Political prisoners

pic7611. Actors protest

pic7611. Actors protest

Sheila Hancock and Albert Finney hand in a letter to South Africa House on 13 October 1976, calling for the release of South African actors John Kani and Winston Tshona. Other signatories were Dame Peggy Ashcroft and playwrights David Hare and Howard Brenton. 

pic7609. Protest against deaths in detention

Students protested outside the South African Embassy on 20 October 1976 against the deaths of four more detainees in South Africa. A deputation later delivered a letter signed by National Union of Students and National Union of School Students Presidents Charles Clarke and Dan Hopewell to Prime Minister James Callaghan, asking him to make representations to the South African government. The four murdered detainees included three students and an unnamed man who died in police custody in Carletonville, west of Johannesburg.

po031. Stop the Torture of South African Political Detainees

In the mid-1970s there was a big increase in the number of detainees tortured to death by the South African security police. In 1977 Steve Biko was the 46th detainee known to have died in police custody. This poster was one of a set of three published as part of the international campaign for South African political prisoners.

po032. Stop Deaths in Detention

po032. Stop Deaths in Detention

This poster features a photograph of Joseph Mdluli, an ANC activist killed by Security Police after being detained without trial in March 1976. In the mid-1970s there was a big increase in the number of detainees tortured to death. Daily pickets were held outside South Africa House in London for six weeks in May–June 1976 to protest against the deaths. This poster was one of a set of three published as part of the international campaign for the release of South African political prisoners.

po033. Release All South African Political Prisoners

This poster was one of a set of three published as part of the international campaign for South African political prisoners.

po034. Release All Southern African Political Prisoners

Poster for the international campaign for the release of South African political prisoners. It shows prisoners breaking rocks on Robben Island.

po030. Free the Pretoria 12

po030. Free the Pretoria 12

Poster publicising the campaign for 12 South Africans charged under the Terrorism Act in June 1977. The 12 were charged with recruiting people for military training and organising sabotage attacks. After an international campaign for their release, six were acquitted and six were sentenced to long jail terms in April 1978. Among those sentenced was Tokyo Sexwale, who had left South Africa for military training and infiltrated back into South Africa. 

pic7705. Conference against Repression, April 1977

Participants in a conference on Repression in Southern Africa organised by the AAM and Southern Africa the Imprisoned Society (SATIS) on 16 April 1977. Specialist groups discussed campaigning among lawyers, trade unionists, students, church people and journalists. Two groups focused on Zimbabwe and Namibia. Left to right: Rev Cecil Begbie, Nkosazana Dlamini, Horst Kleinschmidt, SWAPO representative Shapua Kaukungua and ZAPU representative Arthur Chadzingwa.