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Role of Military Doctor in State Torture at Issue

(Berlin) – Judges in Frankfurt, Germany will begin hearing evidence on January 19, 2022 in a trial involving allegations of torture and murder by state agents during Syria’s decade-long brutal armed conflict, Human Rights Watch said today. The start…
Entrance of the Frankfurt Higher Regional Court.
News

Risk of Illegal Racial Profiling and Other Abuses

(Athens) – Greece is planning a new police program to scan people’s faces and fingerprints that is inconsistent with international human rights standards on privacy and likely to amplify ongoing discrimination, Human Rights Watch and Homo Digitalis…
Police officers check the documents and permissions of people in the streets of Athens, Greece, March 23, 2020. 
News
(New York) - Human Rights Watch together with the Electronic Frontier Foundation and 125 non-governmental organizations and academics sent the following letter, urging Members of the United Nations Ad Hoc Committee on Cybercrime to ensure that its…
UN Headquarters
News

Translation Could Engage More Syrians in European Justice Process

This past two years, a landmark criminal trial was held in Koblenz, Germany. It was the first-ever trial held in Europe where alleged Syrian government agents were charged with crimes against humanity committed during Syria’s decade-long conflict.…
Illustration of a court proceeding
News

Former Syrian Intelligence Officer Found Guilty

(Berlin) – The conviction of a former Syrian intelligence officer for crimes against humanity by a German court is a ground-breaking step toward justice for serious crimes in Syria, Human Rights Watch said today. The judgment is a meaningful…
Photos of Syrians who have been detained or disappeared set up by Families for Freedom, as part of a protest in front of the court in Koblenz, July 2, 2020. 
News

Response to Covid-19 Chaotic and Inadequate, While Impunity Undermines Rule of Law

(New York) – Inadequate and unequal access to health care in Nepal was exacerbated during 2021 by government failures to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2022. The government’s failures led…
News

Punishment of Dissent; Impunity

(Beirut) – Iranian intelligence and judicial authorities continued their crackdown on dissent in 2021, while lawmakers passed and debated laws that further violate human rights, Human Rights Watch said in its World Report 2022. Over the past three…
Iranians gather during a protest after their province's river dried up due to drought and diversion, in the central city of Isfahan, on November 19, 2021.
News

Social Media Platforms Should Not Yield to Pressure

The final days of 2021 were marked by a particularly vicious escalation of Russia’s crackdown on independent reporting and activism. Amid a flurry of new “foreign agent” designations, arrests of political activists, and appalling court rulings…
An iPhone screen shows the Telegram account of OVD-Info
News

More Ambitious Agenda, Stronger Safeguards Needed

(Brussels) – The European Union’s draft rules to regulate internet platforms have the potential to better protect human rights online, Human Rights Watch said today. But the European Parliament should be more ambitious in holding technology companies…
EU Digital Regulation
News

Watershed Moment for Syrian Torture Survivors

(Berlin) – A verdict by a court in Germany in a watershed case for torture survivors and international justice is expected in January 2022, Human Rights Watch said today. The trial, involving charges of crimes against humanity against an alleged…
A view of a courtroom from the back
News

Questions and Answers about the trial in Koblenz, Germany

Who are Anwar R. and Eyad A.? What are the charges against the two defendants? Are the charges against the defendants representative of crimes committed in Syria? How did allegations against Anwar R. and Eyad A. specifically come to the…
A view of a courtroom from the back
News

Blocking, Oppressive Laws, Pressure on Tech Companies

(Moscow) – Russian authorities redoubled their efforts in 2021 to repress internet freedoms, Human Rights Watch said today. The government blocked popular censorship circumvention tools, experimented with novel censorship technologies, expanded…
A young man wearing a face mask checks his mobile phone at the State Russian Museum, Saint Petersburg, May 26, 2020.
News

Justice for 3R Abuses an Important Step Toward Accountability

On December 17, the Central African Republic’s Special Criminal Court (SCC) announced it will send its first case to trial. This is a significant moment in the difficult effort to see justice for heinous abuses committed in the most recent conflicts…
Judges from the Central African Republic’s Special Criminal Court (SCC) listen to arguments in a hearing
News

Will It Lead to Justice?

On October 28, the International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor, Karim Khan, on a visit to Bogota, announced that his office is closing down its preliminary examination in the country. The decision was cast as heralding a new chapter in the…
President Ivan Duque
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Duterte Administration Stalling Tactic Should Not Delay Justice

(New York) – The International Criminal Court prosecutor should seek to proceed with his office’s investigation into alleged crimes against humanity related to unlawful killings in President Rodrigo Duterte’s “war on drugs” in the Philippines, Human…
202112asia_philippines_protest
News

Justice, Solidarity Crucial to Confront Abuses Past and Present

On December 10, 2019, Abubacarr Tambadou, then Gambia’s justice minister, posed a question to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague. “Why is the world standing by and allowing such horrors again in our lifetime?” It was the first…
Anti-coup protesters run from teargas deployed by the police during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar, March 1, 2021.
Video
Police and soldiers have killed more than 1,300 people and arrested more than 10,000 protesters, journalists, and others in Myanmar. The methodical and systematic post-coup abuses, like those inflicted on the Rohingya, amount to crimes against…
News

Refocus on Support for Justice Amid Effort to Improve Performance

(The Hague) – Member countries of the International Criminal Court (ICC) should use their annual meeting to reinforce commitments for the court’s delivery of justice for the worst international crimes, Human Rights Watch said today. In advance…
ASp 2019
News

Civil Society Groups, Experts Urge Action Against Company

(Brussels) – The European Union should adopt targeted sanctions against NSO Group, the Israel-based company that produces spyware, 88 human rights groups and independent experts said today in a letter to the EU foreign policy chief and foreign…
NSO Group logo on building