In the conclusions of the document, several shortcomings are addressed:
Although the EU has achieved some undoubted successes (such as the UNGA Resolution calling for a moratorium on the death penalty), it nonetheless faces new challenges:If these are the conclusions, you can read between the lines that human rights are not really mainstreamed in European Union policies and politics, and that the European Union and its member states are not really exemplary.
- In this year of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the universality of human rights is disputed, more than ever, by those who subscribe to relativism based on a tradition, religion, cultural affiliation or history.
- At a time when the European Union is increasingly expected to answer for the situation of human rights within its frontiers, it must be exemplary. It is a question both of consistency and of credibility on the international stage.
- Mainstreaming human rights across all the EU's internal and external policies is the key to ensuring that consistency.
Because why else would these statements appear in the conclusions?
And if this is what the Union is able to conclude after more than 200 pages of reporting its activities in the field of human rights for 2008, then I would interpret the document as a concession of failure, of inefficient use of funds (e.g. 140 Million for EIDIHR) and efforts.