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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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Human Rights Council Panel commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Genocide Convention

As we commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Genocide Convention, I wish to address the crucial role of the International Criminal Court in realizing its ideals.
 
 This year also marks the twentieth anniversary of the adoption of the ICC’s…
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Interactive Dialogue with COI on Syria

Human Rights Watch thanks the Commission of Inquiry for highlighting the devastating and unlawful acts committed by parties on both sides of the conflict during the offensive on Eastern Ghouta between February and April 2018. Over the months leading up to…
A fighter from Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) stands next to debris of damaged buildings in Raqqa, Syria, September 25, 2017. © 2017 REUTERS
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Item 4 Interactive Dialogue with the Commission of Inquiry on Syria

Human Rights Watch supports the findings of the Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian government’s use of chemical weapons against civilians. An investigation by Human Rights Watch has established that the Syrian government forces have used nerve agents on…
Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) fighters on their way to Raqqa, Syria June 6, 2017© 2017 Reuters
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Item 10: Interactive Dialogue with the Independent Expert on Haiti

Once again, we are pleased to see such a strong focus on economic, social and cultural rights in your discussion of the five key aspects of the human rights situation in Haiti. The five key human rights concerns at focus in your report remain Human Rights…
A boy fixes the roof of a makeshift tent at a refugee camp for Haitians returning from the Dominican Republic on the outskirts of Anse-a-Pitres, Haiti, September 6, 2015.
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Item 6 UPR Adoption

We wish to congratulate Haiti on the inauguration of President Jovenel Moise in February of this year and hope that he and his administration will make human rights a priority.
 
 Human Rights Watch continues to have deep concerns related to dire…
People make a line as they wait for food to be handed out after Hurricane Matthew hit Jeremie, Haiti, October 19, 2016.
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Item 2 – Interactive Dialogue with the High Commissioner on his Annual Report

We share the High Commissioner’s concerns about current threats to human rights values, and to the international framework itself. Whether the Council can rise to these challenges will depend on a number of factors.
 
 First, leadership: many…
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Human Rights Council Special Session on human rights situation in Aleppo

For weeks, doctors, hospital staff, activists, and journalists in eastern Aleppo have told Human Rights Watch that Russian and Syrian aircraft have relentlessly bombarded opposition-controlled parts of the city in repeated indiscriminate attacks that hit…
Syrian Man Carries Children After Barrel Bomb Attack