HRD detained

Nicaragua in contempt of international human rights mechanisms

On 18th October 2022, the Ministry of the Interior ordered the removal of the legal status of 42 national civil society organisations (CSOs) and the cancellation of the operating registration of 58 foreign CSOs, most of them from the United States, Spain and Germany. Read more

Nicaragua in contempt of international human rights mechanisms

Attacks on Guatemalan human rights organisations and justice operators

On 19th October 2022, the Attorney General’s Office raided the family house of Leily Santizo, a former prosecutor with the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG). The raid took place in execution of an arrest warrant against Santizo for alleged obstruction of criminal proceedings. Read more

Attacks on Guatemalan human rights organisations and justice operators

Protests escalate in Afghanistan as frustration with Taliban rule and abuses grow

In recent months, protests by women activists have been met by restrictions and violence as well as arrests, torture and ill-treatment. Media outlets have been banned and journalists covering protests restricted. Books and social media apps are being banned while political parties have effectively been banned. Read more

Protests escalate in Afghanistan as frustration with Taliban rule and abuses grow

Honduras: attacks on Garífuna human rights defenders continue

Alfredo López Álvarez, a Garífuna human rights defender and member of the Triunfo de la Cruz Land Defence Committee, was threatened during the Central America Donors Forum 2022 in October 2022. Read more  |  Read in Spanish

Honduras: attacks on Garífuna human rights defenders continue

Despite UN scrutiny, activists continue to be criminalised by the new Philippines administration

Over the last five months, human rights defenders have continued to be arrested on fabricated charges while the terrorist financing law has been used to persecute activists. Journalists have also been targeted for their work. Read more

Despite UN scrutiny, activists continue to be criminalised by the new Philippines administration

Mass arrests of activists, restrictive draft laws and widening campaign against ‘’false’’ information

Applying a controversial law on protection against ‘’false’’ information, the government initiated the blocking of several news sites. Those targeted included the Kyrgyz service of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, which was blocked for two months in October 2022 because of a video allegedly featuring incorrect and biased information about Kyrgyzstan’s role in hostilities at the border with Tajikistan, which broke out in September 2022 and resulted in dozens of people being killed and hundreds injured. The government described these events as ‘’a pre-meditated military aggression’’ by Tajikistan and insisted that it had only acted from a defensive point of view. The measures taken under the law on ‘’false’’ information showed that this law can be used as a government censorship tool, as feared by media and civil society actors when it was adopted last year. Police also increased efforts to track down ‘’false’’ information on social media and summoned social media users for ‘’prophylactic’’ discussions because of allegedly ‘’provocative’’ posts. New problematic draft laws on media and NGOs, developed by the presidential administration, were put forward. In an alarming development seen in October 2022, the authorities arrested close to 30 activists, journalists, bloggers, human rights defenders and other critics of a government-negotiated border deal, under which the territory of the Kempir-Abad water reservoir is due to become part of neighbouring Uzbekistan. Read more

Mass arrests of activists, restrictive draft laws and widening campaign against ‘’false’’ information

Bahrain withdraws candidacy for Human Rights Council reportedly in response to sharp criticism on its human rights record

On 5th October 2022, Reuters reported that Bahrain will no longer run for election to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UN HRC) following sharp criticism of its poor human rights record; The Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD) actively campaigned against the election of Bahrain to the UN HRC and, in August, held a series of meetings with UN officials and diplomats urging states not to support Bahrain’s candidacy. Read more

Bahrain withdraws candidacy for Human Rights Council reportedly in response to sharp criticism on its human rights record

Environmental rights protests & activists continue to come under attack

On 23rd October 2022, environmental activists protested the planned construction of a new bridge in Novi Sad, claiming that it will devastate the last green oasis in this city. They gathered in Šodroš but were met with a strong police presence. Following clashes with police units, activists were detained and suffered serious injuries. Protesters were not only met with a large police presence but were also publicly vilified by politicians who discredited and insulted them. Additionally, environmental rights activists were also targeted during this period. On 21st September 2022, environmental activist Miroslav Perović from Kosjerić, Central Serbia, was beaten in front of his building. Read more

Environmental rights protests & activists continue to come under attack

Peru: attacks on journalists as political polarisation remains prominent

On 8th July 2022, a group of presumed government supporters attacked journalists who were waiting outside the Public Prosecutor’s Office to cover a hearing in a case involving President Pedro Castillo’s family. The assailants began chasing and insulting the journalists, calling them “sold out press” and “trash.” Read more

Peru: attacks on journalists as political polarisation remains prominent

Civic freedoms remain highly restricted as Karakalpakstan protests turn violent, bloggers and activists targeted

On 20th June 2022, President Shavkat Mirziyoyev outlined draft amendments to the Constitution and proposed holding a nation-wide referendum on the amendments. Observers and civil society activists voiced concern that the proposed amendments do not envisage any limitation of the President’s scope of power, and would allow President Mirziyoyev to potentially remain in power for two more seven-year terms – until 2040. The proposed amendments triggered an outcry in the Republic of Karakalpakstan in western Uzbekistan since they included amendments removing this region’s autonomous status and its constitutional right to secede from Uzbekistan. Authorities reportedly dispersed the demonstration using excessive force. Official figures indicate that 21 people died, including 17 citizens and four law enforcement officials. However, media reports stated that by the evening of 2nd July 2022 there were at least 77 bodies at the Republican Scientific Centre for Emergency Medical Care. The authorities have detained journalists, bloggers and activists whom they suspect of playing leading roles in the protests. Read more

Civic freedoms remain highly restricted as Karakalpakstan protests turn violent, bloggers and activists targeted