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Summary “Dao,” an ethnic Lao man in his 40s, previously lived a largely self-sufficient life in the village of Srekor in northeastern Cambodia’s Stung Treng province. He fished on the Sesan River and farmed rice and fruit on the fertile soil along…
News

Coerced Land Sales Linked to Predatory Lending

(Bangkok) – The World Bank Group should investigate alleged coerced land sales and other rights abuses linked to predatory lending and over-indebtedness in the micro-loan sector, Human Rights Watch said today. These longstanding problems have worsened…
Communities reiterate their calls for adequate housing rights and an end to land conflicts on World Habitat Day in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, October 5, 2015.
News
(Bangkok) – The recent Thai Ministry of Justice’s decision to grant a human rights award to a company currently facing trial for human rights abuses casts serious concerns on the government’s commitment to upholding human rights especially in the in the…
202010asia_thailand_FA-statement
News
21 July 2020 Your excellency, We, the undersigned 33 civil society organizations, urge the Governments of Australia, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, India, Japan, New Zealand, Sweden, the Netherlands, the Republic of Korea, the United Kingdom, and…
Communities reiterate their calls for adequate housing rights and an end to land conflicts on World Habitat Day in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, October 5, 2015.
News

Important Coastal Barrier at Risk from Increased Pollution

Cyclone Amphan, the most powerful to strike in the Bay of Bengal in 20 years, made landfall on the India-Bangladesh coast last month. Amphan ripped off roofs, washed away homes, and flooded farms. Crucially, Bangladesh was able to mitigate impact and…
Men working in a coal mine in Bangladesh
News
Amid protests against racism and police brutality in Minneapolis, Minnesota Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington likened police investigations of arrested protesters and their associates to contact tracing for COVID-19. This reckless analogy…
202005bhr_global_surveillance_covid19
News

Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Pakistan Should Allow Free Flow of Information

(Geneva) – The World Health Organization (WHO) should press four governments that have shut down the internet to minority populations during the Covid-19 crisis to restore internet access, Human Rights Watch and 47 other organizations…
202003bhr_coronavirus_kashmir_internet shutdowns
News

Companies Canceling Orders, Adding to Job Loss, Unpaid Wages

(London) – Apparel brands’ business practices in response to COVID-19 are exacerbating the economic plight of millions of garment workers in Asia, Human Rights Watch said today. Scores of clothing brands and retailers have canceled orders without…
202003wrd_garment_cambodia
News

Blocking Access Could Cost Lives

UPDATE: Ethiopia announced that it would restore phone and internet service to western Oromia after a three-month shutdown. (New York) – Intentionally shutting down or restricting access to the internet violates multiple…
202003bhr_coronavirus_kashmir_internet shutdowns
News

Hun Sen Responsible for Decision Because of Worsening Human Rights Situation

(Bangkok) – The European Commission on February 12, 2020, announced the partial suspension of Cambodia’s preferential trade preferences with the European Union after the government failed to address serious human rights concerns, Human…
Women in the sewing division of a factory in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
News
  In 2020, you should be watching for a growing trend of national legislatures requiring companies to live up to their responsibilities to workers, communities, and the environment. Millions of adults and children around the world suffer…
Children pan for gold
News

Time and Cost-Cutting Pressures Are Incentives for Labor Abuses

(London) – Clothing and footwear brands should end business practices that provide incentives for factory labor abuses, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The 66-page report, “‘Paying for a Bus Ticket and Expecting to…
201904WRD_apparel_presser
Report
  Summary Soon after the Rana Plaza collapsed in 2013 in the outskirts of Dhaka, Bangladesh, killing over a thousand workers, a top official from a global brand flew into Pakistan.[1] His sudden trip was sparked by the desperation to make up…
News
A crash in slow motion—it’s the only way one can describe the looming economic fallout should Bangladesh refuse to extend the Accord on Fire and Building Safety. In just one week’s time the Bangladesh government may force this landmark agreement to stop…
Bangladesh police stand guard in front of garment factories in Ashulia on December 26, 2016, when factories re-opened after a five-day shut down in response to garment workers’ wage strikes.
News
This spring marks a solemn milestone. More than five years have passed since a series of deadly fire and building accidents in Pakistan and Bangladesh together killed more than 1,500 workers and injured thousands more. In the aftermath of these…
Women work in the sewing division of a factory in Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital.
News

How Unions Help Workers Worldwide

How can a mango craving spiral into a labor dispute? I was talking with garment workers in Cambodia when I heard the mango story. A pregnant garment worker had been caught sneaking mangoes into the factory despite a rule forbidding food…
Garment workers take part in a May Day demonstration in Phnom Penh, Cambodia May 1, 2017.
News
Every year on April 24, I browse through a poignant online memorial for garment workers who died in 2013 in the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh. The website is a collection of national IDs, passport-size and other photos—a man posing…
News

Government Should Publish Reports on Factories it Inspects

A fire in Ideal Textile Mills in Bangladesh killed at least six workers this week, reportedly after sparks from welding set ablaze inflammable chemicals stored close by. Soon, the blame game will begin. Perhaps there’ll be a…
In September 2016, another factory burned in the same district. Here, firefighters stand at the site of a fire at a packaging factory outside Dhaka, Bangladesh, September 10, 2016.