How the list works
- First are prisoners' names (in bold), followed by their sentence, then their place of imprisonment and, finally the reason for their detention
- Information about countries where prisoners have had their sentences suspended, or where sentences have been served or completed during the year are in italics.
Although Armenia passed a law on conscientious objection during the year, the country continues to imprison conscientious objectors. 13 conscientious objectors were in prison at the time of going to press.
Ashot Torosyan (08/12/03 - 08/06/05)
Central Hospital of Erevan
Vardan Sahakyan (05/03/04 - 05/09/05)
Melsik Sargyan (15/04/04 - 15/10/05)
Mikael Mkrtchyan (05/05/04 - 05/05/06)
Ruslan Avetisyan (26/05/04 - 26/05/06)
Kosh Penal Institution
Aram Manukyan (16/08/04 - 16/08/06)
Samvel Voskanyan (26/08/04 - 26/08/06)
Karen Akopyan (07/10/04 - 07/10/06)
Arsen Sargsyan (08/10/04 - 08/10/06)
Mher Mirpakhatyan (13/10/04 - 13/10/06)
Ovanes Bayatyan (14/10/04 - 14/10/06)
Artur Manukyan (arrested 06/09/04)
Grisha Kazaryan (arrested 17/09/04)
Nubarashen Penal Institution
In addition, two Jehovah's Witnesses are presently not in prison, but had to sign a written undertaking not to leave their home town Erevan. These are:
Asatur Badalyan, sentenced to 1 1/2 years
Nshan Shagiyan, awaiting trial.
Yuri I Bandazhevsky (01/06/01 - 01/06/09)
Prison Minsk, ul Kavarijskaya 36, PO Box 36 K, Minsk
Chernobyl researcher and whistle blower fraudulently convicted of corruption
Ray Davis 05/11/04 - 02/12/04
HMP Cardiff, Knox Road, Cardiff
Jailed for refusal to pay fines after disarmament actions at Plymouth nuclear submarine base and Aldermaston weapons facility.
Sawa Prison, Eritrea
Jehovah's Witnesses, imprisoned since 24 September 1994, for refusing to perform military service. All three have never been charged for their "crime". The maximum penalty for conscientious objection is 3 years.
There is a total of 25 conscientious objectors in prison at present. The ones listed below have agreed to their names being made public.
Juha Lehtonen (31.5.2004-17.12.2004)
Hannes Vartiainen (21.6.2004-5.1.2005)
Pyry Rechardt (20.10.2004-7.5.2005)
Helsingin työsiirtola, PL 36, 01531 Vantaa
Juho-Pekka Tiira (30.08.2004-19.03.2005)
Timo Turunen (25.10.2004-12.02.2005)
Ojoisten työsiirtola, Tampereentie 29, 13600 Hämeenlinna
Jasu Johannes Rannikko (9.8.2004-25.2.2005)
Käyrän avovankilaosasto, Pappilantie 36, 21370 Aura kk
Joni Airaksinen (28.6.2004-)
Laukaan vankila, PL 55, 41341 Laukaa
Touko Lehto (17.8.2004-6.3.2005)
Haminan työsiirtola, Karjakatu 25, 49400 Hamina
Pasi Sivula (13.9.2004-28.3.2005)
Naarajärven vankila, Linnatie 25, 76850 Naarajärvi
Sami Pikkarainen (9.8.2004-)
Juuan avovankilaosasto, PL 26, 83901 Juuka
Mordechai Vanunu was detained on 11 November for "for questioning related to an ongoing probe examining suspicions he leaked national secrets and violated legal rulings since his release from prison"; he was subsequently put under house arrest at his Jerusalem hostel, and is in danger of being re-imprisoned if he continues to give media interviews. Messages of support can be sent to email@example.com.
After the release of "The Five", there are no long-term conscientious objectors in prison at present. However, COs are imprisoned regularly, so please check for updates at http://wri-irg.org/cgi/news.cgi.
José Vélez Acosta 23883-069 (33 months - out 27 Jan 06)
USP, POB 1033, Coleman, Florida 33521-1033.
José Pérez González 21519-069 (5 years - in 5 Sep 03)
Atlanta USP, 601 McDonough Blvd SE, POB 150160, Atlanta, GA 30315.
Néstor de Jesús Guishard 21716 069 (14 months - out 09 Dec 04)
José Montañez Sanes 26317-069 (18 months - in 15 May 05)
Andres Santiago 19829-069 (out 10 Dec 2004)
MDC Guaynabo, PO Box 2147 San Juan, PR 00922-2147.
Jorge Cruz 26318-069 (18 months - out 06 Jun 05)
FPC Edgefield, P. O. Box 725, Edgefield, SC 29824-0725.
Conspiracy, damage to federal property, &/or probation violation 1/5/03 - resisting U.S. military bombardment of Vieques, Puerto Rico
Please send economic support for prisoners and families, and any returned letters to: May 1 Arrestees Support Committee, P.O. Box 191792, San Juan, PR 00919-1792.
After both, the Supreme Court and the Constitutional Court, ruled against the right to conscientious objection in July and August 2004, hundreds of cases that had been adjourned are being processed now. While there were 436 conscientious objectors in prison as of 30 June 2004 and 764 as of 15 November, this number is expected to rise to 1 000 by the end of the year.
Mansur Masharipov (18 months)
Vepa Tuvakov (18 months)
Turkmenistan, Lebapsky veloyat, 746222 g. Seydi, uchr. LV-K/12, Zaklyuchennomu [add name of prisoner here], Turkmenistan
Jehovah's Witnesses, arrested in May 2004, and sentenced to 18 months in prison on 28 May and 3 June 2004 for refusing military service.
Greg Boertje-Obed, 08052-016
(3 months, out 21 Dec 04)
FPC Duluth, POB 1000, Duluth, MN 55814.
Repeat trespass at StratCom headquarters, Offutt AFB, Nebraska, 3/04
Jackie Hudson 08808-039 (30 months - out 06 Mar 05)
Federal Prison Camp, Victorville, POB 5100, Adelanto, CA 92301.
Carol Gilbert 10856-039 (33 months - out 23 May 05)
Alderson FPC, Box A, Alderson, WV 24910.
Ardeth Platte 10857-039 (41 months - out 22 Dec 05)
FPC Danbury, Pembroke Station Rt. 37, Danbury, CT 06811-0379.
Sacred Earth and Space Plowshares disarmament of Colorado nuclear missile silo, 6 Oct 02; convicted of sabotage.
Helen Woodson 03231-045
Bates County Jail, P. O. Box 60, Butler, MO 64730.
Anti-war protest at the federal courthouse, Kansas City, Missouri, 11 Mar 04 violates parole following 09 Mar 04 release from prison. Plead guilty to violation and four new charges, 18 Jun 04 - Awaiting sentencing 05 Nov 04.
Pvt. Camilo Mejia (One year - out 3/05)
Building 1490, Randolph Rd., Fort Sill, OK 73503.
National Guard member, went AWOL after 2003 Iraq duty, turned himself in as conscientious objector on 15 March 04, and was subsequently sentenced to 1 year imprisonment.
Abdullah William Webster (14 months)
Box 339536, Fort Lewis, WA 98433-9536, USA
Refuses to participate in the war on Iraq based on his Muslim beliefs. Sentenced on 3 Jun 04.
Camilo Mejia and Abdullah William Webster are two of many US military personnel who refuse participation in the war on Iraq. Many US soldiers fled to Canada, or did not return from "Rest and Relaxation" in the USA, or in Germany. It is presently very difficult to get an overview of the numbers, and WRI would welcome any information on the issue.
- On 1 December, put aside at least one hour and write at least four cards to prisoners;
- Get your peace group or class or meeting place to organise a card-writing session;
- Set up a stall in your town centre, perform a bit of street theatre, or do whatever else it takes to attract attention and interest.
- Always send your card in an envelope;
- Include a return name and address on the envelope;
- Be chatty and creative: send photos from your life, drawings;
- Tell prisoners what you are doing to stop war and war preparations;
- Don't write anything that might get the prisoner into trouble;
- Think about the sort of thing you'd like to receive if you were in prison;
- Don't begin, "You are so brave, I could never do what you have done";
- Don't expect the prisoner to reply;
- Remember--next year it could be you...
For 46 years, War Resisters' International has publicised the names and stories of prisoners of conscience. Help them keep up the tradition:
- Send in a special PfP donation to WRI to help fund next year's research.
- Give a Peace News subscription to a prisoner on our list (or provide us with the name and address of someone not on our list).
Send contributions to: War Resisters' International, 5 Caledonian Road, London N1 9DX, Britian (tel +44 20 7278 4040; fax 7278 0444; email firstname.lastname@example.org).
Your outreach to prisoners does make a difference. Show your solidarity!
Online version: wri-irg.org/br-home.htm for all four language versions of the PfP 2004 pack.