Peace, Conflict, and Human Rights

Primary Sources

UN Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic

The UN Human Rights Council issued this report on Syria on November 23, 2011. It states that "gross violations of human rights have been committed by Syrian military and security forces since the beginning of the protests in March 2011." On March 4, 2014, the commission released its seventh report (A/HRC/25/65) and states that sieges of civilian areas are leading to mass casualties and starvation in Syria.

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Ask CFR Experts

Why is the world unable to eliminate child- and sex-slavery?

Asked by Valiant Clapper, from University of South Africa
Author: Mark P. Lagon

A 2012 International Labor Organization study found that at least 20.9 million people are victims of forced labor and human trafficking. One quarter, or 5.5 million, are children. Of the 18.7 million in the private economy (minus the 2.2 million exploited by states or armed rebels), 4.5 million, are victimized primarily for sex.

Read full answer

See more in Global; Human Trafficking

Op-Ed

Egypt's 2011 Uprising is a Cautionary Tale for Ukraine

Author: Steven A. Cook
Fortune.com

"Although comparisons between Egypt's 2011 uprising and the recent turmoil in Ukraine are largely unwarranted, CFR's Steven A. Cook writes that there is an important lesson for Ukraine in the Egyptian experience: the need for simultaneous economic and democratic reforms to achieve both political stability and economic prosperity."

See more in Ukraine; Egypt; Peace, Conflict, and Human Rights

Primary Sources

Department of State: Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

These reports, mandated by Congress in the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 and the Trade Act of 1974, describe the performance of other governments in practicing their international commitments on civil, political, individual, and worker rights, as defined by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The UN and the Chinese government produce similar reports.

See more in Human Rights; Global; United States

Op-Ed

For Obama, Few Options in Syria

Author: Gayle Tzemach Lemmon
Defense One

As Washington remains reluctant to take strong action in Syria, Gayle T. Lemmon discusses the limited interventions under consideration for U.S. intervention, including counterterrorism operations inside Syria, increased arms distribution to moderate rebels, and humanitarian aid.

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Transcript

Media Call: What's Next for Ukraine?

Speakers: Stephen Sestanovich, Alexander Motyl, and Robert McMahon

Experts discuss recent developments regarding uprisings in Ukraine. Over the past couple of months, there has been an increase in confrontation with the government which has resultred in violent protests in Ukraine, and specifically in Kiev. Stephen Sestanovich, Alexander Motyl, and Robert McMahon discuss Russia and Putin's role, the current state of Ukraine, and its future.

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Audio

Media Call on Ukraine with Stephen Sestanovich and Alexander Motyl

Stephen Sestanovich, Senior Fellow for Russian and Eurasian Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and previously ambassador-at-large for the former Soviet Union, and Alexander J. Motyl, professor of political science at Rutgers University–Newark, discuss the consequences of the protests in Ukraine for the country, the region, and the United States.

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Policy Innovation Memorandum No. 41

Countering Terrorism

Author: Charles E. Berger

Charles Berger argues that the United States should fund the establishment of a permanent terrorist rehabilitation institution in Yemen, providing a critical counterterrorism partner with a needed strategic capability to counter al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and forming the cornerstone of a strengthened intelligence-sharing relationship.

See more in Yemen; Radicalization and Extremism; Terrorism

Primary Sources

Report of the UN Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

On 21 March 2013, the United Nations Human Rights Council established the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) through resolution A/HRC/RES/22/13. The commission investigated "the systematic, widespread and grave violations of human rights" in North Korea and released a report on February 17, 2014 of their findings.

See more in North Korea; Human Rights