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Macron Should Address Rights Abuses in Gulf Region

This week, French President Emmanuel Macron will visit the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia and Qatar, with a large delegation of French ministers and major business executives. In the UAE, he will apparently be finalizing a weapons deal, when…
News

Paves Way for Equatoguineans to Regain Stolen Resources

(Paris) – France’s highest court, the Cour de Cassation, on July 28, 2021 upheld two lower courts’ convictions of Teodorin Nguema Obiang Mangue, the vice president of Equatorial Guinea and eldest son of the president, for embezzling and laundering…
Teodorin Nguema, Equatorial Guinea's vice president and son of President Teodoro Obiang.
News

National Assembly Vote Scheduled for March 2

(Paris) – France’s National Assembly should approve a bill to require the government to return assets looted by corrupt foreign officials to the people of the county where the money was stolen, Human Rights Watch said today. The bill is scheduled for…
The building that houses the French National Assembly, the lower house of France’s bicameral Parliament, June 22, 2014. 
News

Arms Sales to Rights-Abusing Countries Fuel Atrocities Against Civilians

Last week, the French government published its latest report on arms exports, documenting sales and transfers throughout 2019. After Qatar, the governments of Saudi Arabia and Egypt received the greatest amounts, accounting for €1.4 billion and €1.0…
French-made Leclerc tanks of the Saudi-led coalition are deployed on the outskirts of the Yemeni port city of Aden during a military operation, August 3, 2015.
News

Other Dangerous Crowd Control Weapons Remain in Use

This week, France’s Interior Minister Christophe Castaner announced that French police would stop using the controversial GLI-F4 tear gas grenade. This move is long overdue, but doesn’t address serious concerns about other weapons…
Protester picks up a tear gas grenade during a police charge on December 8, 2019 on the Champs Elysees, Paris.
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Failing Diplomatic Talks Show Need for a Different Path

(Geneva) – Almost three in every four people responding to a new poll in 10 European countries want their governments to work for an international treaty prohibiting lethal autonomous weapons systems, Human Rights Watch said today. At…
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New International Law Is Essential to Retain Human Control Over Use of Force

(New York) – France, Germany, and other nations that are committed to a rules-based international order should begin negotiations on a new international treaty to ban preemptively lethal autonomous weapons systems, also known as fully autonomous…
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17 Organizations Denounce Threats to Prosecute Journalists Investigating French Arms Sales

(Paris) – Seventeen humanitarian and human rights organizations denounced threats to press freedom after three French journalists were summoned by French intelligence services for investigating the presence of French weapons in the conflict in Yemen,…
People are seen near a bus destroyed by an airstrike that killed dozens of children, in a photograph taken on August 12, 2018 in Saada, Yemen.
News

Senate Should Pass Law Requiring Repatriation of Stolen Assets

A Paris criminal court recently convicted Equatorial Guinea’s vice president in absentia of laundering more than US$120 million of his country’s assets in France, and seized his ill-gotten gains. The case, initiated by two French…
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French Arms Sales to Coalition Raise Complicity Concerns

(Paris) – President Emmanuel Macron of France should raise serious concerns with Abu Dhabi’s crown prince regarding laws-of-war violations in Yemen, Human Rights Watch said today. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed al Nahyan of the United Arab…
Saudi-led coalition aircraft struck three apartment buildings in Faj Attan, a densely populated neighborhood in Sanaa, on August 25, 2017. Two of the buildings were completely destroyed and the third suffered extensive damage. Saudi-led coalition aircraft
News

Campaign to Stop Killer Robots Press Release

(Paris) – The French members of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots on November 7, 2018 published a report "Why France Must Oppose the Development of Killer Robots," which recalls the risks arising from the development of lethal…
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News

Appoint Strong Experts, Press All Parties to Cooperate

Bombing and shelling of civilians. Denial of access to food and medicine. Landmines and cluster bombs. Torture and abduction. Child soldiers. For more than two years, international, regional, and Yemeni human rights groups called on the…
Saudi-led coalition aircraft struck three apartment buildings in Sanaa on August 25, 2017, killing at least 16 civilians, including seven children, and wounding another 17, including eight children. After an international outcry, the coalition admitted to
News

Hollande Should Call for Release of Imprisoned Activists, Journalists

In Paris this week on an official visit, Azerbaijan’s autocratic President Ilham Aliyev has already scored one photo op. Anyone reading yesterday’s Azeri media could see dozens of photos of Aliyev posing with leaders of top French companies, including…
Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev (L) shakes hands with his French counterpart Francois Hollande as they visit a local French school under construction in Baku, May 11, 2014.
News

Companies Should Put Safeguards in Place to Protect Workers Abroad

Our lives are full of products produced in faraway countries, under conditions we don’t know – think of the vegetables you eat, the clothes you wear, or even the device you are reading this on. Human Rights Watch has documented serious abuses in the…
A 13-year-old boy works in artisanal and small-scale gold mining in Obuasi. He dropped out of school at the age of 12 and would like to continue his education.
News

Shun Rosoboronexport, Leading Weapons Supplier to Syria

(Paris) – France should reconsider allowing Rosoboronexport, Russia’s state-owned arms trading company, to participate in Euronaval, a major international arms show being held outside of Paris from October 17 to 21, 2016, human rights groups EuroMed…
FRANCE SYRIA statement photo Russia Rosoboronexport 15 Oct 2016
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A Leader in Rejecting Weapons So Deadly to Civilians

France has completed the destruction of its stockpile of 34,876 cluster munition rockets and artillery projectiles that contained 14.9 million explosive submunitions, meeting a key obligation of the international ban treaty. It has also strongly condemned…
A pile of shoes during the annual demonstration by NGO Humanity and Inclusion denouncing antipersonnel landmines and cluster munitions in Lyon on September 20, 2014.
News

Short-Changes Rights Obligations; Bad Model for Other Countries

(Paris) – Draft legislation authorizing sweeping powers of digital surveillance is inconsistent with France’s international human rights commitments, Human Rights Watch said today. The bill, which has already won approval of the National Assembly’s Law…
News

Governments Should Address Fully Autonomous Weapons

(New York) – All governments should support international talks to address the threat posed by fully autonomous robotic weapons, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch and the Harvard Law School International Human Rights Clinic on October 21,…
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Today, Facebook issued its first transparency report, surprising no one in saying that the US government has made more requests for user data than any other country. US surveillance practices are only one of the reasons the country leads the pack:…