Daylight Beatings in Zimbabwe: Daily Brief

The highly politicized military at the core of Zimbabwe’s crisis; who's responsible for torture of Saudi women?; crackdown in Syria against perceived opposition to armed group; Egypt’s LGBT crackdown expands to stifle journalists; good news for people with disabilities in Armenia & Nigeria; and welcome support in the #SaveHakeem campaign.

Authorities in the United Arab Emirates recently gave out awards as an initiative to improve gender equality in the workplace across the UAE. But one thing overshadowed what might have been an otherwise positive nod toward equality: all of the award recipients were men. 

"Remember this name: Loujain (pronounced Loo-JAYNE) al-Hathloul. She is 29 years old and a courageous advocate for gender equality — so she is in a Saudi Arabian prison, and reportedly our Saudi allies have tortured her, even waterboarded her."

In Syria, an armed group with links to al-Qaeda has in recent months arbitrarily arrested scores of residents in the Idlib region that it controls. HRW has documented 11 cases in which the group, Hay’et Tahrir al-Sham, detained people, apparently because of their peaceful work documenting abuses or protesting the group’s rule. Six of them were apparently tortured.

A television anchor in Egypt was unexpectedly sentenced to one year in prison for interviewing a gay man on TV last week. Read this comment by Neela Ghoshal, Senior Researcher in HRW's LGBT Program.

There's very positive news for people with disabilities in Nigeria and Armenia.

There's also good news from the campaign to save Hakeem al-Araibi, a professional football player who is stuck in prison in Thailand, and at risk of being deported to Bahrain. He has been tortured in the past in his home country, but now has refugee status in Australia.