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

 

UN Rights Experts Turn Down Visit To Guantanamo

‘Deeply Regretting’ US Terms, UN Rights Experts Turn Down Visit To Guantanamo

Five independent United Nations human rights experts today rejected a United States invitation to visit its detention base in Guantanamo, Cuba, because the US Government did not accept standard terms for a “credible, objective and fair assessment,” including the ability to conduct private interviews with detainees.

“It is particularly disappointing that the United States Government, which has consistently declared its commitment to the principles of independence and objectivity of the fact-finding mechanisms, was not in a position to accept these terms,” the five Rapporteurs of the UN Commission on Human Rights said in a joint statement.

The five, who are studying the applicability of international human rights law to persons arrested, detained or tried for alleged terrorism or other violations, in Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantanamo and elsewhere, announced last month that they had accepted a US invitation to visit the base provided they had free access to all detainees and the opportunity to carry out private interviews.

But they have received no US response on this point.

“We deeply regret that the United States Government did not accept the standard Terms of Reference for a credible, objective and fair assessment of the situation of the detainees at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. These Terms include the ability to conduct private interviews with detainees,” they said today.

“Under the circumstances, we will not be travelling to Guantanamo Bay Naval Station, as doing so would undermine the principles on which the work of the Special Procedures, the fact-finding mechanisms established by the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, is based,” they added.

“These principles apply to all fact-finding missions undertaken by the different Special Rapporteurs, Working Groups and Experts of the Commission to all countries.”

The Rapporteurs are unpaid experts serving in an independent personal capacity who receive their mandate from the Commission and report back to it.

The five are: are Leandro Despouy, Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers; Paul Hunt, Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health; Asma Jahangir, Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief; Manfred Nowak, Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, and Leila Zerrougui, Chairperson-Rapporteur of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 


Myanmar: UN Condemns Escalating Violence In Deadliest Day Of Protests So Far

In response to the killing of at least 18 protesters demonstrating against Myanmar’s military coup, the UN human rights office (OHCHR) on Sunday together with the UN chief, strongly condemned the “escalating violence” and called for an immediate end to the use of force... More>>

Syria: Economic Decline, Rising Hunger And Surging Humanitarian Needs

Syria’s fragile economy has “suffered multiple shocks” over the past 18 months, with its currency plummeting and joblessness swelling as people struggle to cover their basic needs, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator told the Security Council ... More>>

OECD: Final Quarter Of 2020 Shows Continued Recovery In G20 International Merchandise Trade

G20 international merchandise trade continued to rebound in the fourth quarter of 2020 ( exports up 7.2% and imports up 6.8%), following the sharp falls seen in the first half of 2020, as lockdown measures affected trade globally. Although growth ... More>>


Focus On: UN SDGs


UNFCCC: Greater Climate Ambition Urged As Initial NDC Synthesis Report Is Published

UN Climate Change today published the Initial NDC Synthesis Report, showing nations must redouble efforts and submit stronger, more ambitious national climate action plans in 2021 if they’re to achieve the Paris Agreement goal of limiting global temperature rise by 2°C—ideally 1.5°C—by the end of the century... More>>


2021: Critical Year To ‘reset Our Relationship With Nature’ – UN Chief

During this time of “crisis and fragility”, the UN chief told the United Nations Environment Assembly on Monday that human well-being and prosperity can be vastly improved by prioritizing nature-based solutions. Painting a picture of the turmoil ... More>>


Paris Agreement: UN Secretary-General António Guterres To Mark U.S. Reentry With Envoy For Climate John Kerry

Watch live at webtv.un.org UN Secretary-General António Guterres will join U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John F. Kerry at an event marking the United States’ reentry into the Paris Agreement this Friday. The discussion with the Secretary-General ... More>>