Archive for January, 2011

Out of the same mouth

January 31, 2011 1 comment

Dec 23, 2010

Today’s special session of the Human Rights Council concerning the ongoing crisis in Cote d’Ivoire underscored the international community’s commitment to ensure respect for human rights and to address serious abuses. We applaud the African Group for leading this session.

The United States joins the international community in condemning the growing violence, the grave human rights violations, and the deterioration of security in Cote d’Ivoire. We stand with the Council in calling for the immediate end to the violence and other abuses, and we will work to hold those responsible for these human rights violations accountable.

When the United States joined the Human Rights Council, we promised to work from within to improve its effectiveness as we strive to achieve our common goals. Today’s special session exemplifies this new approach and reaffirms that the Council has an important role to play on all issues where human rights are in question.

President Alassane Dramane Ouattara is the legitimately elected and internationally recognized leader of Cote d’Ivoire. We reiterate our call for former President Laurent Gbagbo to step down immediately. The rights of the Ivoirian people can only be fully realized when democracy is respected and the rule of law restored in Cote d’Ivoire.

Jan 28, 2011

We continue to monitor the situation very closely. We are deeply concerned about the use of violence by Egyptian police and security forces against protesters, and we call on the Egyptian government to do everything in its power to restrain the security forces.

At the same time, protesters should also refrain from violence and express themselves peacefully.

As we have repeatedly said, we support the universal human rights of the Egyptian people, including the right to freedom of expression, of association and of assembly.

We urge the Egyptian authorities to allow peaceful protests and to reverse the unprecedented steps it has taken to cut off communications.

These protests underscore that there are deep grievances within Egyptian society, and the Egyptian government needs to understand that violence will not make these grievances go away.

As President Obama said yesterday, reform is absolutely critical to the well-being of Egypt. Egypt has long been an important partner of the United States on a range of regional issues. As a partner, we strongly believe that the Egyptian government needs to engage immediately with the Egyptian people in implementing needed economic, political and social reforms.

We continue to raise with the Egyptian government, as we do with other governments in the region, the imperative for reform and greater openness and participation to provide a better future for all.

We want to partner with the Egyptian people and their government to realize their aspirations to live in a democratic society that respects basic human rights.

When I was recently in the region, I met with a wide range of civil society groups, and I heard from them about ideas they have that would improve their countries.

The people of the Middle East, like people everywhere, are seeking a chance to contribute and to have a role in the decisions that will shape their lives.

As I said in Doha, leaders need to respond to these aspirations. And to help build that better future for all, they need to view civil society as their partner, not as a threat.

Ladies and gentlemen, Hillary Rodham Clinton.