Freedom House to open an office in Taipei
Taipei, July 29 (CNA) Freedom House, a U.S. government-sponsored nonprofit organization that champions democracy, political freedom, and human rights, announced Friday plans to open an office in Taipei.
In a Twitter post, Freedom House said the upcoming Taipei office is expected to become a hub for the organization in the Indo-Pacific region.
“Freedom House looks forward to expanding its presence in Taiwan, which remains one of Asia’s strongest democracies,” the organization tweeted.
“The (Taipei) office will allow us to expand and deepen our collaboration with individuals and groups supporting human rights and democracy in the Indo-Pacific region,” the organization added.
Freedom House was established in 1941 during World War II with the aim of fighting Nazism and Communism in Europe.
On its website, Freedom House, America’s premier organization to champion the advancement of freedom around the world, said it advocated “American leadership and working with like-minded governments to oppose vigorously against dictators and oppression, and strengthen democracy in the world”.
According to Freedom House’s 2021 Financial Report, the US government was the organization’s largest financial sponsor with approximately 92% of its money funded by US government grants.
In 2019, China imposed sanctions on several U.S. pro-democracy and human rights groups, including Freedom House, for their support for protests in Hong Kong sparked by a controversial bill that would have allowed the extradition of criminals from Hong Kong to mainland China.
To facilitate democracy, freedom and human rights and to assess the degree of democratic freedoms in countries and major contested territories around the world, Freedom House publishes the annual Freedom in the World report.
In the 2022 edition published in February, Taiwan scores 94 points, unchanged from 2021, and retains the status of a “free” country by taking 17th place in the world.
According to the 2022 report, Taiwan scored 38 out of a maximum of 40 for political rights and 56 out of a maximum of 60 for civil liberties. In Asia, Taiwan is second only to Japan, which scored 96 points and took 11th place in the world.
China was rated a “not free” country, again, in the 2022 report and placed 185th with a score of 9 points, the same as in 2021 after scoring minus 2 points in political rights and 11 in civil liberties.
According to Freedom House, the organization has 12 field offices around the world, scattered across Eastern Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America.