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Systematic Violations Underpin Country’s Cotton Sector

(Brussels) – The World Bank is funding half a billion dollars in agricultural projects linked to forced and child labor in Uzbekistan, Human Rights Watch and the Uzbek-German Forum for Human Rights said in a report released today. Under the…
A woman picks cotton during the 2015 cotton harvest, which runs from early September to late October or early November annually.
News

Bank’s Management a Key Obstacle

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank has refused to acknowledge its human rights obligations in its new policy framework, Human Rights Watch said today. The bank’s third, and most likely final, draft of its new environmental and social framework, published…
A detainee in a government-run drug detention center in Vietnam. The World Bank provided funding for various HIV-related services in Vietnamese drug detention centers through a project that concluded in 2012.
News

Complaint Filed in Cotton Production Case

(Washington, DC) – A victim of forced labor in cotton production and three Uzbek human rights defenders filed a complaint on June 30, 2016, against the World Bank’s private lending arm, the Cotton Campaign coalition, the Uzbek-German Forum for Human…
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Health, Security, Livelihoods at Risk in Turkana Region

(Nairobi, October 15, 2015) – Climate change and regional development projects are threatening the health and livelihood of indigenous peoples in the Turkana region of northwest Kenya, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The…
Pastoralist woman
News

Prevent, Respond to Reprisals

(Washington, DC, June 22, 2015) The World Bank Group has done little to prevent or dissuade governments from intimidating critics of the projects it funds, or monitor for reprisals, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.   …
Members of the Boeung Kak Lake community in Cambodia demonstrate at a police blockade in December 2012 on the second day of community activist Yorm Bopha’s trial.
News

Decision on Forced Labor ‘Shocking,’ Rights Advocates Say

(Washington, DC) – The decision by the World Bank’s internal watchdog not to investigate the link between the bank’s loans and Uzbek government-organized forced labor is alarming, the Cotton Campaign said today. The Cotton Campaign said it supports the…
News

Inspection Panel Should Ensure Funds Not Used for Abuses

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank’s internal watchdog should investigate whether bank projects are contributing to forced labor in Uzbekistan, the Cotton Campaign said today. The Cotton Campaign, a coalition of human rights, labor, investor, and business…
News

Treat, Compensate Victims of Mombasa Smelter

(Nairobi) – Thousands of people in a poor urban district outside Mombasa face serious health consequences from toxic lead from a battery recycling plant, Human Rights Watch said today. The crisis is the result of the Kenyan government’s failure to…
News

Proposed Cotton Project Will Finance Forced, Child Labor

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank should not proceed with projects directly benefiting Uzbekistan’s cotton industry until the Uzbek government has taken meaningful steps to end grave human rights violations in cotton production, including forced labor,…
News

Proposed Project Fails to Address Forced, Child Labor

Update: On September 25, the Asian Development Bank’s board approved the $220 million loan for the Modernization and Improved Performance of the Amu Bukhara Irrigation System (ABIS) project in Uzbekistan. This project will benefit the cotton industry.…
News

Decision Ignores Gibe III Dam’s Impact on Indigenous Peoples, Environmental Concerns

(Washington, DC) – The World Bank undermined the rights of indigenous peoples and the environment with its approval on July 12, 2012, of a US$684 million loan, Human Rights Watch, Friends of Lake Turkana, International Rivers, Survival International, and…
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The U.S. State Department’s decision to cut aid to the Uzbek government over its lack of progress on human rights is a welcome show of principled leadership, Human Rights Watch said today. In response, the Uzbek government should bring its human rights…
News
(Tashkent, May 21, 2004) — A new torture death of a man in police custody in Uzbekistan on Tuesday is the fifth such death documented by Human Rights Watch since May 2003, when the United States last certified the country was making sufficient progress in…
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Decision to Cut Investment Over Rights Abuses Welcomed

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has correctly decided to limit its investment in Uzbekistan over the lack of progress in human rights, Human Rights Watch said today. The EBRD's Board of Directors took its unprecedented decision…
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Uzbek Failure to Meet Bank’s Benchmarks on Rights Must Carry Consequences

(London, March 23, 2004)—The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development should suspend all public-sector lending to Uzbekistan until the Uzbek government makes real progress toward meeting the EBRD’s human rights benchmarks, Human Rights Watch said…
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Action Against Civil Society Group Reflects Another Setback on EBRD Benchmarks

The Uzbek government refused to allow a civil society group to hold a conference on the death penalty in Tashkent yesterday, Human Rights Watch said. “Once again, the Uzbek government has revealed its hostility toward nongovernmental organizations,” said…
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Uzbekistan has made no real progress toward meeting the human rights benchmarks set by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development in its current country strategy for Uzbekistan, Human Rights Watch said today. In a new fact sheet, Human Rights…
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Harassment of Opposition Increasing

The Uzbek government has effectively blocked the Erk Democratic Party from holding its congress in Tashkent and has increased persecution of the opposition party’s members, Human Rights Watch said today. Government authorities failed to respond to the…
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Aftermath of Annual Meeting Marked by Setbacks to Human Rights

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) should use its upcoming visit to Tashkent to reaffirm its demands for reforms required by the Uzbek government, Human Rights Watch said today. In a letter and fact sheet submitted to the EBRD in…
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Tashkent Must Meet Benchmarks

The Uzbek government should make urgent progress in meeting the specific benchmarks in human rights set by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) in its new country strategy for Uzbekistan, Human Rights Watch said today. “The Bank has…