BERLIN – EU policy on transition processes and EU tools to promote human rights were the focus of the draft resolution on the Annual Report on Human Rights and Democracy in 2012 and the EU policy in this field passed today by the MEPs in the Committee for Foreign Affairs.
Challenges of transition – fair justice, social rest, respect of rights and freedoms
MEPs remain concerned about the lack of democracy, rule of law, fundamental freedoms and respect for human rights in Belarus and about the instances of selective justices in certain Eastern Neighbourhood countries. The call for a rapid return to democratic process in Egypt and emphasise that humanitarian assistance to those in need of basic goods and services in Syria and its neighbour must be an immediate priority for the international community and the European Union.
MEPs call for the release of political prisoners in Russia and deplore the political use of justice. They also call on the Council to adopt a decision establishing a common EU list of officials involved in the death of Sergei Magnitsky, adding that targeted sanctions should be imposed on those officials.
“An international and independent committee of enquiry should be established to investigate the circumstances in which the Cuban human rights defenders and peaceful dissidents, Oswaldo Paya Sardinas (Sakharov laureate 2002) and Harold Cepero died in July 2012”, say MEPs.
MEPs express further their support for the internal demand of the Chinese people of their basic freedoms and rights to which they are entitled to and urge the Chinese authorities to engage seriously with the Tibetan people to assess the deep causes of the high number of self-immolations.
Business and human rights
MEPs voted a new section in the draft resolution emphasising the importance of the Corporate Social Responsibility also in business operations outside the EU and its insurance along the supply chain. “The European companies should ensure that their activities respect human rights standards also when operating outside the EU”, they add.