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Killings, Disappearances, Recruitment of Children as Soldiers Go Unpunished

(Bogotá) – Armed groups have committed egregious abuses against Colombian and Venezuelan civilians as they fight for control in Catatumbo, northeastern Colombia, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The 64-page report, “…
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Dire Conditions for Thousands Fleeing Fighting

(Beirut) – Jordanian and Israeli authorities should allow Syrians fleeing fighting in Daraa governorate to claim asylum and protect them, Human Rights Watch said today. On June 16, 2018, the Syrian-Russian military alliance opened an…
An Internally displaced girl from Daraa province carries a stuffed toy and holds the hand of child near the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights in Quneitra, Syria June 29, 2018. © 2018 Reuters/Alaa Al-Faqir
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UN Should Immediately Deploy Monitors to Prevent Reprisal Executions

(Beirut) – With Russia’s continued support, the Syrian government is using unlawful tactics in its assault on Eastern Ghouta, including what appears to be the use of internationally banned weapons, Human Rights Watch said today. There…
People walk with their belongings as they flee the rebel-held town of Hammouriyeh, in the village of Beit Sawa, eastern Ghouta, Syria March 15, 2018. REUTERS/Omar Sanadiki
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Syrians Under Siege, Airstrikes as Leaders Gather in Sochi

(Beirut) – Russia, Turkey, and Iran should make protecting civilians a priority when they meet in Sochi, Russia on November 22, 2017, Human Rights Watch said today. Recent airstrikes by the Russian-Syrian joint military operation that…
The Atarib public market after the strike
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Risk of Torture, Ill-Treatment

  UPDATE: On August 4, the European Court of Human Rights issued a preliminary injunction ordering Russia not to deport Khodoberdi Nurmatov to Uzbekistan, until the court can review his case.   (Moscow) – An Uzbek…
Ali Feruz at Basmanny district court in Moscow waiting for his hearing in the evening of August 1, 2017.
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Calls for Safe Zones Raise Concerns

(Beirut) – Human Rights Watch today released a question-and-answer document on “safe zones” and the armed conflict in Syria. A number of leaders and governments have suggested that creating safe zones in Syria near the Turkish or other borders could…
An internally displaced Syrian woman walks in the Bab Al-Salam refugee camp, near the Syrian-Turkish border, northern Aleppo province, Syria, December 26, 2016.
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UN Security Council Vote Expected

(New York) – Russia and other United Nations Security Council members should support a proposed resolution that would impose sanctions on Syrian government officials responsible for chemical attacks, Human Rights Watch said today. The Security Council is…
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Russia, a Participant in the Abuse, Should Not Veto

(New York) – The United Nations Security Council should demand that Syrian and Russian forces immediately halt unlawful attacks in eastern Aleppo and ensure that aid workers can safely deliver humanitarian assistance to hundreds of thousands of people…
An empty room at a damaged field hospital is seen after airstrikes in a rebel held area in Aleppo, October 1.
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Warring Parties Should Prioritize Protecting Civilians

(New York) – An attack on a United Nations aid convoy and on a Red Crescent warehouse in Aleppo should be investigated as possible war crimes. The apparent airstrikes on September 19, 2016, hit the convoy and building for over three hours with no military…
Damaged medical supplies after an airstrike on Urm al-Kubra town, western Aleppo city, Syria September 20, 2016
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I started working to help refugees in 1975 after watching TV images of Vietnamese refugees hanging from the landing skids of helicopters that took off from the roof of the US Embassy in Saigon. As an American, I was acutely aware these refugees…
US Secretary of State Kerry, Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov, and UN Envoy for Syria de Mistura address the media in Vienna.
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Aid, Resettlement, Asylum Procedures Fall Woefully Short

UPDATE: This press release has been updated to reflect the most recent funding figures from both Oxfam International and OCHA for the Russian Federation. (Washington, DC) – Russia’s contribution to meeting the needs of refugees displaced by the…
Syrian refugees line up to receive aid for the winter from the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) in Tripoli, northern Lebanon.
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UN Should Build Case to Prosecute

(New York) – Syrian and Russian military attacks on hospitals in recent weeks during the government air campaign in the Aleppo region are causing deaths and injuries and shutting down medical facilities. The United Nations Security Council should ask the…
Men and civil defence members look for survivors after an airstrike on a hospital in the town of Meles, western Idlib city in opposition armed forces-held Idlib province, Syria on August 6, 2016.
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Fast-Track Returns Put Refugees at Risk

(Moscow) – Norway should stop using fast-track procedures to return asylum seekers to Russia based on the presumption that it is a safe country of asylum for them, Human Rights Watch said today. Russian and Norwegian authorities plan to meet on February 3…
Refugees and migrants gather near a checkpoint on the Russian-Norwegian border in Murmansk region, Russia on October 30, 2015.
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Residents Say No Military Target Near Where 17 Died

(New York) – Apparent Russian airstrikes on Talbiseh in northern Homs that killed at least 17 civilians should be investigated for possible violations of the laws of war. Two local media activists and two first responders said that the September 30, 2015…
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Don’t Extradite Refugee to Country Where he Risks Unfair Trial

January 9, 2014 Update On January 9, 2014, a court in Aix-en-Provence, France approved extradition requests filed by both Russia and Ukraine for the former BTA bank chairman and opposition figure Mukhtar Ablyazov. The court said Russia should take…
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End Mass Sweeps, Arbitrary Detention Ahead of Olympic Games

(Moscow) – Russian authorities in Sochi have rounded up hundreds of migrant workers for alleged violations of migration or employment regulations. Many have been held in arbitrary and inhuman detention conditions. The detentions of migrant workers,…
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Displaced People Trying to Return Home Suffer Threats, Attacks

(Bogotá) – Internally displaced Colombians face killings and widespread death threats for attempting to reclaim their land, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Abuses targeting displaced families for trying to return home almost always go…
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Rogge’s Failure to Uphold Olympic Charter Led to Preventable Rights Crises in Beijing, Sochi

(New York) – The election of Thomas Bach as the new International Olympic Committee (IOC) president should open a new day in the enforcement of human rights principles enshrined in the Olympic Charter. Bach succeeds Jacques Rogge, whose 12-year tenure as…
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Presidential Candidates Need to Take a Stand Against Abuses

(New York) – The next president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) should ensure that future host countries comply with human rights in full accordance with the Olympic Charter, Human Rights Watch and the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ)…
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Racial Profiling, Arbitrary Detention, Harsh Detention Conditions

(Moscow) – Moscow police have detained thousands of suspected irregular migrants since late July 2013, for alleged violation of migration and employment regulations. Hundreds are in custody, including in a makeshift tent camp in inhuman conditions. Russia…