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The ostensible assault on LGBT+ rights in Hungary, Poland and Russia has a very big target—anyone who signs up to universal norms.

Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orbán, used the visit by the pope to Budapest last month to advance his populist agenda. He said he had been encouraged by his meeting with Frances to advance ‘family values’. Indeed, Orbán claimed to have…
An activist holding the EU flag during a protest in Warsaw against “LGBT ideology free zones”. ©2021 Attila Husejnow / SOPA Images/Sipa USA
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Clarita Alia remains anguished, nearly 20 years after I first heard her express her grief. “His name was Danilo Lugay,” she told me over the phone recently from Davao City, in the southern Philippines. Police killed Lugay in September 2020 during a…
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Myanmar’s Coup Built on Years of Failed Accountability

On August 1, Myanmar’s commander-in-chief, Sr. Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, dressed in civilian clothes, made a televised speech six months to the day after leading a coup that thrust the country back under brutal military rule. Amid claims of establishing a…
Anti-coup protesters run from teargas deployed by the police during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar, March 1, 2021.
News

Lee Bo-reum found school almost intolerable. As a young woman, she was outed to her peers as a lesbian, and was ostracized and bullied by her classmates for her sexual orientation. As the mistreatment persisted, she eventually became depressed and…
News

Afghanistan is Emblematic of Crises the ICC Was Created to Address

The Taliban’s rapid takeover of Afghanistan has magnified concerns about an accelerating human rights crisis in the country. Already the world’s deadliest conflict since 2017, Afghanistan had seen a steady rise in attacks on civilians…
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During Pride month in June, LGBT rights once again became a flashpoint in Europe, where the rights of LGBT people have become a wedge issue, deployed for political effect. This simmering conflict is coming to a head between Hungary and Poland and the…
Demonstrators wrapped in LGBT and European Union flags are seen on August 30, 2020 in Warsaw, Poland. © 2020 Aleksander Kalka/NurPhoto via AP
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Russia, Nigeria, Uganda and Hungary have all passed odious laws in recent years that discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Ghana’s proposed legislation takes bad parts from all of these and adds some.

Sometimes the human capacity for cruelty takes my breath away. A recently proposed bill on “sexual rights” and “family values” in Ghana is a case study in extreme cruelty. Ghanaian MPs are considering legislation that is so onerous it beggars…
A young lesbian woman at an LGBT community center in Accra, Ghana.
News

Digital Targeting of LGBT People by Middle East/North Africa Governments

Sarah Hegazy, an Egyptian queer feminist, raised a rainbow flag at a concert in Cairo. Rania Amdouni, a Tunisian queer activist, protested deteriorating economic conditions and police brutality in Tunis. Mohamad al-Bokari, a Yemeni blogger in Saudi…
Sarah Hegazy, Egyptian LGBTQ activist, photographed by a friend who wished to remain anonymous, at a Mashrou’ Leila concert in Cairo in 2017 © 2020 anonymous.
News
When I met a former independent Lebanese parliament member, she asked me, “How can we mobilize the LGBT vote in Lebanon?” She wanted to understand why the Lebanese “LGBT community” had not voted as a block in the 2018 parliamentary elections to oppose…
LGBT activists in Beirut, Lebanon shout slogans and hold up a rainbow flag as they march to demand equal rights in a country gripped by economic and financial crisis, June 27, 2020.
News

An Interview with Pau González of Hombres Trans Panamá

I. Introduction On April 1, 2020, the government of Panama introduced a gender-based lockdown in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. This meant that women and men were only allowed to do essential shopping on alternate days. The country’s Health…
Pau González. © Alexandra Gil
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In just the past six months, more than 110 bills have been introduced in state legislatures attempting to roll back transgender rights, most of them targeting transgender youth. At the same time, legislative efforts to actively protect the…
Protesters gather outside the Supreme Court in Washington, DC on Oct. 8, 2019. 
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After more than two years combatting the Trump administration’s egregious attacks on the International Criminal Court (ICC), it is refreshing to contemplate a possible return to a constructive U.S. policy toward the Court. The American Society…
The International Criminal Court, or ICC, is seen in The Hague, Netherlands, November 7, 2019. 
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The Biden administration’s move to rescind former President Trump’s punitive sanctions against the International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor is a positive step, but it in no way resolves the difficult and complex relationship between…
Permanent premises of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, the Netherlands.
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On the campaign trail and during his first three months in office, President Biden promised a US return to a multilateral foreign policy that supports human rights. That is an important vision for the Middle East, a region often destabilized…
President Joe Biden speaks about foreign policy, at the State Department in Washington, February 4, 2021. 
News
You are nicknamed the ‘Dictator Hunter’ thanks to your past three decades of pursuing dictators for atrocities and seeking justice for their victims. Could you explain to us exactly how that works? ‘Dictator Hunter’ is a great calling-card, but it…
Reed Brody (2d from R) with some of Jammeh's victims in Banjul in May 2021.
News
  As some state lawmakers search for new battles in the culture war, they have introduced bills to exclude transgender children from playing sports with their classmates. Lawmakers in North Dakota should reject these cynical attempts – and…
Protesters gather outside the Supreme Court in Washington, DC on Oct. 8, 2019. 
News
Eighteen years ago, in February 2003, Human Rights Watch interviewed Angela P, who was 10 years old when the brutal armed group Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) kidnapped her in northern Uganda. At age 15,  she was forced to become a “wife” to an LRA…
Dominic Ongwen at his confirmation of charges hearing in ICC courtroom I on 21 January 2016 © ICC-CPI.