The World, and Congress, Have an Interest in What Happens in Hong Kong
Mike Gonzalez, FORBES
China is a rising power—economically, militarily and culturally. The world therefore has an interest in ensuring that its leaders understand the value of keeping commitments and adhering to the rule of law. That was the message brought to Washington this week by the courageous leader of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement, a 20-year-old college student named Joshua Wong.
Cuba Pardons 787 Prisoners after Pope’s Call for Mercy
Cuba has pardoned 787 convicts in response to Pope Francis’s Holy Year call to all heads of state for acts of clemency. The Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation said it had not received any reports of what it views as political prisoners being freed. The organization estimates that Cuba is holding around 100 political prisoners. Cuban dissidents have said they are often targeted by authorities, most often detained for days, for voicing opinions opposing the government.
UN Committee Passes North Korea Human Rights Resolution
THE KOREA TIMES
The Third Committee of the UN General Assembly passed a North Korean human rights resolution Tuesday that calls for referring the situation to the International Criminal Court and expresses serious concerns about Pyongyang’s labor exports. This year’s resolution blamed the North’s “leadership” for human rights abuses. It also expresses “very serious concern” at “the exploitation of workers sent abroad from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to work under conditions that reportedly amount to forced labor.”
US Criticizes Russia For Blocking LinkedIn
RADIO FREE EUROPE
The United States government is “deeply concerned” about Moscow’s decision to block the US-based professional-networking site LinkedIn. Maria Olson, a spokeswoman for the US Embassy in Moscow, told the TASS news agency on November 18 that the decision “sets a troubling precedent that could be used to justify shutting down any website that contains Russian user data.”
UN Watch Report Calls on Ban Ki-Moon to Investigate “Fraud on a Massive Scale”
UN chief Ban Ki-moon and human rights high commissioner Zeid Hussein are being called on by UN Watch to investigate how their officials allowed Venezuela to commit “fraud on a massive scale” to influence today’s UN review of the country’s human rights record by using hundreds of “front groups” to submit comments favorable to the regime, the watchdog group reported. “The result is that the review today of Venezuela’s human rights record is being conducted based on a massive amount of manifestly false information,” concludes the report.