Reports

Protecting Voting Rights in the US during the Covid-19 Pandemic

The 83-page report, “What Democracy Looks Like: Protecting Voting Rights in the US during the Covid-19 Pandemic,” examines changes that election officials made in response to the Covid-19 pandemic prior to the 2020 primaries in Arizona, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Wisconsin and their impact on the right to vote. Human Rights Watch recommended steps US election officials should take for the November election and beyond to prevent violations of voting rights, which during the primaries had discriminatory impacts on Black and Latinx people.

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  • Social Media Platforms Remove Evidence of War Crimes

    The 42-page report, “‘Video Unavailable’: Social Media Platforms Remove Evidence of War Crimes,” urges all stakeholders, including social media platforms, to come together to develop an independent mechanism to preserve potential evidence of serious crimes.

  • Plight of Canadians Held in Northeast Syria for Alleged ISIS Links

    The 92-page report, “‘Bring Me Back To Canada’: Plight of Canadians Held in Northeast Syria for Alleged ISIS Links,” says that Canada has not brought home any of the estimated 47 Canadians – 8 men, 13 women, and 26 children – detained for more than a year in overcrowded, filthy, and life-threatening conditions.

  • Failure to Uncover the Fate of Syria’s Missing

    This report highlights 27 cases of individuals or groups apprehended by ISIS and last heard of in its custody before the group’s military defeat.

  • Possession of Extremist Material in Kyrgyzstan

    This report finds that in some cases, suspects are charged for possessing material that the authorities classified as extremist only after their arrests. Several suspects told Human Rights Watch that police and security agents had planted the material during searches, then demanded payoffs to end investigations.

  • Abuses by Armed Islamists and Security Forces in Burkina Faso

    This report documents the killings and harassment of villagers in the Sahel region caught between Islamists’ threats to execute those who collaborated with the government, and the security forces, who expected them to provide intelligence about the presence of armed groups, and meted out collective punishment when they d

  • Abuses under Sri Lanka’s Prevention of Terrorism Act

    This report documents previous and ongoing abuses committed under the PTA, including torture and sexual abuse, forced confessions, and systematic denials of due process.

  • Accountability for ISIS Crimes in Iraq

    The 76-page report, “Flawed Justice: Accountability for ISIS Crimes in Iraq,” examines the screening, detention, investigation, and prosecution of some of the thousands of Islamic State (also known as ISIS) suspects in Iraq.

  • Iraqi Kurdish Forces' Destruction of Villages, Homes in Conflict with ISIS

    This report looked at destruction of homes between September 2014 and May 2016 in disputed areas of Kirkuk and Nineveh governorates, areas nominally under Iraqi government jurisdiction but under Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) control.

  • Belgium’s Counterterror Responses to the Paris and Brussels Attacks

    This report details measures that place prisoners detained for terrorism in prolonged isolation, and allow the government to suspend passports and review terrorism suspects’ phone and email logs without judicial approval.

  • Turkey’s Post-Coup Suspension of Safeguards Against Torture

    This report documents how the weakening of safeguards through decrees adopted under the state of emergency has negatively affected police detention conditions and the rights of detainees.

  • Life under ISIS in Sirte, Libya

    The report, “‘We Feel We Are Cursed’: Life under ISIS in Sirte, Libya,” also finds that ISIS is inflicting severe hardship on the local population by diverting food, medicine, fuel, and cash, along with homes it seized from residents who fled, to fighters and functionaries it has amassed in the Mediterranean port city.

  • A Roadmap to Justice for CIA Torture

    This 153-page report sets out evidence to support the main criminal charges that can be brought against those responsible for state-sanctioned torture, and challenges claims that prosecutions are not legally possible.

  • How Large-Scale US Surveillance is Harming Journalism, Law, and American Democracy

    The 120-page report documents how national security journalists and lawyers are adopting elaborate steps or otherwise modifying their practices to keep communications, sources, and other confidential information secure in light of revelations of unprecedented US government surveillance of electronic communications and t

  • Human Rights Abuses in US Terrorism Prosecutions

    The 214-page report examines 27 federal terrorism cases from initiation of the investigations to sentencing and post-conviction conditions of confinement.

  • Killings of Shia Hazara in Balochistan, Pakistan

    The 62-page report documents Sunni militant group attacks on the mostly Shia Hazara community in Balochistan.