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Can Advance Economic Justice, Fix Broken Safety Net, But More Needed

(Washington, DC) – The Build Back Better Act would bring the United States closer to meeting international human rights standards and begin to repair a badly broken social safety net, Human Rights Watch said today. The Senate should strengthen…
Children and teachers complete a mural in celebration of the launch of the Child Tax Credit on July 14, 2021 at the KU Kids Deanwood Childcare Center in Washington, DC.
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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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Cities, Federal Agencies, Should Broaden Responses to Climate Change

(Washington, DC) – Many plans by local, state, and federal authorities in the United States to respond to heat extremes and climate change miss the threat that extreme heat poses to pregnancy, particularly for low-income and Black and brown people,…
A pregnant African-American woman sits on a bench in a black and white photo
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US, Afghan Forces Need to Visit Sites, Obtain Witness Accounts

(New York) – The United States and Afghan governments are not adequately investigating possibly unlawful airstrikes in Afghanistan, which may contribute to rising civilian casualties, Human Rights Watch said today. Recent…
An Afghan woman receives medical treatment after being injured during an airstrike in Herat province, Afghanistan, August 29, 2017.
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Detainee Rights, Indiscriminate Attacks, Treatment of Displaced People

(Beirut) – The United States-led coalition, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), and other local armed groups should make protecting civilians and respect for human rights a priority in the offensive to retake Raqqa from the Islamic…
Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) fighters on their way to Raqqa, Syria June 6, 2017© 2017 Reuters
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Mosul Civilians Describe Deadly Attack

(Erbil) – Procedural changes for authorizing airstrikes in Iraq raise concerns about the protection of civilians, especially following airstrikes in Mosul on March 17, 2017, that allegedly caused dozens of civilian deaths, Human Rights Watch said today.…
Relatives carry the bodies of civilians killed in an attack in New Mosul neighborhood of west Mosul on March 17, 2017. © 2017 Reuters
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Electric Chair Threats, Baton Beatings, Various Water Tortures

(New York) – Two Tunisians formerly held in secret United States Central Intelligence Agency custody have described previously unreported methods of torture that shed new light on the earliest days of the CIA program, Human Rights Watch…
CIA detainee torture abuse 2
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After the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States, the US government authorized the use of so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques” on terrorism suspects in US custody. For years US officials, pointing to Department of Justice memorandums…
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As a candidate, Barack Obama signaled his clear intention to break with the Bush administration's abusive counterterrorism policies. Once sworn in as president, Obama immediately issued executive orders that set a course toward reform. Human Rights…
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The interrogation techniques used by U.S. personnel on detainees at the naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba remain shrouded in mystery. While U.S. policy is that the detainees be treated “humanely,” the Department of Defense has never revealed publicly how…
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(Washington, DC) - Under President Bush's November 13th Military Order on military commissions, any foreign national designated by the President as a suspected terrorist or as aiding terrorists could potentially be detained, tried, convicted and even…
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