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Across the globe, people experiencing homelessness face serious risks—this was true before the Covid-19 pandemic. In many wealthy countries, homelessness has come to be seen as a fact of modern society. Some governments have claimed it can’t be…
Tents line a sidewalk on Golden Gate Avenue in San Francisco, Saturday, April 18, 2020.
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"We are coming back." This promise from Lebanese citizens flooded social media on April 17, the six-month anniversary of Lebanon's anti-government uprising. Just a couple of months ago, Lebanon's streets were buzzing with…
Lebanese protesters wave national flags during demonstrations to demand better living conditions on October 21, 2019 in downtown Beirut.
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Fears Hamper Self-Reporting for Coronavirus

Government responses to the spread of the COVID-19 virus have exposed the extra barriers to healthcare for refugees and migrants worldwide. But discriminating against already marginalized noncitizens not only erodes their capacity to…
Syrian refugees in a building under construction they have been using as a shelter in a city in southern Lebanon, on March 17, 2020, after Lebanon urged people to stay at home for two weeks to stem a novel coronavirus outbreak.
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Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people in Lebanon are accustomed to finding innovative strategies to cope with crises and combat state-sponsored repression, from navigating discrimination in employment to developing safe networks for…
LGBTQ Rights graffiti spray-painted at a protest site in downtown Beirut. December 22, 2019. © 2019 Marwan Tahtah for Human Rights Watch
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“It’s like there’s fog across the whole town,” said Othman, a resident of Kfar Zabad in the Bekaa Valley. “We’re coughing all the time, unable to breathe, sometimes we wake up and see ash in our spit.” Othman was describing…
Garbage is piled near a highway in Beirut, Lebanon January 19, 2016. © 2017 Reuters
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Lebanon’s waste crisis gained international recognition in 2015, when garbage overflowed in the streets of Beirut. But in fact, this is just the tip of the iceberg. My organization, Human Rights Watch, found that Lebanon’s mismanagement…
Open burning of waste in Majadel, south Lebanon.
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Lebanon is once again staring down a waste management crisis, with news that the Costa Brava and Bourj Hamoud landfills will reach capacity in 2018—two years before the government’s initial estimate of 2020. In response, the cabinet is reportedly…
Garbage is piled near a highway in Beirut, Lebanon January 19, 2016. © 2017 Reuters
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When Abid was five, immigration officials arrested him and his family, Pakistani refugees fleeing religious persecution. The officials took them to the squalid immigration detention centre in central Bangkok. There, they joined hundreds of other refugees…
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There have been repeated claims of UK complicity in the alleged torture of individuals detained abroad. The government’s latest move in the saga does not suggest a desire to get to the bottom of them. In July 2010, the British prime minister, David…
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Sectarianism in the Muslim world is dividing people who have lived together for centuries.

The last month hasn't been a good one for religious tolerance. As Egypt teetered on the edge of chaos following the military's ouster of Islamist President Mohamed Morsi, unknown assailants killed a Coptic Christian priest in Sinai and Muslim extremists…
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Lebanon is presented with the most serious challenges it has faced in the past decade. The economy is struggling, the internal security situation deteriorating and the country’s neighbors pose real threats. Yet amidst everything, there are opportunities…
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When I went to college, I chose a highly regarded university with a strong tradition as a Jesuit institution. I was pleased with my undergraduate education at Boston College, but I still lament that my alma mater denies students access to contraceptive…
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Last week's decision by the Special Tribunal for Lebanon to release Jamil al-Sayyed and three other high-ranking Lebanese security officials was a victory for the basic principle that no one should be detained for a lengthy period without charge. The…
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The plight of children in Kenya who fall prey to HIV/Aids

20-month-old Daniel is sitting on his grandmother’s lap in a small house in Nyangoma village, Western Kenya. His body is periodically shaken by a violent cough, and he looks tired and weak. Daniel (not his real name) is HIV-positive and suspected to…
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This Wednesday, unless the UK foreign secretary takes rapid action, Britain’s High Court will hold a hearing to assess whether the UK government should be ordered to hand over secret documents to lawyers for a Guantanamo detainee. The detainee in question…
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It is not just in the United States that aggressive counterterrorism measures have raised serious human rights concerns. This month, the UK House of Lords began debating a draft counterterrorism law that would institute a number of harmful proposals,…
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If there is any surprise inside governments or the UN over the Burmese military regime's obstruction of international aid efforts following the devastating Cyclone Nargis, then they haven't been watching the country closely enough. As UN aid agencies…
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Even as the UK was negotiating its assurances with Jordan, the United States was knowingly sending terrorism suspects to Jordan for purposes of interrogation under torture. The evidence of US complicity in the torture of terrorism suspects in Jordan also…
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Gordon Brown must beware Tony Blair's mistakes if he wants to beat the bombers

In his response to the attempted terrorist bombings in London and the attack in Glasgow, Gordon Brown may have revealed a change of approach to counterterrorism. There was no overreaction, despite the seriousness of the threat, and no rush to introduce…
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The Queen's Speech looks set to allow national security to be weighed against torture concerns

Torture is evil and unacceptable. Everybody, including even President Bush, agrees on that. But then comes a long list of buts. When it comes to America, the list is depressingly familiar - how to define torture; what the President can authorise; who can…