Human Rights Watch’s anti-Israel Agenda

Abstract

The influence of Human Rights Watch (HRW) is reflected in the organisation’s intense involvement in institutions that emphasise human rights, including the United Nations and the International Criminal Court. However, HRW and its leaders have been strongly criticised for intense political and ideological bias against Israel and for proliferating unsubstantiated accusations to fit this bias. This article documents the role of Kenneth Roth, Executive Director since 1993, in this politicisation. Roth’s direct involvement with Israel-focused activities is fundamentally different from his role on other topics and countries on HRW’s agenda, and contrasts strongly with norms of universality and political neutrality.

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