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FCO Human Rights and Democracy Report 2010

FCO Human Rights and Democracy Report 2010

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Published by Global News Agency
Today the Foreign Secretary, William Hague, has published Human Rights and Democracy: The 2010 Foreign & Commonwealth Office Report, available online at www.fco.gov.uk/hrdreport.
Today the Foreign Secretary, William Hague, has published Human Rights and Democracy: The 2010 Foreign & Commonwealth Office Report, available online at www.fco.gov.uk/hrdreport.

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Published by: Global News Agency on Apr 01, 2011
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04/01/2011

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FCO : Press Release: Thursday 31 March 2011
_________________________________________________________________ 
 
Foreign Secretary launches 2010 Human Rights and Democracy Report
Today the Foreign Secretary, William Hague, has published
Human Rights and Democracy: The 2010 Foreign & Commonwealth Office Report 
, available online atwww.fco.gov.uk/hrdreport
.
 The report is a comprehensive look at human rights work of the Foreign & CommonwealthOffice (FCO) around the world in 2010. It highlights the UK’s human rights concerns onkey issues and countries of concern and is a further concrete demonstration of the ForeignSecretary’s commitment to strengthening the FCO's work on human rights at home andoverseas.The report is more comprehensive than previous years, is being hosted online to make itmuch more accessible to the public and the website will include updates every threemonths to highlight key human rights events and actions that take place in each of thefeatured countries of concern. The update for the first three months of 2011 will bepublished today. People will be able to comment on the report and share and host thesections of the report that interest them on their own websites. The report informsParliament, NGOs and the general public about our work on human rights and enablesthem to hold us to account for our policy and activities.Speaking at the launch at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office today, the ForeignSecretary said:
Our government promised from the outset a foreign policy that will always havesupport for human rights and poverty reduction at its irreducible core. It is not in our character as a nation to have a foreign policy without a conscience, and neither is it in our interests: The belief in political and economic freedom, in human rights and inthe rule of law, are part of our national DNA. Where human rights abuses gounchecked our security and our prosperity suffers.” 
We have to work with the grain of other societies, while always standing up for universal human rights. This will continue to be our approach. It is one that is fully 
 
consistent with our efforts to strengthen links between our economy and those of the emerging economic powers. We have to persuade such governments tochange, we have to make the case that it will become ever harder for undemocratic governments to deny their people basic freedoms…The uprisings in the MiddleEast and North Africa demonstrate the huge consequences of suppressing people’sbasic and fundamental rights, and are just the start of a process which will no doubt lead to similar demands elsewhere in the world. This is therefore an important hour for these issues.
On Libya:
 
Britain and its allies have intervened in Libya to save lives, to prevent ahumanitarian catastrophe and to give the Libyan people a chance to determine their own future. It is action that is legal, necessary and right. We led the drive to refer Libya to the International Criminal Court and to suspend it from the UN HumanRights Council, so that those responsible for atrocities know that there will be a day of reckoning. Today, we are pressing for full and immediate access to Libya for ICC investigators and the Human Rights Council’s Commission of Inquiry. The Qadhafi regime has lost all legitimacy, and today, I renew our calls for those remaining around him to abandon him and to unite in support of a better future of their country.” 
On Musa Kusa:
 
I can confirm, as we did last night, that the Libyan Foreign Minister, Musa Kusa,arrived at Farnborough Airport yesterday from Tunisia. He travelled here under hisown free will, he said that he is resigning his post. We’re discussing this with himand we will release further details.
We encourage those around Qadhafi to abandon him and embrace the better future for Libya that allows political transition and real reform, that meets theaspirations of the Libyan people.” 
 
On the uprisings in the Middle East:
The torrent of change, hope and optimism flooding large parts of the Middle East today puts paid once and for all to the myth that the Arab world is the one regionimmune from these aspirations. Their voices must be heard.
Our message to all governments of the region is that without change, legitimategrievances and demands for human rights and political freedom will not go away.
If change can be achieved peacefully in the Middle East it will be the biggest advance of democratic freedoms since the collapse of communism in Eastern
 
Europe. If it cannot, we are likely to see turmoil and unrest which sets back thecause of democracy and human rights. That is why our response to these eventsmust be bold, ambitious and historic, in its nature and scale...The eyes of the world are on the Arab world today. But this must not diminish our efforts to defend humanrights elsewhere, in countries flagged up by this report.” 
On Iran:
Our report concludes that the human rights situation in Iran is bleaker now than at any other time in the last decade; with more executions per capita than any other country and more jailed journalists than anywhere else in the world. We continue towork hard with other countries to highlight and take action against human rightsabuses in Iran. Last week, the EU announced that it will seek swiftly to imposesanctions against individuals in Iran responsible for egregious human rightsabuses, and the UN created a new Special Rapporteur on human rights in Iran.” 
On Burma:
 
In Burma, the welcome release of Aung San Suu Kyi has not led to animprovement in the human rights situation there or greater political openness.Britain played an important role in securing the toughest and most comprehensivehuman rights resolution on Burma to date at the UN General Assembly inNovember.” 
On North Korea:
 
In 2010 serious human rights violations continued in North Korea; defectors fromthe country paint a picture of a place where torture, inhumane treatment and severerestrictions to freedom of speech, movement and assembly are routine.” 
On China:
 
The report finds that there was no significant progress on civil and political rights inChina in 2010. We remain committed to engagement with China on human rights.China has made progress on improving economic and social conditions, lifting nearly half a billion people out of poverty between 1990 and 2005. But thedevelopment of independent civil society and application of human rights under therule of law are essential prerequisites for China’s long-term prosperity and sustainable growth.” 
On Belarus:
 
The inclusion of Belarus is a reminder that we cannot be complacent about thehuman rights situation closer to home. The human rights situation there is probably 

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