At a strategic consultation in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, the National Mechanism for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders adopted its 2024 Action Plan to enhance support for defenders amid shrinking civic space and heightened State focus on terrorism.
In a joint letter published today, 27 NGOs from across the world have called on States to co-sponsor and support a resolution during the 35th session of the UN Human Rights Council renewing the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on Eritrea. The draft resolution also calls on States and other stakeholders to provide the mandate holder with all necessary support, and urges the Government of Eritrea to cooperate with the mandate holder, including by allowing unencumbered access to the country.
The UN Human Rights Council appointed a Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Eritrea in 2012 and, as the situation deteriorated, then established a commission of inquiry to investigate gross human rights violations in 2014.
To date, the governmemt of Eritrea has refused to cooperate with either the Special Rapporteur or the Commission of Inquiry, denying them access to the country. The Special Rapporteur has, however, been able to visit neighbouring countries and take testimony from rights holders and victims who have fled Eritrea or are living in exile. With the situation in the country continuing to deteriorate, and the lack of any good faith efforts at the national-level to end, investigate and ensure accountability for violations, it is imperative that the mandate of the Special Rapporteur is renewed.
On 30 August 2022, the UN Human Rights Office concluded that the Chinese State may be responsible for committing crimes against humanity, in a report on human rights in the Uyghur region (Xinjiang). One year later, global pressure on Beijing remains high, ahead of a major UN human rights review in January.
The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights concluded its 77th Ordinary Session held in Arusha, United Republic of Tanzania from 20 October to 9 November 2023. During the session, the Commission renewed its Bureau. It received solemn declarations from elected and re-elected members and launched several documents and newsletters, among others.