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Government Failed to Protect Rights Groups, Migrant Workers

(New York) – The Maldives authorities responded to the Covid-19 pandemic by cracking down on peaceful protests and compounding threats to migrant workers and other vulnerable groups, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2021. President…
Security personnel patrol an accommodation block where Bangladeshi migrant workers are being quarantined after Covid-19 cases were found in the area, Malé, Maldives, May 9, 2020.

Death Penalty Push Ignores Real Solutions to Regional Failings

(New York) – South Asian governments should disregard populist death penalty rhetoric and listen to their own experts to prevent and end sexual violence against women, Human Rights Watch said in a video released today. Experts on sexual violence from…

11 Asia-Pacific Governments Oppose 120 States on Capital Punishment Moratorium

(Bangkok) – Eleven countries from the Asia-Pacific region were among the small minority that voted against a United Nations resolution opposing the death penalty, Human Rights Watch said today. On November 17, 120 UN member states voted in favor of a…
A view of the United Nations General Assembly, at UN headquarters, October 1, 2018.

Officials Claim National Security to Justify Mistreating Foreign Workers

(New York) – The Maldives police have detained more than 80 migrant workers in July for protesting unpaid wages, inhumane living conditions, and labor rights violations, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities should drop charges and release…
Migrant workers weigh scrap metal, Thilafushi, Maldives.

Broad Restrictions on Protests Violate Rights

(New York) – The Maldives government is enforcing restrictions on protests that violate fundamental rights, Human Rights Watch said today. New regulations also threaten civil society groups for supporting peaceful protests. Migrant workers who…
Foreign workers from Bangladesh gather in an alleyway of an accommodation block after being put under quarantine to contain the spread of Covid-19, May 9, 2020 in Male, Maldives. 

Uphold Free Expression; Investigate Violent Attacks

(New York) –Groups that endorse violent ultra-nationalist or Islamist ideology have tried to shut down a leading women’s rights organization in the Maldives since mid-June 2020, and have threatened other activist groups, Human Rights Watch said today…

Tree Destruction Exacerbates Flooding Threatening Islanders

(New York) – The Maldives government should preserve a mangrove forest that helps protect local residents against increased risks from flooding and coastal erosion, Human Rights Watch said today. A large portion of the mangrove forest…
Mangroves in Haa Alifu Atoll, Maldives.

Despite Pledges, Government Fails to Protect Journalists, Activists

(New York) – The Maldives government began to address longstanding human rights concerns in 2019, but yielded to pressure from extremist religious groups to crack down on free expression, Human Rights Watch said today in its World…
Maldives’ former President Mohamed Nasheed and current President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih take part in an election rally ahead of parliamentary polls, Malé, February 1, 2019.
(New York) – The Maldives government, on October 10, 2019, “temporarily” shut down the Maldivian Democracy Network (MDN), the country’s leading human rights organization, Human Rights Watch said today. The government…
Ibrahim Mohamed Solih interacts with supporters during a gathering in Malé, Maldives, September 24, 2018.

President Solih Should Reverse Abuses of Past Government

(New York) – The Maldives saw new hope for human rights improvements during late 2018 after joint opposition candidate Ibrahim Mohamed Solih defeated President Yameen Abdul Gayoom by a wide margin in September, Human Rights Watch said…
Supporters of challenger Ibrahim Mohamed Solih celebrate his victory in the presidential election, Malé, Maldives, September 24, 2018.

Letter to President Ibrahim Solih Highlights Key Areas

(New York) – The Maldives’ new government should make human rights protections a top priority, Human Rights Watch said in a letter to President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih made public today. Solih, who was elected president on September 23,…
Ibrahim Mohamed Solih interacts with supporters during a gathering in Malé, Maldives, September 24, 2018.

New Rules Threaten Free Vote on September 23

(New York) – The Maldives government-controlled Election Commission appears to have adopted new vote-counting rules that threaten prospects for a free and fair election on September 23, 2018, Human Rights Watch said today. The government of…
Abdulla Yameen takes his oath as the President of Maldives during a swearing-in ceremony at the parliament in Male November 17, 2013.

Crackdown Threatens Fairness of September Elections

(New York) – The Maldives government’s intimidation of the political opposition and media threatens prospects for free and fair elections in September 2018, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The government of this…
Police officers detain an opposition protester demanding the release of political prisoners during a demonstration in Malé, Maldives, February 2, 2018.

Electoral Commission Threatens to Reject Results, Dissolve Party

(New York) – The Maldives’ Election Commission should end its politically motivated exclusion of opposition party candidates from the September 2018 presidential elections, Human Rights Watch said today. The Election…
A supporter shouts slogans during a protest calling for the release of opposition political prisoners in front of the Maldives embassy in Colombo, Sri Lanka, March 6, 2018.

End Attacks on Judiciary, Political Opposition

(New York) – The Maldives government should immediately drop politically motivated charges against two Supreme Court justices and release them from detention, Human Rights Watch said today. On May 10, 2018, Chief Justice Abdulla Saeed…
Police officers stand guard near the opposition party headquarters after President Abdulla Yameen declared a state of emergency in Male, Maldives, February 6, 2018.

Finds Ban on Same-Sex Marriage Discriminatory

(Amsterdam, December 6, 2017) – The Austrian Constitutional Court’s ruling on December 4, 2017, that a ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional is a powerful victory for equal marriage rights, Human Rights Watch said today…
Austria's Constitutional Court (Verfassungsgerichtshof) in Vienna, Austria.
(Milan) – The law approved today by the National Council of the Austrian parliament is a blow to the rights of asylum seekers, Human Rights Watch said today. The law, which is expected to pass quickly and unchallenged in the parliament’s upper chamber,…

Austrian President Should Urge an End to Enforced Disappearances

(Berlin) – President Heinz Fischer of Austria should urge President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov of Turkmenistan to address serious human rights problems in the country, Human Rights Watch said today. Berdymukhamedov is scheduled to meet Dr. Fischer in…

Upcoming Trial Suggests Links between Ramzan Kadyrov and Vienna Killing

(New York) ­- The Russian government should closely examine evidence gathered by the Austrian police relating to Chechnya's leader, Human Rights Watch said today. The evidence suggests that the Kremlin-appointed leader of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, was…