Syria: Turn The Lights Back On

15 03 2015

Syria Lights

Four years of brutal conflict have plunged Syria’s people into the dark. Satellite images show that 83 percent of the lights in Syria have gone out since March 2011.

Over 200,000 lives have been lost since the conflict in Syria began four years ago. A staggering 11 million people have been forced to flee their homes and three million children are no longer in school.
Now, research has revealed that the population of Syria is living in darkness – satellite images show that in the worst-affected areas like Aleppo, 97 percent of the lights have gone out.

I remember it well. The feeling of hope that rippled out from Syria when men, women and children took to the streets to peacefully call for a change to the repressive rule that had abused their rights for decades. I watched in awe at this movement of ordinary people, proudly standing with them, overwhelmed by the immense courage on display.

Four years later and Syria is in ruins.

This peaceful movement was met with violent repression and the country fell into a bloody conflict. With devastating results. Over 200,000 people have died and millions more have been forced to flee their homes. This week we worked with 130 other organisations to reveal harrowing new research showing that since this crisis began in early 2011, 83 percent of the lights in Syria have gone out.

Four years since the start of the crisis, tell world leaders that they must stand by Syrians

In cities like Aleppo the situation is extreme – satellite images show that 97 percent of lights have gone out since 2011.

Yet in this darkness the hope and courage felt so strongly four years ago still continues.

Dr Hassan is still working in Aleppo. When he was operating on a young boy and the lights failed he found himself in a pitch black theatre. Until, out of the darkness, “the nurse pulled her mobile phone from her pocket and turned it on.” Others in the room did the same, eventually producing “just enough light to allow me to finish repairing his broken little body”.

Stand with them and shine a light in the darkness – sign our petition now

Like me, may sometimes feel that there is no hope in this desperate situation. But when you start to give up or feel despondent, remember Dr Hassan and the nurse who lit his way. And the many others like them in Syria committing unseen acts of heroism every day. Do that, and let their courage drive you to act.

Sign the petition now

continue to stand in solidarity with Syrians demanding their human rights and in defiance against anyone trying to stop them.

Please join us.

Thank you,

New Amnesty video

2 01 2015

New Amnesty video

3 12 2014

Raif Badawi is imprisoned in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, simply for creating a website to discuss political and social ideas.

North Korea: Life in the Camps

12 09 2014

In this video former prisoners and their captors expose the horror of life inside North Korea’s prison camps.

They describe forced abortions, impossibly hard labour, starvation and prisoners forced to dig their own graves.

Now you know the reality of North Korea, make sure everyone does


How many are missing in Syria? (New Amnesty video)

2 09 2014

Imagine suddenly vanishing off the face of the earth, with no one – not even your closest family – knowing where you are, why you were taken away, and what’s become of you. You may have done nothing wrong, but you don’t have a chance to defend yourself, get legal help, hope for a trial or even communicate with your family to let them know where you are.
Tens of thousands of people have ‘disappeared’ at the hands of Syrian state forces in the last few years. For many years, Syria has held detainees in secret locations, unable to communicate with the outside world – and these disappearances have increased dramatically since 2011.
When state forces hold people incommunicado like this they are violating many human rights. When they do so on a mass scale, it can constitute a crime against humanity.
Find out more about our work to stop human rights abuses in Syria at

Your signature is powerful. Pick up a pen and help change the world we live in

10 07 2014

Shin Dong-hyuk – his personal story

23 02 2014
Hear the story of the only person to have been born in a North Korean political prison who has ever escaped.


Amnesty video

9 12 2013

Amnesty video

6 07 2013

Amnesty Event

27 08 2011

Speaking after attending an  event organised by Moyle Amnesty Group  to celebrate 50 years of Amnesty International, Ballycastle SDLP Councillor Donal Cunningham said “For the last 50 years, Amnesty has really played its part in changing the world, championing the causes of oppressed minorities, fighting torture, campaigning against the death penalty, defending prisoners of conscience and the rights of refugees, and calling oppressive regimes to account. Its inspiring vision is of a world in which every person enjoys the freedoms of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Unfortunately  there are still human rights challenges to face and the need for individuals to stand together against injustice remains as strong as ever. I wish the Moyle Amnesty Group every best wish for the future and assure them of my wholehearted support ”

The event featured Ballycastle’s own emerging acoustic folk singer/songwriter Meghan McWilliams  (daughter of the late David McWilliams), followed by the dramatisation  of   “Rich Woman/Poor Woman” (a poem from the Chile in the period shortly after the democratically elected Salvador Allende was overthrown by Augusto Pinochet) by locals Molly Goyer-Gorman and Catherine Dallat. The headline act was the legendary former Moving Heart  Keith Donald. An absolutely brilliant night.