Yesterday PHR reported on three Sri Lankan physicians whom government officials detained on 16 May 2009. PHR believes the government is trying to suppress facts of the humanitarian crisis, civilian casualties, and attacks on hospitals during the recent routing of Tamil separatist forces that these doctors reported to the outside world.
An unprecedented surge of citizen activism demanding the release of famed Indian pediatrician, Binayak Sen, culminated last Thursday when people from around the world held vigils in his honor. Physicians for Human Rights has worked for Dr. Sen's release ever since government authorities arrested him on bogus charges of sedition on May 14, 2007.
The current H1N1 swine flu epidemic demonstrates the critical need to promote international cooperation in combating infectious diseases. Without open communication among scientists and public health specialists, lethal pandemic disease can unexpectedly erupt.
The Global Day of Action for the Doctors Alaei has launched with a coast to coast media blitz. The New York Times, Boston Globe and LA Times all called for the release of the Alaeis in Editorials today.
While the international community celebrates the release of detained US journalist Roxana Saberi, there is still continuing vigilance over the unjust imprisonments of Drs. Kamiar and Arash Alaei. These Iranian brothers are world-renowned HIV/AIDS physicians who were imprisoned since June by the Iranian government on unsubstantiated charges of communicating with an "enemy government."