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New President Lazarus Chakwera Provides Opportunity for Reform

(Johannesburg) – Malawi’s new president, Lazarus Chakwera, should use his electoral victory as an opportunity to reset the country’s human rights record. On June 28, 2020, Chakwera was sworn in as president following a rerun vote on June 23, in which…
Malawi's newly elected President Lazarus Chakwera takes the oath of office in Lilongwe, Malawi, Sunday June 28, 2020.
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Safeguard Citizens Against Violence During Presidential Rerun Vote

(Johannesburg) – Malawi authorities should ensure a free and fair, as well as safe, vote during upcoming presidential rerun elections amid the Covid-19 pandemic. On May 8, 2020, the country’s Supreme Court upheld the Constitutional…
Opposition Malawi Congress Party leader Lazarus Chakwera addresses supporters after a court annulled the May 2019 presidential vote that declared Peter Mutharika a winner, in Lilongwe, Malawi, February 4, 2020. REUTERS/Eldson Chagara
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An ongoing legal case in London could provide the impetus for significant reforms to improve human rights protections for workers in the garment industry. The UK legal action doesn’t relate directly to clothing companies, but it sounds a warning that…
Women Garment Industry
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Inspiring story of #Malawi musician and albinism activist, Lazarus.  
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New Momentum for African LGBT Movements

(Johannesburg) – The High Court in Botswana ruled on June 11, 2019 that laws criminalizing consensual same-sex relations were unconstitutional, Human Rights Watch said today. The ruling upheld the rights of the country’s lesbian, gay,…
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(Banjul, October 26, 2018) – Malawi’s laws prohibiting consensual same-sex relations foster a climate of fear and fuel violence and discrimination, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The punitive legal environment combined with social…
News

Repeal Laws; Moratorium Not Enough

  (Banjul, October 26, 2018) – Malawi’s laws prohibiting consensual same-sex relations foster a climate of fear and fuel violence and discrimination, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The…
A young transgender woman at a friend’s house seeking temporary shelter in Lilongwe, Malawi.
Report
  Summary They [police] started slapping and punching me, forcing me to confess that I am “gay.” The beating lasted for more than an hour. —Olivia, 19-year-old transgender woman, May 2018, Lilongwe In…
News
A new treaty to deepen the link between environmental protection and human rights in Latin America and the Caribbean has the potential to reduce the conflicts that lead to the murders of so many environmental defenders in the region.  The…
Bernardo, a man in his 30s, was born in a quilombo (Afro-Brazilian) community of around 60, men, women, and children in Minas Gerais State, southeast Brazil. Bernardo told Human Rights Watch that he feels powerless against aerial spraying of pesticides. “
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Human Rights Watch letter to Minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa on Venezuela’s Crisis

Dear Minister Nin Novoa, I am writing to respectfully urge you to adhere to the joint statement on Venezuela’s crisis delivered by Peru on July 6, 2018, at the United Nations Human Rights Council. The statement, which was a regional initiative…
News

Entitled to Consultation on Communal Ownership

  (Washington, DC) – A draft law before the Antigua and Barbuda Senate would deprive Barbudans of communal land where they have lived for generations, Human Rights Watch said today. The Antigua and Barbuda government should consult with the…
201807wrd_americas_barbuda
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African Governments Should Ensure Right to Education

  (Nairobi) - Tens of thousands of pregnant girls and adolescent mothers are banned or discouraged from attending school across Africa, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today, ahead of the Day of the African Child…
Students enrolled in the final year of lower secondary school in the classroom in a village in Kolda region, southern Senegal. Adolescent mothers and married girls study in this school.
Report
Summary When the head teacher found out that I was pregnant, he called me to his office and told me, “You have to leave our school immediately because you are pregnant.” —Jamida K., Kahama, Tanzania, April 2014 We don’t allow pregnant girls to…
News

Provide Information, Protect Livelihoods When Mines Move In

  Information is key to protecting the health and the livelihoods of people in areas affected by economic development. And that is why a 10 percent cut in the Malawi Human Rights Commission's budget announced recently is such bad news. The…
Mining machinery left behind at Eland coal mine at Mwabulambo after closure in 2015.
Report
Summary Every day I fear for my safety living in this country because of my sexual orientation. I am alive but if anyone ever find out and wanted to find out, they can kill me …I am an easy target for anything. —Peter, Dominica,…
News

Repeal Colonial-Era Laws

(Bridgetown, Barbados, March 21, 2018) – Discriminatory laws in Eastern Caribbean countries make lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people targets for discrimination, violence and abuse, Human Rights Watch said in a report…
Jason (pseudonym), a 40-year-old gay man from Barbados.
News
In a moment when some countries have stepped back on LGBT rights, a January 9th decision by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights has opened a window of opportunity for Latin America to lead the way.   In a landmark…
People celebrate after the Inter-American Court of Human Rights called on Costa Rica and Latin America to recognize equal marriage, in San Jose, Costa Rica, January 9, 2018. The sign reads: "The court said yes".