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Re: Protecting Human Rights in Australia’s Foreign Policy

Dear Minister Payne,
 
 Congratulations on your reappointment as foreign minister. Human Rights Watch looks forward to working with you to make protection of human rights a strong pillar of Australia’s foreign policy.
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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. “
Video
A new video from Human Rights Watch highlights ongoing abuses ahead of the fifth anniversary of the Australian government’s reintroduction of its offshore processing and settlement policy. Under this policy, people seeking asylum who travel by boat are…
News

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…
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 continue…
News

UN Expert Body Calls for Regional Processing Centers to Close

This week, the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights reviewed Australia’s asylum policy. Once again, Australia’s officials were both disingenuous and unconvincing in their appearance before the committee, which monitors state…
A protester from the Refugee Action Coalition holds a placard during a demonstration outside the offices of the Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection in Sydney, Australia, April 29, 2016.
News
Children across New Zealand are back in school for the new academic year, and many will be looking forward to studying, playing sport, and maybe singing in the school choir.
 
 This isn't the case for many children around the world who are denied…
Children sent to Nauru by Australia for “offshore processing,” August 2016. Parents and children reported that students from families of refugees and asylum seekers are frequently bullied by Nauruan students.
News
It’s no surprise that US President Donald Trump would suggest rethinking the refugee deal the Australian government struck with the Obama administration in November. It may indeed go ahead—although the president criticized it, his press secretary said on…
Held by Australia on Nauru for three years, a refugee girl chooses freedom as what she most needs, August 2016.
News

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.