IRI Statement on Universal Democratic Freedoms and Racial Injustice

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Dr. Daniel Twining, President of the International Republican Institute (IRI), has released the following statement:  

“IRI’s mission is to strengthen democracy overseas. We are proud of our commitment to human freedom abroad. That does not blind us to the instances where democracy in the United States struggles to cure a deep wound.

Since its founding, IRI has stood for the rights of all human beings to live in a society that values them and affords them a voice, with leaders who are accountable to them. Around the world, this is what our democracy practitioners work to advance every day.

The brutal murder of George Floyd – and all other victims of racist violence – reminds us of our deep commitment to human rights, among which is combatting racism, and compels us to reiterate our commitment to universal democratic principles:

  • The right to speak freely, to protest peacefully, and to express dissent are fundamental and must be respected and protected;
  • Free societies are strengthened, not threatened, by peaceful dissent and democratic accountability;
  • While democracy cannot function without law and order, violence against peaceful protestors is not acceptable in a free society.

IRI looks forward to continuing our critical work to foster political freedom around the world and, as individuals, doing our utmost to ensure that America lives up to the ideals of a great and free nation. America’s support for democracy abroad is a natural extension of Americans’ belief in freedom and justice in our own country.”


A nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, the International Republican Institute (IRI) advances freedom and democracy worldwide by helping political parties to become more responsive, strengthening transparent and accountable governance, and working to increase the role of marginalized groups in the political process – including women and youth. More information is available at

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