The Russian Foreign Ministry has issued a critical report on human rights in the European Union saying that Europe still faced serious problems, and that member states are avoiding obligations that would change things for the better.
According to the Foreign Ministry, conclusions were made on the basis of serious sources, such as the reports of the United Nations Council for Human Rights, the OSCE, the reports of the Council of Europe’s Human Rights Commissioner and the data provided by rights activists, journalists and NGOs.
The Russian report lists the rise of xenophobia, racism, aggressive nationalism and neo-Nazism as the most acute problems of the European Union. It says that as the region faces the continuing economic crisis it also sees incidents of blatant violations of the rights of minorities, such as refugees and migrants, as well as infringement of citizens’ rights for social protection. The problems also include insufficient protection of children’s rights and gender inequality, the document reads.
Another serious issue is law enforcers overstepping their powers, and the violation of prisoners’rights. Also a number of EU countries continued to participate in the CIA’s secret prisons program, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
Russian diplomats also expressed concern over the number of systematic violations of citizens’ privacy as well as pressure on freedom of speech and the independence of the media.
A large number of EU member-states “prefers not to undertake obligations under basic multi-sided treaties on human rights and even in cases when such obligations are taken they amend the documents with paragraphs negating their meaning” the report reads.
It is still obvious that the system for protecting the basic human rights and freedoms, that is presently being usedin the European Union, remains ineffective and flawed, concludes the Russian Foreign Ministry. It adds that in 2013 there were no positive changes both at the legislative level and in the executive institutions as well as in the sphere of sub-national monitoring.