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Strong stand taken by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the crises situations raging on the African continent
The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)
21 May 2012
The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and its member organisations welcome the strong stand taken by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) on the political, security and humanitarian conflicts and crises raging on the continent, at the close of its 51st Ordinary Session. After calling for harder stances of the African Commission for many sessions, the FIDH now urges African Union (AU) Member States to give immediate effect to the recently adopted resolutions.
Sudan and South Sudan are thus called to take all necessary measures in order to ensure the preservation of the life and security of their respective populations and immediately bring answers to the issues that set the countries against each other. “The military option should give way to a political solution. The resumption of negotiations on the fundamental issues of the distribution of wealth, the borders’ delimitation as well as the citizenship is essential to avoid unrest in a region where civilians will be, once more, the main victims”, said Souhayr Belhassen, FIDH President, who carried this message before the African Commission(…)

(…) Also condemned by the FIDH during this Session, the political and security situation prevailing calls for the preservation of the territorial integrity of Mali and the re-establishment of sound democratic institutions that will allow a way-out of the crises in those two countries. The restoration of peace and political stability is essential in a West African region where several armed groups, like in Nigeria, still perpetrate violations.

(…) The FIDH welcomes the African Commission’s clear call for the amendment of the Ethiopian Charities and Civil Societies Proclamation, for the respect of the rights to fundamental freedoms in Swaziland and for justice to be rendered to the murdered journalists in Somalia. All these recommendations were supported by our organisation.

Lastly, the FIDH pays tribute to the adoption of a resolution urging AU Member States to ratify the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. The FIDH has indeed supported the adoption of such a resolution by calling herself African States to show more leadership and ratify the Protocol, which entry into force will affirm the access to justice for the poorest and most marginalised.

“This Session of the ACHPR has fulfilled most of our expectations, yet the main issue henceforth is the implementation of ACHPR’s resolutions by the States, whom to our understanding, cannot be unshaken by the emergency and the seriousness of the situations on the continent. The other issue obviously at stake remains the recommendations that will be addressed to Sudan and Angola, the two countries which reports were considered during this session. We expect the African Commission to adopt public recommendations that measure up to the challenges experienced by these States” declared Mabassa Fall, FIDH Permanent Representative before the African Union.
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