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Address Abuse of Child Athletes, LGBT Discrimination, Gender Gap

(Tokyo) – Japan should address serious rights issues in the country as host of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, Human Rights Watch said today in a new reporters’ guide. The Tokyo 2020 Summer Games, which start on July 23, 2021, are…
Supporters of Equality Act Japan gather in front of parliament before they submit a petition in Tokyo on March 25, 2021.
News

80th pre-session

Protection of Education from Attack (Article 28) In its 2017 concluding observations on Bhutan’s report under the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict, this Committee “…
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
All over the world, gold and diamond mining are risky operations, and sometimes people and the environment are harmed in the process. For over a decade, Human Rights Watch has documented child labor, environmental destruction, and violence by government…
A pearl necklace is displayed over a gray sign that reads "Mikimoto"
News

Trip Covers Papua New Guinea, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar

(Tokyo) – Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi should forcefully raise human rights concerns on an upcoming regional trip, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to the foreign minister. Motegi will visit Papua New Guinea, Cambodia, Laos,…
Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi meets the media in Tokyo on May 28, 2020. 
News

Host of 2021 Summer Games Should Undertake Urgent Systemic Reforms

(Tokyo) – Child athletes in Japan suffer physical, sexual, and verbal abuse when training for sport, Human Rights Watch said in a new report, released today, that documents depression, suicides, physical disabilities, and lifelong trauma resulting…
Soccer player holding ball in front of Olympic rings
Report
Summary I was hit so many times, I can’t count ... we were all called to the coach and I was hit in the face in front of everyone. I was bleeding, but he did not stop hitting me. I did say that my nose was bleeding, but he did not stop. — Daiki…
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

Bill Would Make 18 Minimum Marriage Age for Women and Men

In the global push to end child marriage, Japan looks set to join the movement. A proposed revision of Japan’s Civil Code would set the minimum age of marriage at 18 for both women and men. At present, people must be 20 years…
A bride in traditional Japanese wedding attire poses for photos with her groom at the Itsukushima Shrine in Hatsukaichi, southwestern Japan April 16, 2008.
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
A revolution was said to take place in the alternative care industry for children in Japan on August 2 when the Ministry of Health, Labor announced its new vision for such care. The vision is of high quality care with the children’s best interest at its…
News

Involve Courts to Avoid Hasty Family Separation

Yui is an 8-year-old girl who loves her mother. However, her mother has become dependent on alcohol, and when she drinks she cuts herself in front of Yui. She never hurts Yui, whose name I have changed to protect her privacy, but sometimes she…
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
Japan’s longtime focus on providing foreign assistance for maternal and child health has contributed to fewer mothers around the world dying during pregnancy and childbirth. This is a fact worth celebrating prior to International Women’s Day, March 8.…
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