Human rights breaches in Hong Kong, Russia and at the US-Mexican border

Mexico Border

Tijuana, Mexico (Max Böhme, Unsplash)

This article is brought to you in association with the European Parliament.


On Thursday, the European Parliament adopted three resolutions taking stock of the human rights situation in Hong Kong, Russia and at the US-Mexican border.

Hong Kong

The European Parliament calls on the Hong Kong government (HKSAR) to withdraw the proposed and highly controversial amendments to its extradition law, which has caused people in Hong Kong to take to the streets in unprecedented numbers. They fear the new bill could facilitate people being subjected to rendition to China for political reasons.

MEPs also call on the Hong Kong authorities to immediately release and drop all charges against the peaceful protesters and for an independent and impartial investigation into the use of force by the Hong Kong police against the crowds. They stress that the EU shares many of the concerns raised by the citizens of Hong Kong, since the bill has far-reaching consequences for the territory and its people, for the EU and for foreign citizens, as well as for business confidence in Hong Kong.

The text was adopted by a show of hands and will be available in full here (18.07.2019).

Russia

MEPs call on the Russian authorities to unconditionally release all illegally and arbitrarily detained Ukrainian citizens without further delay, both in Russia and in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. This includes Crimean Tatars, the recently detained Red Square peaceful demonstrators of 10 July 2019, Ukrainian citizens detained on politically motivated charges and the 24 crew members of the Ukrainian naval vessels who were seized near the Kerch Strait by Russian military forces on 25 November last year.

The European Parliament also demands that the Russian authorities immediately cease all forms of harassment against all environmental activists, including Alexandra Koroleva and Ekozaschita!, and human rights defenders in the country, and allow them to carry out their legitimate work without any interference.

The text was adopted with 458 votes in favour, 80 against and 89 abstentions and will be available in full here (18.07.2019).
US-Mexican border

The European Parliament expresses its deep concern about the situation befalling migrants and asylum seekers at the USA-Mexico border, especially that of migrant children.

MEPs are also deeply worried about the appalling conditions in US immigration detention facilities, which they say lack adequate healthcare, decent food and proper sanitation. Family separation and immigration detention are never in the best interests of the child, the resolution further states, while calling on the US government to stop separating families and, as a matter of urgency, to reunify all families with children who are still separated from their parents or guardians.

MEPs stress that border management measures must comply with the US’s international human rights obligations and should not be based on narrow policies aimed at detecting, detaining and expeditiously deporting irregular migrants. They call on the relevant authorities in the US to immediately ensure that all detainees have access to basic rights, such as water, food and shelter.

The text was adopted with 330 votes in favour, 252 against and 55 abstentions and will be available in full here (18.07.2019).

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