The Arab Federation for Human Rights (AFHR) joins the United Nations and the UN Human Rights Council to commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the Human Rights Day which is celebrated annually on the 10th of December. On this day, the Federation strongly urge all countries in the Arab region and most especially Qatar to respect the rights of its citizens as its obligation under the guiding principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The Human Rights Day was the day the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. December 10th was formally declared the Human Rights Day dates from 1950, after the Assembly passed resolution 423(V) inviting all States and interested organizations to adopt this day of each year as Human Rights Day.
The day is normally marked both by high-level political conferences and meetings and by cultural events and exhibitions dealing with human rights issues. Some groups organize protests on Human Rights Day to alert people of circumstances in parts of the world where human rights are not recognized or respected, or where these rights are not considered to be important.
This year, there has been a year-long campaign to mark the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on December 10th 2017. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is milestone document that proclaimed the absolute rights which everyone is inherently entitled to as a human beings – regardless of race, color, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.
The Arab Federation for Human Rights asserts that human rights are the basic rights or freedoms of everyone. They include our right to live, our right to health, education, freedom of speech and thoughts, and equal rights. But sadly some governments have openly violate the rights of their people and undermine its national human rights laws. They have even gone as far as supporting violent activities such as terrorism that violates the fundamental rights of other citizens in their home country. A good example is Qatar who not only supports and finance terrorism but has equally suppress and persecute peaceful dissidents who voiced their concerns during the Arab boycott due to its support and funding for terrorism.
Since the Arab boycott in June 5th 2017, Qatari authorities have arbitrarily arrested and detained 20 members of the country’s ruling family, raiding houses and palaces, freezing assets, threatening to use of chemical weapons and revoking the nationality of poets, intellectuals and tribal leaders such as Mohammed bin Fattis Al-Marri, Sheikh Taleb bin Mohammed bin Lahem bin Shraim and 54 members of his family, including women and children. These individuals had peacefully criticized Doha’s policies and its contentions with neighboring Gulf and Arab countries.
The Arab Federation for Human Rights reiterates that all these actions are a gross violation of the basic rights and freedoms enshrined in the Universal Declaration for Human Rights and other relevant international treaties. AFHR therefore urges Qatari authorities to immediately cease from their continuous violations of the freedoms and rights of their citizens, especially those related to arbitrary detention, torture and other ill-treatment as well as return the citizenship of all those revoked illegally.
The Arab Federation for Human Rights urges all Arab countries to cooperate with each other to tackle the human rights abuses in the region and to engage in knowledge sharing and best practices in human rights issues. Also, the AFHR calls on the all Arab States to develop strategies on how to uphold the rights of their citizens and most especially empowering women and granting them more rights as that will enable them to achieve greater progress in economic and sustainable development. They should strive to respect their obligations toward the Universal Declaration for Human Rights and they should equally be committed to fight terrorism and extremism in the region which will enable all Arab citizens enjoy their basic human rights as well as to live in peace, tolerance and unity.
Arab Federation for Human Rights
Geneva, December 10th 2017