US singles out abuses in Russia, Belarus, Ukraine

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The United States said Friday that abuses were "especially serious" last year in Russia, Belarus and Ukraine.

In its 2010 country reports on human rights practices, the State Department said that in Ukraine, "there was backsliding after positive developments in previous years."

Belarus authorities "arbitrarily arrested, detained and imprisoned pro-democracy activists, journalists and civil society representatives," the report said.

While in Russia "attacks on and the murder of journalists continued."

"The government (also) infringed on freedom of expression, assembly and association," the report added.

In Ukraine, despite beginning with free and fair presidential elections, the overall trend for 2010 was negative due to problematic local elections, intimidation of the media, and prosecution of opposition figures.

© 2011 AFP

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