Thank-you!

PUBLISHED: 12:52 28 February 2008 | UPDATED: 21:23 31 May 2010

WITH the end of January and the passing of diverse Christmas and New Year celebrations worldwide, Amnesty International s greetings card campaign ended and might I once again thank the acting rector, the team vicar, the headmasters of Saffron Walden Count

WITH the end of January and the passing of diverse Christmas and New Year celebrations worldwide, Amnesty International's greetings card campaign ended and might I once again thank the acting rector, the team vicar, the headmasters of Saffron Walden County High School, Friends' School and, for the first time, Newport Free Grammar School for facilitating their parishioners', respectively pupils', participation.

Thanks are also due to the numerous others who braved the storm and signed cards in the Market Place as well as the branch secretary, Pam Gadsby, and her

helpers for preparing and posting the cards.

This year 725 cards were sent by the group, compared to 530 last year. In addition, a substantial number will have been sent by group members.

The most frequently chosen beneficiary was WOZA, a Zimbabwean women's group, brutally ill-treated because of their continued campaigning for human rights (129 cards). Second were three Azerbaijani pupils, accused of a murder which they deny - their parents believe that the causation is racist: they are ethnic Russians.

They have been in custody awaiting trial for three years and their health is deteriorating (117 cards).

The Greetings Card Campaign is a worldwide effort and the effect of - literally - thousands of cards descending on someone is hard to overestimate.

An example: one of our members, who annually writes to all the 28 prisoners selected, was surprised to receive an e-mail acknowledgement on behalf of two Iranians. Informing Head Office, we learn that this is a first contact with or about these two, and Amnesty International UK will henceforth be able to monitor their circumstances and take action as necessary. All because of a reply to a greetings card from Saffron Walden!

Thank you everybody!

Francis Deutsch

Chairman

Saffron Walden Branch Amnesty International

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