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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.
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Adds to Severe Restrictions on the Internet, Media

(Bangkok) – The Myanmar junta added a ban on satellite television to existing restrictions on the internet and media, tightening its grip over information in the country, Human Rights Watch said today. On May 4, 2021, the ruling State Administration…
Anti-coup protesters flash the three-finger sign of defiance during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar on April 23, 2021.
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Submission to the UN Independent Expert on the enjoyment of all human rights by older persons

This submission is based on Human Rights Watch research on human rights issues impacting older women,[1] including domestic violence, abuse, and neglect in residential institutions for older people, abuses during armed conflict, and health disparities…
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Internet, Mobile Shutdowns Violate Rights, Hinder Access to Information

Streets throughout Myanmar were stained again on Sunday with the blood of dozens of protesters gunned down by government security forces. Local media reports indicate it was the deadliest day since the February 1 coup, with many of the killings taking…
Protesters surround an injured man in Hlaing Tharyar township in Yangon, Myanmar, March 14, 2021.
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Camera Surveillance, Mass Data Collection Bolsters Abusive Junta

(Bangkok) – The Myanmar military junta’s access to a new public camera system equipped with facial recognition and license plate recognition technology poses a serious threat to basic rights in the country, Human Rights Watch said today. Increased…
A police officer takes visuals of protesters close to the Indonesian Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. 
News

Armed Group’s Landmine Use Doesn’t Justify Ban in Rakhine, Chin States

Myanmar’s government should immediately lift internet restrictions in Rakhine and Chin States that have put civilians at added risk, Human Rights Watch said today. Government restrictions on the internet have hampered the coordination of aid,…
Three people walk along a road close to the surge of fighting between the Arakan Army and Myanmar military in Rakhine State, January 25, 2019.
News

Lift Restrictions in Embattled Rakhine, Chin States

(Bangkok) – The Myanmar government should immediately lift all internet restrictions in eight townships in Rakhine and Chin States, Human Rights Watch said today. The mobile internet shutdown, which began on June 21, 2019, is affecting more than a…
A telecommunications tower in Mrauk U township, Rakhine State, where the Myanmar government has imposed an internet blackout. 
News

Counter-Terrorism Law Threatens Press Freedom, Freedom of Information

(Bangkok) – Myanmar authorities should immediately drop all charges against an editor for broadcasting an interview with an armed group representative, Human Rights Watch said today. On March 30, police arrested and charged Nay Myo Lin, the editor-…
Myanmar press freedom and youth activists demonstrate for the release of two jailed Reuters journalists, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, in Yangon, Myanmar, September 16, 2018.
News

Blocking Access Could Cost Lives

UPDATE: Ethiopia announced that it would restore phone and internet service to western Oromia after a three-month shutdown. (New York) – Intentionally shutting down or restricting access to the internet violates multiple rights and can be…
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News

Restore Telecommunications, Allow Aid to Conflict Areas

Myanmar authorities have issued a surprise order reinstating the shutdown of mobile internet traffic in five townships in Myanmar’s northwestern Rakhine and Chin States. Added to four other Rakhine State townships where mobile internet…
A telecommunications tower in Mrauk U township, Rakhine State, Myanmar. The township is one of nine where the government has imposed an internet blackout since June 21, 2019.
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Crackdown on Free Expression Tightens

  (Bangkok) – The Myanmar government faced increasing pressure during 2019 for international justice for its human rights violations against the Rohingya and other ethnic minorities, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2020.…
Rohingya refugees watch ICJ proceedings at a restaurant in a refugee camp on December 12, 2019 in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.
News

Immediately End Restrictions in Rakhine, Chin States

(Bangkok) – The Myanmar government should immediately lift internet restrictions imposed on nine townships in Rakhine and Chin States, Human Rights Watch said today. The disruption to internet services since June 21, 2019 has exacerbated an…
A telecommunications tower in Mrauk U township, Rakhine State, Myanmar. The township is one of nine where the government has imposed an internet blackout since June 21, 2019.
News

Government Uses Draconian Laws to Keep a Grip on the Media

The release of Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo from a Myanmar prison is a joyous occasion for their families and all of those who have advocated for their release. But it should not blind anyone to the government’s ongoing repression of…
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News

Video Shows Need to Improve Infrastructure, Provide Services

(New York) – Bangladesh’s overcrowded, hilly, and rain-soaked mega camp for ethnic Rohingya refugees is precarious for everyone, but especially for people with disabilities, Human Rights Watch said today in a new video. More than 700,000 people…
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Report
  Summary In late August and September 2017, Bangladesh welcomed the sudden influx of several hundred thousand Rohingya refugees fleeing ethnic cleansing in Myanmar. This followed an earlier wave of violence in October 2016, which forced over…
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Refugees Awaiting Future Return to Myanmar Need Safer Camps

(Bangkok) – The Bangladeshi government should relocate Rohingya refugees living in a severely overcrowded mega camp to safer ground in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, Human Rights Watch said in a report issued today. The refugees, who fled the…
A Rohingya refugee camp in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, September 19, 2017.
News

The Humanitarian Crisis’ Disproportionate Impact on Older People

I met Fernando Arvelo (pseudonym), a 74-year-old Venezuelan, at a soup kitchen in Cúcuta, the main Colombian city across the border from Táchira state in Venezuela. Fernando moved to Táchira from his home state – a 20-hour drive – soon after his wife,…
A 74-year-oldVenezuelan man eats lunch at a soup kitchen in Cúcuta, a Colombian city across the Venezuelan border, July 28, 2018.
News

Media Under Assault on World Press Freedom Day

  There’s little cause for celebration this World Press Freedom Day in Myanmar, where freedom of the press is under threat and the space for independent and critical reporting is collapsing. In the last year, despite an ostensible transition…
Detained and handcuffed Reuters journalist Kyaw Soe Oo carries his daughter Moe Thin Wai Zin while arriving for a court hearing in Yangon, Myanmar May 2, 2018. REUTERS/Ann Wang
News

Amend Provision Violating Free Expression Rights

(Bangkok) – Burmese authorities should not pursue a criminal complaint brought under Burma’s privacy law against a Facebook user for posts critical of a state chief minister, Human Rights Watch said today. Parliament should…
201801asia_burma_privacylaw Burma's President Htin Kyaw arrives for a dinner reception in Naypyitaw, Burma on March 30, 2016.