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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 continue…
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Opposition to Withdrawal by States

The African Union made headlines Tuesday for purportedly agreeing to mass withdrawal from the International Criminal Court. The reality is more complex.
 
 The decision by AU member states welcomes the announced withdrawals by South Africa,…
A general view shows the headquarters of the African Union (AU) building in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, January 29, 2017.
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Latest Move Shows Government’s Disregard for Victims

(Nairobi) – Burundi has taken a major step backward by officially withdrawing from the International Criminal Court, Human Rights Watch said today. Other African ICC members should distance themselves from Burundi’s withdrawal and affirm their support for…
Residents outside their houses in Nyakabiga, in the Burundian capital Bujumbura, look at the body of a man shot dead on December 11, 2015.
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Bill to ‘Protect’ Children Would Violate Their Rights

(Berlin) – The Moldovan parliament should reject a bill to introduce discriminatory anti-gay “propaganda” clauses in national law, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to lawmakers. The bill is similar to those proposed in other countries in recent…
©2016 Maxim Andreev for GENDERDOC-M. Demonstrators protest in opposition to an LGBT pride march held in Moldova in May 2016.
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Draft Law on Amending and Completing the Code of Administrative Offences and the Law on the Rights of a Child

June 20, 2016
 
 Dear MP:
 
 We are writing to ask you to ensure that a discriminatory anti-LGBT “propaganda” bill currently before Parliament is withdrawn or rejected and does not become law. On April 28, 2016, members of parliament…
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There’s a new fashion among African presidents bent on clinging to power: the constitutional coup. Military coups are no longer de rigueur, in part because the African Union has said it won’t recognize governments that come to power by means of such…
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Forced Return Could Lead to Torture, Ill-Treatment

(Berlin) – The government of Moldova should ensure that Tajik opposition activist Sobir Valiev is not extradited or otherwise returned to Tajikistan, where he faces possible torture or ill-treatment, Human Rights Watch said today. Sobir Valiev, deputy…
2015_August_Tajikistan_Sobir_Valiev
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2013 brought many grim setbacks, yet there were still some important signs of progress

With the slaughter of civilians in Syria still horribly unrestrained, it is easy to be discouraged about human rights. There is, of course, every reason for outrage about Syria, and about the international community's narrow focus on peace talks, unlikely…
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Human Rights Watch's Alison Des Forges Award celebrates the valor of individuals who put their lives on the line to protect the dignity and rights of others. Human Rights Watch collaborates with these courageous activists to create a world in which people…
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The U.N. Human Rights Council recently passed a resolution on “traditional values of humankind” as a vehicle for “promoting human rights and fundamental freedoms.” It sounds innocuous, but its implications are ominous. Indeed, it is an immediate threat to…
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The State Department’s new list of governments using child soldiers is out. Seven countries are named this year. The list is not that surprising: It includes the Democratic Republic of Congo, Burma and South Sudan, which have deployed child soldiers for…
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Joseph Kony, Thomas Lubanga and Charles Taylor are just the tip of the iceberg. The use of children as soldiers extends far beyond Africa. Last week in The Hague, the International Criminal Court, or ICC, found the Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga guilty…
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A Victory for Congo's Children

Yesterday in The Hague, the International Criminal Court (ICC) found the Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga guilty of recruiting and using child soldiers under age 15 in the Democratic Republic of Congo, making him the ICC’s first convicted war criminal.…
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Law Should Cover Gender Identity

(Amsterdam) – The Moldovan government’s draft anti-discrimination law would provide a range of important protections, but it should be broadened to include gender identity, Human Rights Watch said today. The proposed law, which would provide protection on…
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Convention to Become Binding International Law on August 1

(Washington, DC) - Burkina Faso and Moldova ratified the convention banning cluster munitions on February 16, 2010, the final two ratifications needed for it to become binding international law. The convention will now enter into force on August 1, 2010.…
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Measure to Prosecute Recruiters Abroad Puts Commanders on Notice

(New York) - Under a new law signed today by US President George W. Bush, leaders of military forces and armed groups who have recruited child soldiers may be arrested and prosecuted in the United States, Human Rights Watch said today. The law could apply…