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Human Rights Observatory
Wednesday, August 8, 2018
Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak's legal woes are mounting over the multi-billion dollar embezzlement scandal of the country's 1MDB sovereign wealth fund.  Najib was charged Wednesday with three counts of money laundering involving the transfer of $10 million into his personal bank accounts from SRC International, a former unit of 1MDB. Each count carries a 15-year prison term and a fine of not less than five times the amount stolen. He pleaded not guilty to each... (Full Story)
Wednesday, August 8, 2018
Activists have welcomed the release of a 15-year-old girl from jail on the Indonesian island of Sumatra on “humanitarian grounds” following her arrest for a home abortion after being repeatedly raped by her older brother.  They worry, however, that proposed changes to the nation’s criminal code will reinforce the criminalization of abortion, target sexual minorities and even outlaw disseminating information about contraception. The victim, identified by authorities by her initials... (Full Story)
Wednesday, August 8, 2018
The Laos government will suspend approval of new dams while it reviews more than 50 current projects following the catastrophic collapse of a hydropower facility late last month.  Kanya Khammoungkhoun, Deputy Director General of the Laotian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, told VOA a wide scale review of the country’s dam projects would be launched in the wake of the disaster, which killed scores of people and displaced more than 10,000 others in two countries. “Over 50 dams in the... (Full Story)
Wednesday, August 8, 2018
Nine Guatemalan child migrants who were taken from their parents at the U.S. border arrived home for tearful reunions Tuesday as the Trump administration tries to comply with a court order to return hundreds of separated minors to their families. "I want to see my mama," Leo Jeancarlo de Leon, 6, said after he got off a plane from New York at Guatemala City's international airport wearing a Spider-Man T-shirt and a blue cap. Four children arrived on a first flight and... (Full Story)
Tuesday, August 7, 2018
Expand Transgender people face discrimination and abuse from state officials and agents, including from public sector health workers, teachers, and local government administrators. © 2014 Javad Tizmaghz for Human Rights Watch Malaysia’s new government has put out a series of mixed messages on where it stands with regard to the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. On the one hand, the minister in charge of Islamic affairs in the new Pakatan Harapan government, Mujahid Yusof Rawa, has condemned bullying and workplace discrimination against LGBT people. He has suggested… (Full Story)
Tuesday, August 7, 2018
Expand An image of the Guantanmo Bay Behavioral Health Unit. © Department of Defense August 6, 2018 American Psychological Association Attn: Board of Directors and Council of Representatives 750 First St. NE Washington, DC 20002 Dear Members of the Board of Directors and Council of Representatives: We, the undersigned human rights and civil liberties organizations, are deeply concerned that the American Psychological Association (APA) is considering rolling back critical protections instituted to safeguard psychologists from complicity in torture and abuse and to facilitate ethical and independent… (Full Story)
Tuesday, August 7, 2018
Dear Mr. Kaplan, Thank you for your reply to our July 18, 2016 letter re: Facebook’s potential operations in China. We appreciate your engagement on human rights through initiatives such as the Global Network Initiative and directly with our organization. On November 22, 2016, the New York Times reported that Facebook was developing software “to suppress posts from appearing in people’s news feeds in specific geographic areas,” specifically “to help Facebook get into China.”1 The report states that Facebook would “offer the software to enable a third party—in this case, most likely a partner Chinese… (Full Story)
Tuesday, August 7, 2018
Dear Mr. Zuckerberg: We write to express our concern about the significant risks associated with Facebook’s possible entry into China. Though Facebook remains blocked in the country, we understand that your firm has engaged local partners for your advertising services. You have also sought ties inside and outside China with senior Chinese government officials. As you consider whether and how to operate in China, we urge you to be certain that your operations will neither assist nor enable Chinese authorities in censoring peaceful expression, conducting abusive surveillance, or retaliating against… (Full Story)
Tuesday, August 7, 2018
(Berlin, August 7, 2018) – Tajik security services forced an activist’s 10-year-old daughter, elderly mother, and brother off an airplane at Tajikistan on August 4, 2018, seven human rights groups said today. They were on their way to Europe to reunite with the activist. Expand Tajik authorities have placed 10-year-old Fatima Davlyatova, daughter of peaceful political activist, Shabnam Khudoydodova, on a watch list and prevented her from leaving to Europe to reunite with her mother. © Khudoydodova family The Tajik government should immediately lift the politically motivated travel ban… (Full Story)
Tuesday, August 7, 2018
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