Sat, Nov 11, 2006 - Page 2 News List

Seminar seeks to strike human rights, anti-terror balance


Human rights activists yesterday held a seminar in Taipei on ways to strike a balance between human rights protection and anti-terrorism measures.

The Taiwan Association for Human Rights Director Wu Hau-ren (吳豪人) said the seminar was commissioned by the Cabinet further to concerns that the anti-terrorism draft bill, already submitted by the Executive Yuan to the Legislative Yuan for deliberation and approval, might affect the nation's recent human rights record, touted by President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) since he came to power in 2000.

Yesterday's seminar involved legal experts, human rights activists and government officials.

The topics under discussion included issues relating to international anti-terrorism efforts, human rights issues and non-governmental organizations and their role in the global war on terror.

Wu said that after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the US, numerous countries have implemented restrictions on their citizens such as stricter regulations for air travelers but these measures have not stopped terrorism.

"On the contrary, there have been more and more terrorism threats. Why is that? It is also something we want to figure out," Wu said.

"The two issues [national security and human rights protection] are parallel. The purpose of the seminar is to try to ensure that they stay parallel," Wu said. "We would also like to know what Taiwan can contribute to international society, regarding the war against terrorists."

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