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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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Meaningful Consultations with People with Disabilities Needed For Future Law

Activists and disability groups recently scored a key victory in Mexico: A regressive draft mental health bill was put on hold before reaching the Senate for a vote. The bill was based on a coercive approach to treatment of people with psychosocial…
Reyna (izquierda) y César, ambos con discapacidad física, dijeron haber sobrevivido violencia por parte de sus familiares. Viven juntos en Monterrey, Nuevo León.
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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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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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In a major step forward for women’s reproductive rights, lawmakers in Mexico City voted on April 24 to legalize abortion in the first trimester, making Mexico City the only jurisdiction in Latin America, other than Cuba, where women can decide to…
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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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Honoree Secures Access to Legal Abortion for Rape Victims

Human Rights Watch will give its highest award to Verónica Cruz, a leading Mexican women’s rights advocate, on November 2. In Guanajuato, abortion has been legal in cases of rape for more than 30 years. Yet, in 2000, the state legislature attempted to…
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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 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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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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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…
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Following intense efforts by Human Rights Watch, Turkmen dissident Gulgeldi Annaniazov, who fled Turkmenistan in early September, narrowly escaped the near-certain imprisonment and torture that he would have faced had he…
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Along with two other leading human rights groups (AI & WOLA), Human Rights Watch issued a document refuting the State Department's certification that Colombia is in compliance with the human rights conditions of U.S.…
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General Jos?Francisco Gallardo was jailed in 1993 after writing an article calling for the creation of a military human rights ombudsman's office. A military tribunal convicted him on minor corruption charges and sentenced him to 28 years in prison--a…
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The Mexican justice system currently leaves the task of investigating and prosecuting army abuses to military authorities. Because of this arrangement, serious human rights violations go unpunished. On December 5, HRW released the report "Military…
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Together with other groups, Human Rights Watch successfully pressed for the release of Mexican environmental activists Rodolfo Montiel Flores and Teodoro Cabrera Garc韆. Montiel and Cabrera were jailed for drug and weapons crimes in 1999 after protesting…