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The ostensible assault on LGBT+ rights in Hungary, Poland and Russia has a very big target—anyone who signs up to universal norms.

Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orbán, used the visit by the pope to Budapest last month to advance his populist agenda. He said he had been encouraged by his meeting with Frances to advance ‘family values’. Indeed, Orbán claimed to have…
An activist holding the EU flag during a protest in Warsaw against “LGBT ideology free zones”. ©2021 Attila Husejnow / SOPA Images/Sipa USA
News

Detention, Ill-Treatment of Poor, Gay, and Transgender People

(Nairobi) – Rwandan authorities rounded up and arbitrarily detained over a dozen gay and transgender people, sex workers, street children, and others in the months before a planned June 2021 high-profile international conference, Human Rights…
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson (left), then Foreign Secretary, and Paul Kagame (right), President of Rwanda, meet during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London, April 17, 2018.
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Investigate, Protect Rights Defenders, End Hateful Rhetoric

Update: Poland’s Ministry of the Interior responded to Human Rights Watch’s request for information and comment on our findings in a four-page letter dated April 8, 2021. The letter states that the government adheres to international law guaranteeing…
Protesters hold a banner of Strajk Kobiet (Women's Strike) during a protest in Warsaw on March 8,  International Women's Day, organized by the Women's Strike (Strajk Kobiet) against the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party and the decision of the Constitutional Court.
News

France and Other EU States Should Act Decisively to Protect Rights in the EU

“I will go to an ‘LGBT-free zone’ in Poland,’” said Clément Beaune, French Secretary of State for European Affairs, in a December interview in which he also publicly came out as a gay man. But when he asked to visit Kraśnik, authorities denied him…
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Failure to Address Complaint Against Police

  Update: On March 17, 2021, the Court of Appeal in Tunis ordered Rania Amdouni released. The appeals judge confirmed Amdouni’s conviction but suspended her six-month sentence, and increased the fine from 18 dinars ($6.5) to 218 dinars ($78…
Rania Amdouni, 26, at the office of the Tunisian Association of Democratic Women, on October 27, 2020.
News
For 30 days, beginning January 17, European Union commissioners received daily Twitter notifications linking to personal stories of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Poles who have been harmed  by the  so-called “LGBT Ideology…
People take part in a gay pride parade in Warsaw, Poland, Saturday, June 8, 2019.
News

UN Experts Should Investigate

(Beirut) – Tunisian security forces have repeatedly targeted protesters, including lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) activists at protests, Human Rights Watch said today. The targeting involved arbitrary arrests, physical…
Protesters gather in Habib Bourguiba Avenue in Tunis, Tunisia on February 6, 2021.
News

Police Violence Against LGBT People in Tunisia

On October 6, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) activists in Tunisia raised their voices and banners in the street, amid the hundreds of demonstrators who were peacefully protesting a draft law that would drastically limit criminal…
Saif Ayadi, LGBT rights activist at Damj Association, surrounded by protesters on October 6, 2020.
News

Authorities Should Release Margot Szutowicz in Line with Calls by European Parliament and Council of Europe

Warsaw police have arrested a nonbinary activist, Margot Szutowicz, who has been placed in pretrial detention, in the latest example of Polish authorities’ anti-LGBT actions. Forty-eight other people, from a crowd of LGBT rights supporters protesting…
Activist Malgorzata Szutowicz, center, known as Margot, before being arrested in Warsaw, Poland,
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Respect Freedom of Expression, Equality for Everyone

(Brussels) – Polish authorities should stop trying to silence activists who support lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people’s rights, and instead promote and protect the right to equality, Human Rights Watch said today. In recent weeks,…
The Mermaid of Warsaw statue is seen holding the LGBT rainbow flag and wearing a pink mask with the anarcha-queer symbol in Warsaw, Poland July 29, 2020 in this image taken from social media.
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Appeals Court Applies Law Criminalizing Same-Sex Activities

(Beirut) – A Tunisian appeals court on July 28, 2020 upheld the conviction of two men accused of sodomy but reduced their sentence to one year in prison, Human Rights Watch said today. This conviction contradicts the rights to privacy and…
Revolutionary graffiti adorns a wall of the Prime Minister's office in Tunis, January 22, 2011.
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Arbitrary Detention; Reported Attempt to Require Discredited Anal Exam

(Beirut) – A Tunisian court sentenced two men accused of sodomy to two years in prison on June 6, 2020, Human Rights Watch said today. The decision violates their rights to privacy and nondiscrimination under international law and Tunisia’s 2014…
© 2018 Human Rights Watch
News

Don’t Manipulate Pandemic to Endanger Women, Adolescents

UPDATE: On April 16, 2020, the Polish Parliament sent both the “Stop Abortion” bill and the “Stop Pedophilia” bill to committee for “further work.” This decision means neither bill has been rejected, but further consideration has been postponed…
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New Government Should Suspend Abusive Laws

(Tunis) – Tunisia’s new government, approved by Parliament on February 27, 2020, should make human rights a priority, Human Rights Watch said today. The government should protect fundamental rights in eight key areas: ending criminal…
A general view of the Assembly of the Representatives of the People in Tunis, Tunisia, May 2016.
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Lack of a Constitutional Court Hinders Rights

(Tunis) – Tunisia still faces numerous hurdles to protecting its human rights gains nine years after Tunisians ousted the authoritarian President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2020.    The…
A Tunisian woman walks past a graffiti that reads "Freedom is a daily practice" in Tunis April 26, 2011.
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Young People Need Access to Comprehensive Sex Education

Threatening sex educators with jail may seem extreme – but it seems Poland’s ruling Prawo i Sprawiedliwość (PiS) party is willing to go there to cement power by generating fear and misinformation. Fueling intolerance and…
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Police Action in Lublin Should Set Example for All Polish Authorities

Police in Lublin, Poland took action to protect participants in a pride march last Saturday from anti-LGBT protesters, who, according to a media report, tried to stop the march and attack the marchers with eggs. Such action should stand…
Thousands of people take part in the Equality March in Lublin city, Poland, September 28, 2019.
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Discriminatory Campaign Highlights Rising Political Homophobia

A court in Poland has ruled that a newspaper must stop including hateful “LGBT-Free Zone” stickers in its publications. The Warsaw District Court ordered Gazeta Polska, a government-aligned newspaper, to halt distribution of the…
"LGBT-free zone" stickers inside the weekly edition of the conservative Polish Gazeta Polska magazine
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Homophobia, Transphobia Dominate Government Policies

Update: On May 20, the Court of Appeal in Tunis ruled in favor of the LGBT rights group Shams, finding that the government did not have grounds to shut the organization down. (Tunis) – Tunisia should revise its laws and…
© 2018 Human Rights Watch