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Dire Risks for Women Asylum Seekers in Greece: Daily Brief

Plus: Net neutrality repealed in US; South Sudan hybrid court delayed; No word on Laos civil society leader since 2012; Sri Lanka joins global landmine ban; Silent struggle with rape in Kenya; Woman stays in jail for miscarriage; Modest signs of hope in Uzbekistan; and 2017 in human rights tweets.


  1. Women asylum seekers living in the Moria "hotspot” on Lesbos face harassment, the threat of gender-based violence, and health risks, resulting from insufficient security, poor hygiene and sanitation facilities, and failures in the system to identify vulnerable people. Greek authorities should provide adequate protection for women and girls in the hotspots.
  2. The US Federal Communications Commission voted to repeal rules regulating internet service providers, preventing them from blocking sites or prioritizing faster access to websites that have paid extra. This affects both people's freedom of expression and freedom of information.
  3. Four years into the conflict in South Sudan, both parties continue to commit grave human rights crimes against civilians, and top officials have failed to make good on promises to establish an African Union-South Sudanese hybrid court.
  4. The prominent civil society leader Sombath Somphone was forcibly disappeared in the capital of Laos, Vientiane, in December 2012. “Five years on, Sombath’s ‘disappearance’ highlights the glaring problems of enforced disappearance, widespread rights violations, and the culture of impunity protecting government officials in Laos,” said Phil Robertson, HRW's deputy Asia director.
  5. Sri Lanka has joined the international treaty banning antipersonnel landmines. The action is especially significant because Sri Lanka used antipersonnel mines in the past and has since undertaken an extensive, ongoing mine clearance effort.
  6. One of the victims of the widespread sexual violence during Kenya’s recent elections recounts her silent struggle with the aftermath of rape, explaining how she continues to experience chronic and incapacitating health problems.
  7. A court in El Salvador has rejected the appeal of a woman sentenced to 30 years in prison over what she says was a stillbirth. Teodora del Carmen Vásquez was convicted of "aggravated homicide" under El Salvador’s total ban on abortions.
  8. Since Shavkat Mirziyoyev assumed the presidency of Uzbekistan 15 months ago, some important, if very modest, signs of hope have emerged following decades of human rights abuses. But it’s a very mixed picture.
  9. And a look back at 2017 in human rights tweets from @hrw.