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Brunei’s Syariah Penal Code (2013) went into effect on April 3, 2019.[1] The new code poses grave threats to fundamental human rights and discriminates against the country’s most vulnerable groups, including children, women, and religious and sexual…
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A Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

Summary Racist and other hate violence is a problem in Germany—as it is in many European Union countries— with hundreds of violent attacks recorded by authorities and civil society groups each year. Germany has made progress in…
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Applying International Human Rights Standards to Drug Detention Centers

The widespread ill-treatment and abuse experienced by people who use illicit drugs has received increasing attention as a human rights issue.One area of particular concern is the violation of human rights in the course of— and sometimes even in the name…
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Amicus Curiae brief filed with the Supreme Court

Human Rights Watch and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers filed an amicus brief in the case of Ashcroft v. Al-Kidd before the Supreme Court. The case challenges the US government's misuse of the material witness statute to investigate…
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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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SummaryBackgroundAnalysis of the Draft Anti-Terrorism Legislation     Defining Terrorism     Infringement of Freedoms of Speech and Expression     Expansion of Police Powers without Due Process Guarantees         Powers of Arrest, Search, and Seizure…
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Legal guarantees     The absence of legal guarantees is one of the main causes of Saudi Arabia’s serious human rights problems. Without specific legal protections, neither the government nor judges, not to mention ordinary citizens, can…
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Supreme Court of the United States, January 6, 2006

The detention and military commission systems created by the Executive to hold and try persons seized in the “war on terror” and implemented at the United States Naval Station in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba (“Guantánamo”) violate the well-established norms of…
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List of Detainees Published by Human Rights Watch

The following is a list of persons believed to be in U.S. custody as "ghost detainees" -- detainees who are not given any legal rights or access to counsel, and who are likely not reported to or seen by the International Committee of the Red Cross. The…
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A Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

On June 17, 2005, Iran holds its ninth presidential election, as well as mid-term elections for the seventh parliament. As in all previous elections, candidates wishing to compete in these elections must first win approval by the powerful Guardian Council…
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The following is a compilation by Human Rights Watch of accounts by thirty-three former detainees at Guantanamo of their experiences there. Human Rights Watch interviewed sixteen of the detainees, reviewed press reports containing statements by former…
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Human Rights Watch has repeatedly tried to gain access to U.S. detention facilities in Iraq but U.S. military officials in Baghdad have denied requests for visitation rights. Human Rights Watch is able to have regular access to prisons and detention…
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One year after the adoption of the country strategy, it is clear that the benchmarks did not trigger the necessary reforms. This failure is attributable, first and foremost, to the Uzbek government's flagrant disregard for human rights and democracy, an…
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Since the mid-1990s, Armenian authorities have used administrative detention as a tool of repression, locking up protesters and activists at times of political tension. The 2003 presidential election and its aftermath mark the most sustained, extensive…
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A Human Rights Watch Backgrounder

According to the latest statistics from the U.S. Department of Justice, more than two million men and women are now behind bars in the United States. The country that holds itself out as the "land of freedom" incarcerates a higher percentage of its people…
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In a 16-page briefing paper, “The Iraqi Government Assault on the Marsh Arabs,” Human Rights Watch documents how systematic bombardment of villages, widespread arbitrary arrests, torture, “disappearances,” summary executions, and forced displacement have…