Tunisia: a Lawsuit Against the Human Rights League, an Assault on All Rights Activists

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An impending appeals court ruling in Tunisia threatens to undermine the Arab world's oldest independent human rights organization, according to a report released today by Human Rights Watch and the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders. The Observatory is a joint program of the International Federation for Human Rights and the World Organization against Torture. The 28-page report, "A Lawsuit against the Human Rights League, An Assault on All Rights Activists," also accuses the government of Tunisia of waging an all-out campaign against human rights critics, including heavy-handed police actions to block meetings of human rights organizations, physical assaults on men and women activists, passport confiscations, and interruptions in phone service. Human Rights Watch and the Observatory urged the governments of France, and of all the European Union, to monitor the appeals court case against the league that opens April 30, and to pressure the Tunisian government to stop its harassment of human rights monitors.