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Report: EU efforts to improve world human rights lagging

12th December 2012
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Russian Ambassador to Tanzania, Alexander Rennikh

The Russian Ambassador to Tanzania Alexander Rennikh has handed over a report on human rights situation in the European Union (EU) to the EU ambassador to Tanzania, Ambassador Filiberto Ceriani Sebregondi as part of marking the world human rights day.

The 67-page report, underscores the most pressing human rights issues of; racism, violent nationalism and neo-Nazism, violation of rights of minorities, prisoners, refugees, migrants, and persons with mental illnesses which have been facing the region for the passed year.

Other areas addressed in the report include lack of protection of children, gender inequality, violation of privacy, abuse of power by the police, the situation as to the freedom of mass media and the infringement of social rights of citizens.

“Although the European Union and its members traditionally declare their commitment to the protection and promotion of human rights both on the national and international levels, the situation in this sphere in the EU is still far from perfect,” the report noted.

Citing overcrowded prisons today, it said that was one of the most acute justice-related problems in Belgium… Attention was drawn to that problem in March 2012 after the publication of the reports about the horrible conditions of detention in the Forest prison in Brussels, where cells with capacity of 402 people contained 739 inmates.

The report established however that, the existing system of protection of human rights and freedoms in the EU is not unblemished, neither the EU judicial mechanisms who receives complaints about the activities of supranational institutions.

The report further said that the EU Special Representative for human rights do not cover all the systemic challenges in the area of human rights that the European Union faces today.

It went on to say that neither on the institutional, nor on the legislative level; one of the most sensitive spheres of EU control has been fully developed, is that constant supranational monitoring of cases involving violations of fundamental rights and freedoms by certain member States. “There is a total lack of tools of active response by EU institutions and of prosecution of those responsible,” it added.

According to the report, Russia is ready for a constructive dialogue of equals with the European Union on human rights and democratic development, which would to the full extent correspond to the relations of strategic partnership with the EU.

“This cooperation will gain a lot if our counterparts from the EU abandon their policy of imposing their priorities, stop looking down on the interests of other partners and creating an artificial systematization of international human rights obligations,” it insisted.

SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN