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Free Expression, Privacy Rights Violated

A Kuwaiti court has sentenced a transgender woman to prison for “imitating the opposite sex” online, Human Rights Watch said today. Such laws violate the rights to free expression, privacy, and nondiscrimination under Kuwait’s constitution and…
Maha al-Mutairi, a 40-year-old Kuwaiti transgender woman. © 2021 Maha al-Mutairi.
News

Dozens Placed Under Arbitrary House Arrests

(Tunis) – Arbitrary and politically motivated acts of repression have proliferated in Tunisia since July 25, 2021, when President Kais Saied suspended parliament, Human Rights Watch said today. He also lifted parliamentary immunity, dismissed the head…
Tunisian President Kais Saied raises his fist to bystanders as he walks along the avenue Bourguiba in Tunis, Tunisia, August 1, 2021.
News

Governments Should Halt Trade in Surveillance Technology

(New York) – Recent reports that NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware has been used for surveillance of dozens of journalists, human rights activists, and others demonstrate the urgent need for governments to suspend the trade in surveillance technology until…
People march in Budapest, Hungary during a July 26, 2021 protest against the Hungarian government over reports that it has used Pegasus spyware.
News

A Dangerous Move Capitalizes on Popular Frustration

(Tunis) – Tunisian President Kais Saied should safeguard the human rights of all Tunisians and reverse any repressive measures taken since announcing July 25 measures that largely concentrate powers in his office, Human Rights Watch said today. On…
Kais Saied during the sworn ceremony in Bardo, Tunis, Tunisia on October 23, 2019.
News

Human Rights Watch Introduces Country Index Based on Laws, Policies

(Beirut) – Governments in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) should outlaw the violent discipline of children, Human Rights Watch said today, introducing an index categorizing countries in the region based on their laws and policies. The MENA…
2020 Dadu Shin for Human Rights Watch
News

Al-Hasani at Risk of Unfair Trial After Wrongful Deportation From Morocco

(Beirut) – Saudi officials should immediately make public the whereabouts and condition of a Saudi-Australian man forcibly returned to Saudi Arabia in March 2021, Human Rights Watch said today. No information has emerged about the situation of Osama al…
201911MENA_SaudiArabia_Repression_main
News

Ensure Humane Treatment, Due Process, Medical Care

(Tunis) – Families of women and children with ties to suspected members of the Islamic State group (ISIS) who were recently repatriated to Tunisia say that all of the women are in detention, Human Rights Watch said today. Some have faced abuse, have…
The Palace of Justice in Tunis, Tunisia, on January 29, 2019.
News

Joint Call to Moroccan Authorities

As the trial of award-winning journalist and human rights activist Omar Radi is set to begin in Morocco on April 6, 2021, the undersigned organizations call on Moroccan authorities to grant him provisional release and guarantee fair trial proceedings…
Logos of 15 signatory organizations
News

Failure to Address Complaint Against Police

  Update: On March 17, 2021, the Court of Appeal in Tunis ordered Rania Amdouni released. The appeals judge confirmed Amdouni’s conviction but suspended her six-month sentence, and increased the fine from 18 dinars ($6.5) to 218 dinars ($78…
Rania Amdouni, 26, at the office of the Tunisian Association of Democratic Women, on October 27, 2020.
News

Intensive Surveillance, Restriction of Visitors for More Than 3 Months

    (Washington) – Moroccan security forces have maintained a near-constant heavy presence outside the house of an activist for Western Sahara independence for more than three months, Human Rights Watch said today. They have provided…
Sultana Khaya
News

UN Experts Should Investigate

(Beirut) – Tunisian security forces have repeatedly targeted protesters, including lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) activists at protests, Human Rights Watch said today. The targeting involved arbitrary arrests, physical…
Protesters gather in Habib Bourguiba Avenue in Tunis, Tunisia on February 6, 2021.
News

1 Dead, Arrests for Facebook Posts and ‘Insulting Police’

(Tunis) – Police in several Tunisian governorates appear to have responded to social justice protests in recent weeks with excessive force at times, leaving one man dead and arresting hundreds, including many minors, Human Rights Watch said today.…
A protester holds up a sign saying “Police Everywhere, Justice Nowhere” during nation-wide protests calling for social justice and government reform on January 23, 2021, Avenue Habib Bourguiba, Tunis, Tunisia.
News

US Recognition of Moroccan Sovereignty Doesn’t Change Territory’s Status

(New York) – Morocco has cracked down on pro-independence activists in Western Sahara after an incident at a border crossing on November 13, 2020, Human Rights Watch said today. The incident re-ignited the long-stalled conflict between Morocco and the…
News

Police Violence Against LGBT People in Tunisia

On October 6, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) activists in Tunisia raised their voices and banners in the street, amid the hundreds of demonstrators who were peacefully protesting a draft law that would drastically limit criminal…
Saif Ayadi, LGBT rights activist at Damj Association, surrounded by protesters on October 6, 2020.
News

Repeal Laws Restraining Free Speech

(Tunis) – A Tunis court on November 12, 2020 sentenced a blogger, Wajdi Mahouechi, to two years in prison for posting a Facebook video that a court official deemed offensive, Human Rights Watch said today. Mahouechi, 31, a frequent commentator on…
A Tunisian woman walks past a graffiti that reads "Freedom is a daily practice" in Tunis April 26, 2011.
News

19 Have Been Imprisoned for 10 Years; Trial Fairness under Scrutiny

(Tunis) – Morocco’s highest court is examining the case of 19 Sahrawi men imprisoned since 2010 after violent clashes with the police, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International said today. A verdict is expected on November 25th. The men are serving…
Relatives of Sahrawi prisoners of the Gdeim Izik group outside a tribunal in Salé, Morocco, in December 2016.