Amnesty International to cease work in India, citing government harassment

The government is “treating human rights organizations like criminal enterprises and dissenting individuals as criminals without any credible evidence,” said Avinash Kumar, executive director of Amnesty International India, in a statement. Its goal is to “stoke a climate of fear.”

Amnesty said it would lay off its staff and cease its human rights campaigns, which have included reports on the deadly inter-religious riots in Delhi earlier this year and India’s crackdown in the restive region of Kashmir.

Tuesday’s announcement puts India in the same category as authoritarian regimes such as Russia, the only other country where Amnesty International previously ceased operations when it shuttered its office in 2016. The director of its Turkey arm was arrested but its office in the country remains functional. The group does not have a presence in China.

 Amnesty said that it was in compliance with all Indian laws and had received no formal communication

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