Amnesty International says political upheavals in parts of South Asia have provided the context for accounts of fear, deprivation and discrimination.
In its annual report, released on Wednesday, the human rights group says politically motivated violence in Bangladesh marred the run-up to elections that were eventually delayed. Amnesty also voices concern about widespread killings and displacements in Sri Lanka as a result of clashes between government troops and Tamil rebels.
The human rights group says all sides in Afghanistan's conflict have committed serious breaches of humanitarian law, including international forces.
Amnesty points out that two countries in the region, India and Pakistan, retained the death penalty. But, Amnesty says the two countries made some progress in protecting women's rights. It said India introduced a law on violence against women, while in Pakistan, a complaint of rape can no longer be downgraded to a charge of adultery or fornication.