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Human Rights Watch in Kyrgyztan

Advocating forcefully to defend human rights.

Over 280 staff members globally.

In a year when regimes notorious for their repression and abuses were toppled throughout the Middle East and North Africa, human rights and the individual and collective quest for ‘dignity’ have been at the forefront of global discussions. With roots stretching back to 1978, but led for the past 18 years by former prosecutor Kenneth Roth, Human Rights Watch has a long track record of tirelessly pursuing these issues across 90 countries worldwide. Adopting an un-apologetically ‘muscular’ approach to advocacy, the organization is assiduous in leveraging its reporting expertise to press key decision-makers for concrete changes in policy and practice. 

Central to the impact of Human Rights Watch are its crisis-directed research, meticulous investigations and detailed reports. Unlike mass-membership human rights organizations, however, Human Rights Watch focuses on targeted advocacy, insider access and deft utilization of media headlines to draw international attention to gross human rights violations and raise the pressure on those in positions of influence. 

While not afraid of courting controversy, this approach has let to numerous successes, including the recent adoption of an international treaty to protect the rights of domestic workers, and a commitment from the Obama administration to combat the abuses of the Lord’s Resistance Army in Uganda.

(Photo © Human Rights Watch)