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How can blockchain technology protect human rights around the world?

How can blockchain technology protect human rights around the world?

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Answer How can blockchain technology protect human rights around the world?

The blockchain may not be a panacea for all of the world’s problems, but there are many areas where it can really make a difference. One of these areas is “human rights”. According to a 2014 report by Freedom House, only 40% of the world’s population lives in “free” countries. To define the word free, it is enough to say that it is that country that is supposed to respect basic human rights, but we are now in 2018 and a lot has changed and unfortunately not for the better.

A snapshot of human rights around the world

We often deal with basic human rights, such as freedom of opinion and expression and freedom of travel and movement. Many of us forget that in some countries you can simply be jailed for it or even killed for your thought, opinion and freedom since most of the world is still under the control of corrupt and oppressive governments, but blockchain technology can make it easier to solve that problem.

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The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights covers a degree of fundamental rights to which all people are entitled. However, many citizens around the world do not have access to these rights. Among a list of 30 articles, broad points are represented: the right to equality, freedom from slavery, and the elimination of discrimination and torture, in addition to protecting freedom of opinion and access to information.

An Amnesty International report released this year found that many countries “supposedly” bound by the Universal Declaration fail to comply with basic human rights. The humanitarian crisis in “Venezuela” is considered one of the worst economic crises in the country’s history, as well as the ongoing state of war in many countries in the Middle East and the destruction of all basic human rights to food and shelter. Add to this the continuing Turkish crackdown on journalists and political activists and the reduction of the ceiling on freedom of expression in Russia, all of these manifestations directly inconsistent with the human rights agreement.

People often think of a definite link between human rights abuses, developing countries and repressive regimes, but the USA, the European Union and Australia have earned a place among the worst human rights abusers on Amnesty International’s list.

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The European Union and Australia have been excluded for their “cruel” treatment of refugees, and Trump’s controversial ban on accepting travelers is a violation of the human right to freedom of movement and shows discrimination on religious grounds.

Blockchain and human rights

With blockchain technology, we can track human rights issues more easily. This will provide transparency and publicize the accountability of developing and developed countries alike. In the minds of many when it comes to talking about the blockchain, some think that it is a distant future and not present at all, however there are many cases in which the practical use of the blockchain in the field of human rights at the present time. Let’s look at some examples.

The right to a fair standard of living

From Zimbabwe to Venezuela and Burma to Syria, people all over the world are unable to access their right to an adequate standard of living. This means that they have access to food and drinking water and are not forced to live in a conflict zone or in fear of persecution. In countries where hyperinflation removes people’s savings, “civil society” and “human rights” begin to come together. Cryptocurrencies are fueling the deepening humanitarian crisis in Venezuela by adopting the digital currency Petro.

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With the value of the national currency declining by as much as 95% from day to day, more and more Venezuelans are turning to using cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, etc..etc. In fact, there are now more than 900 merchants accepting payments across the country. In the words of the founder of Dash Venezuela: “Venezuelas have been using cryptocurrency for years to protect capital from inflation. But now with Dash, it has opened a new window as a payment method. It is an easy way to get a stronger alternative to the bolivar (Venezuelan currency), which is legitimate and within the scope of the law.”

Digital currency enables more micro-trading and micro-lending. Since you can set a specific value to the maximum quantity then the economically viable trading volume becomes smaller. Blockchain and human rights constitute a more compelling case where people all over the world can access the banking system, and start their own businesses through it.

The right to participate in government and to hold free elections

Among the articles of human rights enshrined in the United Nations Global Compact, is the right to participate in government and free elections. However, this is intentionally denied to many people. for example; Electoral fraud is common all over the world. Even in countries such as: the United States of America, which declared itself as the “Land of Freedom,” there were clear interferences during the 2016 presidential election.

The Kenyan elections in 2017 resulted in bloodshed, controversy and chaos on the border and in the center of the country, with the people fighting. There was a widespread feeling that the elections were rigged, and many Kenyans were unable to participate because voters were intimidated by weapons or lured by money. However, there were loud voices screaming against the elections and claiming that it was rigged, but this was covered up by the opponent candidate who won power with a very surreal 98% of the total votes.

However, electoral fraud and voter orientation is not a problem confined to the African continent and its developing countries only. It is a common and widespread behavior throughout the world, as well as in private and public companies. But once the blockchain is used as a mechanism on which the voting process is based, it will ensure complete integrity and transparency, and the results will be very positive.. People can vote in the privacy of their homes, away from guidance and intimidation. All votes will be collected with evidence in the books, such as anonymous voting at the ballot box.

There are still some issues that need to be ironed out when it comes to blockchain voting such as: verifying the identity of voters and making sure that the same people do not vote twice, but countries like Estonia have already demonstrated that this is possible. In fact all Estonians have their own ID cards that they can use to vote via blockchain technology securely and quickly.

The right to freedom of opinion and the right to information

According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, in December of 2017, a large number of journalists registered worldwide. The largest concentrations are in China, Turkey and Egypt. Freedom of opinion and information is a luxury for many in these parts of the world. If the government doesn’t like certain sites, they can shut them down or censor them. Wikipedia, for example, is censored or banned in many countries, including Russia, Iran, China, Turkey, and even France.

The fact that blockchain technology provides us with a global decentralized technology that is not subject to censorship means that no central entity or local government can shut it down.. which is important in this matter, as the privacy of correspondence and private networks are achieved once again and open platforms to resist network censorship aimed at Ensuring the continuation of the free world and communications without control and restrictions. Which confirms that the blockchain can provide endless possibilities in the field of human rights when it comes to freedom of information.

Conclusion

More cases of blockchain use in the field of human rights will evolve over time. Among the thirty articles that have been drafted in the United Nations Universal Charter of Human Rights, blockchain technology has the potential to help the many who are losing those rights day in and day out.

And if it (blockchain technology) is used correctly in identity management, we will be able to eliminate slavery and human trafficking crimes, and even bond ownership can determine the ownership of land registered on a documented and transparent ledger which will put an end to illegal land grab.

There are certainly many human rights problems to address. It will be interesting to see how many cases where blockchain technology plays a key role as a “contract solver.”

Other areas that the blockchain can change for the better.

  • How can blockchain technology develop the justice system?
  • Blockchain and the fight against customs fraud
  • Establishment of the first blockchain-powered court


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