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Azimjon Askarov, a human rights defender from Kyrgyzstan, may have died in prison on Saturday after contracting pneumonia, but it really was the cruel human rights abuses that ultimately got him. Prison officials confirmed the cause of death…
Ethnic Uzbek journalist Azimzhan Askarov, who was arbitrarily arrested, tortured, convicted after an unfair trial and jailed for life looks through metal bars during hearings at the Bishkek regional court, Kyrgyzstan.
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Use September 7 Meeting to Address Arbitrary Detentions, Disappearances, Abductions

(Beirut) – The Astana working group on detentions and abductions in the Syrian conflict should take immediate steps to address the Syrian government’s arbitrary detentions, torture of detainees, and enforced disappearances, 11 human…
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, Russia's President Vladimir Putin, and Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lock hands during a group photo in Ankara, Turkey, Wednesday, April 4, 2018. © 2018 Tolga Bozoglu/Pool Photo via AP
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State Protection Required for Lawyer and Inmate who Exposed Torture in Yaroslavl Prison

That torture is rampant in many Russian prisons and detention facilities, with little consequences for perpetrators, is widely known among Russia’s human rights defenders, lawyers, and journalists. Last week the United Nation’s expert torture-monitoring…
Irina Biryukova, a lawyer with Public Verdict representing Evgeny Makarov, Moscow, 2018.
News

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.
News

Victims of Punitive Round-Ups Still in Danger

(New York) – Police in Chechnya rounded up, beat, and humiliated dozens of gay or bisexual men in an apparent effort to purge them from Chechen society, Human Rights Watch confirmed in a new report today. Russian federal authorities…
A victim of the purge telling his story in a safe house in central Russia in April 2017.
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End Torture; Respect Basic Freedoms

(Berlin) – Central Asia's political leaders should focus on urgently needed improvements to basic human rights protections for their populations, as they deal with leadership succession and internal politics, Human Rights Watch said today in releasing its…
2016-10-7-eca-kazakhstan-bokaev-protest
News

Activists, Groups Targeted, Persecuted by Authorities

(Berlin) – Central Asian governments ramped up pressure on nongovernmental groups and activists in 2015, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2016. The governments of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan arrested…
News

Investigation, Trial Provided No Justice

Update - July 22, 2016 On July 22, 2016, the Chui Regional Court in Bishkek upheld the acquittal verdict of four police officers charged in connection with the death in August 2011 of Usmanjon Kholmirzaev. To date, no one has been held…
News

Abe Should Make Human Rights a Core Part of His Trip

(Tokyo, October 22, 2015) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Central Asia trip is a key opportunity to raise concerns about the alarming state of human rights throughout the region and underscore the importance of reforms, Human Rights Watch said…
News
Overview of key human rights concerns in Central Asia October 2015 Kazakhstan Kazakhstan’s human rights record has seen an unequivocal and marked deterioration in the last five years, with the authorities launching an…
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A Russian military court has just sentenced a Ukrainian filmmaker from Crimea, Oleg Sentsov, to 20 years in jail for supposedly running a “terrorist organization.” His alleged accomplice, Crimean activist Olexander Kolchenko, received a 10-year term for…
Oleg Sentsov
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Congress, or at least parts of it, is getting restless with the White House approach to human rights abuses in Central Asia. A recent hearing by the House of Representatives’ Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission on the region’s terrible human rights record…