Amnesty International report on the death penalty

29 March 2011

Amnesty International (AI) has released a new report on the death penalty.

AI found that countries which continue to use the death penalty are being left increasingly isolated following a decade of progress towards abolition.

The summary and full report can be found at the link below.

Also read a blog post on the issue by Salil Shetty, Secretary-General of Amnesty International

What can I say? – BBC radio documentary

13 March 2011

What can be said publicly in countries where politics, tradition and memories of past trauma combine to put limits on free expression?

In partnership with the Australian radio station ABC, the four-part series What Can I Say? explores freedom of speech and democracy in South East Asia.

Presenter Gary Bryson travels to Indonesia, Cambodia, Thailand and Singapore to meet people who are trying to find a voice for their village, their culture or their nation.

Singapore Government submits National Report for UPR process

1 March 2011

The Singapore Government recently submitted its National Report for the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process. A copy of the report can be downloaded here.

MARUAH’s comments on the report can be found in the media reports below

Blackout-proof the protests

20 February 2011

Across the Middle East — in Bahrain, Libya, Yemen, and more countries every day, autocratic regimes are trying to crush unprecedented peaceful protests with brutality and blackouts.

Avaaz is working urgently to “blackout-proof” the protests — with secure satellite modems and phones, tiny video cameras, and portable radio transmitters, plus expert support teams on the ground — to enable activists to broadcast live video feeds even during internet and phone blackouts.

For more info, please click on the link below.

Yong Vui Kong: MARUAH sends appeal to the President

9 February 2011

Please see below for an appeal letter from MARUAH to President S.R. Nathan on the case of Yong Vui Kong.


9th February 2011

His Excellency President S.R. Nathan
Office of the President
Orchard Road,
Singapore 0922

Via email

Your Excellency,

As we await the decision of the Singapore Court of Appeal on Yong Vui Kong’s appeal, MARUAH is writing to you, Sir, to urge you and our government to nevertheless reconsider Vui Kong’s clemency petition and commute his death sentence. We also ask that the government take steps to bring Singapore into compliance with international human rights norms with regard to the death penalty.
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CRC concluding observations issued – Review of child rights in Singapore

6 February 2011

The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child has issued its concluding observations after considering the consolidated second and third periodic reports submitted by Singapore.

Click here (Word document) to download the document.

As a State party to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), Singapore is obliged to submit regular reports to the Committee on how the rights are being implemented.

Other related documents can be found on the webpage below. (scroll down to ‘Singapore’)

MARUAH’s View of the Police Investigations into SFD Members’ Sale of Death Penalty Book

30 January 2011

Please see PDF and below for Media Advisory on MARUAH’s View of the Police Investigations into SFD Members’ Sale of Death Penalty Book.



For immediate release

29 January 2011

MARUAH’s View of the Police Investigations into SFD Members’ Sale of Death Penalty Book

MARUAH notes the statement by NGO Singaporeans for Democracy (SFD) and various media reports about the recent initiation of police investigations into three SFD members over their alleged sale of copies of the book Once A Jolly Hangman: Singapore Justice in the Dock at a film screening held on 14 November 2010 at the Substation. The SFD members are being investigated under Section 502 of the Penal Code, for the knowing “sale of printed or engraved substance containing defamatory matter”.

Although the police commenced investigations against Mr Alan Shadrake, the author of the book, for criminal defamation in 2010, no formal charges have been instituted. It is thus troubling how an investigation can begin into the sale of printed substance containing defamatory matter if the book in question has not been found by a court of law to be defamatory. Indeed, charges have not even been brought.

MARUAH therefore calls upon the Singapore Police Force to explain why it is initiating these criminal investigations on the three SFD members in relation to the sale of the book, when the author himself has not been charged.

Furthermore, if the Government’s position is that the sale of the book would be unlawful, then the proper course of action is to ban the book outright, which is a transparent action that is accountable and subject to judicial review of the courts where appropriate, and also conforms with the rule of law.

MARUAH President Braema Mathi says: “These criminal investigations by the police carry a much heavier ‘footprint’ than contempt proceedings. In this case it is bewildering why the police are investigating sellers of the book when there is no criminal defamation charge against the author or contempt proceedings against the three members.

”MARUAH is opposed to investigations without any reasonable basis, as these will only serve to significantly chill public debate on the death penalty and detract from Singaporeans’ constitutional right to free expression. ”