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Authorities Should End Mistreatment of Prisoners, Allow Investigations

This week, apparently hacked videos of surveillance cameras in Iran’s Evin prison, in the capital Tehran, have confirmed many of the patterns of abusive treatment and violations of due process human rights groups have documented for decades. These…
In this undated frame grab taken from video shared with The Associated Press by a self-identified hacker group called "The Justice of Ali," a guard hits a prisoner, at Evin prison in Tehran, Iran. 
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Iran, Pakistan, Egypt, China, Myanmar Win Women’s Rights Posts

When the United Nations General Assembly held its annual election for seats on the Human Rights Council last October, five countries in the Asia regional group vied for four open seats, including two of the world’s most notorious rights abusers, Saudi…
U.N. headquarters Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019. (AP Photo/Jeenah Moon)
News

Arrests Focus Spotlight on Anti-Free Speech Laws

The arrests of three demonstrators in Singapore who were protesting the plight of transgender students highlights the extent of free speech restrictions in the city-state. Authorities arrested the trio on January 26 as they picketed outside…
201801wr_singapore_human_rights A woman wrapped in the rainbow flag is seen at the Pink Dot rally, Singapore's annual gay pride rally, at a park in Singapore July 1, 2017.
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Mandatory Order to Install Surveillance Software Infringes on Child Privacy, Expression

Singapore’s Education Ministry has made it mandatory for secondary school students to install tracking and remote access software on all laptops issued under a national digital literacy program, and on students’ personal devices that are used to…
A student uses a laptop for schoolwork while participating in remote learning, September 7, 2020.
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Halt Imminent Execution of Syed Suhail Bin Syed Zin; Abolish Death Penalty

The Singapore authorities should immediately halt the planned execution of Syed Suhail Bin Syed Zin this Friday, September 18 for drug trafficking offenses dating back to August 2011. Singapore’s High Court found Syed guilty of drug trafficking in…
People walk past the Supreme Court in Singapore January 22, 2014.
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Encouraging Signs They Are Set to Take More Leading Role

The Nordic countries proudly express steadfast commitment to human rights as a priority in foreign policy, but have been disappointingly inconsistent in practice. Sweden launched a feminist foreign policy in 2014 – a laudable approach that failed…
An Icelandic flag hangs outside a shop in Reykjavik, October 27, 2016.
News

Dual Nationals, Foreigners Used as Bargaining Chips

On June 30, an Iranian appeals court in Tehran upheld a five-year prison sentence against Fariba Adelkhah, an Iranian-French anthropologist at the Sciences Po university in Paris who has been detained for over a year. Adelkhah’s case is…
Message on the facade of the Strasbourg City Hall in France calling for the release of Fariba Adelkhah and Roland Marchal, two French scientists detained in Iran since June 2019.
News

Iranian Officials Should Cooperate in Impartial Investigation

Almost a month after reports emerged of the alleged drowning by Iranian border authorities of Afghan migrants attempting to cross the border into Iran, efforts to uncover the truth have achieved little. At a May 26 meeting in Kabul, Iranian and…
 Afghans return to Afghanistan at the Islam Qala border with Iran, in the western Herat Province, February 20, 2019.
News

Use of Capital Punishment Out of Step with Global Standards

Using Zoom video conferencing, a Singaporean judge on May 15 remotely sentenced a man to death by hanging. Punithan Genasan, 37, was found complicit in drug trafficking by coordinating 2 couriers to move 28.5 grams of heroin in 2011. Genasan denied…
People walk past the Supreme Court in Singapore January 22, 2014.
News

Successful Measures to Contain Coronavirus Require Public Trust

Iran is currently battling one of the fastest growing outbreaks of the coronavirus outside China – 4,747 confirmed cases and 124 deaths to date. Despite the high toll, many Iranians remain skeptical their government is being fully transparent…
A firefighter disinfects a traditional shopping center to help prevent the spread of the new coronavirus in northern Tehran, Iran.
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Amendment to Discriminatory Citizenship Law a Victory For Women’s Activism

After more than a decade of women’s rights activism, Iran’s Guardian Council has finally approved an amendment that would grant Iranian citizenship to the children of Iranian women married to foreign men. The Guardian Council was the…
Girl and women ride on a bus in Tehran © Reuters
News

Government Repression Keeps Many Families Apart

On Friday, media reported the US State Department had rejected the request of Iran’s Foreign Minister, Javad Zarif, to visit his country’s UN Ambassador, Majid Takht-Ravanchi, who is currently in hospital in the US for cancer treatment…
Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif during a press conference, September 2, 2019.
News

Sahar Faced Return to Jail for ‘Wearing Improper Hijab’ at Stadium

  Update: Sahar—also known as the “blue girl" for the color of her favorite team, Esteqlal of Tehran—died September 9 as a result of her injuries, Iran media reported In March, Sahar was arrested by…
Iran women FIVB
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Court Sentences Three Activists for Protesting Compulsory Hijab

Iran’s latest crackdown on women has taken place in the quiet of a courtroom. On July 31, a court in Tehran sentenced three women – including a mother and daughter – to prison for protesting laws that make wearing a hijab compulsory.…
201904mena_iran_women
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Detention of French-Iranian Anthropologist Confirms Worrying Trend

Iran’s judiciary has just confirmed the arrest of Fariba Adelkhah, a French-Iranian anthropologist, in Tehran. Media sources had earlier reported that the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) Intelligence Organization arrested Adelkhah, a researcher…
Portrait of Fariba Adelkhah
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Authorities Treat Experts as ‘Infiltrators,’ Deny Access to Lawyer

Two academics with ties to Australian universities are among those arrested or required to go to a police station to face questioning in Iran during a weeks-long crackdown. The Iranian authorities claim those arrested used scientific…
Iran's national flags are seen on a square in Tehran February 10, 2012.
News

Jailed Activist to Get Medical Care, Lawyer

Iranian officials, under international pressure and facing domestic unrest, have reacted by increasing  their pressures on activists. It is unclear  how many  are  behind bars, but Human Rights Watch has documented dozens of cases of people who have been…
Arash Sadeghi
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Five Executed in 2018 for Crimes Committed Before Age 18

Last week, Iranian authorities executed Zeinab Sakaavand for allegedly murdering her husband when she was 17. During her trial the court discounted Sakaavand’s claims that her husband frequently beat and abused her. She was only 15 when…
Iran's national flags are seen on a square in Tehran February 10, 2012.
News

Potential Graduate Students Barred Despite National Exam Scores

This time of year in Iran, graduate school applicants learn if they’ve been accepted into the programs they’ve strived for based on their national exam rank. But over the past decade, authorities have been quietly barring student…
University students cross a street during a snow storm in Tehran November 8, 2010. © 2010 Reuters/Caren Firouz
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This week, the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the United Nations’ Court, held hearings on a case Iran has brought against the United States. Iran is arguing that because the US withdrew from the nuclear agreement and is…
201808europe_internationaljustice_un_icj