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Police Reform Urgently Needed to Prevent Future Violations

(Washington, DC) – Members of the Colombian National Police have committed egregious abuses against mostly peaceful demonstrators in protests that began in April 2021, Human Rights Watch said today. Colombia’s government should take urgent…
A member of ESMAD throws a tear gas grenade by hand at protesters on May 28, 2021 in Bogota, Colombia.
Video
(Washington, DC, April 26, 2021) – Venezuelan security forces have committed egregious abuses against local residents during a weeks-long operation against armed groups on the border with Colombia, Human Rights Watch said today. Venezuelan security…
News

Ukraine Should Join The 34 Other European States That Have Ratified the Istanbul Convention

Violence against women and girls in Ukraine remains a serious problem. A 2019 study by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Ukraine found that two-thirds of women surveyed said they had “experienced psychological, physical or sexual…
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky looks on during a press conference in the garden of the Mariinsky Palace in Kyiv, May 22, 2020.
Report
Summary In the eastern Colombian province of Arauca and the neighboring Venezuelan state of Apure, non-state armed groups use violence to control peoples’ daily lives. They impose their own rules, and to enforce compliance they threaten civilians on…
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Armed groups have committed egregious abuses against Colombian and Venezuelan civilians as they fight for control in Catatumbo, northeastern Colombia, Human Rights Watch.  The report, “The War in Catatumbo: Abuses by Armed Groups Against…
News

Killings, Disappearances, Recruitment of Children as Soldiers Go Unpunished

(Bogotá) – Armed groups have committed egregious abuses against Colombian and Venezuelan civilians as they fight for control in Catatumbo, northeastern Colombia, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The 64-page report, “…
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News

Memorandum to Delegates of the 2018 Meeting of States Parties to the Convention on Conventional Weapons

Incendiary weapons are among the cruelest weapons used in contemporary armed conflict. These weapons, which produce heat and fire through the chemical reaction of a flammable substance, cause excruciating burns and destroy…
Des habitants tentent d'éteindre des incendies provoqués par une attaque à l'arme incendiaire dans l'ouest d'Idlib, Syrie, 30 juillet 2018.
News
I get out of bed at 5 a.m., just as the curfew is being lifted in Donetsk, the capital of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR) in eastern Ukraine. It’s pitch dark outside and I feel privileged — really and truly privileged — to be able to…
On the border of the "neutral zone", it can take hours to cross from separatist to government territory.
News

Improve Security, Facilities Along the Line of Contact, Facilitate Better Crossing for Civilians

(Kyiv) – Ukrainian civilians are exposed to risks to their health and safety – even grave danger – as they face endless waits when they need to go back and forth across the contact line between government-controlled areas of eastern Ukraine and the…
Civilians waiting at the Novotroitske crossing point in the government-controlled Donetsk region, December 21, 2016.
News

Laws of War Prohibit Use of Indiscriminate Weapons in Populated Areas

As fighting has flared up between government forces and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine over these past two days, we have spoken to people trapped on both sides of the line of contact. “Here we go again,” groans a friend in separatist-…
One of the many unguided Grad rockets photographed by Human Watch researchers in eastern Ukraine in 2014-2015
News

Impunity on Both Sides

(Kyiv) – Both sides in the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine have detained and abused people with complete impunity, Human Rights Watch said today at a joint press conference with Amnesty International in Kyiv. In a statement released in Kyiv jointly with…
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Human Rights Watch is a nonprofit, nongovernmental human rights organization made up of roughly 400 staff members around the globe. Its staff consists of human rights professionals including country experts, lawyers, journalists, and academics of diverse…
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Delivered by Steve Goose, Director

Thank you Madam President for giving us the floor a second time for a short statement. We want to express our appreciation for the cascade of interventions we have just heard on Ukraine. It was an extraordinary chorus of voices speaking as one…
News

Fighting and Torture Continue to Rack Eastern Ukraine

November was unseasonably warm this year in Donetsk, an eastern Ukrainian city under pro-Russian separatists’ control. As you walk down Pushkin Boulevard, watching golden leaves gently drop to the ground, stop by a fancy coffee wagon and inhale the autumn…
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News

Why It's Time to End Secret Detention in Ukraine

Kostyantyn Beskorovayny spent 15 months jailed secretly by the Ukrainian Security Services (SBU). An active member of the Communist party in the small eastern town of Kostyantynivka, he was no supporter of Ukraine’s government- but not a “separatist”…
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News

Civilians Detained, Abused on Both Sides of Conflict Line

(Kiev) – Both the Ukrainian government authorities and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine are holding civilians in prolonged, arbitrary, and sometimes secret detention and torturing them, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said in a…
© 2016 Human Rights Watch cover illustration with two men tied up
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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Office of the Prime Minister 80 Wellington Street Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2                                                                                                       July 9,…
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Protect Students, Schools by Joining Safe Schools Declaration

(Berlin) – Hostilities in eastern Ukraine have damaged or destroyed hundreds of schools, many of which were used by parties to the conflict for military purposes, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.  …
Cover imageA former student, 13, stands in a damaged school in Vuhlehirsk.
News

Hostilities Down, but Civilians Remain at Risk

(Berlin) – The armed conflict in Eastern Ukraine is taking a terrible toll on civilians, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2016. The September 2015 ceasefire has significantly reduced hostilities, during which violations of…