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Set Principled Framework for Aid, Protection, Justice

(Brussels) – The European Union-United Nations sponsored aid conference for Syria on March 29-30, 2021, should prioritize a rights-respecting aid framework that advances urgent protection, humanitarian, and accountability needs, Human Rights Watch…
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(Beirut) – Lawless armed conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) morphed into disastrous trends for the region in 2017, Human Rights Watch said today in releasing its 2018 World Report. “Failed leadership, failed…
Smoke billows behind a building in the Yemeni capital Sanaa on December 3, 2017, during clashes between Houthi rebels and supporters of Yemeni ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh. © 2017 Getty Images
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UN General Assembly Should Organize Emergency Special Session

(New York) – The Russian-Syrian coalition committed war crimes during a month-long aerial bombing campaign of opposition-controlled territory in Aleppo in September and October 2016. The Violations Documentation Center…
Ruins of a residential house that was struck in an aerial attack, killing at least 24 civilians, on September 27, 2016.
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ISIS Placing Fighters in Medical Facilities

(Beirut) – An airstrike targeting Islamic State, also known as ISIS, fighters hit a clinic south of Mosul on October 18, 2016, Human Rights Watch said today. The attack destroyed half the clinic, killed eight civilians, and wounded at least two more.…
Smoke from U.S.-led coalition airstrikes against ISIS in a village east of Mosul, Iraq, May 2016.
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Warring Parties Should Prioritize Protecting Civilians

(New York) – An attack on a United Nations aid convoy and on a Red Crescent warehouse in Aleppo should be investigated as possible war crimes. The apparent airstrikes on September 19, 2016, hit the convoy and building for over three hours with no military…
Damaged medical supplies after an airstrike on Urm al-Kubra town, western Aleppo city, Syria September 20, 2016
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UN Should Build Case to Prosecute

(New York) – Syrian and Russian military attacks on hospitals in recent weeks during the government air campaign in the Aleppo region are causing deaths and injuries and shutting down medical facilities. The United Nations Security Council should ask the…
Men and civil defence members look for survivors after an airstrike on a hospital in the town of Meles, western Idlib city in opposition armed forces-held Idlib province, Syria on August 6, 2016.
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Investigate Government Command Responsibility; ISIS Stops Civilians From Fleeing

(Beirut) – The announced investigation into allegations of abuse of civilians around Fallujah by Iraqi government forces is a test for the government’s ability to hold abusive forces accountable. Judicial officials should conduct this investigation…
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ISIS Claims Responsibility for Attacks on Latakia Bus Stations, Hospital

(New York) – A series of car bombings and suicide attacks targeting civilian bus stations and a hospital in Syrian government-controlled areas on May 23, 2016, would appear to constitute war crimes, Human Rights Watch said today. The ISIS news agency Amaq…
People inspect the damage after explosions hit the Syrian city of Tartous, in this handout picture provided by the Syrian Arab News Agency on May 23, 2016.
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UN Security Council Should Enforce Resolution 2254

(New York) – Deadly airstrikes on a hospital and a clinic in Aleppo show a disregard for civilian life and may amount to war crimes.    An airstrike on April 27, 2016, that hit al-Quds Hospital and…
A view shows the damage at al-Quds hospital after it was hit by airstrikes, in a rebel-held area of Syria's Aleppo.
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Government Defying UN Resolution

(New York) – The Syrian government has carried out hundreds of new indiscriminate attacks over the past year with air-delivered munitions, including improvised weapons such as barrel bombs. The attacks have had a devastating impact on civilians, killing…
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Barrel Bombs Hit Residential Areas

(Baghdad) – Iraqi government forces battling armed groups in the western province of Anbar since January 2014 have repeatedly struck Fallujah General Hospital with mortar shells and other munitions, Human Rights Watch said today. The recurring strikes on…
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Security Forces Also Attacked Women and Girls in Raids on Homes

(New York) – Syrian government forces have used sexual violence to torture men, women, and boys detained during the current conflict. Witnesses and victims also told Human Rights Watch that soldiers and pro-government armed militias have sexually abused…
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Interfere in Work of Red Crescent in Homs

(New York) – Syrian security forces forcibly removed 18 wounded people from al-Barr hospital in the central city of Homs on September 7, 2011, including five from the operating room, Human Rights Watch said today, based on reports from witnesses,…
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Proposed Law Would Violate Rights, Endanger Women’s Lives

(Warsaw) – The Polish parliament should reject the proposed absolute ban on abortion that is up for a vote on August 31, 2011, Human Rights Watch said today. The draft bill, “On the Protection of Human Life from the Moment of Conception,” would impose an…
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Bill Shows Commitment to End Violence Against Women

(Beirut) - A Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) law that bans female genital mutilation (FGM) is a crucial step in eradicating the practice, Human Rights Watch said today. The Family Violence Bill, approved by the Kurdistan parliament on June 21, 2011,…
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The Kurdistan Islamic Scholars Union, the highest Muslim authority in Iraqi Kurdistan for religious pronouncements and rulings, issued a fatwa or religious edict last month. This would not have been particularly newsworthy, except that this particular…
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Edict Says Female Genital Mutilation not Prescribed by Islam but Doesn’t Ban It

(Beirut) - A religious edict  by the Kurdistan Islamic Scholars Union on female genital mutilation (FGM) sends a clear signal that the practice is not prescribed by Islam, Human Rights Watch said today. The edict, however, does not call for an outright…