USA: CO Kimberly Rivera to be sentenced - write to call for her release


Kimberly Rivera, who was a member of the US military before developing a conscientious objection between deployments in Iraq, has an important hearing on 29th April.

A plea agreement has been reached between Kimberly’s lawyers and the military authorities. A hearing to determine the length of her sentence will take place on 29 April at Fort Carson, Colorado. She has been detained since September last year.

You can send an email asking for Kimberly to be released immediately here.

Background information
Kimberly went absent without leave between deployments in 2007, travelling to Canada with her husband and children, where they claimed refugee status. In January 2009 this was rejected, and she was ordered to leave the country or face deportation. On her return to the US, she was immediately detained by the US military.

This is an update to our CO-Alerts from 21 Sept 2012 and 4 Oct 2012.

Ignoring international standards
The right to refuse to perform military service for reasons of conscience is part of freedom of thought, conscience and religion, as recognised in Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which the United States of America is a state party.

This includes those who have joined the armed forces voluntarily, since the freedom to change one's religion or belief is recognised in Article 18 (1) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. This was also specified in the Human Rights Committee General Comment 22, paragraph 5.

What you can do
War Resisters' International calls for protest letters to the US authorities - you can do that via the email form here - /node/21540 - please also write to Joseph Anderson, with whom the decision to approve the sentence rests on April 29th. His contact details are:

Commander, Fort Carson:
Major General Joseph Anderson
Public Affairs Office
1626 Ellis Street
Ste. 200, Bldg.118
Fort Carson, CO 80913, USA
Fax: 1 719 526 1021

War Resisters' International calls for the immediate release of Kimberly Rivera.

Hannah Brock
War Resisters' International