09 September 2004

More bad news

Amnesty International delivers a long article saying that the "War on Terror" has been bad for human rights in the Gulf and on the Arabian Penninsula.
Over the last decade the region as a whole witnessed noticeable growth in governmental and non-governmental human rights institutions coupled with increasing demands for greater respect of human rights. These achievements are increasingly in jeopardy in the context of the US-led "war on terror". Among activists in the Gulf and the Arabian Peninsula, the "war on terror" has been referred to as "the shirt of Uthman" --- a valid cause used to legitimise injustice. In the words of a Gulf human rights activist, "the war on terror is every despot’s dream come true."
The report makes recommendations.
  • Release anyone detained solely for their non-violent expression and exercise of their belief or ethnic origin;
  • End the legal limbo of all detainees, including those held in undisclosed locations and grant them full access to lawyers, doctors, families and immediate access to the International Committee of the Red Cross;
  • Ensure that all those held are charged and given fair trials or released;
  • Ensure that the detainees are treated humanely and not subjected to torture;
  • Investigate all allegations of torture and bring to justice anyone who is reasonably believed to be responsible;
  • Halt the forcible return of foreign nationals to countries where they would face serious human rights violations;
  • Ensure strict compliance with human rights standards in any security cooperation between states and in all security training programs;
  • Provide adequate support and assistance to families of detainees including the granting of legal aid;
  • Grant AI and other human rights organizations access to detainees and officials in Guantánamo Bay and in the Gulf and the Arabian Peninsula.
Golly. We can't have that.

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