2008 Report: Democracy Charade Undermines Rights

28 03 2008

URL: http://hrw.org/englishwr2k8/docs/2008/01/31/usint17940.htm. The established democracies are accepting flawed and unfair elections for political expediency, Human Rights Watch said its World Report 2008. By allowing autocrats to pose as democrats, without demanding they uphold the civil and political rights that make democracy meaningful, the United States, the European Union and other influential democracies risk undermining human rights worldwide. States claiming the mantle of democracy, including Kenya and Pakistan, should guarantee the human rights that are central to it, including the rights to free expression, assembly and association, as well as free and fair elections. But in 2007 too many governments, including Bahrain, Jordan, Nigeria, Russia and Thailand, acted as if simply holding a vote is enough to prove a nation “democratic,” and Washington, Brussels and European capitals played along, Human Rights Watch said.

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