Russia scolds United States for human rights abuse

Moscow`s report on torture and abuse by the US govt seeks to undermine US` stance as a global judge of human rights.

Last Updated: Dec 28, 2011, 23:07 PM IST

Moscow: Russia sought to undermine the authority of the United States as a global judge of human rights on Wednesday with Moscow`s first report to detail allegations of torture, phone tapping and abuse by the US government.

Criticising the United States for double standards, Russia said President Barack Obama had failed to shut the military prison at Guantanamo Bay and accused the White House of sheltering officials and CIA operatives from prosecution.

The Foreign Ministry`s report "On the situation with human rights in a host of world states," follows China`s example in highlighting US failings in an attempt to counter US State Department criticism of domestic human rights abuses.

"The situation in the United States is far from the ideals proclaimed by Washington," Russia`s foreign ministry said in a 63-page report posted on its www.mid.ru Web site. "The main unresolved problem is the odious prison in Guantanamo Bay."

"The White House and the Justice Department shelter from prosecution CIA operatives and highly placed officials who are responsible for mass and flagrant breaches of human rights," it said.

Every year since 1976, the US Department of State has published a detailed report on the state of human rights in the world, often with scathing analyses of abuses in China and Russia.

Washington scolded Russia for "governmental and societal human rights problems and abuses during the year" in its report published in April.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton angered Prime Minister Vladimir Putin this month by suggesting that Russia`s parliamentary elections were neither free nor fair.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton angered Prime Minister Vladimir Putin this month by suggesting that Russia`s parliamentary elections were neither free nor fair.

Russia`s counter-report is unlikely to harm ties with its former Cold War foe, though Obama`s attempt to forge more friendly ties with the Kremlin has cooled since Vladimir Putin said in September he planned to run in the March presidential election.

Russia also criticised European Union countries for the treatment of religious minorities and Britain in particular for breaching human rights in the wake of August`s riots.

The report focused on the United States and European countries, mentioning China only once and then in passing.

Bureau Report