HRW annual world report highlights ‘populist challenge’
HRW annual world report highlights ‘populist challenge’

Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] published its annual report [text, PDF] Thursday, covering global human rights issues from late 2016 through November 2017, and more than 90 countries. It highlights human rights problems occurring in Turkey, Egypt, Libya, Russia, China, Yemen, Burma, and others, as well as the growth of organizations and movements in response.

In the report’s introductory essay, titled “The Pushback Against the Populist Challenge,” HRW Executive Director Kenneth Roth writes “The past year showed the importance of pushing back against the threat posed by demagogues and their abusive policies … the best way to honor its principles is to vigorously defend them against those leaders who seek political advantage by depriving marginalized groups of the rights guaranteed for all.”

A press release [text] from HRW summarizing the report highlights France as a “prominent example of successful resistance to xenophobic populism” in addition to global phenomena, growing movements for gender equality, such as the Women’s March in the US.

The report also highlights the reaction to the election of President Donald Trump as a “reaffirmation of human rights from many quarters.”

Trump won the presidency with a campaign of hatred against Mexican immigrants, Muslim refugees, and other racial and ethnic minorities, and an evident disdain for women. A powerful response came from civic groups, journalists, lawyers, judges, many members of the public, and sometimes even elected members of Trump’s own party.