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States Should Oppose Forced Treatment, Detention; Ensure Non-Discrimination

In what may seem like a contradiction, the Council of Europe—the continent’s leading human rights body—continues to pursue a new legal instrument that would undermine the rights of people with disabilities. Today’s meeting of the Council of Europe’s…
The headquarters of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg
News

Protect Rights of Prisoners with Disabilities, Impose Death Penalty Moratorium

On September 21, the Pakistan Supreme Court directed a medical board to examine two death row prisoners with psychosocial disabilities, or mental health conditions, seeking expert opinion on mental health as a mitigating factor in capital punishment…
The Supreme court building is seen in Islamabad, Pakistan, July 17, 2017.
News

Enforce Decision, Protect Rights of People with Disabilities

A recent decision by Pakistan’s Supreme Court directs the federal and provincial governments to take steps to fully realize equal participation of people with disabilities. The court ruling was in response to a petition…
The Supreme court building is seen in Islamabad, Pakistan, July 17, 2017.
News

Hong Kong, Xinjiang Responses Should Top Agenda

(Brussels) – European Union leaders should use the forthcoming EU-China summit to press for an end to Beijing’s grave and systemic human rights violations, Human Rights Watch said today. The 22nd EU-China summit will be held virtually, because of the…
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and European Council President Charles Michel participate in a media conference after a meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the European Council building in Brussels, March 9, 2020.  
Video
A mobile team that supports people with psychosocial disabilities, or mental health conditions, in their own homes offers an innovative rights-based alternative to residential psychiatric care.
News

India, Pakistan Should Accept Findings, Ensure Justice

(New York) – India and Pakistan should act on the recommendations of the United Nations human rights office to protect basic rights in the contested region of Kashmir, Human Rights Watch said today. The 43-page report by the Office of the UN…
Relatives of disappeared persons participate in a silent protest, demanding an investigation into the disappearances of people in Kashmir.
News

Improve Support, Accommodation

(Brussels) – European Schools, a network of 13 intergovernmental schools primarily teaching children of European Union employees, do not do enough to accommodate the needs of children with disabilities, Human Rights Watch and the European…
A boy sitting at his desk in his room doing homework
Report
  Summary “My son knows every car brand. He has astonishing geographical memory. He knows two Mozart operas by heart. But special gifts like this are not regarded in schools, because they are not useful. If you are not among…
News

Protect Rights of Prisoners with Disabilities, Impose a Complete Moratorium on Death Sentence

This week, a medical board confirmed that Saleem Ahmad, a prisoner on death row for 14 years, has chronic schizophrenia. Ahmad, 50, had been scheduled to be executed in November 2017, but a court suspended his execution and…
Imdad Ali, who is aged around 50, was sentenced to death for the murder of a religious cleric in 2002 and is set to be hanged tomorrow.
News
On February 6, the European Commission will present its new strategy for the enlargement of the EU. People in the Western Balkans may greet the news with scepticism. But if the EU institutions and states are really willing to end the EU…
Roma refugees from Kosovo drink water at the Vrela Ribnicka camp in Podgorica, Montenegro on October 13, 2012
Video
Nujeen Mustafa is a Syrian disability activist, who spent some time living in Greece as a refugee. Basic services, such as toilets or running water, were not available to her and the many other refugees in the camp, and are still not available to date.…
News

Improve Monitoring of Refugee Assistance Funds

(Brussels) – The European Parliament should ensure that European Union funds for refugees also reach those with disabilities, Human Rights Watch and the European Disability Forum said in advance of an event at the European Parliament in Brussels tomorrow…
Lagkadika camp, Thessaloniki, home to 234 asylum seekers and other migrants, as of January 5, 2017. The rocky terrain in many camps makes it difficult for people who use wheelchairs to move independently, including to access basic services such as toilets
News

EU-Turkey Deal Traps People in Abuse and Denies Them Refuge

(Athens) – The EU-Turkey deal has trapped thousands of people in abysmal conditions on the Greek islands for the past year, while denying most access to asylum procedures and refugee protection, Human Rights Watch said today. This assessment of conditions…
Asylum seekers from Algeria at a refugee squat on Lesbos. People of certain nationalities presumptively considered “economic migrants,” such as Algerians, are treated as having manifestly unfounded claims, and are often detained on that basis.
News

Would Exacerbate Dire Conditions for Asylum Seekers

(Athens) – Plans to resume returns of asylum seekers to Greece put the rights of thousands of people at risk, Human Rights Watch said today. The move demonstrates once again the European Union’s failure to uphold its human rights obligations and share…
Families waiting for a bottle of water and a sandwich per person at a camp in Idomeni, Greece, March 2016.
News

Imdad Ali’s Execution Imminent

Does Imdad Ali, a 50-year-old Pakistani with schizophrenia, understand that he will be executed in the next few days? It’s hard to tell. The death penalty is inherently cruel – but even more so for those who may not recognize their crimes. Ali’s…
Imdad Ali, who is aged around 50, was sentenced to death for the murder of a religious cleric in 2002 and is set to be hanged tomorrow.
Report
Summary I have no hope of getting justice in this crooked system. —Umar Daraz, Karachi, January 2016 How do you expect us to recover stolen items from hardened criminals? Do you think they will agree if we say, ‘Be nice to us and return…
News

Imminent Execution Cruel, Would Not Serve Justice

Update 9/19: The Supreme Court of Pakistan has stayed the execution of Imdad Ali for one week, until September 27, 2016. (New York) – Pakistani authorities should halt the execution of Imdad Ali, which is scheduled for September 20, 2016,…