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A new treaty to deepen the link between environmental protection and human rights in Latin America and the Caribbean has the potential to reduce the conflicts that lead to the murders of so many environmental defenders in the region. 
 
 The…
Bernardo, a man in his 30s, was born in a quilombo (Afro-Brazilian) community of around 60, men, women, and children in Minas Gerais State, southeast Brazil. Bernardo told Human Rights Watch that he feels powerless against aerial spraying of pesticides. “
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For many Australians, Laos is a scenic, off-the-beaten path, holiday destination for adventurous travelers. Relatively few know that it's also a repressive one-party state with a long record of restricting basic rights, and imprisoning or forcibly…
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BANGKOK — It has been two years since the enforced disappearance of Sombath Somphone, a renowned civil society leader in Laos and 2005 Magsaysay Award winner. He vanished at a police checkpoint in Vientiane on December 15, 2012. Despite the efforts of his…
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A year and a half later, where is Sombath Somphone? In Laos that simple question has been blocked by a wall of silence. He was last seen driving home on December 15, 2012, in the capital, Vientiane, before he was forcibly disappeared. Government security…
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Around the world, millions of people are locked up because of drug use. Some languish in prisons, some in compulsory drug detention centers. Few have access to effective, evidence-based treatment for drug dependency if they need it. The problem is not…
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This past week in Bangkok, the ASEAN Inter-government Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) discussed one of the most important documents drafted by ASEAN since the regional grouping adopted the ASEAN Charter five years ago. The ASEAN Human Rights…
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Subverting standards within the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration

In July, the ASEAN foreign ministers meeting in Phnom Penh will receive one of the most important documents drafted since the adoption five years ago of the ASEAN Charter. The ASEAN Declaration on Human Rights supposedly rings in a “new ASEAN” that is “…
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Today’s Laos has a communist government that institutes free market reforms and advertises itself as a haven for backpacking tourists. It recently opened its own stock market. For many Americans, especially, Laos still evokes images of the ‘secret war’…
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Police and local militia in Vientiane, the capital of Laos, are forcibly detaining people who use drugs in a so-called treatment centre where the detainees risk beatings and other abuse, according to a Human Rights Watch report released today.
 
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(Washington)- A virus is sweeping Asia. The symptoms are heightened xenophobia and amnesia about fundamental refugee rights. Australia and Indonesia succumbed first, in October, when they stopped boats carrying Sri Lankans. Neither country would allow…
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Bordered by authoritarian regimes, Thailand has long struggled to deal with waves of asylum seekers. But Bangkok's decision to repatriate ethnic Hmong to Laos this week stands as a blot on the nation's reputation as a humane port of refuge. A force of…
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(New York) - As leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) meet at the Thai beach resort of Hua Hin this week, recent events on other Asian coastlines presents a challenge to the grouping. The plight of the ethnic Rohingya Muslim…