Protection of Human Rights in Emerging Democracies
There is a correlation between respect for human rights and the
development of democracy in democratically emerging countries, and
even in countries with long-established democracies.
The existence of respected human rights is inconceivable under
authoritarian regimes. Dictatorships do not constitute natural environments
for the protection of human rights. Similarly, no true or evolving
democracy can possibly exist if its growth is not associated with
a parallel development in human rights protection.
Thus, democracy and human rights protection are two interrelated
themes. This correlation is clearly found in Article 21 of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights.
Human rights can be used as an indicator of a state’s political
orientation and as a measure of the progress of an emerging democracy.
Wherever violations escalate one can easily tell that the nascent
democracy is stumbling.
There are many challenges facing emerging democracies, which
Attempts by the old guard to regain power and bring the country
back to the status quo ante. At the same time, and because of the
disorder during the transition phase towards democracy, many segments
in the community may develop a yearning to revert to the era of
Failure in political inclusion of all segments of society.
The fear that weakness or weakening of new institutions (e.g.
the parliament and human rights institutions) may prevent them from
undertaking their roles.
Imposition of legal restrictions on freedom of expression, political
participation and lack of public debating on issues of interest
to the community, whether political, social or otherwise.
The spread of nepotism, the gradual weakening of the rule of
law, impunity, erosion of confidence in the judicial system and
the encroachment of corruption.
Emerging democracies may also face waves of violence, sectarianism,
extremism and terrorism.
All these key issues are linked to human rights, and each one
of them carries some indicators which show whether or not the emerging
democracy is actually moving on the right track.
Thus, in order to maintain an upward trend for Bahrain ‘s political
path, in terms of reform, development and protection of the emerging
democracy, it is necessary: to protect human rights; to activate
the new regulatory institutions; to strengthen the parliament; to
work towards accommodating the society’s political and economic
aspirations and to curb violence, sectarianism and extremism. All
this does not only revive hopes for reform and the dream of democracy,
but it also protects the structure of the state itself.