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COVID-19 in Europe, the Central Eurasian Region, and Turkey

What are some of your biggest concerns about the coronavirus moving through Europe and Central Asia? Europe is one of the world’s epicenters of COVID-19 cases. There’s an awful death toll in Italy and Spain with the numbers of dead going up…
Military police officers patrol at a market in Budapest, Hungary, March 31, 2020.
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(Milan) - The European Union (EU) should act immediately to prevent further deaths at sea, Human Rights Watch said. As many as 700 migrants and asylum seekers are feared dead in a single shipwreck in the Mediterranean north of Libya on April 19, 2015,…
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Restore Right of Domestic Workers to Change Employers

(London) – The House of Lords should amend the Modern Slavery Bill to restore the right for migrant domestic workers to change employers, Human Rights Watch and the United Kingdom charity Kalayaan said today. The bill is being considered in the House of…
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UK Government Should Abolish ‘Tied Visa’ to Protect Workers, Prevent Forced Labor

(London) – Migrant domestic workers accompanying their employers to the United Kingdom are being subjected to serious abuses including forced labor, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The UK government is doing far too little to protect…
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UK-Ethiopia Agreement on Deportations Puts Suspects at Risk

(London) - The UK government should not rely on unreliable "diplomatic assurances" against torture to deport national security suspects to Ethiopia, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to the UK government. In December 2008, the United Kingdom…
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Promises From Algeria and Jordan Unreliable in Preventing Abuse

(London, October 22, 2008) - The British government should immediately halt plans to deport foreign terrorism suspects to countries that offer unreliable promises not to torture them, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The 36-page…
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Follow UN Recommendations, and Reject Longer Pre-Charge Detention

(London, October 8, 2008) - The United Kingdom should heed calls in a critical UN report to drop proposals to detain terrorism suspects for 42 days without charge, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to the home and foreign secretaries. The…
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House of Lords Should Reject Harmful Provisions of Terrorism Bill

A draft terror law giving British authorities the power to detain terrorism suspects for up to six weeks without charge violates the fundamental right to liberty and risks undermining counterterrorism efforts, Human Rights Watch said in a briefing paper…
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Cites Torture by Jordanian and Libyan Authorities

A British appeals court has dealt a serious blow to the government’s plan to deport national security suspects in reliance on assurances of humane treatment and fair trial on return. In two judgments on appeals of decisions from the Special Immigration…
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NGOs Welcome New Policy on Interpreters, but Call for UK Action on Wider Crisis

The UK government’s decision to reconsider its refusal to grant special asylum arrangements for Iraqi interpreters serving with British forces in Iraq is welcome, but does not go far enough, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and the UK’s Refugee…
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US and UK Bear Special Duty to Aid Refugees

Iraq’s neighbors are closing off escape routes to Iraqi asylum seekers, just as the international community has begun to respond to the 2 million refugees from the war, Human Rights Watch said in a briefing paper released today. As high-level officials,…
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The European Parliament should condemn European complicity in the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) program of “extraordinary renditions” and secret detention of prisoners, Human Rights Watch said today. The report of the European Parliament’s…
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Report Stresses Further Need to Investigate Secret Detention and Rendition to Torture

A new report by the European Parliament’s Temporary Committee on illegal CIA activity in Europe is a powerful indictment of European governments’ complicity in CIA abuses, Human Rights Watch said today. “The report shows how European governments acted as…
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The British government is eager to present itself as a global opponent of torture, but its track record tells a different story, Human Rights Watch said in a briefing paper released today. The 45-page paper, “Dangerous Ambivalence: UK Policy on Torture…
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Former Liberian President Arrives in the Netherlands for War Crimes Trial

(New York) - With the transfer of Charles Taylor to The Hague for trial, the U.N.-backed war crimes court for Sierra Leone and its donors must ensure that the former Liberian president’s trial remains accessible to the people of West Africa, Human Rights…
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Council of Europe Rejects Minimum Standards for Diplomatic Assurances

A Council of Europe expert group has rightly decided not to develop guidelines for the acceptable use of diplomatic assurances to justify sending people to places where they are at risk of torture, Human Rights Watch said today. “We welcome this decision…
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Council of Europe Deadline Is Today; European Parliament to Begin Hearings

European governments must provide detailed information about their participation in or knowledge of the Central Intelligence Agency’s unlawful detention and transfer of terrorist suspects. Two European bodies are investigating the CIA’s activities in…
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Decision Affirms Global Ban on Torture

The unanimous ruling by Britain’s highest court that torture evidence can never be used in court proceedings is an important milestone, Human Rights Watch said today. “This is a real victory in the struggle against torture,” said Holly Cartner, Europe…
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Draft Antiterrorism Law Raises Serious Human Rights Concerns

The British government’s proposal to extend the period that terrorism suspects can be detained without charge will undermine the rule of law and human rights, Human Rights Watch said today. The proposal is one of several problematic measures contained in…
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Proposals Risk Complicity in Torture, Unfair Trials, and Criminalizing Expression

Counter-terrorism measures presented by Prime Minister Tony Blair last week, coupled with this week’s proposal for special anti-terrorism courts, are deeply worrying, said Human Rights Watch. Some of the measures under discussion appear to be in outright…