The design of a human rights-based framework for communication policies in Third World countries is the main focus of this article. This instrument aims to promote the independence of public media, to increase people's access to public means of information and communication, and to ensure that these media are not abused as a vehicle or legitimation of human rights violations. It takes into account the rights and obligations of the four major parties involved: individuals in Third World countries, as the central subjects of development and active participants in and beneficiaries of the development process; formal Third World state representatives; donor governments, as bilateral partners of Third World governments; and the international community. It hopes to achieve this, finally, through a revision of political power structures in Third World countries, a greater impact of donor conditionalities and a better use of the international community's strategic position to promote universal respect for, and observance and protection of, all human rights and fundamental freedoms.
International Communication Gazette, October 1999 vol. 61 no. 5 411-432.