Ethiopia persistently blocked visit by Human Right Watch experts

September 29th, 2006 Print Print Email Email

Human Rights Watch reported today that Ethiopia has persistently blocked visits of its fact finding mission.The agency has categorized Ethiopia along Notorious human right abusers such as North Korea, Burma, and Zimbabwe.

UN member states must take immediate steps to improve cooperation with the Human Rights Council, particularly with the independent experts it has appointed to look at human rights issues, Human Rights Watch said today.

More than 80 states have outstanding requests for visits by council independent experts, according to information on the website of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, including half of the council’s members.

The council today concluded a series of “interactive dialogues” during which some 27 experts reported on human rights issues such as torture, trafficking in persons, and violence against women. Twelve additional experts reported on the human rights situation in particular countries.
Although these experts depend on fact-finding missions in order to prepare their reports, numerous states have persistently blocked their visits. Experts appointed in 2000 for Burma and in 2004 for North Korea have never been allowed access to the countries they are intended to monitor. But the problem extends well beyond such notorious human rights abusers. Seven additional states – Ethiopia, India, Philippines, Russia, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Zimbabwe – have failed to cooperate with at least five experts.

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