Lords debates government policy on countries which violate its citizen's human rights
The heads of several charities and organisations, including UNICEF UK and the Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust, and a former Attorney General, will debate the Government's policy towards countries which violate its citizen's human rights, on Thursday 21 November
Lord Alton of Liverpool, who tabled and will open the debate, said:
“The United Nations Declaration of Human Rights is a document which is rich in prose but continually dishonoured in many countries today, 65 years after its adoption.
“Basic human rights are regularly violated across the world with people being killed, imprisoned, tortured, forced into labour, trafficked, sexually abused, displaced and disappeared simply for expressing their views openly or wearing, or saying, the wrong thing at the wrong time.
“I want this debate to highlight the human rights abuses that are an everyday occurrence in countries such as Nigeria, Burma, North Korea, Saudi Arabia and Iran, and talk about what practical steps can be taken to bring about change for millions of people for whom the words of the Universal Human Rights Declaration don't match their reality.”
Other Members scheduled to speak include:
- Baroness Berridge, member of the Joint Committee on Human Rights;
- Lord Triesman, Shadow Spokesperson on Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs;
- Lord Anderson of Swansea, former Shadow Spokesperson for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs;
- Baroness Cox, Chief Executive of the Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust (Hart);
- Lord Hastings of Scarisbrick, Vice President of UNICEF UK and Chairman of Millennium Promise UK;
- Baroness Scotland of Asthal, former Attorney General and Founder of the Eliminate Domestic Violence Global Coalition; and
- Lord Hannay of Chiswick, former diplomat and Chairman of the Lords EU Sub Committee on Home Affairs, Health and Education.
Lord Cormack, the Bishop of Derby, Lord Harries of Pentregarth, Lord Parekh, the Earl of Sandwich, Lord Selkirk of Douglas, the Bishop of Wakefield, Lord Clarke of Hampstead, Baroness Falkner of Margravine, Lord Patten and Lord Singh of Wimbledon are also expected to take part.
Lord Finkelstein, Baroness Kennedy of Cradley, Baroness Suttie and Lord Mendelsohn are expected to make their maiden speeches during this debate.
Baroness Warsi (Conservative) will respond on behalf of the Government.
The session will be webcast at www.parliamentlive.tv and is also open to the public. Journalists wishing to attend should go to Parliament's Cromwell Green Entrance and should allow time for security screening.