WORLD’S WORST REGIMES UNVEILED
Several of the World’s Greatest Human Rights Violators Sit on UN Human Rights Panel
GENEVA, SWITZERLAND, March 31, 2005 — Freedom House today released its annual list of the world’s most repressive regimes at the United Nations Commission on Human Rights. Six are members of the UN body, charged with monitoring and condemning human rights violations.
The report, “The Worst of the Worst: The World’s Most Repressive Societies 2005,” includes detailed summations of the dire human rights situations in Belarus, Burma (Myanmar), China, Cuba, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Haiti, Laos, Libya, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, and Zimbabwe. Chechnya, Tibet, and Western Sahara are included as territories under Russian, Chinese, and Moroccan jurisdictions respectively.
The report is available online.
Significantly, six of the eighteen most repressive governments–those of China, Cuba, Eritrea, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Zimbabwe–are members of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR), representing nearly 11 percent of the 53-member body.
“Repressive governments enjoying CHR membership work in concert and have successfully subverted the Commission’s mandate,” said Freedom House Executive Director Jennifer Windsor. “Rather than serving as the proper international forum for identifying and publicly censuring the world’s most egregious human rights violators, the CHR instead protects abusers, enabling them to sit in judgment of democratic states that honor and respect the rule of law,” she said.