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The killing of 33 inmates in the Brazilian state of Roraima is another sign that the country's prisons are disgracefully out of control. Many of the bodies were decapitated, a practice widely used by gangs to terrorize their enemies.
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A relative of a prisoner holds a local newspaper, which shows a headline about a deadly prison riot, in front of Anisio Jobim prison in Manaus, Brazil, on January 3, 2017.
News
The United States is providing early release this weekend for 6,000 inmates who have been serving federal sentences for non-violent drug crimes -- the biggest one-time release of inmates in US history. It's a sign of a tectonic shift occurring in the…
U.S. President Barack Obama and Brazil President Dilma Rousseff depart a joint news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC on June 30, 2015.
News
Pernambuco’s prisons have become a haven of private enterprise. Imagine, if you can, what it is like to be imprisoned there. For 2,000 reais (USD530), you could buy a place to sleep, a narrow wooden cubicle where you can throw a mattress and prop a fan.…
Makeshift “barracos,” or cubicles, inside Pavilion 7 at Presídio Juiz Antônio Luiz L. de Barros (PJALLB), in Recife.
News
(São Paulo) – The Brazilian state of Pernambuco has effectively turned over its vastly overcrowded prisons to hand-picked inmate “keyholders,” Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The Pernambuco prison system holds more than three times as…
Penitenciária Agro-Industrial São João
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(São Paulo) – The Constitution, Justice and Citizenship Commission in Brazil’s Senate should approve a bill that would introduce basic due process procedures to prevent arbitrary detention, Human Rights Watch said today. The measure can also reduce prison…
A judge holds a custody hearing for a detainee in São Paulo on May 11, 2015, with the participation of a prosecutor and a public defender.
News
(São Paulo) – A pilot program in northeastern Brazil is reducing the number of people sent to pretrial detention, a major factor in prison overcrowding and gang recruitment, Human Rights Watch said today. The program in Maranhão state promptly brings…
News
(Beirut) – Jordanian authorities should immediately charge or release five Al al-Bayt university students detained since March 12, 2013, after other students alleged they had desecrated a Quran and engaged in “devil worship” . The students, who deny the…
News
(Beirut) – Saudi authorities should immediately disclose the whereabouts and condition of the Jordanian activist Khaled al-Natour, and free him or charge him with a recognizable criminal offense. Saudi security forces detained al-Natour at King Khaled…
News
(New York) - A Jordanian prosecutor ordered the pre-trial detention of a woman accused of a minor offense despite her life-threatening infection with necrotizing fasciitis, also known as "flesh-eating" bacteria, Human Rights Watch said today. The…
News
On June 12, the UN Human Rights Council, consisting of 47 member states of the UN, concluded the first comprehensive human rights review of Jordan. The review produced 79 recommendations. (Jordan rejected 26 of them.)  Most of Jordan's human rights…
News
(London, October 22, 2008) - The British government should immediately halt plans to deport foreign terrorism suspects to countries that offer unreliable promises not to torture them, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The 36-page…
News
During a recent visit to the home of someone who had been detained by the Jordanian intelligence service in 2002, Joanne Mariner was given two very thin strips of paper covered with Arabic writing and marked with a thumbprint. The message's author was a…
News
"Why Jordan?" The question puzzled Abu Hamza al-Tabuki, a Saudi citizen who claims that US agents arrested him in Afghanistan in December 2001 and, after interrogating him in Pakistan, flew him in a private jet to Jordan. Al-Tabuki is one of more than a…
News
A British appeals court has dealt a serious blow to the government’s plan to deport national security suspects in reliance on assurances of humane treatment and fair trial on return. In two judgments on appeals of decisions from the Special Immigration…
News
Even as the UK was negotiating its assurances with Jordan, the United States was knowingly sending terrorism suspects to Jordan for purposes of interrogation under torture. The evidence of US complicity in the torture of terrorism suspects in Jordan also…
Report
Suspicious Sweeps The General Intelligence Department and Jordan's Rule
 of Law Problem I. Summary II. Recommendations To the
 Government of Jordan.. To the
 Jordanian parliament III. Background:
 The General Intelligence Department and…
News
The British government’s proposal to extend the period that terrorism suspects can be detained without charge will undermine the rule of law and human rights, Human Rights Watch said today. The proposal is one of several problematic measures contained in…
News
In the days after the bombings of 7 July, there were many reasons to feel proud to be a Londoner. Politicians responded with dignity to the terrible events. People of all faiths stood together in the knowledge that those who had commissioned these crimes…
News
Human Rights Watch and Liberty are deeply concerned about the British government’s stated intention to seek diplomatic assurances against torture in order to deport terrorism suspects to their home countries or to third countries where they would be at…