• January 26, 2015
  • January 26, 2015
    The Russian government crackdown against nongovernmental organizations shows that the 2012 “foreign agent” law amounts to little more than an effort to crush dissent and debate that is essential in a democratic society.
  • January 26, 2015
    The death of at least 20 people in Egypt during clashes with security forces surrounding the commemoration of the 2011 uprising underscores the need for an independent investigation into the authorities’ excessive use of force. A woman and 17-year-old girl were killed ahead of the January 25 anniversary while participating in apparently peaceful protests, and at least 18 died on the anniversary.
  • January 26, 2015
    The authorities in Burma should stop arresting peaceful protesters and immediately and unconditionally free those imprisoned.
  • January 25, 2015
    The Vietnamese authorities should immediately stop using violence against human rights campaigners.
  • January 24, 2015
    The commander of Cambodia’s paramilitary gendarmerie admitted using force against the opposition for political reasons, publicly invoking tactics used by Adolf Hitler, Human Rights Watch said today.
  • January 24, 2015
    The government of the Democratic Republic of Congo has used unlawful and excessive force to crack down on protests since January 19, 2015. The demonstrators were protesting proposed changes to the electoral law that many Congolese believed would permit President Joseph Kabila to stay in office beyond his mandated two-term limit.
  • January 23, 2015
    Human Rights Watch has over 160 staff tweeting human rights developments from around the world. Here are some of their most popular tweets from the last seven days.
  • January 23, 2015
  • January 23, 2015
  • January 23, 2015

    Human Rights Watch is an organisation that monitors governments around the world for abuse, operating in 90 countries. Kenneth Roth started his career as an attorney, but joined Human Rights Watch in 1987 and has been its Executive Director since 1993. Ten years ago he oversaw the creation of a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) rights programme, and here he looks back on how LGBT rights have changed over that era.

  • January 23, 2015
    Too dangerous to stay and too dangerous to leave in the Central African Republic; Indonesia pressures Saudi Arabia on the death penalty while executing drug offenders; and satellite imagery gives a picture of Boko Haram's recent deadly attack in Nigeria...
  • January 23, 2015
    King Abdullah’s reign brought about marginal advances for women but failed to secure the fundamental rights of Saudi citizens to free expression, association, and assembly. Abdullah’s successor, King Salman, should halt persecution of peaceful dissidents and religious minorities, end pervasive discrimination against women, and ensure greater protections for migrant workers.
  • January 23, 2015
    Contrary to the assertions of overreach by House Republicans, President Obama's executive actions on immigrants actually don't go far enough.
  • January 22, 2015
    The Chinese judicial system’s failure to release three high-profile key activists detained in recent months – public intellectual Guo Yushan, lawyer Pu Zhiqiang, and legal activist Guo Feixiong – reflects progressively harsher suppression of civil society, Human Rights Watch said today.
  • January 22, 2015
  • January 22, 2015
    Burundian authorities arrested a prominent journalist on January 20, 2015, days after his radio station broadcast a series of investigative reports into the September 2014 murder of three elderly Italian nuns in the country. The broadcasts included allegations about the involvement of senior intelligence officials in the attack on the convent.
  • January 22, 2015
    Yemen’s post-“Arab spring” transition took a sharp new turn on Monday, when the Houthis—a once marginalized Zaidi Shia insurgency group from northern Yemen that prefers to be called Ansar Allah—staged an apparently successful coup after months of careful groundwork. Its fighters surrounded the presidential palace without major bloodshed and, after forging alliances to ensure that the military would not come to his aid, forced President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi to leave the compound.
  • January 21, 2015
    The Ethiopian government’s systematic repression of independent media has created a bleak landscape for free expression ahead of the May 2015 general elections, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. In the past year, six privately owned publications closed after government harassment; at least 22 journalists, bloggers, and publishers were criminally charged, and more than 30 journalists fled the country in fear of being arrested under repressive laws.
  • January 21, 2015
  • January 21, 2015
    Thai agricultural workers in Israel face serious labor rights abuses because Israeli authorities are failing to enforce their own laws, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Israeli authorities should take immediate steps to improve its enforcement mechanisms and investigate whether unsatisfactory living and working conditions have contributed to a troubling pattern of deaths among migrant workers from Thailand.
  • January 21, 2015
    Scores of Egyptians died in government custody in 2014, many of them packed into police stations in life-threatening conditions. Yet the authorities have taken no serious steps either to improve detention conditions or to independently investigate detainees’ deaths.
  • January 21, 2015
    Violence and threats against Afghanistan’s journalists by the government and security forces are increasing, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. These attacks put at risk the gains in media freedom in Afghanistan since 2001.
  • January 21, 2015
    The horrific January 7 attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris has led to a raging debate worldwide on the limits to freedom of expression and opinion. In India, a country of many religions and faiths, where tolerance and free expression have long struggled to find common ground, the attack has sparked a crucial discussion.
  • January 20, 2015

    The transfer of a Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) commander to the International Criminal Court (ICC) is an important opportunity to achieve a measure of justice for crimes committed by the rebel group, Human Rights Watch said. Dominic Ongwen arrived in the Netherlands on January 21, 2015, to face charges of four counts of war crimes and three counts of crimes against humanity committed in 2004 in northern Uganda. 

  • January 20, 2015
  • January 20, 2015
    Each year, when school lets out for the summer, children as young as 12 — and sometimes younger — start working long hours tending tobacco in Virginia and other big tobacco states. They absorb nicotine through their skin, get sprayed with pesticides and use sharp axes to hack down rows of tobacco taller than they are — all in the extreme heat and humidity common during the summer months in the South. The work makes many of them sick.
  • January 20, 2015
    Germany’s chancellor Angela Merkel should urge president Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan to free leading human rights defenders, journalists, and other government critics jailed unjustly in Azerbaijan. Merkel is scheduled to meet Aliyev in Berlin on January 21, 2015, to discuss bilateral relations, energy policy, and other issues.
  • January 20, 2015
    Human Rights Watch will present the third edition of the Amsterdam Human Rights Weekend from January 30 to February 1, 2015 at De Balie. The theme is “Reporting Change: Behind the Scenes in the Middle East and North Africa.”
  • January 20, 2015
    Asylum seekers and migrants living in destitution in the port city of Calais experience harassment and abuse at the hands of French police. The abuses described to Human Rights Watch include beatings and attacks with pepper spray as the migrants and asylum seekers walked in the street or hid in trucks in the hope of traveling to the United Kingdom.
  • January 20, 2015
    The Chinese government should radically revise its proposed legislation on counterterrorism to make it consistent with international law and the protection of human rights.
  • January 19, 2015
  • January 19, 2015
  • January 19, 2015
    Lebanon’s religion-based personal status laws discriminate against women across the religious spectrum and don’t guarantee their basic rights, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Lebanon has 15 separate personal status laws for its recognized religions but no civil code covering issues such as divorce, property rights, or care of children. These laws are administered by autonomous religious courts with little or no government oversight, and often issue rulings that violate women’s human rights.
  • January 19, 2015
  • January 19, 2015
    The government of Laos should use the United Nations Human Rights Council review of its record to pledge concrete measures to address its pervasive human rights problems.
  • January 18, 2015
    Bahrain should immediately release the head of the country’s leading political opposition group having failed to present any evidence that justifies his detention, Human Rights Watch said today. Sheikh Ali Salman, the secretary general of Al Wifaq, a legally recognized political society, has been in detention since his arrest on December 29, 2014, and has been charged with various criminal offenses, which include the promotion of violence and defamation of a “statutory body.”
  • January 18, 2015

    In early March 2013 the Russian government launched an unprecedented, nationwide campaign of inspections of thousands of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to identify advocacy groups the government deems “foreign agents” and force them to register as such. This list tracks the legal consequences of the law on dozens of NGOs.

  • January 17, 2015
    Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, claims to have a silver bullet to rid the country of terrorism: military courts.
  • January 16, 2015
  • January 16, 2015
    Evidence of Boko Haram's deadly attack in Nigeria; a bombing in Yemen goes hardly noticed; and confronting intolerance in France in the aftermath of Charlie Hebdo - these were among the most popular posts to Dispatches...
  • January 16, 2015

    Dramatic evidence presented at the trial in Chad of 21 former security agents confirms that torture was systematic during the Hissène Habré dictatorship, from 1982 to 1990.

  • January 16, 2015
    Bahrain’s allies including the United Kingdom, Germany, France and other European countries should publicly call on Manama to drop charges against the human rights advocate Nabeel Rajab, Human Rights Watch and the Gulf Center for Human Rights said today.
  • January 15, 2015
  • January 15, 2015
    On December 3, officials at Jeddah’s King Abdulaziz International Airport prevented Samar Badawi from leaving Saudi Arabia to advocate abroad for the release of her husband, Waleed Abu al-Khair. A lawyer and human rights activist, he is in prison, facing a 15-year term for peacefully criticizing Saudi authorities on Twitter and in television interviews.
  • January 15, 2015
    Hopes are high that Ukraine finally has a government that can learn from the past to foster needed reforms. But some of Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s comments last week during a visit to Berlin raise questions about whether the government is willing to admit its own errors.
  • January 14, 2015
    The ICC is no guarantee that attacks will cease, but it provides a disincentive, and an avenue of redress.
  • January 14, 2015
    When I mentioned to a diplomat that Jan. 14 would mark 30 years since Cambodian strongman Hun Sen became prime minister, his response summed up the pathology of forgetful international diplomacy: “Is that monster still around? How did that happen?”
  • January 14, 2015
    A prominent human rights lawyer in Tajikistan was sentenced on January 13, 2015, to nine years in prison following a politically motivated trial. The case against the lawyer, Shukhrat Kudratov, struck a blow to freedom of expression and the independence of the legal profession in Tajikistan.
  • January 14, 2015