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  Summary In 2017, a US Border Patrol agent kneed a woman in the lower pelvis, leaving bruises and pain days later, according to her statement to a government official screening her asylum claim. In a separate incident that year, a Border…
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UN Agencies, Governments Should Improve Assistance to Afghans at Risk

(New York) – Afghans at risk who have fled or are seeking to flee Afghanistan need greater international support, Human Rights Watch said today in a new policy briefing paper. The United Nations system and concerned governments should improve their…
Afghans from northern provinces who fled their homes due to the fighting between the Taliban and Afghan security forces take refuge in a public parc in Kabul, August 13, 2021. 
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Summary Syria is a death country, a kidnapping country. Anyone coming back will lose their money or their life. — Salam, 26, from al-Jeza in Daraa Syrian refugees who voluntarily returned to Syria between 2017 and 2021 from Lebanon and Jordan…
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(Beirut) – Syrian refugees who returned to Syria between 2017 and 2021 from Lebanon and Jordan faced grave human rights abuses and persecution at the hands of the Syrian government and affiliated militias, Human Rights Watch…
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Struggle to Survive Amid Devastation, Property Destruction

(Beirut) – Syrian refugees who returned to Syria between 2017 and 2021 from Lebanon and Jordan faced grave human rights abuses and persecution at the hands of the Syrian government and affiliated militias, Human Rights Watch said in a report released…
A streetview of destroyed buildings in a city
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Fewer Than 12,000 Admitted; More Than 51,000 Places Unfilled

When US President Donald Trump announced an annual refugee admissions ceiling of 15,000 for fiscal year 2021 (FY21), outraged refugee rights advocates lamented the wholesale dismantling of a program that had rescued millions of refugees since the 1975…
Abdisellam Hassen Ahmed, a Somali refugee who had been stuck in limbo after President Donald Trump temporarily banned refugee entries, walks with his wife Nimo Hashi, and his 2-year-old daughter, Taslim, who he met for the first time after arriving at Salt Lake City International Airport, February 10, 2017.
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Killing of Mohib Ullah Exposes Grave Gaps in Camp Safety

(New York) – Bangladesh authorities and United Nations officials should take urgent measures to protect Rohingya refugees facing threats and violence in the Cox’s Bazar camps, Human Rights Watch said today. Rohingya community leaders and volunteer…
Mohibullah in Cox's Bazar
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Expulsions Violate Asylum Rights and Refugee Laws; Inflict Cruelty on Black, Brown, and Indigenous Immigrant Communities

President Joe Biden The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW Washington, DC 20500 September 21, 2021 Dear President Biden, As leaders of civil rights and human rights organizations, we write at an inflection point for your Administration’s…
Two Customs and Border Protection agents on horseback approach three Haitian migrants standing in the river. The migrants are holding bags and shoes.
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Chased by Border Agents on Horseback; Returned to Danger in Haiti

(Washington, DC) – The US deployment of border agents on horseback against Haitian migrants on September 19, 2021, stems from abusive and racially discriminatory immigration policies by the administration of President Joe Biden, Human Rights Watch…
Two Customs and Border Protection agents on horseback approach three Haitian migrants standing in the river. The migrants are holding bags and shoes.
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Recognize Status for Afghans Waiting on US Bases

United States President Joe Biden inherited a refugee resettlement program on life support after the administration of former President Donald Trump decimated it. Biden promised to resuscitate the program and raised the refugee admissions ceiling to…
A man walks with a child through Doña Ana Village in Fort Bliss, where Afghan refugees are being housed, in New Mexico on September 10, 2021.
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Abandon Deterrence Model for Immigrants, Asylum Seekers, Groups Urge

(Washington, DC) – Extreme heat in the United States in the summer of 2021 underscores the urgency of adopting a climate-informed approach to policies affecting border communities, migrants, and asylum seekers, a group of 68 rights organizations said…
Alyssa Quintanilla, part of the Tucson Samaritans volunteer group, carries a cross, May 18, 2021, to be installed near Three Points, Arizona. The cross will be installed in the desert to commemorate the death of a migrant there. 
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New Law Prohibits Nearly All Abortion Essentially After Six Weeks of Pregnancy

The US state of Texas and the United States Supreme Court dealt a severe blow to women’s (and pregnant people’s) human rights last week. Dozens of US states have been passing destructive laws limiting abortion access for years, but courts usually…
Protesters march from City Hall to the federal courthouse in protest of the new state abortion law in Houston, Texas on September 5th, 2021.
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Biden Administration Should Maintain Course to End ‘Remain in Mexico’ Program

(Washington, DC) – The Biden administration should take necessary legal measures to end an abusive Trump-era border policy following the August 24, 2021, US Supreme Court ruling upholding the program, Human Rights Watch said today. The court affirmed…
Woman stands in profile with in a doorframe, her face is obscured
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Administration Must Direct Immediate Actions to Uphold US Refugee Law and Treaty Obligations

August 6, 2021 Honorable Joseph R. Biden, Jr. President of the United States White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Washington, DC 20500 Dear President Biden: As the world marks the 70th anniversary of the Refugee Convention, our 178 faith-…
Migrants seeking asylum wait in line with their case paperwork to meet with an attorney on Oct. 5, 2019, during a weekly trip by volunteers, lawyers, paralegals and interpreters to the migrant campsite outside El Puente Nuevo in Matamoros, Mexico.
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Crowded Camp Conditions, Lack of Permanent Shelters

Heavy rains over the past week have displaced more than 21,000 Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh. The resulting flooding and mudslides have destroyed about 6,418 shelters. With months of monsoon season still ahead, the refugees face heightened risks…
Rohingya refugees repair a shelter damaged following heavy rains at the refugee camp in Kutupalong, Bangladesh on July 28, 2021.
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Delayed Reforms Endanger LGBT, Black, Other Adults Traveling Alone

“The officials didn’t let me tell them anything. They just sent me back.” That’s what “Dolores,” an asylum seeker in Mexico, told me after United States Border Patrol agents expelled her under the illegal and discriminatory Title 42 border…
Honduran men cross into the United States to begin the asylum process Monday, July 5, 2021, in Tijuana, Mexico. The administration of President Joe Biden continues to turn away thousands of asylum seekers under the illegal and discriminatory Title 42 summary expulsion policy.
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Just as largely unprecedented mass street protests erupted on the streets in Cuba [“In the streets, Cubans ‘have lost their fear’, ” front page, July 13], the Coast Guard’s interdiction of a boat off the coast of Key West and summary return of Cubans…
A Coast Guard Station Marathon boat crew and 15 migrants aboard 45-foot Response Boat-Medium near Big Pine Key, Florida on July 3, 2021. Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Ryan Estrada. Source: United States Coast Guard