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RE: Challenges to Implementation of GCM Objectives #4, 10, 13, 15, 17, 21 in Cameroon, Mauritania, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, and Tanzania, December 2018 – June 2021

Contents: I. Introduction II. Human trafficking (Nigeria, Senegal) III. Migrant detention (Mauritania, South Africa) IV. Migrant returns (Cameroon, Mauritania, Tanzania) V. Discrimination, xenophobia, access to services and documentation (South…
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Environmental Groups Hope Case Will Force Government Action on Emissions

When you approach the town of Secunda in the coal-rich province of Mpumalanga in eastern South Africa, the toxic smell of air emanating from the cluster of coal-fired power stations hits you long-before before you see the town. I spent last week in…
Fence line communities near Duvha Power Station, Mpumalanga, South Africa. 
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(Johannesburg, September 17, 2020) – Xenophobic harassment and violence against African and Asian foreigners living in South Africa are routine and sometimes lethal, Human Rights Watch said in a report, video, and Witness article released today. Despite…
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On Human Rights Day, End Abuses Against Asylum Seekers

Today the world marks the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and South Africa commemorates Human Rights Day, in remembrance of the 1960 Sharpeville massacre, when apartheid police killed 69 people protesting…
A woman waves a South African flag as she attends Freedom Day celebrations in Kwa-Thema Township, near Johannesburg
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Re: Protecting Human Rights in Australia’s Foreign Policy

Dear Minister Payne, Congratulations on your reappointment as foreign minister. Human Rights Watch looks forward to working with you to make protection of human rights a strong pillar of Australia’s foreign policy. We attach a…
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Rise in Xenophobic Violence as Elections Near

(Johannesburg) – Authorities in South Africa should urgently investigate, and arrest and prosecute those responsible for a spate of violence against foreign nationals in Durban from March 25 to April 2, 2019, the South Africa-…
Hundreds of foreign nationals displaced by xenophobic attacks in Durban on March 27, 2019  take refuge near the Sydenham Police Station. © 2019 RAJESH JANTILAL/AFP/Getty Images.
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Crucial Step in South Africa’s Path to Justice and Equality

Today, South Africa launched its National Action Plan to combat xenophobia, racism, and discrimination, marking an important step towards addressing the widespread human rights abuses arising from xenophobic and gender-based violence and…
A South African flag waves above Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape
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Inquiry, Officers’ Arrests Positive First Steps

The Gambian authorities should thoroughly investigate the alleged excessive use of force by police causing the deaths of two anti-sand mining demonstrators on June 18, 2018, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International said today. The…
Gambian security officers at the Supreme Court in Banjul, December 5, 2016.
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With incidents of xenophobic violence more frequent these days, does South Africa’s ruling party really think refugee camps are the answer? It's hard to say exactly how many immigrants there are in South Africa; estimates range from 2-5 million, out of a…
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Like many white South Africans of the time, I grew up in a home with a domestic worker who washed the dishes, made our beds, ironed our clothes and cleaned up after us. Emily, whose surname I never knew, lived in the small servant’s quarters behind our…
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Liesl Gerntholtz says even though there are huge violations against some domestic workers, there has been progress. (SABC interview) Liesl Gerntholtz, the Director of the Women's Rights Division of Human Rights Watch, says one of the major problems…
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I met Nonkulelo* while interviewing women in the Eastern Cape about their experience of pregnancy and the public health system. She told me about her daughter, Fezeka*. A week after 20-year-old Fezeka had delivered a baby girl at a local health facility…
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South Africa's tourism website describes the country as the "land of good times and friendly people". Sadly, Araya Y, a pregnant Somali refugee living in Port Elizabeth, did not experience this side of the country. Instead, when she went to a government…
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Nomsa, a 20-year-old woman from Mthatha in the Eastern Cape, showed me a scar on her thigh. She said it came from a wound inflicted by a nurse at a community health centre in 2010. The nurse, Nomsa said, used a pair of scissors "to make me open my legs…
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Extend Moratorium on Deporting Zimbabweans

(Johannesburg) – The South African government should quickly open a new refugee reception center in Johannesburg, Human Rights Watch said today. The closing of the existing center on June 1, 2011, will make it even harder for asylum seekers to lodge…
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Global Fund Grant Recognises Importance of Regional Fight for Health

The South African health minister, Aaron Motsoaledi, took the stage recently in Vienna to address the nearly 20,000 attendees at the 2010 International AIDS Conference. His presence was a testament to the progress South Africa has recently made in…
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Protection of Migrants’ Rights in 2009

SummaryKey RecommendationsWomen Migrant Domestic WorkersMigrant Construction WorkersRight to HealthDiscriminatory Treatment of MigrantsTreatment of Migrants Crossing Borders2009 Human Rights Watch Reports on Migrants Summary Migrants drowning at sea…
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Deaths, Labor Exploitation, Violence, and Poor Treatment in Detention

(New York) - Many governments' policies toward migrants worldwide expose them to human rights abuses including labor exploitation, inadequate access to health care, and prolonged detention in poor, overcrowded conditions, Human Rights Watch said today in…
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Xenophobic Violence, Discrimination Imperil Immigrant Health

(Johannesburg) - South African health care professionals are endangering the health of the country's large foreign population by routinely denying health care and treatment to thousands of asylum seekers, refugees, and migrants, Human Rights Watch said in…