HRW: New Government Must Make Human Rights ‘Top Priority’

Prominent human rights advocacy organization, Human Rights Watch calls for new civilian government to push for human rights reforms.

In a statement released today, Human Rights Watch has called on the new National League for Democracy government to make human rights a “top priority.”

Mr. Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch, praised some of the first acts taken by the NLD government.
“The NLD-led government has already set the right tone by releasing many political prisoners and dropping charges against hundreds of activists.” Mr. Brad Adams said in his media statement that the government had many obstacles to overcome.

“Many difficult problems remain, tied to issues such as minority rights, land disputes, and freedom of expression, which require a clear and specific plan of action to tackle successfully.”

HRW has officially posted a letter to the new President of Burma, Htin Kyaw, calling for sweeping reforms in the country’s justice system, constitution and the role of the military in political affairs.

“Half a century of military rule can’t be washed away overnight, but there are many things the new government can do in the short term to set a new tone and direction,” Mr. Adams said, “The NLD should use its broad mandate to ensure the rights of all Burmese are respected and genuine democratic rule takes hold.”

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