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Brunei’s Syariah Penal Code (2013) went into effect on April 3, 2019.[1] The new code poses grave threats to fundamental human rights and discriminates against the country’s most vulnerable groups, including children, women, and religious and sexual…
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Human Rights Watch respectfully submits the following information to David Anderson QC for the Investigatory Powers Review. Firstly, we explain the need to reform UK legislation governing surveillance to bring it in line with the UK’s human rights…
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This week, the European Union’s top court invalidated the EU’s data retention law, calling into question whether blanket data retention can ever be consistent with human rights requirements. This decision is a major victory for digital rights groups which…
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A Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

Summary Racist and other hate violence is a problem in Germany—as it is in many European Union countries— with hundreds of violent attacks recorded by authorities and civil society groups each year. Germany has made progress in…
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Preventing needless suffering of the terminally ill in India

In January, years of joint advocacy by Human Rights Watch and Indian palliative care groups culminated in the Medical Council of India recognizing palliative care as a specialization of medicine and approving an MD Palliative Care program. Over time, this…
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The search engine stops censoring information and ideas in China

Last month, Google - one of the world's most important technology companies - stood up to the Chinese government by making it clear that it will not be complicit in censoring information and ideas. For years, corporations - including Google, Yahoo!,…
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A Human Rights Platform for Candidates

On March 7, Iraq's voters will head to the polls nationwide to select all 325 members of parliament. The election will be a key indicator on whether the country is moving toward greater political stability and respect for human rights and away from the…
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Dutch Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk has granted special asylum rights to lesbian and gay Iranians. According to the ministry’s October 18 statement, the decision was motivated by Human Rights Watch’s forthcoming report on serious and systematic abuse…
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Citing Human Rights Watch’s work, Dutch members of parliament successfully pressured Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk not to deport lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) asylum-seekers back to Iran, where they face the threat of torture, ill-…
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Legal guarantees     The absence of legal guarantees is one of the main causes of Saudi Arabia’s serious human rights problems. Without specific legal protections, neither the government nor judges, not to mention ordinary citizens, can…
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A Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

On June 17, 2005, Iran holds its ninth presidential election, as well as mid-term elections for the seventh parliament. As in all previous elections, candidates wishing to compete in these elections must first win approval by the powerful Guardian Council…
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One year after the adoption of the country strategy, it is clear that the benchmarks did not trigger the necessary reforms. This failure is attributable, first and foremost, to the Uzbek government's flagrant disregard for human rights and democracy, an…
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In a 16-page briefing paper, “The Iraqi Government Assault on the Marsh Arabs,” Human Rights Watch documents how systematic bombardment of villages, widespread arbitrary arrests, torture, “disappearances,” summary executions, and forced displacement have…
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Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

For years the government of Uzbekistan has violated the right to freedom of conscience by imprisoning and persecuting independent Muslims—Muslims whose peaceful practice of their faith falls beyond government controls. This briefing paper describes…
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During much of 2001, there was increased tension between Buddhist and Muslim communities in Burma, at times erupting into violence. News of the violence was quickly suppressed, however, and little detailed information about what took place reached the…
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In 1999, the Chinese government banned Falungong, a variant of an ancient exercise and meditation system. The government labeled Falungong an "evil cult" and began an aggressive and often violent campaign against its practitioners which continues…
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Human Rights Watch Backgrounder

In the wake of the September 11 attacks on the United States, the People's Republic of China has offered strong support for Washington and affirmed that it "opposes terrorism of any form and supports actions to combat terrorism." Human Rights Watch is…
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Press Backgrounder on Human Rights

President Mohammed Khatami of Iran is scheduled to visit the United Nations next week. On the occasion of this newsworthy trip, Human Rights Watch has prepared the following backgrounder on the domestic situation in Iran. We also attach a recent press…