New Delhi: A senior United Nations official on Wednesday expressed regret that India had missed a "golden" moment to establish a non-discriminative legislative framework for women by not implementing Verma Committee's recommendations, including lowering age of consent to 16 years and marital rape in the anti-rape law. UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, Rashida Manjoo, said the recommendations of the Justice Verma Commission were not accepted completely. "It is unfortunate that the opportunity to establish a substantiative and specific equality and non-discrimination rights legislative framework for women, to address de facto in equality and discrimination, and to protect and prevent against all forms of violence against women, was lost," she said.
Luanda: This is my first ever visit as High Commissioner for Human Rights to Angola, and it has, I believe, been a fruitful one. Having heard about the progress the country has made over the past ten years, I wished to see for myself how much has been achieved and what are the principal challenges remaining on the human rights front, as well as to offer the Government the services of my Office in finding solutions to some of those challenges, and I would like to thank the Government for its invitation.
Johannesburg: In the past four and a half years - since I became the High Commissioner for Human Rights - my Office has often been caught up in outbreaks of crisis around the world, so it's not often that I have an opportunity to step back and take a longer perspective on our work. You've given me one such opening today, by asking me to address the daunting topic "human rights achievements and challenges in a rapidly changing world".
New York: The United States has proposed that the U.N. peace-keeping mission in the disputed territory of Western Sahara help monitor human rights there, U.N. diplomats said on Tuesday, an idea that has prompted an expression of regret from Morocco.The U.S. proposal was contained in a draft U.N. Security Council resolution Washington circulated to the so-called Group of Friends on Western Sahara, which includes the United States, France, Spain, Britain and Russia, U.N. diplomats said on condition of anonymity.
South Africa and Norway co-chaired an international conference on Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in Oslo, Norway, on 15 and 16 April. The Conference gathered more than 200 participants from 84 countries of all regions of the world, representing UN Member States, UN staff, national and regional human rights experts as well as participants from civil society. the Conference was co-chaired by Mr. Jerry Matjila (South Africa) and Ms. Bente Angell-Hansen(Norway). Their summary of conclusions:
Gaborone: The Republic of South Africa is proud to have been one of the ardent proponents of, and an active participant in, the negotiation and adoption of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court in 1998, creating the first permanent international criminal tribunal to combat impunity for the most serious crimes of concern to the international community, namely crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and let us not forget the crime of aggression. At the time that the negotiations for the Rome Statute were taking place, South Africa was in the process of finalizing its own democratic Constitution.
New York: Secretary-General has expressed alarm at the ongoing insecurity in the Central African Republic (CAR), and in particular by reports of grave violations of human rights, including rape and recruitment of child soldiers. “I am extremely concerned by reports of grave violations of human rights, looting and pillaging, targeted attacks, rape, recruitment and the use of child soldiers in violation of international norms,” Mr. Ban said in a message to the Extraordinary Summit of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) on the Central African Republic (CAR), being held in N’Djaména, Chad.
In 2011 the heads of state of the countries comprising the Southern African Development Community (SADC) decided to dissolve the SADC Tribunal, a regional court modelled on the European Court of Justice. Four years earlier the Tribunal had ruled that the Zimbabwe government’s expropriations of land owned by white farmers violated the SADC Treaty principles on the rule of law and non-discrimination. The Tribunal ordered the government to refrain from interfering with the farmers’ occupation and ownership of their properties.
The South African Development Community Treaty (the SADC Treaty) provides for the establishment of the SADC Tribunal (the Tribunal) “to ensure adherence to, and proper interpretation of, the provisions of this Treaty and subsidiary instruments and to adjudicate upon such disputes as may be referred to it” and for a Protocol on the Tribunal (the Protocol) that sets out its “composition, powers, functions, procedures and other related matters”-vide Articles 9 and 16(2).
On 20 March the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on International Relations and Cooperation was briefed by Deputy Minister Ebrahim. He gave a brief background on the history of Western Sahara. Western Sahara was occupied by the Kingdom of Morocco in 1976. However, neither the United Nations nor the African Union recognises Morocco’s claims of sovereignty over the Western Sahara.