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One Year Anniversary of Wanchalearm Satsaksit’s Abduction

(New York) – The Cambodian authorities have failed to seriously investigate the enforced disappearance of the prominent Thai activist Wanchalearm Satsaksit in Phnom Penh one year ago, Human Rights Watch said today. During this time, Thailand’s…
Sitanun Satsaksit holds a portrait of her brother, Wanchalearm, who was forcibly disappeared while living in exile in Cambodia on June 4, 2020. 
News

Dominic Ongwen’s Status as Child Victim Factors into Punishment

The International Criminal Court (ICC) today imposed a 25-year-sentence on Dominic Ongwen, a former leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). The sentence marks an important milestone in the search for justice for victims of the grave international…
Dominic Ongwen at his confirmation of charges hearing in ICC courtroom I on 21 January 2016 © ICC-CPI.
News
Eighteen years ago, in February 2003, Human Rights Watch interviewed Angela P, who was 10 years old when the brutal armed group Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) kidnapped her in northern Uganda. At age 15,  she was forced to become a “wife” to an LRA…
Dominic Ongwen at his confirmation of charges hearing in ICC courtroom I on 21 January 2016 © ICC-CPI.
News

Dominic Ongwen Guilty of War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity

(The Hague) – The conviction of Dominic Ongwen on February 4, 2021 is a major step for justice for widespread atrocities committed by the brutal Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in northern Uganda, Human Rights Watch said today. The guilty verdict at the…
Dominic Ongwen at his confirmation of charges hearing in ICC courtroom I on 21 January 2016 © ICC-CPI.
News

Verdict in Dominic Ongwen Case Set for February 4

(The Hague) – The International Criminal Court’s trial of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) leader Dominic Ongwen, in which a verdict is due on February 4, 2021, has been a significant step toward justice for atrocities committed by the group in…
Dominic Ongwen, a Ugandan commander in the Lord’s Resistance Army, waits for the judge to arrive as he made his first appearance at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands, Monday, Jan. 26, 2015.
News
Who is Dominic Ongwen? What is the Lord’s Resistance Army? How did the ICC come to bring charges against Ongwen? What are the charges against Ongwen? How does Ongwen’s experience as a child soldier affect judicial proceedings against…
Dominic Ongwen, a Ugandan commander in the Lord’s Resistance Army, waits for the judge to arrive as he made his first appearance at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands, Monday, Jan. 26, 2015.
News

Dominic Ongwen, Kidnapped by the LRA at Age 10, to Face ICC Judgment

After a four-year trial, in February the International Criminal Court will deliver its judgment in the case of Dominic Ongwen, a senior commander of the brutal rebel group the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). He is charged with 70 counts of war crimes and…
Dominic Ongwen, a senior commander in the Lord's Resistance Army, sits in the court room of the International Court in The Hague, Netherlands
News

Disbanding Future Forward Party, Banning Leaders a Blow to Democracy

(Bangkok) – Thailand’s Constitutional Court dissolved the opposition Future Forward Party on February 21, 2020, on politically motivated allegations, seriously damaging the country’s return to genuine democratic rule, Human Rights Watch said today…
Future Forward Party leader Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit arrives for a press conference at the party's headquarters in Bangkok, Thailand, Monday, March 25, 2019.
News

Justice for ‘Billy’ Hindered by Cover-Up, Legal Loopholes

(New York) – Thai authorities should immediately conduct a credible investigation into the abduction and murder of a prominent ethnic Karen activist who was forcibly disappeared more than five years ago. At a news conference on September…
Billy Thai Presser 20170206
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Urgent Revamp Needed to Ensure Credibility, Independence

The resignation of two prominent human rights advocates from the National Human Rights Commission of Thailand (NHRCT) is an alarm bell signaling the need for a total revamp of the flawed and scandal-ridden agency. Commissioners Angkhana…
Jose L. Cuisia Jr., chairperson of Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation, presents the 2019 Ramon Magsaysay awardee Angkhana Neelapaijit from Thailand during an event in Manila, Philippines, Friday Aug. 2, 2019.
News

Nairobi Conference Commits to Greater Efforts to Fight Impunity, Defend Rights

Last week, the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region met in Nairobi, Kenya, to discuss “combating impunity and upholding human rights as key contributors to peace and security.” Representatives from the organization’s 12…
Jean Baptiste Nguondija, a resident of Ngbada, Central African Republic, by the grave of his 10 year-old daughter Nathana Poura. Nguondija has lost 5 children since the conflict began in 2013.
News

Military Prosecutor Drops Case Against 8 Soldiers

(New York) – Thai authorities have failed to punish policymakers, military commanders, and soldiers responsible for the deadly crackdown on “Red Shirt” protests in May 2010, Human Rights Watch said today. On May 4, 2019, the military prosecutor…
On August 30, 2017, Phayao Akhard wears the bloody nurses gown worn by her daughter, nurse Kamolkate “Kate” Akhard, when she was killed by Thai Special Forces soldiers while tending wounded persons at the front of Wat Pathum temple on May 19, 2010, to pro
News

Rights Champion Wrote Definitive Account of Rwandan Genocide

Ten years ago today, our beloved colleague Alison Des Forges died in the crash of Flight 3407 traveling from Newark to her home in Buffalo. Alison had recently been in Uganda to meet with her research team that, to my great fortune,…
News

No Laws on Enforced Disappearance Mean No Justice for Victims

Today, August 30, is the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances. Despite the Thai government’s countless promises, enforced disappearance – the heinous practice by which government officials take someone into custody…
Billy Thai Presser 20170206
News

Use of Martial Law Raises Fears of Mistreatment

(New York) – Thai authorities should release or charge with a credible offense an ethnic Malay Muslim human rights activist who has been detained in the deep south, Human Rights Watch said today. Authorities arrested Burhan Buraheng of the human rights…
Human rights activist Burhan Buraheng has been arbitrarily detained without charge in a military camp in Thailand’s Pattani province since August 1, 2018.
News

Policymakers, Soldiers Escape Accountability for Violence Against ‘Red Shirts’

Eight years ago my colleagues and I watched as the streets of Bangkok were covered with blood in one of Thailand’s most violent political confrontations. Yet there is still no justice for the at least 98 people killed and more than 2,000 injured…
On August 30, 2017, Phayao Akhard wears the bloody nurses gown worn by her daughter, nurse Kamolkate “Kate” Akhard, when she was killed by Thai Special Forces soldiers while tending wounded persons at the front of Wat Pathum temple on May 19, 2010.
News

Security Camera Footage Goes Missing

An inquest in Thailand into the death of a teenage ethnic Lahu activist ended today without an answer to a critical question: What happened to the missing security camera footage the army claims justified the shooting? Chaiyaphum…
Ethnic Lahu activist Chaiyaphum Pa-sae, 17, was shot dead by Thai soldiers during an anti-drug operation on March 17, 2017.
News

Sedition, Illegal Assembly Charges Stifle Free Speech, Peaceful Assembly

(New York) – Thai authorities should immediately drop criminal charges against 39 activists who peacefully protested military rule at a rally in Bangkok on January 27, 2018, Human Rights Watch said today. If convicted, seven activists…
Pro-democracy activists face sedition and illegal assembly charges for peacefully protesting against military rule in Thailand.