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Today, eleven undersigned organizations called on the Government of Singapore to withdraw the Foreign Interference (Countermeasures) Bill (‘FICA’). FICA’s provisions contravene international legal and human rights principles – including the rights to…
News

Broad Law Threatens Freedom of Expression, Association

(New York) – The Singapore government should withdraw a proposed law that significantly undermines the rights of activists, academics, journalists, and others to freedom of expression, association, and participation in public affairs and to…
Reporters record a speech by Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong as it is streamed on Facebook live during vote counting in the general election in Singapore, July 11, 2020.
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Journalists and Online Commentators Face Persecution for Critical Reporting

Celebrating World Press Freedom Day in Rwanda may well require journalists, activists, and diplomats to toe the line of the government’s ever-growing list of forbidden topics. In a country where the president coolly gives speeches gloating about the…
Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame speaks during the state funeral of Kenya’s former president, Daniel arap Moi, at Nyayo Stadium in Nairobi, Kenya, February 11, 2020.
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Jailing of Jolovan Wham Violates Right to Peaceful Assembly

(Bangkok) – Singapore authorities should immediately quash the conviction of the human rights activist Jolovan Wham in violation of his right to peaceful assembly, Human Rights Watch said today. On August 20, 2020, the Court of Appeal upheld the…
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Proposed Law Would Excessively Restrict Online Freedom of Speech

(New York) – Singapore’s proposed law on “online falsehoods” is sweepingly broad and threatens to stifle discussion on websites worldwide, Human Rights Watch said today. The government should withdraw the Protection from Online Falsehoods and…
Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong speaks during a press conference following the 33rd ASEAN summit in Singapore, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018.
News

Authorities Repress Critical Voices, Independent Media

(New York) – Singapore used broad laws in 2018 to intensify already severe restrictions on free speech and assembly, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2019. The government appears poised to introduce legislation on “deliberate…
Jolovan Wham participates in a silent protest with eight other activists on an MRT train in Singapore, June 3, 2017
News

Government Misuses Criminal Law to Prevent Criticism

(Bangkok) – Singapore authorities should drop criminal defamation charges against Terry Xu, editor of the online news site The Online Citizen, for publishing a letter alleging government corruption, Human Rights Watch said today. Xu is scheduled to…
A general view of the Parliament House in Singapore June 2, 2016.
News

‘Activism Is Not a Crime,’ Youth Leaders Say

Authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo arrested seven activists on Wednesday in the eastern city of Goma after a sit-in in front of MONUSCO, the UN peacekeeping mission in Congo. The activists read out a memorandum demanding…
Activists from the citizens’ movements Filimbi and LUCHA RDC Afrique peacefully protest on July 11, 2018 in Goma, in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, for the release of fellow activists detained in the capital Kinshasa since December 2017.
News

Reject Changes to Criminal Law (Temporary Provisions) Act

(Bangkok) – Singapore’s parliament should reject proposed revisions to the Criminal Law (Temporary Provisions) Act extending detention without trial and allow the law to lapse, Human Rights Watch said in a January 31, 2018 letter to…
The parliament house in Singapore, August 2016.
News

Rights Record on Free Expression, Assembly Worsens

(New York) – Singapore’s government imposed further restrictions on free speech and peaceful assembly while harassing and prosecuting critical voices in 2017, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2018. In the 643-page…
201801wr_singapore_human_rights A woman wrapped in the rainbow flag is seen at the Pink Dot rally, Singapore's annual gay pride rally, at a park in Singapore July 1, 2017.
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The Singapore government’s use of overly broad criminal laws, oppressive regulations, and civil lawsuits severely curtails freedom of speech and assembly, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.  The 133-page report, “‘Killing the…
Report
  Summary In Singapore, there is this culture of fear. Don’t speak up against the government or the government will “fix” you. —Leslie Chew, cartoonist, Singapore, October 2015 In Singapore, even if it is…
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Activist Jolovan Wham Faces Multiple Charges Under Draconian Laws

(Bangkok) – Singapore authorities should drop the case against activist Jolovan Wham for holding three public gatherings in the city-state, Human Rights Watch said today. Authorities are expected to charge Wham on November 29, 2017 with…
201711asia_singapore_jolovan Jolovan Wham participates in a silent protest with eight other activists on an MRT train in Singapore, June 3, 2017.
Report
Summary The mayor said, “All thieves must be killed.” He said it was an order. −Witness to the execution of Fulgence Rukundo on December 6, 2016 Rwandan security forces summarily executed at least…
News

Teen Still Detained Despite Grant of Asylum

(New York) – US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials should immediately release persecuted Singaporean activist and blogger Amos Yee, who was granted asylum by a US immigration judge on March 24, 2017, PEN America and Human Rights Watch…
US: Release Singaporean Blogger Amos Yee  PHOTO
News

Norway Deported Nkusi, Who Faces Prosecution in Rwanda

Joseph Nkusi is a Rwandan blogger who has sharply criticized Rwanda’s government, made false and inflammatory claims about the 1994 genocide, and founded a radical opposition group while living in exile in Norway. Next Monday, he is slated to go on trial…
A general view of Rwanda's capital Kigali, March 26, 2014.
News

Others Still Jailed After Protesting President’s Power Grab

The Democratic Republic of Congo’s Justice Minister Alexis Thambwe announced at a press conference on Friday that some of the country’s political prisoners would be released. He also said bans on two media outlets close to the opposition would be lifted…
Composite photo showing, clockwise from upper left, activists Fred Bauma, Yves Makwambala, Jean-Marie Kalonji, and Christopher Ngoyi.
News

Premier’s Visit is Chance to Address Censorship, LGBT Protections

(Washington, DC) – United States President Barack Obama should press visiting Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to address the Singapore government’s severe restrictions on fundamental freedoms, Human Rights Watch said today. President Obama will meet with…
Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and US President Barack Obama deliver remarks in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on November 22, 2015.