Amnesty International (AI)
Origin. Founded in 1961 by British lawyer Peter Beneson as a 1-year campaign for the release of prisoners of conscience, Amnesty International has grown to become a worldwide organization, winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 1977. As defined by AI, ‘prisoners of conscience’ are people imprisoned solely because of their political or religious beliefs, gender, or their racial or ethnic origin, who have neither used nor advocated violence. The organization’s mandate is based on the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.