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An Interview with Hugh Williamson

In many Eastern European and Central Asian countries, media discourse suffers from the freedom of expression not being respected. Nonetheless, the situation is not hopeless, according to Hugh Williamson of Human Rights Watch. He shared his insights in…
Uzbekistan’s media landscape, made up of independent, state-sponsored, and international Uzbek and Russian language media outlets, is in a period of growth and change, as journalists test the boundaries of respect for free expression.
News

An Interview with Hugh Williamson

CABAR.asia: Recently, the authorities of the Central Asian countries have been actively regulating online activities, adopting various laws that help them control the internet. How are things going with the freedom of the internet, with internet…
Uzbekistan’s media landscape, made up of independent, state-sponsored, and international Uzbek and Russian language media outlets, is in a period of growth and change, as journalists test the boundaries of respect for free expression.
News
Congress, or at least parts of it, is getting restless with the White House approach to human rights abuses in Central Asia. A recent hearing by the House of Representatives’ Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission on the region’s terrible human rights record…
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If Home Secretary Theresa May thinks the Jordanian government can be trusted not to torture its prisoners, she needs to look a little harder at the evidence It is an abysmal spectacle to watch: the UK is vigorously surveying routes for a detour around the…
News

If Theresa May is serious about protecting Abu Qatada, she must press for real change in Jordan

Torture occupies a special place in international law – it is banned at all times and in all places, no exceptions. Most countries, including the UK and Jordan, have signed up to the UN Convention Against Torture, which means they agree not only to the…
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BERLIN, Germany — As the Arab Spring shows, it is never, ever, a good idea to go to bed with dictators.   The regimes of deposed strongmen like Egypt’s Mubarak and Tunisia’s Ben Ali enjoyed sponsorship from the US and Europe. Now that legacy haunts the…
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Human Rights Watch calls on the Uzbek government to immediately and unconditionally release all wrongfully imprisoned activists, several of whom suffer from serious illness and at least seven of whom have been ill-treated or subjected to torture in…
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(OSH)  - "They don't stop beating me. Please, sell your house, your car, your last things to get me out of here." Nafiza (not her real name) recalls the words from memory, written by her 37-year-old son in a letter smuggled out of prison by a policeman…
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On June 12, the UN Human Rights Council, consisting of 47 member states of the UN, concluded the first comprehensive human rights review of Jordan. The review produced 79 recommendations. (Jordan rejected 26 of them.)  Most of Jordan's human rights…
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Human Rights Watch and JUSTICE Amicus Brief to the UK House of Lords

The British government has sought to deport terrorism or national security suspects in reliance on diplomatic assurances against torture from the men's home governments. In two important cases to be heard in October 2008-RB and U v. Secretary of State…
News

A harrowing account from a man the CIA handed over to Jordan – smuggled from prison on tiny paper – exposes U.S. complicity in torture.

During a recent visit to the home of someone who had been detained by the Jordanian intelligence service in 2002, Joanne Mariner was given two very thin strips of paper covered with Arabic writing and marked with a thumbprint. The message's author was a…
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"Why Jordan?" The question puzzled Abu Hamza al-Tabuki, a Saudi citizen who claims that US agents arrested him in Afghanistan in December 2001 and, after interrogating him in Pakistan, flew him in a private jet to Jordan. Al-Tabuki is one of more than a…
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Even as the UK was negotiating its assurances with Jordan, the United States was knowingly sending terrorism suspects to Jordan for purposes of interrogation under torture. The evidence of US complicity in the torture of terrorism suspects in Jordan also…
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Our policy of sending terror suspects to countries where they may face torture will surely backfire.

There is a chronic epidemic of torture in the Middle East and it feeds directly into political militancy, conflict and terrorism. Extremist groups like al-Qaida have long been led and inspired by victims of state torture. The west has winked and nodded at…
News

Despite what the Prime Minister says, the rules of the game have not changed

In the days after the bombings of 7 July, there were many reasons to feel proud to be a Londoner. Politicians responded with dignity to the terrible events. People of all faiths stood together in the knowledge that those who had commissioned these crimes…
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The bureaucratic term for it is “Country of Particular Concern.” That´s how the United States government describes nations that abuse religious freedom, under the 1998 International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA). And this month, the State Department…
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Dictatorships should not be rewarded. A simple enough lesson, you might think. It is, however, a lesson that Britain and other European governments seem reluctant to take on board. Clare Short, the Secretary of State for International Development, is due…
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