The Marshall Islands government says a lack of resources is hindering the development of human rights there.
The US State Department has released a report critiquing human rights in the Marshalls and suggesting prison conditions, government corruption and domestic violence are problems.
The report comes as the Marshall Islands officials prepare to appear for their second UN Universal Periodic Review of human rights in Geneva.
The secretary of foreign affairs, Bruce Kijiner, says the republic has worked hard since its last review in 2010, including working towards various women and children's rights agreements and proposing a new prison.
However he says because of a lack of capacity, their efforts are limited without assistance.
"We have the political will to advance these issues forward. It's just a matter of getting the resources and getting support from our friends in the international community. We are getting some positive responses but I will consider it something achievable if I see it."