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Bénédicte Jeannerod is France director at Human Rights Watch. Lorena Cotza is communications lead at Coalition for Human Rights in Development. As it prepares to celebrate its 30th anniversary on April 15, the European Bank for Reconstruction and…
Odile Renaud-Basso, former head of the French treasury who was elected president of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) in November 2020.
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Hundreds of thousands of people demonstrate daily against the military junta in Burma (also known as Myanmar). Many Burmese people have expressed their opposition to the military's takeover of the democratically elected government – but they need the…
Mandalay University graduates bow their heads as they hold posters of Mya Thwet Thwet Khine, a 19-year-old woman fatally shot by police on February 9 in Naypyidaw, during an anti-coup protest in Mandalay, Myanmar, February 14, 2021. 
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In crowded, unhygienic prisons, the spread of the disease presents a serious threat. Will President Sisi put reason before punishment?

  In a country like Egypt where basic rights are severely stifled, there are many rights-related ramifications during a public health crisis. One of the most urgent is the impact on vulnerable groups, such as those in closed, densely crowded…
An Egyptian police officer at the entrance of the Tora prison in the Egyptian capital Cairo.
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Azerbaijan is celebrating its National Press Day today. But when it comes to press freedoms, there’s not much to celebrate, argues Catherine Pilishvili from Human Rights Watch.  Just ask Seymur Hazi. He was a leading columnist for the opposition…
Azerbaijani journalist Afgan Mukhtarli is brought to the court after he has been abducted in Georgia and forcibly taken to neighboring Azerbaijan where he was detained in custody.
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Azerbaijan and Georgia need to answer urgent questions about reporter’s kidnapping and imprisonment.

Two years ago, prominent Azerbaijani journalist and IWPR contributor Afgan Mukhtarli vanished from the centre of Tbilisi.  That evening he had met a friend in a cafe, picked up some bread on the way back and called his wife Leyla Mustafayeva, also a…
Afgan Mukhtarli
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Rarely does an event more clearly embody a country’s human-rights decline than the Myanmar court’s sentencing of two Reuters journalists to seven years in prison for allegedly violating a colonial-era law on protecting state secrets.…
Kyaw Soe Oo carries his daughter while escorted by police outside a court in Yangon, Myanmar, June 18, 2018.
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When a group of high school and university students staged a play at a peace conference in Burma early this January, they never imagined that they would end up in prison. The play, performed at a gathering of civil society…
Poet Maung Saung Kha served six months in prison for posting a poem online. He was released in May 2016.
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Over the last two years, Azerbaijan has rapidly become one of the most oppressive countries in the post-Soviet space. Still, in a somewhat surprising alliance between CDU and Die Linke the MPs Mark Hauptmann (CDU), Eberhard Gienger (CDU…
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2015 Recipient of the Alison Des Forges Award for Extraordinary Activism

UPDATE: On May 25, 2016, the Supreme Court ordered the release of Khadija Ismayilova from prison. While her conviction still stands and her freedoms are curtailed by the authorities, including her freedom of movement, this is a moment to celebrate. Human…
Khadija Ismayilova
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Azerbaijan is decimating its human rights activists, and why not? It’s faced almost no consequences for its repression.

The Kremlin’s sweeping, anti-Western crackdown on freedoms in Russia has made headlines everywhere. Government-fomented anti-Western hysteria is at a height not seen since the Soviet era. The government’s witch hunt to ban “undesirable” foreign groups and…
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The bank should develop a strategy to end attacks on community members and activists and provide remedies to victims

In countries around the world, people who suffer harm because of development projects financed by the World Bank Group take grave risks to speak out and often face severe consequences. Yet the bank has taken few concrete steps to protect community members…
Members of the Boeung Kak community protest peacefully in Phnom Penh, May 2013.
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Rather than being a catalyst for positive change, the European Games have become a weapon in Baku’s effort to promote itself as progressive while continuing to crush independent voices. The recent FIFA corruption scandal is not the only major…
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The impact of Myanmar's repressive policy toward Rohingya Muslims was made clear in recent weeks with scenes of desperate people crammed into boats, an escalation of a miserable maritime flight in which an estimated 90,000 people have fallen prey to…
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In July 2012, an Ethiopian court charged the prominent journalist Eskinder Nega with conspiring to commit terrorist acts. He was sentenced to 18 years in prison under a broad and ill-defined law. His crime? Writing about the…
Defense lawyer Abebe Guta
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Facing massive human rights crackdown as the European Games near, EU should call a timeout.

I was dreading my visit to Baku at the end of March. In the 10 months since my last visit, the Azerbaijan authorities have either arrested or imprisoned many of my friends and colleagues there, or driven them into exile or hiding. During the short flight…
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The bold activists around the world who stand up to corporate and government economic interests frequently face a harsh backlash. Individuals and communities are threatened, and activists may be arrested or killed with impunity in retaliation for speaking…