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Amnesty International was launched 45 years ago in the wake of an article in The Observer. A week ago The Observer and Amnesty International joined forces to launch a campaign against internet censorship. is described thus:

The web is a great tool for sharing ideas and freedom of expression. However efforts to try and control the Internet are growing. Internet repression is reported in countries like China Vietnam Tunisia Iran Saudi Arabia and Syria. People are persecuted and imprisoned simply for criticising their government calling for democracy and greater press freedom or exposing human rights abuses online.

But Internet repression is not just about governments. IT companies have helped build the systems that enable surveillance and censorship to take place. Yahoo! have supplied email users’private data to the Chinese authorities helping to facilitate cases of wrongful imprisonment. Microsoft and Google have both complied with government demands to actively censor Chinese users of their services.

Freedom of expression is a fundamental human right. It is one of the most precious of all rights. We should fight to protect it.

You can paritcipate by signing the pledge on Internet freedom undermine censorship by publishing irrepressible fragments of censored material on your own site and take action to free Shi Tao by writing to the Chinese authorities and Yahoo to urge the release of journalist Shi Tao serving 10 years in prison for sending an email to a pro-democracy website.


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