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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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Homeless Shelter Residents to Be Compensated After Arbitrary Detention

The High Court of Uganda awarded damages of UGX 5,000,000 (about US$1,340) to 20 homeless gay, bisexual, and transgender people who had been arbitrarily detained and held without access to their lawyers. Their arrests had occurred in response to…
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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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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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Background 1) The former Libyan government headed by Muammar Gaddafi controlled and repressed civil society and promised but failed to deliver much-needed human rights reforms. Under Gaddafi, Libya maintained harsh restrictions on rights to freedom of…
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Libya is finally set to begin collecting evidence of crimescommitted by militias from the town of Misrata and people from Tawergha during the 2011 uprising to oust Muammar Gaddafi. This may be a first, hopeful step towards justice – but much needs to be…
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Government Pledged to Not Use Mines and to Help Clear Mines

Last week in Libya, Human Rights Watch witnessed the destruction of nearly 100 Chinese-made antivehicle landmines – weapons that kill or maim civilians, often children, long after the fighting has stopped. Human Rights Watch discovered a year ago that…
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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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Making a difference in Malawi, Albania, Lithuania and Uganda

Human Rights Watch protects lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people who are subject to discrimination and violence—and sometimes even torture or execution—because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. We advocate for the principles…
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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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Outspoken Defender of Women Living With HIV/AIDS

Human Rights Watch will present Beatrice Were, national HIV/AIDS coordinator for ActionAID International, and a leading advocate for the rights of people living with HIV/AIDS in Uganda, with its highest honor, the Human Rights Watch Defender Award, on…
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On March 2, the Libyan government, following a direct request by Human Rights Watch, released 132 political prisoners, many of whom had been unfairly tried and detained for more than seven years. The prisoners were pardoned five weeks after Human Rights…
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Ahead of the release of a Human Rights Watch report on the arbitrary detention of women and girls in "social rehabilitation" facilities, the Libyan government in meetings with executive director Kenneth Roth promised to investigate these abuses. Aisha al…
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In its annual meeting, the U.N. Committee Against Torture relied heavily on testimony gathered by Human Rights Watch in forming its findings and recommendations on Uganda. In conjunction with the Uganda-based Foundation for Human Rights Initiative, Human…
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A Human Rights Watch report highlighting two multinational gold corporations for their connection to abuses by rebel groups in northeastern Congo has prompted one company to agree to halt the purchase of "tainted gold" and the other to investigate its…
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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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In late 2004, the Ugandan Human Rights Commission vindicated our March report, State of Pain: Torture in Uganda, by confirming the widespread torture of political opposition members by Ugandan security and intelligence forces. The Commission’s report…
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Ugandan Activist Reunited with Abducted Daughter

Angelina Atyam, a Ugandan activist honored by Human Rights Watch in 1997, was recently reunited with her daughter Charlotte, eight years after Charlotte was abducted by rebels in Northern Uganda. I am not the only mother to lose my daughter in Northern…
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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…