Despite marked improvements in human rights practices in some countries since that time, the UN continues to avoid focusing on certain major violators whenever it is politically expedient, as has been the case with large-scale massacres in a number of countries. In the reports of the Commission meetings a new technique is now being used whereby, in contrast to the past, the countries accused of violations are not named, being referred to by circumlocutions such as "in one country". Such procedures effectively ensure that certain violations are not exposed to the media spotlight which is the principal UN means for reducing human rights infractions by governments, thus seriously undermining the Declaration and adherence to the norms therein and in other instruments.
In a 1991 report of the international human-rights monitoring group Africa Watch, for 30 years the UN has kept quiet about the true degree of suffering in Ethiopia, including military abuses against civilians and the brutal treatment of Eritrea by Emperor Haile Selassie, which has continued on a far bloodier scale with Colonel Mengistu. It is claimed that the UN knew what was going on, but denied reports of diversions of food, endorsed untrue government claims (including denial of military abuses against civilians) and directed aid only to the government side. The sabotage of UN charter principles is true for Africa as a whole. Atrocities of dictators against their own people were deemed "internal matters" and therefore taboo.