“The World Bank is a Human Rights-Free Zone”

The Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, has issued a report highly critical of the World Bank, which he states has “historically been averse to acknowledging and taking account of human rights,” and whose current approach to human rights is “incoherent, counterproductive and unsustainable.”  He states:  “For most purposes, the World Bank is currently a human rights-free zone,” and “In its operational policies, in particular, it treats human rights more like an infectious disease than universal values and obligations.”   He will present his report to the UN General Assembly on October 23.  The full text of the press release is available here.

John Knox

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