Lusaka – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on February 27 released the 2013 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices. The country-specific Human Rights Reports are documents the U.S. Congress, by law, requires the State Department to prepare annually and make public. The reports cover internationally recognized individual, civil, political, and worker rights, as set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international agreements. The publication of the annual reports reflects U.S. commitment to the advancement of human rights around the world.
The U.S. Human Rights Report on Zambia highlights noteworthy improvements in several key sectors, notably in prison capacity, anti-corruption investigations, and mine safety. Increased visibility of the Human Rights Commission gives evidence that an independent government organization is actively working to ensure all Zambians may exercise their human rights.
At the same time, the U.S. government in 2013 observed serious human rights problems. These include arbitrary arrest; extrajudicial killings; prolonged pretrial detention; arbitrary interference with privacy; restrictions on freedoms of speech, assembly, and the press; government corruption; violence and discrimination against women; child abuse; trafficking in persons; discrimination against persons with disabilities and members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community; restrictions on labor rights; forced labor; and child labor.
The United States government appreciates its ongoing dialogue with the Zambian government about the internationally recognized human rights that both our nations have pledged to uphold. These are important commitments we make with all our citizens. We firmly believe both the United States and Zambia are more secure in a world where governments protect their peoples’ rights and freedoms.
The full report is available here.