UN takes on United States over human rights abuses
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
3/30/2014 (2 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
The United Nations has put the United States under a deeply critical eye, and has taken it to task for many human rights abuses. Among the items in the recent report, officials are critical about the nation's practice of jailing the homeless and sentencing juveniles as adults to life sentences to drone warfare as well as spying by the National Security Agency.
The imprisonment and trying of juveniles as adults -- who are then sentenced to life in prison was one of 26 points of concerns in regards to the U.N.'s report on U.S. human rights abuses.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The report's authors found the U.S. lacking on 25 human rights issues.
"The U.S. is adept at demanding human rights change from other governments while failing to meet international standards itself," José Luis Díaz, Amnesty International's representative at the U.N. said.
Díaz welcomed the U.N.'s recommendations on torture transparency as well as calls for ending the death penalty nationwide. He also called for limiting the use of solitary confinement in U.S. prisons. The U.S. "must implement the recommendations of the Human Rights Committee without delay," Díaz declared.
The report was not entirely negative. The U.N. praised some steps the U.S. government has taken, such as curbing human trafficking and a 2009 ban on Central Intelligence Agency torture and secret detention.
According to the U.N's Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in regards to the use of torture, the reformation of interrogation techniques does not go far enough. He called for an investigation and prosecution of members of the "armed forces and other agents of the U.S. government" allegedly involved in torturing detainees.
Díaz also urged the U.S. to shutter the detention camp at Guantánamo Bay in Cuba and transfer its prisoners.
"The state party [the United States] should ensure that all cases of unlawful killing, torture or other ill-treatment, unlawful detention or enforced disappearance are effectively, independently and impartially investigated, that perpetrators, including, in particular, persons in command positions, are prosecuted and sanctioned and that victims are provided with effective remedies," the report reads.
The U.N. also called on the U.S. to implement protections against the invasion of privacy of individuals by making public laws that allow for surveillance. The U.S. must "reform the current system of oversight over surveillance activities" by involving judicial supervision.
Concerned that "those affected have no access to effective remedies in case of abuse," the U.N. advised the U.S. to create pathways for restitution for people who have been spied on unjustly.
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