Conscientious objector Alexander Hense
Use this form to send the letter below to the relevant authority (Minister of Defense Franz Josef Jung). You can add your own notes in a separate box after the standard text, if you wish. You must include a name, address, and email address; a copy will be sent to you with a cc to the WRI office (so we have a record of how many email letters have been sent out for this particular case).
Dear Minister Franz Josef Jung
I am very concerned about the military arrest of conscientious objector Alexander Hense, sentenced to a military arrest of 7 days on 9 July 2007, although there is no hope that this arrest will lead to a change of mind.
Alexander Hense announced his total objection to military and substitute civilian service several times before his call-up for 2 July 2007.
The right to conscientious objection is enshrined in Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Any substitute civilian service has to be non-punitive, and needs to be compatible with the reasons for the conscientious objection. In the case of Alexander Hense, who refuses any service which is the result of a conscription system, such a service does not exist. Still, his conscience is protected under Article 18 of the ICCPR and Art 4 of the German constitution.
It has to be feared that Alexander Hense faces consecutive arrests, in total 63 days or more, before his case will be handed to the civilian criminal justice system. Military arrest is therefore used to attempt to break Alexander Hense's convictions, in clear violation of international and national legal standards.
I call on you to respect the right to conscientious objection, and to immediately release Alexander Hense.