Tuesday, 10 December 2013

65 years after Universal Declaration of Human Rights, why so many still not free.

Whilst President Obama and our world leaders, attend Nelson Mandela's memorial service, speaking  and praising Mandela as one of the last great liberators of the 20th Century, urging the world to carry on  his legacy in fighting inequality, poverty and discrimination. Let us today remember that today the world observes the 65th International Human Rights Day, commemorating the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) by the United Nations General Assembly.

" All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards another in a spirit of brotherhoood."

I concur  , but today also marks the 12th  year British national Shaker Aamer will have spent in a prison cell without being told why. He is still  not free, and he is far from alone. From Aamer's fellow detainess at Guantanamo,  free expression activists across the globe , in Russian , the U.S.A, China, Iran, Israel, etc etc,  all arbitrally detained prisoners need the advocacy of global citizens  dedicated to impartial justice and universal rights.
The history of injustice  has many parallels in  the United States,  take a look at the case of Leonard Peltier, an American Indian activist who has been in prison for 36 years, wrongfully convicted say many. His case full of holes and irregularities, part of Americas enduring  history  of colonialism of the Native communities in the United States. Evidence of his innocence  has continued to mount, leading organisations such as Amnesty International, as well as notable individuals such as Nobel peace prize winner Desmond Tutu, continue to declare him a political prisoner and call for his release.http://www.leonardpeltier.net/

Leonard Peltier

Poverty, exclusion, and deprivation still spread in equal measures across the globe, the dream of human rights for all unfortunately still more of a dream than an actual reality. The press is still not free in many countries, and dissenters are silenced, too often permanently. People face  unfair trials in at least 54 countries, and freedom of restriction is still restricted  in at least 77 , as well as the use of torture and abuse in at least 81. There are still millions of people in slavery, more than 1 billion without access to clean water.
Then we have Israel, whose persistent human rights violations would not be possible without the complicity  or support of the international community. Because of Israel's systematic discrimination, occupation and colonization, the Palestinian people have faced increased  violations to their right of life, their right to housing and property, their right not to be subjected to torture  to torture, their right to return.
It seems we still have a long long way to go in terms of global human rights, but we should not give up, we should keep on pushing our own individual governments, if we are strong enough to achieve this, encouraging others to do the same. We should not give up, all  our history  is based on change, as a result of people  having pushed hard enough for it.
Without human rights  for all, there can be no justice, without justice there can be no peace. The assertion that "another world is possible," is now an absolute necessity.

No comments:

Post a Comment