• Despite great strides made by the international women’s rights movement over many years, women and girls around the world are still married as children or trafficked into forced labor and sex slavery. They are refused access to education and political participation, and some are trapped in conflicts where rape is perpetrated as a weapon of war. Around the world, deaths related to pregnancy and childbirth are needlessly high, and women are prevented from making deeply personal choices in their private lives. Human Rights Watch is working toward the realization of women’s empowerment and gender equality—protecting the rights and improving the lives of women and girls on the ground.

  • Uganda People’s Defence Forces soldiers detain men suspected to be militia members on July 6, 2014, after attacks on Bundibugyo town in western Uganda.
    The government response to deadly ethnic violence and reprisals in the Rwenzori region of western Uganda in July 2014 has been inadequate. The government should arrange for a credible independent investigation to examine the circumstances of the initial attacks, the subsequent response – including the possible involvement of government forces in reprisal attacks and torture, and the adequacy of protection for civilians in the following days.

Reports

Women's Rights

  • Nov 23, 2014
    Labor ministers from Gulf and Asian countries meeting on November 26 and 27, 2014, should improve labor law protection, reform abusive immigration policies, and increase dialogue with trade unions and nongovernmental groups, 90 human rights organizations and unions said today.
  • Nov 17, 2014
    The Indonesian government subjects female applicants for Indonesia’s National Police to discriminatory and degrading “virginity tests,” Human Rights Watch said today.
  • Nov 17, 2014
    The United Kingdom House of Lords should amend a draft law on “modern slavery” to include protections from abuse for migrant domestic workers. The upper chamber of the UK parliament is scheduled to begin its review of the bill on November 17, 2014.
  • Nov 12, 2014
  • Nov 10, 2014
  • Nov 7, 2014
    Iran’s judiciary should quash the conviction of Ghoncheh Ghavami for “propaganda against the state” and immediately release her since the charge is on its face a punishment for peaceful speech and protest. Ghavami, a dual Iranian-British national, was arrested June 30, 2014 after protesting a ban on women attending volleyball matches. She began a hunger strike on November 2 to protest her detention, her brother Iman Ghavami told Human Rights Watch.
  • Nov 6, 2014
    Sex trafficking gets a lot of attention, as it should. It’s a horrific crime. But trafficking in forced labor is also a grave abuse that has even more victims.
  • Nov 3, 2014
    People with HIV and AIDS are routinely denied care within Yemen’s health care system, Human Rights Watch said in an October 2014 letter to the Yemeni minister of health released today. Yemeni authorities should end discrimination by health workers against people with HIV and ensure patients’ equal access to healthcare services, as mandated by a 2009 law.
  • Oct 30, 2014
    In Geneva over the next two weeks, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) will play an influential role on the Governing Body of the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Yet Human Rights Watch (HRW) has documented how within the UAE migrant domestic workers are exploited by employers and recruiters, while government policies create conditions which foster abuse and forced labour.
  • Oct 29, 2014
    Child marriage in Tanzania limits girls’ access to education and exposes them to serious harms. Human Rights Watch documented cases in which girls as young as seven were married. The government should set 18 as the minimum marriage age for girls and boys as a first step toward eradicating child marriage and improving the lives of girls and women.