In a report released on March 28, the New-York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) said that, 10 years after the fall of the Taliban, women are still being imprisoned for running away from domestic violence or for having sex outside of marriage.
Human Rights Watch has warned that Iraq is falling back into authoritarianism and headed towards becoming a police state, despite claims from Washington that the United States has helped establish democracy in the country…[READ MORE]
When Obitkhoja O., a 17-year old Uzbek boy, was arrested in 2009 for alleged petty theft, he had little idea what kind of police interrogation he was in for. Officers handcuffed his wrists and ankles and tossed him around in the air; he was kicked repeatedly in the head while bound to a chair; and police tied a gas mask tightly around his head to induce asphyxiation.
Obitkhoja’s story is just one of many that appear in a groundbreaking new report from Human Rights Watch, “No One Left to Witness,” documenting the deterioration of basic rights in the secretive nation of Uzbekistan. The report is based on hundreds of first-hand interviews with Uzbek human rights activists, lawyers, and government officials. It paints a grim portrait of a regime in which brutal torture is routinely employed as a pre-trial detention procedure for both political prisoners and common criminals…
Steve Swerdlow, a researcher for Human Rights Watch and the author of the report, visited RFE/RL’s Prague offices December 9 to discuss the report’s findings. He says that torture has become a vehicle for advancement among members of the country’s security services…[Read More]