News / Middle East

Secretary Clinton Extends US Support to Middle East Activists

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks during a news conference at the State Department in Washington, May 24, 2012. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks during a news conference at the State Department in Washington, May 24, 2012.
x
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks during a news conference at the State Department in Washington, May 24, 2012.
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks during a news conference at the State Department in Washington, May 24, 2012.
VOA News
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton welcomed Middle East democracy activists to the State Department on Tuesday, asking for their input on how the United States can help advance freedom and human rights in the region.

Greeting the activists before the meeting, Clinton called on them to give their "honest assessments" of the best ways for the U.S. to offer support.

"We just want to continue encouraging you, supporting you where we can in your efforts to stand up for democracy, real democracy, and the human rights of every human being, and to help advance the cause of progress and freedom in every way that you are already doing so," said Clinton. "And we're very proud of what you are doing, and we know it's not an easy path to be on, but history has I think shown time and time again that you are on the right side of history."

Clinton said the U.S. has had its own struggle with human rights, including overcoming slavery and ensuring that women have the right to vote.

"So it's not like we are telling you that it's easy for us, because it's been challenging. But we had the luxury of doing it during 200 years of history where the whole world was not watching everything you did and said," said Clinton. You are in a way in a much more challenging environment because of the media and technology that now has an opinion about everything and can be used for the betterment of human society or for the undermining of progress."

The visiting activists hail from across the Middle East and North Africa, including Egypt, Libya, Tunisia and Yemen, which all have been undergoing political transitions in the wake of anti-government uprisings. The other activists come from Algeria, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, the Palestinian territories and Qatar. Many in the group also took part in the State Department's civil society dialogue earlier this month.

Clinton has been a strong advocate for supporting rights in the region and has been especially concerned with events in Syria. In a speech before the United Nations Security Council in March, she said the Syrian people "deserve the same opportunity to shape their future that the Tunisians, Egyptians, Libyans and Yemenis now enjoy."

You May Like

Reports of Mass Murder on Mediterranean Smuggler’s Boat

Boat sailed from Libya with 750 migrants aboard and arrived in Italy with 569 More

Video New Thailand Hotline Targets Misbehaving Monks

Officials say move aims to restore country’s image of Buddhism, tarnished by recent high profile scandals such as opulent lifestyle, drug and alcohol abuse, as well as child sex abuse More

Study: Dust from Sahara Helped Form Bahama Islands

What does the Sahara have in common with a Caribbean island? Quite a lot, researchers say More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train in Underwater Labi
X
George Putic
July 25, 2014 7:25 PM
In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid