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Human rights in Moldova: Wikis

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Current situation

According to Amnesty International's 2007 annual report, the state of human rights in Moldova are poor. Torture and ill-treatment were widespread and conditions in pre-trial detention were poor. A number of treaties protecting women's rights were ratified, but men, women and children continued to be trafficked for forcible sexual and other exploitation and measures to protect women against domestic violence were inadequate. Constitutional changes to abolish the death penalty were made. Freedom of expression was restricted and opposition politicians were targeted.

The United States Senate has held committee hearings on irregularities that marred elections in Moldova, including the arrest and harassment of opposition candidates, intimidation and suppression of independent media, and state run media bias in favor of candidates backed by the Moldovan Government.[1]

State media coverage of the street protests in 2002 regarding the Communists’ attempt to reinstate obligatory study of the Russian language and to defend the cultural identity that the majority of Moldovans share with neighboring Romania was censored. In February 2002, in response to severe censorship of the state broadcaster Teleradio-Moldova (TVM), hundreds of TVM journalists went on strike in solidarity with the anti-communist opposition. In retribution, a few journalists and staff members were dismissed or suspended from the station in March.[2]

However, in 2004 an improvement was made and the Moldovan Parliament removed Article 170 from the country's Criminal Code. Article 170 called for up to five years imprisonment for defamation.[3]

According to the OSCE, the media climate in Moldova remained restrictive as of 2004.[4] Authorities continued a long-standing campaign to silence independent opposition voices and movements. In a case widely criticized by human rights defenders, opposition politician Valeriu Pasat was sentenced to a ten-year prison term. The United States and human rights defenders from the European Union consider him a political prisoner, and an official statement from Russia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs called the judgment "striking in its cruelty".

Women

No female members of the 1990 transition legislature survived the first post-communist electoral contest. In Moldova, female candidates elected in 1990 disproportionately represented the conservative wing of the ruling Communist Party. Female representation remained strong among the Communists, e.g. former Prime Minister, Zinaida Greceanîi.

References

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