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U.S. human rights report draws extensive criticisms

The U.S. State Department's annual country reports on human rights has drawn criticisms from various countries.

Pierre Picquart, an expert on China and Chinese issues at the University of Paris-VIII, said that China has achieved remarkable progress in human rights, while the United States also faces its own human rights problems.

Picquart said although he has not yet read the report, he does appreciate the great achievements China has made over the past few decades, such as the efforts to feed its huge population and to improve health care and education for the Chinese people.

However, on the other side, the latest revelations about the tapping program PRISM and the infamous U.S. prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, have exposed U.S.'s own problems with human rights both domestically and internationally, he told Xinhua.

The Spanish EFE news agency reported Friday that Colombian Vice President Angelino Garzon said the U.S. State Department's release of its 2013 human rights report is blatant interference in the internal affairs of other countries.

Garzon, who is on a visit to Spain, told entrepreneurs and journalists at a luncheon in Madrid that the United States is still judging Colombia with an out-dated vision, and turning a blind eye to considerable headway the country has made in a range of issues including human rights.

Garzon stressed that no one has given the United States authority to judge Colombia's domestic human rights situation and it was interference in the nation's domestic affairs.

The vice president called on governments of all countries and international organizations to view Colombia in modern, forward-looking ways and to appreciate its tremendous effort to uphold democracy, eradicate poverty and develop the economy.

He said that Colombia's human rights policy does not aim to please the United States or the United Nations, but to push for the country's real continuous growth.

In a written statement on Friday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang slammed the U.S. report, saying "the Chinese people have the best say on the issue regarding the human rights situation in China."

The United States always likes to lecture other countries on their internal affairs, but never mention its own problems, said Qin. The United States was adopting double standards, he said.

"China is firmly opposed to using human rights issues to interfere in other countries' internal affairs," the spokesman said.

Meanwhile, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) accused the United States over human rights.

A spokesman of the DPRK Foreign Ministry said the United States was the worst human rights abuser, "who killed innocent people through aggression and intervention, and systematically committed illegal wire-tapping and surveillance against citizens of other countries."

The United States should be brought to an international human rights tribunal, the spokesman was quoted by the official KCNA news agency as saying.

[Source: Xinhua, Beijing, 28Feb14]

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small logoThis document has been published on 03Mar14 by the Equipo Nizkor and Derechos Human Rights. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.