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  • Syria's Tadmor Prison

    Dissent Still Hostage to a Legacy of Terror

    In December 1995, some 1,200 political prisoners in Syria were released pursuant to an amnesty marking the 25th anniversary of the rule of Pres. Asad. It was widely reported that most, if not all, of the released prisoners were members or supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood.

  • Power Versus Choice

    Human Rights and Parliamentary Elections in the Islamic Republic of Iran

    Iranians voted on March 8, 1996, to elect 270 members of the parliament, or Majles, in an election process that severely limited citizen participation. Parliamentary elections could represent a real contest for power in Iran’s political system—but only if arbitrary bans on candidates and other constraints on political life are lifted.

  • Human Rights in Post-Communist Albania

    For decades Albania was eastern Europe's most closed and repressive state. During his 40-year reign, former communist leader Enver Hoxha banned religion, forbade travel and outlawed private property. Any resistance to his rule was met with brutal retribution, including internal exile, long-term imprisonment or execution.

  • Human Rights in Bosnia-Hercegovina Post Dayton

    Challenges for the Field

    The Dayton accord offered the promise of a lasting peace because it incorporated both military enforcement and strong mechanisms to protect human rights and ensure accountability for past abuses, including the High Representative, the International Police Task Force, the OSCE's human rights and election monitoring mission, and the Office of the Ombudsperson.

  • Chinese Orphanages

    A Follow Up

    The publication of Death By Default on January 7, 1996 was followed by several weeks of intense coverage of the report by the international news media.

  • Torture and Other Abuses During the 1995 Crackdown on Alleged Zapatistas

    In February 1995, Pres. Zedillo ordered a crackdown on the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN). As the Mexican army fought to regain territory in which the Zapatistas had operated since January 1994, federal and state police worked in tandem to arrest men and women accused of leading or supporting the Zapatistas.

  • Between War & Peace:

    Arms Trade and Human Rights Abuses since the Lusaka Protocol

    In updating our 1994 report, Arms Trade & Violations of the Laws of War in Angola, we found that despite the signing of the Lusaka Protocol between the Angolan government and UNITA that led to a cease-fire, sporadic fighting continued in 1995.

  • Human Rights Abuses during a Cease-Fire and Peace Negotiations

    Areas of northwestern Bosnia under Bosnian Serb control were the site of a brutal endgame of “ethnic cleansing,” murder, and rape, even as a cease-fire and the Dayton accord were negotiated. In the fall of 1995, more than 6,000 non-Serbs were systematically and brutally driven from their homes.

  • Return to Violence

    Refugees, Civil Patrollers, and Impunity

    Tens of thousands of Guatemalans fled systematic army repression between 1980 and 1983, flooding southern Mexico with refugees. Hundreds of thousands more were estimated to be displaced internally. Recent cases of state violence against returning refugees cast serious doubts on the Guatemalan government's commitment to ensure safe repatriation and foster the rule of law in rural areas.