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Punishment of Dissent; Impunity

(Beirut) – Iranian intelligence and judicial authorities continued their crackdown on dissent in 2021, while lawmakers passed and debated laws that further violate human rights, Human Rights Watch said in its World Report 2022. Over the past three…
Iranians gather during a protest after their province's river dried up due to drought and diversion, in the central city of Isfahan, on November 19, 2021.
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Increased Attacks on Critics of Government, Migrant Workers, LGBT People

(New York) – The Malaysian government used heavy-handed tactics in 2021, arbitrarily arresting critics of the government, pursuing anti-migrant policies, and bolstering threats against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people, Human…
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Military Junta’s Abuses Amount to Crimes Against Humanity

(New York) – The February 1, 2021 military coup in Myanmar overthrew democratic rule and plunged the country into steadily worsening rights abuses, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2022. Security forces under the junta led by Sr. Gen…
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Apparent Negligence Providing Medical Care for Baktash Abtin

(Beirut) – The death of the writer and poet Baktash Abtin in custody is emblematic of the dire situation Iranian authorities have created for imprisoned critics of the government, Human Rights Watch said today. Iranian officials should conduct…
Baktash Abtin.
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Tatmadaw Cadets Receive Training at Japanese Defense Academy

(Tokyo) – The Japanese government should cut ties with the Myanmar military and immediately suspend a military study-abroad program involving Myanmar cadets, Human Rights Watch said today. On February 1, 2021, the Myanmar military, known as the…
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Tens of Thousands of Students Will Lose Access to Education

(Bangkok) – The Bangladesh government should urgently reverse a decision to close thousands of home-based and community-led schools for Rohingya refugee students, Human Rights Watch said today. Unless the foreign minister or the disaster management…
Rohingya refugee students demonstrate against being expelled from Bangladeshi secondary schools in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, February 6, 2019.
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First Verdict in Slew of Fabricated Charges

Update: On December 6, the junta announced it was reducing the sentences of Aung San Suu Kyi and Win Myint from four to two years. It also announced they would be “detained in the current location for the remaining two years of imprisonment.” (…
Aung San Suu Kyi delivers a speech to the nation in Naypyidaw, Myanmar, September 19, 2017.
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Authorities Violently Disperse Peaceful Protest

(Berlin) – Azerbaijan police violently dispersed a peaceful protest in central Baku on December 1, 2021, and detained dozens of protesters, Human Rights Watch said today. Among those detained was an opposition leader, Tofig Yagublu, who…
Tofiq Yaqublu (file photo).
News

Hassan Bouba Should Be Re-Arrested After Surprise Release from Detention

(Nairobi) – The Central African Republic government should coordinate with United Nations peacekeepers to ensure that war crimes suspect Hassan Bouba, who was released from detention in defiance of court orders and escorted home by national gendarmes…
Hassan Bouba Ali (R) with Ali Darassa (C) surrounded by other UPC leaders, during a meeting at their headquarters in Alindao, October 2017.
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Important Step for Justice; Special Criminal Court Arrests Former Armed Group Leader

(Nairobi) – The Special Criminal Court (SCC) in the Central African Republic has arrested and brought charges against a government minister for war crimes and crimes against humanity in an important step for justice, Human Rights Watch said today. A…
Hassan Bouba Ali (R) with Ali Darassa (C) surrounded by other UPC leaders, during a meeting at their headquarters in Alindao, October 2017.
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Revenues from Foreign Companies Keep Military in Power

(New York) – Payments by energy and extractive companies to entities under the control of the Myanmar military are providing key funds to sustain the junta and pose serious legal, financial, and reputational risks to investors in those companies.…
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Denies Access to Essential Reproductive Health Care, Information

(Beirut) – Iran’s new population law further violates women’s rights to sexual and reproductive health and puts women’s health and lives at risk, Human Rights Watch said today. Iranian authorities should immediately repeal the provisions that restrict…
Iranian women walk down a street in the capital Tehran on February 7, 2018.
News

Proposed Commission Lacks Key Investigative Powers

(New York) – The Malaysian parliament should reject the proposed police complaints law and create an independent commission that will ensure real accountability for police abuses, Human Rights Watch said today in a joint statement with Amnesty…
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Deposed Political Leaders and Journalists Remain Detained

(Bangkok) – The Myanmar junta’s recent prisoner releases are limited in scope and do not reflect a broader change in the military’s respect for human rights, Human Rights Watch said today. On October 18, 2021, the State Administrative Council…
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News

Mistreatment and Medical Neglect

(Beirut) – Horrific reported details of Iranian authorities’ mistreatment in detention of Payam Derafshan, a respected human rights lawyer, show the Iranian intelligence agencies’ central role in repressing human rights activism, Human Rights Watch…
Payam Derafshan
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Authorities Deny Afghans Right to Seek Asylum

(New York) – Turkish authorities are summarily pushing Afghan asylum seekers crossing into the country from Iran back to Iran, in violation of international law, Human Rights Watch said today. Six Afghans, five of whom were pushed back, told Human…
A Turkish soldier stands at the Turkish border with Iran
News

Special Criminal Court Charges Sanctioned Commander

(Bangui) – The Special Criminal Court (SCC) in the Central African Republic, in an important step for justice, has brought charges against Capt. Eugène Ngaïkosset, known within the country as “The Butcher of Paoua,” Human Rights Watch said. His…
Special Prosecutor Toussaint Muntazini (right) and five other judges of Central African Republic’s Special Criminal Court (SCC) sit at the National Assembly in Bangui, having been sworn in on June 30, 2017.
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End Harassment, Prosecutions of Critics

(Bangkok) – Malaysia’s new prime minister, Ismail Sabri Yaakob, should commit to respect the rights to free speech and peaceful assembly, which have long been suppressed in the country, Human Rights Watch said today. Malaysia’s king appointed Ismail…
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News

Universal Jurisdiction Provides Opening for Justice for Long-Ignored Crimes

(Stockholm) – The opening of a landmark trial in Sweden on August 10, 2021 of an Iranian citizen accused of participating in the mass execution of political prisoners is an important moment for victims long denied recognition and justice. On July…
A human rights exhibition on Iran during the international campaign to demand justice for the victims of the 1988 massacre, held near the French National Assembly in Paris, November 14, 2017.
News

Governments Should Halt Trade in Surveillance Technology

(New York) – Recent reports that NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware has been used for surveillance of dozens of journalists, human rights activists, and others demonstrate the urgent need for governments to suspend the trade in surveillance technology until…
People march in Budapest, Hungary during a July 26, 2021 protest against the Hungarian government over reports that it has used Pegasus spyware.