The Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs today, May 29, publishes its annual human rights reports. The 2014 reports look at 41 countries in Asia and the Pacific Region.
Overall, much of the region is experiencing very strong economic growth, with hundreds of millions of people being lifted out of poverty. However, countries in the Asia-Pacific region vary greatly in size, living conditions and economic and political outlook. The human rights situation in these countries therefore also varies. Several countries in the region provide strong constitutional protection, which is reflected in strong respect for human rights. However, some countries impose severe restrictions, often in the name of security and counter-terrorism.
The Government would like the release of these reports to draw attention to democracy and human rights work as a cornerstone of Swedish foreign policy. It is the Government’s ambition to mainstream human rights across all areas of foreign policy. We take action through bilateral contacts, through bilateral contacts, through the EU, and multilaterally through the UN, the OSCE and the Council of Europe to promote full respect for human rights in every country around the world. The Swedish Embassies are actively engaged in dialogue with all sectors of the societies in which they operate.
The Swedish Foreign Service first produced these human rights reports twenty years ago. They are the result of collaboration between Sweden’s Embassies, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs Department for International Law, Human Rights and Treaty Law and the relevant geographical department at the Ministry (in this case, the Department for Asia and the Pacific Region). These extensive fact-based reports are useful for the Government, government agencies, the business community, NGOs and the general public.
Words and photo: Swedish Embassy in Jakarta, Facebook.