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tv   [untitled]    February 17, 2011 1:30am-2:00am EST

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is now having to lay. it's her first visit here and the u.n. high commissioner for human rights is in russia to check out the situation now it has so far let an air raid of top officials including the president so how does she find the state of affairs here is the u.n. high commissioner for human rights now people like. two years ago russia was trying to qualify for the membership in the un human rights council but a poor record on press freedom civil liberties and etc put paid to its aspirations present that it was a trained lawyer and is actively promoting democratic values in the country during a recent meeting for human rights activists he agreed with many of the proposals it's seen as a good step towards improving the country's human rights record and a precursor for his future membership of the council. thank you very much for being with us it's
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a privilege to have you on the show was great privilege thank you thank you for coming well first of all you have met the president of russia and had a chance to talk to him and as you know. a situation with the police with the militia being transformed into police and big reform going on and the the russian president is very much into this idea of changing changing the way the force works well it was in the beginning of your career if i'm not mistaken you were suing the police and any major name as a lawyer by seeing the police for for misusing the police force so that you had something to offer did you have something to to share with the russians concerning the reform of the police force was not my own experience because we were certainly against the apartheid police who use torture. they detained and tortured my
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husband and that's when we brought court action. here i welcome that the initiative is coming at the highest level from the president on the form and so that i want to watch closely and be very supportive. i think that. his initiative is very good to address the form of the judiciary and the police and the military and many other aspects. hoping that that will be followed through and implemented well the russian public isn't very happy about the way the way the russian police force is implementing the the human rights and it's not always respectful to human rights. the un human rights bodies are going to monitor the the implementation of the new law in russia the. human rights
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council is the premier body which watches out for the protection and promotion of human rights and this body was set up by the un general assembly it's based in geneva and i. the secretary of that body they periodically look at the human rights situation of every country as well as russia the review is done by other member states so the recommendations they make a very important one of them will obviously cover the. the peace and security issues the conduct of police the use of torture and above all that the police should not only be law enforcement but should be a protection agency so it will be a matter that will be subject to the review what are the major problems can you give us work like
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a short list of major problems with human rights in russia that you see while it is my second day here on missions i want to hesitate to bits in forming any conclusions you know that i have full press conference on thursday and that's where i will give my sis ments but nevertheless from what i have seen over two days and talking with. civil society organizations and including the ministers in the government. is that you have very very good laws. but there's a big gap there's a deficit in implementation of these laws if i take for instance the equality principle that's in almost every law and yet i see very few women in positions of power or in decision making. they tell me that they are subject to huge discrimination and they subject to domestic violence so one of the things i will be
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urging is all right you have the equality principle in your basic law so it feels good to have it there what can you do about delivering that on the grounds so that people can see a real difference and one of the ways i'm going to suggest is that i have specialized laws many countries in the world have now passed family violence acts specifically making it a crime you know most countries russia being no exception always treated domestic violence as a. something that happens in the private trial you know if you're here when the police tell the woman complain and if she's the one who's been beaten up they tell her to go on case and make up yeah i've heard this in very many countries so that's that's what i'm watching out for how to support these efforts and we are in
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a position my office we are almost a thousand strong and so we are in a position to to provide the search and material that we provide to almost fifty six countries in the world where we have a presence we're listening to international issues egypt has been making headlines for nearly three weeks now and commenting on the events in egypt prior to mubarak's resignation you said i quote one of the prime drivers of this chaos seems to have been the actions of egypt's security and intelligence services and quote do you insist on calling for an international investigation of this matter we've been sitting on that i will call for an independent investigation it could be a national. because there are. people in egypt they they could be selected by the people themselves so as long as they are
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independent there's no interference from the autonomy i think that they were able to conduct an investigation but above all make recommendations on ethical code of conduct for the security forces we saw a little bit of that which is out in the deaths of almost three hundred peaceful protesters so that's really bad for a country like egypt. but it's combined with the fact that there was a dictatorship for thirty years what i've also pointed out in my press statements is that the. complaints of the people are all to do with human rights it's breath freedom human dignity civil and political rights economic and social rights so human rights and the lack of feet are the bay are the heart of the problems in egypt. but you mentioned the national government the gyptian authorities themselves
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the committee investigating the matter but do you think immersion in government especially. like like in the today could be impartial such an investigation well firstly they're still forming in the government. it's the military who is in command i welcome that they said they're going to. hand over to civil system as soon as possible and hold elections is all good signs but i actually don't know who the authorities are and i don't want to comment on the on the formations the political formations because that's for egyptians to decide what i say to egypt is there are standards and values set up by the international community in very many treaties and these should be their guide on what kind of system of government they would like the root of it they should be democracy and human rights well you have
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visited the middle east recently and you know the situation you've seen it with is do you think that egypt from inside should lift the blockade of the gaza. strip and thus improve the grim humanitarian situation of the should it happen and will it help well you're quite right i sized just saw that three days ago with my own eyes. the blockade i have said is illegal i think that the peace treaty between israel and egypt. secures the copper. nation of egypt even to imposing that blockade it in yemen it's illegal because of it collectively punishes civilians it denies just basic food until cement for instance is not allowed and so they are unable to build houses the houses demolished standing outside in the early is just an absolute necessity. so it's my
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hope that when they address. the maintenance of this peace treaty they will leave you cooperation with regard to the blockade i just met with the gazans i heard for themselves what their hopes and dreams are for some relief from the change in egypt while during your visit to israel and palestine one of the local papers quoted you as saying east jerusalem is being steadily drained of its promise to new habitants in clearcut defiance of the security council resolutions end quote does that mean you will be bringing this issue. at the security council. well i don't have the power to do that its member states can or can bring matters before you can make you've had a militia trying to make this happen you want my word mandate has
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a high commissioner to bring matters like this all to the open not only by way of press statements but by reports we do filed reports. on the occupied territory. almost locked to our reports a year and we support the various commissions such as the goldstone commission that investigated. the operation cast lead attack on gaza flotilla raid so all this is our work in. providing liable reports for the human rights council the general assembly and the security council to take action so mary poway the un high commissioner for human rights spotlighted will be back shortly we will continue this interview in leftover minutes and see where you are going to go.
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was looking for work something. i. welcome back to spotlight i'm now going often just to remind you that my guest on the show today is now the pillay the un high commissioner for human rights not russia is proposing to send a un security council mission to the middle east to save the peace process blocked by israel settlements policy and their activity do you believe this mission. it is
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long overdue and would be helpful what's your opinion while in my meeting with president medvedev i urged him to play a role in the middle east because i have just come from there and i have heard from people from palestinians in will in the west bank in east jerusalem and gaza ha ha the international community should not forget them and of course peace is the . proud everything else flows from the lack of it and israel's major concern is its security and we have to. respect that as well and i think that the russian federation has a very important role to play and i raised the matter with the president because he is he said clea been there i think he was there a few days before me. your excellency another middle east country with
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a situation human rights is iran and has a pretty pretty low human human rights record and you you have already expressed concern over the situation there you said you mentioned the number of those executed including three known to be political dissidents and you said you were planning to visit this country pretty soon and to enter and to try tried to go in depth into the situation there. is really happening i and all these plans are going to be released in time so i received the invitation from the national human rights commission of iran and thereafter it was supported by the government of iran asking me to come as a high commissioner for human rights and observe the human rights situation there and i welcome these because some of the countries simply closed the door to us. but
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i laid down. several preconditions the key one being that we are usually send a prima sion to. to plan the tour and also to advise me on the situation and we just now live agreed to the supreme mission and we're going to be fixing the dates i am going there but i want to make clear is a need for me to go because of a call as well from the people of iran and the very many e-mails and letters and petitions that i received from that country with regard to really many . human rights situations of grave concern ok now i want your comment on a failing that we heard from the u.n. secretary general mr ban ki moon he recently addressed the u.n. human rights council with criticism and here's a quote he said this marty has come under criticism from various quarters for this
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human rights council to fulfill its mandate it must be seen as impartial and fair and quote as the supervisor of the sea would you agree that the human rights council really deserve this criticism i think that it was a reminder rather than a criticism from the secretary general and little mind is to point out to the states that this is their body it's the only mechanism we have. human rights issues pertaining to a country can be addressed and therefore member states should take that job seriously and not just support their friends or criticize their foes they should impartially examine that accord and make recommendations because that's the least that victims of violations in various countries hopeful.
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of the u.s. first even mr byrne given him self well they. give an impression that they'd like to see the un special rapporteur imposed in human rights mr richard falk be fired after he suggested there was what he called the apparent cover up in the two thousand and one terrorist attacks on the united states would what's your position in bed do you share the position of some observers that they will when they say that it's it's sort of a censorship within the us. richard fox is one of our almost forty experts appointed by the human rights council so it's the member states who appoint them they pick them for the expertise it whether they are expertise on torture or water or indigenous populations in this case is a special rapporteur is an expert on israel there are
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a few country specific mandates is being one sedan is the other and what richard falk says each time he delivers he's a report in the human rights council is don't attack me personally. consider the substance of my report so i think it's really a diversion to go after him personally and the views he olds personally they should look at the report because he has carefully documented very serious violations and what we're hoping for is that together member states will address these and urged israel to redress those violations i think that they are experts they are tools very important tools people look forward to them russia has invited some of them like the expert on indigenous peoples who was here. and they are very helpful to governments and to people so the human rights council should respect the. experts
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who live elected so so so you think that what putin. says really deserves more attention than his personality the. same and you know he can be a little removed except by the human rights council that elected him ok now the very very touchy issue the two the issue of. the this so-called multiculturalism which which apparently doesn't work or at least these this is what people are are saying louder and louder in europe merkel now the david cameron and sarkozy so on. are they right what's your comment to that is has it really failed the multiculturalism in europe. look before i answer your question about europe because that's a different context and each country is different let me say. that this is
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what my former president nelson mandela achieved for us in south africa and if he had not. developed this ethos of respecting each other giving space and not just from an a.t.m. in on a religious or racial basis we wouldn't have peace today so now we have peace and democracy because he said certain lines and values i come here to russia and i find that person medvedev is making a rather important statements on multiculturalism it may work in some countries it may not be but it would be very distressing i'm sorry for interrupting he's stressing that the situation in russia is totally different from the situation in europe because russia was an empire and in the multi cultural statements nature not like the the the british the germans get very large in these are important points is making you have one hundred and ninety ethnic groups for instance and he's
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calling for respect for all of ethnicity respect for diversity there are many important human rights principles above all is calling for an interest in a phobic violence which i must say is a problem right going on right now in russia and in many parts of the world so if that's he is his. policy towards dealing with the situation and just getting people to respect each other's human rights i think that i wish him well. from the point of view of human rights while we all of course we all one human rights the idea humor to be observed to work with the work better in the boiling pot quite in the united states like they're all americans or i could cross the. more in canada where multiculturalism well if i judge from what i really read in the papers in the us it works better than in canada do you agree while the melting
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pot is better than multiculturalism while i die what i would say is there are challenges everywhere i just told you how wonderful south africa is it isn't we have xenophobic violence as well i think my answer as a high commissioner for human rights and i'm encouraging that here too on my visit to russia is i think that we have to have human rights education in schools so you build values and respect for one another so there isn't suspicion and discrimination but rather embracing embracing everyone as human beings and a last carbon from you please mr cameron's state when a white person holds objectionable views racist views for instance we rightly condemn them but when equally i'm acceptable views or practices come from someone who isn't white we've been too cautious frankly even fearful to stand up to them do
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you agree with with these words of the british prime minister while these words seem to indicate that they've been very patronizing so far. you have to apply the principle impartially quickly once again let me hold the same mandela he said we will not do to white people what they did to us because we want to build a nation a nice positive message i think that racism should be condemned in all its forms of racism racial discrimination that's why we adopted a very good document not we the states and up to them a good document after the durban world conference on racism and i'm urging all states to implement what they undertook in that document and that is to end racism. discriminations in a phobia in all forms thank you thank you very much your excellency for being with us centuries through mind that my guest in the studio was navi pillay the un high
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commissioner for human rights and that's it for now from all of us here spotlight will be back with more firsthand comments on what's going on in and outside russia until then stay on r.t. and take a thank you thank you thank you very much for that closure talking to you. the
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official. from the. video. and. the palm of your.
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demands for political reform are met with. certainty in the middle east and north africa as the domino effect continues. its border initiatives that will leave our military less capable and less ready to fight. america's top military officials and over their budgets pushing massive cuts to the rest of society. stream is the growth of the flow of saudi money is turning the self-proclaimed republic of kosovo into a training ground for radical. subprogram i'm done you're bushell the under pressure governments of the middle east and north
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african countries by a wave of protests are resorting to force libya where activists have called for a day of anger is the latest to see violence on its streets in buck train security forces child thousands of demonstrators the opposition claims at least two. people died tear gas and rubber bullets were used against those demanding reforms by the country's ruling monarchy yemen has seen six days of unrest over two thousand policemen tried to put down rallies calling on the country's president to go and fresh clashes between pro and anti-government demonstrators have erupted in iran after massive opposition protests on monday left two people dead in egypt where the military has replaced the government at least temporarily strikes are gaining force . looks at whether civilian rule is any closer to reality. mubarak's out the army is in and the question now.

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