22 September 2017

Sudan to Submit Human Rights Resolution to UN Council

Geneva / Khartoum — The Sudanese government submitted a draft resolution together with the United States on the situation of human rights in Sudan, amid criticism from European Union delegates who are unhappy with the drafted efforts to improve the human rights.

The Sudanese Ambassador to Geneva Mustafa Osman Ismael read the draft resolution on Wednesday and said that it was prepared in full agreement with the United States mission and the Sudanese mission in Geneva.

He called upon other member states of the UN Human Rights Council to support the draft resolution until it will be officially adopted at the end of the current session of the Human Rights Council.

Abdelbagi Jibril, the president of the Darfur Centre for Aid and Documentation, told Radio Dabanga that the Sudanese Permanent Mission to the UN in Geneva helped organise an informal consultative meeting to present the draft resolution in the presence of a large number of representatives of state members of the Human Rights Council, and of non-governmental organisations in Sudan.

A delegate of the European Union, however, expressed his dissatisfaction with the proposed draft as it did not meet the required efforts to improve the human rights situation in Sudan. He pointed to the weakness of the draft and made a number of proposals to improve a number of its paragraphs.

The Swiss delegation stressed the weakness of the proposed draft resolution and also presented a number of necessary improvements to reflect the reality of human rights in Sudan. Also the delegate of Canada made amendments that reflect the reality of human rights.

'The draft shows an accelerated approach to ending the mandate of the UN Independent Expert on human rights in Sudan.' - Abdelbagi Jibril

Jibril explained that Sudan and the United States promised to put the proposals into consideration at the end of the meeting and expected the form of the draft resolution, including comments and amendments, to be put to a vote at the end of the current 36th session of the Human Rights Council.

"The draft resolution is weak and politicised and does not meet the requirements of improving the human rights situation," Jibril told Radio Dabanga. "It does not reflect the reality of human rights in Sudan nor does it reflect the great challenges faced by victims of human rights violations in Sudan, especially in the conflict zones."

The chairman of the Darfur Centre for Aid and Documentation referred to a paragraph in the draft that was contained in the draft resolution that shows an accelerated approach to ending the mandate of the UN Independent Expert on the human rights situation in Sudan in the near future, in the event that Sudan improves its human rights record.

"Seen the gross and repeated violations of human, we wish the draft resolution was presented under item 4 of the agenda of the Human Rights Council, to place Sudan among the special cases that require permanent a follow-up by the Human Rights Council," Jibril said.

Independent Expert

In its resolution 33/26, the Human Rights Council extended the mandate of the Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, Aristide Nononsi, for a period of one year, and requested him to report to it at 36th session on the implementation of his mandate.

During his fourth visit to Sudan, Nononsi said he witnessed positive developments, yet he remained concerned about a number of human rights issues in the country.

Efforts for sanctions relief

On Wednesday the first vice-president of Sudan, Bakri Hassan Saleh, received the visiting United States Congress delegation led by David Nunes. According to Nunes' press statement afterwards, the meeting discussed the countries' joint efforts against terrorism and other issues that are related to a possible lifting of economic sanctions against Sudan.

The deadline for the US administration on the permanent lifting of the sanctions has been delayed to 12 October. Sudanese Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour arrived in Washington on 14 September, to make the case that a more cooperative Sudan deserves the sanctions relief.

Ghandour also attended the United Nations General Assembly in New York. This resulted in the signing of a declaration on the UN Management Reform, called for by the US. The spokesman for the ministry of Foreign Affairs said that Sudan "signed the document in line with its convictions and belief on the need to effect a radical reform within the UN system's various agencies and organisations".

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