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Police abuse is a chronic human rights problem that Human Rights Watch has worked on for decades in Brazil. In the last five years, Brazilian police killed 22,000 people, most of them Black. We have documented extrajudicial executions and other…
Police officers patrol the Rocinha slum after violent clashes between drug gangs, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil September 29, 2017. The banner reads: "The Rocinha asks for peace."
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Bill Would Have Criminalized Wide Range of Peaceful Expression

In a win for online freedom in Iraq, in February the Iraqi parliament said it will stop pushing forward a cybercrimes draft law until after it is amended so that it protects rather than infringes upon free speech. As it stood, the law would have…
Woman holding up a sign in Arabic
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Accurate Data Key to Protecting the Forest Defenders

For the first time, Brazils’ Attorney General’s office has produced a report analyzing violence against Indigenous peoples, Afro-Brazilian rural communities, and other at-risk rural communities by people engaged in illegal logging, mining, and land…
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Those Arrested Have a Right to Speedy and Fair Trails

Several members of Iraq’s parliament and the province’s deputy governor visited prisons near Mosul, Iraq, calling what they found a “humanitarian catastrophe.” This happened two days after Human Rights Watch released research detailing…
Women’s cell at Tal Kayf prison, taken in April 2019 and shared confidentially with Human Rights Watch, shows extreme overcrowding at the prison.
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Brazilian officials proposed a new initiative that could improve prison conditions and reduce the sometimes years-long delays people face before seeing a judge. This change followed the release of a Human Rights Watch report on extreme overcrowding and…
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In October, 2011, the Obama administration said it would send 100 US military advisers to central Africa to help the region’s armies combat the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), a vicious Ugandan rebel group. Human Rights Watch has pressed the US government…
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On October 6, the British government announced that it will allow Iraqi interpreters and other key support staff to settle in the United Kingdom. Iraqis who worked for British forces are particularly vulnerable to being targeted by insurgents and militia…
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Following high-profile media reports about Iraqi interpreters whose lives are threatened because they worked for British forces, the British government announced on August 7 that it will review its policy of non-preferential treatment for Iraqi employees…
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On July 27 the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and UNICEF announced a $129 million joint appeal to provide education for Iraqi refugee children in Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, and Egypt. Jordan also announced that it will give all Iraqi…
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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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The US Army in January ordered the court-martial of Lieutenant Colonel Stephen Jordan, a key official allegedly implicated in detainee abuse at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. Jordan is the first military officer to be charged under the doctrine of command…
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In an important step toward justice for the victims of ethnic cleansing in Darfur, on February 27, International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo named Ahmed Haroun and Ali Kosheib, the first suspects accused of committing war crimes and…
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For the past two years, Human Rights Watch has advocated to block Sudan’s ascension to the African Union (AU) presidency. On January 29 Sudan withdrew its bid for the presidency, despite being slated to occupy the post after being passed over for it last…
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On February 22-23 the government of Norway and some three dozen other governments—as well as Human Rights Watch and other nongovernmental organizations—will launch a process aimed at developing an international treaty prohibiting the use of cluster…
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The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) announced on January 8 that it would double the amount of aid it will request in 2007 for Iraqi refugees and internally displaced persons. In November Human Rights Watch released a major report highlighting…
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Darfur Lawyer Defends Victims of Ethnic Oppression

Salih Mahmoud Osman, a lawyer who has defended and given free legal aid to hundreds of victims of human rights abuses in Darfur, Sudan for the past two decades will receive Human Rights Watch’s highest award on November 7. Osman, who is from the Darfur…
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African leaders attending the 53-nation African Union (A.U.) summit turned down Sudan's bid to lead the A.U. next year, announcing that Congo-Brazzaville will assume the leadership instead. Pressure to reject Sudan's bid came from leading human rights…
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Human Rights Watch played a key role in helping to stop the deportation of hundreds of Sudanese demonstrators who were violently removed from their Cairo encampment by Egyptian police. Approximately 3,000 Sudanese refugees and migrants lived in a…
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In a new report by Human Rights Watch, United States soldiers have for the first time come forward to describe torture and other abuse by the U.S. military in Iraq, and the failure of superior officers to stop it. Human Rights Watch's report has…