World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Zimbabwe: Ten UN Experts Deplore Forced Evictions

UN Housing Expert Arrives In Zimbabwe, 10 Experts Deplore Forced Evictions

As United Nations human rights experts expressed concern about human rights violations resulting from the Zimbabwean Government's eviction of illegal dwellers, the chief of the UN programme on sustainable housing arrived in the southern African country to review the humanitarian aspects of the removals.

UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) Executive Director Anna Kajumulo Tibaijuka, who was representing UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and whose visit was approved by President Robert Mugabe, was briefed yesterday by UN staff members working in the country, a UN spokesman said today.

She was expecting to meet Mr. Mugabe and was deciding on a range of other contacts, including those among the affected population, he said.

Meanwhile, 10 United Nations Special Rapporteurs on several human freedoms and rights issued a statement expressing concern about the "recent mass forced evictions in Zimbabwe and related human rights violations" and raising questions about the negative effects on supplies of water and food, education and health care, including HIV/AIDS treatment.

The Government should "immediately meet its human rights responsibilities, particularly with regard to the situation of those people who have already been displaced," they said in a statement issued through the Office of the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR).

They said they "deplore and demand an end to the Government's campaign of forced evictions and the conditions under which it has been conducted" and they expressed disquiet that "the forced evictions of so many people may soon lead to critical health and economic concerns that will be a major threat to life for the most directly affected Zimbabweans."

The evictions had targeted informal traders and families living in informal settlements, including women with HIV/AIDS, widows, children with disabilities and HIV/AIDS orphans and many of those evicted, including women, are reported to have been beaten by police, the experts said.

The people evicted were given no prior notice and no opportunity to appeal or to retrieve their property before its destruction, they said.

The 10 included Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women Yakin Erturk, Independent Expert on Liberia Charlotte Abaka, Special Rapporteur on the Highest Attainable Standard of Physical and Mental Health Paul Hunt, Special Rapporteur on the Right to Education Vernor Munoz Villalobos, Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Opinion and Expression and Ambeyi Ligabo.

Also signing the message were Manfred Nowak, Special Rapporteur on Torture, Rodolfo Stavenhagen, Special Rapporteur on Indigenous People, Hina Jilani, Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Human Rights Defenders, Gabriela Pizarro, Special Rapporteur on Migrants, Miloon Kothari, Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Gordon Campbell: Is This Guy The World’s Most Dangerous Thirtysomething?

Saudi Arabia has long been regarded as a pillar of stability in the Middle East, and is the essential caterer to the West’s fossil fuel needs. It is also the country that gave us Osama Bin Laden, al Qaeda, and 15 of the 19 terrorists who carried out the 9/11 attacks... More>>


Non-Binding Postal Vote: Australia Says Yes To Same Sex Marriage

Binoy Kampmark: Out of 150 federal seats, 133 registered affirmative totals in returning their response to the question “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?”. More>>


Bonn Climate Change Conference: Protecting Health In Small Island States

The vision is that, by 2030, all Small Island Developing States will have health systems that are resilient to climate change and countries around the world will be reducing their carbon emissions both to protect the most vulnerable from climate risks and deliver large health benefits in carbon-emitting countries. More>>


Camp Shut Down: Refugees Must Be Rescued From Manus

On 31st October 2017, the detention centre on Manus Island in which the Australian Government has been holding more than 700 refugees was closed, leaving those living there in a desperate situation. More>>



Rohingya Muslims Massacred: Restrictions On Aid Put 1000s At Risk

Amnesty: The Myanmar authorities’ restrictions on international aid in Rakhine state is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk in a region where mainly Rohingya people are already suffering horrific abuses from a disproportionate military campaign. More>>