European Union External Action

Human rights and democracy in the world: EU annual report 2018 adopted

13/05/2019 - 16:22
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At a time when human rights are challenged on a daily basis with many attempts to undermine the universality and indivisibility of human rights, the EU has remained at the forefront of the protection and promotion of human rights and democracy, be it in international forums, bilaterally with governments or through concrete support to the civil society.

human rights

Today, the EU adopted the 2018 Annual Report on Human Rights and Democracy in the world.

This report provides a snapshot of the EU’s engagement and actions in 2018, ranging from the flagship campaigns like the one for the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, or the launch of the Good Human Rights Stories Initiative at the United Nations, to focused actions which benefit local communities in Bangui, Tijuana, Manila or Beirut.

The report focuses on thematic issues using country-specific examples and aims to be useful for all interlocutors.

In her forward to the report, the High Representative Federica Mogherini stressed: Some of the stories presented in this report are about small victories for a few people. Others concern new laws and constitutions, which have extended rights to millions of people. But they all have something in common: they show that when we expand rights for some, the whole of society benefits from it.

Growing threats to democracy and the rules-based international order feature prominently in the report as well. The EU has focused on developing effective ways to address negative trends such as shrinking space for civil society, disinformation campaigns, threats and violations against journalists and other media workers.

Even though the report highlights a difficult situation for human rights worldwide, there is much evidence that confirms that respect for human rights, promotion of good governance and inclusive and democratic societies, together with support to a vibrant civil society, are the best ways to guarantee sustainable security, stability and prosperity in countries. There is no sustainable security without human rights for all.