The World Bank has closed its eyes to risks to the human rights of the very people it seeks to benefit. The bank lacks adequate checks to guard against funding human rights abuse. The bank’s board will meet as part of its ongoing policy review, which provides an opportunity to remedy this policy gap, in Washington on July 23, 2013.
The political negotiations over Syria, now set to continue next month in Geneva, will be tortuous and lengthy at best, while the Syrian government and certain opposition groups continue to commit horrible abuses against innocent civilians. But that doesn’t mean there’s nothing the international community can do in the meantime—especially to ease the plight of civilians suffering at the hands of their own government.
World leaders should commit to fully integrating human rights into the post-2015 global development agenda and targets when they meet at a special event at the United Nations General Assembly on September 25.
The Israeli government should announce an immediate moratorium on demolitions of “illegal” homes of Bedouin citizens. The government demolishes Bedouin homes based on discriminatory laws and rules, and without respect for the Bedouins’ dignity or the country’s human rights obligations.
The World Bank’s ongoing safeguards policy review should set in motion an overdue reform process to finally ground the World Bank in international human rights law. Such reform is essential if the World Bank is to meaningfully achieve its recently adopted goals to end extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity in complex environments like Vietnam.
Government corruption and mismanagement plague Indonesia’s forestry sector, with serious consequences for human rights and the environment, Human Rights Watch said in a report. The smog roiling Indonesia and its neighbors is partly a result of Indonesia’s ‘green growth’ strategy, which involves clearing forests for the rapid expansion of oil palm and pulp plantations.
The Iranian government is increasingly violating workers’ rights to peaceful assembly and association. Dozens of labor and independent trade union activists are in prison for speaking out in defense of workers.Human Rights Watch called for the government to end the crackdown and free labor rights advocates in anticipation of International Workers’ Day on May 1, as part of a joint campaign by Iranian and international rights groups to highlight the plight of workers.