Bangladeshi garment labour activist remains jailed on fabricated charges

Last month, we received word on the arrest of Moshrefa Mishu, president of the Garment Workers Unity Forum, in Bangladesh. Since our initial report, further details on her arrest have surfaced, and we are happy to inform you that the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has formally issued an appeal. The issues surrounding the case include: illegal arrest; arbitrary detention; fabricated charges; ill-treatment; impunity; rule of law. (AHRC) Visit the ARHC Urgent Appeal to take action.

Mishu has been arrested on three fabricated cases and, according to sources, “has been ill-treated and threatened with death or disappeared while in detention.” (AHRC)

Some months prior to her arrest, Mishu was threatened with death by crossfire, which, according to the AHRC, is “an official method of extrajudicial killing of crime suspects by the law-enforcement agencies as well as the paramilitary and armed forces” (AHRC). In these cases, individuals are arrested and then, while in detention, killed in shootouts.

This isn’t the first time we’ve urged you to support the AHRC Appeals Program, and, unfortunately, it won’t be the last. The Appeals Program is successful because it tracks patterns of recorded violations and creates a unique opportunity for action. The program is driven by narrative, as each violation is contextualized through case details.

On the flip: In the wake of last month’s factory fire, Gap Inc. has come forward to promise workers compensation, and proper factory inspection. When rule of law is absent, what is the true responsibility of business?

Click here to watch the video of Basil Fernando, Director of the Asian Human Rights Commission, outlining the importance of rule of law.

Mary Hanlon

Mary is the founder, editor and lead contributor at Social Alterations. She is also a PhD candidate at the University of Edinburgh, where she researches responsible fashion and transnational labour rights activism in the wake of the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh.

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