1.20.2006

War on Terror or on Minorities?


The Minority Rights Group International has released its first "State of the World's Minorities" report.

Here are are some excerpts from Aljazeera's article about the report:
Violence and repression directed against the world's minorities have struck hardest in Iraq, according to a report presented at the United Nations.

Iraq topped the report's list of areas where minorities are under threat, scoring the highest total of a combination of factors which include "major armed conflicts" and "rise of factionalised elites." . . .

Mark Lattimer, the group's executive director, told a press conference on Thursday: "In every world region, minorities and indigenous peoples have been excluded, repressed and, in many cases, killed by their governments. In war today, the targeting of minorities is no longer the exception, but has become the norm." . . .

In Iraq, the top concerns were the violent repression of Sunni Muslims and others considered opponents of the US-supported government, and the forced displacement or intimidation of smaller minorities, it said.

While Lattimer acknowledged that Iraq's parliamentary elections were a huge step toward democracy, he said: "the likely result is a political pattern in Iraq which shows an increased division between different ethnic or religious groups."

He said it has continued with one-sided criticism of insurgent killings of majority Shia but a failure to criticise human rights violations against minority Sunni civilians "by the governing forces in Iraq." . . .
I guess the great thing about the US is that it can foster this trend in so many countries and regions at the same time. As goes New Orleans, so goes Mosul, eh?

(photo © aljazeera)