Women’s rights groups, advocate Gloria Steinem sign letter in support of Amber Heard
By Amber Heard
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
The U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention ruled against British actress Amber Heard in December concerning her arrest last summer in New Zealand on an unindicted foreign-national warrant. But her right-wing supporters — who see her as a victim of harassment by the U.S. justice system — have already taken their case to the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva.
Amber Heard, a British actress, is being represented by the U.N. Human Rights Council’s special procedures department, which is comprised of over 500 representatives from the U.N. General Assembly and member governments, including many from those who are politically or socially conservative.
The U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, which heard about her case, has been formed to address the rights of arbitrary detention of individuals in developing states. It will meet on April 18 at the Permanent Mission of the United Kingdom.
Representatives from some of the most powerful human-rights organizations, including the U.S. Campaign For Truth in China, have sent a letter to the Council in support of Heard.
“We write to express our deep concern at this case where an American citizen was wrongfully accused and imprisoned by a New Zealand court on a US warrant,” wrote the U.S. Campaign. “This is a grave miscarriage of justice and it must not be allowed to continue. We strongly urge the rights of the U.S. citizen, Amber Heard, to be upheld.”
“The international community should recognize that New Zealand’s charges against Ms. Heard raise serious questions about the independence of the judiciary and about the proper use of legal processes in New Zealand,” wrote the British Humanists. “We urge the Human Rights Council to take an active role in this case.”
In November, the U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention ruled that the detention of Amber Heard during her time in New Zealand by New Zealand prison authorities did not violate her human rights.
“The Working Group found that the police arrested Ms