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11 Asia-Pacific Governments Oppose 120 States on Capital Punishment Moratorium

(Bangkok) – Eleven countries from the Asia-Pacific region were among the small minority that voted against a United Nations resolution opposing the death penalty, Human Rights Watch said today. On November 17, 120 UN member states voted in favor of a…
A view of the United Nations General Assembly, at UN headquarters, October 1, 2018.
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Trip Covers Papua New Guinea, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar

(Tokyo) – Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi should forcefully raise human rights concerns on an upcoming regional trip, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to the foreign minister. Motegi will visit Papua New Guinea, Cambodia, Laos,…
Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi meets the media in Tokyo on May 28, 2020. 
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Japan Beverage Giant Pledges to Address Human Rights Concerns

(Tokyo) – Japan-based Kirin Holdings Company, Ltd. should end its partnership with Myanmar Economic Holdings Ltd. (MEHL) because of its connections to Myanmar’s abusive armed forces, Human Rights Now, Human Rights Watch, Japan Volunteer International…
Plastic crates containing Kirin brand beer at the Kirin Brewery Co. factory in Yokohama, Japan, June 2019. 
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  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
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Keisuke Honda to Coach Cambodia National Team Under Notorious General

(New York) – The international football star Keisuke Honda’s agreement to coach Cambodia’s national soccer team links him to a senior Cambodian official implicated in killings and alleged war crimes, Human Rights Watch said on December 3, 2018, in…
Former Japan football player Keisuke Honda walks on the pitch during his debut as coach of Cambodia's national football team at a friendly match against Malaysia, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, September 10, 2018.
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Item 3: Interactive Dialogue with Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity and Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions

We welcome the first report of the Independent Expert on SOGI-related violence and discrimination. We recognize that some States opposed creation of the mandate, but are encouraged that it was reaffirmed by the General Assembly with support from all UN…
Delegates arrive for the 34th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, February 27, 2017.
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28th session of the UPR

This submission highlights key areas of concern regarding Japan’s compliance with its international human rights obligations since its previous Universal Periodic Reviews (UPR) in 2012 and 2008: disability rights, discrimination and bullying based on…
A 20 year old Japanese woman who was bullied by her classmates in junior high school holds a notebook displaying the message...
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Seeking justice for the ongoing grave human rights abuses in Syria has proven largely elusive. Now the shield of impunity is beginning to crack. Several countries, including Sweden, Germany, and France are in the process of investigating some…
Syrian Man Carries Children After Barrel Bomb Attack
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Refugee Crisis and Universal Jurisdiction Cases in Europe

What’s the basis for European courts to try atrocities committed in Syria and Iraq? What is universal jurisdiction? Does universal jurisdiction mean that every country can investigate any grave international crime committed in Syria and Iraq? What…
Syrian Man Carries Children After Barrel Bomb Attack
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Re: Legal Recognition of Transgender People in Japan

Complaint submitted to: Juan MéndezUN Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment Dainius PūrasUN Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest…
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Accused of not being “girly enough,” she was frequently swarmed by students and beaten with a roll of paper. Her teachers witnessed the abuse again and again but did nothing. She begged her junior high classmates for help -- but they told her to endure…
A 20 year old Japanese woman who was bullied by her classmates in junior high school holds a notebook displaying the message...
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Urge Members of Human Rights Council to Establish Commission

(Tokyo) ­– The International Coalition to Stop Crimes against Humanity in North Korea (ICNK), consisting of over 40 leading human rights organizations and activists, today welcomes Japan’s strong position in favor of the establishment of a new United…
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UN Rights Council Should Take Action on Japan’s Call

(Tokyo) – Japan’s official decision to support the establishment of a new United Nations inquiry mechanism on human rights violations in North Korea is an important step toward the establishment of an in-depth investigation into human rights violations…
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UN Investigation Needed to Document “Systematic and Egregious” Rights Abuses

  (Geneva) – Members of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) should vote to establish a commission of inquiry into human rights abuses in North Korea when the matter comes up before the February-March session of the council, said Human Rights…
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Letter to Japanese Prime Minster Shinzo Abe

  Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Cabinet Secretariat, Government of Japan Re:  The Central Role of Japan in Addressing Human Rights Abuses in North Korea   Dear Prime MinisterAbe,  On behalf of Human Rights Watch, I wish to congratulate you on your recent…
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UN Values Under Threat

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), well known for deciding world heritages, is in the middle of a controversy surrounding a "dictator" prize. In 2008, UNESCO created an award called the UNESCO-Obiang Nguema…
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Burma’s Generals Are Sitting Pretty After One Year of the Bloody Crackdown

There's one country that we're pretty sure won't make it into any of the US presidential debates nor Japan's up-coming general election debates. Despite all the noise and widespread condemnation just one year ago during the regime's brutal crackdown,…
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UN Vote Upholds Council Membership Standards on Rights

(New York) – UN member states enforced the standards they established for the new Human Rights Council by not re-electing Sri Lanka to the body today. Domestic and international human rights advocates who had opposed Sri Lanka’s re-election to the council…
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States Avoid Serious Discussion of Rights in Algeria, Tunisia

(Geneva) – The first session of the new country review mechanism of the UN Human Rights Council was undermined by inconsistencies and the timidity of some governments in reviewing others, Human Rights Watch said today. On April 18, 2008 the council…