Cyprus EU presidency must embrace human rights

Cyprus EU presidency must embrace human rights
(Brussels, 2 July 2012) As Cyprus assumes the mantle of the European Union’s rotating six-month presidency, Amnesty International has presented an eight-point list of human rights improvements it expects the country to oversee with its fellow member states. 
The Cypriot presidency should be in no doubt that the EU’s home soil is the site of serious human rights violations”, said Nicolas Beger, Director of Amnesty International’s European Institutions Office. “The growing wave of intolerance towards minorities, homophobic attacks, mistreatment of migrants and asylum-seekers and complicity with the CIA’s torture and secret renditions are happening under the presidency’s very nose.” 
Among the other goals Amnesty International has asked Cyprus to pursue are:-
Ensuring the EU finally lives up to its promises to devise a strategy on violence against women, including female genital mutilation (FGM)
Concluding the recast asylum instruments, ensuring that all EU countries apply adequate and equivalent standards of how they handle asylum-seekers
As it has done at the start of previous presidencies, Amnesty International has highlighted eight people and communities who have suffered human rights abuse and need the EU’s intervention. 
For interviews or further comment, please contact:-
Peter Clarke
Media & Communications Officer
European Institutions Office, Amnesty International
Tel: +32 (0)2 548 2773