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Human Rights Watch Helped Keep International Attention on ‘House of Torture’

In early August, Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev announced that the notorious Jaslyk prison would be closed. Jaslyk’s planned closure offers hope that Uzbekistan is on the path to making serious improvements in its terrible…
Screenshot from a video showing a photo of a prisoner working at Uzbekistan's Jaslyk prison.
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On October 30, 2008, justice for victims of atrocities committed during the course of Liberia's long and brutal years of armed conflict took a major step forward in a very unlikely location: Miami, Florida. On that afternoon, an American jury issued its…
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On June 20, the special war crimes court for Sierra Leone handed down its first three convictions of members of a rebel group, the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council. In her sentencing statement, the judge noted that the three convicted were “responsible…
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Following intense advocacy by Human Rights Watch, Democratic leaders from the House of Representatives announced on June 29 that they would oppose a US-Colombia Free Trade Agreement (FTA) until Colombia shows evidence of sustained results in addressing…
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On May 14, the European Union for the first time called explicitly for the release of Uzbek human rights defenders who have been imprisoned since the 2005 massacre of civilians by government forces in Andijan. It also reaffirmed and extended its policy…
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Former Liberian President Charles Taylor was captured as he attempted to escape Nigeria on March 29, and he was transferred to the U.N.-backed war crimes court in Sierra Leone. Human Rights Watch played a leading role in pressing government and U.N.…
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In a landmark decision on October 3, the European Union agreed to sanction Uzbekistan over its refusal to allow an independent inquiry into the recent massacre in the city of Andijan. Human Rights Watch has steadfastly called on the international…
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On June 27, direct intervention by Human Rights Watch contributed to the United Nations airlift of 439 Uzbek refugees to safety. The refugees had fled to Kyrgyzstan from Uzbekistan, where a government massacre killed hundreds of people in the city of…
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In response to our reports, the United States is paying closer attention to human rights concerns in the process of paramilitary demobilization in Colombia. Our work helped to spark interest in the issue by the U.S. Congress, which led to an unprecedented…
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Briefing to the 60th Session of the UN Commission on Human Rights

Objective     The Commission on Human Rights should adopt a resolution condemning the Uzbek government’s appalling human rights record. The resolution should call on the Uzbek authorities to undertake a number of urgent steps required to bring the country…
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Briefing to the 60th Session of the UN Commission on Human Rights

Objective     The Commission on Human Rights should recommend the expansion of the United Nation’s human rights work in Colombia, including an increase in the number of permanent staff of the Office of the High Commissioner in Colombia, renegotiation of…
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In Colombia’s armed conflict, more than 11,000 child combatants fight for guerrilla and paramilitary groups, and account for one-fourth of the groups’ armed forces. The Colombian government took new steps toward ending the use of child combatants on…
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On January 27, foreign ministers of the fifteen E.U. member states and their Uzbek counterpart gathered in Brussels for the E.U.-Uzbekistan Cooperation Council, the single most important bilateral meeting of the year between the E.U. and Uzbekistan.…
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Human Rights Watch effectively urged the US Congress to continue to require the State Department to certify Colombia's compliance with human rights conditions twice annually (not the reduction to once proposed by Republicans in the House of…
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Following several years of intensive advocacy by Human Rights Watch and others, the Uzbek government finally agreed to extend an invitation to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture to visit the country. The visit, which took place from November…
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Human Rights Watch assisted several threatened human rights prosecutors in Colombia, one of whom became the first Colombian prosecutor involved with human rights cases to receive direct assistance from the United States to gain political asylum and…
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On November 8, in Bogota, Colombia, Human Rights Watch released "A Wrong Turn: The Record of the Colombian Attorney General's Office." The report documented how Colombia's Attorney General, Luis Camilo Osorio, has undermined or derailed key human rights…