• Human Rights Watch leverages our research on countries and issues addressed at the United Nations to inform UN officials and member states of key findings, influence policy on a wide range of discussions and push for urgent action on human rights crises. Consistent with the Human Rights up Front framework initiated by the UN Secretary-General, our mission is to ensure human rights considerations are at the heart of various debates, branches and mechanisms of the United Nations. We engage members of the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Human Rights Council, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), and other key departments of the UN Secretariat, present information from independent investigations, and advocate for protection of civilians, accountability for past abuses, and preventive measures against future violations.


  • Child picking cotton in September 2012, Suyima Prakhtakor, Jizzakh.
    The adoption by the International Labour Organization (ILO) on June 11, 2014, of a landmark new treaty will advance the fight to prevent forced labor, and to protect and compensate the estimated 21 million victims worldwide, Human Rights Watch said today. Governments, trade unions, and employers’ organizations that make up the ILO overwhelmingly voted to adopt the ILO Protocol on Forced Labor, which updates a widely-ratified, but outdated, 1930 treaty in order to better address contemporary abuses, including against migrants and in the private sector.


United Nations

  • May 15, 2015
    A submission by Human Rights Watch featuring our comments on the promotion and protection of human rights in the context of the world drug problem, in the lead-up to the UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on Drugs scheduled for April 2016.
  • May 13, 2015
    Ten years ago security forces gunned down hundreds of protesters in the city of Andjian, eastern Uzbekistan. The massacre on May 13, 2005 was one of the largest mass killings in the former Soviet Union outside of an armed conflict since the fall of Communism. It sent shockwaves around the world, highlighting the brutal human rights record of Uzbekistan’s authoritarian president, Islam Karimov, who remains in power.
  • May 12, 2015

    13 May 2015 will mark the tenth anniversary of the massacre at Andijan, during which state security forces shot and killed hundreds of mostly unarmed protesters. In the decade since, the Uzbek government has steadfastly refused to allow an independent investigation into the killings. It has also relentlessly persecuted those it suspects of having witnessed or participated in the events.

  • May 7, 2015
    The US, EU, and other governments should speak out about human rights abuses in Uzbekistan on the 10th anniversary of the Andijan massacre and renew their calls for accountability, Human Rights Watch said in a video released today.
  • Apr 14, 2015
    The United Nations Security Council should act to prevent and address sexual violence in armed conflict, including promoting greater participation of women in peacebuilding efforts, Human Rights Watch said today. On April 13, 2015, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon made public a report on conflict-related sexual violence in 19 countries during 2014 that described challenges due to poor monitoring, limited support services, and lack of accountability.
  • Apr 13, 2015
  • Apr 1, 2015
    Human Rights Watch welcomes the holding of a long overdue Special Session on the human rights crisis affecting Northern Nigeria and neighboring countries and the devastating toll for civilians caught up in the conflict.
  • Mar 27, 2015
    The United Nations Human Rights Council has missed a key opportunity to address war crimes and rights abuses by all sides to the conflict in Iraq. The council adopted a resolution on the Iraq conflict by consensus on March 27, 2015, that denounces atrocities by the extremist group Islamic State (also known as ISIS), but failed to condemn the abuses by militias, volunteer fighters, and Iraqi forces.
  • Mar 26, 2015
    UN Human Rights Council members on March 26, 2015, took an important step in global efforts to protect privacy on the internet, as well as more broadly, Human Rights Watch said today. The council unanimously agreed to appoint a new UN special rapporteur, or expert, on the right to privacy.
  • Mar 26, 2015