Alternative G8 Conference
June 17-18, 2013
June 18, 2013
We Have a Dream: We Have a Dream: President Obama, please free Leonard Peltier!
Göttingen/Berlin, 17. Juni 2013
On Tuesday and Wednesday, the Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) will hold vigils to ask US-President Barack Obama to pardon the Native American civil rights activist Leonard Peltier. "This man – who is very ill and who has spent more than half his life in prison – is innocent, and should not die in prison. Therefore, we would like to ask Obama to allow Peltier a free evening of life together with his family – in the name of humanity," says Yvonne Bangert, the STP’s indigenous peoples consultant. "The STP also asked Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Joachim Gauck to try to use their talks with Obama to suggest a pardon."
To emphasize the appeal, the STP would like to send an invitation for the two vigils – which will include street theater performances and music – following the motto "We Have a Dream: Freedom for Leonard Peltier!"
on Tuesday, June 18, 2013, at the side of the Tiergarten close to Simsonweg, to the west of the Brandenburger Tor, starting at 3 pm
on Wednesday, June 19, 2013, at Bebelplatz / Unter den Linden (near the Neue Wache), starting at 2:30 pm
Leonard Peltier was one of the leaders of the American Indian Movement (AIM). Following controversial court proceedings, ha was sentenced to a twice life imprisonment in 1977. In 1975, two FBI agents had been killed in a shootout between members of the AIM and the FBI in Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota. Peltier was blamed for this, although the eyewitness report had been made under pressure from the FBI (and was later revoked) and although the shots had not been fired with Peltier’s gun. Peltier had always claimed to be innocent. The STP has been working for the civil rights activist to be released for quite a while. Amnesty International (AI) has repeatedly criticized the trial against him of 1977 and the subsequent court hearings to be biased – calling for a review of the case.
A presidential pardon is Peltier's only chance for freedom. As he is very sick, the man – for whom several celebrities are advocating all over the world – would probably not live until the next possible habeas corpus procedure in 2024.
Yvonne Bangert is available for further questions: +49 (0)551 – 4990614, email@example.com. During the campaign, the STP can be phoned under +49 (0)151 – 561 60 40 2