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Bank’s Management a Key Obstacle

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank has refused to acknowledge its human rights obligations in its new policy framework, Human Rights Watch said today. The bank’s third, and most likely final, draft of its new environmental and social framework, published…
A detainee in a government-run drug detention center in Vietnam. The World Bank provided funding for various HIV-related services in Vietnamese drug detention centers through a project that concluded in 2012.
Report
Summary Climate change is here with us. We cannot stop it. The only way is to see how to work around it. -- Peter Ekai Lokoel, Deputy Governor Turkana, September 2014 Over the past century, the average annual temperature on earth has increased, the…
News

The bank should develop a strategy to end attacks on community members and activists and provide remedies to victims

In countries around the world, people who suffer harm because of development projects financed by the World Bank Group take grave risks to speak out and often face severe consequences. Yet the bank has taken few concrete steps to protect community members…
Members of the Boeung Kak community protest peacefully in Phnom Penh, May 2013.
News

Response to Inquiry Dismissive of Abuses

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank should fully address serious human rights issues raised by the bank’s internal investigation into a project in Ethiopia, Human Rights Watch said in a letter to the bank’s vice president for Africa. The bank’s response to…
News

The New Brics Bank is an Opportunity to Learn Lessons and Ensure Every Infrastructure Project Protects Human Rights

The emerging Brics economies – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – struck an agreement this month to establish a development bank with an initial capital of $100bn. The Brics want the bank to mobilise resources for infrastructure and…
News
When World Bank President Jim Kim was interviewed by CNN’s Richard Quest today, in the lead up to the World Bank and International Monetary Fund annual meetings in Washington, Quest asked President Kim how the World Bank can effectively work in countries…
News

Billions for Development, but Lack of Safeguards Undermines Benefits

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank has closed its eyes to risks to the human rights of the very people it seeks to benefit, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The bank lacks adequate checks to guard against funding human rights abuse. The…
News

Rigorously Apply Social Safeguards in Ethiopia

Update: The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved the recommendation of its Inspection Panel to investigate whether the bank has violated its policies in a project in Ethiopia on July 12, 2013. The project was linked to the Ethiopian…
News

Accepted under the "Addressing Inequalities" Global Thematic Consultation - Call for Proposals for Background Papers, 2012

Human Rights Watch is actively reporting on this topic and an updated version of this article can be found here: Breaking the Poverty Trap - Why Poverty and Inequality are Human Rights Issues To learn about Human Rights Watch’s continuing work on poverty…
News

Prevent and Address Adverse Human Rights Impacts of Bank Activities

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank should incorporate human rights in its revised policies as a key component of fulfilling its mission to eradicate poverty, Human Rights Watch and the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL) said today. A new…
News
“Soldiers came and asked me why I refused to be relocated,” a 20-year-old Ethiopian told me in September at a refugee camp in Kenya. “Ojod,” not his real name, was still visibly shaken from the horror he had left behind: “They started beating me until my…
News
Amid the tributes to Ethiopia’s recently departed prime minister was much twittering (and tweeting) about ‘stability’ and the ‘transition’, especially from Ethiopia’s foreign donors. There is considerable concern that without Meles Zenawi, the charismatic…
News

Decision Ignores Gibe III Dam’s Impact on Indigenous Peoples, Environmental Concerns

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank undermined the rights of indigenous peoples and the environment with its approval on July 12, 2012, of a US$684 million loan, Human Rights Watch, Friends of Lake Turkana, International Rivers, Survival International, and…
News
"The soldiers would say, 'Tell me about this sugarcane.' If we do not say something good, they beat us. They have truncheons, guns, and stun devices. They come every day." These are the words of a Mursi man, an indigenous pastoralist in southern Ethiopia…
News

Rigorously Apply Social, Environmental Safeguards in Ethiopia, Kenya

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank should ensure that the rights of indigenous peoples and the environment are rigorously protected before funding a power transmission line connecting Kenya to a controversial dam in Ethiopia, Human Rights Watch said in a…
News

Business, government and development agencies should combat discrimination, which can drive poverty and conflict

"They come every day … four or five cars usually – 20 to 60 soldiers. They say, 'We need this land for sugar, so you shouldn't be here' … We say, 'We don't want [sugar]', but that is not the right answer. They hit us or they take us to jail." These are…