World Report 2011: Uganda


Freedoms of assembly and expression in Uganda have come under attack in 2010, the pressure intensifying in advance of presidential and parliamentary elections scheduled for February 2011. Journalists critical of the government face intimidation and sometimes criminal charges from state agents and members of the ruling party. Security and quasi-military organizations continue to illegally detain and torture suspects, in some instances leading to death. Impunity for human rights abuses persists. For example, Uganda failed to carry out investigations or prosecutions for the deaths of at least 40 people killed, some by military police, in riots in September 2009.

On July 11, 2010, two bomb blasts in Kampala, the capital, killed 76 people who had gathered to watch the football World Cup final. The Somali armed Islamist group al-Shabaab claimed responsibility and threatened further attacks if Uganda continued to supply troops to the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). Uganda arrested scores of suspects, charged 36 with terrorism and eventually committed 17 for trial. The judiciary issued an injunction barring the press from covering the investigations and, on July 28, police broke up an opposition demonstration, stating that public gatherings were banned until the perpetrators of the bombings were arrested.



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