< Viewpoints

2006 Viewpoints

"Xenophobia: a shameful face of Europe"
[18/12/06] In his latest Viewpoint, the Commissioner discusses the increasing threat of Xenophobia in Europe, drawing attention to the recent findings of the EU Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia, of ODIHR and the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI).
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"HIV infected persons should be supported, not discriminated against"

[01/12/06] In his latest Viewpoint, the Commissioner discusses the grave health crisis that the HIV/ AIDS epidemic has triggered in some European countries. He also argues that there is a serious human rights dimension to the pandemic, as carriers often become victims of discrimination in the areas of medical assistance, education, and labour market opportunities.
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"Why domestic violence is not only a women’s issue”
[24/11/06] On the occasion of the launch of the Council of Europe campaign aimed at stopping domestic violence against women, Commissioner Thomas Hammarberg draws attention to the many different aspects of life where gender-based discrimination is still very alive.
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"Human rights defenders must be able to criticise"
[13/11/06] In this Viewpoint, Commissioner Thomas Hammarberg draws attention to the continuing dynamic of governmental attacks on non-governmental human rights groups, journalists and even ombudsmen, and reminds of the importance of the UN declaration on human rights defenders.
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“Seeking asylum is a human right, not a crime”
[30/10/06] As immigration and asylum policies are becoming stricter in Europe, Commissioner Hammarberg emphasises the need to protect the right to political asylum, and stresses the importance of continued discussion on refugee protection issues.
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"Social rights require adequate protection in Europe too"
[16/10/06 16:00] On the eve of the National Day for the Eradication of Poverty, the Commissioner for Human Rights welcomes the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to the founder of a bank which grants loans to the destitute in Bangladesh. He also explains why it is of utmost importance to strengthen social rights in Europe.
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"It is high time to make human rights a reality"
[03/10/06] In his Viewpoint, the Commissioner argues that more energy should be directed toward the effective implementation of human rights standards. Governments need to work out a more comprehensive strategy to ensure the full realization of the human rights treaties – not least the European Convention on Human Rights and the Revised Social Charter.
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"Ombudsmen are key defenders of human rights – their independence must be respected"
[18/09/06] The Commissioner for Human Rights discusses the importance of guaranteeing the independence of ombudsman institutions across the Council of Europe region.
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"Forced eviction of Roma families must stop"

[0409/06] Concerned over several forced evictions of Roma in Europe during the summer, the Commissioner for Human Rights stresses the need to respect the housing rights of Roma in effective consultation with the Roma themselves.

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"Europe should remain a death penalty-free zone"
[21/08/06] In this Viewpoint, the Commissioner for Human Rights reiterates that Europe must remain a death penalty-free zone, and argues that the reference to the death penalty in the European Convention on Human Rights has now become redundant.

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"People with disabilities have the right to be fully-fledged members of society"
[07/08/06] The Commissioner for Human Rights calls for an effective respect for the rights of people with disabilities.

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 "Gay Prides marches should be allowed-and protected"
[24/07/06] Concerned over the banning of the Gay Pride parade in Latvia's capital Riga, the Commissioner for Human Rights stresses that state authorities have a duty and a responsibility to protect peaceful demonstrations on sexual minority rights.

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"The Guantánamo scandal is also our concern"
[10/07/06] In this Viewpoint, Thomas Hammarberg underlines the fact that the Guantánamo scandal is also a European issue, not least because some of the inmates are citizens of European countries but also because it has been difficult for their governments to defend them.

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"Torture can never, ever be accepted"

[27/06/06] Since September 2001, international standards against torture have been sevely undermined. Thomas Hammaberg firmly underlines that torture is without exception a major human rights violation and points out to the responsibility of the governments to enforce this principle.

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"Every country should be monitored – and should welcome that"
[12/06/06] The resolution which created the UN Human Rights Council, which takes from the Commission on Human Rights, requires a periodic, universal review of the fulfilment of human rights obligations in all countries. In this viewpoint, the Commissioner for Human Rights comments on this newly-established body and calls for a "genuine implementation" of countries' monitoring principles.

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"Migrants should not be denied their human rights"

[30/05/06]

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"Religious leaders needed for rights cause"

[15/05/06]

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"Women are still abused, discriminated and denied fair political influence"

[02/05/06]

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"The Council of Europe protocol against discrimination is important"

[18/04/06]

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"Fight terrorism by legal means"

[03/04/06]

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