Biting the bullet


THE US-BASED, 30-year-old organization Human Rights Watch — the Asia Division of which, incidentally, former New York Times and International Herald Tribune free -lance correspondent Carlos Conde is now the Philippine Researcher — describes itself as “ one of the world’s leading independent organizations dedicated to defending and protecting human rights. By focusing international attention where human rights are violated, we give voice to the oppressed and hold oppressors accountable for their crimes. Our rigorous, objective investigations and strategic, targeted advocacy build intense pressure for action and raise the cost of human rights abuse.”

Human Rights Watch also declares that its mission is “protecting the human rights of people around the world.” It claims to “stand with victims and activists to prevent discrimination, to uphold political freedom, to protect people from inhumane conduct in wartime, and to bring offenders to justice. We investigate and expose human rights violations and hold abusers accountable. We challenge governments and those who hold power to end abusive practices and respect international human rights law. We enlist the public and the international community to support the cause of human rights for all.”

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