The following information is based on the Amnesty International Report 2021/22. This report documented the human rights situation in 149 countries in 2021, as well as providing global and regional analysis. It presents Amnesty International’s concerns and calls for action to governments and others.
Immigrant communities continued to be among the hardest hit by Covid-19. Development projects in the north proceeded without the consent of affected Sami Indigenous communities. The government promised new legislation on legal gender recognition based on self-identification. There were concerns about proposals to increase police surveillance powers and expand the mandate of private security firms to use force. Refugees and migrants applying for family reunification faced new restrictions. Charges were brought against representatives of the oil company Lundin Energy in relation to war crimes in South Sudan.
Gun violence, particularly involving young men, escalated in areas with high rates of crime and social exclusion. In September, women from affected communities organized a protest calling for more efforts to address social inequality and poverty.
Public health studies showed that immigrants continued to suffer disproportionately high levels of critical illness and death as a result of Covid-19; the studies noted socioeconomic factors including crowded housing as well as lower vaccination rates.
In November, the government-appointed Corona Commission found that the education system had become less equitable during the pandemic as distance learning approaches were less effective for students in a vulnerable situation.
Projects to extract minerals, increase logging and develop wind power proceeded in the north despite, in many cases, having failed to obtain consent from the Sami Indigenous people of affected regions. Several projects risked devastating effects on reindeer-herding Sami communities.
In September, the government presented a legal proposal on the right to consultation for the Sami people on matters potentially affecting them. The proposal did not incorporate the principle of free, prior and informed consent and included exceptions to the obligation to consult.
In November, the government presented a draft bill on legal recognition of gender identity based on self-identification. The bill, which separated the process of changing one’s legal gender from the medical procedure, had been revised following criticism from the Council on Legislation in 2018.
In November, the government announced proposals giving police powers to use camera surveillance, interception and house searches without suspicion of crime. Another proposal included provisions expanding the mandate of private security guards to use force in upholding law and order. There were concerns that this proposal lacked procedural safeguards for individuals and increased the risk of racial profiling.
In July, changes to the Aliens Act entered into force, imposing new requirements that greatly restricted the ability of refugees and migrants to exercise family reunification rights – one of the few safe and legal pathways to protection in Sweden.
Also in July, authorities halted forcible returns to Afghanistan. In August, the government temporarily changed the rules to enable people in Afghanistan to be part of the resettlement quota; 1,311 Afghans came to Sweden as quota refugees in 2021.
In November, the Swedish Prosecutor brought formal charges against two representatives of the oil company Lundin Energy (formerly Lundin Oil AB) for complicity in war crimes in South Sudan. The trial had not started by the end of the year.
International protection of human rights is in danger of unravelling as short-term national self-interest and draconian security crackdowns have led to a wholesale assault on basic freedoms and rights, warned Amnesty International as it launched its annual assessment of human rights around the world. “Your rights are in jeopardy: they are being treated with utter contempt by many governments around the world,” said Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International.
This has been a devastating year for those seeking to stand up for human rights and for those caught up in the suffering of war zones. Governments pay lip service to the importance of protecting civilians. And yet the world's politicians have miserably failed to protect those in greatest need. Amnesty International believes that this can and must finally change.
Kingdom of Sweden Head of state King Carl XVI Gustaf Head of government Fredrik Reinfeldt Ahmed Agiza, who had been subjected to rendition from Sweden to Egypt in 2001 and …
Syrian protesters in Europe and the Americas have been systematically monitored and harassed by embassy officials and others believed to be acting on behalf of the Syrian regime, Amnesty International …
Head of state: King Carl XVI Gustaf Head of government: Fredrik Reinfeldt Death penalty: abolitionist for all crimes Population: 9.3 million Life expectancy: 81.3 years Under-5 mortality (m/f): 4/4 per …
Europe: Open Secret: Mounting Evidence of Europe’s Complicity in Rendition and Secret Detention Available in PDF only.
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Climate change leads as one of the most important issues facing the world, according to a major new survey of young people published by Amnesty International today to mark Human Rights Day.
New research by Amnesty International has revealed the alarming impact that abuse and harassment on social media are having on women, with women around the world reporting stress, anxiety, or panic attacks as a result of these harmful online experiences.
On the launch of its 2015 State of the World report, Amnesty International USA urged President Obama to use his last year in office to bring U.S. laws and policies in line with international human rights standards.