U.S. Statement at the UPR of Germany

As delivered by Jason Mack

30th Session of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Working Group
Geneva, May 8, 2018

Thank you, Mr. President.

The United States commends Germany for its commitment to human rights and its excellent record investigating and holding accountable those responsible for violations and abuses. However, we remain concerned by reports of anti-Semitic acts and violence against Muslims and immigrants.

We welcome Germany’s efforts to address forced labor, but note victims continue to be exploited on construction sites and in other sectors.  We commend the strengthening of criminal statutes against both sex and labor trafficking.

The United States appreciates Germany’s leadership within the Freedom Online Coalition, but notes its “NetzDG” law could be misused to limit expression online, raising concerns regarding the protection of freedom of expression.

Werecommend that Germany:

  1. Ensure that the same rights persons have offline are also protected online.
  2. Ensure human traffickers are prosecuted for “trafficking” and sentence those convicted with punishments reflecting the severity of the crime; and institute a public awareness campaign about forced labor, to include the protections available for victims. And
  3. Increase intragovernmental coordination in monitoring violence and discrimination against members of minority groups, including religious groups.