From rape used as a weapon in war in Central African Republic to abuses by Spanish police in Catalonia and Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s murderous “war on drugs,” here are Human Rights Watch’s top-viewed videos of the year.

10. Armed groups in the Central African Republic have used rape and sexual slavery as a tactic of war across the country during nearly five years of conflict. Commanders, in some cases, appear to have ordered it.

Armed groups are using rape in a brutal, calculated way to punish and terrorize women and girls. Every day, survivors live with the devastating aftermath of rape, and the knowledge that their attackers are walking free, perhaps holding positions of power, and to date facing no consequences whatsoever.

9. The Islamic State (also known as ISIS) executed and dumped the bodies of possibly hundreds of detainees near Mosul, Iraq, then laid improvised landmines at the site.

The Islamic State (also known as ISIS) executed and dumped the bodies of possibly hundreds of detainees at a site near Mosul.

 

8. Doctors in the United States are performing medically unnecessary surgeries that can inflict permanent harm on intersex children – even though the surgeries could be safely deferred.

Doctors in the United States continue to perform medically unnecessary surgeries that can inflict permanent harm on intersex children. 

7. Rohingya Muslims fleeing Burmese security forces in Burma’s Rakhine State have described killings, shelling, and arson in their villages – all of which has the hallmarks of “ethnic cleansing."

Burmese security forces have committed widespread rape against women and girls as part of a campaign of ethnic cleansing against Rohingya Muslims in Burma’s Rakhine State.

6. Spanish police engaged in excessive force when confronting demonstrators in Catalonia during a disputed referendum on Catalonia’s independence.

Spanish police engaged in excessive force when confronting demonstrators in Catalonia during a disputed referendum, using batons to hit non-threatening protestors and causing multiple injuries.

5. Pakistani authorities have used abuses and threats to drive out nearly 600,000 Afghans, including 365,000 registered refugees between July 2016 and July 2017 – the world’s largest mass forced return of refugees in years.

Pakistani authorities have carried out a campaign of abuses and threats to drive out nearly 600,000 Afghans since July 2016.

4. Last spring, when tens of thousands of Venezuelans protested against Venezuela’s increasingly authoritarian government, security forces shot demonstrators beat and shot at people and arbitrarily arrested hundreds.

The scale and brutality of violent repression by Venezuelan security forces is evident in video footage shot in recent months, Human Rights Watch said in a multimedia piece released today. 

3. Egypt’s regular police and National Security officers routinely torture political detainees with techniques including beatings, electric shocks, stress positions, and sometimes rape.

Under President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Egypt’s regular police and National Security officers routinely torture political detainees with techniques including beatings, electric shocks, stress positions, and sometimes rape. 

2. New evidence supports the conclusion that Syrian government forces have used nerve agents on at least four occasions between December 2016 and April 2017. The April chemical attack on Khan Sheikhoun killed at least 92 people.

New evidence supports the conclusion that Syrian government forces have used nerve agents on at least four occasions in recent months: on April 4, 2017, in a chemical attack on Khan Sheikhoun that killed at least 90 people, and on three other occasions in December 2016 and March 2017. 

And the top-viewed video of the year:

Philippine police are falsifying evidence to justify unlawful killings in a “war on drugs” – backed by President Rodrigo Duterte – that has caused more than 12,000 deaths over the past 16 months.

Philippine police are falsifying evidence to justify unlawful killings in a “war on drugs” that has caused more than 7,000 deaths.