Campaigns: Prisoners for Peace Day

1st December is Prisoners for Peace Day. For over 60 years, War Resisters' International have, on this day, made known the names and stories of those imprisoned because of their actions for peace. Many are conscientious objectors, in gaol for refusing to join the military. Others have taken nonviolent actions to disrupt preparation for war.

This day is a chance for you to demonstrate your support for those individuals and their movements, by writing to those whose freedom has been taken away from them because of their work for peace.

While WRI has a permanent Prisoners for Peace list, which we make a special effort to update for Prisoners for Peace Day on December 1st.

Other posts

30 Sep 2006

Monday 16 October:

Shut DESO Action Day in the UK

The most important day in the Shut the Denfece Export Services Organisation (DESO) campaign calendar.
CAAT will be joining other groups for a day of action to shut DESO.

DESO exists to sell arms for companies and to lobby for arms exports within government.

31 Jul 2006

1 December - Prisoners for Peace Day: Focus on Russia

Prisoners for Peace Day 2006 will highlight the situation in Russia, with the new NGO law threatening the work of independent NGOs and the war in Chechnya also leading to increased persecution in Russia itself. The Prisoners for Peace campaign pack will be available early November in English, Spanish, French, and German.

10 Mar 2006

Bart Horeman

For me as a WRI person, living in the Netherlands has two privileges. One is that I can take a bike and cycle to WRI's birthplace. The other is that I have easy access to WRI's heritage, stored at the International Institute for Social History (IISH) in Amsterdam.

But it was not before our chair Joanne planned a visit to the IISH and asked me to come along, that I became aware of these advantages. Going through some of WRI's archives, one realises that we already have a long history.

01 Dec 2005

Conscientious objection and desertion in Eritrea

Eritrea is the focus of this years' Prisoners for Peace Day - 1 December. Eritrea is one of the few countries with an extensive conscription system for men and women. In fact, military training is an integral part of the education system, with the last school year being “served” at the military training camp.

01 Nov 2005

Turkish conscientious objector Mehmet Tarhan is on hunger strike for more than 32 days today, and War Resisters' International is very concerned about his health, and long-term health consequences this hunger strike might have. We therefore urge you to make your protest heard with the Turkish authorities, to fulfill Mehmet Tarhan's demands, so that he, and his friend Ali, can end their hunger strike.

01 Nov 2005

1 December: Prisoners for Peace Day

Every year for 1 December - International Prisoners for Peace Day - War Resisters' International compiles a list of people imprisoned for conscientious objection or nonviolent action for peace.

This year, the focus will be on Eritrea, a country destroyed by war and an authoritarian regime, and where the only option for conscientious objectors - men and women - is to flee the country.

Please order the campaign pack (available early in November) in English, Spanish, French or German.

More information on Eritrea at <

01 Nov 2005

WRI homepage > WRI Network > Prisoners for Peace Appeal > Prisoners for Peace 2005

Dear member and supporter of War Resisters' International,

Welcome to our Prisoners for Peace Day appeal, this year with a focus on the situation in Eritrea.

01 Nov 2005

Background to the country

Eritrea, located in the horn of Africa, won its de-facto independence on 24 May 1991 after 30 years of a bitter, bloody and costly armed struggle against rule by its neighbour, Ethiopia. Eritrea formally declared independence on 24 May 1993 after an overwhelming yes vote in a referendum overseen by the United Nations.

01 Nov 2005

How the list works

  • First are prisoners' names (in bold), followed by their sentence, then their place of imprisonment and, finally the reason for their detention
  • Information about countries where prisoners have had their sentences suspended, where sentences have been served or completed during the year, or where there are simply too many imprisoned COs to list, are in italics.


Although Armenia passed a law on conscientious objection in 2004, the country continues to imprison conscientious objectors.

01 Nov 2005
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I was born on 10 January 1981 in Asmara. I was just 15 years old, and we were told that we would get the results of the school leaving examinations only after basic training in the National Service. That's why I joined the military, hoping that my exam results were good and I could leave after basic training to study. In 1996 I was brought to Sawa for basic training.