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Full Investigation Needed into Ignored Riot Warnings, Sexual Violence

(Kinshasa) – Democratic Republic of Congo authorities have made no apparent progress investigating the September 2020 prison riot at Kasapa Central Prison in Lubumbashi, Human Rights Watch said. For three days, inmates repeatedly raped several…
Kasapa Prison
News

At Least 739 Civilians Killed in Ituri, North Kivu Provinces Since May

(Kinshasa) – Attacks on civilians by armed groups have continued in two conflict-ridden provinces of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo since the government imposed martial law in May 2021, Human Rights Watch said. Various armed groups, some…
Congolese army soldiers and United Nations peacekeepers patrol the area of an attack near the town of Oicha, 30 kilometers from Beni, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, July 23, 2021.
News

Police Reform Urgently Needed to Prevent Future Violations

(Washington, DC) – Members of the Colombian National Police have committed egregious abuses against mostly peaceful demonstrators in protests that began in April 2021, Human Rights Watch said today. Colombia’s government should take urgent…
A member of ESMAD throws a tear gas grenade by hand at protesters on May 28, 2021 in Bogota, Colombia.
News

Vulnerable People Stripped of Services During Pandemic

Update 8/25/21: In a letter dated August 13, 2021, the Iraqi Embassy in Beirut responded to Human Rights Watch laying out the measures the government is taking to ensure that returns are not forced, and saying that it is providing food, shelter, and…
Government buses waiting to move families from one camp in Anbar governate to another during a previous wave of camp closures in December 2018.  © 2018 Belkis Wille/Human Rights Watch
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Extrajudicial Executions, Arbitrary Arrests, Torture in Anti-Guerrilla Operation

(Washington, DC) – Venezuelan security forces have committed egregious abuses against local residents during a weeks-long operation against armed groups on the border with Colombia, Human Rights Watch said today. Venezuelan security forces opened…
Venezuelans flee from security forces.
News

Crackdown on Media, Dissent, Protests

(Kinshasa) – President Felix Tshisekedi’s administration in the Democratic Republic of Congo has increasingly cracked down on the media and activist groups during its two years in office. Despite some initial steps to advance a human rights agenda,…
Police arrest protesters in Goma, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, during demonstrations opposing the newly appointed president of the electoral commission, July 8, 2020.
News

Push to Close Camps Ignores Residents’ Well-being

(Beirut) –The ongoing closures of Iraq’s displaced persons camps on short notice is forcing some residents into homelessness and poverty, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch has repeatedly said that the authorities should allow…
Government buses waiting to move families from one camp in Anbar governate to another during a previous wave of camp closures in December 2018.  © 2018 Belkis Wille/Human Rights Watch
News

Arrest Guidon and His Abusive Commanders; Investigate Army Backers

(Goma) – Congolese authorities have not arrested a rebel commander wanted for multiple crimes under a June 2019 warrant even as his forces have continued to carry out summary killings, rapes and sexual slavery, extortion, and forced recruitment of…
Congolese authorities have not arrested a rebel commander wanted for multiple crimes under a June 2019 warrant even as his forces have continued to carry out summary killings, rapes and sexual slavery, extortion, and forced recruitment of children.
News

Improve Wayuu’s Access to Food, Water, Health During Covid-19

(New York) – The Covid-19 pandemic and related lockdown are making it even harder for the Wayuu, an indigenous group in Colombia and Venezuela, to survive, Human Rights Watch and the Johns Hopkins Center for Humanitarian Health said in a joint report…
Children in the Laamana community, Uribia, La Guajira, some of whom are malnourished.
News

Armed Criminals Abducted at Least 170 People, Many Women, Since 2017

Criminal gangs have kidnapped for ransom at least 170 people near the Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo between April 2017 and March 2020. Small groups armed with guns and machetes have beaten, tortured, and murdered hostages,…
Criminal gangs have kidnapped for ransom at least 170 people near the Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo between April 2017 and March 2020.
News

Crackdown on Media, Dissent, Protests

(Kinshasa) – The administration of President Felix Tshisekedi in the Democratic Republic of Congo has taken a serious downturn in respect for human rights in 2020. Congolese authorities have cracked down on peaceful critics, journalists, and political…
Police officers clash with demonstrators in Kinshasa on July 9, 2020 in demonstrations over the appointment of the new president of the Electoral Commission.
News

Killings, Threats, and Social Control

(Washington, DC) – Armed groups in Colombia have committed killings and other abuses against civilians in an effort to enforce their own measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19, Human Rights Watch said today. Since the arrival of the novel…
National Liberation Army (ELN) guerrilla members line up in their camp on the banks of the San Juan River, Chocó state, Colombia, on November 21, 2017. 
News

Justice Needed for 55 Deaths in Kongo Central, Kinshasa

(Kinshasa) – Police in the Democratic Republic of Congo repeatedly used excessive lethal force against a separatist religious movement in April 2020, killing at least 55 people and wounding scores more. The government crackdown against the…
Police officers raid Ne Muanda Nsemi’s residence, where more than 200 BDK supporters had gathered, in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, on April 24, 2020.
News

Security Forces Shoot Demonstrators, Burn Tents

(Beirut) – Iraqi authorities ramped up violent tactics to quash ongoing protests across Baghdad and southern Iraq between January 25 and 27, 2020, Human Rights Watch said today. Security forces set fire to protesters’ tents, fired live…
Security forces fire tear gas at protesters in Baghdad, Iraq, on January 27, 2020.
News

Over 500 People Killed in Ethnic Attacks

(Kinshasa) – Authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo have not brought to justice those responsible for the massacres of ethnic Banunu in Yumbi territory one year ago. On December 16 and 17, 2018, hundreds of ethnic…
A burned house in Bongende village, Yumbi territory, on the banks of the Congo River, Democratic Republic of Congo, January 27, 2019.
News

Total Security Force Killings Since Protests Resumed at Over 100

(Beirut) – Security forces have fired teargas cartridges directly at protesters in Baghdad, Iraq on numerous occasions since protests resumed on October 25, 2019, killing at least 16, Human Rights Watch said today. The dead are among the…
Protesters in Tahrir Square arrange the tear gas canisters that security forces fired at them in Tahrir Square in different patriotic constellations.
News

Attacks on Fleeing Demonstrators, Ambulances, Media

(Beirut) – Iraqi security forces have used excessive and unnecessary lethal force in confronting at times rock-throwing protesters, killing at least 105 and wounding over 4,000 since October 1, 2019, Human Rights Watch said today…
Mourners carry the flag-draped coffin of a protester killed during a demonstration in Najaf, October 8, 2019.
News

Overturning Acquittals in Terrorism Cases

(Beirut) – A close study of appeals court decisions in terrorism-related cases in Iraq shows that judges in close to two dozen cases in an 18-month period appeared to ignore torture allegations or to rely on uncorroborated…
Presidency of the Federal Court of Cassation of Baghdad
News

Lift Unlawful Restrictions Blocking Thousands

(Beirut) – The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is preventing about 4,200 Sunni Arabs from returning home to 12 villages east of Mosul, Human Rights Watch said today. More than three years after the Hamdaniya district was retaken…
A destroyed home near Ashqala al-Sagheer village in Hamdaniya, July 2019. Hasansham camp is in the background.  © 2019 Belkis Wille/Human Rights Watch
News

Survivors to Testify in Killing of 38 Burundian Asylum Seekers

(Goma) – The trial of six Congolese security force personnel for the killing of 38 Burundians in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo in 2017 puts the Congolese justice system in the spotlight. Five soldiers and a police officer face…
The 39 Burundian asylum seekers killed in Kamanyola, Democratic Republic of Congo, in September 2017.