• A gold mine near Nakibat and Nakiloro, Rupa, Moroto.
    Uganda’s nascent mining industry could do more harm than good for indigenous people unless the government makes reforms and mining companies start respecting rights, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Uganda’s government has promoted private investment in mining in the remote northeastern Karamoja region to bring economic development, but should implement reforms to respect the rights of indigenous people to determine how their lands are used.
  • 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 >>

Reports

World Bank, IMF

  • Jul 1, 2014
    World Bank President Jim Kim has taken some steps to advance the Bank’s respect for human rights but hasn't put in place adequate checks to guard against funding rights abuse, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today on his second anniversary as World Bank president.
  • Jul 1, 2014
    Since Jim Yong Kim took office as the president of the World Bank Group on July 1, 2012, he has overseen meaningful advances in tackling discrimination, in certain instances improved its analysis of and response to human rights risks, and worked to learn from the Group’s past mistakes. To be effective, these advances need to be broadened and institutionalized.
  • Jun 26, 2014
    The Tajik government says it desperately needs Rogun, which will be one of the world’s tallest dams, to meet its electricity needs. But its reservoir will displace over 42,000 people from small mountain villages upstream from the dam site. Khorsheed, whose name has been changed, and many others I interviewed about the project said their situation is dire.
  • Jun 25, 2014
    The Tajikistan government has shortchanged hundreds of families resettled to make way for a large-scale hydroelectric dam. Despite government commitments to comply with international standards on resettlement that protect the rights of those displaced, it has not provided the necessary compensation to displaced families to replace their homes or restore their livelihoods.
  • Jun 20, 2014
    As you may be aware, the Co-Chairs of the United Nations General Assembly Open Working Group on Sustainable Development released on June 2 their “zero draft” of suggested sustainable development goals and related targets. This was mandated by the Rio+20 outcome document, and is in preparation for next week’s informal consultations in advance of Open Working Group Session 12. These informal consultations are a very important moment for governments to build on the many positive features of this draft, but also to strengthen it in some significant areas.
  • Jun 13, 2014
    We are writing regarding the ‘lessons learned’ presentation given by IFC to the Board on 4 April and to civil society on 8 April. While we welcome much in that document, on balance, as civil society organisations that have engaged with the IFC over many years, we feel a deep concern that this exercise will not produce the changes needed to avoid future harm to communities and the environment from IFC investments and to ensure a better impact of IFC projects on development. This concern arises from two specific issues: a number of serious omissions in the content of the lessons learned document; and a lack of clarity about the future process of how these lessons will be followed through, to implementation, as well as monitoring and evaluation.
  • Jun 9, 2014
    The World Bank should not proceed with projects directly benefiting Uzbekistan’s cotton industry until the Uzbek government has taken meaningful steps to end grave human rights violations in cotton production, including forced labor.
  • May 27, 2014
    An approach to country engagement that analyses, articulates, and addresses human rights risks is critical to meeting the “twin goals” of ending extreme poverty and promoting shared prosperity. The World Bank Group’s New Approach to Country Engagement as outlined in the 2013 World Bank Group Strategy can be a meaningful first step to achieving this. It presents the Group with an opportunity to both identify key obstacles to poverty reduction and inclusive growth, including human rights obstacles, and align priorities with the steps needed to tackle such challenges.
  • Apr 26, 2014
    “Right cause, wrong battle” (April 12) contends that World Bank President Jim Kim’s recent moves to tackle discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation will make it harder for the bank to achieve its goals. But in practice eliminating discrimination is crucial for effective, sustainable development. And in principle World Bank activities, and sustainable development efforts more broadly, should be based upon universal access and non-discrimination.
  • Apr 9, 2014
    The World Bank’s “Safeguard” policies are meant to prevent harm to communities and the environment in Bank lending, but they do not adequately protect human rights. For example, the Bank will not lend for projects that might violate a country’s international environmental commitments, but a country’s human rights obligations can be ignored.