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Improve Shelter Funding; Increase Access for Sex Workers, LGBT, Undocumented Survivors

(Johannesburg) – The South African government has taken important steps but did not provide adequate funding for shelters and other services for gender-based violence survivors during the Covid-19 pandemic. Many survivors have been made more…
General view during the Gender-Based Violence (GBV) protest march organized by the Office of The Premier in collaboration with Phepha Foundation on April 26, 2021 in Durban, South Africa.
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UN, World Bank, US Should Adjust Sanctions, Economic Policies

(New York) – Donor countries, the United Nations, and international financial institutions should urgently address Afghanistan’s collapsed economy and broken banking system to prevent widespread famine, Human Rights Watch said today. The UN World…
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Ensure Safety During Covid-19; Address Plight of Frontline Workers

(Nairobi) – The Kenyan government has failed to fulfill its pledge to support health workers fighting Covid-19, exposing them to avoidable risks of trauma, infection, and even death, Human Rights Watch said today. The government’s haphazard,…
Healthcare workers protest outside the Ministry of Health headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya to honor one of their colleagues, Dr. Stephen Mogusu, a 28-year-old health worker who succumbed to Covid-19.
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Rise in Poverty, Hunger Shows Need to Expand Social Protection

(Nairobi) – The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for African governments to strengthen social protection systems and fulfill people’s rights to social security and an adequate standard of living. Many African governments introduced…
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Failure to Protect Older People, People with Disabilities in British Columbia

(Ottawa) – Inadequate government support compounded risks for people with disabilities and older people during the recent extreme and foreseeable heatwave that killed hundreds of people in the Canadian province of British Columbia (BC), Human Rights…
A woman sits to take a rest as heat wave hits Western Canada on June 30, 2021 in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. © 2021 Mert Alper Dervis/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
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Women in City of Herat Describe Loss of Freedoms Overnight

(New York) – The Taliban in Afghanistan’s western city of Herat are committing widespread and serious human rights violations against women and girls, Human Rights Watch and the San Jose State University (SJSU) Human Rights Institute said today. Since…
A Taliban member watches as women demonstrate for human rights in Herat, Afghanistan, September 2, 2021. 
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Urgently Tackle Years-long Crisis in Harare

(Johannesburg) – Residents of Zimbabwe’s capital, Harare, face a potable water crisis three years after a deadly cholera outbreak, Human Rights Watch said today. Zimbabwe’s central government and the Harare City Council should urgently act to ensure…
A woman collects water at a borehole in Mabvuku, Harare in Zimbabwe, August 28, 2021.
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Full Investigation Needed into Ignored Riot Warnings, Sexual Violence

(Kinshasa) – Democratic Republic of Congo authorities have made no apparent progress investigating the September 2020 prison riot at Kasapa Central Prison in Lubumbashi, Human Rights Watch said. For three days, inmates repeatedly raped several…
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Vaccine Prohibitions, Poor Transparency Undermining Response

(Beirut) – Iranian authorities’ prohibition on procuring US- and UK-produced vaccines, lack of transparency, and mismanagement are exacerbating the already dire impact of the Covid-19 pandemic in Iran, Human Rights Watch said today. Iran is…
An Iranian man wearing a protective face mask looks on as people line-up to receive China's Sinopharm vaccine in central Tehran on July 19, 2021. 
News

Pregnancy Risks Left Out of Climate Change Planning

We have corrected the online version of this report to include an additional state government response on heat health action plans received by Human Rights Watch after the requested deadline but prior to publication. Germany has delayed…
A woman shields herself from the sun with an umbrella on a hot summer day in Cologne, Germany, July 25, 2019. 
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Enforced Disappearances, Incommunicado Detention, Groundless Deportation

(Beirut) – United Arab Emirates authorities have forcibly disappeared at least four Pakistani men since October 2020 and deported at least six others without explanation, apparently based solely on their religious background, Human Rights Watch said…
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Government, IOC, FIBA Should Investigate Players’ Allegations

(June 14, 2021) – Players from Mali’s Under-18 girls’ national basketball team have reported sexual abuse by the head coach, but the Mali Basketball Federation has failed to act on their reports, Human Rights Watch said today. Malian law enforcement…
Former President of the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Hamane Niang attends the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 official mascot launch ceremony on April 18, 2018 in Beijing, China.
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Stop Spreading Disinformation; Ensure Access to Testing, Health Care, Vaccines

(Beirut) – Houthi authorities in Yemen have suppressed information about the dangers and impact of Covid-19 and undermined international efforts to provide vaccines in areas under their control, Human Rights Watch said today. Since the start of the…
Medical workers attend to a Covid-19 patient in an intensive care unit at a hospital in Sanaa, Yemen, June 14, 2020. 
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Investigate, Protect Rights Defenders, End Hateful Rhetoric

Update: Poland’s Ministry of the Interior responded to Human Rights Watch’s request for information and comment on our findings in a four-page letter dated April 8, 2021. The letter states that the government adheres to international law guaranteeing…
Protesters hold a banner of Strajk Kobiet (Women's Strike) during a protest in Warsaw on March 8,  International Women's Day, organized by the Women's Strike (Strajk Kobiet) against the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party and the decision of the Constitutional Court.
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Anti-Corruption Measures a Step Forward, but Weak Implementation

(Washington, DC) –  The International Monetary Fund (IMF), despite overall progress in its anti-corruption efforts, has not ensured sufficient oversight of its Covid-19 emergency loans, Human Rights Watch and Transparency International said today…
International Monetary Fund (IMF) headquarters building is seen during the IMF/World Bank annual meetings in Washington, U.S., October 14, 2017.
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Unsanitary Conditions in Formosa; Isolation, Quarantine Centers; Free Speech Restrictions

(Washington, DC) – Authorities in Argentina’s northern province of Formosa have employed often abusive and unsanitary measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19, Human Rights Watch and the Johns Hopkins University’s centers for Public Health and…
People held in mandatory quarantine at School N°18, which served as a quarantine center, in the city of Formosa, on January 21, 2021.
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Pandemic Exposes Need for Improvements in Staffing, Oversight, Accountability

(New York) – Potential neglect and prolonged isolation may have caused serious harm to many people in nursing homes in the United States during the Covid-19 pandemic, Human Rights Watch said today.  Human Rights Watch interviews with more…
A nursing home resident holds his wife’s hand.
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Current System Leaves Needs Unmet; Lasting Reforms Needed

(Washington, DC) – The United States government has made little progress in stemming the rise in poverty and inequality during the Covid-19 pandemic, Human Rights Watch said today. The government should take urgent action to address the rights of…
Volunteers load food into the trunk of vehicles during a ''Let's Feed LA County'' drive-thru food distribution by the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank and the office of Supervisor Hilda Solis on February 23, 2021, in La Puente, California.
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Scores of Countries Target Media, Activists, Medics, Political Opponents

At least 83 governments worldwide have used the Covid-19 pandemic to justify violating the exercise of free speech and peaceful assembly, Human Rights Watch said today. Authorities have attacked, detained, prosecuted, and in some cases killed critics…
Police officers block a road in Russia’s capital