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The Venezuelan government has systematically used brutal treatment, including torture, against anti-government protesters and political opponents. Security force personnel beat detainees severely and tortured them with electric shocks, asphyxiation,…

Address Abuses, Use of Excessive Force, Censorship

(New York) – The Organization of American States (OAS) and its member countries should proceed with a meeting on the situation in Venezuela, Human Rights Watch said today. The OAS should use the meeting to address the human rights violations committed in…

International Community Should Condemn Abuses, Censorship

(New York) – Venezuelan security forces have used excessive and unlawful force against protesters on multiple occasions since February 12, 2014, including beating detainees and shooting at crowds of unarmed people, Human Rights Watch said today. The…

Government Acts to Curb Discussion About Chavez Health, Inauguration

(Washington, DC) – Venezuela should end censorship and intimidation of media that challenge the official line regarding President Hugo Chávez’s health and inauguration, Human Rights Watch said today. In recent days, the government has ordered a…

Critics Targeted by Government

The concentration of power under President Hugo Chávez has taken a heavy toll on human rights in Venezuela, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The 133-page report, “Tightening the Grip: Concentration and Abuse of Power in Chávez's…

 In 2008, Human
 Rights Watch released A Decade Under Chávez, a 230-page report
 documenting how the government of President…

Criminalization of Offending Speech Violates Freedom of Expression

(Washington, DC) - The conviction of Oswaldo Álvarez Paz for disseminating "false information" - on the basis of his criticism of the Chávez government - is a move against free speech in Venezuela, Human Rights Watch said today. Venezuela should revoke…

Attacks and Threats Remain a Very Serious Concern

Honduran authorities should take concrete steps to end impunity for abuses committed after the country's 2009 coup, and to curb ongoing attacks against journalists, human rights defenders, and political activists, Human Rights Watch said in a report…

Letter to Bernardo Álvarez Herrera, Ambassador of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the United States

Bernardo Álvarez Herrera Ambassador of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the United States   Dear Ambassador Álvarez, As a follow-up to the meeting that Mr. Angelo Rivero Santos held on August 16 with Ms. Gimena Sánchez-Garzoli, Senior…

Little Progress on Human Rights after Six Months of Lobo Government

(Washington DC) - Six months after President Porfirio Lobo took office, Honduras has made little progress toward addressing the serious human rights abuses since the 2009 coup, Human Rights Watch said today. Threats and attacks against journalists and the…

Stop Prosecuting and Harassing Critics and Restricting Flow of Information

(Washington, DC) - Venezuela should close a recently created office that grants the Chávez administration broad powers to limit public debate, Human Rights Watch said today. The government should also stop seeking to discredit human rights defenders and…

Forcing Cable Channels Off Air Undermines Freedom of Expression

(Washington, DC) - The Chávez administration should not abuse its authority to compel broadcast of presidential speeches that promote the government's political agenda, Human Rights Watch said today. On January 23, 2010, the Chávez government threatened…
(Washington, DC) - The restoration of constitutional order in Honduras should be accompanied by the immediate repeal of repressive decrees issued by the de facto government, and a full investigation of abuses committed in the aftermath of the coup, Human…

Emergency Decree Prohibits Criticism of De Facto Government

(New York) - Honduras's de facto government should immediately rescind an emergency decree that severely restricts press freedoms, Human Rights Watch said today. Honduran security forces seized the offices of Radio Globo and Cholusat Sur television early…
Secretary General José Miguel Insulza Organization of American States 17th Street & Constitution Ave., N.W. Washington, D.C. 20006 Dear Secretary General: I am writing to share with you our concerns regarding credible reports that we have…

Vague Law Threatens Press Freedom

(Washington, DC) - The Chávez government should immediately stop harassing a private television station that has been critical of the government and call off an unwarranted investigation into its conduct, Human Rights Watch said today. In response to…
(Mexico City) - President Obama came under fire last month for sharing a smile with Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez at the Summit of the Americas. Critics say that Obama was wrong to be friendly with a foreign leader renowned for his anti-U.S. antics…

 A Decade Under Chávez 
 Political Intolerance and Lost
 Opportunities for Advancing Human Rights in Venezuela
 Executive Summary
 Political Discrimination
 The Courts
 The Media
 Organized Labor
The Venezuelan government’s politically motivated decision not to renew a television broadcasting license is a serious setback for freedom of expression in Venezuela, Human Rights Watch said today. The decision will shut down Radio Caracas Television (…