Universal Human Rights


Sir, - The Council of Europe seems to have a problem with the human rights situation in Grozny, and now Mary Robinson has announced that she will be going there in person. We knew her as a straightforward and unbiased person, I am looking forward now to her reports.

Do the hesitations of the Council of Europe indicate that its members have more of a conscience and sense of proportion than their colleagues in the Security Council of the UN? The US and the UK are still waging an undeclared war against the people of Iraq, killing civilians, shepherds and sheep. Mr Rubin, spokesman for the US, when interviewed by John Pilger (ITV, March 6th) told us that this was necessary to protect the world against Saddam Hussein. A spokesman for the UK justified the bombing raids by saying that their pilots were entitled to use extreme force when attacked. By children throwing rocks or flocks of sheep running amok?

While these atrocities go on, unchallenged, the Security Council meekly bows to pressure from the same two governments and maintains inhuman and entirely unjustified sanctions against the people of Iraq, resulting in the mass slaughter of children and innocent civilians. There is a new genocide going on there, but apart from a few, such as John Pilger, nobody cries shame, stop it now!

Governments acting as puppets babble on about human rights abuses elsewhere in the world. Why is it that they reserve their criticism for Slavs in general, Russian and Serbs in particular, when human rights issues arise? When will we learn the real truth about Kosovo? Why can the US, the UK, Israel, and other "friends" get away with it scot-free? Why did it take so long to stop human rights abuses in Indonesia, and the genocide of East Timor? When will we see the end of all the brainwashing? Plenty of questions. - Yours, etc.,

Fran L. Frison, Killiney, Co Dublin.