Regional integration or regional delusion in Latin America? 5

The Cuban political dissident Orlando Zapata Tamayo died in prison on February 23 after 85 days of hunger strike to protest against severe beatings in jail. Initially sentenced to 3 years imprisonment for contempt, public disorder and „disobedience”, he later was sentenced to 36 years for disobedience in jail. Actually, he was the victim of a very harsh regime of beatings and other privations, a situation very often mentioned in reports of various human rights organizations, Amnesty International being one of them. More…

Reclame

Authoritarian regimes thrive in the UN Human Rights Council 10

At the beginning of this month, two very troubling reports on the state of democracy in the world have been released almost simultaneously, and both are concerned with the highest locus of legitimacy and authority when dealing with democracy and human rights, the UN and, most specifically, the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), the successor of the UN Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) since 2006. The first research is Freedom House’s annual report on the activity of UNHRC and the second was released by the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR). This article will present the conclusions of these two reports, briefly corroborating their results with the most recent Freedom House’s Freedom in the World Report (2008) scores on political rights and civil liberties (a scale from 1 to 7, 1 for the highest degree of freedom, and 7 for the lowest level). More…