In a globalized world in which we live today, the advances in science and technology have developed with dizzying and amazing speed. Societies are witnesses of a fabulous expansion of knowledge in all areas, and day by day discoveries are made that can surprise the entire human race. Human rights are by no means foreign to such circumstances and therefore the issues related to them have also undergone a remarkable development and expansion.
In recent years, we have seen how, in addition to being included in the constitutions and laws of most States, they have also upgraded to the international stage by being included in multiple international instruments and by establishing international systems for their protection. However, paradoxically and despite all of the above, we can sadly perceive that in the subject of Human Rights, much remains to be done as violations of the basic human rights proliferating everywhere and the so-called “universality” of Such rights, is not yet a reality around the world.
The countries that least violate human rights – Amnesty International
Countries are, after all, the people and governments that compose them. While governments many times fail to ensure safety and respect of their citizens, there are some others that actually go the extra mile for safeguarding their nationals.
According to independent organizations like Amnesty International, few governments in the world would emerge in a ranking ordering them according to their human rights advocacy. However, on the map made by this organization with data from 2013, we can see that Canada, Sweden, Bolivia, and Uruguay are four of the countries that report the least violations committed by their governments and public institutions:
Amnesty International’s report contains at least 3 human rights violations in 2013. However, there are no violations of freedom of expression, assembly and movement, no allegations of torture and no death penalty. Canada has traditionally been a country that respects human rights. In its very constitution, it has integrated the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, a fundamental document that governs the life of the country in all aspects. The results of this protection are evident: low levels of inequality, control of institutions by citizens and corporate social responsibility regulated by legislation.
As with Canada, the Amnesty International report does not mention violations of any of the enumerated human rights. Yes, it reports a serious case of discrimination, referring to the treatment received by the Romani population of the country. The Swedish Government itself recognizes this in its White Paper, where it self-criticizes these facts and outlines the areas in which they must improve, as well as proposing means and strategies for improvement in this regard. While Sweden is not perfect either, it provides the necessary measures to improve and, above all, displays a transparency that in many ways are a reference throughout the world.
In Bolivia, according to this pro-human rights NGO, there are some cases that would undermine freedom of expression, assembly and free mobility, but as in the previous examples, there is no evidence of torture or bigger issues. Amnesty International acknowledges at least three cases of human rights violations in Bolivia, which, even though it is one of the lowest in the world, the president himself has publicly acknowledged as inadmissible: a clear and evident step in favor of human rights and an example for many others in Latin America.
According to the NGO, Uruguay would be one of the cleanest countries and where the human rights of the entire planet are most respected. No death penalty, no violations of basic freedoms, no torture; yet, there are at least 2 cases in which the rights of individuals, have been violated according to the National Institute of Human Rights and the Ombudsman’s Office. In 2014, according to Human Rights Watch, Uruguay became a benchmark in the protection of human rights in Latin America thanks to the efforts made by the Government and pro-human rights organizations in this regard.
The global index of generosity
It is precisely in this, generosity, the focus of the study carried out by the Charities Aid Foundation, a British NGO dedicated especially to sensitizing people and companies on their social role, on their responsibility with the natural and social environment in which they are developed. The study, published in 2013, was carried out by studying donations to solidarity projects that are developed annually in 153 different countries, also focusing on issues such as the hours dedicated to volunteering and the time spent by each citizen in the helping of others.
According to the ranking of this NGO, almost none of the most solidarity countries coincides with those mentioned before, instead, other countries make the cut:
There is no doubt that there is quite a lot to do in the defense of human rights. But it would not be fair or realistic to deny that there are other ways of valuing human race, as with both the classification of human rights defenders and solidary societies.
It has not been enough to establish and recognize rights through national or international legal instruments to achieve that they have a proper implementation, but it has been necessary to establish institutions, organizations, mechanisms and procedures both internally and internationally to ensure their effective implementation. Thus, in matters of Human Rights, the question is not only the recognition of these but fundamentally and essentially their enforceability and justiciability.
In order to achieve effective protection of human rights, it is necessary to establish procedures through which the rights of individuals are safeguarded, preventing them from being violated and, if they have already been, restored to the enjoyment of human rights. Or be compensated in any way for the damage caused, also sanctioning the State and the persons who cause such violations.
It is necessary that all countries of the world subscribe to human rights treaties, and, above all, to submit to the jurisdiction of international bodies and tribunals. Obviously, the struggle for Human Rights has not ended, and may never end because it is a constant and permanent struggle. Obviously, much remains to be done and it is necessary to continue fighting to achieve peace in a world in which human dignity is respected and human rights are a reality.