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The London summit this week could kick-start the revival of the stalled reform process in the region – but won’t if human rights and the rule of law stay off the agenda

  Western Balkan and European Union leaders meet in London this week for a summit that could be a chance to revive stalled reforms and focus attention on critical issues. Unfortunately, there is every chance it will turn out to be full of hot…
Migrants are seen in front of a dorm destroyed during Bosnian 1992-1995 war, in Bihac, Bosnia and Herzegovina May 11, 2018.
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Forced Repatriation, Inhumane Detention Adds Misery to Asylum Seekers

Once again, World Refugee Day has arrived with no improvement in Thailand’s abysmal treatment of refugees and asylum seekers. Despite having decades of experience hosting millions of refugees, Thailand still has no refugee law or…
A Thai navy vessel tows a boat with migrants away from Thailand, in waters near Koh Lipe island in southern Thailand May 16, 2015.
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Discriminatory Actions Causing Chaos, Crisis

(Brussels) – The chaos and violence unfolding on the Greece-Macedonia border are a direct result of discriminatory border closures and Austria’s unilateral cap on asylum seekers, Human Rights Watch said today. Thousands of asylum…
2016-2-eca-greece-migrants
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Blocked Access to Asylum; Beatings by Soldiers; Poor Conditions

(Brussels) – Nationality-based restrictions at the border between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia are preventing asylum seekers from reaching countries where they want to lodge protection claims. Human Rights…
Two young Iranian sisters at the Idomeni border crossing between Greece and Macedonia. The border crossing is closed to all except those from Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan who intend to seek asylum in Germany or Austria, stranding other asylum seekers and
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Detained Without Proper Safeguards

(Brussels) - The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia has resumed the practice of arbitrarily detaining migrants and asylum seekers. The detentions are ostensibly to secure their testimony as witnesses in criminal proceedings against people suspected of…
window in the male section
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Beaten, Insulted at Border and in Detention

(Brussels) – The Macedonian police have verbally and physically abused migrants and asylum seekers at the border and in detention, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Macedonia is a key transit country along the Western Balkans…
Gazi Baba
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The state of emergency President Nicolás Maduro declared days ago for the Venezuelan border area should have raised red flags internationally. But it didn’t, and credible allegations of human rights violations are on the rise. The emergency…
Venezuela deportations
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Effort to Gag Critic Andy Hall, Criminalize Supply Chain Investigations

(Bangkok) – Thai authorities should drop charges against a prominent migrant worker rights activist, Human Rights Watch said today. The charges violate the free expression rights of the activist, Andy Hall, and undermine his research into labor rights…
British rights activist Andy Hall arrives at the Phra Khanong Provincial Court in Bangkok, Thailand on October 29, 2014.
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Across the world, unprecedented numbers of asylum seekers and migrants are turning to boat smugglers and risking or losing their lives in the world's oceans. So far this year at least 1,800 people have drowned in the Mediterranean. Instead of mustering…
Gerry Simpson - Expert
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Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia Should Act Urgently to Save Lives

(Bangkok) – Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia should end their pushbacks of boats with Rohingya and Bangladeshi migrants and asylum seekers, and instead bring them ashore and provide desperately needed aid, Human Rights Watch said today. As…
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The American public became aware of tens of thousands of Central American children at the US-Mexico border after photos of kids jammed into overcrowded detention centers went viral. With fits and starts, the US has made some headway in moving most of…
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Does the National Council for Peace and Order's (NCPO) "return happiness" campaign hold a place for children who languish in Thailand's immigration detention centres? "How long will I stay?" five-year-old Rayyan asked. "Will I live the rest of my life…
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Give UN Refugee Agency Access to Asylum Seekers

(New York) – The Thai government should immediately halt its plan to deport 73 ethnic Rohingya back to Burma, Human Rights Watch said today. Thai authorities should allow the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the UN refugee agency,…
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  “If I looked nice, he hit me,” Ana L., a mother of five in Colombia, told me. Ana (not her real name) detailed years of abuse by her partner. He beat her when she was pregnant, and hit her head so hard that she suffered permanent vision damage. She…
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“If I looked nice, he hit me,” Ana L., a mother of five in Colombia, told me. Ana (not her real name) detailed years of abuse by her partner. He beat her when she was pregnant, and hit her head so hard that she suffered permanent vision damage. She sought…
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Thailand: Don’t Deport Pregnant Migrant Workers

(New York) – Thailand’s government should scrap the labor minister’s proposed regulation to deport migrant workers who become pregnant, Human Rights Watch said today. The proposal discriminates against women workers and would not advance the government of…
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Oral Statement at the 17th Session of the Human Rights Council - June 3rd, 2011

Mr. President, we would like to thank Jorge Bustamante, the outgoing Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, for his work, make a few observations on his final report, and raise serious concerns about human rights abuses against migrant…
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Protection of Migrants’ Rights in 2009

SummaryKey RecommendationsWomen Migrant Domestic WorkersMigrant Construction WorkersRight to HealthDiscriminatory Treatment of MigrantsTreatment of Migrants Crossing Borders2009 Human Rights Watch Reports on Migrants Summary Migrants drowning at sea…
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Deaths, Labor Exploitation, Violence, and Poor Treatment in Detention

(New York) - Many governments' policies toward migrants worldwide expose them to human rights abuses including labor exploitation, inadequate access to health care, and prolonged detention in poor, overcrowded conditions, Human Rights Watch said today in…