Human rights and national security
Human rights and freedoms shouldn’t limit the national security,
One of the most difficult problems facing states since 9/11 and the rise of terrorism across the world is balancing national security interests with fundamental rights and freedoms. Extrajudicial killings and claims of mistreatment of prisoners have been commonplace. IPS has selected ‘National Security and Human Rights’ as one of its research topics in light of this. At the Blavatnik School of Government, we have hosted a series of National Security Talks. The first panel, moderated by IPS Executive Director Federica D’Alessandra, included Alka Pradhan and Air Force Captain Mark Andreu, both of whom were named by the US Department of Defense as Ammar Al Baluchi’s defense lawyers before the US military commissions last year. Mark Fallon spoke at the second roundtable about his latest book, Unjustifiable Means, and his time in the US intelligence community, where he held positions such as NCIS Deputy Assistant Director for Counterterrorism and Senior Executive within the Department of Homeland Security. Keep an eye out for our upcoming talks!
07 – national security vs. human rights / ulusal güvenliğe
The national security agencies of the Canadian government work in a difficult climate. They are responsible for defending Canada against a variety of domestic and international threats that are constantly changing. At the same time, they must adhere to the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which define human rights.
National security and human rights goals should not be followed in a binary manner. The challenge is to strike the right balance. The government, Parliament, courts, and national security organizations have all recognized this fact. National security agencies, on the other hand, have been questioned about how much they value human rights in their work in Canada and abroad.
Concerns have been expressed regarding concerns such as racial discrimination, which is forbidden under the Canadian Human Rights Act (the Act). The Special Senate Committee on Anti-Terrorism posed certain questions as recently as March 2011. 1 Human rights violations involving Canadians at the hands of regimes in other countries have been related to Canadian officials and security organizations in particular cases. 2
South sudan: torture, abuses by the national security
Are internet protection and human rights such diametrically opposed concepts that we must choose between the two – free or secure? The controversy surrounding the National Security Agency’s (NSA) surveillance activities shows how government officials and their demand for internet security endangers our fundamental right to privacy as well as our freedoms of information and expression.
It’s great to see you online! You’re curious about our issue of “Network Security and Human Rights,” and want to know how open and safe our data on the internet is? Perhaps you’ve read our blog post titled “How vulnerable is the internet for us citizens?” and are participating in the debate. You have registered online using your email address as a member of the Alumniportal Deutschland, and you believe that your personal details, as well as the ideas and knowledge you share with other users, will remain a private matter of your own interest. And you have every right to believe that – it is one of your basic rights! Yet, even before Edward Snowden’s revelations of the NSA’s activities and covert electronic snooping programs such as Prism and Tempora, the contentious debate about whether and to what degree internet protection can be reconciled with basic human rights was an unresolved question.
Human rights vs. national security
Amnesty International aims to expose and end human rights abuses in national security policies. We’ve helped people get equal care in particular cases, pressured the government to disclose information about its operations, and helped put an end to policies that threaten human rights.
Shaker Aamer, a British citizen and father of four, was one of the first people sent to Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, after the September 11, 2001, attacks. Shaker was born in Saudi Arabia and trained in Georgia and Maryland before joining the US Army as a translator during the Gulf War.
Shaker maintained his innocence at all times. He said he had been tortured for years. In 2007, he was cleared for release from Guantánamo, meaning that officials had no intention to prosecute him – but he was never released.
For more than a decade, Amnesty International has advocated for Shaker’s freedom, mobilizing thousands of people to write letters, directly lobbying the US and UK governments, and working closely with his family and lawyers. Shaker was finally released in October 2015 after being flown to the United Kingdom. He had spent the previous 13 years in jail without being charged with a crime.