Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2002-04-24-Speech-3-087"

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"Mr President, today’s debate and report on human rights would appear to be timely. Consider the pictures of Jenin which have been recalled in this House today, the war which is degenerating into hatred, the hatred which is taking root and generating intolerance, but consider too the need for respect for diversities and minorities, which is an extremely sensitive area of the uphill struggle to secure human rights. That is precisely why our debate is timely, for it is taking place at a time when we are calling upon Parliament to renew its efforts to protect diversities; furthermore, all this is happening on the very day that Mr Le Pen would have us assert a political doctrine, a design, a resolve to deny any respect for diversities and any form of tolerance in politics. This would seem to be a helpful coincidence giving our endeavours positive and proactive meaning. One more word on the subject of terrorism: I was pleased to hear the point made that terrorism is not a threat to the West or to democracy: it is a threat to and a denial of human rights. The response to terrorism cannot fail to disregard human rights, whoever the people are we are dealing with. It is wrong to punish barbarism with barbarism – and I am quoting Cesar Baccarat here, not our group – and so we demand that there be no hasty convictions, no short cut taken around the proper procedure in the trials of the Guantanamo prisoners, and we call for provision to be made for an appeal procedure as in all trials for any crime. We call upon the United States to act quickly, diligently and rigorously in ratifying the convention which will allow the International Criminal Court to start work. A few words on the subject of underage working, Mr President: we believe that all forms of underage working, of child labour, are a violation of the right to childhood, which is a stage of life during which people are not supposed to use machine guns, for example. This also applies to child soldiers and suggests, once again, that human rights are only taken into account when it is convenient. Although it might not be convenient for the British army, we would prefer it if there were no more underage soldiers."@en1

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