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Human Rights

Volume 227: debated on Monday 28 June 1993

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) which developing countries have a human rights record which adversely affects their eligibility for development aid under his Department's policy;(2) if he will list the developing countries which he treats as having good human rights records when they are considered for development aid assistance.

The human rights record of a recipient country is one of several factors we consider when deciding overseas aid allocations. Amongst other factors we take into account the needs of the country concerned and how effectively our aid will be used. Where a country's human rights record is poor, we have a number of ways of urging improvement. We take every opportunity, often with our EC and other partners, to make our views clear to Governments which are abusing human rights.We are ready to help countries which show an intention to move to better standards of government with well targeted development assistance. In cases of persistent human rights abuse we are also prepared to restrict or withdraw development aid. Recent examples include Burma, Malawi and Sudan. Announcements are made when this is done.