AFTERNOON - Human Rights Council Asks Designated Expert of the High Commissioner on Human Rights in Sudan to Document All Allegations of Human Rights Violations since 25 October 2021, including those Arising from the Current Conflict
The Human Rights Council this afternoon concluded its thirty-sixth special session on the human rights impact of the ongoing conflict in Sudan, adopting a resolution in which it decided that the mandate of the designated Expert of the High Commissioner on human rights in Sudan should, with immediate effect, also include detailed monitoring and documentation of, and reporting to the Human Rights Council on, all allegations of human rights violations and abuses since 25 October 2021, including those arising directly from the current conflict.
In the resolution on the human rights impact of the ongoing conflict in Sudan (A/HRC/36/L.1) as orally amended, adopted by a vote of 18 in favour, 15 against, and 14 abstentions, the Council, welcoming the appointment by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights of Radhouan Nouicer as his designated Expert on human rights in the Sudan on 16 December 2022: expressed its grave concern at the serious outbreak of conflict and escalation of violence in Sudan between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces, which could undermine the progress made towards a peaceful transition to democracy and stability in Sudan. The Council called for an immediate cessation of violence by all parties, without pre-conditions, the rapid establishment of full, safe and unhindered humanitarian access, the rehabilitation of critical basic infrastructure, a negotiated and peaceful resolution to the conflict on the basis of inclusive dialogue, and the recommitment of all parties with the people of Sudan to return to its transition towards a civilian-led government.
The Council condemned all reported violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law, including reported acts of sexual and gender-based violence, committed since the start of hostilities by all parties to the conflict across the country and called upon the parties to the conflict in Sudan to demonstrate the utmost restraint and to refrain from further violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law. It also called upon all parties to the conflict to cease any measure that exacerbated the humanitarian crisis, and to rapidly allow and facilitate the full, safe and unhindered passage of humanitarian relief for civilians in need.
In the resolution, the Council condemned any attacks on humanitarian and health workers, and on the premises and members of international organizations, civil society organizations and the diplomatic community in Sudan, and urged all parties to the conflict in Sudan to respect and protect civilians, including those who were humanitarian workers and health workers, and civilian infrastructure, and to allow and facilitate full, safe and unimpeded access for humanitarian aid into and throughout Sudan.
The Council decided that the mandate of the designated Expert of the High Commissioner should, with immediate effect, also include detailed monitoring and documentation of, and reporting to the Human Rights Council on, all allegations of human rights violations and abuses since the 25 October 2021, including those arising directly from the current conflict, as well as a specific focus on prevention of further such violations and abuses from occurring. The resolution requested the High Commissioner, with the assistance of the designated Expert on human rights in Sudan, to present to the Human Rights Council, at its fifty-fourth and fifty-seventh sessions, an oral update on the human rights situation in Sudan.
The results of the vote were as follows:
In favour (18): Argentina, Belgium, Chile, Costa Rica, Czechia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mexico, Montenegro, Paraguay, Romania, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and United States.
Against (15): Algeria, Bolivia, China, Cuba, Eritrea, Gambia, Malaysia, Morocco, Pakistan, Qatar, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, and Viet Nam.
Abstention (14): Bangladesh, Benin, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Gabon, Honduras, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Malawi, Maldives, Nepal, South Africa, and Uzbekistan.
The Council adopted the report of the special session ad referendum.
The special session started this morning with a statement by Volker Türk, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, who strongly condemned this wanton violence, in which both sides had trampled international humanitarian law, notably the principles of distinction, proportionality and precaution. He said it was essential that both parties urgently committed to an inclusive political process and to a negotiated peace. Mr. Türk said the Human Rights Council had called this special session to express its urgent concern for the rights and lives of Sudan’s people. He urged all States with influence in the region to encourage by all possible means the resolution of this crisis.
The fifty-third regular session of the Human Rights Council will be held from 19 June to 14 July 2023.
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