Here’s a nice short audio slideshow done for Human Rights Day by the BBC. They interviewed Kenneth Roth, the Executive Director of Human Rights Watch. The organization has recently called for president elect Obama to undo damage caused by the policies of the Bush Administration in their war on terror. Human Rights Watch also said that China broke promises to Olympic organizers. The full report can be found here. Video from the press conference can also be found on their website.
In somewhat related news, on Human Rights Day, Chinese scholars signed Charter 08 which calls for a radical overhaul of China’s political system by introducing elections, a new constitution and an independent judiciary according to the BBC. Ever since they signed the document, they have been detained by the police, questioned, and monitored by authorities. China seems to want silence any reforms.
In the article, journalist Li Datong justifies signing the document despite knowing the consequences of his actions by saying, “Change requires ordinary citizens, particularly intellectuals, to speak out. This will slowly influence the government.” This statement applies to all of us. Hopefully, we will learn from Li and stand up for what we believe in.