Human Rights

US Women’s Equality Celebrated on Anniversary of 19th Amendment

Women’s Equality Day on Sunday marks the 98th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote in the United States.

Australia: Press Vietnam To End Systemic Abuses

Unceasing Crackdown Amid Preparation for Rights Dialogue

The Australian government should press the Vietnamese government to release political prisoners and detainees; end repression of free speech, association, and assembly; and take steps to end police brutality.

Syria: ISIS Holding Children Hostage

27 People Kidnapped During Attack on Village Still Held

Islamic State (also known as ISIS) fighters are holding at least 27 people hostage, including at least 16 children, in southern Syria, Human Rights Watch said on August 25, 2018. Local residents say that ISIS is holding the hostages in the eastern region of the Sweida desert and hoping to use them as leverage in negotiations with the Syrian government and Russia.

Central African Republic: Bar Amnesty for Atrocity Crimes

Political Dialogue Should Not Absolve War Criminals

A general amnesty as part of the political dialogue in the Central African Republic would be incompatible with the government’s duty to bring those responsible for grave international crimes to justice and with victims’ rights to accountability, five Central African and international human rights organizations said on August 24, 2018. The groups are Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), Central African Human Rights League (LCDH), and Central African Human Rights Observatory (OCDH).

Yemen: Coalition Fails to Curb Violations

Investigations Lack Credibility, Leave Victims Without Redress

The Saudi-led coalition’s investigations into alleged war crimes in Yemen have lacked credibility and failed to provide redress to civilian victims, Human Rights Watch said in a report released on August 24, 2018.

Vietnam: Activists Beaten in Concert Raid

Investigate Assaults Against Dissidents

Vietnamese government officers and men in civilian clothes raided a concert in Ho Chi Minh City on August 15, 2018, and severely beat the performer and two prominent activists in the audience, Human Rights Watch said on August 22. Vietnam should conduct an impartial, transparent, and thorough investigation of the attack.

Libya: 45 Sentenced to Death for 2011 Killings

Due Process Concerns in Mass Trial

Libya’s judiciary convicted 99 defendants in a mass trial on August 15, 2018, sentencing 45 to death and 54 to five years in prison, Human Rights Watch said on August 22. The judiciary has a record of conducting unfair trials.

Hungary: Asylum Seekers Denied Food

Cease Inhumane Treatment, Resume Distribution Immediately

Hungarian authorities have stopped food distribution since early August 2018 to some rejected asylum seekers held in transit zones on the Hungarian-Serbian border, Human Rights Watch said on Aug 22, 2018. They should immediately ensure that all asylum seekers in custody are provided sufficient and appropriate food in line with the government’s legal obligations.

Ethiopia: Probe Years of Abuse in Somali Region

Redress and Accountability Needed for Crimes

The government of Ethiopia should commit to an in-depth, independent fact-finding mission into many years of rights abuses and violations of the laws of war in eastern Ethiopia’s Somali region, Human Rights Watch said on Aug 20, 2018. This should include specific investigations into the responsibility of senior Somali region officials, including the former regional president, Abdi Mohamoud Omar, and the current head of the region’s paramilitary Liyu police force, Abdirahman Abdillahi Burale.

Killer Robots Fail Key Moral, Legal Test

Principles and Public Conscience Call for Preemptive Ban

Basic humanity and the public conscience support a ban on fully autonomous weapons, Human Rights Watch said in a report released on Aug 21, 2018. Countries participating in an upcoming international meeting on such “killer robots” should agree to negotiate a prohibition on the weapons systems’ development, production, and use.