The U.S. State Department, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor earlier this week released its 2015 edition of the Country Reports on Human Rights Practices. The annual reports, now in their 40th year, document the status of human rights conditions in 199 countries and territories around the world.
At a press conference on Wednesday, Secretary of State John Kerry said the report “points to a global governance crisis” characterized by “an accelerating trend by both state and non-state actors to close the space for civil society, to stifle media and Internet freedom, to marginalize opposition voices, and in the most extreme cases, to kill people or drive them from their homes.”
In addition to the “frequently grim” examples of human rights abuses documented, the report also tracks the weakening of institutions that undergird democracy, such as leaders taking steps to stifle opposition, circumvent the electoral process, and weaken judiciaries, often in an attempt to perpetuate their continued rule.
Similarly, “corruption, often carried out with impunity, had a corrosive effect on democracy, respect for human rights, and the rule of law,” Kerry said.
“Institutions lose credibility when people can no longer expect a fair and impartial judiciary to address their grievances, obtain basic government services without a bribe, or participate in the political process without their franchise being undermined by corruption,” Kerry warned, stating that “people must have faith in their institutions in order for societies to thrive.”
Focusing for our purposes here solely on the corruption aspects of the report, utilizing its online interface, we have prepared several customized reports exported as PDFs for countries in the following regions:
- Western Hemisphere
- South and Central Asia
- Near and Middle East
- Europe and Eurasia
- East Asia and the Pacific
Click here to visit the State Department’s report website for more complete information or to create a custom report of your own across specific countries/areas and topics.