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Arkansas Catholic
Little Rock, Arkansas
September 1, 1991     Arkansas Catholic
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September 1, 1991

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ARKANSAS CATHOLIC SEPrEMBER 1, 1991 PAGE 11 Amnesty International annual report chronicles killi Some flagrant, some hypocritical London (CNS) - Amnesty International, in its 1991 annual report, says more than 100 governments tortured or mistreated prisoners last year and thousands of extrajudicial executions took place in 29 nations. The 290-page annual report by the London-based intema- tOaal human rights organization also said people were jailed as prisoners of conscience in about half of the world's countries and death sentences were handed down or carried out in 90 natons. "Some governments are flagrantly torun-ing and killing. Oth- ers are hypocritically condemning some abuses but ignoring others when it suits them," said the reporL Among gross human fights violations committed in 1990, the annual report dted: EUROPE J~rkey- continued widespread and systematic torture. In the east, where security forces fought Kurdish separatist rebels, raany people with no background of political activity were de- tained on suspioon of sheltering rebels. Many were reportedly tortared and some killed. CZechoslovakia and Ireland abolished the death penalty, Bul- garia announced a moratorium on executions and Albania re- duced the scope of the death penalty; capital punishment re- mained in use in Poland, Turkey and Yugoslavia. AFRICA South Afxk:a- the ban on the African National Congress and Other opposition groups was lifted, Nelson Mandela freed and I the national state of emergency came to an end. But there was I also "spiraling po'lifical violence" leading to thousands of deaths I ~d 1,500 government opponents held without charge or trial. ~.._people were tortured in police custody and there were 18 deaths of detainees. Zaire - new political parties were allowed for the first time since 1965, more than 100 suspected or "known government op- ponents were arrested and some students killed by masked mem- bers of security forces. Liberia- army and rebel forces executed thousands of people without legal procedures or after unfair trials. Somalia- hundreds were victims of extrajudicial executions by government forces. ASIA AND THE PACIFIC India - an unprecedented rise in violence mid killings by separatist groups and an increase in politically motivated killings by government forces. '~:ores of people" reportedly died in police and military custody as a result of torture. Philippines- scores of suspected government opponents were believed murdered by security forces. Extrajudidal executions were also reported in the ethnic minority states of Myanmar (formerly Burma), Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. More than half the countries in the region, including China, Talwan, South Korea and Indonesia, continue to execute or impose death sentences on people. THE AMERICAS Death squad and other extrajudidal killings left hundreds of people dead in the region, among them government critic~, human rights activists and children. "Hundreds more disappeared at the hands of the military or police forces - and were sometimes found dead later - or were brutally tortured in prisons, police stations, military barracks or on the sn-eets," Amnesty reported: Brazil - nearly 500 minors were killed by death squads. Columbia- an increase in death squad slayings; hundreds ng, torture, harassment were executed or disappeared after being seized by members of the armed forces or paramilitary groups associated with them. Guatemala- an incTease in death squad attacks on politicians and journalists leading up to elections at the end of the year. Hundreds of civilians disappeared or were extrajudidally killed and some of those found dead were tortured before being killed. [] Salvador - death squad killings doubled in the first eight months of 1990 compared to the previous year, with man), mutilated bodies found dumped roadside. Peru - ntral areas were especially hard hit, more than 300 people, including children, disappeared after being arrested by security forces. Cuba- at least 70 government critics were arrested and de- tained. THE MIDDLE EAST Egypt - thousands of members and supporters of Islamic groups were detained under emergency laws. Israel - some 25,000 Palestnians were arrested in Israel and the Occupied Territories, with more than 4,000 detained with- out charge or trial. About 120 Palestinians, induding children, were shot dead by Israeli forces under "circumstances suggest- ing unjustifiable killings." h'an - hundreds of political prisoners were detained. Sus- pected government opponents continue to be imprisoned or detained in Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Libya. Iraq- the fate of 353 Kurds who disappeared while in custody in 1988, some after returning from refugee camps in Turkey, still was not known. Iraqi soldiers killed hundreds of Kuwaitis following Iraq's invasion of Kuwait. Amnesty said prisoners and detainees "in virtually every coun- txy in the Middle East were tortured or iU-treated." ~COnfrontafion,,, from page I The poet, who had been sent to a Soviet "If the people had their say, Gorbachev hbor camp forwriting refigious poetry, said Ould never be elected. When the media she kept in dose telephone contact with ~d politicians in the West speak about the friends in the Soviet Union during the coup Lnsfitution' they should remember that it and its collapse. ~. written and rewritten by the Commu- "My main impression is that the Russian .. . :, ,~ Ly, she sma. people tend to blame Gorbachev for what o#i And the last time it was rewritten it was has happened, because all the people re- fi00 i rewritten bv Gorbachev. He established the sponsible for the coup were chosen persorv o1~! l~sition o(President of the Soviet Union- ally by him," Ratushinskaya said. ,, g~: ~d then he took that oosidon. Now (Rus- ~ Pres.) Boris Yeltsin" is the hero of the dol~~ ~sians. (Lithuanian Pres. Vytautas) in InRussiathe failedand allcup'Sthe otheraftermath"republicsPeple r, dsbergis is the hero of the Lithuanians. insist on getting their own power. I don t u'~, rhachev is nobody's hero apart t~om the think ~ey will ever trust centralized power "estem politicians." again, Ratushinskaya said. Since 1985, when Mikhail Gorbachev came to power in the Soviet Union, the number of churches there has grown by more than 50 Percent. Currently, there are 52.4 million Orthodox believers and about 12 million Catholics. 1985 1990 RUssian Orthodox 6,806 11,118 Catholic 1,068 1,385 )1991 CNS graphics MUslim 392 1,103 Jewish 91 106 Baptist 2,537 2,841 Seventh-day Adventist 342 457 Vce: Soviet government figures, published in re Romano (Vatican newspaper) f Charter a Bust Any size bus available, from school bus to luxury air conditioned coaches. Houston-Bigelow Bus Lines Arrow Coach Lines 663-6002 or toll free 1-800-632-3679 2715 W. lOth St. Little Rock # JOE England, AR 1 2 1 N. Court Carlisle. AR Harold Lewis, Pharmacist Pat Cook, Pharmacist 552- 7837