Giuseppe Sandro Mela.
Venerdì scorso la Segreteria di Stato aveva rilasciato il:
Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor. Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2016.
di cui riportiamo la prefazione del Segretario.
«Promoting human rights and democratic governance is a core element of U.S. foreign policy. These values form an essential foundation of stable, secure, and functioning societies. Standing up for human rights and democracy is not just a moral imperative but is in the best interests of the United States in making the world more stable and secure. The 2016 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices (The Human Rights Reports) demonstrate the United States’ unwavering commitment to advancing liberty, human dignity, and global prosperity.
This year marks the 41st year the Department of State has produced annual Human Rights Reports. The United States Congress mandated these reports to provide policymakers with a holistic and accurate accounting of human rights conditions in nearly 200 countries and territories worldwide, including all member states of the United Nations and any country receiving U.S. foreign assistance. The reports cover internationally recognized individual civil, political, and worker rights, as set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international instruments.
The Human Rights Reports reflect the concerted efforts of our embassies and consulates to gather the most accurate information possible. They are prepared by human rights officers at U.S. missions around the world who review information available from a wide variety of civil society, government, and other sources. These reports represent thousands of work-hours as each country team collects and analyzes information. The Department of State strives to make the reports objective and uniform in scope and quality.
The Human Rights Reports are used by the U.S. Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Branches as a resource for shaping policy and guiding decisions, informing diplomatic engagements, and determining the allocation of foreign aid and security sector assistance. The Human Rights Reports are also used throughout the world to inform the work of human rights advocates, lawmakers, academics, businesses, multilateral institutions, and NGOs.
The Department of State hopes these reports will help other governments, civil society leaders, activists, and individuals reflect on the situation of human rights in their respective countries and work to promote accountability for violations and abuses.
Our values are our interests when it comes to human rights. The production of these reports underscores our commitment to freedom, democracy, and the human rights guaranteed to all individuals around the world.
I hereby transmit the Department of State’s Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2016 to the United States Congress.
Rex W. Tillerson
Secretary of State»
«Bush and Obama administrations held ceremonies to announce report, but this year a US official instead takes questions over phone – on condition of anonymity.
The US state department released its annual report on human rights around the world on Friday, but the release was overshadowed by criticism that the secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, gave the report little of the traditional attention or fanfare.
Tillerson declined to unveil the report in person, breaking with precedent established during both Democratic and Republican administrations. A senior US official answered reporters’ questions by phone on condition of anonymity rather than appearing on camera, also a break with precedent.
“The report speaks for itself,” the official said in response to a question about why Tillerson did not unveil it. “We’re very, very proud of it. The facts should really be the story here.”
The report, mandated by Congress, documents human rights conditions in nearly 200 countries and territories and is put together by staff in US embassies. This year’s report was largely completed during Barack Obama’s tenure.» [The Guardian]
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La Segreteria di Stato degli Stati Uniti d’America si occupa, o dovrebbe occuparsi, della conduzione della politica estera della nazione. Un report che esprima considerazioni su nazioni sovrane è un evento di politica estera a carattere unilaterale: la sua pubblicazione potrebbe anche produrre reazioni avverse, sempre che agli Stati Uniti competa il compito di giudicare il mondo.
Già: chi mai avrebbe dato agli Stati Uniti il diritto di giudicare? E sono molte le nazioni che si pongono questo quesito, esattamente come si pongono la domanda se poi l’Occidente rispetti i diritti fondamentali dell’uomo. Infatti, gran parte del resto del mondo la pensa in modo opposto a come la sta pensando l’Occidente.
«Rex Tillerson said he wanted to see facts before criticizing countries such as Saudi Arabia and the Philippines».
È poi così biasimevole che una persona voglia appurare i fatti prima di esprimere giudizi?
Dovrebbe essere evidente che ogni Amministrazione gestisce il proprio comportamnto nel modo che più è sembrato essere conveniente, anche e soprattutto perché è stata vidimata dal suffragio elettorale.
Questo fatto è il grande dimenticato in tutta questa diatriba.
La maggioranza degli Elettori hanno votato per i repubblicani sia alla Camera si a Senato, ed hanno eletto il Presidente Trump conferendogli 304 grandi elettori contro i 227 di Mrs Hillary Clinton. È una differenza schiacciante.
Orbene, in democrazia governa chi riesce ad ottenere la maggioranza dei voti elettorali, non chi perda le elezioni.
Se il Popolo americano avesse desiderato vedere attuata la linea politica di Mrs Clinton, avrebbe votato democratico per Camera e Senato, e Mrs Clinton per la presidenza.
Così non è stato.
Media e liberals democratici desiderano che il Segretario di Stato dia enfasi al Country Reports on Human Rights?
Bene: è loro ragionevole ambizione.
Tra quattro anni, tornando alle urne, conquistino la maggioranza.
Hanno perso le elezioni, e le hanno anche perse male: se ne diano una ragione.
→ Deutsche Welle. 2017-03-04. Tillerson mum as State Department reports rights abuses
The US State Department has documented grave global threats to free speech and assembly. Donald Trump’s Secretary of State has been criticized for skipping the release of his department’s annual rights report.
In his confirmation hearing, Rex Tillerson said he wanted to see facts before criticizing countries such as Saudi Arabia and the Philippines, but, presumably presented with those in the State Department’s annual global rights report on Friday, the new US secretary of state continued to refrain from comment. It is the novice administration’s latest break with diplomatic tradition.
“The report speaks for itself,” an unidentified State Department official told reporters, responding to a question about why Tillerson did not unveil it on Friday.
Sarah Margon, Washington director of Human Rights watch, said Tillerson’s absence “reinforces the message to governments, rights activists and at-risk minorities that the State Department might also be silent on repression, abuse and exploitation.”
The State Department has budgeted $50.1 billion (47 billion euros) for 2017 – about 1 percent of federal spending. Trump, who put a narrow set of domestic interests at the forefront of his campaign, wants cuts across the nondefense portions of the total US budget in order to offset a proposed $54 billion increase in military spending.
‘Authoritarian political system’
Global State Department officials documented growing pressure on media and internet activists for the report, which examines rights conditions in 199 countries and was largely compiled under Barack Obama. The comprehensive report does not single out countries or compare them compare with another, but provides an individual assessment of each examined nation. The US supply weapons and funding to many of the countries criticized every year.
The report casts a dark light on Russia, which Trump administration figures have close ties to. According to the State Department, the nation has made conditions worse across neighboring Ukraine and in Crimea, which Russia poached in 2014. The State Department criticized restricted speech and official discrimination within Russia proper, documenting an “authoritarian political system dominated by President Vladimir Putin.”
The State Department rapped ally Saudi Arabia for “pervasive gender discrimination,” described violations in China, and accused Iran of arbitrarily detaining, torturing and killing people. In the Philippines, the State Department reports, extrajudicial homicides increased “sharply” in recent months: Police and vigilantes “killed more than 6,000 suspected drug dealers and users” since July.
→ The Washington Times. 2017-03-04. Tillerson faces heat as State Dept. issues annual human rights report.
A major review published by the State Department on Friday cited serious “human rights problems” in North Korea, Iran, Russia, China, Cuba, Saudi Arabia, the Philippines, Turkey and a host of other nations — including many with close economic and military ties to Washington.
As it does annually, the review, known as the “Country Reports on Human Rights Practices,” cited political executions, media oppression and other tyrannical activities occurring around the world.
But the low-profile manner in which the State Department chose to present this year’s assessment — the first since President Trump took office — has drawn swift fire from critics, who say Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and the new administration as a whole have missed a key chance to take a public stand on human rights.
Sen. Marco Rubio chastised Mr. Tillerson on Twitter for failing to personally unveil the review to reporters — something previous Republican and Democrat secretaries of state have gone out of their way to do with the goal of drawing as much media attention to the document as possible.
“For 1st time in a long time @StateDept #humanrights report will not be presented by Secretary of State. I hope they reconsider,” Mr. Rubio tweeted Thursday, before the release of the review.
The Florida Republican tempered his criticism Friday, saying on Facebook that while he was “disappointed that the secretary of state did not personally present the latest report, this report remains a critical tool for the U.S. to shed light on foreign governments’ failure to respect the fundamental human rights of their citizens.”
The advocacy group Human Rights First also chided Mr. Tillerson for not publicizing the report.
“Today’s decision by Secretary Tillerson to break with bipartisan tradition and forego a public, senior-level rollout of the Human Rights Reports is yet another troubling indication that the Trump administration intends to abandon U.S. leadership on human rights and universal values,” the group’s senior vice president, Robert G. Berschinski, said in a statement Friday.
“Such a decision sends an unmistakable signal to human rights defenders that the United States may no longer have their back, a message that won’t be lost on abusive governments,” Mr. Berschinski said.
The Trump administration had no immediate comment. But a senior administration official, who spoke on condition of anonymity with reporters Friday, staunchly defended Mr. Tillerson, arguing that the former ExxonMobil CEO was “very clear about our commitment to human rights” during a Senate hearing in January on his nomination to be secretary of state.
“We do not face an ‘either/or’ choice on defending global human rights,” Mr. Tillerson testified at the time, prior to his confirmation. “Our values are our interests when it comes to human rights and humanitarian assistance.”
The senior administration official who spoke with reporters Friday noted that this year’s rights report also included a “secretary’s preface” signed by Mr. Tillerson.
“Standing up for human rights and democracy is not just a moral imperative but is in the best interests of the United States in making the world more stable and secure,” the preface stated, adding that the report itself demonstrates America’s “unwavering commitment to advancing liberty, human dignity and global prosperity.”
Almost every corner of the world
Friday’s review was the 41st produced by the State Department. The document, posted on the department’s website, is a country-by-country assessment of nearly every nation of the world — the U.S. being a notable exception.
While the document cannot force the U.S. government to cut ties or military aid to rights abusers or to impose sanctions upon them, it is generally regarded as a prime source for tracking human rights abuses by governments around the world and often sparks harsh responses from its named targets.
This year’s assessments hit the usual suspects.
On China, the review said government “repression and coercion of organizations and individuals involved in civil and political rights advocacy as well as in public interest and ethnic minority issues remained severe” in 2016.
It also pointed to “torture” in Chinese jails, citing “former prisoners” as saying “they were beaten, subjected to electric shock, forced to sit on stools for hours on end, hung by the wrists, raped, deprived of sleep, force-fed, and otherwise subjected to physical and psychological abuse.”
The “most significant” human rights problems in Iran, meanwhile, stemmed from “severe restrictions on civil liberties,” including the freedoms of assembly, association, speech, religion and press. The review chided the Iranian government for “reportedly commit[ting] arbitrary or unlawful killings, including, most commonly, by execution after arrest and trial without due process.”
Despite much media scrutiny during recent months of the Trump administration’s perceived closeness to Russia, the review also leveled harsh criticism at Moscow.
In addition to asserting that the 2014 annexation of Crimea continues to “affect the human rights situation significantly and negatively,” the review said Russian authorities have “passed repressive laws and selectively employed existing ones to harass, discredit, prosecute, imprison, detain, fine and suppress individuals and organizations critical of the government.”
There was also notably harsh language in this year’s section on the Philippines. The report said so-called extrajudicial killings “increased sharply over the past year” in the nation, where President Rodrigo Duterte’s bare-knuckle war on drugs has drawn criticism from human rights advocates and the international community.
“Since July police and unknown vigilantes have killed more than 6,000 suspected drug dealers and users,” the review said of the situation that has prompted calls for the U.S. to be more careful about aid and weapons transfers to Philippine police.
Mr. Tillerson offered only guarded remarks on the matter during his confirmation hearing in January. The administration official who spoke with reporters Friday suggested it remains a sticky one for the State Department.
“We obviously have a very strong and longstanding alliance with the Philippines and our efforts to promote human rights there are vital to that long term alliance,” the official said, adding that Mr. Tillerson would “continue to review each arms transfer notification for the Philippine police and armed forces on a case by case basis.”
“It’s the right thing not to provide arms to units that are undermining … the value of human life,” the official said.