On 23 February 2016, the NGO Amnesty International (AI) published its annual report for 2015/2016 on the situation of human rights around the world. Despite the fact that the Grand Duchy is not among the 160 countries included in the report, AI Luxembourg praised the work carried out under the Luxembourg Presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU) in the second half of 2015, particularly with regard to the refugee issue. The NGO also welcomed the Grand Duchy's adoption of the Arms Trade Treaty which came into force in December 2014, and its ratification of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
AI Luxembourg also raised a number of negative points concerning the Grand Duchy, including the country's economic cooperation with States the NGO considers as having a poor human rights record, including Saudi Arabia, Qatar and China. According to AI Luxembourg, Luxembourg's Prime Minister, Xavier Bettel, ought to have included some mention of human rights in his talks with Russia's President, Vladimir Poutine, on 6 October 2015. The NGO also criticised the procedure for family reunification in the Grand Duchy.
The 2015/2016 report points at the late and inappropriate reaction to the refugee crisis on the part of the European countries. According to AI, the political leaders ought to pay much more attention to the protection of human rights, rather than pursuing purely economic and geo-strategic interests. The report lists cases of abuse of human rights in more than 160 countries; these rights were violated more frequently in 2015.
(article written by the editorial team of the portal luxembourg.lu)