Double standards blamed for human rights violations


Amnesty International Director for West and Central Africa, Samira Daoud. Photo by Twitter

Africa Editor
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – AN international human rights group has slammed double standards throughout the world on human rights.

Amnesty International also decried the failure of the international community to unite around consistently applied human liberties and universal values to protect rights.

As the Universal Declaration of Human Rights turns 75, the organisation insisted that a rules-based international system must be founded on human rights and applied to everyone, everywhere.

Amnesty International Report 2022/23: The State of the World’s Human Rights found double standards and inadequate responses to human rights abuses fuelled impunity and instability.

It also indicated that recovery efforts from the COVID-19 pandemic were hindered by conflicts, economic shocks arising from Russia’s military operation in Ukraine including extreme weather conditions, exacerbated by climate change.

Consequently, the rights of millions of people to food, health and an adequate standard of living were seriously undermined across the African continent.

“While the international community’s attention shifted to Ukraine, Africa continued to suffer from the scourge of conflict, which continued to cause suffering and mass displacements of people,” said Samira Daoud, Amnesty International’s Director for West and Central Africa.

This is in countries such as Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic (CAR), Ethiopia, Mali, Mozambique and South Sudan.

Daud noted Africa was already facing a long, slow recovery from COVID-19 but the ongoing war in Ukraine has resulted in a spike in global oil prices, which has driven the cost of commodities higher, making it difficult for ordinary people to afford food and basic necessities.

“Many people are barely surviving in fragile economies such as Zimbabwe, Liberia and South Sudan and this has compromised people’s socio-economic rights.”

Amnesty lamented “shameless failure of leadership” as having paved way for further abuses in 2022.

The war in Ukraine triggered one of Europe’s worst humanitarian and human rights emergencies in recent history, but the rights body bemoaned the “terrible failure of leadership” to resolve the conflicts.

In 2022, the African Union celebrated the 20th anniversary of its founding and establishment. It was a year in which the continental body was expected to double down on its responses to crises and the fight against impunity.

However, Amnesty said the AU’s response to grave violations and abuses of human rights committed in conflicts across the region was “either absent or timid at best.”

– CAJ News

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