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Encouraging Signs They Are Set to Take More Leading Role

Click to expand Image An Icelandic flag hangs outside a shop in…
An Icelandic flag hangs outside a shop in Reykjavik, October 27, 2016.
News

End Arbitrary Detention on Tourist Ferry Boats

Click to expand Image The Europa II, a tourist ferry sets sail from…
The Europa II, a tourist ferry sets sail from Marsamxett Harbour, Valletta, Malta.
News
Malta used to be known as a very conservative country, where social opinion, reflected in politics and policies, was heavily influenced by the Roman Catholic Church. Divorce was outlawed, abortion was—and remains— criminalized in all cases, and the law…
Boris Dittrich, Human Rights Watch LGBT Rights Advocacy Director, with Monsignor Scicluna, Archbishop of Malta, June 9, 2017.
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Other Council of Europe Countries Should Back LGBT Rights

As of March 1, Finland will allow same-sex couples to marry, bringing to thirteen the number of European countries with marriage equality laws.Nils Muiznieks, the Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights, in a statement on February 21, affirmed…
LGBT Rainbow Flag
News
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
News
Joanne Cassar got married in a small town in eastern Malta last night, capping a 9-year battle to win that right as a transgender woman in the deeply Catholic country. Today, Joanne and others in the Mediterranean nation had even more to celebrate as the…
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During a rally on Sunday, March 30, for Malta’s Freedom Day, which marks the country’s independence from British rule, Malta’s prime minister made a significant pledge: he committed to end the detention of migrant children. Malta — a key entrance point…
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Statement Delivered Under Item 6

Human Rights Watch welcomes the Universal Periodic Review of Malta which addressed a range of concerns, including immigration, rescue at sea, and detention of asylum seekers and children. Automatic Immigration Detention Without Adequate Safeguards Human…
News
Thanks to a ruling on December 13 from the European Court of Human Rights, thousands of migrants and asylum seekers arbitrarily detained in Malta each year may finally have a way to challenge their imprisonment. Growing numbers of migrants and asylum…