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Allegations of Torture, Unfair Trials, Misuse of Terrorism Law

(Berlin) – Russian military courts handed down guilty verdicts on February 5 and 10, 2020 in three separate, deeply flawed terrorism cases in which the defendants alleged incommunicado detention, torture, and other ill-treatment to…
Pictured (L) members of a left-wing group Set (Network) in court in Penza, Russia on Monday, Feb. 10, 2020, when the court convicted seven members on terrorism charges, sentencing them to prison terms ranging from six to 18 years. (R) Eduard Nizamov.
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(Berlin, July 12, 2019) – Russian authorities have brought unfounded terrorism charges against 24 Crimean Tatars, 20 of whom were arrested during heavily armed raids on their homes in the spring of this year, Human Rights Watch said today. Security…
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Use September 7 Meeting to Address Arbitrary Detentions, Disappearances, Abductions

(Beirut) – The Astana working group on detentions and abductions in the Syrian conflict should take immediate steps to address the Syrian government’s arbitrary detentions, torture of detainees, and enforced disappearances, 11 human…
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, Russia's President Vladimir Putin, and Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lock hands during a group photo in Ankara, Turkey, Wednesday, April 4, 2018. © 2018 Tolga Bozoglu/Pool Photo via AP
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Rushed Proceedings, Lack of Due Process, Disproportionate Sentences

  (Beirut) – Iraq’s judiciary should change its approach to dealing with detained foreign women and children who are accused of affiliation with the Islamic State (also known as ISIS), Human Rights Watch said…
Russian women, sentenced to life in prison on grounds of joining ISIS, sit with children in a hallway of Baghdad's Central Criminal Court, April 29, 2018. © 2018 Ammar Karim/AFP/Getty Images
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Investigate Suspects’ Abuse Claims, End Effort to Disbar Lawyer

UPDATE: On December 14, 2017, at around 7 a.m., police detained Akhral Azimov, the father of two St. Petersburg bombing suspects Akram and Abor Azimov, and took him to the Kuntsevsky district police station in Moscow. The reason for his…
Mourners place flowers at the Tekhnologichesky Institut subway station in St. Petersburg to commemorate victims of the April 3, 2017 suicide bombing on a subway train.
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Provide Safe Passage from Deir al-Zor

(Beirut) – A group of civilians is stranded in the last remaining pocket under Islamic State (also known as ISIS) control in the city of Deir al-Zor, Human Rights Watch said today. All parties to the conflict, including the Syrian-…
A road sign welcomes people to the town of Deir al-Zor in Syria, September 20, 2017. © 2017 Reuters
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Arbitrary Detentions; Separatism, Terrorism Charges

(Berlin) – Russian authorities in Crimea have intensified persecution of Crimean Tatars, under various pretexts and with the apparent goal of completely silencing dissent on the peninsula, Human Rights Watch said today. Crimean Tatars are a Muslim…
Law enforcement officials during a search in Bakhchysarai, Crimea on January 26, 2017
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Summary The mayor said, “All thieves must be killed.” He said it was an order. −Witness to the execution of Fulgence Rukundo on December 6, 2016 Rwandan security forces summarily executed at least…
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The Russian government’s response to a decade-long insurgency in Dagestan, a southern Russian republic, has been marked by serious human rights violations. Insurgents also have attacked civilians. The abuses are set against a background in…
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Edward Snowden’s Russian lawyer says his client wants to start learning Russian. Now that the American whistleblower has finally left Sheremetyevo airport for “temporary asylum” in Russia, he might find himselfiz ognya da v polymya – out of the frying pan…
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Statement on Meeting in Moscow

(Moscow) – After meeting with Edward Snowden on July 12, 2013, Human Rights Watch reiterated its call for his asylum claims to receive fair treatment. Tanya Lokshina, Russia program director at Human Rights Watch, met with the former United States…
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When I received an email late Thursday from one “Edward Snowden” I was naturally skeptical. The invitation, supposedly from one of the world’s most sought-after people, had a whiff of Cold War-era spy thriller to it. The note instructed me to go to the…
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The candidates may disagree on some human rights issues, but the next president will face challenges that transcend partisan lines. How might tomorrow's presidential election affect U.S. policy on human rights? The common wisdom is that unlike their sharp…
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Dagestan Bombing Repudiates Human Rights

(Moscow) – The fatal bombing that occurred in Makhachkala, the capital of Russia’s southern republic of Dagestan, on May 3, 2012, is an abominable crime for which there is no justification, Human Rights Watch said today. On the evening of May 3, two cars…
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Magomedkhan wanted to get married. He really did. He had identified a possible bride, but it was not his job to start the ball rolling! He asked his elder sister Zaira to visit the girl and tactfully establish whether she wanted to be married. Zaira…
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(New York) - Russia should ensure that the bombing at one of Moscow's international airports on the afternoon of January 24, 2011, is investigated in full accordance with international human rights standards and that those responsible are brought to…