In addition to chiding the U.S., Human Rights Watch condemned Afghanistan, Israel, Sudan, India and Afghanistan and Palestinian security forces. Pictured above, protesters in Washington, D.C.
It is unsurprising that a group like Human Rights Watch has condemned the Bush government for jettisoning the U.S. role as a defender of global human rights: Numerous examples—Guantanamo, gay marriage, Iraq, etc.—accentuate this failure.
Obama has said that closing Guantanamo Bay is a “priority.”
Governments indulging in abuse and repression, including the US, are avoiding human rights legislation and international justice by hiding behind the principle of national sovereignty, Human Rights Watch (HRW) warns in a report today.
Abusive practices throughout the world, including Afghanistan, Israel, and the occupied Palestinian territories, has got worse as governments cling to the concept of non-interference. The US, specifically by secretly rendering prisoners to Guantánamo Bay, has abdicated its traditional role as defender of human rights, it adds.
The 546-page report, the latest annual survey by HRW, says Barack Obama’s administration will have to put human rights at the heart of foreign, domestic and security policy if it is to undo what it calls “the enormous damage” of the George Bush years.