Search Results

News

Many Excluded from Running, Voting in First Legislative Elections

(Beirut) – New laws approved in late July 2021 to regulate Qatar’s first legislative elections will effectively disenfranchise thousands of Qataris from voting or running, Human Rights Watch said today. The new laws highlight the country’s…
A Qatari candidate registers to run in the country's upcoming election as a member of its top advisory panel, known as the Shura Council, in the capital Doha, on August 22, 2021.
News

Human Rights Watch Introduces Country Index Based on Laws, Policies

(Beirut) – Governments in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) should outlaw the violent discipline of children, Human Rights Watch said today, introducing an index categorizing countries in the region based on their laws and policies. The MENA…
2020 Dadu Shin for Human Rights Watch
News

Discriminatory Restrictions Affect Independence to Marry, Study, Work, Travel

(Beirut, March 29, 2021) – Qatar’s discriminatory male guardianship system denies women the right to make many key decisions about their lives, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The 94-page report, “‘Everything I Have to Do is…
Women fly a kite in a park next to a body of water
News

Migrant Workers’ Rights Ignored During Covid-19 Pandemic

(Bangkok) – Singapore’s government further restricted free expression and peaceful assembly in the city-state in 2020, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2021. The authorities used harsh and overly broad laws to prosecute speech…
202012asia_singapore_wr
News

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.
News

Jailing of Jolovan Wham Violates Right to Peaceful Assembly

(Bangkok) – Singapore authorities should immediately quash the conviction of the human rights activist Jolovan Wham in violation of his right to peaceful assembly, Human Rights Watch said today. On August 20, 2020, the Court of Appeal upheld the…
202008asia_singapore_jolovan_wham
News

As World Cup Draws Closer, Government Yet to Meet Key Reform Promises

(Beirut) – Qatari authorities’ efforts to protect migrant workers’ right to accurate and timely wages have largely proven unsuccessful, Human Rights Watch said in a report and an accompanying video released today. Despite a handful of reforms in…
Migrant workers in Qatar represent about 95 per cent of the country’s labor force. These workers are building the country’s infrastructure, hotels, and stadiums, and powering its service sector. 
News

Overcrowding, Unsanitary Conditions Threaten Further Spread

UPDATE: On May 19, 2020, in response to this report, Qatar’s Government Communications Office (GCO) issued a statement confirming the presence of the virus in its central jail. Denying prisoner statements referenced in Human Rights…
Doha Skyline, Qatar.
News
(Beirut) – Human Rights Watch joined 28 other organizations today in issuing this statement about the need to unblock Voice Over IP platforms for voice and video internet calls: In light of the COVID-19 global pandemic outbreak, we, the…
202004mena_gulf_VoIP
News

Unwarranted Amid Health Risks, Global Travel Restrictions

(Beirut) – People in immigration detention in Gulf countries pending deportation should be given alternatives to detention amid health risks and global travel restrictions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, Human Rights Watch said today.…
A worker rests at his accommodation in Qadisiya labor camp, Saudi Arabia August 17, 2016.
News

Positive Steps but Additional Measures Needed

  (Beirut) –  Qatari authorities should ensure that migrant workers receive adequate protection during the COVID-19 pandemic, a coalition of 16 nongovernmental organizations and trade unions said in a letter on March 31, 2020…
Logos of civil society organizations and trade unions.
News

Months of Delayed Wages on World Cup-Related Sites

  (New York) – Qatari authorities failed to address an employer’s months of delayed wages to employees despite a 2015 system built to ensure employers paid their employees on time and in full, Human Rights Watch said today. The…
Workers walk towards the construction site of the Lusail stadium which will be build for the upcoming 2022 Fifa soccer World Cup during a stadium tour in Doha, Qatar, December 20, 2019.
News

Penal Code Amendments a Setback for Freedom of Expression

(Beirut) – Qatar has amended its penal code to restrict further the already-narrow space for free expression by setting criminal penalties for spreading “fake news” online, Human Rights Watch said today. The amendment, introduced…
An image of the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani on a building in Doha, Qatar.
News

But Domestic Workers Will Have to Notify Employers Before Leaving

  (Beirut)—Qatar announced on January 16, 2020 that most migrant workers previously prevented from leaving the country without their employer’s permission, including domestic workers, will no longer need an exit permit, Human Rights Watch…
A picture taken on December 4, 2018, shows workers at the Al-Bayt Stadium in Al-Khor, a city in northeastern Qatar. © 2018 David Harding/AFP
News

Migrants, Asylum Seekers, Stateless People Remain Vulnerable

(Beirut) – Migrant workers, asylum seekers, stateless people, and women in Qatar remained susceptible to abuse in 2019 despite new laws and regulations aimed at better protecting human rights, Human Rights Watch said today in its World…
Workers in Katara cultural heritage village in Doha, Qatar.
News

New ‘Online Falsehoods’ Law Further Curbs Rights

(Bangkok) – Singapore’s government placed greater restrictions on the country’s already sharply curtailed free expression rights in 2019, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2020.  The Protection from Online…
Participants of Pink Dot, an annual event organized in support of the LGBT community, call for the repeal of Section 377A of Singapore’s Penal Code, June 29, 2019.
News

Medical Research Concludes Heatstroke Likely Cause

  UPDATE:   In response to this press release, Qatar’s Government Communications Office stated on October 10 that labor inspectors shut down 300 work sites for violating the existing regulations…
A foreign worker climbs scaffolding at the Al-Wakra Stadium that is under construction for the 2022 World Cup, in Doha, Qatar.
News

Defy Ban Under Labor Law

  (Beirut) – Hundreds of migrant workers in Qatar went on strike this week to protest what they say are poor working conditions, unpaid and delayed wages, and threats of reduced wages, Human Rights…
Workers leave their construction sites
News

Human Rights Council Seat Demands Greater Leadership

(Sydney) – The Australian government should make the protection of human rights a central focus of its foreign policy, Human Rights Watch said in a letter to the recently reappointed Foreign Minister Marise Payne that was released today. …
201906asia_australia_marise_payne
News

Proposed Law Would Excessively Restrict Online Freedom of Speech

(New York) – Singapore’s proposed law on “online falsehoods” is sweepingly broad and threatens to stifle discussion on websites worldwide, Human Rights Watch said today. The government should withdraw the Protection from Online Falsehoods and…
Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong speaks during a press conference following the 33rd ASEAN summit in Singapore, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018.