• Whether it is an oil company that relies on abusive private security forces, a tech company that censors or spies on users at the behest of a repressive government, or a corrupt government that siphons off the wealth of its nation, businesses and other economic activities can have negative impacts on people’s rights. Human Rights Watch investigates these and other situations to expose the problems, hold institutions accountable, and develop standards to prevent these activities. This work has included research and advocacy on human rights problems caused by corruption in resource-rich countries such as Equatorial Guinea, Angola, Nigeria, and Burma.
  • Members of the Boeung Kak Lake community in Cambodia demonstrate at a police blockade in December 2012 on the second day of community activist Yorm Bopha’s trial, on trumped up charges apparently brought for speaking out on forced evictions linked to a World Bank financed project.
    The World Bank Group has done little to prevent or dissuade governments from intimidating critics of the projects it funds, or monitor for reprisals, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.
  • Without Rules: A Failed Approach to Corporate Accountability

    By Christopher Albin-Lackey, senior researcher

    Some of the most powerful and sophisticated actors on the world stage are companies, not governments. In 2011 alone, oil and gas behemoth ExxonMobil generated revenues of US$467 billion—the size of Norway’s entire economy. Walmart, the world’s third-largest employer with more than 2 million workers, has a workforce that trails only the militaries of the United States and China in size.

    Many global businesses are run with consideration for the well-being of the people whose lives they touch. But others—whether through incompetence or by design—seriously harm the communities around them, their workers, and even the governments under which they work.

    Read the full essay >>

Reports

Business

  • Jun 17, 2015
    Governments should promote the use of strong encryption and protect anonymous expression online. In an era of unprecedentedly broad and intrusive government surveillance, these tools often offer the only safe way for people in repressive environments to express themselves freely.
  • Jun 17, 2015
    The undersigned civil society organizations and independent experts work to promote human rights and press freedom online. We welcome the report of the Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression on the use of encryption and anonymity in digital communication (A/HRC/29/32), which was presented at the UN Human Rights Council on June 17.
  • May 27, 2015
    We, the undersigned individuals and organizations, are writing to you to express our strong concerns about the prosecution on criminal defamation charges of journalist Rafael Marques de Morais. Despite what was understood to have been a negotiated agreement between Mr. Marques de Morais and government authorities late last week, we are deeply concerned that that agreement is now being reversed. Instead, it appears that the court will issue a verdict in the case later this week; a conviction could result in a prison sentence and the indefinite revocation of his passport.
  • May 19, 2015
    As the Senate considers the USA Freedom Act this week, policymakers should strengthen it by limiting large-scale collection of records and reinforcing transparency and carrying court reforms further. The Senate should also take care not to weaken the bill, and should reject any amendments that would require companies to retain personal data for longer than is necessary for business purposes.
  • May 13, 2015
  • May 11, 2015
  • Apr 30, 2015
    The United States Congress should swiftly pass the USA Freedom Act to thwart bulk data collection and improve transparency and oversight of surveillance in the US. The House Judiciary Committee approved the bill on April 30, 2015.
  • Apr 30, 2015
    The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and its shareholder countries should urge the Azerbaijani government to end its crackdown on activists and independent groups during the bank’s upcoming meeting. The Asian Development Bank, a multilateral finance institution based in Manila, will hold its 48th annual board of governors meeting in Baku, Azerbaijan’s capital, from May 2 to 5, 2015.
  • Apr 23, 2015
    The United States Senate should definitively end bulk data collection and reject a new bill that would endorse and extend the National Security Agency’s mass violation of privacy rights in the US.
  • Apr 22, 2015