Virtual summit: Biden sees democracy in danger

Virtual summit: Biden sees democracy in danger

Status: December 9, 2021 at 4:44 pm.

US President Biden opened the “Summit for Democracy” with a clear warning. Autocrats are advancing around the world, he warned – and called for more reconciliation. America wants to strengthen democracy with a three-digit million.

At the start of his two-day virtual “Summit for Democracy”, US President Joe Biden warned that democratic systems around the world were at risk. He is mainly concerned with the advancement of autocrats in many countries. Globally, the trend is “going largely in the wrong direction”. “We are at a turning point,” Biden said.

The US president warned that autocrats justified repressive practices “as a more efficient way of meeting today’s challenges”. He called for the preservation of common values. “We must stand up for justice and the rule of law, for freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of the press, freedom of religion – all the innate human rights of every individual,” he demanded.

Increased fight against corruption

Action must be taken now to prevent and reverse global democratic disintegration. For this he needs “champions”. Biden announced a US “democratic renewal initiative” to strengthen democracies around the world. According to the White House, the US intends to provide up to US $ 424 million for this in the coming year.

Biden said the money is to be used, for example, to support freedom of the press or fight corruption. It should also be ensured that marginalized groups have their say in a democracy. The US also wants to work with partner countries to combat authoritarian censorship of the Internet.

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critique of invitation

By holding the two-day conference, the United States seeks to reduce its leadership role in the struggle for existence between democratic and autocratic systems that it has condemned. In addition to activists and business representatives, Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz and other heads of government are also invited.

The White House invitation list was criticized ahead of the online meeting. Can be found in some states where democracy is under pressure, others not. For example, Pakistan and the Philippines are included, but NATO state Turkey and EU member Hungary were omitted. In contrast, Brazil’s right-wing radical President Jair Bolsonaro was invited.

The White House insisted that an invitation to the summit should not be combined with a seal of approval for democracy in the country. The criteria by which the states were selected remained unclear.

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