Amnesty 2023 report: Africa’s ‘limited progress’, ‘grim picture’ in some nations
Amnesty International’s 2023 report titled “State of the World’s Human Rights” says that Africa, on the whole, continues to make progress toward respect for individual rights from speech to political association, though it paints a grim picture of Southern Africa, highlighting troubling abuses in Eswatini, Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Africa has shown “limited progress” in ensuring people’s right to what it terms “truth, justice, reparation, and accountability for grave violations and abuses of human rights,” according to Amnesty International’s report on human rights. It said some African nations used both the Covid-19 pandemic or the pretext of “national security” to muzzle public expression and dissent, including by targeting journalists, rights activists and political opposition members. The human rights NGO also notes instances where African nations have stalled or even backslid, including when it comes to violence against women and how traditions and attitudes have hampered their achievement of equality and parity.
The report also highlights insurgencies and national conflicts in West Africa, Central Africa, and the Horn of Africa that have killed innocent civilians, disrupted food security, forced displacement, and undermined the rule of law in a number of nations. Further south, in Mozambique, al-Shabab armed group continues to behead civilians, abduct women and girls, as well as looting and burning villages. In Zimbabwe, the report says that there has been little reform since the exit of the late former President Robert Mugabe, with activists as well as the opposition still undergoing harassment, arbitrary arrests, detention, torture and imprisonment without trial. South Africa has been backsliding on human rights, the report says, while Eswatini has also been cited for a growing government crackdown on activists and the abduction of opponents.