The Uzbek government should release all prisoners held on politically motivated charges and commit to ending torture on December 8, 2013, to mark the 21st anniversary of the constitution. Such steps would demonstrate a genuine commitment to Uzbekistan’s much-touted reform process.
A Russian court has ruled that a research organization must register as a “foreign agent” organization. It is the first time a court has required any independent group to register under the “foreign agents” law adopted by Russia’s parliament in 2012.
Parliament should reject restrictive draft laws that would endanger freedom of association and expression in Kyrgyzstan. A draft “foreign agents” law would require domestic nongovernmental organizations in Kyrgyzstan that receive foreign funding and engage in vaguely worded “political activities” to register as “foreign agents.”
Fear of detention and deportation prevent many undocumented migrants from reporting attacks. As Human Rights Watch has documented, many other victims don’t report attacks to the police because of lack of trust.
Russian authorities have transferred an activist in the southern city of Krasnodar to house arrest but should drop the politically motivated charges against him. Mikhail Savva, a civic activist and academic who had been jailed since April 2013 before his transfer on December 4, is on trial for fraud.
As the 100-day countdown to the 2014 Winter Paralympics begins, there is a dwindling window of opportunity to hold the Russian government to its commitment to establish social integration in the city. In late 2013, months before the Paralympic Games begin, much of Sochi remains an obstacle course for people with disabilities.