• 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.
  • A Human Rights Agenda for the World Bank’s New President
    By Jessica Evans, Senior Researcher/Advocate for International Financial Institutions

    The World Bank has historically been resistant to addressing human rights. But in the wake of the Arab Spring, it cannot ignore the importance of free speech, association, and assembly to sustainable development. Nor can it continue to turn a blind eye to governments shepherding funds primarily to its supporters with the hope that at least some resources will reach those in need. As the World Bank’s new president, Jim Yong Kim has the opportunity to lead the Bank into a new era by using its voice and resources to bridge the false divide between human rights and development.

    Read the full op-ed >>


World Bank, IMF

  • 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 15, 2015
    The World Bank’s action plan responding to an internal review on the bank’s resettlement practices does not address the serious failings the review found, 85 nongovernmental organizations and independent experts from 37 countries said in a letter to the World Bank president, Jim Yong Kim.
  • Apr 14, 2015
    We write in response to the World Bank’s Involuntary Resettlement Portfolio Review, and the Action Plan intended to address the findings of the Review, both released last month. As you have recognized, the findings of the Portfolio Review are deeply troubling. They reveal fundamental failures in the Bank’s safeguards system and are a matter of urgent public concern.
  • Apr 8, 2015
  • Apr 7, 2015
    Human Rights Watch welcomes the update and review of the World Bank’s safeguards, and sees this as an important, overdue opportunity for the World Bank to bring its own standards into line with international human rights law. This submission on the draft framework should be read together with Human Rights Watch’s detailed initial submission to the bank’s safeguards review, which remains relevant both in its recommendations and rationale for why human rights should be central for the World Bank.
  • Apr 2, 2015
    The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank can contribute to the urgent socio-economic needs of people throughout the region, but only if member countries ensure its respect for rights.
  • Mar 25, 2015
    Burma’s government has failed to engage in meaningful public consultation on a draft investment law that could have a profound impact on human rights in the country.
  • Mar 18, 2015
  • Feb 23, 2015
    The World Bank should fully address serious human rights issues raised by the bank’s internal investigation into a project in Ethiopia, Human Rights Watch said in a letter to the bank’s vice president for Africa. The bank’s response to the investigation findings attempts to distance the bank from the many problems confirmed by the investigation and should be revised. The World Bank board of directors is to consider the investigation report and management’s response, which includes an Action Plan, on February 26, 2015.
  • Feb 15, 2015
    We write to you ahead of the Asian Development Bank’s annual meeting in Baku, Azerbaijan, this May. We welcome the ADB’s recognition of the importance of participation and accountability for effective development. In light of the bank’s commitment to these important principles, we write to share with you deeply disturbing developments in Azerbaijan and to recommend key steps that the ADB should take ahead of the annual meeting in Baku to respond to these developments.