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Government Should Prioritize Prevention, Eradication, and Services for Survivors

On August 14, Ecuador commemorated the country’s first national day against sexual violence in schools. A year ago, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights found Ecuador responsible for the violations of Paola Guzmán Albarracín’s rights. Paola, who…
Judges at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights hear the case Paola Guzmán Albarracín’s mother brought against Ecuador in San José, Costa Rica on January 28, 2020.
News

President Should Veto Problematic Provisions of New Law

Ecuador’s President Guillermo Lasso has until June 10, 2021 to act on the recently-passed Law to Prevent Violence, Digital Harassment, and Violation of Privacy. The law addresses important issues regarding gender-based violence and violence against…
Ecuadorian President Guillermo Lasso attends the change of military command
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Authorities Should Investigate Attacks, Ensure Accountability

Riots that broke out in four large prisons in Ecuador on February 23 have left at least 79 detainees dead. The prisons, located in Guayaquil, Cuenca, and Latacunga, host 70 percent of Ecuador’s prison population nationwide. These violent events are an…
Tear gas rises from parts of Turi jail where an inmate riot broke out in Cuenca, Ecuador, February 23, 2021.
News

President Frees Prisoners but More Remain

The numbers were down from the hundreds of thousands who filled the streets of Algerian cities when the “Hirak” protest movement began, but the thousands who marched February 22, despite Covid-19 restrictions, to mark the Hirak’s second anniversary,…
Algerians demonstrate in Algiers to mark the second anniversary of the Hirak movement, February 22, 2021. 
News

Freedom of Belief Article Dropped — and All Pretense of Respecting It?

It is sadly commonplace that many countries that respect human rights the least have constitutions that respect human rights the most. Iraq’s constitution under Saddam Hussein, for example, guaranteed freedom of expression, assembly, religion, privacy…
Yacine Mebarki
News

Government Mandates Reporting HIV Status, Deports People Living with HIV

In Jordan, medical professionals and health facilities are mandated to report an individual’s HIV status to the government. Foreign nationals found to be HIV-positive are summarily deported regardless of the consequences to their health and safety and…
Silhouettes are cast on a Jordanian national flag in Amman, Jordan, November 30, 2016. 
News

Proposed Health Code Would Improve Protection for Women, Girls, LGBTI People

Ecuador’s National Assembly has approved a new health code that would help all in Ecuador enjoy better access to health care. The bill, nearly 8 years in the making, was approved on August 25 by a vote of 79 to 58, and now requires the signature of…
The flag of Ecuador. 
News

Government Should Fully Implement Inter-American Court Ruling

The Inter-American Court of Human Rights last week ruled against Ecuador in its first ever case on school-related sexual violence in the Americas. In 2001, a public school vice principal in the city of Guayaquil began raping a 14-year-old pupil,…
The flag of Ecuador. 
News

Two Prosecutions Highlight Threats to Press Freedom

Morocco and Algeria are neighbors and rivals, sharing one of the world’s longest closed-land borders, vying for diplomatic supremacy in the Maghreb region, sparring over Western Sahara, and insulting each other’s governments daily via state-influenced…
Journalists Khaled Drareni (Left) and Omar Radi (Right)
News

Ministerial Resolution Endangers Protesters

Ecuador’s Constitutional Court holds a public hearing today to discuss whether a recent ministerial resolution giving the military broad powers to use lethal force is constitutional. The resolution also allows armed forces to participate in public…
Soldiers in riot gear arrive to reinforce authorities after street merchants protested the seizure of their merchandise by the municipal police of Quito, Ecuador, Thursday, May 21, 2020.
News

Legal Amendment May Threaten Livelihoods and Living Standards

Like many governments around the world, Jordan has been forced to take urgent economic measures amid the Covid-19 pandemic. In April, it used emergency decrees to alter labor and social security laws, and on May 31, it further loosened labor…
 People shop for vegetables at the main market in Karak, Jordan, after a curfew was lifted for some southern cities, amid concerns about the coronavirus Wednesday, April 22, 2020.
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President Pledges Wide Consultation on Draft While Reporters, Protest Leaders Locked Up

If imprisoned Algerian journalist Khaled Drareni managed to get a copy of the draft constitution Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune circulated in early May, he might savor the irony. The draft – like the current constitution – provides that “…
An Algerian demonstrator holds the Algerian national flag as he stage a protest against the government in Algiers, Algeria, Friday, Nov.29, 2019. 
News

Authorities should investigate and bring those responsible to justice

Police in Guayaquil, Ecuador – the heart of the country’s coronavirus epidemic – used apparent excessive force to break up a peaceful protest held on May 14 by civil society groups, beating and injuring demonstrators.  The 40…
People transporting the remains of deceased loved ones wait in a slow moving line outside Jardines de la Esperanza Cemetery to hold burials in Guayaquil, Ecuador, April 6, 2020.
News

State of Emergency Can’t Bar Access to Justice

Ecuador’s Constitutional Court has issued an important decision upholding the fundamental right to an effective remedy for human rights violations amidst the country’s current state of emergency. The April 28 ruling comes after a series of…
Families wearing masks wait outside their homes in the neighborhood of Cristo del Consuelo for food handouts from the local government in Guayaquil, Ecuador, April 14, 2020.
News

Protesters Languish in Prison for Peaceful Dissent

For some authoritarians, the coronavirus tragedy has presented a golden opportunity to grab more power and trample rights. Hungary’s parliament has voted to allow Prime Minister Victor Orban to rule by decree indefinitely, and in Hong…
Security forces stand at a checkpoint to enforce a curfew aiming to prevent the spread of corona virus in Algiers, Algeria, April 8, 2020.
News

Survivors and Advocates Seek Help from UN Human Rights Committee

Norma* (*indicates a pseudonym) was 12 when her father began raping her. She became pregnant shortly thereafter. Though abortion is legal in Ecuador when a woman or girl’s life or health is in danger, no one told her this. She gave birth despite…
#NiñasNoMadres
News
Washington, D.C., May 8, 2019 Honorable Justice Hernán Salgado Pesantes President of the Ecuadorian Constitutional Court Quito – ECUADOR Case: 0014-19-IN Subject: Human Rights Watch Amicus curiae on Venezuelan…
News
Honorable Justice Hernán Salgado Pesantes Ecuadorian Constitutional Court Quito – Ecuador Case: 0011-18-CN José Miguel Vivanco, on behalf of Human Rights Watch, located at 350 Fifth Avenue, 34th floor, New York, United…
News

Provincial Court Expected to Rule on Same-Sex Marriage

When two same-sex couples went to the civil registry in the city of Cuenca, Ecuador to get married last April, they were refused. The registry argued no Ecuadorian laws would permit their marriage. The couples went to court. …
201809americas_ecuador_lgbt_pride
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Attorney General’s Office Should Investigate Decision to Prosecute

Yesterday, a court in Ecuador found Agustín Wachapá, a Shuar indigenous leader who opposes mining in the Ecuadorian Amazon, not guilty of inciting violence. The verdict ends a 17-month ordeal that Wachapá should never have endured. …
Agustín Wachapá, a Shuar indigenous leader.