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UN, Donors Should Urge Protection, Freedom of Movement on Bhasan Char

(New York) – The Bangladesh government has relocated nearly 20,000 Rohingya refugees to a remote island without adequate health care, livelihoods, or protection, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The United Nations and donor…
An elderly man carries luggage over his head as he walks he off a ship
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Free Expression Under Serious Threat

(New York) – The Bangladesh government’s increasingly violent crackdown on media freedom is of urgent concern on World Press Freedom Day, nine nongovernmental organizations said in a letter today to Michelle Bachelet, the United Nations High…
Journalists work in front of a Covid-19 Hospital in Dhaka, Bangladesh on April 20, 2021. 
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Investigate Security Force Beatings for Attempting to Flee Bhasan Char Island

(New York) – Bangladesh authorities should immediately investigate allegations that security forces beat and arbitrarily detained Rohingya refugees who tried to leave Bhasan Char island, Human Rights Watch said today. The Bangladesh government has…
Rohingya refugees headed to the Bhasan Char island prepare to board navy vessels from the south eastern port city of Chattogram, Bangladesh on Feb.15,2021. © 2021 AP Photo
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Held in Pretrial Detention After Criticizing Government

(New York) – Bangladesh authorities should conduct a transparent and independent investigation into the circumstances of Mushtaq Ahmed’s death in custody, Human Rights Watch said today. Ahmed, a writer, died in prison on February 25, 2021, after being…
Activists and students demonstrate against writer Mushtaq Ahmed’s death in police custody, Dhaka, Bangladesh, February 26, 2021.
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Transfers Need Independent Assessment, Refugees’ Informed Consent

(New York) – The Bangladesh government should immediately halt imminent relocations of Rohingya refugees to remote Bhasan Char island, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities have reportedly prepared a list of 4,000 Rohingya refugees to be…
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Mandated Use of Covid-19 Tracking App Leaves People Trapped

(Kyiv) – Dozens of people are stranded in a “gray zone” between the warring parties in eastern Ukraine, unable to cross the line separating areas controlled by the government from those controlled by Russia-backed armed groups, Human Rights Watch said…
People queue before leaving the territory of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic and crossing a separation line with Ukraine at a checkpoint, which was temporary closed due to the Covid-19 outbreak and then reopened, in Donetsk Region, Ukraine. June 22, 2020.
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Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Pakistan Should Allow Free Flow of Information

(Geneva) – The World Health Organization (WHO) should press four governments that have shut down the internet to minority populations during the Covid-19 crisis to restore internet access, Human Rights Watch and 47 other organizations…
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Boat People Face Cyclones, Flooding on Bhasan Char

(New York) – Bangladesh authorities have quarantined 29 Rohingya refugees without adequate access to aid on an unstable silt island in the Bay of Bengal, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities said that they…
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Refugee Camp Restrictions Threaten ‘Critical Services’

(Bangkok) – The Bangladesh government’s new Covid-19 restrictions on access to aid put Rohingya refugees at greater risk, Human Rights Watch said today. The lockdown measures cut humanitarian workers in refugee camps by 80 percent and put the…
Rohingya refugees place empty jars in a line while waiting to collect water in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh on April, 20, 2020.
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Authorities Close Crossing Points in Eastern Ukraine Due to COVID-19

(Kyiv) – Ukrainian authorities, in response to the threat of COVID-19, shut down all movement across the line of contact in eastern Ukraine, but they have not made adequate provisions for those who may be stranded as a result, Human…
Прикордонники на КПВВ «Гнутове» неподалік від Маріуполя. Україна.
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Companies Canceling Orders, Adding to Job Loss, Unpaid Wages

  (London) – Apparel brands’ business practices in response to COVID-19 are exacerbating the economic plight of millions of garment workers in Asia, Human Rights Watch said today. Scores of clothing brands and retailers have canceled…
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Academics, Critics Apparently Targeted in Violation of Free Speech Rights

(New York) – The Bangladesh government appears to be cracking down on free speech as COVID-19 hits the country, silencing those who express concern over the government’s handling of the epidemic, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities…
Police members wear protective equipment as they patrol the streets during the nationwide lockdown as a preventive measure against the Coronavirus outbreak, in Dhaka, Bangladesh, March 2, 2020.
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Blocking Access Could Cost Lives

UPDATE: Ethiopia announced that it would restore phone and internet service to western Oromia after a three-month shutdown. (New York) – Intentionally shutting down or restricting access to the internet violates multiple rights and can be…
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Urgently Act to Prevent COVID-19 Outbreak in Refugee Camps

(New York) – The Bangladesh government’s internet blackout and phone restrictions at Rohingya refugee camps are obstructing humanitarian groups from addressing the COVID-19 threat, Human Rights Watch said today. The shutdown is risking the health…
Rohingya refugees wait at a crowded relief distribution point at the Kutupalong refugee camp in Ukhia, Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, March 24, 2020.
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Ease Hardship on Older People in Conflict Areas

(Kyiv) – Ukraine’s new government should intensify efforts to protect the rights of older Ukrainians living in nongovernment-controlled areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions, Human Rights Watch said in a letter to President Volodymyr…
An older man with a disability sits on an old luggage cart preparing to cross the Stanitsa Luhanska border point in Eastern Ukraine.
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Refugees Awaiting Future Return to Myanmar Need Safer Camps

(Bangkok) – The Bangladeshi government should relocate Rohingya refugees living in a severely overcrowded mega camp to safer ground in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, Human Rights Watch said in a report issued today. The refugees, who fled the…
A Rohingya refugee camp in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, September 19, 2017.
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Two Years Later, Victims No Closer to Remedy

(Kyiv) – Victims of arbitrary detention in government-controlled secret prisons in eastern Ukraine face new, serious obstacles to justice, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International said today. At least five detainees held…
© 2016 Human Rights Watch cover illustration with two men tied up
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New Eyewitness Accounts Show Systematic Attacks Based on Ethnicity, Religion

(New York) – Burmese government forces committed rape and other sexual violence against ethnic Rohingya women and girls as young as 13 during security operations in northern Rakhine State in late 2016, Human Rights Watch said today. The Burmese government…
A Rohingya Muslim woman walks at the Kutupalong refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, on February 4, 2017.
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20 Years After Discovery, Failing Government Response

(Dhaka, April 6, 2016) – The Bangladesh government is failing to adequately respond to naturally occurring arsenic in drinking water across large areas of rural Bangladesh, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Approximately 20 years after…
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Hostilities Down, but Civilians Remain at Risk

(Berlin) – The armed conflict in Eastern Ukraine is taking a terrible toll on civilians, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2016. The September 2015 ceasefire has significantly reduced hostilities, during which violations of…