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Summit Meeting Key Opportunity to Address Vaccine Inequities

Leaders from the “Quad” countries – the United States, Japan, India, and Australia – will hold their first in-person summit in Washington, DC, on September 24, amid a global Covid-19 vaccine shortage crisis and deeply inequitable access to vaccines.…
Activists stand outside Pfizer Headquarters demanding US President Joe Biden support the "TRIPS Waiver" in New York, NY on April 22, 2021.
News

Rules Regulating Appearance Put Many Students, LGBT Teens at Risk

A recent case in Osaka, Japan, about hair color, highlights the risks of imposing social conformity. Many schools in Japan have strict policies around hair color, dress, and other appearance, and students can face harsh consequences if they fail to…
High school students wearing face masks walk in Tokyo, January 16, 2021. 
News

End Assistance to All Military-Controlled Entities

(Tokyo) – The Japanese government should immediately cancel plans to donate money to purchase vehicles and communications equipment for the Myanmar police force, Human Rights Watch said today. The police force, which operates under the auspices of the…
Myanmar border guard police officers walk along a path in Tin May village in northern Rakhine State, Myanmar, July 14, 2017.
News

Authorities Silence Health Workers, Endanger Prisoners

(Nairobi) – Burundi’s government is failing to communicate fact-based information on the Covid-19 pandemic and preventing doctors and nurses from responding adequately. The government’s response is fueling fear and rumors about the spread of…
A voter holds her identity card in her mouth as she washes her hands before casting her vote in the presidential election, in Giheta, Gitega province, Burundi, on May 20, 2020.
News

WHO Experts Expelled, Election Observers Blocked

While most of the world tries to slow the spread and limit the death toll of Covid-19, Burundi is expelling health experts. This week, the government, which refuses to acknowledge the threat the virus presents, resorted to familiar tactics and…
A rally on the first day of the ruling party’s campaign in Bugendana, Burundi, on April 27, 2020.
News

Release People at Greatest Health Risk, Minor Offenders

  (Tokyo) – The Japanese government should significantly reduce the population of jails, prisons, and other detention centers where the risk of Covid-19 spreading is high, Human Rights Watch said on April 23, 2020 in a letter to…
A prison officer stands in front of older inmates who attend slow-paced exercises in a special building set aside for prisoners unable to do regular prison factory work, at the prison in Tokushima, Japan, March 2018.
News

Unsanitary Quarantine Conditions; Aid Access Blocked

(Nairobi) – Burundian authorities risk putting people in grave danger without the free flow of fact-based information on the COVID-19 pandemic. Speaking about the country’s exposure to the virus, President Pierre Nkurunziza’s spokesperson recently…
People wash their hands as a preventive measure against COVID-19, on their arrival in Gatumba, Burundi, on the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo, on March 18, 2020.
News

Joint Open Letter on Japan’s Recent Disengagement in Addressing Human Rights Abuses in North Korea

February 13, 2020   Shinzo Abe Prime Minister of Japan Cabinet Secretariat Government of Japan 1-6-1 Nagata-cho, Chiyoda-ku Tokyo 100-8968 Japan   Re:  Joint…
News

End Discrimination in Education Against Pregnant Girls, Adolescent Mothers

African governments should ensure the right to education for all girls by ending discrimination against those who are pregnant or have children, Human Rights Watch said today ahead of the United Nations International Day of the…
Cartoon for Tanzania Education Report
News
In June, Burundi joined a small group of African countries that ban pregnant girls from continuing with formal education in government schools. Burundi’s Education Ministry  banned the boys who get the girls pregnant as well as the girls themselves…
“Harriet,” 17, from Migori county, western Kenya, dropped out of the first year of lower secondary school when she got pregnant.
News

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

Duterte Visit to Japan Should Not Be Business-as-Usual

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s upcoming visit to Japan provides senior Japanese officials a fresh opportunity to end their long silence on the Philippine government’s murderous “war on drugs.” The three-day state visit,…
201710Asia_Philippines_Japan
News

Murky Money Trail, Missed Targets, Missing Data

(Beirut) – Millions of dollars in aid money pledged to get Syrian refugee children in school last year did not reach them, arrived late, or could not be traced due to poor reporting practices, Human Rights Watch said today. The 55…
Syrian children in an informal refugee camp in the Bekaa Valley.
Report
Summary Since 2011, violence in Syria has forcibly displaced at least 1.6 million school-age children to other countries in the region. Before the conflict, more than 90 percent of Syrian children attended primary school and 70 percent…
News

At Least 10 More Years of Official Silence on LGBT Lives in Schools

The Japanese government has missed an opportunity to introduce information about sexual and gender minorities to classrooms during a once-in-a-decade review of its national educational curriculum. Instead, the government said in March that including…
manga drawing by Taiji Utagawa
News

Efforts Boost Regional, Global Role on Gay Rights

(Tokyo, March 24, 2017) – Japan’s updated national bullying prevention policy will for the first time protect sexual and gender minority students, Human Rights Watch said today. The measure will boost Japan’s reputation regionally and internationally on…
manga drawing by Taiji Utagawa of a transgender man with head down in the dark with three white spots leading into the distance
News

School Guidelines Should Address Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity

Last year, my colleagues and I interviewed sexual and gender minority youth from across Japan to learn about their experiences at school. The information we documented was harrowing: harassment and bullying colored the lives of many of the youth we met.…
manga drawing by Taiji Utagawa of a transgender man with head down in the dark with three white spots leading into the distance
News
Human Rights Watch is an independent, nongovernmental research and advocacy organization. We monitor human rights in more than 90 countries around the world, including Japan. We published a report in 2016 about access to education for lesbian, gay,…