Thursday, April 26, 2007

UN Reports Bleak Human Rights Situation in Iraq

The latest Human Rights Report from the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) details rampant violations of human rights standards in Iraq. The UN also assessment takes issue with the Bush Administration claim that the surge has improved the situation in Baghdad.

The Report complains of frequent failures of the Iraqi government to conform to international humanitarian and human rights laws. UNAMI reports that large numbers of Iraqis, among them professional groups and law enforcement personnel, continued to experience intimidation and killings. It also notes continued political interference in the affairs of the judiciary.

The Report describes the deterioration of freedom of expression, affecting media, religious and ethnic minorities, and professional-groups, including academics who are continuously targeted by religious extremists and armed groups in all areas of Iraq.

It outlines the key human rights concerns relating to detention and internment by US and Iraqi forces, lack of judicial oversight and treatment of detainees and prisoners and expresses UNAMI's concern over the apparent lack of judicial guarantees in the handling of suspects arrested in the context of the new Baghdad Security Plan (a/k/a the "Surge"). According to the UN Report, violence in Baghdad has not been reduced since the Surge began.

However, unlike previous reports, this one does not contain official statistics for civilian casualties of the violence in Iraq. This is because the Iraqi Government decided, without explanation, to stop providing the information.

Further Reading:

Reuters: U.N. raps Iraq for holding back death toll figures
Courier Mail: Iraq concealing casualty figures: UN
Reuters: U.N. criticises Iraq's Kurdistan on press freedom
Int'l Herald Tribune: UN report: Baghdad security operation has not reduced violence in capital
Shanghai Daily: UN: Security in Baghdad wasn't improved
WaPo: U.N. Report on Human Rights in Iraq Draws U.S. Denunciation
AP: U.N. and Iraq dispute casualty count
Vancover Province: Tories march into Afghan torture trap
BBC News: UN criticises Iraq human rights
Independent: Iraq concealing casualty figures: UN
AP: Attacker targets volatile Iraq province
Deutsche Presse-Agentur: UN rebukes Iraqi Government for witholding death statistics
Earth Times: UN rebukes Iraqi Government for witholding death statistics
Aljazeera: UN slams Iraq’s human rights
Turkish Press: UN criticises Iraq for concealing casualty figures
Guardian: UN claims Iraq underplays civilian death toll
VOA: Iraqi Government Criticizes New UN Human Rights Report on Iraq
VOA: UN Report Criticizes Iraq on Human Rights
Chicago Tribune: Iraq won't give casualty figures to UN
Turkish Weekly: Civil Tragedy in Iraq
NYTimes: U.N. Report Criticizes Iraq on Detainees’ Treatment
USA Today: U.N. says plight of Iraqis worsens; Study clashes with general's appraisal
LATimes: Iraq withholds death toll, but estimate is in thousands
AP: U.N. criticizes Kurdish authorities

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