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Cablegate: Un Expert Group On Darfur

VZCZCXRO2262
RR RUEHAT
DE RUEHGV #1170 1311040
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 111040Z MAY 07
FM USMISSION GENEVA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 3887
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 2225
INFO RUEHZJ/HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL COLLECTIVE
RUEHKH/AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM 5299
RUEHLS/AMEMBASSY LUSAKA 0317
RUEHJL/AMEMBASSY BANJUL 0131
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 0854

UNCLAS GENEVA 001170

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR IO/RHS, DRL/MLGA, L/HRR, AF/SPG

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM UNHRC SU
SUBJECT: UN EXPERT GROUP ON DARFUR


1. (U) Summary: MissionOffs met May 3 with the Office of the
High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to discuss
follow-up to A/HRC/4/L.7, the March Human Rights Council
consensus Darfur resolution. The group created by that
resolution, the UN Expert Group on Darfur, met in Geneva
April 24-27 with the Sudanese PermRep, HRC President de Alba,
Germany as EU President, and Romania as incoming HRC
President. Sudanese government participation in the meetings
was characterized by OHCHR as "constructive." A follow-up
meeting with a high-level Sudanese government delegation from
Khartoum, composed of senior officials from the relevant
government ministries as identified by the Sudanese
government, is scheduled for May 23-25 to discuss
implementation of the various UN resolutions on Darfur. The
experts group has no plans to visit Sudan. End Summary.

2. (U) PolCouns and Senior Human Rights Officer met May 3
with Christina Saunders, OHCHR staffer for Sima Samar, the
Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the
Sudan. The UN Expert Group on Darfur, composed of the
Special Rapporteur (SR) on Sudan; Philip Alston, the SR on
extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions; Hina Jilani,
the Special Representative of the Secretary General (SRSG) on
human rights defenders; Walter Kalin, SRSG on IDPs; Manfred
Nowak, SR on Torture; and Yakin Erturk, SR on violence
against women, met April 24-27. Radhika Coomarswamy, the
SRSG for children and armed conflict, is also a member of the
group, but was unable to attend the April meetings.
According to Saunders, the group started its work by
reviewing all previous recommendations on Darfur, some 400
pages of documentation. Adhering to the terms of the HRC
resolution that created it, the experts also sought to
identify "needs" of the Sudanese government in living up to
its human rights obligations. The Expert Group identified
those recommendations it considered most urgent, which could
be implemented in the short- (three months) and medium-term
(one year), as well as assistance that could be offered to
the Sudanese government in implementing the recommendations.
This list was provided to the Government of Sudan May 2. The
Sudanese government intends to respond in writing, according
to Saunders. The recommendations themselves and Sudanese
government response will not be made public until they are
presented in the group's report to the June session of the
HRC.

3. (U) As part of their April meetings, the Expert Group
also met with African Union representatives and the African
regional group, and held a telecon with the Sudanese State
Minister for Foreign Affairs and the African Commission on
Human and People's Rights in Banjul. SR on Sudan Samar had
hoped to travel to Banjul to meet with the African
Commission, but was unable to identify a mutually agreeable
time. Saunders reported, however, that the African
Commission was willing to work with the group and welcomed
the Human Rights Council's interest in working with it. The
UN experts also spoke with the African Commission's SR on
IDPs, who promised to convey the experts' interests to the
upcoming May 16 African Commission meeting in Accra, where
Darfur will be on the agenda. Saunders told MissionOffs that
the African Commission had visited Darfur in 2004, but had
yet to release its report on the visit because of a lack of
response from the Sudanese government. Saunders also
mentioned that the Special Rapporteur on IDPs, Walter Kalin,
would be travelling to Addis Ababa the week of May 7 to meet
with Abdul Mohammed, the Chairman of the Darfur-Darfur
Dialogue and Consultation (DDDC).
TICHENOR

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