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French and British Governments Need New Approach to Irregular Migration

At least 27 people, including a young girl, died in the frigid waters off France this week while trying to cross to the United Kingdom in an inflatable dinghy. The tragedy has intensified a dispute between British and French officials over who bears…
Activists and members of associations defending migrants' rights light candles in front of a banner reading "309 dead on the France UK border since 1999", during a gathering outside the port of Calais, northern France, November 25, 2021.
Report
Summary Thousands of people are stuck in a desperate limbo at the border of Belarus and Poland in circumstances that violate their rights, in some cases egregiously, and put their lives at risk. Encouraged by local travel agents in the Middle East to…
News

Justice Department Should Move Against Abusive, Discriminatory ‘Operation Lone Star’

(Washington, DC) – Texas has arrested more than 1,500 migrants since March 2021 under a discriminatory and abusive operation that targets suspected migrants for arrest, prosecution, and incarceration on state misdemeanor offenses, Human Rights Watch…
Texas Governor Greg Abbott talks about Operation Lone Star during a press conference at the Texas Department of Public Safety Weslaco Regional Office on April 1, 2021, in Weslaco, Texas.
News
After images of Border Patrol agents on horseback aggressively swinging lariats at and chasing Black migrants along the U.S.-Mexico border shocked the public in September, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas was quick to promise a…
A man stands with his hands on the back of a van marked "Border Patrol"
News

Stop Criminalizing Humanitarian Rescuers

(Athens) – Two humanitarian activists who provided life-saving aid to migrants and asylum seekers trying to reach Greece will face charges in a trial scheduled for November 18, 2021, Human Rights Watch said today. The trial at the Mytilene Misdemeanor…
Humanitarian activists Sarah Mardini and Sean Binder
News

Government Should Not Dismiss, But Act on Reports of Inhumane Treatment

Three weeks after French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin dismissed a Human Rights Watch report on police abuse against migrants in northern France as “lies,” national officials are beginning to change their tone. Didier Leschi, head of the French…
A woman and two children stand in front of two police officers
Report
Summary As the harmful effects of immigration detention become more widely known and the appropriateness of detaining migrants is increasingly questioned, governments are looking at alternatives to detention as more humane and rights-respecting…
News

Ensure Safety, Basic Needs, Restart Evacuations

(Amman) – More than 2,000 African asylum seekers, refugees, and migrants camping since early October 2021 in precarious conditions in front of a shuttered United Nations facility are in dire need of shelter, food, and medical treatment, Human Rights…
Asylum seekers and refugees camped in front of a shuttered facility managed by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR)  in Tripoli,
News

Activists at Risk of Persecution, Torture if Returned Home

(Berlin) – The Turkish government should halt any plans to deport two detained Turkmen activists to Turkmenistan, where they will be at grave risk of arbitrary arrest and torture, Human Rights Watch said today. Turkish authorities…
A man walks near Fatih mosque in Istanbul, Turkey.
Report
  Summary In 2017, a US Border Patrol agent kneed a woman in the lower pelvis, leaving bruises and pain days later, according to her statement to a government official screening her asylum claim. In a separate incident that year, a Border…
Report
Summary Syria is a death country, a kidnapping country. Anyone coming back will lose their money or their life. — Salam, 26, from al-Jeza in Daraa Syrian refugees who voluntarily returned to Syria between 2017 and 2021 from Lebanon and Jordan…
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(Beirut) – Syrian refugees who returned to Syria between 2017 and 2021 from Lebanon and Jordan faced grave human rights abuses and persecution at the hands of the Syrian government and affiliated militias, Human Rights Watch…
Report
Summary Five years after French authorities dismantled a sprawling migrant encampment on the edge of Calais, large numbers of migrants continue to arrive in northern France, many in the hope of crossing the Channel to reach the United Kingdom. Today…
News
Five years ago this month, French authorities dismantled the sprawling Calais migrant encampment known as the “Jungle,” dispersing hundreds of men, women, and children to refugee centers across the country. But because the draw of northern France is its…
Abdul Saboor at his home in Paris, March 2021.
News

Strategy of Enforced Misery Against Children, Adults

(Paris) – French officials regularly subject adults and children living in migrant encampments around Calais to degrading treatment, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Five years after French authorities demolished the sprawling…
Two children wearing winter coats stand in a forest in front of a group of police officers
News
Since mid-September, United States and Mexican authorities have removed thousands of mostly Haitian migrants and asylum seekers from makeshift camps in Del Rio, Texas and Ciudad Acuña, across the border in the Mexican state of Coahuila. The US has…
Haitians deported from the United States leave Toussaint Louverture International Airport under a rain shower in Port au Prince, Haiti on September 19, 2021.
News

Regarding Resettlement and Complementary Pathways for Afghans

October 1, 2021 Members of the European Union Justice and Home Affairs Council Re: Resettlement and Complementary Pathways for Afghans   Dear Minister, We write to urge your government to make concrete and meaningful pledges to assist…
News

Children Trained to Fight, Deployed Against Government Forces

(Johannesburg) – An Islamic State (ISIS) linked armed group in northern Mozambique is kidnapping boys and using them to fight government forces in violation of the international prohibition on the use of child soldiers, Human Rights Watch said today…
A destroyed house in the town of Mbau, Mozambique, September 23, 2021.