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Precedent for a Political Declaration on Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas

Summary and Recommendations States are currently engaged in a political process to address the consequences of using explosive weapons in populated areas. That process was launched in October 2019 when more than 130 states…
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World Leaders, Journalists Should Demand Accounting for Rights Abuses

  (Beirut) – Saudi Arabia’s admission that government representatives killed Jamal Khashoggi at its Istanbul consulate on October 2, 2018 has sparked intensified and overdue scrutiny of the country’s human…
 Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi
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October 2015 Introduction This memorandum, submitted to the United Nations Committee Against Torture (“the Committee”) ahead of its upcoming review of Azerbaijan, highlights areas of concern Human Rights Watch hopes will inform the…
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Paths to Curbing the Use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas

Tens of thousands of civilians are killed and injured every year from the use in populated areas of explosive weapons, such as mortars, rockets, artillery projectiles, and aircraft bombs, including barrel bombs. As civilian casualties multiply,…
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The phrase “explosive weapons in populated areas” is an emerging term in the field of international humanitarian law. The weapons involved and the impact such weapons have on civilians, however, are not new. Human Rights Watch has for decades researched…
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Submission on the Global Legally Binding Instrument on Mercury - October 2011

In many poor rural areas around the world, men, women, and children work in artisanal gold mining to make a living. Artisanal or small-scale mining is mining through labor-intensive, low-tech methods, and belongs to the informal sector of economy. It is…
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Detentions, Torture, Killings, Military Trials Since Protests Began

(Washington, DC) - The Bahrain government, since March 2011, has been carrying out a punitive and vindictive campaign of violent repression against its own citizens, Human Rights Watch said in a briefing paper released today. "Bahrain's Human Rights…
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What concerns does Human Rights Watch have about the latest release of thousands of US diplomatic cables by WikiLeaks? Should Julian Assange be prosecuted? Does international law address situations like the WikiLeaks releases? How is "national…
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A Human Rights Platform for Candidates

On March 7, Iraq's voters will head to the polls nationwide to select all 325 members of parliament. The election will be a key indicator on whether the country is moving toward greater political stability and respect for human rights and away from the…
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1. Is Kazakhstan the right choice for the OSCE chair in 2010? Kazakhstan was a highly controversial choice because of its poor record of adherence to OSCE human rights principles. For that reason, Kazakhstan was unsuccessful in its chairmanship bids in…
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New UAE Media Law Continues to Stifle Press

Executive Summary The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is currently considering revisions to its media law.  On January 20 2009, the UAE's legislature, the Federal National Council, passed the draft law, which was drawn up by the National Media Council. It…
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Introduction A series of prosecutions of independent weeklies, the most outspoken and critical sector of the Moroccan news media, show the continuing limits on press freedom in that country. The courts over the past year have convicted at least four…
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A Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

Respect for human rights in the November 2005 parliamentary elections in Azerbaijan fell far short of international standards, with serious violations occurring both prior to and on election day. These shortcomings once again underscored the urgent need…
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A Human Rights Watch Background Briefing

Two years after the April 4, 2002, ceasefire agreement between the Angolan government and the opposition National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA), Angola is in transition. Although no date has been set for the first national elections…