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Strong Political Declaration Needed to Reduce Civilian Harm

The Covid-19 pandemic has put the brakes on many things, including the negotiations to conclude a new political declaration on explosive weapons in populated areas. But states have continued such use, particularly with weapons with wide-area effects,…
Children in front of the Africa/Ayga hotel likely damaged by a direct fire weapon in Humera town, Tigray region, Ethiopia, on November 22, 2020.
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UN Inquiry Needed into Alleged Violations by Warring Parties

(Nairobi) – Ethiopian federal forces carried out apparently indiscriminate shelling of urban areas in the Tigray region in November 2020 in violation of the laws of war, Human Rights Watch said today. Artillery attacks at the start of the armed…
A woman stands in a metal sheet room that was damaged by shelling in Humera town, Tigray region, Ethiopia, on November 22, 2020. In that residential compound, two women and an elderly man were killed by shelling and gunfire, and two women were wounded.
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Repression of Civil Society Contravenes Organization’s Rules

(New York) – A major global initiative to encourage governments to better manage natural resource revenues should reject Ethiopia’s bid for membership due to its harsh restrictions on civil society, Human Rights Watch said today. The governing board of…
Report
Whose Development? Human Rights Abuses in Sierra Leone’s Mining Boom Map of Sierra Leone Summary Recommendations To the Government of Sierra Leone To the …
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Human Rights and the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative

Update: A response from the EITI Secretariat is available at this link. ContentsSummaryBackground: EITI’s Purpose, Structure, and RulesEITI’s Founding PrinciplesStructure of the InitiativeThe Central Role of Civil Society ParticipationCurrent…
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Testimony of Researcher Lisa Misol before the U.S. Congressional Human Rights Caucus

For over a decade, Human Rights Watch has monitored crisis and conflict in West Africa, documented human rights abuses, and pressed for action to stop the abuses. The conflict-ridden West African subregion is a sad showcase of the human rights and…
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Dear President Obasanjo, Human Rights Watch is writing to you as host of the forthcoming Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting to outline a number of issues which we believe Commonwealth leaders should address when they meet in Abuja next week. In…
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A diamond may be forever, but perhaps the diamond trade is not. The industry has been embarrassed by revelations about how some brutal rebel forces in Africa use gems to sustain their fighting. The United Nations has slapped diamond embargoes on rebel-…
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Security Council Must Bring War Criminals to Justice, Protect Civilians, and Enforce Arms and Diamond Embargo

In a letter to the members of the United Nations Security Council, Human Rights Watch today urged decisive action to bring war criminals in Sierra Leone to justice. The rights group also called for stepped up U.N. efforts to protect civilians, and strict…
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  Human Rights Watch sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright urging her to support the establishment of a criminal process to bring to justice gross abusers of human rights in Sierra Leone; to work to strengthen the United Nations…
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Human Rights Watch called today for a tightening of the United Nations arms embargo on Sierra Leonean rebels, and highlighted reports of weapons shipments to the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) rebels over the past year. In a briefing paper released…
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Weapons Transferred Illegally to Rebels in Sierra Leone, Angola

(New York) - The president of Burkina Faso should order an independent inquiry into serious charges that his country has facilitated illegal arms transfers to rebel forces in Sierra Leone and Angola, Human Rights Watch said today. A March 15 United…
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The Honorable Blaise Compaore President of the Republic of Burkina Faso Dear President Compaore: I am writing on behalf of the Arms Division of Human Rights Watch, an independent human rights monitoring group, to ask you urgently to investigate…