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Important Problems Remain

UK troops who commit war crimes and crimes against humanity overseas, can still be prosecuted in UK courts. In May the UK government reversed course on a plan that would have effectively immunized from prosecution UK forces who allegedly committed…
The International Criminal Court, or ICC, is seen in The Hague, Netherlands, November 7, 2019. 
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After Pledging Reforms, UK Development Bank Should Implement Them

A United Kingdom development bank, CDC Group, has taken another step toward addressing human rights abuses at oil palm plantations in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In May, the bank committed to reforming its complaints mechanism and adopting a…
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For the last twenty years in the UK, some politicians and sections of the media have led a relentless attack on human rights, grossly misrepresenting the UK Human Rights Act as a charter for criminals and a barrier to common sense.  In the face of this…
Women gather in Parliament Square for a protest in support of legal abortion in Northern Ireland, Britain, June 24, 2017.
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The Union Flag flies near the Houses of Parliament in London, Britain, June 7, 2017.
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Judges of the European Court of Human Rights sit in the courtroom during a hearing at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France.
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A member of security stands guard inside the Supreme Court in London, Britain, January 23, 2017.
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Flags are seen at the EU Commission headquarters ahead of a first full round of talks on Brexit, Britain's divorce terms from the European Union, in Brussels, Belgium July 17, 2017.
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A man and a woman walk past a Polish shop in Boston, Britain June 27, 2016.
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Armed police respond outside Parliament during an incident on Westminster Bridge.
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People wave at a European Union flag during an EU parade, in Warsaw May 15, 2005.
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Why is Human Rights Watch calling for an arms embargo on Saudi Arabia? Human Rights Watch’s call for suspending all weapons sales to Saudi Arabia comes after a year of documenting numerous unlawful airstrikes by the Saudi-led…
News

Questions and Answers

The European Union (EU) is facing unprecedented numbers of refugees and migrants arriving by boat. In 2014, 220,000 people arrived, almost double the combined total of 121,000 from 2011 through 2013. During just the first six…
Un buque de la Armada irlandesa Le Eithne, participa en una operación de rescate como parte del operativo Frontex Tritón, el 6 de junio de 2015
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A court ruling in London yesterday marked a rare victory in the search for justice for torture and other abuses by the UK, US, and allies in the years after the attacks of September 11, 2001. The London case involves Abdul Hakim Belhadj, a former…
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1. Would the UK be better off if the Human Rights Act was replaced by a new Bill of Rights? There is a case for strengthening human rights protection in the UK with additional safeguards or a wider set of rights entitlements than those already set out in…
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The message couldn’t be clearer. In a report published today, the parliamentary committee tasked with reviewing the UK government’s draft Modern Slavery Bill calls on the government to immediately restore the right for migrant domestic workers to change…
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Human Rights Watch Research on Returned Tamils Facing Torture in Sri Lanka Cited

The seven ethnic Tamil men waited on the tarmac of a London airport last May, literally minutes from take-off and from being deported to Sri Lanka. British authorities had rejected their applications for asylum, despite increasing information that Tamils…
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In the UK today, the idea of human rights is under attack from politicians and some sections of the media. The criticism largely relates to the application of human rights law within the UK, rather than the pursuit of human rights objectives through UK…
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on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office 2011 Report: Human Rights and Democracy

1.      Human Rights Watch welcomes the publication of the Foreign Office annual report on human rights and democracy. As in previous years, we note the clear language set out in the Foreign Secretary’s Foreword and in Section II on the FCO's Human Rights…
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Improve Safeguards to Ensure Rights to Liberty and Fair Hearings

(London) - The United Kingdom's system of "control orders" to restrict the day-to-day activities of terrorism suspects should be amended to comply with international human rights standards, Human Rights Watch said in a letter to Parliament released today…
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Revise Policies to Ensure Fair Hearing

(London) - The ruling today by the European Court of Human Rights on the United Kingdom's detention policy for foreign terrorism suspects confirms that indefinite detention violates basic rights, Human Rights Watch said. The court ruled that the…
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On October 6, the British government announced that it will allow Iraqi interpreters and other key support staff to settle in the United Kingdom. Iraqis who worked for British forces are particularly vulnerable to being targeted by insurgents and militia…
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Following high-profile media reports about Iraqi interpreters whose lives are threatened because they worked for British forces, the British government announced on August 7 that it will review its policy of non-preferential treatment for Iraqi employees…
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On March 23, 2007 Iranian forces detained 15 British sailors and marines in the mouth of the Shatt al-Arab waterway, which runs between Iranian and Iraqi territory.   The Iranians say the British personnel were detained because they were in Iranian…
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Questions and Answers

  What are "diplomatic assurances" against torture? Why is the use of diplomatic assurances growing? Why do governments seek these assurances? Do diplomatic assurances work? Have people who were sent back with diplomatic assurances actually been…