UPR Report Consideration of Central African Republic (A/HRC/40/12):
Agenda Item 6: Universal Periodic Review (UPR)
14 March 2019
Oral Statement by: International Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Dscrimination (EAFORD) and Geneva International Centre for Justice (GICJ)
Thank you Mr. President,
We welcome the Report of the Working Group on the Universal Periodic Review of Central African Republic. We note a number of significant advances and especially the establishment of the Special Criminal Court to investigate war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in the country since 2003. Furthermore, we acknowledge the criminal sessions held by the Bangui Court of Appeal.
However, EAFORD and Geneva International Centre for Justice remain concerned about perpetrators who continue to enjoy impunity for crimes of sexual and gender-based violence as well as justice for the victims of such crimes. If progress on accountability is not immediately made, the rights of civilians and the lives of the innocent, including women and children will continue to be threatened. We strongly urge the government of CAR to strengthen its justice system and to speed progress in opening further investigations of such crimes with the cooperation of the commission of inquiry and the International Criminal Court. Peace, stability, and security can only be achieved by realising the full rights and fundamental freedoms of women and girls.
In addressing justice for victims, we note CAR’s acceptance and implementation of the UPR recommendations and in particular the establishment of Truth, Justice, Reparation and National Reconciliation Commission. While this is significant, we note concerns not only in its operations but also in guaranteeing and protecting the fundamental right to access to justice and right to a fair trial. Financial and technical assistance is therefore essential and we strongly encourage CAR to enhance cooperation with its neighbours, the Eastern African Community, and UN Special Procedures in addressing this issue.
In conclusion Mr. President,
We commend CAR for its developments and cooperation especially amidst difficult situations and wish every success in fully implementing the accepted recommendations; and in achieving and realising the rights for all women and girls especially considering the challenges and obstacles they face.