Letter to HRC members on atrocity prevention priorities at the Council’s 52nd session from Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect


The HRC plays an essential role in the prevention of mass atrocity crimes by responding to situations where populations are at risk of, or are experiencing, genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity or ethnic cleansing. During its 44th session in July 2020 the HRC adopted Resolution 44/14 on the Responsibility to Protect (R2P), recognizing the important contribution of the UN human rights system in addressing situations where there is a risk of atrocity crimes being committed. This is in line with the Council’s prevention mandate, enshrined in General Assembly Resolution 60/251, which stipulates that it shall “contribute, through dialogue and cooperation, towards the prevention of human rights violations and respond promptly to human rights emergencies.”

As a current member of the HRC we strongly urge you to uphold this shared commitment to prevent atrocity crimes. The Global Centre respectfully encourages you to consider the following recommendations as you engage in the 52nd regular session:

… During its 52nd session, the HRC will have an opportunity to discuss numerous other atrocity situations. We respectfully urge your delegation to actively participate in the interactive dialogues with the High Commissioner and the Designated Expert on Sudan, the Special Rapporteurs on Afghanistan and Iran and with the International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia, the Fact-Finding Missions on Venezuela and Libya, and on the High Commissioner’s report on the Occupied Palestinian Territory. We also urge you to participate in the Enhanced Interactive Dialogue on human rights in Eritrea and on the Democratic Republic of the Congo and in the High-level dialogue on the Central African Republic. During the General Debate under Item 4, we respectfully urge your delegation to note that possible atrocity crimes are also currently being committed in Cameroon, the Central Sahel, Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Mozambique, and Nigeria, and that the international community must do more to uphold its collective responsibility to protect.

Continue reading at https://www.globalr2p.org/publications/letter-to-hrc-members-on-atrocity-prevention-priorities-at-the-councils-52nd-session/

Statement by the Special Advisers on the Prevention of Genocide on the situation in Israel and in the Palestinian Occupied Territory of Gaza Strip (July 2014)

Dieng and Welsh stated that the high number of civilian casualties, particularly among the Palestinians, could demonstrate disproportionate and indiscriminate use of force by the Israeli Defence Forces. At the same time, the launching of rocket attacks by Hamas and other Palestinian armed groups into Israeli residential areas constitutes indiscriminate use of force. In this context, “both parties are in violation of international humanitarian law and international human rights law, and these acts could constitute atrocity crimes”, the two Special Advisers observed.
The Special Advisers urge all parties to adhere to the principles of distinction between civilians and combatants, and between civilian objects and military objectives. They also call upon the Israeli Defence Forces to fully respect the principle of proportionality…

Israel, as the Occupying Power, the Palestinian Authority, and Hamas, have the responsibility to protect the population in Gaza. The Special Advisers call on the three parties to take immediate measures to ensure the protection of the population.

Continue reading at http://www.un.org/en/preventgenocide/adviser/pdf/24.07.2014%20Special%20Advisers’%20Statement%20on%20the%20situation%20in%20Israel%20and%20the%20occupied%20Gaza%20strip.pdf

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