The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Sharon Singh, Amnesty International,
(202) 544-0200 x289 or Jen Turner and Nicole Caruso, WKT-PR, (212) 997-9522

Amnesty International USA Launches New Video Urging an End to Detainee Abuse Under Incoming U.S. Leadership --

Actor Freddy Rodriguez Provides Voiceover, Declaring “Torture is Indeed Terror”


In light of President-elect
Barack Obama's statements indicating his intent to close the U.S. detention
center at Guantanamo Bay and end the torture of detainees in the U.S.-led
war on terror, Amnesty International USA is releasing a Web video encouraging
the new administration to follow through on those promises upon taking
office. The video, Counter Terror with Justice, begs the question:
Could your conscience tolerate these abuses if they were taking place right
in front of you?

Counter Terror with Justice is the
first marquis video to appear on the new Amnesty International USA Web
site, The site, like the larger Protect The Human
campaign, is designed to help a new generation of human rights activists
get acquainted - not only with the issues but with each other. In addition
to taking action for human rights, visitors are encouraged to post their
own artistic renderings of what "human rights" means to them. Entries
are posted to a mapping application that allows visitors to explore the
full gallery by geographic location. The effect will be an enhanced sense
of community among those who care passionately about Amnesty International's
life-saving mission.

Actor Freddy Rodriguez (Six Feet Under, Ugly
Betty) provided the voiceover for the video and had this to say: "By inflicting
torture, America hurts its own standing in the world. It's a very slippery
slope. Torture is indeed terror. We need to draw attention to these abuses
and counter terror with justice."

Amnesty International USA is urging President-elect
Obama to take concrete steps in his first 100 days in office that show
true leadership by making human rights central to his new administration.
The human rights organization is specifically calling on the new administration
to announce a plan and date for the closure of the U.S.-controlled detention
facility at Guantanamo, issue an executive order to ban torture and other
ill treatment and ensure an independent commission is created to investigate
abuses committed by the U. S. government in its war on terror.

"President-elect Obama has a fresh opportunity
to end the seven-year assault on human rights by the current U.S. administration,"
said Amnesty International USA's executive director Larry Cox. "Many Americans
have been absolutely ashamed that the U.S. government imprisoned men without
any due process or even basic human dignity. And now, we all have a renewed
sense of hope that this new administration will rapidly undo the unlawful
policies and practices adopted by President Bush in the name of national

Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning
grassroots activist organization with more than 2.2 million supporters,
activists and volunteers in more than 150 countries campaigning for human
rights worldwide. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates
and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice,
freedom, truth and dignity are denied.

# # #

To view the video,
Counter Terror with Justice, please
and click the window titled "Film, Music and More."

Amnesty International is a global movement of millions of people demanding human rights for all people - no matter who they are or where they are. We are the world's largest grassroots human rights organization.

(212) 807-8400