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TITLE:  APPENDIX A:  Preparation of Reports, 1994

                           APPENDIX A
              Notes on Preparation of the Reports

We base the annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices on 
information available from all sources, including American and 
foreign government officials, victims of human rights abuse, 
academic and congressional studies, and reports from the press, 
international organizations, and nongovernmental organizations 
(NGO's) concerned with human rights.  We find particularly 
helpful, and make reference in most reports to, the role of 
NGO's, ranging from groups in a single country to those that 
concern themselves with human rights worldwide.  While much of 
the information we use is already public, information on 
particular abuses frequently cannot be attributed, for obvious 
reasons, to specific sources.

By law, we must submit the reports to Congress by January 31.  
To comply, we provide guidance to United States diplomatic 
missions in September for submission of draft reports in 
October, which we update by year's end as necessary.  Other 
offices in the Department of State provide contributions and 
the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor prepares a 
final draft.  Because of the preparation time required, it is 
possible that yearend developments may not be fully reflected.  
We make every effort to include reference to major events or 
significant changes in trends.

We have attempted to make these country reports as 
comprehensive as space will allow, while taking care to make 
them objective and as uniform as possible in both scope and 
quality of coverage.  We have given particular attention to 
attaining a high standard of consistency despite the 
multiplicity of sources and the obvious problems related to 
varying degrees of access to information, structural 
differences in political and social systems, and trends in 
world opinion regarding human rights practices in specific 

It is often difficult to evaluate the credibility of reports of 
human rights abuses.  With the exception of some terrorist 
organizations, most opposition groups and certainly most 
governments deny that they commit human rights abuses and often 
go to great lengths to conceal any evidence of such acts.  
There are often few eyewitnesses to specific abuses, and they 
frequently are intimidated or otherwise prevented from 
reporting what they know.  On the other hand, individuals and 
groups opposed to a particular government sometimes have 
powerful incentives to exaggerate or fabricate abuses, and some 
governments similarly distort or exaggerate abuses attributed 
to opposition groups.  We have made every effort to identify 
those groups (e.g., government forces, terrorists, etc.) that 
are believed, based on all the evidence available, to have 
committed human rights abuses.  Where credible evidence is 
lacking, we have tried to indicate why.  Many governments that 
profess to oppose human rights abuses in fact secretly order or 
tacitly condone them or simply lack the will or the ability to 
control those responsible for them.  Consequently, in judging a 
government's policy, it is important to look beyond statements 
of policy or intent in order to examine what in fact a 
government has done to prevent human rights abuses, including 
the extent to which it investigates, tries, and appropriately 
punishes those who commit such abuses.  We continue to make 
every effort to do that in these reports.

To increase uniformity, the introductory section of each report 
contains a brief setting, indicating how the country is 
governed and providing the context for examining the country's 
human rights performance.  A description of the political 
framework and the role of security and law enforcement agencies 
with respect to human rights is followed by a brief 
characterization of the economy.  The setting concludes with an 
overview of human rights developments in the year under review, 
mentioning specific areas (e.g., torture, freedom of speech and 
press) in which abuses occurred.

We have continued the effort from previous years to expand 
reporting on human rights practices affecting women, children, 
and indigenous people.  We discuss in the appropriate section 
of the report any abuses that are targeted specifically against 
women (e.g., rape or other violence perpetrated by governmental 
or organized opposition forces, or discriminatory laws or 
regulations.)  Socioeconomic discrimination; societal violence 
against women, children, or minority group members; and the 
efforts, if any, of governments to combat these problems 
continue to be discussed in Section 5.

With regard to governmental policies on the welfare of 
children, readers may wish to consult "The State of the World's 
Children 1994," published by the United Nations Children's 
Fund, which provides a wide range of data on health, education, 
nutrition, and rates of infant mortality and mortality under 5 
years of age in some 145 countries, as well as information on 
the degree of progress that these countries are making in 
reducing the key mortality rate for those under 5.

The following notes on specific categories of the report are 
not meant to be comprehensive descriptions of each category but 
to provide definitions of key terms used in the reports and to 
explain the organization of material within the format:

Political and Other Extrajudicial Killing--Includes killings in 
which there is evidence of government instigation without due 
process of law, or of political motivation by government or by 
opposition groups; also covers extrajudicial killings (e.g., 
deliberate, illegal, and excessive use of lethal force by the 
police, security forces, or other agents of the State whether 
against criminal suspects, detainees, prisoners, or others); 
excludes combat deaths and killings by common criminals, if the 
likelihood of political motivation can be ruled out (see also 
Section 1.g.).

Disappearance--Covers unresolved cases in which political 
motivation appears likely and in which the victims have not 
been found or perpetrators have not been identified; cases 
eventually classed as political killings are covered in the 
above category, those eventually identified as arrest or 
detention are covered under "Arbitrary Arrest, Detention, or 

Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or
Punishment--Torture is here defined as an extremely severe form
of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, 
committed by or at the instigation of government forces or 
opposition groups, with specific intent to cause extremely 
severe pain or suffering, whether mental or physical.  
Discussion concentrates on actual practices, not on whether 
they fit any precise definition, and includes use of physical 
and other force that may fall short of torture but which is 
cruel, inhuman, or degrading.

Arbitrary Arrest, Detention, or Exile--Covers cases in which 
detainees, including political detainees, are held in official 
custody without charges or, if charged, are denied a public 
preliminary judicial hearing within a reasonable period.  Also 
discusses whether, and under what circumstances, governments 
exile citizens.

Denial of Fair Public Trial--Briefly describes the court system 
and evaluates whether there is an independent judiciary and 
whether trials are both fair and public (failure to hold any 
trial is noted in the category above); includes discussion of 
"political prisoners" (political detainees are covered above), 
defined as those imprisoned for essentially political beliefs 
or nonviolent acts of dissent or expression, regardless of the 
actual charge.

Arbitrary Interference with Privacy, Family, Home, or 
Correspondence--Discusses the "passive" right of the individual
to noninterference by the State; includes the right to receive 
foreign publications, for example, while the right to publish 
is discussed under "Freedom of Speech and Press"; includes the 
right to be free from coercive population control measures, 
including coerced abortion and involuntary sterilization but 
does not include cultural or traditional practices, such as 
female genital mutilation, which are addressed in Section 5.

Use of Excessive Force and Violations of Humanitarian Law in 
Internal Conflicts--An optional subsection for use in 
describing abuses that occur in countries experiencing 
significant internal armed conflict.  Includes indiscriminate, 
nonselective killings arising from excessive use of force, 
e.g., by police in putting down demonstrations (deliberate, 
targeted killing would be discussed in Section l.a.).  Also 
includes abuses against civilian noncombatants.  For reports in 
which use of this section would be inappropriate, i.e., in 
which there is no significant internal conflict, lethal use of 
excessive force by security forces (which is herein defined as 
a form of extrajudicial killing) is discussed in Section 1.a.; 
nonlethal excessive force in Section 1.c.

Freedom of Speech and Press--Evaluates whether these freedoms 
exist and describes any direct or indirect restrictions.  
Includes discussion of academic freedom.

Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and Association--Evaluates the 
ability of individuals and groups (including political parties) 
to exercise these freedoms.  Includes the ability of trade 
associations, professional bodies, and similar groups to 
maintain relations or affiliate with recognized international 
bodies in their fields.  The right of labor to associate and to 
organize and bargain collectively is discussed under Section 6, 
Worker Rights (see Appendix B).

Freedom of Religion--Discusses whether the Constitution and/or 
laws provide for the right of citizens of whatever religious 
belief to worship free of government interference and whether 
the government respects that right.  Includes the freedom to 
publish religious documents in foreign languages; addresses the 
treatment of foreign clergy and whether religious belief 
affects membership in a ruling party or a career in government.

Freedom of Movement Within the Country, Foreign Travel, 
Emigration, and Repatriation--Includes discussion of forced 
resettlement; "refugees" may refer to persons displaced by 
civil strife or natural disaster as well as persons who are 
"refugees" within the meaning of the Refugee Act of 1980, i.e., 
persons with a "well-founded fear of persecution" in their 
country of origin or, if stateless, in their country of 
habitual residence, on account of race, religion, nationality, 
membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.

Respect for Political Rights:  The Right of Citizens to Change 
Their Government--Discusses the extent to which citizens have 
freedom of political choice and have the legal right and 
ability in practice to change the laws and officials that 
govern them; assesses whether elections are free and fair.

Governmental Attitude Regarding International and 
Nongovernmental Investigation of Alleged Violations of Human 
Rights--Discusses whether the government permits the free 
functioning of local human rights groups (including the right 
to investigate and publish their findings on alleged human 
rights abuses) and whether they are subject to reprisal by 
government or other forces.  Also discusses whether the 
government grants access to and cooperates with outside 
entities (including foreign human rights organizations, 
international organizations, and foreign governments) 
interested in human rights developments in the country.

Discrimination Based on Race, Sex, Religion, Disability, 
Language, or Social Status--Continuing the practice begun last 
year, every report contains a subheading on Women, Children, 
and People With Disabilities.  As appropriate, some reports 
also include subheadings on Indigenous People, 
National/Racial/Ethnic Minorities, and Religious Minorities.  
Discrimination against groups not fitting one of the above 
subheadings is discussed in the introductory paragraphs of 
Section 5.  In this section we address discrimination and 
abuses not discussed elsewhere in the report, focusing on laws, 
regulations, or state practices which are inconsistent with 
equal access to housing, employment, education, health care, or 
other governmental benefits by members of specific groups.  
(Abuses by government or opposition forces, such as killing, 
torture and other violence, or restriction of voting rights or 
free speech targeted against specific groups would be discussed 
under the appropriate preceding sections.)  Government 
tolerance of societal violence or other abuse against women, 
e.g., "dowry deaths," wife beating, trafficking in women, is 
discussed in this section under the subheading on women.  We 
also discuss under this subheading the extent to which the law 
provides for, and the government enforces, equality of economic 
opportunity for women.  Similarly, we discuss violence or other 
abuse against children under that subheading.  Because female 
genital mutilation (circumcision) is most often performed on 
children, we discuss it under that subheading.

Worker Rights -- See Appendix B.


[end of document]


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