Bishop warns global democracy is slipping

By AAP Newswire

Democratic standards are slipping around the world and Foreign Minister Julie Bishop warns minorities must be treated equally or they will radicalise.

Ms Bishop said 2018 was the 12th year in a row that measures tracking fair elections, freedom of the press and civil liberties have declined.

"This is an issue I have discussed with world leaders and counterparts, for example, Iraq's Prime Minister Abadi," Ms Bishop said in a speech at La Trobe University on Wednesday.

"In the aftermath of the ISIS defeat, it is important to ensure all citizens, including minorities, are equal before the law.

"All citizens of any state must feel confident their interests are protected, or there is a risk they will turn to militias and insurgents as an alternative."

Ms Bishop said Freedom House has tracked a global decline in democratic standards since 2006, with freedoms dropping in 113 countries and rising in only 62.

"The attack against, or winding back of, liberal institutions is resulting from the rise of authoritarian governments in some instances and from the spread of extreme religious ideologies in other instances," she said.