On the night before the “foreign agents” law came into force, unknown individuals sprayed graffiti reading, “Foreign Agent! ♥ USA” on the buildings hosting the offices of three prominent NGOs in Moscow, including Memorial.
Ukrainian authorities should allow the Kiev Pride Equality March, scheduled for May 25, 2013, in Kiev, to proceed and protect its participants from violence, Human Rights Watch said today. In a letter sent to Kiev’s city administration on May 21, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International urged the office not to ban the Equality March, and to protect its participants from violence.
Kazakh authorities should drop criminal charges against a journalist and immediately release him from a psychiatric clinic where he is under forced observation. On May 13, 2013, a court in the journalist’s hometown extended his detention until June 14.
Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International are following closely developments around the Kyiv Pride Equality March scheduled to take place on May 25, 2013. We are concerned by a statement that appeared today on the Kyiv City Administration website indicating that the administration will request a court to ban the march and other events scheduled for May 25, with the exception of those directly relating to Kyiv City Day, also scheduled for May 25.
The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) was founded in 2003 with the goal of strengthening governance by increasing transparency over revenues from the oil, gas, and mining sectors. EITI has contributed to much greater disclosures of information and helped spur dialogue in many countries. But EITI has not made progress toward its ultimate purpose of enhancing accountability in resource-rich countries. An independent evaluation commissioned by EITI in 2011 concluded, “EITI has not been a significant driver of change. While transparency has improved, accountability does not appear to have changed much.” The evaluation attributed this problem to the absence of a coherent strategic vision, explaining that without clarity on how publicizing credible data on natural resource revenues would lead to better governance, EITI would not be able to direct its efforts to where they would be most likely to deliver results.
Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland should urge Russian leaders to end the crackdown on civil society groups during his visit to Russia. Jagland is in Moscow on May 19 to 22, 2013 for meetings with President Vladimir Putin and the Russian parliament.
Here’s a story to break your heart – thousands of Afghan refugee boys who roam Europe alone, without parents, without enough help from European governments, and at risk of destitution, detention, and death.
Courtroom violence during a hearing in the case of an ethnic Uzbek on trial for alleged crimes during the June 2010 ethnic violence seriously undermines his right to fair trial. Such violence and hostility has occurred repeatedly during the trial, which began in September 2011, and at other trials of ethnic Uzbeks linked to the 2010 violence.
Recent amendments to Azerbaijani legislation violate the government’s international commitments and would limit free expression. President Ilham Aliyev should veto the amendments and ensure that no one is punished for exercising fundamental rights.
The European Union has placed human rights, democracy and the rule of law firmly at the core of its structure, and so its willingness to defend those values is crucial to its credibility. Faced with a deteriorating situation on these three fronts in Hungary, Brussels has failed to show the necessary resolve.