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Issue Passport to Author of Celebrated Prison Memoir

(Tunis) – Mauritanian authorities should issue a passport without delay to a former Guantanamo Bay detainee or explain the legal grounds for denying his right to travel, Human Rights Watch said today.    The United States…
Mohamedou Ould Slahi
News

Respond to Youth Demands, Gain Respect in the World

(Beirut) – Middle East and North Africa (MENA) governments can respond to the popular demands of the region’s youth for reform by implementing five changes in 2018 to arbitrary, outdated legal systems that infringe upon citizens’ rights and liberties,…
Demonstration outside Parliament on December 6, 2016, with women in white dresses and wrapped in bandages, calling for the repeal of article 522 of the penal code.
News
The killing of 33 inmates in the Brazilian state of Roraima is another sign that the country's prisons are disgracefully out of control. Many of the bodies were decapitated, a practice widely used by gangs to terrorize their enemies. …
A relative of a prisoner holds a local newspaper, which shows a headline about a deadly prison riot, in front of Anisio Jobim prison in Manaus, Brazil, on January 3, 2017.
News
The Republican candidate for president of the United States speaks and writes approvingly of so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques.” He is referring to a program run by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) that subjected people the US detained…
News
Last year, I entered a prison cell in Brazil seemingly designed to breed tuberculosis. Sixty men shared only six cement bunks. Most slept on the bare floor, some in a tangle of hammocks. The intense heat and humidity made the stench of sweat, feces, and…
2015AME_Brazil_Prisons_PHOTO
News

Endangers Freedom of Association

(São Paulo) – President Dilma Rousseff should veto a counterterrorism bill whose overbroad and vague language could be used to undermine freedom of association and expression in Brazil, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to the president. “…
Students demonstrate in front of Brazil´s National Congress in Brasilia to demand more investment in public education. June 27, 2013.
News

Vague Language Can Be Used to Stifle Dissent

A counterterrorism bill under consideration in Brazil contains overbroad and vague language that endangers basic human rights such as freedom of association and expression, Human Rights Watch said today. Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies should reject the bill…
Students demonstrate in front of Brazil´s National Congress in Brasilia to demand more investment in public education. June 27, 2013.
News
The United States is providing early release this weekend for 6,000 inmates who have been serving federal sentences for non-violent drug crimes -- the biggest one-time release of inmates in US history. It's a sign of a tectonic shift occurring in the…
U.S. President Barack Obama and Brazil President Dilma Rousseff depart a joint news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC on June 30, 2015.
News
Pernambuco’s prisons have become a haven of private enterprise. Imagine, if you can, what it is like to be imprisoned there. For 2,000 reais (USD530), you could buy a place to sleep, a narrow wooden cubicle where you can throw a mattress and prop a fan.…
Makeshift “barracos,” or cubicles, inside Pavilion 7 at Presídio Juiz Antônio Luiz L. de Barros (PJALLB), in Recife.
News

Among Brazil’s Overpacked Prisons, Pernambuco Tops the List

(São Paulo) – The Brazilian state of Pernambuco has effectively turned over its vastly overcrowded prisons to hand-picked inmate “keyholders,” Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The Pernambuco prison system holds more than three times as…
Penitenciária Agro-Industrial São João
News

“Custody Hearings” Improve Due Process, Reduce Prison Overcrowding

(São Paulo) – The Constitution, Justice and Citizenship Commission in Brazil’s Senate should approve a bill that would introduce basic due process procedures to prevent arbitrary detention, Human Rights Watch said today. The measure can also reduce prison…
A judge holds a custody hearing for a detainee in São Paulo on May 11, 2015, with the participation of a prosecutor and a public defender.
News

Custody Hearings Help Curb Overcrowding

(São Paulo) – A pilot program in northeastern Brazil is reducing the number of people sent to pretrial detention, a major factor in prison overcrowding and gang recruitment, Human Rights Watch said today. The program in Maranhão state promptly brings…
News
We, the undersigned organisations, call upon the 41 Governments that compose the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies, to take action and address the alarming proliferation of surveillance…
News

General Assembly Should Pass Strong Resolution on the Right to Privacy in the Digital Age

(New York) – The United Nations General Assembly should approve a new resolution and make clear that indiscriminate surveillance is never consistent with the right to privacy, five human rights organizations said in a November 20, 2013 letter to members…
News

Review of Counterterrorism Laws’ Search Powers Needed

(London) – The shocking detention of David Miranda, partner of Glenn Greenwald, a journalist at the Guardian, at London’s Heathrow airport on August 18, 2013, appears aimed at punishing or intimidating journalists, Human Rights Watch said today. The…
News

Statement on Meeting in Moscow

(Moscow) – After meeting with Edward Snowden on July 12, 2013, Human Rights Watch reiterated its call for his asylum claims to receive fair treatment. Tanya Lokshina, Russia program director at Human Rights Watch, met with the former United States…
News
When I received an email late Thursday from one “Edward Snowden” I was naturally skeptical. The invitation, supposedly from one of the world’s most sought-after people, had a whiff of Cold War-era spy thriller to it. The note instructed me to go to the…
News
(Washington, DC) – Edward Snowden’s disclosures about the massive surveillance of communications data by the United States and the United Kingdom point to a serious infringement on the right of privacy. If true, these disclosures indicate that data is…
News

Algeria Summit States Should Urge End to Murders, Kidnappings

(Dakar) - Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) has in recent months stepped up targeting tourists and aid workers for murder and kidnapping in Mali, Niger, and Mauritania, Human Rights Watch said today. AQIM should immediately and unconditionally free…
News
Across Brazil, patients are turning to courts to access prescribed drugs.  A comment published in The Lancet, co-authored by Joe Amon, Director of the Health and Human Rights Division at Human Rights Watch, addresses the judicialization of the right to…