HRD acquitted

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

3 journalists acquitted after 4 years in detention

Court acquits three Iwacu TV journalists; Damascene Mutuyimana, Shadrack Niyonsenga and Jean Baptiste Nshimiyima, after remaining in detention for four years over charges of “spreading false information"; Journalists denied accreditation to cover the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) Read more

3 journalists acquitted after 4 years in detention

El Salvador: HRDs face increased risks under the state of exception

On 14th September 2022, the National Assembly of El Salvador approved a sixth extension of its ongoing state of exception. The country will complete its seventh month under the measure, which was first declared following a wave of gang violence in late March 2022. Between July 2022 and early September 2022, human rights defenders (HRDs) in El Salvador continued to face increased risk as a result of the state of exception. Read more  |  Read in Spanish

El Salvador: HRDs face increased risks under the state of exception

Authorities continue targeting the Bedoon Community

Members of the Bedoon community detained for peacefully demanding civil and human rights for the Bedoon community; Misdemeanours Court acquits prominent human rights defender Abdulhakim Al-Fadhli of insult and defamation charges Read more

Authorities continue targeting the Bedoon Community

The UAE continues to arbitrarily detain prisoners of conscience well past completion of their sentences

Ahead of a visit by UAE President Mohamed bin Zayed al Nahyan to Paris, Human Rights Watch warned that France’s energy plans should not include ignoring human rights abuses in the UAE; US-based human rights lawyer and board member of Democracy for the Arab World Now Asim Ghafoor was released after a court overturned his three-year prison sentence; On 17th July 2022, prominent human rights defender Dr Mohammed Al-Roken completed his sentence but remains in prison; Read more

The UAE continues to arbitrarily detain prisoners of conscience well past completion of their sentences

Deadly year for journalists in Mexico

On 11th August 2022, four employees of Switch 105.9 FM, Alan González, Alejandro Arriaga, Armando Guerrero and Andrés Flores, were shot and killed amid a wave of violent crimes in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua. Read more

Deadly year for journalists in Mexico

Civic freedoms restricted ahead of 24th August general elections

On 17th August 2022, police officers attempted to prevent a civil society protest from taking place in Luanda. The protest, organised by dozens of CSO's, aimed to protest irregularities in the electoral process for the upcoming general elections on 24th August 2022. Groups of protesters, spread out on the planned itinerary of the protest, were dispersed by police officers. Dozens of protesters, including VOA correspondent Coque Mukuta, were reportedly arrested. Read more

Civic freedoms restricted ahead of 24th August general elections

Several killed, injured, arrested in protest against the military junta’s “unilateral management of the transition”

Front National pour la Défence de la Constitution (FNDC), a coalition of political parties, civil society groups and trade unions, called for protests on 28th and 29th July 2022 in Conakry to demand more transparency in Guinea’s transition, as coordinated by the military junta. Protests also called for the establishment of an inclusive framework for dialogue. According to news reports, the military junta deployed the armed forces to maintain public order during the demonstrations, and security forces reportedly used tear gas to disperse protesters, while protesters responded by throwing stones and burning tyres. Some of the protests turned into violent clashes between protesters and security forces, particularly in the neighbourhoods of Bambèto, Sonfonia and on the route Le Prince, and which led to casualties, injuries,and dozens of arrests. Read more  |  Read in French

Several killed, injured, arrested in protest against the military junta’s “unilateral management of the transition”

Six members and supporters of Wakit Tama arrested, charged following protest

Between 14th and 17th May 2022, six Wakit Tama members and supporters, including protest organisers, were arrested: secretary-general of the Trade Unions of Chad, Gounoung Vaima Ganfare; lawyer at the Chadian Bar Association Koudé Mbaïnaïssem; President of the Group of Civil Society Executives Hissène Massar Hissène, former ambassador Allamine Adoudou, secretary-general of the Union of Chadian Supplier Traders Youssouf Korom and spokesperson for Wakit Tama Max Loalngar, the former head of human rights organisation Chadian Human Rights League (Ligue Tchadienne de droits de l’homme). The six were charged with gathering to cause public disturbance, harm to property, and physical assault. The trial of the six is set to start on 6th June 2022. Read more

Six members and supporters of Wakit Tama arrested, charged following  protest