest warrant against Jamil Hassan is a milestone and an important step for all affected by Assad's torture system – for the survivors, for the family members and also for those who are still held in the detention facilities of the Syrian government," says Wolfgang Kaleck, General Secretary of ECCHR. It is an encouraging sign for 24 Syrian torture survivors and activists, whose testimonies contributed to the arrest warrant. Together with ECCHR, they filed four criminal complaints in Germany. Those complaints name, next to Jamil Hassan, other 26 high-level officials of the Syrian intelligence services and the Syrian military.
In October 2016 an airstrike allegedly by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen killed a family of six. At the site of the airstrike bomb remnants were found, and a suspension lug manufactured by RWM Italia S.p.A., a subsidiary of German Rheinmetall AG. To uncover the contributing role of Italian actors in the airstrike, on 17 April 2018 ECCHR filed a criminal complaint in Italy.