The recent state-sponsored harassment of democracy and human rights organizations in Zimbabwe is a blatant violation of citizens’ fundamental freedoms and threatens the credibility of the upcoming constitutional referendum. Freedom House calls on Zimbabwe’s leaders to end the attacks on civil society and hold accountable those responsible for ordering the raids.
Next Monday, Kenyans will go to the polls for what are regarded as the most important general elections in the country’s history. But these voters face a less than inspiring choice. Regardless of whom they elect, it is doubtful that the process will result in a much-needed transformation of the dominant political culture, which is characterized by ethnic favoritism, widespread corruption, and impunity for human rights violations.
Freedom House is concerned about rising inter-party tensions and pre-election violence during Zambian by-elections and calls on all parties to respect the rule of law and encourage their members to engage in peaceful and lawful campaigning. All stakeholders are obligated to ensure the electoral environment is free from intimidation and violence before truly credible elections can take place.
Freedom House applauds the release of a joint statement today by 44 United Nations member states expressing “serious concern” with the human rights situation in Bahrain and calling on the government to investigate rights abuses and make a real effort to implement reform. The United States’ decision to sign on to the statement was also a welcome development given its resistance to publicly criticizing the regime.