Topic: 2024-Balancing Human Rights
Delegate Name: Layne Cleveland
The Republic of Cuba
Bay City Central High School
4th Committee: Special Political and Decolonization Committee (SPECPOL)
Maintaining a balance between Human Rights and continuing strong efforts against Terrorism is a delicate balancing act. Many nations have been struck recently by harrowing terror attacks, with the most major one to date being the September 11th, 2001 terror attacks on the Twin Towers in the United States. If there is a point to name as to where the issue with modern counterterrorism and the breaching of human rights, it is with the September 11th Attacks, as it kicked into motion the grievous breaking of human rights that was the “Patriot Act”, effectively allowing the United States to spy on its citizens. The measures following the September 11th Attacks have caused more harm than good, as it has allowed the government to peer into the lives of the citizens, while not being effective in negating terrorism. Cuba, in particular, has had multiple terrorist attacks on our embassy in the United States since 2020, with the most recent being on September 24, 2023, when two Molotov cocktail fire bombs were thrown at the Cuban embassy building. Regardless, the far-reaching consequences of terrorism must be addressed without breaching the rights of the citizens of a given country.
One noticeable part of counterterrorist legislation is the lack of involvement of humanitarian organizations in the process of writing and enactment, likely being a main factor leading to the breaches in human and civil rights in the legislation of various counterterrorism laws. Oversight by these organizations is a great need for maintaining a balance between fighting terrorism and keeping the rights of citizens safe.
There must be a balance maintained in the legislation of counterterrorism reform. Cuba proposes involving a mix of counterterrorism-dedicated organizations and humanitarian organizations to achieve the goal of first; enhancing the ability for legislation to be more effective by involving more groups than a single government, as singular efforts have often been ineffective thus far, and two; ensuring that rights are maintained for the citizens of the country, with oversight from humanitarian organizations, and allow intervention if the organizations come to a consensus on what is ‘acceptable’ measures.