Being human

‘The African Union has been disappointing,’ says Human Rights Watch’s Kenneth Roth

By Musinguzi Blanshe

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Posted on July 5, 2022 16:32

Human Rights Watch’s executive director Kenneth Roth, 66, who is stepping down at the end of August after almost three decades of steering the organisation, discusses what it has achieved and what is left to do in an interview with The Africa Report.

Roth talks about his meetings with African leaders such as Ethiopia’s late prime minister Meles Zenawi, the Democratic Republic of Congo’s former president Joseph Kabila, Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni and Rwanda’s Paul Kagame – the only world leader who has blocked him on Twitter.

Human Rights Watch is an international non-governmental organisation that has its headquarters in the New York in the United States. Roth also explains Human Rights Watch’s relationship with the African Union (AU). Its lack of support for human rights on the continent is “disappointing”, says Roth and he says it must do better.

“It likes to talk about the African solutions to African problems,” Roth says, referring to the AU. He hastens to point out several cases where the continental body is not doing that. From the conflict in Tigray, to the Sudan coup that has impeded transition to a civilian government, a series

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